Thursday, December 30, 2010

Happy 2011!

Dearest Friends of The Tearoom,

(Fauchon offers you its most precious smile for 2011.)

This came in my e-mail a few days ago from the lovely people at Fauchon. I love this image and although you may have already seen it, I am happy to share it with you...

And don't we all wish we were in Paris this New Year's Eve so we could all go have one of these objects of swooning? This is their "Eclair Paris", filled with dark chocolate cream, covered in dark chocolate icing and then topped with a gold-leaf decoration reminding us that it comes from the one city in the world that could elevate pastry to this highest level of art!
(image from Papilles & Pupilles)

And here is the catering menu, complete with luscious photos, if you would like to see what else can be found at Fauchon for A Beautiful Parisian New Year's Soirée!

My final treat of the night, and of the year, is a fun video I found showing New Year's Eve in Paris!

Bonne Année to all the Dear Friends of The Tearoom!
May we all have beautiful, productive, creative New Years full of love, health and happiness.

Hugs to you all,


Friday, December 24, 2010

Welcome to Christmas Eve 2010...

My Dearest Friends,
Thank you so much for joining me! And if you are joining me later, of course you are still very most welcome, as you will then get to celebrate two Christmas Eves!

Our celebration of Christmas Eve is a simple one this year.

Won't you please come warm yourself by the fire and help yourself to something delcious from the samovars on the mantlepiece? The one on the left is hot chocolate, steeped with vanilla beans and the one on the left is the hot water, should you prefer tea. I have made tonight's tea selection based on an act of kindness.

My dear friend Anya of Couture Millinery Atelier sent me a very sweet package today. Sweet because it was so nice of her to do it, but also for what it contained!

Mr. V and I love these mints, which have been made at the Abbey in Flavigny, France since 1591! Anya was so nice as to send a package containing these violet candies, but also a tin of rose and a tin of anise. Each candy is deliciously flavored but also contains a single seed of anise. Thank you so much, Anya, for such a delightful surprise!

So, in honor of my dear friend Anya sending me such a lovely gift, I have selected a tea from Kusmi in Paris, which is called "Anastasia", which is also the name of Anya's lovely daughter. This tea is a blend of Earl Grey with lemon and orange blossom. And to honor their Russian heritage, I have also selected Petrushka and Kashmiri Tchai, for our friends who would like to further warm themselves with traditional Nepalese chai spices. I am wishing Anya and Anastasia a beautiful, warm Christmas!

And to accompany our beautiful teas and chocolate? Something simple, yet beautiful: from the House of Pierre Hermé, a contemporary Buche de Nöel in his Infinement Vanille flavor. Since we are spending our Christmas Eve in front of the fire, a "yule log" seems appropriately symbolic and vanilla is the perfect flavor to accompany our drinks. It's perfect with chocolate, tea, citrus fruit or spice.

And our final treat of the night is a gift to us from my very dear husband, Mr. V! Here are some Christmas pictures from our world:

Diningroom, festooned with red and green chili pepper lights!

Livingroom, with electric candles in the window.

The pattern on the livingroom ceiling, cast by the candles and lace curtains.

The staircase upstairs

Christmas Tree

I'm waiting for Santa!

We wish you the sweetest of Christmas memories and dreams...

"...And to all, a Good Night!"


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

An Invitation...

(Image of Mademoiselle Lina as Santa adapted from the lovely image of Santa, as himself, from Karen of The Graphics Fairy. Thank you!!)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Long Awaited...

Dearest Friends,
Do any of you remember this post from early this year when Mr. V and I were in the process of moving? I created a collage for my friend Kirsi's Collage Obsession challenge blog. I was beyond honored when another friend Anya, who is a very talented modiste (someone who designs and makes hats!) from Couture Millinery Atelier left this comment for me:
"I absolutely love this fabulous collage - I simply can not get over tea cup on the head.So much so that I decided to create a hat inspired by you!:-)"
And guess what?...

Isn't this just such a spectacular hat? I just love everything about it, the colors, the black and white stripes, the black lace trim, just everything!!

This is another view of the hat that she has included in her super eye-catching "Alice in Wonderland" window display for her Atelier in New York. How could you possibly walk past this without stopping to admire?

I am so honored, Dear Anya, that my collage in some small way inspired you in one of your wonderful creations!

Won't you please visit Anya's Atelier and be amazed by more of her beautiful, colorful and creative hats?

(P.S. It is late...Please forgive me, Dear Anya!)
The photos of Anya's hat is used with her very kind permission!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Happy Christmas...

