justphyllisopyBy Phyllis Galowitz

The “Hat and Glove Tea,” given by Debbie Abbate as a fundraiser to benefit the Andes Public Library, was such a delight! The ladies of Andes don’t often get an opportunity to play “dress-up” in the middle of the afternoon, but the dozen or so of us who attended this event went all out! We made the effort to find fancy gloves, some not worn for forty years, and hats pulled off back shelves. (I wore my wide-brimmed gardening hat and Peruvian knit gloves, worn on cold, winter days.)

One could tell by just looking at the beautifully designed and printed formal invitations made by Mary Davis that this would be no ordinary tea party! From the moment we turned onto the road to Debbie’s house and saw the hand-made teacup signs leading to her beautiful home, where Bob, Debbie’s husband, stood waiting to offer valet parking, we fell into our elegant queen’s table-manners mode.Tea

The three color coordinated tables, set formally with their collections of Depression Glass and china in the most discriminating way, welcomed us. We sat up straighter at our places marked with hand-made name cards. At each table there were tea fact cards printed on paper-lace doilies, decorated by hand with Victorian flowers and, of course, tea cups. While Debbie, in her white embroidered apron, served the assorted tea sandwiches on tiered platters, we exchanged the cards and learned all about teas of every kind. Peach tea went with the tiny, delicate but numerous sandwiches. Scones came next, served with clotted cream and jam. Earl Grey Tea went well with those. For dessert there were assorted miniature pastries, all made by Debbie and as pretty as they were delicious.

After the last cup of tea we all went into the den where a boutique was set up of creatively wrapped gift items, donated in advance. These items were offered for sale at very low prices all to benefit the library. But wait, we’re not finished! As we prepared to leave, there was a tiny shopping bag for each of us with—yes, you guessed it—handmade candies in the shape of cups and saucers AND a REAL miniature white pumpkin, tied with a bow and holding a tiny, handmade Fall leaf pin, to wear in this season and to forever remember this amazing fairytale event!~