Monday, May 25, 2009

How to host an awesome tea party

If you want to host a tea party, there are a few things you will need. First off, you will need some excellent recipes, like this one, or this one, or this one. Next, you will need to set the scene, or rather, the table.

If you have some old china, you can set a very pretty table. I found some pretty and inexpensive sets from Ebay and Home Goods. You can mix and match your place settings to make a shabby chic style table. It makes the table a little less formal, but just as pretty.

Next, get your mom involved. She can magically find some of her grandmother's old linens that will work as a lovely table cloth and pretty cloth napkins. She may even be able to find a stack of aprons, too. (I got mine from Target before I found out about our secret stash.)
Our menu included three types of tea sandwiches: cucumber mint, strawberry, and nut; cream scones with Devonshire clotted cream, strawberry jam, and lemon curd; and two desserts: lemon curd tarts and white chocolate and chai tea mousse. These need to be timed right for everything to be served at the same time. The mousse has to be started the night before, and the lemon curd is best prepared in advance since it will need time to set (we learned this the hard way). To help get everything done at the right time, it's best to recruit your guests to join in the work.

Finally, once everything is prepared, add the food to the table and settle in for a delicious meal!

Friday, May 22, 2009


Last weekend I finally finished my application to grad school. I painfully wrote my personal goals essay (I loathe writing about myself for these types of things), sent in for my transcripts, and begged for recommendations. Within 48 hours of sending out the official recommendation requests, two of my three people had completed my recommendations and let me know that they were done. A few days later, I got a notice that my transcripts had arrived. So now I'm waiting on one person to complete the final piece of my application puzzle. Remember, this was all just one short week ago. There is absolutely no reason for me to be anxious or impatient yet - one, they may have been busy last weekend. Makes sense - their lives don't exactly revolve around me. Two, I told them that I had two months before it had to be in. Three, this was ONLY A WEEK AGO!

And yet I find myself thinking about asking another college professor if he'd be willing to do a recommendation for me, in the hopes that he would say yes and my app would be done, officially done, and I'd be that much closer to finding out if I was accepted and the next step in my life would officially begin. Aye, there's the rub. My life, in a way, hinges on one person now (yes, I know, not really - my life is in God's hands, not people's). If this person doesn't complete the recommendation, my application isn't complete, and I don't get in.

But I have two months before this has to get done; it's been one week since I made the request. So my issue here is not one person and their calendar - it's my own need to control my surroundings and my inability to deal with uncertainty with my present and immediate future. And since there has been an abundance of uncertainty and upheaval lately, I'm not dealing well with things like this.

So again I pray for patience (always a risky move, cuz God may grant it) and to just take this long weekend and relax. I discovered tonight, as tears streamed down my face as I watched the heart wrenching Hotel for Dogs, that I'm a little stressed right now. And maybe a little time to rejuvenate myself might help me get things back into perspective. That being said, I wish you all a fun (and refreshing) Memorial Day weekend.

And now I'm going to bed. G'nite.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


I had my wisdom teeth removed about two weeks ago and I've had limited solid foods since then. I think the lack of food has made me slightly obsessed with it. Every now and then I get urgings to bake, and this is one of those times. But why bake when you can't enjoy the fruits of your labors? So I torture myself by watching the Saturday PBS cooking shows and yearn.

Ahh, but when I can eat again, truly eat, I would like to make the following:

Buttermilk biscuits from Everyday Baking

Anything from (best baking site I've ever found) such as:
S'Mores bars
Brutti ma Buoni
Almond Shortbread Cookies

Asian Slaw from

And so much more. Everything sounds good. Even the doggie biscotti that my mom just made smells delicious, and the smell usually nauseates me while they're baking. That's how hungry I am.

New Beginnings

My life's been changing a lot in the last few weeks - my job of 4 1/2 years was eliminated, I'm starting a new one, and as of last night, I have officially applied to grad school. In honor of these changes, and with the encouragement of my friends, I thought this would be a great time to start a new blog and write about the new direction my life is taking.

So here's to new beginnings - may they be full of promise and new life!