Hot Tea Month Blog-a-thon ~ Week 3

Click on the image to get to the Hot tea Month blog…

Week Three: January 17th-23rd
Our topic for week three of the blog-a-thon is:

“If I could have my own Tea House this is how I would run things…..”

If I ran my own tea room I would want it to be a wonderful experience for anyone who walked through the door. I would not want my guests to feel hurried or ignored so I would limit my tea room to one seating a day. That seating would be for a group of 6 to 12. I might consider two groups of 4 or 2 groups of 6. It would only be open on Saturday. Hey since we’re being hypothetical I have the freedom to plan unrealistically. My tea room would not make any money but I would be happy at the end of the day. Everything would be fresh and made to order. The food would be something that people would remember. Everyone’s tea would be served hot for every cup they sip. Cups would not be dry for longer then a few seconds. My guests would be treated well and their experience would put a smile on their face.

Photobucket is holding all my photos that I stored on their site from 2007-2015 hostage replacing them with ugly grey and black boxes and asking for a large ransom to retrieve them. It is a slow process to go through all my posts deleting the ugly boxes.

BooMama’s Before and After ~


It’s a before and after project. So all you have to do is post about something you want to re-do, re-decorate, clean up, etc. and then do it before July 25th and re-post your before and after results. How cool and motivating is that. To get the official scoop click over to BooMama.

Here’s what I’m going to try to do.

1. Create an inviting atmosphere on my deck in Seattle (I’m in our condo in So. California right now but I get to be at my home in Seattle from July 1st – August 15th )


2. Do a thorough cleaning of my Seattle home since my adult children have been “taking care of it” while I’m in Southern California.

3. Show some photos of our huge project…redoing the basement. My husband only has 3 weeks in Seattle so I don’t know what we’ll be able to accomplish but I will show the progress…

Here are some photos of the torn up basement. We had some water issues so this was a “have to do” project! The hard part about my husband completing this project is that we are living 1200 miles away right now because of his job.


So I hope to show you some great changes July 25th!

Photobucket is holding all my photos I stored with them from 2007-2015 hostage. They have blacked out all those photos on my blog posts. OH BOTHER! I’m slowly cleaning up my posts.

The Russian Pouring Teapot ~ Samovar

I came across these very old Paintings of Russians drinking tea (chai) and I wanted to share them. This first photo is from 1889.

I would love to own one of these older Samovars. See the glasses on the bowls. She is pouring the hot water into the glasses with a strong steep of tea. The concentrate of tea is in a small pot that fits on top of the Samovar.

“Of all beverages, tea alone has the proverbial power to relieve toska, the sadness and melancholy which traditionally burden the Russian spirit. The samovar which dispenses it is a time-honoured symbol of Russian hospitality. It stands for the hearth, the warmth of a Russian welcome, the restorative powers of a glass of tea around the stove after hours in sub-zero temperatures. The word means ‘self-boiler’ and the samovar is just that, a portable water heater made traditionally of brass and fuelled with pine cones or charcoal. On top of it rests a teapot containing a powerful infusion. To pour a glass of tea, a little of this concentrate is diluted with boiling water from the urn. This way it is always fresh never stewed.”


After serving the tea the guests will pour the tea out of their glasses into their bowls and sip the tea from the bowl. This is how I remember drinking tea with my grandparents and relatives growing up. We had tea glasses and bowls. Here’s another quote from The Food and Cooking of Russia by Leslie Chamberlain.


“Sadly, the modern Samovar is a plug-in electrical device distinquished by its mass production shoddiness and the fact that no one wants to buy it. It is perhaps a fitting epitaph on the death of a culture. In the nineteenth century the samovar and the tea glass holder, found in daily use in the lowliest and the richest households, inspired some of the finest secular silverwork ever produced in Russia.” This is one of my Samovars that is an electric one, modern and mostly made for the tourist trade. They are pretty to have around but not the older genuine article. Here are the tea glass holders spoken of in the quote, podstakanik.



In this painting again they are drinking tea from the bowl. Statistically the Russians are among the world’s top three tea-drinking nations (with Britain and Japan).

Can you see the Teapots on the table that look similar to mine above? I was excited to see this.


Now the next photograph is a group of modern Russians getting the samovar ready at my brother’s reception to celebrate his marriage.


My nephew Joe, my brother Tim, my husband, my BIL Steve, and my son Daniel. A couple of these guys aren’t Russian by blood but they have embraced part of our culture anyway.

They had to stoke it up outside because it was causing some problems and not wanting to light.

For more posts on the Pouring Teapot hop over to LaTeaDah’s.

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and they have blacked them all out. I’m slowly working at restoring my posts without their help. Such a tiresome bother!

Tea Rooms ~ The Gilded Rose

This weeks theme is Tea Rooms and Ventures. In April my family met at the Gilded Rose Manor Tea House in Northridge, California to celebrate my mother’s 85th birthday.


I love the fact that the Tea House street address is on Devonshire St. It sounds so English and creamy 🙂

There are several different table settings. There are 3 areas of service. The Rose Salon is the largest area,  the Atrium is a little separated from the Rose Salon, and then the Blue Willow Parlor is a private side room that accomodates up to 14 people. We were in the Blue Willow Parlor.

The Blue Willow Parlor with my sisters, mom, and nieces.

The Rose Salon

Rose Salon

The Atrium

We had assorted scones with Devon Cream and Lemon curd and then a variety of tea sandwiches.

