Tea with Jam and Bread

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My eldest gal turned nine this weekend.  How is it possible that my precious girl is so near double digits?  Needless to say, this weekend was filled with all kinds of party action.  And true to form, each party was historically-based, for my daughter who loves history more than any third grader I have come across.

On Saturday, she hosted her girlfriends for a Victorian tea party for her girlfriends and their dolls.  They sipped on her favorite raspberry peach tea, and snacked on our favorite cupcake recipe from this cook book.  (We used this natural food coloring this time, and I must say, I loved it!  We have run into trouble in the past with natural food coloring in that it did not hold the color very well, but this one worked like a charm.)

This tea party was especially close to my heart because when I was nine, my mom held a tea party for my sister and me.  It is one of my fondest memories I have as a child, and I was just thrilled when Gianna suggested a similar tea party for her birthday on this particular year.  We could just feel Mana’s presence with us all day long.

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Then on Sunday, we ventured back to the time of the pioneers for her Little House on the Prairie-inspired party, celebrated with our family.  My daughter is quite the organizer, and planned the entire menu, decorations, and kids’ activities, all on her own.  The afternoon featured center pieces and a fun pomander activity (and mulled wine…my contribution to the day) from Ashley English’s Handmade Gatherings.  She also found tons of fun pioneer crafts for the kids in Pioneer Projects by Bobbie Kalman.  She then made her own corn chowder with a recipe from her newly acquired Lincoln Heritage Trail Cook Book.  And of course, a pioneer party is not complete without homemade butter and bread, so we baked her favorite honey oat bread from The Rhythm of Family by Amanda and Steve Soule.  And for those who may be wondering, I made the girls’ skirts from a vintage coverlet I found at a thrift store, and I purchased these bonnets to complete the pioneer ensemble.

The shining sun, crisp autumn air, and scent of campfire and cloves mingling in the air left us all feeling that this was truly a wonderful way to close our weekend.