L to R: Sandra Johnston, Betty Anne Cloninger, Cathy Moose

Betty Ann Cloninger

"My sisters and me, together for tea" - And so began my special invitation to my Three Sisters tea party. My tea was held on Saturday, January 26th, and my special guests were of course my wonderful sisters, Sandra Johnston and Cathy Moose.

My invitations were handwritten on white paper doilies with a thin red ribbon glued on the top. The envelopes were hand-stamped with tiny red hearts.

Our menu consisted of: tiny chicken salad sandwiches, cucumber sandwiches (using Sandy's Tea Society recipe), mini blueberry muffins (purchased from the grocery store), heart-shaped sugar cookies (also from the grocery store), fresh strawberries with whipped cream, coconut bonbons and pink chocolate candies made in molds of tea pots and teacups and saucers, valentine hearts and cherubs. My "tea" was hot spiced apple cider simmered with brown sugar and cinnamon.

My table was set using a cream colored lace edged tablecloth, my grandmother's cream colored plates, white milk glass bowls and antique pressed glass plates. My teacups and saucers were all floral with a pink theme unifying them.

I placed clear heart-shaped vases at each place setting and filled the base with cobalt blue marbles and added beautiful fresh pink carnations as a lovely contrast. Also, at each place, I had favors for each of my sisters consisting of: a silver stuffed beaded heart to hang from a dresser or a doorknob, two floral embroidered handkerchiefs (no lady should be without one) and, as a parting gift, I gave them each the heart-shaped vase of pink flowers that was at their place setting.

After our tea, we went to a local antique mall for treasure hunting and, after several hours, we came back to my home for more tea and refreshments. It was a wonderful day.

Our Three Sisters Tea parties were created as a way of spending quality time with each other during these hectic times in our lives. Every 3 to 4 months we each take turns hosting a tea. We have worn long dresses and fancy hats, feather boas, t-shirts, jeans and sweatshirts and the memories that we are making are priceless.

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