"With Pomp, Power & Glory the world beckons vainly, In chase of such vanities why should I roam?While Peace & Content bless my little thatched cottage,And warm my own hearth with the Treasures of Home."*Beatrix Potter

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Spending May Day with Shakespeare


A few weeks ago we had a rare night away & visited Shakespeare Country.
We loved it so much that we travelled back to Warwickshire Two weeks later as Mary Arden's Farm was celebrating May Day.
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We had just finished learning about The Tudor's so this was a perfect way to end the topic & inspire the children to know & learn more about William Shakespeare.
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Mary Arden's Farm has so much charm & history,
 you feel like you are walking back in time.
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Carding wool.
These two little girls love to get involved in crafts.
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The rear of Palmers Farmhouse.
There is always something cooking on the hearth in this farmhouse.
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All the Tudor costumes were wonderful.
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Cooking Tudor Pottage.
I brought home a wonderful little book with some lovely Tudor recipes in which we have had several times since our trip.
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A basket of Tudor supplies.
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The farmhouse kitchen.
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I loved all the woodenware.
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Goose Herding.
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Sweet Spring lambs at the farm.
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Kitty made a friend.
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Anne Hathaway's Cottage & gardens.
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Upstairs in one of the bedrooms.
It was wonderful seeing all the old pieces of oak furniture.
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The beautiful scullery in Anne Hathaway's cottage.
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Tulip Time in the cottage garden.
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The twins loved this garden with all the paths, nooks and crannies.
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The girls outside Shakespeare's Birthplace in Stratford Upon Avon.
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One of the downstairs rooms.
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This house is Halls Croft which was the home of Shakespeare's daughter Susanna,
 she was married to a doctor.
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The kitchen in Halls Croft.
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We loved all these old houses in Stratford & the surrounding villages.
The staff were wonderful & we learnt so much from them.
Our tickets last for a year so we will go back many times.
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May Day in England.
We love to study old traditions so after learning about May Day in England many years ago we once again travelled to Stratford upon Avon to Mary Arden's Farm.
There was so much to do there from making flower garlands to bringing in the May Pole.
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Dancing round the Tudor May Pole.


Cooking a May Day meal in Palmer's Farmhouse at Mary Arden's Farm.
The twins made some beautiful flower wreaths for their hair at the farm.
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There are so many activities you can do at the farm.
The girl's also did Tudor weaving & braiding & they made Gingerbread.
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Smelling the herbs in the farmhouse garden.
The girls are planning their own herb garden.
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Hand weaved basket outside the farmhouse.
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The Tudor May Day meal.
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During the meal they told you all about Tudor manners and customs.
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Mary & Danny joined in a Shakespeare play at his birthplace in the afternoon.
Mary has been truly inspired by Shakespeare & came home with a pile of books.
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There are five museums all run by The Shakespeare Trust.
They were all wonderful with so much to see & do.
I hope you all had a lovely May Day & are enjoying the last days of Spring in your part of the world.
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Thank you dear readers for all your lovely comments.
A few followers have asked for recipes on Instagram which I will post on my next blog post. I just had so many photos of the Shakespeare homes.
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Fondly Michelle
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Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Springtime & Celebration's

Spring has come to England & not more so than in the country
 with the different greens emerging all around us.
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Our garden is filled with birdsong & the delicate Chaffinch's
 are gently building their nest's of moss, old sheep's wool
 & wood. They weave all this softness to once again
 build their homes to raise their young.
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The Wild Cherry Tree's in the old graveyard next door will soon be in bloom & then once again making a sweet smelling carpet, these blossom's bring such joy to Kitty as she is at her happiest playing amongst the flower's.
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The field's are full of lamb's with their mother's grazing on the green grass. 
How I love England at this time of year.


Springtime bring's many celebration's for our family with our oldest Grand Daughter Charlotte's first birthday & the twin's turning eight year's old.