Our dessert platter with another fun assortment of goodies.

Although these tea pots aren’t the dainty variety that really served the purpose well, especially with these great warmers that they sat on. Our tea was the perfect temperature to the last drop of each pot. The gift shop at the Gilded Rose sells these, too.


The Gilded Rose has a nice gift shop. Besides all these fun Tea Pots and Cups they sell Tea Magazines, Cards, cake plates, baked goods, accessories. They also have a wonderful collection of loose tea for sale.

We all had a nice time here.

For more Tea Rooms and Ventures visit LaTeaDah at Gracious Hospitality.

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and they have blacked them all out. I’m slowly working at restoring my posts without their help. Such a tiresome bother!

Set The Tea Table ~ Bavarian Dishes

Some of you know already that I’m living in a small condo in Southern California right now and my regular home with my kids and my stuff is in the Seattle Area of Washington. Most of my tea goodies and entertaining goodies are in Washington. I didn’t have any tea-cups and saucers in California until today! Look at the bargain I found at a thrift store in our little downtown today.


6 cups and saucers, 6 dessert plates, 5 salad plates, and a creamer. It’s Bavarian H & Co. china. Now here’s the real exciting thing, I got all of this for $15.00!! Now I’m going to be able to have a fun tea here in California with the goodies I found today and with what I can add from the condo stash. Here’s my mock tea table without food.




The inside of the tea-cups are iridescent.


“Take some more tea,” the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly. “I’ve had nothing yet,” Alice replied in an offended tone: “so I can’t take more.” “You mean you can’t take less,” said the Hatter: “it’s very easy to take more than nothing.” ~ Lewis Carroll ~ Alice In Wonderland

Oh and the store threw this Bavarian bowl in for nothing!

You can click over to LaTeaDah’s to see more Tables Set for Tea.

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and they have blacked them all out. I’m slowly working at restoring my posts without their help. Such a tiresome bother!

Tea Blogathon ~ Set the Table Pink & Green

This is my third tea table. I’m using some of my archive photos since I’m not at my home in Seattle where all my goodies are to set a new table.

I have a lot of pink and green accessories and enjoy setting a table in these colors.


My China is Royal Albert Moss Rose.


For more Tables set for tea visit Gracious Hospitality.

I made a wonderful find today at a local thrift store so I have one more Set the Table post for tomorrow!

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and they have blacked them all out. I’m slowly working at restoring my posts without their help. Such a tiresome bother!

Set the Table, Tea is On!

This weeks tea challenge for the Gracious Hospital-I-Tea Blog-a-thon is to share a creative afternoon tea table, linens, serving pieces, teapots and teacup, etc. This is your opportunity to show the world the fun you have when you create your own special tea experience.

I have 3 tea settings to share from previous posts. My first one I’m sharing is my Tea for One.


In the past I’ve collected napkin rings. This silver ring with the E on it is my personal napkin ring. The little tea pot is from Russia and has a huge matching pot that I’ll show during “The Pouring Teapot”. I have a couple little tea mugs instead of tea cups with saucers. The white/clear depression glass plates and creamer and sugar are from our handed down stash from Dear’s side of the family. The silverplate candy dish was a wedding gift.


The Tablecloth is one of several vintage ones I have from my MIL’s collection.


“Tea to the English is really a picnic indoors.”
Alice Walker

A beautiful afternoon for tea…

For more “Set the Table” posts visit Gracious Hospitality.

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and they have blacked them all out. I’m slowly working at restoring my posts without their help. Such a tiresome bother!

Hospital-i-Tea Blogathon ~ Favorite Tea

April 27 – May 3
Tell about your favorite tea. How do you prepare it and serve it? Milk and sugar? Plain? What are some of your best memories of serving or sipping on this tea.

Truth be told I generally enjoy tea steeped with a tea bag. If I am going to steep loose tea I enjoy a good Earl Grey or English Breakfast Tea. I always have to make sure I have good ole Lipton tea bags around for my family especially my brother Leonard. Some of my sisters have moved on to herbal teas. When I was younger I put lots of sugar and milk in my tea. These days I drink most of my hot beverages black with no sweeteners. In honor of this weeks assignment Dear and I went to Cost Plus bought a tin of Twinings Earl Grey Loose Tea and steeped ourselves a cuppa this afternoon. Lovely…


My best memories of tea are from my childhood when I’d have tea with my maternal grandmother. Also whenever we get together with my side of the family we enjoy tea at the end of our meals together. Sometimes I’ll have it black, sometimes with lemon, and sometimes with milk. Then the next best memory of tea is when I travelled to England for the first time in 1973. We were part of a Christian Rock band singing at local schools and churches. We would be housed by local families who were interested in our ministry. How very special it was to have a knock on the bedroom door in the morning, open the door and see a tray with a teapot steeping and tea cups and milk to get us started in the morning. What a wonderful treat and memory. I also love how when staying at Bed and Breakfasts in England we’ve been greeted with tea upon our arrival. This next photo is of our daughter enjoying a cup of welcome tea in our flat in Edinburgh.


I’d love that beautiful blue and white tea set! Tea is always a welcome refreshment when I am tired and after travelling a long way.


For more Tea Posts visit LaTeDah at Gracious Hospitality.

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage and they have blacked them all out. I’m slowly working at restoring my posts without their help. Such a tiresome bother!