As I browsed through the tea cups at a second hand store recently, I realized my family would exclaim, “Not another tea cup!” if I brought any more home. However, this didn’t deter me.
There I’ll find odds and ends and don’t feel I need to buy a matched set of specific number. Dainty tea cups, cups with saucers, and mugs all catch my attention. Some remind me of tea time at my grandmother’s with dainty cups or gazing at my aunt’s collection of souvenir cups and saucers she displayed, but didn’t use.
My mom began to gather tea cups and coffee mugs in her later years. When I packed to move her from her home to mine, as her Alzheimer’s progressed, I came across numerous tea cups…some she’d purchased and more given her by friends and family.
Sharing a cup of tea with family and visitors had been a sign of hospitality for her mother and later for my mom. So the tea cups accumulated.
Sharing Tea Party Ideas
Since I often write about tea, tea parties, and tea memorabilia, readers frequently e-mail me, to share their experiences or ask questions.
One reader told how her club decided to have a tea party with each person bringing a tea cup and sharing information about it. It could be a cup handed down in their family, one given by a special friend, or one they purchased simply because they liked it.
When a lady in a distant state asked me about tea party ideas for an organization whose activities she planned, I suggested that each person bring a tea cup or mug and share the story. It also might be a good idea to have some extra cups on hand in case someone didn’t have one to bring. She thought this an excellent idea; I’m waiting to hear how it turned out.
Seasonal Tea Cups
Now that spring is here, it’s time to pack away the mugs with snowmen on them and other winter scenes. We’ll bring out those with flowers, birds, and other warm weather decorations.
Since, in our multi-generational household, it difficult to find space for saucers in our kitchen closets, we usually don’t use these items. However, I do like to have them on hand occasionally so the grandchildren know this is part of the ritual of serving tea.
(c)2006 Mary Emma Allen
(I'd enjoy having you share your tea time traditions with me. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org )