A chic and elegant Valentine's celebration

February 8, 2015

I won this beautiful Limoges teacup from Martha at Martha's Favorites. She subtitles her blog "Confessions of a Serial Collector." Those of us who love teacups can relate! She always shows each of her teacups from her extraordinary collection with a matching brooch. So guess what I got with my teacup?

The teacup and brooch came with pretty paper napkins, a teabag rest, and some Earl Grey tea.

Thank you, dear Martha, for the wonderful gifts. Your beautiful, vintage Limoges will be loved and treasured. 


Because I am still trying to lose weight embracing a new chic and elegant lifestyle over here at The Beautiful Matters, I am having my hazelnut coffee, not with food for the body, but food for the romantic soul.

(See how nice that sounds? It's all a mind game.)

Maybe Horatio Nelson, the famous English admiral, knew the secret. As he writes to Lady Emma Hamilton on January 29, 1800, " I can neither eat nor sleep for thinking of you my dearest love, I never touch even pudding."

This book, Love Letters: An Anthology of Passion by Michelle Lovric, has some lovely pictures and contains facsimiles of real love letters from famous people such as John Keats and Elizabeth Barrett Browning tucked into envelopes in the book.


My husband and I have decided we will forego the high-priced, calorie-laden restaurant meal on Valentine's Day, and will bypass the box of chocolate we normally indulge in. (A recent trip to CVS had me wishing I had blinders on -- chocolate, chocolate everywhere!)

Instead, I will make salmon with fennel; we will have Pellegrino with lime in crystal wine glasses, and dine by candlelight. Our present to each other will be a lovely couples' massage that I will schedule for sometime next week.

See, it's not about deprivation; it's about luxury!


Even Caramel, the official blog cat, is having to rethink her relationship with food. On a recent trip to the vet, she was quite embarrassed to discover she has put on 2 pounds, weighing in now at 13-plus pounds. She was also told she needs to get some exercise, just like me.

Caramel takes refuge in my daughter's arms as she receives the bad news. She is not a fan of going to the vet.
In good news, I have now lost 11 pounds! 

I am also drinking copious amounts of tea and trying to stay warm. After a brief foray into upper 30-degree weather, temperatures are once again plummeting. Brrrr!

I'm joining Tea Time Tuesday for Sandi's special Valentine's Day Tea. Come join us for the fun!


  1. Congratulations on your weight loss and change to a healthier lifestyle! Love your new brooch and teacup as well. Happy Valentine's Day, Deborah!

  2. You are doing really good Deborah. That is wonderful.. Your new tea cup is beautiful. my husband and I plan to do the same. We rather enjoy a lovely meal at home.

    Couples massage sounds great. Happy Valentine's to you both.


  3. What a pretty cup from Martha. Happy Valentine's day.

  4. Dearest Deborah,
    You are quite a sport and yes, you are so right, you also can let your mind feast on romantic readings with a cup of coffee. Although, dark chocolate is no sin as it contains far less sugar and is so healthy for us.
    Hugs and blessings,

  5. Beautiful tea cup! The book looks really interesting too.

    I am doing the Trim Healthy Mama eating plan. I am thankful for learning a new way to eat that really helps me to lose weight.

    You are doing so well! Congratulations to you!


  6. Such a beautiful cup and saucer and the brooch was stunning, a real delight. I am also cooking salmon on Valentines day, our gift to each other a treat whilst we are on holiday in Florida yet to be decided. Congratulations on your weight loss, you are doing so well. Have a great week.

  7. What a pretty teacup! It goes so well with the old love letters. I don't think I have ever received a box of chocolates from my husband for Valentine's. And we never go out like we did when we were dating. He complains of the crowds at the restaurants ... sigh. I guess he thinks Valentine's is a young man's game ;)

  8. Congratulations! The tea cup is lovely, but that dragonfly pin is my favorite! It's gorgeous! Congratulations also on your weight loss. Good for you! Lovely photos in today's post.

  9. Congrats on your beautiful tea cup win! It sounds like you will have a nice Valentine's Day with your husband. We too try to avoid going out to dinner on Valentine's Day and sometimes go out to lunch instead to a nice restaurant! Wishing you a nice day and week. Stay warm.

  10. Hi Deborah...So happy you won Martha's giveaway. She is such a peach, don't you think? Congratulations on the 11 pound loss. That is HUGE! Have a great day. We are inundated with snow here and thousands more flakes are flying down through the sky as I speak. Susan

  11. Such a lovely tea cup...very pleasant way to drink copious amounts of tea. Congrats on the weight loss. Your efforts are being rewarded. (Not sure about that Valentine's meal, though. =D )

  12. Caramel; love your kitty's name! Congratulations on your weight loss, Deborah! I enjoyed your post so very much. I would enjoy reading that book, I know, and what a romantic quote! Your Limoges teacup and brooch are just beautiful and the extra goodies are very thoughtful of Martha. We have acquired over a hundred centimeters of snow on the ground in the past two weeks and I am longing for springtime. Thank you for joining me for tea and have a beautiful day.


  13. Your Limoges teacup from Martha is lovely. Lucky girl! Love your valentine vignettes and quotes. Lovely art work, too. Good for you for getting into shape -- easier said than done! Happy Tea Day!