A couple of week's ago we had our first day of lovely sunshine 
so we packed up our lunch after our morning lesson's
& ate up on the Lincolnshire Wolds. This spot is just 1/2 mile
from us.
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Our beautiful Grand Daughter Charlotte turned one at the end of March,
how this past year has flown.
She bring's us so much joy & is such a sweet child.
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For the twin's eigth birthday we spent the day before 
 at Harrogate in North Yorkshire.
We all loved looking at the beautiful display's in the famous Betty's Tearoom
& came home with a few treat's.
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We had a rare meal out to celebrate in a lovely Yorkshire pub,
I wish I had captured Mary's face when her Ice Cream was brought to the table.
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Apricot Fruit Cake & the Twin's Birthday Cake.
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Apricot Fruit Cake
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We make this recipe often & with out icing freezes well.
Put all ingredient's into a bowl & beat well.
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3 eggs
4 ozs of margarine
6 ozs of self raising flour
3 ozs of light brown sugar
5 ozs of sultanas or raisins
3 ozs of glace cherries
4 ozs of dried apricots chopped
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Pour into a greased & lined loaf tin & bake for just over an hour in a moderate oven.
Once cooled ice with icing sugar mixed with water & decorate with chopped apricot's.
I have adapted this from a Mary Berry recipe.
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Preparing the plates ready for their birthday tea.
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Blowing out their candles.
Eight year's has flown & now these little girl's are turning into young ladies.
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I found this lovely vintage fabric the other day & the twin's
found another Ladybird book for their collection.
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Cauliflower & Broccoli Cheese.
A family favourite.
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Dene, Ellie & Baby Tilly came to visit us last week.
She is such a good baby & we were blessed with lot's of cuddle's.
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The daffodil's are coming to an end now but that mean's new thing's will now be
in bloom, the Magnolia is just beginning to flower. 
This is a spot at the back of our garden where we over look
a field that is full of sheep & lamb's at the moment.
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I made Gingerbread Muffin's for an on the road breakfast.
They were so soft the next day.
I hope you enjoy the recipe, we loved them.
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Fork together 
10 ozs of plain flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon of soda
1 teaspoon of dried ginger
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
in a large bowl.
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Mix in another bowl
1 egg
3 ozs of sugar
3 flozs of oil
3 flozs of black treacle
2 tablespoons of honey
6 flozs of water
Blend well
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Pour wet ingredient's in to the dry & stir.
Spoon into 12 muffin cases & bake for about 20 minutes.
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I found this recipe in an old book on muffins by Susan Reimer.
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Last week we returned to The Black Country Living Museum 
& had a beautiful sunny day.
There is always so much for the children to learn at this type of museum.
We decided to go because we had just finished our Geography Topic on Canal's 
& this museum is on a canal.
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I am always drawn to the kitchen's, Kitty was drawn to the shelf of book's.
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So much to look at there.
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Kitty's favourite corner.
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A sweet tin picture in one of the cottage's bedroom.
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Preserves in the scullery.
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We were not disappointed with the canal & the boat's.
The girl's were able to step inside the living quarter's of a boat.
There was not a lot of room in there & to think large families lived on these boat's.
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Stepping on to a boat.
The boat man was born on a Canal Boat & has lived all his life on them.
He told us so much & brought all our learning together.
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Stepping into a small street house at the museum.
This felt very much like home.
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Another Victorian Cast Iron Range.
These were used for so much,
cooking, heating, hot water, ironing & toasting to name a few.
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The Grocer's Shop in the small town.
The shelves look so much prettier than they do now.
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I loved the butter dish.
How I would love to still be able to shop like this.
I use an old basket for shopping, even though we still use the butcher's & greengrocer's the shop's just are not the same as they use to be.
Although we are very lucky to have two beautiful market town's near us with weekly market's.
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The Toll House's table.
This is such a pretty cottage with a beautiful cottage garden.
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Sleeping pig's at another cottage.
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& lastly the 1920's house.
I could have started cooking straight away as this room did feel like home.
The oven is the same age as the electric one we have in our cottage.
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Thank you dear reader's for your kind comment's.
I love reading each & everyone of them.
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I hope everyone is having a beautiful Springtime
& that the snow has finally gone in Canada & North America
so you can enjoy the new Spring flower's.
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Fondly Michelle
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