A kids’ tea party is a great way to build memories that last a lifetime and it doesn’t have to be fancy or take a lot of time. A couple of flavors of Lipton tea, some milk and sugar, and a little snack is all it takes to create weekly quality time that your kids will remember forever.
We are a big family and all of us are pretty close. Although four of my eight kids are out on their own now we still check in with each other regularly. With three in the military (Las Vegas, Jacksonville, and Korea) and one 20 minutes away I think that I’ve been successful with my “new mom” goal of having kids that were supportive of each other. A lot of people have asked me about parenting and parenting advice and the only thing I can say is that strong family bonds are built with strong family memories.
With eight kids it can be tough to find time to relax. Early on I decided that I would take an hour a day to just kick back with a cup of tea and listen to classical music — because it soothed my frayed mommy-nerves. One day I was having my quiet time when one of the kids came in and asked if they could have some tea, too. I am not sure why it hadn’t occurred to me before but all of a sudden it hit me that I had the opportunity to create some family memories easily and on a regular basis.
And that’s how my kids’ tea party got started. Only it definitely was not just for the kids.
When I was homeschooling it was a daily ritual. As the kids got older and things got crazier it was less scheduled and more impromptu but we still enjoyed it when it happened. Today my kids range from age 12 to 33 and they all enjoy a variety of tea flavors and types. And we are still making memories with tea — it’s just that now it’s likely to include my three grandchildren, too.
It’s not a complex fancy thing to do, either. Sure, those images in Victoria magazine are gorgeous but the point is not to have beautiful pictures. The point of this is to have beautiful memories, right? Sometimes I like to make scones and small sandwiches but just as often it could be cinnamon toast or just some candies.
I like to collect antique and vintage dishes — especially teacups. I’d let each child pick a teacup and then pick a flavor of tea. Over the years they learned to appreciate the antiques as well as the tea that was in them. The learned what blue transferware was, and how it differed from flow blue china. It’s amazing what kids will pick up in casual conversation!
Also, it helped with manners. We had a rule that we had to be on our best behavior during our tea time. Over the years we had some pretty interesting conversations as well as plenty of impromptu teachable moments. We listened to the various classical composers, we listened to opera, we looked at different artists’ works, and we tried new foods. We learned how to speak softly, say please pass the sugar, and take the time to say nice things about each other. It was a time to build relationship — no arguing or mean comments.
And we learned to enjoy lots of different kinds of tea.
If you think of the classic orange pekoe tea when you think of Lipton you couldn’t be more mistaken. Lipton has come out with some bold new flavors in black, herbal, and green tea varieties. Some of the herbal and green teas are especially child friendly with fruity flavors and bright colors. I can tell you that the Acai, Dragonfruit, Melon Green Tea is a favorite here — and it’s fabulous with a little sugar. It can be served iced as well — so much better for kids than those sugary, artificially flavored drinks. Flavors like Enticing Chai, Orange Passionfruit Jasmine, and Peach Mango update the whole tea drinking experience with bold and stimulating flavors that are as enticing to you as they are to your kids. Check out the full line-up of Lipton Green, Black and Herbal tea flavors here. They are perfect for your kids’ tea party.
Don’t get me wrong, this kids’ tea party is not “one more thing” you do for your kids. This is a sneaky way to get some time to relax without having to worry if one child is trying to flush the other down the toilet. This is most definitely something you’ll look forward to. The strong family memories you’re making are an added benefit.
My eldest daughter is a busy mom with three kids. When she posts pictures on Facebook of her pink cast iron teapot and a steaming cup of tea it makes me smile. I know that tea is a comforting, relaxing time for her in part because of our tradition. When my son who is stationed in Korea texts me and says, “Mom you’ve got to try this tea! I’ll bring you some next time I am home!” it makes my heart swell with warmth because I know that tea is a connection with home. When the grandkids come over they oven ask if we can have a tea party — and of course we do.
If you know me at all you know that I am totally committed to family. My kids are the best things I have ever done in my life and the most important things I’ve ever invested in. I’ve spent hours coming up with ways to make strong family memories but nothing has been as easy, as inexpensive, and as quick to do as my simple kids’ tea party.
If your kids are grown up you’ll understand when I say that the time you have your children with you at home is so fleeting! Some days I think I would give up almost anything to have just a few of those golden hours back when all of them were small. If you are a mom with young children at home I can only say I totally understand the exhaustion and frustration but it will pass all too quickly. Figure out a way to create long lasting memories for your family and do it regularly — like my tea party.
It won’t be long before you’re sitting at the table drinking tea all by yourself.
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I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.Let's Keep in Touch!