The weather outside is frightful

But it wasn’t that long ago when temperatures were warm enough to have one last afternoon tea on the porch. With covid I knew I’d need to open all the porch doors so the air would circulate and that’s just what I did. Amazing how the setting can change so drastically when you live up north.

Here we have the sunroom in December with frosty windows and a partial view of snow everywhere.

But not that many weeks ago the porch was the perfect place to safely enjoy tea with friends.

Why do I enjoy afternoon tea so much and why do I go through the trouble of preparing tea parties for my friends? One obvious reason is sharing doubles the joy. I love being of service to others in this way. Of course my tea parties are on hold now that it’s Winter in covid times – no indoor dining, but I continue to enjoy my daily tea ritual with my “dead friends”. What are “dead friends”? They are interesting people of the past. I get to know them as I read thier biographies. A little imagination really helps when one is living through a pandemic.

But today I will share my last Autumn tea party with you. I invited three lady friends

They all came bearing gifts which I really appreciated.

For this tea I decided each place setting should have its own tea pot so each person could choose the particular tea they most enjoy.

Recently I had enjoyed a Country Inn Day in the town of Medina, Ohio and there I stopped at a tea house for a bit of lunch. I brought Gladys Taber along via her book. Do you know this lady? I love her.

Yummy lunch and after my tea I browsed in the gift shop of this tea house and purchased a dozen tea strainers which I was anxious to use – one reason I wanted everyone to have their own tea pot at this next party. I think these tea strainers are very pretty. What do you think?

Could there be anything more elemental than a cup of tea?

Of course I needed to prepare some food for my guests and since I had recently enjoyed a chicken croissant with a broccoli salad I decided I would serve this at my tea.

I always make some kind of scones when I host a tea. There are so many different recipes for scones. I’m always trying new recipes. They’re all pretty good. Today’s scones contained raisins. I serve different toppings for the scones at each tea party. This time it was raspberry jam and lemon curd.

Before my guests arrive I get busy in my butler’s pantry setting the plates all in a row so I can fill them in a systematic manner. Then when the party begins I have little work to do. I can function as just one of the guests and that’s probably why I host tea parties. I like to attend tea parties. I enjoy these events just as much as my guests – maybe even more.

Every one of my teas is a little different. Sometimes I fuss a lot with tricky recipes, but other times I keep things simple. It depends just how much free time I may have and an afternoon tea can be quite enjoyable even if it’s the most simple event. Fancy food can be fun, but the really important thing is the friendship.

On one of my Country Inn Days when my husband and I went off to the Spread Eagle Inn in Hannoverton, Ohio I happened upon a new little shop and found these very sweet English china flowers to hold placecards. I’m always looking for pretty little things to use at my tea parties. There were eight different china flowers each in a different color – so pretty.

Sometimes I bake a dessert but not always. Most of us have lovely markets nearby which carry all sorts of goodies so you see even if you don’t like to cook or bake you have no excuse for never hosting an afternoon tea. Just drop by your local market and pick up a few tasty treats to serve your guests. For this tea I bought a darling little cake just big enough for four.

I did whip up some butter cookies too just because…

After our tea we settled in some comfy cushions on the porch and talked for a little while longer and my afternoon tea party came to an end. I’m anxious to host another tea, but it won’t be happening until the pandemic is over. Won’t it be great when that day finally comes? So stay safe, enjoy your own daily afternoon teas and use this time to plan for the teas you’ll be hosting when the covid virsus is no longer a threat. A tea party is a wonderful thing. So civilized.

18 thoughts on “The weather outside is frightful

  1. Your scones looked awesome! I love them high and big like that! In fact, all your food had me salivating !

  2. Dear Carol Ann,
    Lovely tea as usual. You make everything so beautiful. I miss you, Lori and Joni. Hope to join you lovely ladies for a tea in 2021! Happy holidays to all!

  3. Gwen, You’re so sweet. I’m so behind on my blog posts but since I can’t entertain now I guess I can catch up writing about past events. Yes, nothing like big, high scones. Smile to you.

  4. Maura, I’ve missed you too. How’s your new job going? I’m always in touch with Lori and Joni and they love you too. It will be wonderful when covid is over and we can get together. Happy holidays to you too.

  5. It was nice to find an e-mail just now that alerted me of this blog post of yours. You always make a wonderful display of beauty and grace look so easy, Carol Ann. (Is it safe for me to say that you’ve had a little practice at it by now? πŸ˜‰ )

    Also, is it permissible for me to wish you a Happy Birthday one day early?

    Enjoy your birthday tomorrow on the 17th of December, Carol Ann!


  6. Greg, You are always so kind with your comments, the perfect gentleman. If you didn’t live hundreds of miles from Hudson I’d invite you to one of my teas. Do you even like tea?
    We could find out. Your mother could come too. I bet she’s like a tea party. Also, I do appreciate your birthday greetings. Thank you. As I said before, you are definately very kind.

  7. Always a very pretty setting. I wish I had your energy. We don’t have many tea places in Buffalo. Lots of coffee places though. Of course, that doesn’t compare.
    Enjoy your holidays even though they will be different for all of us. Let’s pray πŸ™ 2021 is Brighter!

  8. Bonnie, It was lovely to see your note, but it would be lovlier if I could be seeing you. Some day. In the meantime enjoy tea, keep calm and carry on. Oh yes, and have yourself a merry little Christmas.

  9. Hi Carol Ann. Like always your teas are beautiful, delicious and relaxing. Thank you always for thinking of me and inviting me to your teas. It is always a honor to come to your beautiful home. Have a Merry Christmas πŸŽ„πŸŽ…πŸŽ€β›„ and pray πŸ™ that 2021 will bring us all joy, ☺, health and peace on earth 🌎. Happy New Year πŸŽ‰πŸŽŠπŸ˜˜

  10. Joni, You are so sweet and my very favorite guest for tea. Everyone loves you. Let’s hope we have many more teas to share in the months and years ahead, Happy everything!

  11. Hi Carol Ann,
    Happy belated birthday and I hope you are enjoying Christmas. I am doing well, working hard and glad to be employed. It’s Often long hours but I do like it and this is getting me in a much better place to retire eventually. Looking forward to better times in 2021!

    Happy New Year

  12. Maura, So nice to hear from you. Thanks for the birthday greeting. I hope you’re having a happy holiday too and I’m so glad work is going well for you.. I told Joni and Lori I heard from you and they send their best wishes. Can’t wait till this pandemic is over and we can all get together.

  13. SudsEats, I’m glad you like my tea accessories. They are half the fun of tea, aren’t they? The jam pots were a gift from a very lovely aunt. I think of her whenever I use them. Lots of my other tea goodies were purchased on fun outings so those delightful days come back to me when I’m using those things. It all adds up to great fun. I hope you’re having this fun too.

  14. Your blog is beautiful Carol. Not plain like mine. This is Leigh Ann under the name of earthcomplex. I miss your letters but perhaps following your blog will work too. Be well.

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