Friday, February 6, 2009

Valentine's Day Tea Party: Final Details

The tea party is set for the day after tomorrow. I'm excited to see that things are all coming together nicely. I've really done a good job of budgeting my time, which has not always been the case in the past. I still have two days packed full of things to do, but I'm not overly stressed or exhausted - yet. :)

I found a pretty swirly-like scroll frame, which will display the menu and double as a table decoration. I also have two small flower pots with pale pink silk roses and greens to dress up the table. My friend is working magic with fresh flowers and the tea cup and saucer I picked up recently. I don't make place cards, because everyone already has their usual seats that they migrate to upon arrival. If I can think of something fun next year, though, I might implement them just for the fun of it. So, those things, along with the burgundy table linens and my china pattern, should make for a pretty table setting. I realized that if I tried to do much more, there wouldn't be room for the food or table space for the games I have planned.

The prizes are all ready, as are the party favors. I used Valentine's decor take-out boxes to hold the trinkets I picked up. I ended up with six items in the boxes. They are: an empty treat bag (rolled up and tied with a twisty) which the guests will be invited to fill with the cookies/candy I will offer at the end of the party, a 'Cupid's Dart' flower seed packet, a few pieces of tea flavored candy, a small decorative hanging heart, a whimsical flower-themed magnet that I made, and a love-themed note pad. A CD will also be given to each guest that contains the love songs used during the Complete the Lyrics Game (see below).

I have my menu finalized and have already begun some of the prep work on a few of the items. Here is the menu:
First Course
Cherry & Almond Scones
Blueberry Scones

Second Course
Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Radish Poppy Seed Sandwiches
Strawberry & Cream Cheese Sandwiches
Salad with Edible Flowers
Deviled Eggs

Third Course
Rose Water Panna Cotta with Raspberries and Lychees
Vanilla Raspberry Layer Cake

Tea Selections
Lavender Herbal Tea
American Classic Black Tea 
I am going this afternoon to pick up the edible flowers. I am planning on crystallizing a few today in hopes that they'll turn out well enough to go on top of the cake. I am also using the flowers for the cold drinks. I am going to freeze them in ice cubes so they'll look pretty floating in the water glasses.

As far as games, I have the following three planned: Consequences of the Heart, Flower Meanings Match, and Love Songs Complete the Lyrics. Here is how we'll go about playing each one:

Consequences of the Heart - Give each person a sheet of paper numbered 1-10 (all have a small heart shaped hole punched in the bottom corner except for one) and a pen. Instruct everyone to write at the top (1) “one or more adjective”. Instruct everyone to fold the paper down over that word so that what has been written cannot be seen. Instruct everyone to pass their paper on to the right, but they cannot look at what was previously written. Instruct everyone to write at the ‘new’ top (2) “the name of a gentleman”. Fold and pass as before. Write (3) “one or more adjective”. Fold and pass as before. Write (4) “a lady’s name”. Fold and pass as before. Write (5) “a place to meet”. Fold and pass as before. Write (6) “something you could give”. Fold and pass as before. Write (7) “an expression”. Fold and pass as before. Write (8) “another expression”. Fold and pass as before. Write (9) “a consequence”. Fold and pass as before. Write (10) “an expression”. Read a sample Consequences of the Heart story that you prepare ahead of time (I played it myself just to see how it would work). Provide the “script” to the first volunteer reader who is to read the poem they were left holding. Everyone takes a turn. When all have been read, ask guests who has the paper without the special marking on it. That person wins the centerpiece.
Here is the "script": The [#1] [#2] met the [#3] [#4] at/in [#5] . He gave her [#6] and said to her, “ [#7] ”. She said to him, “ [#8] .” The consequence of the heart was [#9] . And the world said, “ [#10] .”

Flower Meaning Match - Provide guests with a list of flowers, set across from a list of meanings of flowers. Also rose color meanings. Guests must match the meaning to the appropriate flower/rose color. The person with the most correct wins. In order to make up this game, I researched online the meanings of flowers and picked the ones that I thought had some logic to them. Some of them will be tough, but is a game after all, and I don't want everyone to get them all right! I also have a couple of tie breaker trivia questions set aside just in case.

Love Songs Identification – Divide table into two teams. Each team is given a piece of paper and a pen. Snippets of 20 songs are played as cues. After each snippet is played, the team must decide what lyrics come next. The team with the most points at the end wins. The losing team gets to choose among the wrapped prizes and open them, but then the winners get to select from what has been opened, or they can open a new gift.

I have some more prep work to do in the kitchen today and tomorrow. That should leave me with only a few things to do on Sunday. The tea party is set for 1:30, so I shouldn't be too rushed.

If you're reading this and are planning your own Valentine's Day Tea Party, I encourage you to comment about the fun things you're doing. I truly love to hear the details!

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