Sunday, November 14, 2010

Tea Party


Welcome to Tea Party and dress up week. We will be exploring the age old tradition of little girls acting like big girls by dressing up and talking a lot. The picture above was taken in 1909. It does not look that different than some of the tea parties my daughter threw when she was a little girl. I was always amazed at how complicated they were, and how many details were included in the set up. If I remember right, tea parties were just about the favorite thing to do for her and her friends. She is twenty now, so that was some time ago. So, I wonder, do little girls still throw elaborate tea parties.

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14 comments:

  1. I'm really looking forward to Tea Party Week, but I must say that I'm a bit surprised (delightfully so).

    Yes, little girls (and big ones) still have tea parties, but they seem to have gone the way of the birthday party - catered by businesses who specialize in them, or Tea Rooms who provide the hats and dress-up clothes.

    I would love to think that there are lots of little girls out there having tea parties in their front (or back) yards with their friends, dolls and teddy bears.

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  2. My tea parties were always an elaborate affair. It seemed like hours to set everything up suitable enough so that only the A list teddy bears could attend. We would wear only our "best", to sit out in a shady spot in the back yard, having the most engaging conversations.

    The only drawback to it was, every week, without fail, the same uninvited guest would show up, take a teddy bear for a hostage Freedom would only be granted if I gave up the cookies. I would spend the next hour or so crying about how big brothers do not belong at tea parties.

    Twenty years later, the same thing would happen at my daughters Tea Parties. The very same uninvited guest makes the occasional appearance at my house. He's older now, and demands more cookies, but his technique hasn't changed. She was wiser than I was as a child though, she would make him hold the bear all day long and ate the cookies herself.

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  3. Blog reader don't have to sign in as anonymous.
    They can either join PJM follower list or they can co the following.

    Where it say "Choose an Identity".
    If they click on the third button where it says "NAME/URL", a new area will open up and they can put their name in the top box where it says "Name".

    Now down to real business.
    Where are the Domestic Updates????

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  4. I would hate to have to boycott OPOD. But we need our Domestic Updates.
    We never did get a photo of Handsome Jack in his full tail feathers. How about the younger boys, have they got their full tail feathers yet?
    Have they ever tried to roost on top of the BEAN BARN?
    How is your garden growing?
    Did you ever teach Mrs. PJM to drive the tractor.
    I know some things are a MAN'S job, but it would be nice if she could carry on if you aren't there.
    Do you favor high fence hunting, that are so popular in Texas
    We need answers to these questions and more.

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  5. To modernize just add glitter makeup, $200 jeans, and the insipid tones of Justin Bieber. (insert despondent sigh here)

    John

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  6. Our youngest grandchild seems to have been the model for the "Fancy Nancy" stories. We gave her a child-sized silver tea service and some flavored de-caf teas, her mom gave her some espresso cups, and the child is in seventh heaven. Hats, Mom's shoes, more jangly necklaces than Marley's ghost... the whole nine yards! Oh, we DO have tea parties.

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  7. WOW!!! What a switch from last week's topic!!

    This is a beautiful photo. From the setting, the clothes, and the hair, these two young girls must have been the daughters of very rich "Gilded Age" industrialists. Notice the purse and elaborate hat on the girl on the right.

    Of course, it's also possible that the photo was staged.

    In any event, it is a wonderful testamennt to the elaborate lifestyle of the upper class during the Gilded Age (in the days before income tax).

    At the famous Vanderbilt mansion (The Breakers) in Newport RI, there is an elaborate "playhouse" that was constructed for the children to have tea parties in. It actually has a working kitchen and is the size of a small house, sort of like a Goldilocks type of thing.

    Just imagine the lucky kids who has tea parties there!

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  8. My sister and I always loved tea parties when we were growing up - we would always line up our dolls and stuffed animals.

    But my daughter, who is now 20, was defintely NOT the tea party type. Actually, she never played with dolls (or toys) at all, not even as a toddler. Her passions were always athletics and art - very, very unlike me.

    One of her uncles used to be an exective with Mattel; and on Christmas and her birthdays, the toys and dolls would arrive by the bushel. Within months, we would ship them out (untouched) to charities or to the Salvation Army.

    We finally had to ask my brother-in-law and his wife to stop sending her toys and dolls, because she never played with them.

    The only activities she was ever interested in were drawing and painting, or hanging upside down on the swing set (for hours).

    For one of her birthdays, my sister gave her a little china tea set in a beautiful wicker basket. My daughter thanked her politely, but she never touched it - I have it put away in a safe place.

    Once, when she was about 7 years old, she was invited to a tea party birthday for a classmate - she hated it and said it was "boring."

    But . . . although my daughter never liked tea parties, I really can't complain.

    From elementary school on, she became an advanced competitive gymnast and dancer. Today she's a phys ed major in college with a 4.0 GPA.

    To each his own!! But I still like tea parties!

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  9. The "Dollhouse" was a kid's playhouse built ~ 1930 on the former estate of Charles Post (now C.W. Post campus of LIU). It was built for the little girl who would later be known as Dina Merrill. Here's a couple of links w/pictures and a blurb from Long Island University.

    http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/NGGDWG1cqf281NAvf52mTg

    http://www2.liu.edu/cwis/cwp/location/buildings/13.html

    John

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  10. "I can tell you this, as a result of our massive victories in the Senate and the House, that Pres. Clinton is irrelevant now and will not be re-elected."
    Newt Gingrich, 1994

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  11. It worked! Thanks Roger.

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  12. She's pointing her finger at the other little girl.

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