"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

Thursday 11 September 2014

The Comfort's of Home

What a lovely few days we have had, the sun has been shining & all in our little corner of the world is happy & contented.
This week has been full of so many beautiful moment's.
I do love being at home just doing simple pleasures like baking, gardening, knitting & just living our simple life.
 A traditional corn dolly made at harvest time for a sweet heart.
Glimpses of home.
We live in a mud & stud cottage built before 1741, it is a timber framed building with thatched roof & tiles.
This is our hall with original brick flooring.
Some of the timbers are older than the cottage, I never stop looking at the beauty of these old beams.

A corner of the kitchen.
The brick floors run through the cottage.
They were covered up when we bought the cottage, what a surprise they were.
Old cast iron range in the hall.
This is one of Bobby's places to lay down, sunshine in the morning & a soft rug.

Old timber leading in to the kitchen.
Some are still stuffed with Georgian & Victorian newspaper's, I haven't the heart to remove them or the old paint.

Old lime paint.
With our solid fuel cooker it is a great area for drying flowers & herbs.

I found a beautiful old cookbook in an antique book shop the other day & baked Fat Rascal's from it. Each recipe gives the history of the food & it said Fat Rascal's were handed out in Yorkshire Inns.
They were enjoyed for Sunday tea.
A beautiful old book by Louisa May Alcott that I found in the same book shop as the cookery book.
I love old books & love to read them.
I found the Georgian china teacup & saucer in our small market too.
Our town is full of antique shop's, the cup cost an amazing 50p & the cup & saucer £1, how could I not bring them home to add to my other one's.
Hanging out the laundry this beautiful morning I spotted this butterfly enjoying the sun.
It stayed so still for me & was still there when I got the wash in.
This is our scullery with old sink.
We have a very simple kitchen & do most things by hand.
The little window would have been an outside wall many years ago. In the Victorian period they put a little pantry extension on, I am so pleased they did.
The glass & lead in the window is so old, all hand blown & one piece has been signed with initial's & our village's name.
We found this beautiful old baker's cabinet a long time ago.
At some point someone brought it over the sea from America.
The large square timber in the wall is one end of the huge beam that is above in the inglenook fireplace in the kitchen.
Apple butter being made.
This is a recipe a dear friend Suze from Maine gave me a few years back & I do it every year with our own apples. It sits all day in the bottom oven cooking so slowly, the smell is wonderful.
Plenty of jars for the pantry shelves.
Pumpkin & pear butter's are next on our list.

The pears in the garden are nearly ready for the pear butter.
I am trying to think of another way of preserving them, maybe a spiced jam.
Dried fruit soaking overnight for tea bread. This time I decided to add some dried apple pieces.

We are out for a picnic at the weekend to a 1940's event at a National Trust house.
Tea bread is always a favourite to take out with us.
The Sweet Pea's just keep blooming, such a heavenly smell.
I think next year I will make a large twig frame for them.
Victoria Sponge Cake for tea. I still have so much of last's year jam so it is a good way of using it up.
The hens are laying so many eggs at the moment, they must know I love to bake.

This will not last long, it will all go at tea.
I have some of my Grandmother's china & glass plates, one was my Great Grandmother's, we use them all the time & her cake knife.
Treasured memories off her come to my mind when we use them & even though the twins never knew her they talk about her as if she has just popped round for tea.
Grandma was a very talented lady, in her early life she was a milliner to the royal family. She loved to sew clothes & later in life painted.
I am really enjoying doing this 1940's pattern, I have to finish the neck & then just the sleeves & ties to do. I found some lovely fabric at a local market last week so plan to make a historical apron with it. I have a lovely pattern that I have not used yet, I was waiting for the right fabric. I might have enough left to make the twins matching aprons for Christmas but don't tell.

As part of home school the girls made pizza for tea.
We have had an abundance of tomatoes this year in the green house, everyone loves these little ones & perfect for pizza.
Green tomatoe chutney will be made in October, we have so many green tomatoes.

