Wednesday, November 01, 2006

C11 - Letterboxing Tea Party

Caroline's 11th birthday came upon us pretty quickly once we settled into the new school year. She decided on a Letterboxing Tea Party which by definition was a Letterboxing Party and a Tea Party rolled into one. The first question asked by almost all, was "What is letterboxing?" Our answer was "Google it!" The second question was "What should we wear?" Our answer "Whatever you like."

Letterboxing is kind of like going on a treasure hunt. Traditional letterboxing begins with clues (nowadays found on the internet) that lead the seeker to a carefully hidden, weatherproof box. The box will contain a small notebook and a unique rubber stamp. The seeker carries her own notebook, unique rubber stamp, and an ink pad. When the box is found, and after making sure no one has seen the find, the seeker stamps her own book with the box's stamp, and the box's book with her stamp. She then carefully hides the box exactly as it was found. That's it.

Our version included four boxes all with clues beginning from the small pumpkin on our front porch. I don't know where the boxes were hidden or what the clues said. I delegated those tasks to David who is great at hiding things and writing clues. The girls reported back that one clue was confusing - he used the term "sliding board" which baffled several of the girls. It's a good thing we don't have teeter-totter! It was fun to watch the girls running all over our yard looking for the boxes. There were a few mishaps - a headful of burrs and a few scrapes, but nothing too serious!

After the 3 groups of girls found each of the four boxes it was time for the tea party. The kitchen table was dressed in yellow and white. Yellow is Caroline's current color of choice. We set out the best china and arranged yellow roses. Each girl's place was set with a different tea cup - all from my two grandmothers' collections of friendship cups.

Caroline had filled little swans with creamy mints to set at each girl's place. They devoured tea sandwiches, strawberries with whipped cream and mints. The cakes were yellow and white and decorated with daisies. The girls drank gallons of tea and hot cider. They doctored their tea with many sugar cubes, honey sticks and cream. The best comment was "I love this. There are so many wonderful choices."

After tea, the girls made sachets and Caroline opened her presents. The girls then retreated outside to the tire swing and treehouse where they stayed until their parents collected them. It was definitely a party to remember.

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