Party ideas: Grown up Tea Party

I love to host a gathering but I don’t need to do an expensive, lavish affair to make it fun. I’m not being filmed on a reality show after all. I also don’t enjoy spending all day in the kitchen so I do take a bit of a short cut. It’s less about the what and more about the intent which is to have fun.

So if you want to have a girls night, couples night or whatever, I’ll be sharing some fun theme party/small gathering ideas and general tips to help you make it a fun affair.

First up: A Grown up Tea Partytea party

I did this with my girls one Christmas Holiday season but this is a great idea for the spring season or even summer season as well. I combined my holiday event with a white elephant party but I made it special by doing my own English style high tea party.


  • Tea sandwiches- It’s a good option to make a couple of these as a savory option to all the sweets. Unless you’re serving high level foodies, I suggest keeping it simple for people not as used to high tea.
  • Scones with clotted cream- I simply went to a gourmet grocery store to get the scone mix, clotted cream and fancy jam. World Market is a good option.scones
  • Fruit- grapes, orange slices
  • Dessert- Petit fours and mini cookies. I was actually and just went to the French bakery near me. Wegmans and Wholefoods are also good places to get tea cookies.

Drink: Tea of course. I suggest limiting the options to 2 or 3. Also add coffee. For something stronger, offer champagne. For something fancier do mulled wine in the winger. In the spring how about an Aperol Spritz.spritz

Music: I play Christmas music in the background for Christmas. For the spring for fun songs maybe some pop or even old school R&B from the 60s to 90s.

Décor: This is an easy one. Holiday décor of your choice. And burn a cinnamon, vanilla or apple inspired candle. For spring, go for fresh flowers in varying sized vases and burn a candle with a flowery or fruity scent. You can even blend this in with watching the horse races during the spring season and have guest dress in spring dresses and fancy hats.

Extra: If you want to be super special give guest little party gift bags filled with little chocolates or scone mix put in little fancy jars.





Things I learned from my mother

In honor of mother’s day I decided to share some life long lessons I have learned from my mother that has shaped the woman that I am today and can apply to almost anything.

Now my mother didn’t actually tell me everything I am sharing but some of these are implied by how she lives her life.

mom and me

Get out and do something

A funny thing happened with my mom in my teen years. She started to become more active (or so I noticed) in life. She went vacationing overseas, bought a new home. Later she went back to church, started exercising, went to all sorts of shows and events. Even some I begged to join her in but she only wanted to do with “her girls”, making me feel like the mom and she the bratty teen. Even after she retired she kept moving. Made herself a crew (the above mentioned girls) and continued to travel. She even did a solo trip to California for over a week.

When people ask me why I am always down to do hang out or seem to have so much energy, I can say “I get it from my mama”. We have plenty of time to just lay on the couch and watch TV but we only get one life to live.

Keep pursuing the excellence

My mom is a hard worker and expected the best of us. She always encouraged my sister and I to succeed and strive in school and at work and that is a motto I never forgot. She made it clear that we have to give 110% in this world even if other groups didn’t have to work so hard. And she wanted to make sure we had a better life than she did. I never forget that and it has formed my work ethic and led to much success.

Don’t let others limit you

My mom achieved a lot in her career and she never let naysayers/haters or whoever decide what she could and couldn’t do. Because of that spirit I made choices in my life to pursue options that others said weren’t for me. I graduated second in my high school class and did well on my SATs. When I went to my counselor to consider what schools to go to, I was only given local, fourth tiered colleges. I didn’t want to consider that I was only given these options because of my race but it does stay in the back of my mind. Nevertheless, I applied to those fourth tier schools but I also applied to several first tier schools. I even got accepted into an Ivy League university. Had I listened to the counselor I would have short changed myself.

Clean on Saturdays

Well this one is just practical. And though I don’t always do this it makes good sense. Then you can fully enjoy the rest of your weekend, including resting on Sundays. That’s what they are for.

Be giving, even to those who may not deserve it

This is a tough one. I watched my mom on many occasions be giving of her time and money to those who I wasn’t sure really appreciated it or, honestly, deserved it based on their treatment of her. But my mother believed in karma and just continuing to be a good person despite the behavior of others. In the end she has lived a great life because of it. This is a hard one but a lesson I keep at the forefront of mind when I’m ready to be full “Petty LaBelle” like.

Wear control tops

Another practical tip. My mom insists that my sister and I wear control top stockings and other undergarments. She swears that because she’s worn these all of her adult life that this is the reason her stomach is not big. I don’t know if that’s true but I’ve been wearing them since I was a teen.

Cheddar makes it better

And just for fun. My mom insists on loading her baked mac and cheese with cheddar cheese. And I do the same and, yes, it does make it better…

Love your mom!mother's day