Sunday, May 30, 2010

Hello TEA Friends,

We have begun the countdown to the third annual Jane Austen Festival in Louisville Kentucky. Held July 10th and 11th at the Historic Locust Grove estate, this year's events will include our favorites from last year's: afternoon tea, fashion show, Regency Shops and the original outdoor shopping venue, Meryton, although five new vendors have been added. One of the new additions is Kentucky Fine Tea Ware. (We are sure to put a few extra coins in our reticules for this adventure.)

The guest speaker this year is Kim Wilson, author of "Tea with Jane Austen" and "In the Garden with Jane Austen". (The former is the reference guide for those interested in both subjects . . . together!) I have read and reread my copies - I find it works to have a few spread about the house - and am looking forward to learning as much about gardening and Jane as I did about tea and Jane.

In addition, Greg Maedon, the creator of the bonnets for the upcoming PBS documentary on Dolly Madison, will also speak both days and bring those lovely bonnets for display.

For more information, see the Jane Austen Festival page on the website of the Louisville Chapter of the Jane Austen Society, North America. You'll find a list of events and recommendations for local hotels and bed and breakfasts. For more fun, click on the Festival's Media page and run the 30 second video. You'll know for sure why you must attend!

We've included a picture (top) from last year's event of the Regional Coordinator, festival organizer and ultimate hostess, Bonny Wise, with the dashing Mr. Darcy (Brian Cushing). New this year (photo below), is the 19th Century Doctor in residence (Albert Roberts). I do feel as though I shall find an occasion not to be well sometime during our stay.

For a full description of last year's event, see BTS' account from August, 2009, Jane Austen Festival at Locust Grove.

Happy Holiday Weekend and hope to see you in the Regency Period in July!

Yours in TEA and Friendship,


Saturday, May 29, 2010

Happy Memorial Day Weekend from Pemberly Pines Tea Gardens

Hello TEA Friends,

This weekend, at our up north retreat, Pemberly Pines, we set out to "improve" the landscape. With ambitions not quite as high as Mr. Rushworth's planned alterations for Sotherton, and without the expertise or cost of Mr. Repton, my husband and I set about turning some of the back acreage into a rustic tea garden and vineyard.

Inspired by Light of Day teas and some fellow tea bloggers, I, too, am growing a tea plant in the north. Way outside its comfort hardiness zone of 8, we've planted a Camellia sinensis plant in northern Michigan's zone 4. Nestled firmly in its cedar planter home, we'll take care to move our tea plant indoors when the weather turns cool. Although it will take awhile before we get much of a harvest from our own Camellia sinensis, we've also planted a number of herbs including chamomile and spearmint. With that, we can begin enjoying tisanes under the pines immediately.

As of yet, we have no further plans for improvements of the grounds, although a hermitage walk near the pond does sound appealing.

Sotherton, Pemberley, tea and tea gardens. . . this can only mean one thing: we have begun the countdown to the third annual Jane Austen Festival in Louisville, Kentucky. Rachel and I have already made our reservations. This year's featured speaker is Kim Wilson, author of "Tea with Jane Austen" and "In the Garden with Jane Austen". Only three more fortnight's to go! (See next blog story for more exciting details about this year's event in July).

Have a most enjoyable holiday weekend!

Yours in tea and friendship,


Saturday, May 8, 2010

Traveling Tea Cup: Goldfish Tea featured in Adagio Tea's May issue of Tea Muse

Hello TEA Friends,

Adagio Teas, home to teamap (the reference guide for tearooms nationwide), the indispensable IngenuiTEA teapot and, of course, many gourmet teas, featured Goldfish Tea Room in their May issue of Tea Muse, the on-line newsletter. Barb's TEA Shop had the pleasure of penning Tea Muse's first feature story on a Michigan tea room.

Goldfish Tea Room is located in Royal Oak and now features live music on weekends. For more details, click on the Tea Muse link above.

At BTS, Goldfish Tea Room seems to coincide with May. This is where my son, Matt, took me last Mother's Day weekend (see BTS blog story, May 18, 2009). A combination that is sure to become a tradition.

So, this weekend, consider treating your Mom to a relaxing tea time. Wishes of a Happy Mother's Day and a very special tea toast to all those special moms!

Yours in Tea and Friendship,


p.s. For a last minute Mother's Day Treat, see the latest from the Detroit Tea Examiner, for info on a fun tea, cake and pampering event at Lush Cosmetics. There's still time and no reservations required!