Afternoon tea has been a part of life since I was a very young child. It's an incredibly meaningful time to me so I was delighted when my husband revealed what he wanted to do for Mother's Day. It's been a while since I took tea at one of our local hotels, and as it's unlikely to be a resumed practice anytime soon it was a pleasure to share the essence of what made afternoon tea so special with him. From the service to the presentation to the savory and sweet bites, he listened and prepared the most magical celebration with our children. It was so thoughtful, probably the most wondrously hilarious Mother's Day I've ever had, and it will live in my heart forever.
Meet 'Zachary' aka my son with all the ideas and a clear love of character creation.
From beginning to end the entire family coordinated to bring their Mother's Day plans to fruition. They cooked and baked together, pouring love and all the laughter heard from the kitchen into every freshly made scones, desserts, and tea sandwiches, but Jackson took the charm to the next level. He had a grandiose vision of how the day would be, and while my husband assured him it would be great he had to gently lower some of those expectations. As expected our son rolled with it and decided he'd put his own spin on things by playing the part of the maître d of Maison du Quon.
He set the table, playing with the napkins until they were styled to his liking, then he went to his room so he could study how to best write Zachary's name tag in script. As a nod to our current home he even included a basket by our chairs as they do in all restaurants in Japan! I was tickled pink by the attention to detail.
While Shannon manned the kitchen for purposes of plating the courses, 'Zachary' would deliver each in a flourishing accent. He had the well-heeled manners a mama could be proud of and an iron fist that had the primary chef de cuisine scurrying back to work. It left Madeline and I in stitches. PS- If you're ever in need of a sommelier, Zachary is available for all your post-quarantine needs. His palate is incredibly refined *wink*.
Shannon and Madeline made the most delightful bacon, cheese, and scallion scones to go with our egg salad sandos from 7/11 and Shannon's cream cheese and chive cucumber sandwiches. Yes, I said 7/11, and yes, it was said in the same way that I'd say Windsor Court or The Ritz Carlton because Japan's 7/11 is not America's 7/11. It is amazing-and I'm not exaggerating. Clean with quality, fresh food, drinks, and seasonal treats, it is the better end quick food items you want for the combini (or convenience store) prices you'd expect.
Madeline shared tea with me and that made me very happy. She is my favorite person to take it with, and considering how amazingly she did during her sophomore year, how hard she worked from such a great distance, she deserved the treat-and goodness did we have some!
There were some mini-eclairs and macarons from Picard, lemon meringue tarts, strawberry and chocolate treats from Burdigala, and the yummiest preserves, curd, and clotted cream for our sweet scones. They were a lovely balance to our savories.
I gladly welcomed the complete fall and lengthy rolling away from the clean-eating wagon for this day. For the hilarity, the memories made and decadent delights it was worth it, but more than that, the entire gesture was appreciated. The thoughtfulness put into each part of the tea was deeply heartfelt, and while it was a different Mother's Day, one not born of choice but necessity, it showed me how much extra care we have been showing one another in the ways we spend time together and how we consider each other.
It's a complicated time, a different time for us all, but for our family it's brought out some beautiful things and irreplaceable moments we wouldn't have had otherwise. I'm so grateful that my Mother's Day was one day of many where we were all able to enjoy it together. And that is something worth cheering to!