We have the great fortune of living in the same apartment building as Mr. Popcorn’s brother and his family. As transplants to this city, being able to live in the same building as your extended family is kind of rare. Since we moved here, we’ve been able to spend even more time with our niece and nephew.
While we were visiting a few weeks ago, I suggested to our niece that we have a tea party. A couple of weeks later my mother-in-law flew in to help me with my transition back to work and we decided to have the tea party while she was here. Now, it’s been some time since I sat at a small kid’s table for lukewarm tea and crumpets, so you can imagine my panic when I realized that I didn’t know how to throw a tea party. What tea set should we use? Where could we quickly get an affordable one? What would they eat? I just returned to work the week before so these questions felt very big and unanswerable.
One morning on my way to work, I found a porcelain tea set at a discount children’s store. It cost $4, which was perfectly in my price range. My mother-in-law bought little cocktail Valentine’s Day napkins and miniature cupcakes from a local bakery. I made peanut butter banana crustless sandwiches and we both made tea party hats with paper plates and crepe paper. It wasn’t until about 15 minutes before the tea party started that we realized that we didn’t have any tea! Seriously?! How did I forget the tea? We went through the cabinets but all we could come up with was mother’s milk tea and very caffeinated black tea. Yikes!
We headed upstairs where my niece and our one-year old neighbor waited. My sister-in-law saved the day by brewing some sleepy time herbal tea. My mother-in-law and I prepared the snacks, set the table with the miniature tea set and out came the tea.
We thought the girls would only be interested in the tea party for 15 minutes, but to our surprise we drank tea from our miniature cups for an hour! Nothing got broken. No one cried. And, a fun time was had by all.
When I throw another tea party either for Baby Popcorn or my niece, here’s what I’ll keep in mind:
- Once you get the tea set and some lukewarm mild tasting tea, you really don’t have to do much else.
- Brew the tea, but make sure to put it on ice to cool it down.
- If you are going to use a porcelain tea set, sit at the tea table to make sure nothing breaks.
- If you serve your kids sugar, moderate it or else you may be picking up the pieces to that porcelain tea set off the floor.
- Make party hats or have your kids make the party hats the day before to build momentum for the party.
- Have lots of paper towel on hand. Little people don’t have the motor skills to pour themselves tea without spilling it everywhere.
- Take pictures! There will definitely be some great moments that you’ll want to capture.