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My Tea Party
Jessica Ann Smith
at the age of 5
With love from,
Mommy and Daddy
December 25, 2003
It was a nice, sunny afternoon. Jessica Smith of Plymouth, Michigan sat on the porch swing listening to Mommy tell the story of Queen Victoria's first tea party.
"It was a beautiful afternoon just like today," Mommy said. "Anna, one of the Queen's ladies-in-waiting was instructed to serve tea and a little cake in her room."
"The Queen enjoyed the delightful experience and instructed Anna to continue to bring tea and cake every afternoon."
As Jessica listened to Mommy tell the story, she began to think she would like to have a tea party and invite Amy, Kelly, and Angie.
"Mommy, do you think that I could have a tea party just like Queen Victoria?"
"I think a tea party is a wonderful idea, Jessica," Mommy said. "I will help you plan your special tea party."
"Before you send out your invitations Jessica, we need to decide on when to have a tea party, and what you want to serve your guests," Mommy said. Jessica sat down at her table and began to think and write down what she could serve.
"I will have an Afternoon Tea at two o'clock. Should I serve tender biscuits hot from the oven with jam and butter, or English Muffins?" Jessica asked.
"You mean scones and crumpets."
"Mommy, I am sure that we can serve both. What would you like to drink? There are many varieties of tea. I would like Raspberry tea, Cherry and Grape Ginger Ale and chocolate milk," replied Jessica.
Finally, the big day arrived. Amy, Kelly, and Angie helped Jessica decorate the room with ribbon garlands and bows.
Amy helped set the table with china, glasses, and silverware. The finishing touch was a beautiful spray of roses on the center of the table.
Mommy entered the room with a very large box. As she lifted the cover of the box, she said, "Before you can attend a tea party, you must be properly dressed." A dress, boas, tiaras, jewelry, shoes, gloves, and purses of all colors and styles filled the box.
"Oh, Jessica. Look, you can be the princess," said Kelly. Kelly placed the tiara on her head. The girls began to dress up in their special clothes.
"Mommy is going to show us how to make tea" said Jessica.
"First, you will need to boil the water in a kettle. Be sure to use cold tap water, as it is fresher, and let it run for a minute. One secret for a good tea is not to use warm water," Mommy said.
"Next, add hot water to the teapot until you are ready to pour in the boiling water. This will keep the teapot warm and it will already be warm when you add the tealeaves. Add 1 tablespoon of tealeaves in teapot. Pour boiling water over tealeaves. Allow brewing for 3 minutes. This will allow the tealeaves to reach their optimum 2 6-ounce servings, and flavor. This is considered the perfect brewing time."
Jessica, would you, Amy, Kelly, and Angie like to help me make the Watercress sandwiches?" asked Mommy.
Mommy gave them the recipe and all of the ingredients to make the sandwiches: Use 1 small bunch of watercress, 6 slices white bread with crust removed. Butter the insides of both slices of bread for each sandwich.
When all of the preparations for the afternoon tea were finished, Mommy announced, "Tea is served. But before you eat, be sure you know your manners."
Table manners for Children
Wash your hands before sitting down.
Leave toys, books, and pets behind.
When you sit down, place the napkin in your lap.
Sit up straight and don't slouch.
Ask politely for dishes to be passed.
Never reach across the table.
Wait until everyone is seated and served before starting to eat.
If grace is said, wait to eat until it is completed.
Don't giggle during grace.
Keep your elbows off the table.
Never chew with your mouth open.
Never talk with food in your mouth.
Use utensils quietly without banging them on the table or plate.
You should place your knife on the edge of the plate when not in use.
Slice butter from the butter dish and place it on your butter plate or other plate.
The butter knife should stay with the butter dish.
Never wave or throw utensils.
Keep your knife out of your mouth.
Never play with your food.
Never grab food from other's plates.
Ask politely for seconds if you want them.
Asked to be excused from the table.
Remember, good manners are important and make meals more enjoyable.
You will be proud if you practice these rules at home.