Monday, 29 October 2012

Larder love

We have always looked with longing at those old fashioned walk in larders you see in old houses (usually on the television).  Our house is quite old, possibly 150 years old, but it didn't have a larder.  Being the types who love preserving and home made food, we were starting to overwhelm our boring modern kitchen cupboards.  Then we had an idea of converting what was a dead wall space in a small room off the kitchen that housed the washing machine.  The space is always slightly cool and dark, and is away from the steamy confines of the kitchen.  So after a lot of sanding and painting, and making of shelves by Mr C, we finally started filling the shelves at the weekend and voila, we have a very old fashioned looking larder taking shape!

So together with the store cupboard items, our home made preserves, and our lovely 1930s glass light shade, we added some of our cornishware, and yesterday I added the Christmas pudding I've just made onto the top shelf.  Bliss!

Friday, 12 October 2012

The trees are starting to glow

Autumn is starting properly now, the leaves on the trees are starting to turn all kinds of colours and dropping to the ground with the conkers and acorns.  On a beautiful autumn day like today the leaves look like they are glowing against the blue sky.

I don't think any photographs can do this time of year justice, let alone my quick snaps but I can't stop taking pictures when the light is this beautiful.  Autumn feels like nature's last hurrah, a burst of brilliance and beauty before the majority of trees and plants die down for winter.

I love walking through the leaves in Autumn, and am often the only person in the park picking up the conkers as the children walk past wondering what on earth I am doing.

I have a small collection of conkers on my desk at work - they remind me of things that make me very happy, being on a walk on an autumn day in the fresh air, being in our garden and listening to the birds chattering in the trees.

The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry's cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town.
The maple wears a gayer scarf,
The field a scarlet gown.
Lest I should be old-fashioned,
I'll put a trinket on.

Emily Dickinson

Sunday, 7 October 2012

All is safely gathered in...

This weekend was our Harvest Festival, the church was beautifully festooned with flowers, tins and packets of food.  We decided to contribute by bringing some of our own harvest - vegetables, flowers and home made jam - as a more traditional display:

Harvest is from the Old English word hærfest, meaning "autumn" and traditionally celebrates the successful gathering in of all the crops from the farms.  People would celebrate with a meal called a harvest supper with feasting and dancing.   The modern British tradition of celebrating Harvest Festival in churches began in 1843, when the Reverend Robert Hawker invited parishioners to a special thanksgiving service at his church at Morwenstow in Cornwall.  We did both of these, with a harvest hop on the Saturday (with much terrible dancing) and the festival on the sunday.

Come, ye thankful people, come, raise the song of harvest home;
All is safely gathered in, ere the winter storms begin.