CONGRATULATIONS

Carrie Fancett Pagels' "The Substitute Bride" in O' Little Town of Christmas collection is a 2016 Published MAGGIE AWARD FINALIST in Romance Novellas!!!


Tea Party winners: Tamera Lynn Kraft's winner is Sherida Stewart, Debra E. Marvin's winner Deana Dick for Ebook of Starlight Serenade, Debora Wilder for Winner's Choice (movies or cookbook), Carrie Fancett Pagels’ winner of choice of ebook or paperback of Tea Shop Folly goes to Teri DiVincenzo and ebook of Love's Sporting Chance goes to Becky Dempsey. Carrie's special unannounced pink heart shaped cup and saucer goes to Melissa Henderson who attended both parties! CONGRATS and thanks for partying with us, colonial style!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Tea Party for Washington's Birthday & Book Launch - Before the Scarlet Dawn



In honor of Rita Gerlach's new release, Before the Scarlet Dawn we are having a book launch. And we are doing it at George Washington's 280th birthday tea party, served by his wife, Martha.


Pull up a chair, specify your tea preference, and have a slice of Martha's cherry pye, George's favorite, and we'll introduce ourselves.  You do the same!


GIVEAWAYS: For the young or the young-at-heat we have a large bag of revolutionary war soldiers!  A copy of Rita's new book.  And a few other colonial goodies, one being a finger vase from Berkeley Plantation that looks quite similar to the one below.




68 comments:

  1. Hearty congratulations on the release of your lovely book, Mrs. Gerlach! I am a true lover of literature, so greatly enjoyed closing myself into my room with your masterpiece in hand. My brother was all relief, too, that I had something to read other than Don Quixote for a change.

    And happy returns to General Washington! Our families have been friends for many years, of course, but I think when this particular man is in the room, I shall do my best to remain out of sight and simply observe. He is all kindness and goodness, of course--hence why it is remarkable that he has also achieved such greatness.

    Now, might one enjoy a slice of that delicious-looking pie so early in the morn? 'Tis a special occasion, after all, and I would love a slice with my morning coffee.

    Sending you many greetings from Endover Plantation outside Williamsburg!

    ~ Lark Benton

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    1. My dear Lark, so very good to see you here. We have some sweet clotted cream to go with that cherry pie. I am afraid I had to see the apothecary this morning, about my rheumatism. I traveled out in your direction, Williamsburg, though not so far as Endover. And here you arrived at the party before I did!

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  2. Congratulations on your new book, Rta...It looks like a wonderful read.... We celebrated our honeymoon almost 40 years ago (this July) at Williamsburg. What a fantastic place. We stayed at the beautiful Willaimsburg Inn and went to the Parish Church, where many of our leaders went to worship years before; loved dining at the unique taverans inside the proper area....and I recall all those neat shops, etc. I still have some pewter pieces we bought on our trip, and a glass vase that was made on the grounds as well as a hand stamped envelope I mailed to myself. The re-inactments and so many tours were wonderful, and I do hope we can go back again. I rcall going to Carter's Plantation and have some old photos of that and a huge Oak tree where my hubby stood for a photo.... I know your book will be wonderful, can't wait to read it.And that pie makes me want to go out to Publix and get one!!!
    Blessings, Diane

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    1. Welcome, Diana! I should introduce myself to those who do not know me. I am Martha Custis Washington. And I am delighted to have you here to celebrate with us today! Would you care for ham biscuits - we are nigh onto our luncheon hour.

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  3. As a stranger in these parts, I am heartily grateful for your generous invitation. How delightful to find so pleasant a company in these colonies. With you kind indulgence, I will try to visit often.

    Congratulations to Rita on the book launch of Scarlet Dawn.

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    1. Judith, settle yourself by the fire, dear. We have a bit of a chill today in Virginia. Snow even, this morning! Thank you so kindly for your comments!

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    2. Thank you for coming to our party, Judith!

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    3. JUDITH, you are the winner of the nice big bag of Am Rev. soldiers. Check your email! Congratulations! George would certainly approve!

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  4. To Lark:
    I am so happy you have come to tea. Everyone should know you had quite the adventure in Annapolis. I wish you could have met Eliza Bloome Morgan, visited her at River Run along the Potomac. You would have become fast friends, I have no doubt.

    To Diane:
    The last time I visited Williamsburg was when my grown sons were little. I wonder if the colonial leaders would have liked the wave pool at the water park. Your honeymoon must have been very romantic.

    And to Judith: Welcome to the party!

