As many of you who follow my blog already know, my 1885 Victorian home is named Ashton House after its builder and first owner, Thomas Ashton. This week, it was the site of a lovely tea party with two of my dearest friends, Merry and Belinda (Thank you, Belinda, for giving me the title idea for this post). A day spent with these two kind souls is always a treat. It was the perfect excuse to get out all of my vintage china tea cups, plates, sugar bowls, honey pots, and of course, English teas. Here are but a few of the selections...
We also enjoyed sipping pink lemonade with a splash of grenadine...
We indulged in tiny petit fours...
....Cucumber watercress sandwiches
....Red Velvet cake brownies among other goodies
But the most splendid of all sweets had to be the heavenly rose-water macarons filled with lemon creme that Merry made! Can you believe that this was her first attempt at making these Parisian-style delicacies? I've heard that people go to special schools just to learn how to make them and here she made these absolutely gorgeous gems herself. I have tasted Laduree's famous macarons from Paris and I must say Merry's rival them in both beauty and flavor...Can you tell that I have a slight obsession with macarons?
For lunch, Merry treated us to her scrumptious spinach bacon quiche and homemade wheat bread, and Belinda made the most delicious fruit salad with strawberries, kiwi, pineapple, grapes, peaches, and bananas blended with a refreshing light peach pie filling. I don't think a real tea room could have served a more delicious lunch!
After lunch, we opened our gifts. Yes, can you believe Merry and Belinda also came bearing gifts?! Their generosity always amazes me. Belinda designed and made these enchanting button bags herself with the most adorable button fabric. What a clever idea! I love how she embellished it with the two flowers at the bottom.
Inside the bag were these colorful buttons. I was so delighted to receive such a creative gift as I believe one can never have too many buttons!
Belinda also gave us this set of handy set of lighted sewing tools. I've already used the seam ripper and it works great.
Merry gifted us with this alluring assortment of wool roving that I already have plans for.
A talented jam and jelly-maker, she also gave us two jars of homemade strawberry rhubarb jam. Yum! I'm not sure I can ever go back to store-bought jam and jelly after being spoiled by her scrumptious preserves! The aqua berry basket pictured is actually ceramic rather than cardboard and always makes a nice serving piece.
With such a fun gathering, it was sad to see it come to an end, but thanks to Belinda and Merry, I'll have some wonderful memories of Ashton House's first tea party. For more fun pics of our day, visit Belinda's blog here or Merry's blog here.