  14. Hi Deborah,
    Congratulations on Martha's win. The Limoges is gorgeous! I won a teacup from Martha last year and love it! Martha is such a gem! Your kitty is so sweet too . I continue to search for healthy snacks but it is a daily battle for me because I am a Cookie Monster. Lol. You should be proud of yourself for doing so well with your diet. Happy Valentine's Day! Karen

  15. Hello sweet lady! Congratulations on losing 11 pounds! What an accomplishment, my dear :)

    Your Valentine's tea was simply beautiful! Thank you for sharing your loveliness with us. Hugs!

  16. Isn't your teacup a beauty from Martha? She's such a sweetheart, isn't she? She makes me smile!
    Congratulations on your 11 pound weight loss! You're doing so well, my friend!
    My friend, Bea, and I had a massage on the beach, in Mexico last week, along with a facial. Ahhhh pure bliss!

  17. Hello dear friend! I am so glad you loved your cup. As you know, Limoges is one of my all time favorite cups. I am so proud of your weight loss as well. Have a wonderful Valentine's Day, you desire it! Hugs, Martha

  18. Congratulations on winning the gorgeous Limoges teacup and the weight loss. Keep up the good work!

  19. Limoges roses teacups are so sweet and delicate aren't they. The brooch is beautiful. Have a wonderful week.

  20. I remember reading that you won Martha's giveaway and I'm not surprised to see a piece of her signature bling included, a nice package to receive!
    Congrats on your weight loss Deborah and a couples massage sounds romantic.

  21. Hello, I think your gift was very pretty! And I think the plans you have made for Valentines Day sound wonderful! So glad you are seeing those results on the weight loss! Keep it up as soon it will be spring again and you can be outside again. Darn ground hog (smile)
    Hugs, Roxy

  22. It is so nice that your family can join together on being healthy. Happy Valentine's Day!

  23. Lucky lady to receive one of Martha's teacups!!

  24. Hi Deborah, Congrats on your win from Martha. What a gorgeous teacup and gifts to go with it. I love the brooch too and how pretty is looks on your sweater.
    Congrats too on the weight loss. That is really an accomplishment and you are doing so great.
    Yes, Valentine's Day can be celebrated without all the chocolate.
    Your sweet kitty is so cute. Have a great week and blessings be yours.
    Hugs, CM

  25. You're doing so great! And eating good healthy foods makes you feel stronger too! I'm so proud of you. And this post is very beautiful! Enjoy your week my friend! Sweet hugs, Diane

  26. Hi Deborah, what a sweet teacup and pin from Martha! Your plans for Valentine eve sounds perfect and also the message! We are getting another 4 or so inches of snow tonight, we already have plenty!
    Have a wonderful week!

  27. Same sort of weather here. Lovely teacup and gifts and that book and your photos of it are just lovely.

    However you now have me wanting chocolate too, lol!! I think I'll be having a cup of hot chocolate very soon now!

  28. What a lovely gift to receive - the teacup is so beautiful! Love the book and your photos today are so special. Congratulations on losing 11 lbs and for avoiding all the chocolate this time of year. Your Valentine's meal sounds wonderful. xo Karen

  29. What sweet gifts, Deborah; enjoy! Your Valentine's Day dinner sounds lovely. Kudos on your success so far!!

    Happy Valentine's Day!


  30. Your tea cup is lovely Deborah!
    I love your upcoming Valentines Day celebration...dining at home is wonderful too and those massages sound perfect.
    And tea sounds so inviting...Im starting to drink more of it as opposed to hot chocolate.
    Hope you have a wonderful week Deborah!

    All my heart,
    Deborah xo

  31. Way to go on seeing such great results on the scales! Your new teacup is so sweet. And well I remember feeling like Horatio, even though it was many many years ago!

    I love your plans for celebrating Valentine's Day, and I especially love that you are thinking "luxury", not "deprivation." That's a recipe for success, I bet!

  32. Beautiful limoges teacup and saucer from Martha's Favorites. Your idea to dine at home is so wonderful for you have control of your menu. Keep up the great work!


  33. Hi Deborah! What lovely gifts! Congrats on your success so far! It's hard this time of year what with the cold and being in the house more (and the chocolate), so it is doubly impressive :). Your Valentine's plans sound lovely. Happy Valentine's Day!

  34. Dear Deborah... what a beautiful post. Lots of wonderful news too. What lovely gifts. You are to be commended on the great strides you've made in your weight and new health path. I'm so pleased for you.

    I wish you a beautiful day.... and thank you for making mine that way too.


  35. Your dinner sounds marvelous. I agree 110% with making special effort at home rather than going out. - Says the woman who'd live on cereal, take away, and diner food if she had her way.mints. We are making a special dessert as our Valentine treat.

  36. We did a very similar stay-at-home Valentine's Day celebration and it was absolutely luxurious. So happy to hear that others are like minded and staying in.

    Your Caramel is very similar to my Carmella but has more light patches.

  37. You're so cheerful and upbeat about the non-diet :) It IS a mind game, for sure! Your Valentine's celebration sounds just perfect. And I love the sound of that book -- Nelson is a hoot with his pudding abstinence!!!

  38. Congrats on losing 11 pounds - that's GREAT!

    Last year I was on a basically no carb diet and lost 21 pounds, then stopped and put it all back on. Shame shame shame I am too fat! But I think your weight will stay off because you are doing it carefully, slowly and heathily - an entire lifestyle change!

    Your teacup is beautiful, Martha is such a wonderful lady, is she not?



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