Lona Stensrud was all smiles in her red hat. Enjoying the tea were: (left to right) Virginia Drackley, Becky Peterson and Lois VanDePutte.Loralee Miller read from the book, “A Cup of Christmas Tea.” Eyeing the tray of scones was Maxine Yeo. The special cup commemorates the book.Dorie Teigland poured a cup of “Christmas Tea” for Nancy Buysse as Beth Brewers looked on.Eyeing the tray of scones was Maxine Yeo.

'A Christmas Tea'

“A Cup of Christmas Tea” is the story of a young man’s reluctant visit to an elderly aunt at Christmas time, and the unexpected joy that it brings. Loralee Miller never gets tired of the story. She’s read it and heard it a hundred times.

But perhaps, like a young child who pages through the book, she might have to say, “I like to look at the pictures.” In this case, they’re illustrations, and her cousin, Warren Hanson, illustrated them for this very special book.

“This is Mom and Dad’s copy,” said Miller as she read, “A Cup of Christmas Tea,” to the crowd gathered at the Minneota Senior Center last week.

“The book dates back to 1982 and this copy was given to us by Warren (Hanson).” As she read through the pages of “A Cup of Christmas Tea”, the story seemed to come alive and dance off the pages.

Minneota’s own “Christmas Tea” played to a crowd of about 75 ladies, some with “classy hats,” and all dressed for the special moment. Thomas Hegg wrote the now famous book that’s read every Christmas on WCCO Radio. “I enjoy that. It takes me back,” said Miller.

In addition to the reading of "A Cup of Christmas Tea", the Minneota women enjoyed a “three-course” menu as they dined to delicacies.

The first course was, “Sandwiches and Savories.” They included: Caramelized Onion Pastries; Mini Orange Muffins with Smoked Turkey; Chicken Salad Tea Sandwiches with Toasted Almonds, Watercress Egg Salad Sandwiches and Cucumber Tea Sandwiches.

Once consumed and digested, the menu moved on to: “Scones and Curd”. That part of the tea included: Mini Raspberry White Chocolate Scones; Lemon Blueberry Scones; Lemon Curd and Mock Devonshire Cream. Remember, each needs to be savored and digested.

The third and final course was the, “Sweets.” They included: Individual Plum Puddings; Christmas Tree Meringues; Chocolate Cherry Christmas Bars; Cranberry-Orange Shortbread; Peppermint Melting Moments; Fruit Tarts with Brandy Pastry Cream; Brown Sugar Cashew Fudge and Chocolate Dipper Apricots. Oh yes, and, “A Cup of Christmas Tea.”

The book and teapot were part of the Minneota Christmas Tea.

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