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    1. May I bring you tea or would you prefer coffee? My dear friend Abigail Adams seems to have overslept this morning, but I expect her up shortly to co-hostess our party!

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    2. I have had my cup of coffee for the morning, thank you. I'd love some teacakes though...

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  5. Rita, HUGE congrats on your beautiful book! Colonel McLinn and I will add it to our library here in Kentucky:) He likes to read to me by the fire. Quite romantic, I'm thinking. I promised I'd come in costume today and pose as Roxanna ~ so here I am, better late than never! We're always ready to celebrate dear George! Truth be told, I'm going to attend a tea this Wednesday at the replica of Mount Vernon here so am very excited! Not sure what they're serving - last time it was lavender lemonade and the like. Very tasty. Blessings on you and your writing and all else today!

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    1. Mistress McLinn, so good to see you here. Tea, coffee, or spicy hot chocolate for you? And if the stew is done I shall bring a cup of that for you with your ham biscuit.

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    2. LOL, Carrie;) I was just writing about ham and biscuits in Ballantyne book 2! Must be hungry... Tea and some cherry pye would do me very well, thank you. Am wondering what George and Martha's preferences are? I've heard tell she is partial to Queen's Cake...

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    3. Ham and biscuits, how delicious. But what I really like is biscuits with sausage gravy! It is a rare treat, though. If I had it for breakfast I'd be as wide as a barn door.

      Apple pie please.

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  6. Thank you for inviting me to this tea. 'Tis an honor to be seated with the great General Washington.
    Mrs. Washington did a wonderful job in preparing everything. The table looks lovely.
    Cherry pye? Sounds scrumptious! Do you have gunpowder tea?
    If you don't mind would one of you kindly tell what finger vases are?
    Thank you again for hosting and inviting me to you lovely tea. We shall have a grand time.

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  7. Oh What Fun! I just love Cherry pie, thank you Mrs. Washington for having me over. Happy Birthday President Washington, it is an honor to have tea with you, hope you won't be offended if I have ice in mine since us southern belles love our iced tea! :)

    Rita I had the pleasure of reading your lastest work and it was wonderful. Can't wait for the next one. :)

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    1. Let me have our servant girl take your wrap, Mistress Mathews! I fear we have no ice and on this chilly day I encourage hot tea with ginger and honey - to ward off any illness after your long journey from the Carolinas! Welcome, and the stew is ready!

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    2. Thank you, Teresa. I am glad you enjoyed it. Book 2, Beside Two Rivers, comes out this summer, and I have to point out it is a continuation of book 1, the heroine being Darcy. Book 3, Beyond the Valley will be out next February.

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  8. Welcome! Thank you so much! No gunpowder tea and I think it is a dangerous practice these young ladies have of using gunpowder to clean their teeth! I cannot help but think it would be much too hard on them. Finger vases hold flowers separately through divided receptacles resembling the human digits! I shall see if I can find a sketch of one!

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  9. Good Afternoon, ladies!

    'Twas so nice of you Martha to invite me to your dear George's party! I am a bit late as the tutoring of my children took so much time this morn. Thank you for putting us up though--you have a lovely home! And it is a pleasure since John is in Washington-- again! The cherry pie seems a delight as I've had little to eat yet due to such a busy morn!

    But mostly I am eying that wonderful book by Rita Gerlach and hope to begin reading it tonight!

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  10. I am Willa, and I have come at your kind asking. And I have on a decent Gown--so I say, but Anni, my good Friend, wrinkled her nose when she saw it. It is my best. What can I do? I am far too tall to borrow one of Anni's gowns. She it was who pinned my hair and reminded me I must wear a Cap in such Fine Company as this. Now I see this marvelous food and the Tea and I wish I had brought the children. It is doubtful they have ever tasted Cherry Pie. I have not since I was a girl, before The People took me and made me one of theirs. It was my favorite then.

    So were Books. I read them, though there be some would say it is a waste of time for a girl. Or a Woman. I say not so. And that is what compelled me to come among you and give my Congratulations to Mrs. Rita Gerlach for the launch of her New Book. I think it a fine thing that a woman should Read. How much Finer then that she should Write?

    I will go and eat Pie now.

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    1. I agree...about read and writing...and eating pie.
      What a wonderful combination. And Lori, I must point out to everyone that you are an exceptional author!

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  11. I must say my dad would love a piece of such luscious pie; it's his favorite. God bless our godly leaders of the past. May we be fortunate to have such leaders in the future.

