The Beauty and Grace of Taking Tea

“Tea is a daily companion that never fails us.  It warms when we ~ or the world~ feel cold, gives strength when we’re weary, and lends delicious grace notes to our gatherings.” ~ Kim Waller

Good morning, dear friends.  I am so happy to see you and hope you will enjoy our time together this morning.

Do you ever wish certain things could talk?  Oh, I do ~ many things.  I believe it would be fascinating to hear from old houses, barns, quilts, and furniture ~ just to name a few.  But, I especially wish teacups could talk.  I look at my teacups and wonder, “Who loved them, what were their lives about, and what calamities of life  did they endure?”  But, mainly  I wonder about the friends who shared pieces of their lives over cups of tea.  I believe I would have enjoyed knowing them.  And, perhaps they are pleased I am the current caretaker of their treasured teacups.

“I like to… think about the houses and the drawing rooms, the kitchens and the cupboards where the teacups were kept.  And the people who cared for them and what they thought and felt and loved and lost.  For as a wise French writer once said, ‘The reconstitution of the past is a delicate pleasure of which one should not be deprived.” ~ Geraldene Holt 

My enjoyment of taking tea most likely goes back to times spent with my grandmother as a little girl.  If I close my eyes for a moment, I can clearly see her kitchen and the table where we shared many cups of tea.  She would fix my tea with milk and sugar and always in a pretty cup and saucer.  We would chat and there would be a goodie of some sort to enjoy.  I felt so special.  As I grew older, my mom and I loved to visit antique shops and estate sales.  Mom schooled me on pretty tea wares and quality china.  This ‘schooling’ led to my collecting teacups and saucers, teapots, and far too many other delicate beauties.  

“We always had our tea out of those blue cups when I was a little girl…” ~ Willa Cather

(via dainty blue tea cup | Flickr - Photo Sharing!)

The teapot is on, the cups are waiting, favorite chairs anticipating.  No matter what I have to do, my friend, there’s always time for you.” ~ unknown

While it is dreadfully hard for me to pass up a lovely china teacup and saucer at a sale or antique shop, taking tea is about far more than the tea or lovely tea wares.  It is about slowing down ~ enjoying a bit of serenity in our chaotic world, and perhaps, offering the same to a friend.  Taking tea…a lovely and thoughtful tradition, available to us all, and it only cost a little of our time.   Yoli Brogger reminds us ~ “Tea is a ceremony of loveliness.”  I truly believe, as humans, we crave such loveliness in our lives.  It is important to our well being.

“Beauty is all around us, of course.  Our world, with all its sordid problems, still brims with breathtaking loveliness.  And one of the benefits of the teatime ritual is that of slowing us down enough to notice what is beautiful around us.” ~ Emilie Barnes

I will tell you, I don’t believe anyone loves gorgeous china and its beauty more than I do.  But, if you love it also and have ideas of starting a collection of tea wares, consider shopping thrift stores, garage sales, estate sales, and antique shops.  One can quickly accumulate a lovely assortment of beautiful china teacups without spending a fortune and they do not have to match.   In fact, one of the most beautiful afternoon teas I ever attended, the hostess had an exquisite assortment of delicate china teacups and plates all unmatched.  This had a charm all of its own and the guests were invited to select their teacup and dessert plate.

english-country-style: “Tea for 100! ”

The loving hostess of this beautiful afternoon tea well understood her invitation was about far more than her tea wares.  She invited her guests because she wanted time with us and she wanted us to savor our moments together. She had created beauty for everyone to enjoy.  People grow and flourish when they are surrounded by beauty.  It wakes up our sensitivity so that we become more aware of beauty. Even though this afternoon happened many years ago, I will always cherish the memories and feel blessed by the gift of beauty and grace from such an intimate and lovely tea.

“My dear, if you could give me a cup of tea to clear my muddle of a head I should better understand your affairs.” ~ Charles Dickens

As I begin to close this post, I’m thinking there remains so much to talk about.  The many types of teas, ideas for tea gatherings,  and stories.  The story of a most special tea service gifted to me by my husband, a lovely teapot that belonged to a dear friend, and the blue rimmed teacups from oatmeal boxes, which my grandmother collected and now belong to me.  All to be shared in later posts.   Meanwhile, I hope you will take time to slow down, brew a pot of tea for yourself or a friend, listen to birdsong and notice the beauty around you.   The land is beginning to wake up ~ we don’t want to miss a single bloom. 

“Tea quenches tears and thirst.” ~   Jeanine Larmoth and Charlotte Turgeon

 

 

Wishing you sunshine, blue skies, and sweet surprises!

 

Au Revoir,

Sandra

 

 

 

Images: via Tumblr, Pinterest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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12 Comments on "The Beauty and Grace of Taking Tea"

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Maristella
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WOWWWW!!Your post made me swoon!!!Absolutely gorgeous!!!Hugs,dear Sandra!

Pam Richardson
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Sandra, what a delight to spend time with you! I can’t wait for more, this would make a beautiful series. Each photo and quote are stunning! But your lovely thoughts and memories are the best! Thank you for bringing beauty each time you share. Perfection dear friend!

Penny at Enjoying The Simple Things
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Penny at Enjoying The Simple Things

I would love to sit down with you and chat over a cup of tea!

jeanie
Guest
Sandra, this is a post of perfection. And it brought back so many memories — tea with my mom, tea with friends, giving teas. For a couple of years a friend and I would host a make-and-take tea where we would first lead our small group of ten in some project they could take home (painting silk scarves, wreath making) and then go up for a fully laid English tea with sweets, savories and scones. The party itself was fun, but even more so was getting together to make the treats, design the table, combine our china. No, the cups… Read more »
Shannon@Belle Bleu Interiors
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Shannon@Belle Bleu Interiors

Sandra, I was feeling a little overwhelmed this afternoon. I had just brewed a cup of tea to sip while I read my favorite blogs. I needed a few moments to step away from the stresses of life. How appropriate your beautiful post was for this occasion! I can’t wait to read more of your tea time posts. Enjoy your week, sweet friend!

bonnie morgan
Guest

What a lovely time I just had reading your words and viewing pretty images. I look forward to more.

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