Thursday, July 30, 2015

Blackberry Tea

For the last few weeks I have been preparing my house  for guests who were coming to spend an afternoon with me. They were driving from quite a distance and it took them several hours to get here so I wanted to make it worth their while by getting everything in the best possible condition and showing my home in the most welcoming atmosphere.

They had heard about my berry teas and were eager to sample some, so my DH picked some fresh blackberries for making tea and for eating.  I simply place a handful of berries in a pot and crush a little them with a spoon before adding boiling water.  The fragrance simply takes your senses away -- maybe to a resort--who knows.

Below: I brought out all the old things I had of Grandma's and others to create the vintage atmosphere. My own things are starting to look vintage as well, so it all blends nicely.

Well, as you probably have experienced, I managed to wreck the entire place by simply removing one piece of furniture from a room and replacing it with another.  As you know, the thigh bone is connected to the knee bone, and everything I did had an effect on everything else. 

 I can't explain how in the world the simple act of removing a small end table caused piles of things in the dining room and the laundry room, but I will attempt it: 

  I noticed the walls behind the little table were dirty so I had to clean them, and then I saw the curtains near the walls had a rip in them so I had to mend them---but I knew better than to take them off the rod and involve myself in trying to put them back, so I mended them while they were hanging.

  Eventually I did get myself out of this mess but it took 7 days of considerable work.  I do not like to complain, but the house is not in good shape, needs a lot of painting, repair and updating.  I am reminded of it each time I start something like this.  This is part of home life.

The two ladies that came were a preachers wife and a preachers wife's friend.  I call her that because she is one of those people that is always supportive of the preachers wives and likes to keep their morale high and keep them encouraged.  (We must seem beleaguered!)

The blackberry tea was the same vivid color as my tea setting.

Here is the table being prepared the night before the Tea

Because one of the ladies owned a tea room and an antique store, I thought it would be a good opportunity to pull out all of Grandmas things and display them in honor of their interests and their visit. They were also on a buying trip for the antique store.  

In reality I live in Grandmas house, because I am using all her furniture and naturally her accessories go well with everything. 

A doll corner.

One of the crochet pieces Grandma used on the back of a living room chair.

Her bedroom furniture.

Above and below--preparing the porch and flower bed for a first impression welcome.

My family is getting ready for the 50th year anniversary of our congregation, when there will be a special get-together, and I am hoping to also have an open house, and this has all helped me in getting ready for that.  As Mary Kate said in ""The Quiet Man": "The house may belong to my brother, but what's in it belongs to me."  I am trying to show the house to a good advantage in the best way I can and I hope everyone enjoys the tour.  I will show pictures of the laundry room and kitchen in another post, as well as pictures of the Afternoon Tea for which I prepared all this.

The tea table set out buffet style for the ladies Bible class this morning.
The porch:

In the bathroom:

I took everything I had packed away that spoke of vintage and teatime, to embelish my home for this special event.  I can always gather it up and put it away again when a different occasion calls for it.

A coat rack that is usually bare for coats and bags, is decorated with some old things.

My scarves displayed on an over-the-door set of doorknob hooks.

The bathroom:

Another angle of Grandma's things in the guest room.

I did not get the sewing room tidy, and a lot of the things stuffed in the shelves are blankets and folded clothing.


It was interesting to bring out all the colors and old things:

One day maybe you will come to tea!

The Guest Room: I even have Grandma's white chenille bedspread and her pillowcases. 

Old pedestal sink (above) and old sewing  basket (below)


Unknown said...

Thankyou for the beautiful tour! I know your must of taken alot of time to make it beautiful for your guests. I can't wait to see more ! Christina

Tricia said...

Your home is just lovely! I am a huge fan of all things pink and shabby chic! I can't wait to see more! Your guests will be so blessed by your hospitality!

Santie said...

It is such a joy to get a glimpse of your home. Is that a sewing basket on legs in the last picture?

Tammy said...

You have a beautiful home and a lovely eye for decorating.
Also, how blessed you are to have so many of your grandmother's things.

Thanks so much for sharing your home with us.

quakerhillfarm said...

Your arrangements are just lovely! Thanks for sharing this part of your life. I am sure your guests felt very welcome! Blessings this day, Lynn

Unknown said...

Thank you for sharing, your home is beautiful, very delicate and inspiring.

Southern Girl said...

