Southern teas

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IN the South some things are of utmost importance.Believe it or not a good glass or cup of tea ranks as high priority on that list.Newcomers to the area learn very quickly tea must be brewed and not of an instant variety and, bypassing all diets, it is usually served sweet – very sweet, in fact.

Southern ladies of all ages take quite pride in hosting a “tea” and springtime is the most popular time of year for planning such an event. And though theformalities prove to be years-old, it is still quite a pleasure to those who attend and those who plan.Handwritten invitations sent out two weeks in advance are still popular, lavishing the hosting site with fresh flowers and other decor is a must and preparing finger foods to go with the tea is thoroughly delightful.

Passing those pleasures on this last week was the Queen Price Garden Club of Overton as they hosted the club’s 20th Fourth Grade Girl’s Tea Party at the McMillan Memorial Library.

The Club’s Master Gardeners – many of whom are retired teachers – welcomed 58 young ladies and five teachers for an hour of pleasant conversation, refreshments and entertainment.For the first time the tea was attended by not only Overton Elementary but also West Rusk and Leverett’s Chapel Elementary fourth grade girls.

Vine and fresh flower arbors welcomed the ladies into the Ralph Ward Room at the library. Club members visited the tables and refilled teacups with long-spouted pitchers and tea pots. Treats of fresh fruit and pastries were served on glass and porcelain plates atop lattice table mats.

The guest speaker was Overton’s Jimmie Piercy, who shared details of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s children’s classic “The Secret Garden.” The title of the 1911 novel refers to a small patch of land discovered by two children and how it changes in a positive way their attitudes and behavior toward others.The book was reprinted last year with new illustrations by MinaLima.

Twelve highly-decorated tables held centerpieces with no two alike. One centerpiece included a live goldfish! A splash of spring could be seen throughout the room with assorted living flowers, blooms and ivy. Added to the floral colors were rain boots, parasols, candle lanterns, bird houses, Georgian sun bonnets, miniature garden tables and a small wheelchair, all topics in “The Secret Garden.”

At the end of the party, each lady was presented a Desert Rose teacup and saucer from the Garden Club.

“It was absolutely beautiful and the young ladies were such a joy to be around,” said LeAnn Bazar, club secretary. “I just can’t tell you enough how pleasant it was,” she added.

“It was a smashing success,” said Debbie Poole, club president. “All of us loved these little girls. They were so excited even before they got into the room. The club worked really hard for this large group and the girls just made it all worthwhile.”

“I do thank my club for their work, the McMillan Memorial Library staff for allowing us to take over and each school for allowing the girls to attend. I also thank Joe M. Jones and the Kilgore News Herald for the coverage they give to our garden club. It just ran so smoothly and such fun,” she added. “We most certainly will be hosting it again next year.”

WILLOW REHAB & NURSING REHABILITATION honored the women in our lives that have nurtured, cared, and loved us unconditionally by hosting their annual Mother’s Day Lady’s Tea Party. The tea was held on Friday, May 10. Although the weather turned up chilly, it was definitely springtime inside with floral arrangements, refreshments; a variety of teas and ladies donning hats and their “Sunday Best.” It was a beautiful way to acknowledge women who had touched our lives in one fashion or another.

MOTHER’S DAY is this Sunday, May 12. Happy Mother’s Day to all. Ladies let your light shine whether you are a mother or not. It is our day!

May His Love and Laughter Fill Your Hearts and Your Homes Throughout the Week. We may be reached at chitchatlinda@aol.com or 903-984-2593.

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