Saturday, January 30, 2016


Life is quiet and calm around here now, with lots of time for tea most days.  I often relax on an old needlepoint-topped stool - it was stitched before the middle of the last century by my hostess'  grandmother.  

The stool's right beside the bookcase, so I have a great view of many of the books - lots of tea books to check at here.  Do you see any favourites? 

This book on Celtic Teas is near the top of my own list - I think it's treasured by my hostess too.  

And here are another few special choices:

Ah, time for tea now - Grandfather stands tall in one corner.  

And here's the tea tray, all set for my hostess and her husband.  The tea today is Murchie's Queen Victoria, a tea that was first blended in the 19th century with some of Queen Victoria's favourite teas:  Darjeeling and Ceylon teas, Lapsang Souchong (smoky, eh?), and Jasmine.  An acquired taste, but it's definitely enjoyed in this household, and by many of their friends too, along with other teas from this Canadian company.  

The tea tray today also includes some home-made fruitcake from a Canadian recipe, and some little Swedish ginger cookies.   The china's from England (isn't it tempting sometimes to turn over the plate or saucer to check out the pattern name?),  but the blue creamer is a special addition from a Scottish pottery. 

Off to the other room with the comfortable chairs and the fireplace now for a good afternoon cuppa!  Bye for now!  

Friday, January 29, 2016

Work, Brioche Tea & Lunch in the Gardens

Work, Brioche Tea & Lunch in the Gardens

Today we are working in the gardens instead of spinning off to some fun adventure!  It is a beautiful day here in the OC.  The roses are pruned and needing a dormant spray today.  I picked an avocado and an orange in the orchard and some edible flowers in the gardens and made a salad to enjoy for lunch outdoors.  Won’t you join me?

The wonderful Brioche Tea is a caffeine free version of the American Tea Rooms best selling Brioche.  All the taste of a fresh baked patisserie with no caffeine and I’m loving saving all those calories that I am working off in the garden today.

Cheers and Happy Sipping!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016


Dear Tea Friends,

In preparing for the imminent departure of Tardis and pulling together some blog entries from my journal and my photos, I found these observations that Tardis had made over his time here.  So let's see what those notes say .....

"I waited on the porch outside the front door after being chauffeured here by a pleasant postie in a red and blue and white truck with "CanadaPost" on the side - I'm not sure if he spoke French or not ....
My host family were apparently out on some errands on that day in that first week in January, and oh, it was cold while I patiently waited!  They finally arrived home and much to my surprise, I overheard them say that yes, it was chilly, but really, the weather had been quite decent so far.  Hmmpphh!  we'll have to see about that, won't we?  Here's the view outside: 

We got acquainted that first week, and as they had to be out for various appointments (medical, I think), I had lots of time on my own here to explore. I'm VERY glad that travelling around doesn't seem to be part of the plan here - the weather's been lots colder than I'd thought, with wind, and snow too, that's stayed on the ground the whole time I've been here.  Hibernation is definitely the best way to go!  I've been able to take a few selfies while my hosts have been out - shhh, don't tell!.  Here are a few I was able to transfer. 

My hosts celebrate the full 12 Days of Christmas, so their tree was still up when I arrived:

 And I think I look very handsome next to the Yuletide needlepoint pillow:

And look!  I've found a friend."  

 (End of Tardis' entry for today ....)

{Dianne - hostess, writing now] Well, it looks as if Tardis kept himself well occupied while we were out.  I've found some more photos as well, and taken some myself to add to future posts this week.  Back in the next day or two with more.

Kind regards,

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Downton Abbey & Sticky Toffee Pudding Sundae

Downton Abbey & Sticky Toffee Pudding Sundae

The Tardis became a big fan of Downton Abbey while staying with Teresa in Ohio.  Teresa  sent along a gift packet of Downton Abbey teas and a service bell to ring for Spratt or Denker.  
A tea tray is ready to enjoy while watching the show tonight.  I just picked the pink camellia in my garden.  Isn’t it beautiful?