Your home is beautifully decorated – it reminds me of my mother’s house. I enjoy having my own cozy room when I visit her but I do find it annoying that there is not an easily available outlet to plug my phone, a dish for my rings & watch, nor an empty surface for my suitcase. Since she never spends time in the room as a visitor, she doesn’t realize that the only place to place items is on the floor (which thankfully, she keeps very clean). I love the way you put out fresh brand-new soap and a wash fluff – my girlfriend does that for me when I visit her 6 hours away. It makes me feel so welcome and that she’s glad I’m there.

SharonR said...

Just beautiful, Lydia.

Gayle said...

You have such a talent for making things look just beautiful. Your home looks very peaceful and pretty. You should really do some posts on how to decorate, I am certain they would be appreciated. Enjoy your company and have a lovely day.

Unknown said...

Everything looks soft and lovely. You have made a wonderful welcoming atmosphere for your guests. It is refreshing to see how you cherish your grandmothers belongings and proudly display them with your own. Your post today is absolutely delightful! thank you for your kindness in sharing!

Lydia said...

We are very keen on technology here so every space has as many places to plug in as you like. One room which I did not show you is especially for anyone who wants to connect.

I am having to return to the old furniture because it does t wear our. All the bedroom and living room furniture I have had has never lasted.

Rhonda said...

Your home is beautiful, I woul to come and have tea with you :)

The Quiet Man is my husband's all time favorite movie

ForHisGlory said...

Your home is so beautiful! I love the tiny ironing board for little visitors. :) Speaking of little ones, I was thinking of how quickly the fresh body wash and shower puff would probably walk away with all the little hands in my house, hehehe! I know one day all the things in my house will stay in place, but then I will miss the little hands. Thanks for sharing and I look forward to more pictures!

anonymous said...

Dear Lydia,

after sampling your wonderful BlackBerry Tea I had to have more. The berries are finally ripening in our area and for the last two mornings I've trod down to the berry patch to pick before the sun heated the day.

This afternoon I prepared high tea for my mother in-law and I. Am happy to relate that your blackberry tea was served over ice was the hit of the tea. The temps were high so thought that refreshing beverage would be best cold. It sure hit the spot. Thank you so much for sharing with us.

Now that there is a good supply of berries in the freezer, hot berry tea will be enjoyed all winter this year!

Thank you again for sharing your peaceful home, the sumptuous and delicious meal you prepared for us and your gracious hospitality. We truly felt honored and blessed to spend the afternoon with you.

Love, Your Friend.

Christine said...

Dear Lydia,
Thank you for taking the time to show off all your efforts to provide such a lovely and welcoming home. As always, your posts help to remind us how we can take what we already own to make our homes comfortable and welcoming. Thank you!
Christine x

Lydia said...

As my more modern furniture and accessories break down over the years I am replacing them with grandmothers things. It is more economical in my situation.

ladypinktulip said...

I so enjoyed this post...what a lovely tour of your home. We have similar
decorating styles. I have made my purchases over the years from thrift
stores and I love that I get real bargains and vintage knick knacks and
even some furniture. Blessings...Kelly Thompson

Lydia said...

Janet, thank you for the comment and I am so glad you like the blackberry tea and will make it at home. I will have a different type of tea next time, amd I hope here will be a next time!

anonymous said...

I find that the older furnishings were made to last much longer then modern day furnitures. That being said, a lot of the way things last is the way they are taken care of or not.
My great grandmother kept her pretty furnishings in the parlor. These rooms were reserved for polite visitations, not unsupervised children. She had rules for all furniture use.
Beautiful old setties (for-runners of today's sofas) lasted because they were made well, but also grandmothers didn't allow the grandchildren to climb or jump upon them.
The backs and arms of the chairs and setties lasted because great grandmother always used a lace chairarm and chairback cover to protect those areas from oily hair and rough treatment. I used to think they only looked quaint, but now I see the wisdom in using them.

When we were married 46 yrs ago, one of our wedding gifts was an item similar to your barrel sewing basket. Ours is a magazine rack which sits upright on three legs and I decided to take the divider out of it and use it as a planter to hold a houseplant.


Leanne said...

Thank you for the tour of your lovely home.

living from glory to glory said...

What a lovely tour of your home! I really enjoyed and appreciate it when someone works so hard to make my visits very welcoming! I am sure they thought it was all very lovely!
I do like it when I know I am having a special event or company, as it does encourage me to do some deep cleaning and as you did rearrange some things. I did get a good chuckle when you said you just removed one little table.
Your home is lovely and well taken care of and being home makes it possible to enjoy it!
Thank you, Roxy