On May 10th we had our 3rd Lots of Love Tea Party. You may not be aware of how much we completely depend on God to bring this fund raiser together each year. I hope to give you a glimpse of that.
Normally we have the tea party in March. We had expected to do the same thing this year. However, we could not secure a location. Through this He showed us that we were supposed to do this fund raiser by donation instead of having a ticket price. Rather than try to force something that God seemed to be blocking we discussed it as a board just a few weeks before we had planned to have it. None of us doubted that if God wanted to, He could put it together in two weeks! That didn’t seem to be what He wanted though and we settled on the date of May 10th. Just a few weeks later the location basically fell in our lap! A friend of Lisa’s mentioned a church where she attended CBS. She contacted them and the administrative assistant talked to the Deacons of the church and got the fee for the space waived. After struggling to find a location before, this was a sure sign that God was approving of our new date!
The person who headed up this fund raiser was not able to this year, so I said I would do it. I knew God wanted me to do it. I’m not sure why, since I know absolutely nothing about Tea Parties! The most daunting of tasks on the list was to find door prizes. To go into places and ask for money is definitely not my “thing”! God used this to grow me in this area, especially since two of the places I visited said yes but said I would need to come back at a later date. It was quite intimidating, but God was faithful and provided gift certificates to three different dining places.
After crossing door prizes off my list I focused in on the food. Sandwiches and scones were my big worry. I had resolved that I’d have to make them myself even though I am basically a failure at anything in the kitchen (more on that later!). A week or so before the tea I received a call from one of my hostesses that she could no longer host her table. She felt bad and offered to help with food to which I replied…sandwiches, I need someone to make sandwiches! She gladly accepted the task. While on the phone with her, call waiting beeped in. Before panicking about my new hostess crisis I called my friend back. She was asking if there was anything else I needed for the Tea. I quickly asked if she could hostess the table! She graciously said yes. God did not even give me time to panic about finding another hostess! Oh and this dear, wonderful friend also offered to take care of scones and even make shortbread as well! I still needed someone to make the other half of the sandwiches though.
I toyed with the idea of buying them. But it seemed unjustifiable to spend the organization’s money when I could make egg salad for much cheaper than purchasing it. I found a recipe online and thought, easy enough! I headed to the store and bought what I needed. Did I mention I had never before hard boiled eggs? I hadn’t. From what I’ve been told, the recipe was an impossible one. It didn’t seem odd to me when I was reading it that it called for me “carefully” placing the eggs into a boiling pot of water. Upon actually doing it, they were immediately ruined and I was in tears. Lisa called me and prayed with me and assured me that it was okay to purchase the egg salad needed for the sandwiches, which I did.
We arrived to set up at 11:00. The tea started at 1:00. Thankfully, I had sent my oldest child to spend the night with a friend the night before. This was completely unplanned but orchestrated by God. She dropped off my son and her son to help, but saw we needed extra help and stayed. She was willing to do anything that was needed and was a big part of the reason that we finished setting up before people started arriving! Around 12:30, I received a text saying that one of my hostesses was having car trouble and wouldn’t be there until much later. It was this same friend that graciously stepped into that role on such short notice and did a wonderful job!
The party itself went wonderfully well. We were joined by a dear woman and her two five year old boys who we had helped in the past. Her son with down’s syndrome wanted to help the entertainers play piano and guitar. It was awesome to see the face of why we do what we do here at For the Love of Grace. Another family was scheduled to be there to speak but her son became ill on the way to the tea. This dear woman spoke instead even though she wasn’t planning on it.
Afterwards, everyone helped clean up which was so sweet of them. If it weren’t for the tea sets getting mixed up (I knew I should have taken pictures!) it would have been perfect. Thank God for texting and phones that can take and send pictures or we might not have gotten it figured out!
Thank you so much to everyone who came and if you weren’t able to this year, I hope you can next year. It truly is a wonderfully blessed time for a great cause!