The Ladies' Tea Guild

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Busy days.

Christina and I making the tea. 
Oh my gosh, it's been something like a month since I last posted!  A lot has been going on.

First, we had our 6th annual Cat Rescue Tea in San Jose, and it was another success!  We served about 120 people over 2 days, and raised close to $5,000 for 13th Street Cats!

I made 8 batches of Meyer lemon curd, and coordinated a bunch of other things, including jam donations, tea donations (from Satori Tea Bar and Thompson Tea Company), and put together 2 afternoon tea baskets for the silent auction, as well as collected a bunch of other tea things for the raffle for both days.  I also helped make tea sandwiches, served the lemon curd, jam, and butter, and with my friend Christina, made all the tea that was served at the event.

the "afternoon tea" fascinator I made.
I also made a little hat/fascinator for the silent auction.  I used some scraps of a type of straw fabric from another hat that I cut up, for the base, a scrap of silver-colored fabric to cover the base, and used ribbon from my stash to make a pleated edge, and rosettes and leaves and a bow on the top.  I found some doll house things at the craft store: a "silver" tea tray, cup/saucer, and plate of sweets, and sewed them to the front of the fascinator. It has an elastic band on the underside, that is meant to go behind the back of the head so that the fascinator tilts forward over the forehead.
one of the afternoon tea baskets.
Photo: Elizabeth Urbach
I was hoping it would tempt the people who attend the tea in costume (because they rarely, if ever, buy raffle tickets or bid on silent auction items), and get lots of bids, but it only got one bid, and it was from someone else.  Oh well.  I thought it was cute, and I made it all by hand.  The afternoon tea baskets, on the other hand, were some of the most popular silent auction items!

the "dancing llama" from Lyric Theatre's
_La Perichole_.  Photo: Alicia Grugett
The same week and weekend of the tea, I was working with Lyric Theatre on costumes for _La Perichole_, and the costume designer wasn't able to be at the theater after opening night.  I had to handle any quick-changes, ironing, and costume malfunctions, like when the dancing llama's head fell off!  Luckily there wasn't anything major, that wasn't fixable with hot glue or pins. Mostly ironing, wrangling hoop skirts, and pinning actors into their costumes.

my grandparents' wedding photo from 1945.
Also at the same time, my grandmother passed away, at age 97. She'd been fairly healthy until the past few years, and we'd just had to get her 24-hour care in her home (she hated hospitals and care homes).  I saw her on her 97th birthday in January, and she was weak, but healthy and alert, and talking up a storm with her visitors.  The next month, however, things started going down hill, and her last 2 weeks went really quickly.  I was afraid I'd become a basket case and have to bow out of all my commitments, but keeping busy kept me sane.  I couldn't take any time off work to process things, but I guess I'll process them later ...

Now, it's time to start the Easter baking, after having spent a few hours on my taxes ... There will be Italian cuccidate, biscotti, my great-aunt's Cocoa-Anise cookies, and Italian Easter Bread, which I made for the first time last Easter, and my grandmother approved of it.  I'll collapse later ... 


Steph said...

Glad your cat charity tea went so well!

South Bay Ladies' Tea Guild said...

Thanks, Steph! It's a lot of work but a lot of fun, too.

Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast,
Let fall the curtains, wheel the sofa round,
And, while the bubbling and loud-hissing urn
Throws up a steamy column, and the cups
That cheer but not inebriate, wait on each,
So let us welcome peaceful evening in.
-- William Cowper (1731-1800)
"The Winter Evening" (Book Four), _The Task_ (1784)