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    1. Yes, I hope so as well, Lauralee. And all this talk of pie is making me crave it. I am on a low carb diet and this is excruciating!

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  12. Welcome, Willa! Have no worry over your dress; we all wear what we can in days like this. A new country--and many bills to pay. I hear we owe much to Spain....but we are here to enjoy this lovely party and not worry about such things. Though John, Dear man and Friend that he is-- has often inquired of me about such things. So I suppose I have the habit of discussing politics and the course of this country when I should talk of anything else!

    You will need to excuse my simple frock as well, for I'm so used to running the farm while my husband is away. I agree with you--
    I believe women should read and write, and what better opportunity to read than Mrs. Gerlach's "Before the Scarlet Dawn"? It is a Godsend as when I return home I will be looking forward to more of her stories.

    Here....here are chairs, so we may sit down. Do you prefer tea, coffee or chocolate? Tea is so dear, but I fear I'm so used to it....

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  13. Welcome Lauralee! So good to see you! Martha has gone to rest as she is feeling poorly at the moment. Our prayers go with her.

    So glad you could come and mayhap I can save another piece of that pie for your dear father. I doubt Martha would mind as she has such a giving and generous nature!

    She spoke a short while ago about the ice, though right now I prefer hot drinks--which I believe are good for the heart as cold constricts the humors. However, ice is much needed in the summer to stave off the complaint. Though we have had a fairly warm winter and we've been low on ice, even in Massachusetts! We have had to store food in the spring house as we once did.

    You have said rightly about our leaders, Lauralee--and the General is certainly one of them! I hope those in future generations never forget what was won for them.

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  14. Carrie, Rita, et al ... oh my, you Colonial ladies are so hospitable and fun, you may just entice me to abandon my 20th-century roots and write Colonial!! Walt Disney's Swamp Fox was my favorite show growing up and Boston my favorite place, so I just know I would love it!!

    RITA -- what a lovely cover and title! Congratulations on the launch of Before the Scarlet Dawn -- it looks WONDERFUL!!

    A piece of cherry pie (my favorite along with peach) with clotted cream would be lovely, but not too much lest I have to loosen my stays ... and peppermint tea if you have it, thank you.

    Carrie, I do hope the apothecary was able to daunt that awful rheumetism, my friend, and that you are able to thoroughly enjoy this lovely party.

    Goodness, a girl could get used to this!

    Hugs,
    Julie

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    1. Thank you, Julie. It is so nice of you to be here. You are such a talented author, and I still have your bookmark. It's one of my favorites. Just a little hint...I am ready to set sail into the Edwardian era. Although I am intrigued by Mrs. Washington's and the other ladies' gowns, I am in love with the dresses the ladies wear at Downton Abby.

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    2. Oooooh, that sounds good too!!! And I have yet to watch Downtown Abby, although everybody and their mother has told me to. I plan to do so, just haven't yet. :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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    3. JULIE, you are the winner of Pear Preserves from Shirley Plantation! CONGRATS! Thank you for joining us in our tea party and book launch!

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  15. How delighted we are to have been invited to such a lovely tea party, a birthday celebration at that for General Washington. Introductions? Yes. I am Honour Metcalf and this is my young sister, Temperance. We have recently removed to Boston from England, my father an American sympathizer. After an unfortunate attack at sea, it has sadly left only my sister and I and therefore I have taken up the occupation of a quilter to provide for our needs, including Tempe's schooling. What a bright girl she is, loves to read, but I fear she shall have to wait until she is a bit older to indulge in Before the Scarlet Dawn. Though I look forward to curling up with it myself! Congratulations to Mistress Gerlach on her success!

    Do pardon me, yes, Temperance, you may have some cherry pye. Such a precocious one she is!

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    1. Such an enjoyable posting, Carla! Pass the pye, if there is any left, please. I'm giving into temptation.

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  16. Oh I must join the fun even if I participate out of time. I'm writing from the modern age of 1922, but wish I had one of those time machines and could go backwards to partake of that scrumptious cherry pie and meet your famous General Washington. If there is one thing I love, it's an adventure. And now that my dear friend, Abby, is happily married to her Geoff, I'm left to my own devices. Bravo to your United States of America for winning your independence so long ago. I don't think it will be much longer for India to do the same.

    I would have loved to have been alive during this exciting time in your history and to have met Eliza. I think we would have hit it off smashingly.

    Nursing Matron, Laine Harkness, India 1922, as per my memoirs written by Christine Lindsay in Captured by Moonlight.

