September 30, 2022


TikTok is right about the beachy grandma who loves tea parties and antique china.

Summer Garden Tea Party.

Antique china is common in some coastal families.

Bignai/Getty Images


Enough of the TikTok videos we recommend serving tea and using “casual china”. One video specifically recommends a lavender tea recipewhich may be because some types of lavender they grow naturally on the coast.

My family picks mint from the garden to make ‘sun tea’. Chop the mint, place it in a jug of water with black tea bags and leave it in the sun all day.

I found it too coffee cake and lemon loaf recipes on TikTok that bear a striking resemblance to the cakes my seaside grandmothers served. I have spent many happy mornings sitting on the patio drinking sun tea, eating roasts and listening to the lapping of the waves.

Nicoletta states Serving these coastal recipes in China, which is current in my community, where coastal families often have special serving dishes, usually passed down through the family.

In our house, we can’t wash most of the dishes in the dishwasher because they are very delicate and at least 100 years old. China, like most objects in our home, usually has a history: gifted by a distant royal family, saved from the communists during the Russian revolution, used during the civil war, etc.

All of these antiques can make beach vacations with small children a little challenging, as I’m constantly worried that my kids will break something. One of their favorite items is a little chair that belonged to my great-great-great-grandfather, so it’s from the 1800s. So far, we’ve managed to keep it intact.



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