friday favorites

Friday Favorites: Holiday Tea at the Arizona Biltmore

Last week Steve had a conference at the Arizona Biltmore, and I was happy to tag along. The Biltmore is famous for its architecture, beautiful grounds, celebrity guests, and . . . afternoon tea! The hotel has a fascinating history and offers cozy elegance along with...

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Friday Favorites: Cozy Christmas Tea Party 2019

Does it seem like the holidays are rushing right past you? One way to slow time and enjoy this festive season is to sit down to a holiday-themed afternoon tea. Today I'm sharing a tea I hosted at home just last week, and in particular I'd like to highlight some of the...

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Part II: Ghostly and Gothic SPOOKY films

Oh, how I love a good GHOST film! Ghosts and/or related paranormal entities feature in each of the following recommendations. All film synopses are from imdb.com. The Wind (2018) -- Rated R A plains-woman faces the harshness and isolation of the untamed land in the...

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Friday Favorites: Tea on Mackinac Island

Our final tea adventure of the summer took place at The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. We warmed up with a hike to Fort Mackinac, followed by an 8 mile bike ride around the island. By the time we reached the hotel we were ready for refreshment. Tea service begins at...

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Friday Favorites: Tea in Cedar Falls, Iowa

Recently we attended a reunion in Iowa, as my brother and his wife had flown in from Japan to introduce their son to the American side of the family. I loved meeting little Hal (he is DELICIOUS) and spending time with people I don't see as often as I'd like. I also...

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Friday Favorites: Tea in Georgetown

Every time we travel I strive to thoroughly explore the tea options in that area. As it turns out, Georgetown has a lot to offer! 1. Ladurée I've had the pleasure of visiting this French tea room in Paris, London, and New York. Now I can add Washington DC to the list....

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Friday Favorites: Tea in Brooklyn

As you might have guessed, when visiting a city I always check out the tea scene. Turns out Brooklyn has a lot of tea to offer! I'd already done my research and planned three tea experiences ahead of time, so imagine my surprise when I randomly walked past this store...

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Friday Favorites: North and South (2004)

A little while ago this article reminded me of one of my very favorite costume dramas of all time: the BBC adaptation of Elizabeth's Gaskell's North and South, which premiered nearly 15 years ago. Reading the article filled me with such nostalgia and yearning that I...

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Friday Favorites: Reading Nooks

Recently I was asked my opinion on what makes for an ideal reading nook. The first thing to come to mind was an image from my childhood copy of Louisa May Alcott's Little Women: "Jo! Jo! Where are you?" cried Meg at the foot of the garret stairs. "Here!" answered a...

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Friday Favorites: Holiday reading list!

The following is my first stab at an exhaustive list of December holiday-themed fiction for adults and kids. Books that I have read and recommend are indicated with an asterisk (*). I've linked each title to Goodreads so that you can see reviews and click through to...

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Friday Favorites: Disney Magic

It's been a week since we returned from a Disney World trip with my nieces, and it surprises me how much I miss the place. There was a time when I thought I was too old for Disney, but now I find myself already fantasizing about another visit. What is it about Disney...

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Friday Favorites: Holiday reads

You know me -- during this season I love to listen to Christmas music, watch Hallmark Christmas movies, and read Christmas-themed fiction. I have four books to recommend, two of which were intended for children (tho they certainly have appeal for adults, as well). The...

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Friday Favorites: Prince Edward Island

At long last here are a few photos from our trip to Canada. I've wanted to visit PEI since I was a child, and many (many!) years later the dream finally came true. We enjoyed one day in Halifax before driving up to the island. Everywhere we went the locals were...

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Friday Favorites: Writing Retreats

A couple of days ago I returned from a seven night Kindling Words West retreat in Marble Falls, TX. The Retreat at Balcones Springs offered cozy cabins and beautiful scenery, and our workshop leaders Nancy Werlin and Karen Romano Young provided guidance on how to find...

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