I’ll be sitting in a Downton Era chair which was a gift to my great-grandfather in the 1920’s and enjoying a pot of Mrs. Patmore’s Pudding Black Tea.  This tea has such a wonderful aroma. 

After the show, a Sticky Toffee Sundae with banana ice cream and caramelized banana slices was a perfect ending to a lovely evening of Downton.

Cheers and Happy Sipping!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Exploding Tardis

Team Oolong

Exploding Tardis  
The party is over and my thanks to each and every one of you for your participation. 

The Doctor and The Tardis felt so welcome and we are all filled with heartfelt joy! Thank you!

After celebrating the arrival of the doctor and The Tardis with our blog tea party I showed them to the guest room for the night.  The guest room is furnished with the bedroom suite from the “E.T.” movie from the 1980’s.

When I went up to check on our morning tea….. OH MY!

They must have spotted E.T. and thought that E.T. was another form of an enemy like the Daleks because there was smoke everywhere! What a commotion!

The Tardis was smoking like it was ready to explode!    And when the smoke cleared, what was in the background but the Vincent Van Gough Exploding Tardis fabric.

Now how could they think that this sweet alien was an enemy?

After getting things under control and convincing them that ET is a friend, tea was poured.
Reese’s Pieces were offered in the same spirit as when E.T. handed them to Elliot as a peace offering in the movie.

Quote: I’ll be right here” from the ET movie, 1982

Today’s Tea: “Exploding Tardis” from Adagio Tea was my favorite of all of the Tardis blends.  It is being sipped from a double walled glass V shape tea glass.
White Peony- Golden Liqueur, warm and floral like fruit blossoms. Green Rooibos Blueberry- Blueberries, cranberries, rosehips, hibiscus and raspberry leaves blended for a tasty, berry-licious treat. Lemon Grass- delicate lemon flavor, hint of sweet ginger and uplifting floral aroma. Accent of Peppercorn for that added boom.
Cheers and Happy Sipping!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Tea Party in a Box!

Team Oolong

TT Blog Tea Party Today and a Tea Party in a Box!

The TT Blog Tea Party is happening NOW!  Welcome!  Put your kettle on and pour a cup and please say hello in our comments so we can raise our teacup to welcome you.

It’s not possible to invite all of you to come to my home, so the TT Blog Tea Party is a way for all of us to share a day to put the kettle on and enjoy a cup or two of tea and stop to think of tea friends and raise our cup to them…..

I will always remember the first phone call I received after joining ATAA.  It was from Eve to welcome me and a suggestion to have a long distance tea party while we chatted.  We each put the kettle on and steeped a pot of tea and talked and talked.  Since then, many pots/cups of tea have been shared while chatting in person, via phone, email or snail mail with many members that have become friends through the years.   It is just natural to put the kettle on when calling or writing or emailing these friends now. 

So it seemed a grand way to welcome “The Tardis” by celebrating long distance tea parties with friends.  But instead of phone calls this time, the Tardis made deliveries to England, France, Pennsylvania, Kentucky,  Ohio, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, Minnesota, Arizona, Wisconsin, Texas, Kansas, Washington, Oregon and several parts of California to drop off packages so you all can join the doctor and his new companion (me) for a welcoming tea party.

Denise in England shared about a tea party in a box on her blog.   Andrea in France sent me a wonderful tea party in a box with the last TT.   Marilyn in Portland blogged about a tiny tea party in a box.  All of these friends left me wanting to send a “Tea Party in a Box” to tea friends.  This seemed the perfect time to send one to friends I’ve become more closely acquainted with through tea.

It is to celebrate the Tardis and Dr. Who with some of his favorite treats imported from England-- Jammie Dodgers and Jelly Babies. 

4th Doctor Quote: ‘Would you like a jelly baby?”

