Sunday, November 09, 2008


How was your weekend? Quiet here and raining part of the time. Today was beautiful, though.

On Saturday I attended a tea given by a local women's club. It was called St. Nicholas' Tea. The club members wore aprons and served us three courses: scones with lemon curd, then tea sandwiches (my very favorite), followed by sweet little desserts. We had two pots of tea on our table and poured ourselves. Around the perimeter of the small room were things for sale, many with a Christmas theme for gifts. There were also two women playing harps. It was really quite lovely. I already plan to go next year.

I just remembered a memory that I will share with you: I was a little girl, eating lunch in John Wanamaker's Department Store's Crystal Tea Room in Philadelphia and eating, of course, tea sandwiches. I also remember in one of the large department stores there was a large ladies lounge. Times certainly have changed. Along with the regular bathroom facilities, there was a separate very large room containing lovely sofas and chairs and writing desks (complete with pens and writing paper). This was where the ladies could relax during a shopping break. I remember this in the 1950's and 60's.
John Wanamaker was a wonderful department store. They even had a ladies hatmaker back in the day. Wanamakers was well known for the Christmas Light Show which was accompanied by organ music from a large pipe organ that came from the St. Louis Exposition in 1904. People stopped in their shopping to watch the show, or people made a special visit to the store to see the show with their children. It is still a Philadelphia tradition. Today you can still go there to see it even though John Wanamakers Department Store is out of business and is now Macy's. Thank goodness Macy's has continued the tradition.



12 comments:

Lynne said...

I remember the Christmas music at Wanamaker's. Quite a show. I didn't know they were out of business. I've been away from Philly too long!

Linda said...

The tea sounds lovely. I enjoyed your sweet childhood memories of days gone by. One of our lovely old stores which is no longer had a lovely lounge too. Ladies would shop and them just rest and visit a bit befor more shopping. Those were the day when you wore a dress, heels, hat and gloves when you shopped. I loved theses good old days....hugs, Linda

Edie Marie's Attic said...

Hi Violet!

Oh what a lovely tea! I love to go to teas. It sounds like you had such a wonderful day.

Thank you for sharing your Christmas memories. What a warm sweet story about Christmas past. Things were alot different in the 50's & 60's. Christmas were simpler but so special in our memories!

Hugs, Sherry

Flower said...

Tea's are so much fun...the friendships shared and new sweet treat to experience!
My weekend was spent home alone with our dog. My husband went Elk hunting with our son. I had great plans to accomplish much. I didn't! :)

BClark said...

Ah yes, I also remember the ladies lounge and the tea rooms. Shopping was an event and you dressed for it and enjoyed it and planned your whole day around it. The sales ladies acted as if they really wanted to help you. Even the bags for your clothes was special for each shop.

Thank you for sharing

Diane@Diane's Place said...

Since it turned chilly here I've been drinking a lot of hot tea, especially Earl Gray, my favorite.

Your tea sounds very nice, and so do your childhood memories. I've always lived in a rural area so I don't have memories like that, but we did ride around and look at Christmas lights and decorations a lot, and we still try to go every year to do the same.

Hope you're having a great week!

Love and hugs,

Diane

Mary said...

I loved this post. It brought back many memories. I remember department stores that had a lady's lounge and the Sear's store here still has one. There are sofas where you can sit to relax, read a book or just people watch. It's the only one that I know of.

Thanks for sharing. If I'm ever in your area, I'll be sure to stop by Macy's.

Blessings,
Mary

Shellmo said...

That tea party sounds lovely - thank you for sharing!

Mountain Mama said...

What sweet memories.
Your recent tea with scones and lemon curd made me wonder exactly what lemon curd is. I'll have to do a google search and find out.
We are having sunshine today but it's cold out just the same. The sky is a deep blue, the kind we get when icy cold is coming. I'm glad I have all my bulbs planted and won't have to do it in the snow. LOL

Mountain Mama said...

What sweet memories.
Your recent tea with scones and lemon curd made me wonder exactly what lemon curd is. I'll have to do a google search and find out.
We are having sunshine today but it's cold out just the same. The sky is a deep blue, the kind we get when icy cold is coming. I'm glad I have all my bulbs planted and won't have to do it in the snow. LOL

Diane@Diane's Place said...

Back to answer your question about my dressing: I pick the chicken off the bones and add it to my dressing before I cook it most of the time. One of my sisters isn't fond of the chicken mixed in her dressing, so sometimes I leave the chicken on the bone and serve the stewed chicken pieces alongside the dressing.

xoxoxo

Diane

daffodilly said...

I can't say that I remember the Crystal Room at JW's. But I do remember the lounge at Snellenberger's for the wearied shoppers....but at that point it was a bit weary itself.