What an incredibly fun time I had yesterday! I finally got to meet my tea friend Belinda from Greenville, S.C., a lovely lady I'd gotten to know here in the tea world but whom I'd never actually met face to face. Here are Belinda (at right) and myself at Holly Cottage Tearoom here in Newnan!
Belinda was actually enjoying a girlfriend trip to Holly Cottage with four other ladies, and I can honestly say I loved them all immediately! Clockwise from left are Sharon, me, Belinda, Phyllis, Ruth and Anne. Ruth is actually the pastor's wife at the Presbyterian church these ladies attend together. I greatly enjoyed hearing about their work with the tea ministry and learning who does what. Belinda is the one who first had a heart for this ministry, and Phyllis joked that she and Belinda were doing "research" by eating at this tearoom. I already knew that Belinda and I both enjoy cooking teatime treats, and I learned that Phyllis and I are both huge fans of Jan Karon (I'm in the beginning of Jan's newest book, and Phyllis says some surprises are in store). Sharon, I learned, washes the dishes after the church teas, and she and I immediately bonded as fellow firstborns. It is amazing how much you can learn about a group of ladies in such a short time when they are as friendly and welcoming as these were!
I was intrigued to learn the ladies' pastor is Scottish, and I so enjoyed getting to hear his wife Ruth's wonderful accent, along with that of her equally delightful friend Anne, who was visiting from Scotland and joined these ladies for the trip. (I should have photographed her standing, as she wore a beautiful knit top with a teapot near the hem!) Here, Ruth and Anne are going all out in the hat department with their "Southern belle" look. Our time together passed all too quickly, but I certainly was blessed to get to spend a few hours with such a fun bunch of tea-loving ladies!