Monday, March 29, 2010

Alice in Wonderland...

ain't got nuthin' on my sister when it comes to throwing a tea party! :)

As I mentioned yesterday, my big sis, Liz (you may remember my post here about her...) planned a fundraiser tea that was held last Sunday.  I went over Saturday afternoon and spent the night, helping her get ready, but for the most part, much of the planning and baking was done by her!

I still had the Nikon D90 (she was heading back to Nikon on Monday!) so I popped my 50mm f/1.8 lens on it and started snapping, as I was sure that my sister would want to scrapbook the little details of her successful tea party.

Liz had some of these cups from last year's tea party, that she had picked up through yard sales and auctions.  But many of them were donated by loving family and friends... and even strangers!  While having chemo one week, Liz mentioned to one of the caregivers that she was having a tea party.  This woman offered to send out an email request and lo and behold!  Almost 40 cups were donated!

Oddly enough, there were no two of the same design!!  By the time I put down my camera to grab a tea, my favourite cup was already chosen (second row, third cup from the right end), but I did end up with a lovely one - the one to the left of it!

Notice the great short depth of field in this photo?  I absolutely LOVE my 50mm lens!

We decorated all of the tables and chairs on Saturday.  During another chemo session, my sister was discussing the tea party with our other sister, and a woman who was accompanying another patient nearby overheard.  She came over and said, "Pardon my eavesdropping, but I heard you talking about your tea party.  I own a business and I'd love to donate chair covers".  It turns out that this woman lives in the same small town that I do!  I wish I could remember her business name as I would give her a shout out... I will check with my sister and let you all know!  I am constantly amazed every day at the goodness of people.

Continuing on with our photo story, here's a view of Liz's gorgeous living room, through the French doors:

Just inside these doors, on the right side, is a new wall decor item that my sister found a few weeks ago:

The colouring was perfect for her decor, and the message was poignant.  It was almost as if it was just waiting for her to come along and buy it.

Further into the living room, we set up small tables of four, as well as the large dining table, to accomodate everyone.
Isn't that floral arrangement gorgeous??  My cousins, Connie & Gabe, upon finding out about Liz's diagnosis, promptly arranged for Newland's Flowers to deliver an arrangement every Wednesday for 10 weeks to "banish the winter blues and cheer her up".  Isn't that the sweetest thing you've every heard?  And they are BEAUTIFUL, each and every week - and always unique!

In the family room, off the kitchen, we set up bistro tables with cloths and simple floral arrangements.

To the left of the room, in the family room area, we moved (or rather, had Liz's hubby and son move) their pub dining table to provide more seating.

I sat here with this group of fabulous ladies.
The tea set on the table was my mother's and as such, was given a place of honour.

If you look closely, you can see me in the reflection! :)

In between the kitchen and family areas, we set up the food.  There were tea sandwiches:  smoked salmon, goat cheese and watercress, egg salad, cucumber mint and of course, whipped butter and jam.  A friend also made cherry cream cheese pinwheels and carrot cake tea sandwiches.

And the desserts!  Oh, they were heavenly - butter tarts, profiteroles and mexican wedding cookies. 

And of course, scones...

with an array of toppings like Devon cream, whipped butter, homemade strawberry, raspberry and cherry jams, fig preserves and apple butter, along with a raspberry sauce.  Mmmm...
Here's my contribution to the party...

Uh, that would be the menu and name cards... not the jams or preserves... :)

Althought I did roll up my sleeves on Sunday morning and help make most of the sandwiches while Liz ran around and finished up last minute touches...

Have I mentioned how much I LOVE this lens??

Before we got too busy with the party, I made sure that my sisters and I sat down for a family portrait:
I think that you can tell in this photo that I was up until after 3am, but I'm happy to have a photo of the three of us!  Don't you love Liz's hat?  Her friend, Mary, brought it for her to wear!  So elegant!

It was only two hours, but what a memorable and fun way to raise money for a good cause!
I don't have the final tally from Liz as to the funds raised, but I know that there were some very generous donations.  Thanks to everyone who attended and to those who donated, as well!

So how about you?  Have you ever organized a charity fundraiser?  I can soooo get how these rich wives can spend all day working with charities - it was so fulfilling knowing that our hard work was not only going to help people in our community, but that it raised awareness for the goodness that the Windsor Cancer Centre Foundation provides.

Thanks for reading!


  1. wow looks like you girls did a lot of work.. ad it all paid off.. thanks for sharing your photos... I work for the Salvation Army...and to me that is soo fulfilling to me know I am helping someone everyday...

  2. pictures are wonderful! thanks for helping out while i am overseas but i will take my job back next year as assistant events planner ;)

  3. Incredible Sue! And so beautifully put together!


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