"A board, propped on two blocks of wood, stood in the middle of the walk, covered with a little plaid shawl much the worse for wear, and on it a miniature tea service was set forth with great elegance. To be sure, the tea-pot had lost its spout, the cream-jug its handle, the sugar-bowl its cover, and the cups and plates were all more or less cracked or nicked; but polite persons would not take notice of these trifling deficiencies, and none but polite persons were invited to this party.
On either side of the porch was a seat, and here a somewhat remarkable sight would have been revealed to any inquisitive eye peering through the aforesaid keyhole. Upon the left-hand seat lay seven dolls, upon the right-hand seat lay six; and so varied were the expressions of their countenances, owing to fractures, dirt, age, and other afflictions, that one would very naturally have thought this a doll's hospital, and these the patients waiting for their tea.
This, however, would have been a sad mistake; for if the wind had lifted the coverings, it would have disclosed the fact that all were in full dress, and merely reposing before the feast should begin."
With the arrival of this invitation, the girls ran about the house in disarray with excitement and glee.
One found undies, one found none. One shoe on, one shoe off.
One found a pretty shawl, another found pearls.
What excitement rings throughout the house as these ladies prepare for a party!