The tea is one of the Tardis blends from Adagio Teas.  The English bone china tea mug is a favorite, a gift from Linda.

Our kettle will be bubbling all day long so that the blog party can be enjoyed in every time zone.  You are invited to put your kettle on and join us anytime or many times today.

I’ll be wearing the beautiful cobalt blue color of the Tardis with this vintage Alice Lund signed necklace from Denmark from one of my favorite time periods….the mid-century modernist years.

Thank you so much for joining in our TT Blog Tea Party!

I loved sending these little tea parties in a box to friends.  I hope it will inspire you to think about making your own to share with someone special.

Cheers and Happy Sipping!


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Team Oolong Blog Tea Party

Team Oolong 

A Blog Tea Party

When Rain shared that she had chosen *The Tardis* teapot for our adventure I knew it was going to be a fun ride that I wanted to be a part of.  She said that a TARDIS was perfectly suited to go spinning out into the world to travel around and share tea with people.

The Tardis spun to CA this week bringing special gifts made in Ohio.  Thank you for such thoughtful and fun things, Teresa! 

Everyone is invited to join in our Blog Tea Party by putting your kettle on and enjoying a cup of tea this Friday, January 22, to welcome The Tardis to The OC!   It will last all day and night to accommodate all time zones.

Caveat: I will be taking some liberties in interpretations along this journey.  Some posts I will be asking the Tardis to spin me off to a different time period or to a place I would love to be transported to.   A special way of tea or a special piece of jewelry to wear to tea might be shared.  Some posts will be my own spoof or fun with a theme from Dr. Who -- so please just join in the fun and surprise of it all with me! 

See you here on Friday!

Cheers and Happy Sipping!


Sunday, January 17, 2016

From Dreary Ohio to Sunny California

Sadly, the teapot has been packed carefully and shipped to the next hostess.
I have enjoyed hosting the teapot and sharing a bit of my corner of the world with all of you.  It has been a whirlwind of activity since the teapot arrived.  I will be happy to have some time to unwind and just stay home for a bit.  My vacuum cleaner and dusting rag need to be put to use.  I have one last bit of holiday decor to pack away until next year, my Christmas village.
There is a tea room along the village street . . .
And a tea cart by the carolers.

I want to thank all of you for the kind words and comments.  At times, I was writing my blog post in the middle of the night with one eye propped open, hoping to have time in the morning to proofread.  Unfortunately, many times I remembered to post, just as I headed out the door. Proofreading was just an intention.  Often times, I didn't read comments.  Now that I have some free time, I hope to go back and take some time to do just that.

Times shared with friends during afternoon tea are like mini vacations for me.  A HUGE thank you to Eve and her dear husband Bob for sharing their hospitality.  I could have written so much more about our visit.  I have a pot of her soup on the stove right now for tonight's dinner.

If you are ever in Ohio, please stop for tea.  I am happy to welcome you to my home or meet you at any of our area tea rooms.  (I can recommend my favorites in northwest Ohio and southern Michigan.)   I have met the nicest people over a teacup.
Enjoy the rest of Downton Abbey!  I hope I can hold out and not watch the ending until it airs on television.  I am finding I am one of the few original Downton Abbey Ladies, having watched every episode as it aired on US television.

Have fun Martha, and all the future hostesses.  I am looking forward to reading about your adventures with the teapot.
Hats off to Rainy and LaDonna for coordinating the traveling teapot.  A huge thanks to both of you!

Sips and Smiles,
Teresa and the Teapot

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Eve's Teapot Tour

Grab your cup and saucer, make a pot of tea (a big pot) and settle in as you join us on our tour of a few of Eve's teapots.  I am not a teapot expert and hopefully Eve will let me know if anything I am posting is not correct.  As you can see, it was a lot to take in and sometimes I was so engrossed in the story, I forgot to take notes.  Eve has over 450 teapots and over 180 of them are on display.  She began collecting back in 1980 with a Price Kensington teapot.  After she acquired three teapots, she realized she had a collection.
Display cabinet between the dining and kitchen
Other half of the cabinet
(I love all the Disney teapots!)
Ronald Reagan Hall teapot
Margaret Thatcher
This adorable teapot has no lid as it fills from the bottom, as you can see in the photo below.