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    1. What a beautiful title, Christine. 'Captured by Moonlight' sounds so romantic.

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  17. Rita...

    Have just purchased "Before the Scarlet Dawn" and looking forward to reading it. A lovely cover too, by the way. And Welcome Julie, Christine--Honour & Temperence!

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    1. Oh, thank you, Pat! You are so sweet. I hope you enjoy the read.

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  18. Allow me to introduce myself to those of you I haven't met yet. I am Catherine Littelfield Greene, the wife of General Nathanael Greene. But please do call me Caty as do all my friends!

    My congratulations to you, Rita, on the release of your wonderful new novel, Scarlet Dawn! I am sure it is every bit as engrossing as your previous one, Surrender the Wind, and 'tis one I must needs add to my library as well. It's fine to have such an accomplished author in our midst!

    I do apologize for being so tardy, but my eldest boy, George Washington and his little sister Martha--named in honor of our dearest friends, of course--got into a scrape that required most of the day to correct. However, I am pleased to say that all has been set aright and such mischief is not likely to happen ever again!

    Whilst I am here, I might indulge in small slice of that lovely cherry pye. Alas, Nathanael and I gave up tea after our famous Tea Party, so I will settle for a cup of coffee to warm me on this chilly day. You are so dear to entertain us in your usual gracious style, Lady Washington! Nathanael was unable to come because of the press of his duties and sends his profuse apologies. He promises to attend on you later today if that is convenient.

    Today I am wearing same gown I wore only a few days ago at General Knox's party celebrating our alliance with France. I've been told I look most fetching in it, and I could not resist appearing in it again! This heavy rose brocade with its square-cut neck and antique lace is my very favorite, not only for style, but also for comfort in this bitter weather.

    We have had such delightful soirees during our winter encampments, have we not? Oh, I do hope the gentlemen will all join us this evening so we may put together another ball! Do you remember, General Washington, how you and I danced for three hours straight at General Knox's party without once sitting down? What a pretty little frisk that was! I look forward to many more before the next campaign begins!

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    1. Caty, how lovely to make your acquaintance. A dear friend, Susan Ford Craft, is a distant cousin of your husband's. You may know of her. Many of the Fords settled in Due West, South Carolina.
      Fanny Bassett Washington

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    2. So good to have Mrs. Greene with us.
      And it is equally good to have Joan joining in.

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  19. Dear ladies, thank you for your kind invitation to such an extravagant party! And oh.. the guests are so agreeable and kind and so nicely attired! I must say I had the privilege of reading Ms. Gerlach's book, Before the Scarlet Dawn, last year and was captivated from the very first page. Rita has such a wonderful literary style that reminds me of classical music!

    I, too, am writing to you from 1812 Charleston. My name is Miss Adalia Winston and though I wasn't born in this fair country, I've become quite fond of it, along with a particularly handsome plantation owner's son, Morgan. Sigh. Tis rather unfortunate that I am so far outside his station and status, but I have discovered that in America, such things are not as important as elsewhere. In fact, I've just come from a conversation with George Washington on that very topic! What a wise and humble man!

    I do believe I will have some of that divine cherry pie now if there is any left.

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    1. Greetings, Marylu and Miss Winston! With all this talk of cherry pie my steamed vegetables for dinner seem blah-say.

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    2. I know! I'm on a diet.. and just looking at that picture made my mouth water. :-)

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  20. What a bright and favoured day. As manager of Mt. Vernon my husband, Augustine, set out before dawn to supervise reparations on the stables. After my two boys became occupied with their nurse, and my husband returned, he and I were able to sit and converse a while when Aunt Martha delighted us with her plans for this lovely tea.

    I do hope that cousin Nelly Custis will favor us with a song on the harpsichord. She has a lovely touch.

    And I have longed for the opportunity to make the acquaintance of the author of the novel I completed yesterday, Before the Scarlet Dawn. Mrs. Gerlach has my deepest admiration for a thought-provoking literary accomplishment whose cover is a work of art in itself.
    Fanny Bassett Washington

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    1. Welcome, Fanny dear! Thank you for coming. Nelly is about to sing while dinner is set out. Come into the dining room.

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    2. Dear Susan,
      Thank you for reading Before the Scarlet Dawn and your kind comments. You're going to love book 2, Beside Two Rivers. It is a continuation of book 1 and Darcy's story. The cover is on my website and I think it is prettier than the first.

      And Fanny, how I would love to drive down to Mt. Vernon and see those stables!

