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Spring tea with style, good manners and a little PB and J

Posted: Wednesday, March 19, 2008

 

  Bluffton kids Kate Holland, 5, and her sister, Brynn, 2, (center row, left and right) hosted a springtime tea party for their friends with cupcakes, ham and cheese biscuits, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and fresh fruit with dip. Picturead in the upper row are Caitlyn Owen, 6, Brilyn Davis, 6, and Kaityln Dean, 5; on the bottom row are the Woods siblings Logan, 2, Rachael, 6, and Allison, 3. Photos by Sue Ade/Morris News Se

Bluffton kids Kate Holland, 5, and her sister, Brynn, 2, (center row, left and right) hosted a springtime tea party for their friends with cupcakes, ham and cheese biscuits, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and fresh fruit with dip. Picturead in the upper row are Caitlyn Owen, 6, Brilyn Davis, 6, and Kaityln Dean, 5; on the bottom row are the Woods siblings Logan, 2, Rachael, 6, and Allison, 3.

Photos by Sue Ade/Morris News Se

Some girls really know how to spring a party for their friends. When 5-year-old Kate Holland told her mother that she'd like to have a party, the timing couldn't have been better. With Easter just days away, Kate thought a spring tea party, culminating with an outdoor Easter egg hunt, would be just the thing, and her mother agreed.

So guests were invited to dress up, enjoy decaffeinated tea with milk and sugar, cupcakes, ham and cheese biscuits, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and fresh fruit with dip.

What struck me most about these young partygoers, seven girls and one charming little boy, all ages 2 to 6, was their perfect manners and appreciation of a well-appointed table.

The children utterly (and carefully) enjoyed fine china cups, creamers and sugar bowls, tiered cake plates and fresh flowers. They sat politely at their tables, never failed to say "more, please," and "thank you," and knew how to engage in polite conversation mostly detailing the finer points of just how milk and sugar should be stirred into tea.

After tea, it was time to be excused from the table, gather one's own egg basket and head for the yard. As gloved hands reached into azalea bushes looking for Easter eggs, I couldn't help but think I didn't know when I last saw an Easter egg hunt as genteel as this.

The hunt itself appeared but an extension of the tea and somehow the kids were getting it, even the very little ones. The children seemed to grasp that it is good to share a meal with others, to be kind to one another and to have special friends, especially in the spring.

Sue Ade is a gourmet baker and collector of vintage cooking utensils and cookbooks. She can be reached at sueade@aol.com or 683-0375.

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