They are so happy when we all sit round the table & tell them how yummy their pizza's were.

Have a blessed weekend.

Monday 8 September 2014

A Beautiful Day's Outing ~ Final Part

After the Pit village we made our way back up the road to Home Farm.
The Farm has a beautiful farm house, stables, barns, two cottages & vegetable garden.
Home Farm is set in the 1940's, it shows how the countryside was in wartime.
The vegetable garden at the farm. I think the fence will be on our to do list in the spring, hopefully it will help keep the little rabbits out of our vegetables.
                                                      Mary day dreaming

  There is a beautiful duck pond at the farm, we would love some ducks.

There are two old labourer's cottages on the farm, this one is called Orchard Cottage & is set out to have evacuee's living there. The twins loved the Ludo game.

At the back of Orchard Cottage is an Anderston shelter, Sidney was straight in there. Not the girls though, Kitty especially does not like anything dirty unless it is planting flowers.

Inside Garden Cottage with it beautiful cast iron range, this cottage is set out as the Land Girls would have been billeted here.

             The front of Home Farm, to the far side is the farm house & to the near is the stables.

Danny & the twins walking in to the old stables, there were two shire horses in there.

A vintage tractor pulling out to work on the fields. The following weekend was a ploughing celebration so they were getting ready for it.

The Pantry at Home Farm.

       Such a beautiful large room, how I could fill those shelves. They have some lovely old hooks for hanging meat & drying things. We have some of those in our cottage, I do wonder what was hang on them many years ago.

The farmhouse kitchen, they have a lovely large old kitchen range always so warm & welcoming. The settle is original to the house, such a lovely shade of old green.

Bobby meeting a very large pig.

The orchard at Home Farm laden with apples.
The farm has many dry stone walls, a favourite of mine.
Yorkshire, County Durham & The Lakes are full of them.

                      The last stop on our day out was to the Georgian Landscape,
               which includes Pockerley Old Hall, old house, gardens & farmstead. 
                                          The first record of a settlement at Pockerley
                                                            dates back to 1183,                  
                                  there is such a feel of history in this magical place.
                             This is by far my favourite place in the living museum.
                                        The Manor House dates back to the late 1700's
                                                      & is built from local sand stone.

We found this back lane that we hadn't walked before,
I love our English countryside.

Mary caught them up in the end.
& then she came back to Mum.

We entered Pockerley Old Hall set in the 1820's through the back kitchen or scullery.
This room was used for heating water, washing clothes & dishes.
Peat is used on the fire in the scullery.
This room does remind me of home.

                                       The Pantry, I love the simple look in here.

Preserves made in the kitchen.

Such a beautiful Georgian dresser with pewter & Spode lining the shelves. I love the set of copper pans over the doorway.

             This room is so beautiful, there is always something baking, today it was cheese thins.
This kitchen has a very early cast iron range, it also has an older brick bread oven in a beehive shape. We have a brick beehive bread oven in our inglenook fireplace at home, that was one of the first things that I loved when we viewed the cottage which we now call home.

An early court cupboard.

                                           The bureau in the parlour full of old papers.

                     One of the things we love about Beamish is the fact that you can touch & feel everything, they really get you feeling the history. Not many museums would let you play games.

Coming out from the main door of Pockerley Old Hall to the formal garden. Below the terrace beyond is the vegetable garden.

Front of the old hall.

Next to the hall is the medieval strong house.
The roof timbers in here date back to the 1440's.
The children love the old spinning wheel & have a go at carding.
The items in this house are so beautiful.

The fireplace in the medieval strong house, it has a beautiful chimney crane & there is always something bubbling in the pot.
Above the fireplace is a rack called a flake, this is used for drying oatcakes.

                                            Making tallow candles & rush lights.

The vegetable garden, the gardens in the Georgian landscape are set out as gardens would have been around the 1820's.
Simple Bee Skep.

                                                       Beautiful nasturtium's.

On our way through the woods back home.
It was a perfect day, one I will treasure for a long time.

Enjoy your day