Rose Tea Cottage

Where tea is served at half past four

My darlings, The Duchess (the other Duchess) has gone into labour.
Will the third in line to the throne be a boy or a girl?

Happy Easter My darlings

A scoopful of sweets for my sweets
Happy Wednesday my darlings

My darlings I thank you all for dropping by my cottage and for the kind notes you left behind. I missed you all so terribly.
Happy weekend my darlings.

Happy Heart Day My Darlings

Hello my darlings, where do I begin? It has been far too long since my last post when sadly and unexpectedly my life took a wrong turn. Bit by bit, my days are starting to take on a semblance of order and I am now ready to slowly resume blogging after a long hiatus.

I am completely lost for words to express the love and gratitude I feel for you, my precious friends. Your frequent visits and sincere concerned comments during my absence are immensely appreciated. It is so heartwarming to see that I have not been forgotten and that you have missed me as much as I have missed you. You are all so good to me my darlings. I wish I could reach into my screen and hug each and every one of you.

It's good to be back.
I will stop by for a cuppa soon.

The days come and go like muffled and veiled figures
sent from a distant friendly place carrying gifts,
and if we do not use the gifts they bring,
they carry them silently away.
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

My darlings I wish you sunny days filled with gifts
and the wisdom to enjoy them all wisely.

"Ma chère bonne, if you are not feeling well, if you have not slept, chocolate will revive you. But you have no chocolate! I think of that again and again! Ma chère, how will you ever manage? Please believe that I love you as much as the chocolate we shall savour together."

Written by Madame Marie de Rabutin-Chantal, Marquise de Sévigné in a letter to her daughter, Françoise-Marguerite de Sévigné, Comtesse de Grignan ~ 1670

This weekend, I am planning to sit back, relax, eat lots of chocolate and simply enjoy the sunshine. A big heartfelt thank you to you my darlings for your lovely comments and a warm welcome to my new followers. Wishing you a fabulous weekend full of sweetness.

My Summer Favourites...
Sun-drenched days and starlit nights
Picnics by the creek
Reading romance novels whilst sipping
Afternoon tea in the garden
Building sandcastles whilst watching waves foaming at the shore
Strawberries and peaches
Napping in the afternoon
Sleeveless cotton floral dresses
Pink toenails
Dreamy, creamy Cornish ice cream

And yours darling?

One of the nicest things about life is the way
we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing
and devote our attention to eating.

~Luciano Pavarotti
Pavarotti, My Own Story

Lady R and I thank you sincerely for your good wishes and prayers. She is now home resting comfortably following two difficult and painful operations. I have persuaded her to start yoga and to replace her regular diet with organic lean protein, fruits and vegetables to strengthen her immune system whilst getting her mind and body ready for her upcoming chemotherapy. Please continue to pray for her.

My darlings be good to yourselves and remember
the greatest wealth is health.

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever
its loveliness increases, it will never pass into nothingness
but still will keep a bower quiet for us,
and a sleep full of sweet dreams, health, and quiet breathing ....

~ John Keats

My darlings I pray that each day carries a "Thing of Beauty" for you.

Miss you all lots and lots...

Aunt Millie's Victoria Sandwich Cake Recipe
A British Recipe with A French Twist
Happy Baking My Darlings

For the Cakes
225g / 8oz self-raising flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
225g / 8oz caster sugar
225g / 8oz softened butter
4 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1½ teaspoon ground cardamom
6 tablespoon of double cream
4 tablespoon of Grand Marnier Orange Liqueur

For the Filling
8 tablespoons of strawberry jam (preferably homemade)
4 teaspoons of Framboise Raspberry Liqueur mixed into the jam
300ml / 10½ oz double cream, lightly whipped

For best results, start with room-temperature ingredients
Heat oven to 180C / 350F /Gas 4
Butter two 20cm/7 inch tins, line with non-stick baking and set aside
In a bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, cardamom, salt and set aside
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until pale and creamy, using an electric whisk or a wooden spoon. Beat well to get lots of air into the mixture, this should take about 5 minutes
Beat in the eggs one at a time
Add the double cream and Grand Marnier at this point
Add the vanilla and mix well
Fold in the flour mixture. Be careful not to over-mix
Divide the mixture evenly between the prepared tins and level the surface with the back of a spoon or a plastic spatula.
Place in the oven and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until the cakes spring back when pressed gently with a finger and are pale golden in colour
Leave the cakes to cool in the tins for 10 minutes
Turn the cakes out on to a wire rack, peel off the paper and leave to cool completely
Spread the sponge with the jam and the whipped cream, then carefully sandwich together
Dust with icing sugar and serve

