Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Cambric, or Tea-Kettle Tea

Do you have lots of odds & ends in your blog Drafts?
I cleared most of mine out a while ago, but this morning, having gotten up earlier than usual, I went through the remainders and found a painting I'd saved this summer after I finally read some Betsy–Tacy books. 

I always thought I should read the B&T books because their author, Maud Hart Lovelace, grew up south of here, in Mankato, Minnesota, and as an adult moved to Minneapolis. She wrote about her childhood in the B-T books for her daughter.
Delos and Maud Hart Lovelace with daughter Merion, ca. 1931, via MN Historical Society

It's surprising how captivating it can be to read about two little girls whose adventures in the first book, titled Betsy-Tacy, include sitting on a bench with a sandwich. They also visit a new neighbor, who serves them cambric teaMy mother used to make cambric tea, but she called it tea-kettle tea: it's tea, milk, and sugar... without the tea, so it's pale white, like cambric fabric (in the painting I'd saved > > > but no info about it...). 
My mother also added a little zest of orange peel. 

I loved the B-T books when the girls are little and the books are illustrated by Lois Lensky (I don't care for the new American Girl-style illustrations). When Betsy goes to high school and the illustrator changes, I lost interest.


Zhoen said...

Had to research this. Surely, I shelved some, the author is familiar, even the titles, but never read them. Don't recall them from my library as a kid.

Holds placed now, though. Thanks.

Lady Chardonnay said...

Whoo-hoo, more Betsy-Tacy readers! And yes, a lot of people make the division you made, preferring either "the childhood books" illustrated by Lenski or "the high school books" illustrated by Neville. I completely get why Betsy's boy-craziness turns you off in the H.S. books; may I make a plea for you to try "Emily of Deep Valley" (many cite this as their favorite; it is quite different in tone from the other books) and "Betsy and the Great World" when Betsy leaves her Deep Valley Crowd and tours Europe before the Great War? I think you might like both.

Did you know that there's a Betsy-Tacy songbook? I bet some of your residents would know these old songs.

Fresca said...

That B-T songbook looks great---alas, a bit outside our budget... I'll keep an eye open.

OK, on your recommendation, I will look up EDV and the Great World, since I did love the earlier books so much.