Thursday, March 3, 2011

Tea Time

I had so much fun hosting last year's Bible Bowl Senior Tea that I signed up to do it again this year. The tea was a success, and now that it is Thursday already, it feels like it all happened long ago. For starters, the "tea" had a different vibe this year. The girls requested a vintage Dr. Pepper theme! They threw me a decorating curve ball. :-)

We honored these three darlings, who are the three seniors in this year's Bible Bowl class. Friendships continue to grow and strengthen for this group, and now, as we near the end of this journey with my own senior, I stand in awe of the precious bonds that will sustain these young women as they enter the next season of life. These kids have traveled together, competed together, and challenged one another to press forward in every discipline of life. They will forever cherish the years they spent together working AND playing hard!

One of the Moms collects tea cups throughout the year to be used at the year end tea. It is a fun take-home memento, and now each girl has her own collection of cups from all the teas she has attended. This year I filled the cups with a glass bottle of Dr. Pepper. We found some rather old-timey looking bottles that worked perfectly! The theme was much more casual, and although it was puzzling to think about how it would all work, I think it turned out super cute!

The colors were red, white, and yellow. I finally had an excuse to go buy a huge Ball canning jar to use for a vintage vase. I've always wanted one! I found it at Hobby Lobby, and after my coupon it was a whopping $2. If I'd have known that, I don't think I would have waited so long to get one! We decorated with daisies, Dr. Pepper, and some vintage frames that I filled with the names of the honorees.

Hannah stayed up late with me to help decorate, and I joked with her that after my last craft, people are going to start wondering about my odd affection for dressing soda bottles!

The menu included sausage twirls, baby quiche, mini franks in puff pastry, cream puffs, assorted sweet breads, fruit salad, apple cinnamon cake, and strawberry lemonade.

My friend Beverly did an unbelievable job of co-hosting the tea with me. Beverly had two sons who graduated from Bible Bowl years ago, but she loves the program so much, she has stayed involved for many years to coach the junior high kids. She has a significant impact on every member of the team, and her loyalty and dedication mean the world to the kids. She set up a memory table for the girls, and put her mad photography skills to work in a spectacular way. She took the girls out on a photo shoot a few weeks ago, and framed a portrait for each of them. Everyone involved in Bible Bowl signed the photo mats. She also framed pictures of the three girls together, and made collages for each of them commemorating their years in the program. It was an overwhelming display of generosity and love, and the girls were delighted. I wish this photo showed more detail, but it got very dark because of the window behind the table.

Beverly also came up with a very touching idea for party favors. She went to practice one night and took a picture of every single girl posing with the three seniors. She matted those photos and used them as cupcake toppers, so each guest got to take home a cupcake with a special photo. Beverly has boundless creativity, and what she doesn't know is that she unknowingly volunteered herself to co-host all future Bible Bowl events that I do. I now know who to go to for entertaining ingenuity!

I can't believe the clock is ticking toward kissing these girls good-bye for real. As exciting as it will be to see each of them move on to the calling God has on their lives, I can hardly imagine a weekend without some of them plopped on my couch. It's too much for me to comprehend, so I'm just enjoying what time we have left in high school, and looking forward to reunions when they're college girls!

Next year all the Bible Bowl seniors will be boys, so I'll have to trade my tea cups for.....sports bottles? Soda cans? A chili cook out?? I'm always up for planning a celebration with some of my very favorite people.

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