A friend is one of the nicest things you can have
and one of the best things you can be
~Douglas Pagels

Nearly a year ago, when I started my blog, my intention was to share with you my love of afternoon tea, poetry and all things pink, sweet, rosy and lovely. I never intended to write about my personal life, be it sorrow or joy. As months passed and my blog took form, something unexpected and magical happened!!!

♥♥ Global Friendships ♥♥

Truth be told, I never thought it would be possible to form such genuine friendship with virtual strangers miles and miles away. However, it did happen and in abundance at that. As time passed, I found myself sharing with you, my lovely friends, the joys and sorrows of my everyday life. In addition, I rejoiced, saddened, and prayed for events happening in your lives.

Based on the above, when this latest calamity happened,
my first reaction was to run to my laptop, prepare a post, and ask you, my friends, for your prayers. However, I quickly stopped myself not wanting to bring about grey clouds to your day.

Tonight, sitting down at my laptop exhausted and sleep-deprived appreciatively looking at all the unreciprocated visits you have made to my cottage, the 300 plus unanswered sweet and thoughtful comments and emails that are sitting in my inbox waiting for a reply, and all of the lovely new faces on my follower gadget who recently joined my blog and are waiting to be welcomed, made me realise I better share my heartbreaking news with you. You see my darlings, I don't want you to think that I have been ignoring you, no no no, far from it. It's your visits and comments that have given me joy and have been my lifeline during this difficult time. I do have every intention in responding to each and every one but realise I fall short of the mark day after day. So I question myself, how could I simultaneously balance my blogging duties and be a comfort to those who need me at the moment?

My darlings, my best friend, whom I’ve lovingly nicknamed Lady R was recently diagnosed with cancer. Lady R and I met 32 years ago and have been inseparable ever since. Together we have faced life’s challenges...growing up, school, dating, marriages, children, divorce, losing loved ones. We have stood hand in hand and side by side, through good and bad, happy and sad, up and down, thin and thick, good health and now illness.

Lady R has been such a huge part of my life; I just can’t imagine life without her. Upon learning of this devastating news, I have spent every possible moment with her and have unremittingly prayed for her recovery. I feel totally helpless. The only offering I have, is my time and comforting words, which she, her husband and her children so desperately need. Therefore, I have decided to devote all my spare time to them for now and place my blogging duties on hold for a short time.

My darlings, given that I have a number of posts ready to be put up, I will periodically release a post; however, I am afraid my visits to your lovely blogs will sadly be sparse for a short time, do forgive me my lovelies. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for the solicitous comments and emails you have posted for me during my absence,
I am truly blessed to have you all in my life my sweets.

One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon-instead of enjoying the roses blooming outside our own windows today.
~Dale Carnegie

In the past week, once again I have realised how capricious and how precious life truly is. My darlings don't take a moment of your lives for granted. Live your lives to the fullest and just know that with every passing moment you are given yet another chance to turn it all around with no excuses and no regrets.

A cup of tea to say thank you for all the things you've done
And wishes that the day will bring you happiness and fun

My lovely friend Bernideen has bestowed upon me the
"Blogger Friendship Award". Her blog is loaded with beautifully presented afternoon tea related posts and lovely photos. Do take a moment to pop in for a cup of tea and a bite to eat.

My darlings, life has suddenly placed too many crème scones on my Royal Albert plate. I am a little encumbered by my impending trip and by life's this and that. I'm doing the best I can, and promise you all that I will stop by to take tea with you soon and remember my lovelies
"When it is dark enough, you can see the stars" ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Always remember to forget the things that made you sad
But never forget to remember the things that made you glad

Always remember to forget the friends that proved untrue
But never forget to remember those that have stuck by you

Always remember to forget the troubles that passed away
But never forget to remember the blessings that come each day

My darlings wishing you a week full of sweet blessings.

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