Yixing teapot
One of her many cabinets full of teapots!
Queen Elizabeth
Walking Ware Teapot
and sugar bowl
Aviator Mickey Mouse - Bob is a retired airplane pilot
Eve's childhood dish set.  Notice the teapot and tea strainer.  The teapot really whistles!
Miss October 2011
When I got home, I pulled out my old Collectible Teapot Calendars and The Wicked Witch was indeed in the calendar.
The Jungle Book
In this room, Eve displays her teapots among her books, keeping to the theme of the books.
Mrs. Potts and Chip
The teapot with Eve's phone booth, among the English book collection.
Travel in England books along with a British Taxi teapot.
Even the top of the bookshelves hold teapots.
We reminisced a bit about the old wringer washing machines when she shared this teapot.
Eve has an amazing collection
This white teapot with the salt glazed pewter lid dates prior to 1800
Eve has only seen one other teapot like this.
Pink mini Wedgwood
The teapoy, or tea canister on the left holds dry tea.
This child's set really works.
Eve's favorite teapot is the pink trimmed Neptune Belleek with a second black mark.
In front is anther Belleek with a third black mark.  She said these make the best tea and keep it warm.
This Prince Charles cup has an ear handle.
Wedgwood Black Basalt with widow of Zarephath finial
Queen Victoria Copeland Spode
King George V and Queen Mary
King Edward and Queen Alexandra
Wedgwood King George VI and Queen Elizabeth
Wedgwood Queen Elizabeth in Royal Blue Jasper
Edward VIII
Shelley Children's tea ware
Antique European teapot dating 1790-1815 from France or Germany
Holds 3.5 - 4 ounces
George VI Teacup and Saucer
Commemorated a visit to Canada in 1939
Wedgwood Creamware
Diplomatic Souvenir Gift to some of the US Party
Part of a limited 500 issue
Cream and non lidded sugar
SYP - Simple . . . yet perfect
Tilting Teapot invented by Lord Peter Dundonald of Scotland
The teapot is tipped on it's side to brew the tea, then stood upright to separate the leaves from the tea.
Tea Party scene in Alice In Wonderland Pop Up Book by Robert Sabuda
Eve's Teaware served as the model for this Collectible Teapot Puzzle
Tinkerbell Tea Set
Very rare red Wedgwood teapot
The Eccentric Teapot Book and teapot
Eve is also a writer, having been featured in many tea magazines.
She has Writer's Desk teapots in four sizes.
Eve shared a delightful story about her delivery of Gerard Merlot Macarons
Eve's writing desk was made to her specifications by Mr. Keim, an Amish man from Applecreek, Ohio.  It is made of Ohio cherry and since she couldn't decide if she wanted a finial, it is removable!
Eve's King Edward teapot was on a shelf in an English antique shop, waiting on shipment to her.  The shop owner had purchased the teapot at an auction for her.  He called to ask if she would mind having her teapot photographed for the Novelty Teapot Collectors book.

Eve is a retired OB nurse.  These two paintings by P Buckley Moss feature nurses.  Eve has them hanging near her desk.
Not only do you find a huge collection of tea pots at Eve's she also features her passion in her home decor.  I instantly fell in love with this curtain!
Eve also played a selection on her player piano for us.
All too soon it was time to say goodbye, but the teapot and I had a wonderful day at Eve's!

A HUGE thank you to Eve and Bob Dear for opening their home to me.  I wish I lived closer so we could share tea more often.  Thank you for coming along on our visit.

Sips and Smiles,
Teresa and the Teapot