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  21. George is ready for his dinner. Please come in and be seated! The first course is a chicken broth with rice and herbs. Living here in Virginia we also have a salat! Our greens have lasted through the winter. ABIGAIL, if you would take your spot at the other end of the table we can get ourselves and our guests settled. George prefers the middle, as is his democratic way!

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  22. Thank you Martha!

    Everything looks and smells delicious! I cannot believe that I have room after two pieces of pye--but we shall see, for I believe the chicken broth will also be warm and healthful for us on this chilly day. 'Tis so good to see everyone gathered together to celebrate George's birthday and to enjoy the writings of Mrs. Gerlach. Thank you both for recommending her to us and I'm sure her work will gain many admirers.

    The lace edging on the linens is lovely, Martha. Where did you have them made up?

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  23. Those were passed down through the family, Mistress Adams. Did you know George's family once lived in Yorktown?

    Time for that wonderful roast chicken to be served and the potatoes with gravy and Sally Lunn bread with sweet butter.

    Mistress Gerlach hath made many hearts merry with her new release!

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  24. Aunt Martha, this chicken broth and rice was most excellent. I would beg the receipt. Ladies, my dear husband hasn't been well, and has refused all food offered. Our son, Fayette, named after the Marquis, you know, shares the same malady. I feel I could tempt them both with this warm, tasty broth.

    Fanny

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    1. Thank you dear. That is cook's specialty.

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  25. Looks like the party is well underway! Congrats Ms. Gerlach, on the release of your book :)
    Lovely party, I love the pictures and I was especially fascinated by that interestingly shaped vase! Beautiful in a really different way!

    Thanks for hosting, Carrie :)

    crazi.swans at gmail dot com

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    1. Welcome, Faith, and let me settle you in one of these Queen Anne chairs by the table. Some of the guests don't care for more dessert after all that cherry pie!

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    2. Faye, thank you for coming and for your comment. It is an interesting vase. I have seen them before, but never knew what they were called. Carrie is so good at presenting interesting things to us.

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  26. Fanny, I have indeed heard of my husband's cousin Susan and the Fords of South Carolina, and I hope one day to make their acquaintance. I'm so glad to see you here too, Adalia, and everyone else who has joined us. What a pleasant company in which to spend the day! Nelly's singing is such a delight, Martha, and her playing too. Please compliment her again from all of us. And the dinner couldn't have been more delectable. Now if only my dear Nathanael could get away to join us, the evening would be perfect indeed.

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  27. Patsy and Jackie are now tucked into bed. Cook outdid herself this evening and is beaming from the compliments that George has passed on to her. Perhaps Nathanael might accompany you on your next visit.

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  28. (No conversation, too busy eating hoping uncouth table manners will not offend) (Congrats on the book release!)

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    1. Well, my dear, no one would point out any uncouth table manners as that would be rude. I certainly did not observe any, rest assured! Welcome!

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  29. Love cherry pie with ice cream on top, so good. What an unusual vase, I have never seen one like it. Can't wait to read your book Rita. I love historical stories about our great America. I have your book on my wish list.

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

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    1. I felt so deprived with everyone eating cherry pie, since I have cut carbs and sugar from my diet. I'm off to the grocer's today, and have to muster my willpower to stay away from the baker's section at Wigman's!

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  30. That finger vase looks cool and unique! Congrats on the release of your latest book, Rita! :-)

    ~Cecelia Dowdy~
    www.ceceliadowdy.blogspot.com

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    1. The one I have to give away is from Berkeley Plantation in Charles City, VA, Cecelia. Interesting how designs change. The Victorians had these little pins that would hold a fresh bloom with a little water, like a teeny vase pin!

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  31. Thank you, Cecelia. Congratulations to you as well.

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  32. I purposed to arrive late, hoping for some simple roasted fowl as I'm trying to avoid the pie. I don't suppose any of the 18th century ladies ever heard of such a silly idea as dieting and counting calories. They just sewed larger clothes!

    Congratulations Rita on your new release and the wonderful review in USA Today!
    It's a pleasure to see everyone here today!

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    1. One can certainly unlace a tad after the sumptuous meal we had last night. Roasted fowl is lovely. A pleasure to have you come by for Rita's book launch!

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    2. DEBRA, you are the WINNER of the finger vase from Berkeley Plantation! Congrats! Blessings!

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  33. Congratulations on your book release, Rita! So glad you have another one out. I enjoyed your debut novel very much.

    Speaking of George Washington, I would have loved to meet the real man. I have this image of who I think he was, but I can't help but wonder...

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