Dearest Friends,
I have finally decorated The Tearoom for the holiday. I hope you will stop and have a cup of tea from the samovar with me...

It is beginning to snow again...

Loveliest wishes of the season to you and all you love,


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Another From The Balloon Vendor...

Just having fun with this theme right now. This one is called "The Balloon Vendor Two - Lips and Roses" and I did it for the collage challenge for The Three Muses. The theme this week is flowers.

Please forgive me if I am thinking of spring instead of the holidays.

Happy surprises to be announced and new items in the Etsy shop too...

Thank you so much to Debra of Valentine Grimm and Josie of Charmed Memory Collage for a lot of the images I'm using.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Balloon Vendor...

First in a new series of collages. . .

I hope everyone is enjoying their holiday preparations and festivities!


(Images used in this collage by Valentine Grimm & Asunder Ephemera)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Roses in the Snow...

Dearest Friends of The Tearoom,
I sincerely hope you all are having a fun and happy Holiday Season so far. It is quiet for Mr. and I here in The Tearoom, all the better for us.

However, as much as I enjoy a hot cup of tea from the samovar, I have never been that much of a fan of fall and winter. Now, I know that a great many people list this as their favorite time of the year. I, however, have an overwhelming desire to hibernate until I see the first daffodil bloom!

I assumed that it was with hibernation in mind that, of all things, roses persisted in creeping their way into my mind. But now I see that I am not the only one thinking of roses!

First, both the venerable Houses of Ladurée and Pierre Hermé had roses on their minds when creating their newest macaron creations!

Ladurée's newest flavor is their Rose Gingembre (Rose Ginger). It is a collaboration between the patissier and the designer John Galliano, whose new fragrance "Parlez-moi d'Amour (Speak to Me of Love)" includes the essences of rose and ginger.

Next, from the house of Monsieur Hermé is a special collection called "Show Chaud Noël" (Hot Christmas Show) including these flavors:

Rose (flavored with rose and rose petals)
Arabella (milk chocolate, banana, passionfruit & ginger confit)
Infiniment Caramel (salted butter caramel)
Infiniment chocolat (Venezuela Porcelana single origin chocolate)
Crème Brulée (vanilla & bits of caramel)
Mogador (milk chocolate & passionfruit)

I recently became aware of another patisserie, which will surely make our "must visit" list the next time we visit Paris! How can you not think of a rose garden when visiting the site of Maison Boissier? The beautiful soft colors and the flavors! I dare you to tell me that the list of flavors of their guimauves (it is very nearly an insult to call them "marshmallows") does not make you dream!. . .

fleur d’oranger (orange blossom), abricot (apricot), citron (lemon),
fraise (strawberry), framboise (raspberry),
mandarine (mandarine orange), myrtille (blueberry),
noix de coco (coconut), citron vert (lime),
vanille (vanilla), violette (violet).

Oh, and "Les Pétales", petals of chocolate in these divine flavors...

Parfums aux fruits : citron vert (lime), clémentine, fraise (strawberry),
pétale lait et noir (milk and dark chocolate petals)
Parfums aux fleurs : rose, violette, verveine (lemon verbena), lavande, jasmin
grué noir (dark chocolate nibs), caramel thé (caramel tea),
menthe lait et noir (mint with milk and dark chocolate).

So, until I can relish the warmth of spring as life returns once again to the earth, these roses are here to bring their stored sunshine to us! Before we know it, we will all be exchanging sprigs of lily-of-valley once again on May Day!

(How nice that the DaDa Dolls will keep us company while we wait!)

Monday, November 1, 2010

I Want to Be Haunted. . .

This is for my love, Mr. V. He brought this song to my attention a few days ago from the "Sid and Nancy" soundtrack and then left this video on the desktop of the computer tonight and so I dedicate it to him. Since 1984, he has brought music, love and light into my life. His influence haunted my life for 18 years while we were apart and now we are together. He is my rock when I don't feel steady. I would be lost without him.

From B to V, my love always.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Fog Creeps In On Little Cat Feet . . .

Won't you join me, Dearest Friends of The Tearoom? It's a quiet, foggy night. Doesn't the fog make it feel quite cozy in here?

Last year, at this time, it was quite a bit more lively, but this year, I hope you will not mind a bit of quiet.

