As many of you know, my daughter received a very meaningful gift from my parents in honor of her graduation. To celebrate her upcoming transition from middle to high school, it was decided that an afternoon of tea at The Peninsula in Beverly Hills would be perfect. We had no idea.
It has been a very taxing two weeks for Madeline. Wrapping up classes, projects, papers, final exams...she was bone tired by Friday night. By Saturday morning her reserves seemed to be depleted; she looked exhausted. A part of me was tempted to postpone our event for another time, but she insisted she'd be fine. We left in the early afternoon for our tea and when we arrived at the hotel, Madeline was perking up. The idea of sitting quietly with a hot cup of tea and savory dishes were clearly comforting to her. We had to wait a few minutes (which allowed us the chance to wander around), but once seated, the fatigue my sweet girl had been feeling melted away. She was in heaven.
Held in the elegantly appointed Living Room, our table was in a private alcove off of the main floor. It suited us just fine as it set us away from the larger groups. It also gave us the opportunity to appreciate the details that made our tea so special. We sat at a beautiful walnut antique game table with hem-stiched linens and Bernadotte china. Each cup, saucer, and plate were hand painted for the specific use of afternoon tea. I love little things like that! It elevates a special occasion just a bit more.
After ordering the Royal Tea, mother drinking Black Currant, and Madeline and I sharing a pot of Earl Grey, we began to talk about future special tea's: 16th birthday, high school graduation...it was a little overwhelming to think so far ahead, so we broke to order champagne for the adults and ice waters. It was the perfect time for my mother to give Madeline her graduation cards. She was thankful, and so happy that we three girls could get away for this time with one another.
Before we knew it, our pots of tea arrived, and the loveliest silver tiered trays carrying our treats were set before us. It was incredible. From the sandwiches to the scones, every bite was perfection. Surprisingly, my personal favorite was a curried chicken salad with a touch of chutney on top. It's not something I'd normally enjoy, but it's all I've been thinking of since! It was a perfect blend of spice and sweetness~especially on the raisin bread.
Madeline's favorites were the scones. Our waiter was kind enough to bring her extra, and that was just another thing that made our afternoon so pleasent. The waitstaff was courteous, quick, and generous with their assistance. It's something you expect from a place such as The Peninsula, but you never know.
Eventually the conversation faded and we relaxed in our seats as a harpist played. We read, we rested, we recharged. Madeline remarked that she was so happy for the afternoon out. It was just what she needed.
Thank you again, Mom and Daddy. There is something incredibly restorative in tea, and it was a delight to share it during a celebration of someone so special to us all. We're grateful for your constant presence and love in Madeline's life. It makes moments like this past Saturday all the more sweet.