04/06/2015 § 6 Comments
I can’t believe I haven’t joined the National Trust before. I guess there are many and varied reasons given the difficulties we’ve faced over the past few years but I’m savouring the delights of wandering through beautiful grounds and grand country homes – it’s real therapy. Here are a few of my snaps from last weekend’s visit to Hinton Ampner, here in Hampshire …
I popped in to visit, as I was passing that way en route home from yet another village fete …
I’d enjoyed a scone with cream & jam and a lovely cup of tea, did some people watching – always fascinating, scoured the bric-a-brac stall with some success and came away with so many plants and a heavy manger to plant them in! Have I already said “I love summer fetes” … well, I truly do. This weekend I have something of a dilemma – there are 2 fetes at the same time, in different villages, some miles apart but quite close to Winchester. I think I’ll have to toss a coin to decide which one to visit. AND … there’s another one on Sunday – it must be THE weekend for summer fetes!
Yesterday, with my NT pass still burning a hole in my pocket, I met up with a friend and we visited Mottisfont. This is a grand house with a long and detailed history that is documented in many displays from the 12th Century as a Priory, through private ownership and family home, to country weekend retreat during the 1930’s. We toured the rooms, including the Whistler room then tiptoed upstairs to the maids’ quarters where to my delight, I found a patchwork quilt!
The roses in the walled gardens have taken a bit of a battering in recent high winds, but they’re still breathtaking – quite literally …
Such a lovely place to visit. We walked right around the grounds, up to the fisherman’s hut and back around the meadow by the shepherd’s hut. Next time I’ll take some photos in the stable block, which is one of my favourite parts of the whole estate.
It’s been a beautiful day here and I’ve just returned from a long walk around the farm, with the collies. There’s a pink sky, promising sunshine tomorrow so I’d best finish doing a bit of quilting so that I can enjoy the afternoon sunshine tomorrow, whilst stitching around the binding edges. Simple pleasures!
Have fun …
30/05/2015 § 2 Comments
Where are we now?
Late Spring? Early Summer?
I’ll let you decide, as we take a wander around the garden …
The foxgloves’ trumpet petals are speckled and loud with the hum of bees, in the afternoon sunshine. There’s a new alpine garden planted, next to the baker’s tray table and zinc planter where the succulents are happily spreading their cobwebby cups. I’ve discovered solar lanterns and the whole patio glows with soft lights once dusk descents at about 9 pm each evening.
My grandfather’s lily is in full bloom, with lots more shooting buds ready to unfurl. I wrote about it here, last year. The landscape gardener who came way back in January said it would bloom early as it’s not drowned out by overgrown shrubs – he was right! What a difference in the garden, from those bleak winter days.
I treated myself, at the village fete a couple of weeks ago, to a crystal rose bowl – it’s heavy and beautifully cut. Today I snipped the first Dublin Bay blooms and the first orange rose from the climber by the patio and added a few more bits from the garden to make a posy. I enjoyed the heavenly scent whilst I ate my dinner on the patio in the cool, still evening then brought it indoors to enjoy some more!
I took this photo by accident, as I was switching on my little camera, this afternoon. I rather like it! I joined the National Trust yesterday, and have already visited 2 local properties. Yesterday, a friend and I dodged the showers in the Rose Garden at Mottisfont and today … well, I had a solitary and rather wonderful wander which I’ll share with you next time. It’s Saturday and there was a summer fete involved too!
What has your weekend brought? Some sunshine, I hope …
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