In the background floats the haunting notes of our playlist for the night:
Violet Town by The Church
Under the Milky Way by The Church
Temperamental (Pull Timewarp Remix) by Everything But the Girl
As the Rush Comes (Gabriel & Dresden Chillout Mix) - Motorcycle
Ohureo by Baka Beyond
Svefn-G-Englar by Sigur Rós
Terrorist by The Teardrop Explodes

And of course I have treats...

Our dessert tonight comes by most gracious permission of Joyti of Darjeeling Dreams (Thank you, Joyti). She has the most wonderful blog full of her own recipes for delicious desserts, complete with beautiful photographs. Tonight, won't you please have a piece of her blackberry and champagne cake? And to drink with it? A lushly scented tea, Trois Fruits Noirs (Three Black Fruits) by Betjeman & Barton of Paris, perfumed with the scents of blackberry, black currant and bilberry. Won't you please help yourself to a cup waiting for you in the samovar?

As a special treat, my love Mr. V has agreed to share with us some photographs he took of the foggy evening outside. . .

And so in quiet repose, we spend a Halloween evening in reflection, wrapped in the fog, warmed by candlelight and the steam from your tea.

Now, if you will please excuse me. The Countess' teacup is nearly empty. . .

"They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." -Edgar Allen Poe

Happy Halloween

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Where Have You Been, My Deer?

This dear (deer?) creature is late for the Carnival. He is very sorry but he has a good excuse. During the creation of the Carnival, he was rattling around in my imagination, as part of the Menagerie. It wasn't until after the Carnival that I found the exactly perfect image I needed to make him come to life from The Magical Karen of The Graphics Fairy!! She always has such great images!!! And it is like Christmas everyday when you look at her blog because all of her images are free! Thank you, Karen!!

So, won't you please offer him a handful of raspberries to show him that his tardiness is forgiven?

(Both deer and hand with raspberries images from The Graphics Fairy.)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Midnight Carnival

Dearest Friends,
Welcome Once Again to The Tearoom!

Oh, I have waited so long for this!
I have counted my pennies.
I have counted the days on the calendar!

And now it is here!

I am so very happy to see you again, my dearest friends!
I have been away too long.

Do you still have the ticket I gave you earlier?
Here are the rest!

Welcome to The Midnight Carnival at The Gossamer Tearoom!
I am so very happy to be part of the festivities at Mademoiselle Vanessa's Halloween Party at A Fanciful Twist! Don't forget to visit her and the other attendees!

What is your favorite thing to do at a carnival?
Wouldn't it be fun to begin by having our fortunes told?

Please step right this way!

This is Madame Circe, teller of fortunes, revealer of futures...

This is the card she has drawn for you...

(Sometimes Madame Circe surprises us by telling us not just what we need to know for later, but what we need to know right now.)

So many fun things to do and see!

Don't miss the Tightrope Walker
Mademoiselle Bon-Bon Oiseau!
(And, no, I don't think it's cheating to be a tightrope walker if you have wings! It just makes it a bit easier!!)

Please follow Mademoiselle Blanchette de Noire, Mistress of the Menagerie...

These animals are a bit unusual. But do not let their appearance frighten you...

(I promise they do not bite!)

Wouldn't you love a ride on the Cherry Velvet Ferris Wheel?

Or on the Magical Flying Cars?

I'm sure you are ready for a treat.
Please walk this way...

This is Mademoiselle Absynthia...

...She is so happy to see you and would like to offer you a delicious treat!

Our extra-fun carnival would not be possible today without the inspiration and images by some of the most talented people I have ever known. I am so grateful for all of the lovely people I have met here and with great pleasure, I would like you to meet some of them:
-Marsha of Tumblefish
(Thank you so much for all of the fresh inspiration! I hope you like what I have done!)
-Jerry of Shadowhouse Design
(Thank you for the great backgrounds!)
-Kathy of KF Collection
(Yes, I will be letting you know when we are in town next! Thank you!)
And hugs to my dear friends Marie-France, Julia and Kirsi:
-Marie-France of Marie's Freebies and
-Julia of Cemerony and Cemerony Share
-Kirsi of Itkupilli
And thank you so much to those I don't know as well, but appreciate so much all the same:
-Cristina of Asunder Ephemera
-Alison of Harmonica Goldfish
-Karen of Graphics Fairy
-Sabrina of Sabrina Zanetti

Our Dear Friend Mademoiselle Moon sees us home, dressed as an antique doll, such a sometimes spooky, sometimes silly friend she is to us!

And so we wish "Good-Night" to our new friends of the Carnival!

Happiest of Halloweens to all Friends of The Tearoom!