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One might well say that mankind is divisible into two great classes: hosts and guests. Max Beerbohm

“Laverne & Shirley”, the affectionate names given to the two ladies who run the kitchen for our Ladies’ Morning Break Ministry, are grand hostesses. They serve faithfully in the kitchen preparing refreshments and washing dishes, while still gracefully gliding around the room to make each woman attending feel special. In addition to their weekly service, they also spend months planning our final gatherings to make them extraordinary. They bake special treats, set a beautiful table, and send each woman home with a small handcrafted gift. They are incredible!


Last May, Laverne & Shirley set a Spring-themed table for us, complete with tea cups and petite four. I snapped this photo of Laverne’s tea cup because the unique pattern really took my eye, and then I set out to research it.

lynne tea_ed


This “Honeycomb and Flower “tea cup was made by Thomas Forester & Sons. Their pottery business began in Longton High Street around 1877, and n 1879, they commenced production under the name, The Phoenix Works. In 1883, Thomas’ sons, Herbert & Victor Forester changed the name to Thomas Forester & Sons.

They expanded their business over the next 10 years, employing over 700 people and making them one of the largest employers in the Staffordshire area by the end of Queen Victoria’s reign (1901). The company ceased production during 1959, due to limited production during World War II and the introduction of the Clean Air Act (1956), which ended the use of bottle ovens or kilns.

In 1912, a printed china mark and the name “Phoenix China” were first used. Based on this china mark, this tea cup was produced between 1925 and 1959.

…Sipping ‘tea’ isn’t cute. But loving, supporting, giving, being grateful and perpetuating light, is. – Grace Gealey

Special thanks to Laverne for letting me share her treasure today!

Happy Monday!