I spent Sunday afternoon at a bridal shower for my beautiful cousin. She’s marrying my kind of man. Big burly guy with a full beard who cooks and brews his own beer and has a gentle spirit. Good choice. The bridal shower was a full formal English tea. My lovely aunt pulled out all her fancy dishes and her even fancier recipes. We were surrounded by Devonshire cream, peanut butter truffles, chicken salad tarts, cucumber sandwiches and strawberry soup. Earl Grey and Mango Passion and Peppermint Teas. Rolled butter and jam and heart-shaped scones. It was all beautiful.
I brought my daughters along even though I think technically they weren’t invited. My aunt is the kind
where people who show up uninvited get a warm welcome. She hauled a familiar child’s table and chairs downstairs and unpacked a beautiful tiny tea set. I gulped a little. The table, chairs and tea set all belonged to my cousin, Annie. She currently has her tea parties in heaven. Treasures from ones we’ve lost should be treated with care.
And my two-year old is….well….she’s two.
My aunt looked directly at the little miss and said “I know you’ll be fine, you know how to be gentle”. She looked at me and said “I won’t take it with me”.
Ah yes. That lesson again. People matter more than things. Our treasures are in heaven.
I love that my aunt holds things loosely and people tightly. It’s the right priority.
The little girls were, in fact, gentle. I’m sure the vote of confidence from my aunt went a long way. I should remember this. I tend to rise to the standard that I’m treated. If I assume they’ll be gentle than it’s significantly more likely they’ll be gentle. The girls toasted each other. They toasted the bride. They ate all the sugar cubes.
After the tea, the youngest daughter hauled presents up to the bride. My eldest daughter learned how to make a rehearsal practice bridal bouquet. We told her this was an important life skill. Used significantly more often than algebra. Don’t tell her I said that. Don’t tell my math teacher friends that either. Algebra is important.
After everyone went home my sister and I stayed to help with the dishes. My aunt sent me a text today expressing great thanks for the help serving the tea and doing the dishes. It was seriously my pleasure. Standing in the kitchen yesterday with my sister and my aunt I thought about our weddings and bridal showers and graduation parties. My aunt helped at them all. It frequently required planet tickets to do so. This post is officially my return thank you. Thank you for the many parties and recipes and dishes. Thank you for the life lessons and the love. Thank you for sharing your daughter’s tea set with my daughters. Thank you for letting us love on your daughter.
Moms and daughters. Aunts and nieces.
It was priceless.