Monday, 25 June 2018

Raspberry Scones


This is one of my favourite recipes.  I’ve been baking raspberry scones on a regular basis and, as I’m the only person who likes raspberries, I get to eat them all!  (I do make sultana scones as well, for Mr Candytuft.)


They freeze well, so I can thaw them in the oven and enjoy a warm raspberry scone whenever I fancy.  Anyone for a cup of tea?

Friday, 15 June 2018

Spring Drive


Our recent day out took us to Cavendish and then back along the shore from Green Gables.  The view above is taken just down the road from our stop in New London, at the birthplace of Lucy Maud Montgomery.


The weather was perfect for taking photos, as the sky was clear enough to see into the distance.



We stopped further along the road to admire the tranquility of the light reflecting the trees in the water.


We found a secret place which is likely missed by the thousands of tourists who flock to Green Gables in the summer. Mr Candytuft is  always keen to go down mystery tracks and see where we end up.  This is what we found at the end of one - it is called the Swimming Rock.


There is a little sand beach - likely a bit bigger when the tide is out.  The red sandstone rock is typical of Prince Edward Island.


The land was purchased by the Sterling Women’s Institute in 1963 and is now a picnic place, with benches and a little shelter.


Continuing on our journey, we stopped to take a photo of St Thomas’s Anglican Church.


The gravestones closest to the road appeared to be fishermen’s, as they had boats carved on them.  The fishing industry is big in Prince Edward Island and not without danger.  Two fishermen tragically died only a week ago.


One of the most painted panoramas of Prince Edward Island is of the tiny community of French River with its painted buildings, overlooking New London Bay.

 
This is the view looking to the right.  It wasn’t possible to get a good shot of the whole bay, as there was a tour bus of Japanese tourists all clicking away with their cameras.  The Japanese are huge fans of Anne of Green Gables. 

 

 

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Spring at Green Gables

My last visit to Green Gables was at the end of December, when it was snow-covered and peaceful.  I enjoyed the solitude and the beauty of the the scenery.  


This time, it was busy with tourists, though nowhere near as crowded as it will be in the height of summer.  Entrance to the farmyard is through the barn.  I took this photo from beside the house (and without my glasses), so I didn't see the Mennonite couple entering: I would never intentionally take a photograph of them, but I hope that my readers understand that this was the only photo of this view, which I wanted to share with you.  (I took care to ensure that they did not appear in any of the internal photographs of the house, although they were walking in front of me.)  The house is approached from the rear (this is now the exit). 

 
This tree was just starting to come into blossom.  We have had a very poor spring and the trees and plants are at least a month behind.


Coming round the front of the house to the front door.  There were a few tourists on the lawn and a school group enjoying lunch under one of the trees.


Entering through the front hall, we turned left into the living room.  The rooms have been restored in keeping with the Green Gables story.


The tour continues through the living room and into the dining room. 


The rooms were quite dark, even with some of the lamps lit (and it was sunny outdoors), but I imagine that it would have been even darker when it was inhabited as a family farm, with dark decor and poor lighting.  

 

Matthew’s room was on the ground floor of Green Gables and I recall from the story that he rarely went upstairs.


Other rooms on the ground floor include the scullery, larder and kitchen. 

 
 

 The old-fashioned Waterloo stove was used for cooking and heating and had pride of place in the kitchen.


Upstairs is the room that everyone want to see - yes, it is Anne’s room and it looks like she just stepped out of it.  I could just imagine her running up the stairs from the garden with her red pigtails flying behind her.


The other bedrooms on the upper floor include a guest bedroom.


As well as Marilla’s bedroom.


And, of course, her sewing room.


 As I was descending, I paused at the window to look at the view across the garden to the farmyard beyond.


It was interesting to see the interior of the house and I was fortunate that it wasn’t too crowded during my visit, as one of the guides told me that it is absolutely packed during the summer.  She said that, between April and October 2017, they had 250,000 visitors!

This post is dedicated to my dear friend, Tracy, my kindred spirit.
 

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Lucy Maud Montgomery


Last week, we had a beautifully sunny, warm day and we decided to make the most of it and go out.  Our spring has been mostly cold and wet, so it was a joy to finally see blue skies.  I had the choice of where we were going, so I decided on a trip to see Green Gables, before it is overrun with tourists.
 

On our way, we stopped in the pretty village of New London, at the birthplace of the author, Lucy Maud Montgomery.  She was born in this tiny house on 30th November 1874.  
 
 
Opposite the house is this pretty century home, with a porch and a couple of tempting rocking chairs. I imagine that the owners sit out there and see the world go by - quite literally.  The Anne of Green Gables  series of novels is hugely popular, especially in Japan.  Bus tours of Japanese tourists descend on this part of Prince Edward Island every summer.
 
 
There is a plaque at the front door noting that this is Lucy Maud Montgomery’s birthplace and a blue plaque stating that it is a Canadian Heritage Place.  
 
 
This the front door to the house, which is white clapboard with green trim.  There is also a little white picket fence in front of the house.  

 
 
Entering the house, the front hall is lined with books and souvenirs relating to Lucy Maud.  
 

To the left of the front door, we toured the lower floor of the house with its cosy little rooms.  I didn’t get any photographs because it was quite dark indoors and also rather cramped because of the number of tourists (mostly hanging around taking photos!).
 

We managed to get ahead of the pack and see the rooms upstairs.  I tried to get a photo of the quilt on the bed, but I couldn’t get the detail, as the room was viewed from the hall.  The quilt was made in 1916 by the New London Women’s Institute, to raise money for the war effort: each person who contributed 10 cents had their name embroidered on the quilt (notice the sign at the door, which is also in Japanese).
 
 
The tiny rooms under the eaves of the house looked quite cosy and inviting, but I couldn’t imagine living here and surviving a Canadian winter without any form of heat in the bedrooms.


The main bedroom is furnished with a rocking cradle and a rag rug on the floor.

 

I noticed this mat at the entrance to one of the rooms.  It is Green Gables, which would later be the inspiration for the Anne stories.

 

I did manage to get a photo of Lucy Maud Montgomery, which was hanging on the wall of her birthplace.  I wonder what she would have thought, had she known that tourists from all over the world would make the pilgrimage to visit the places which are associated with her stories.


 I will write about my visit to Green Gables in another post.

Monday, 14 May 2018

In The Frame


Two weeks ago, I started a new counted cross stitch.  This one is from the Craft Collection and is called Christmas Robin.  I’ve had this kit for more years than I care to mention and it has been on my ‘to do’ list of craft projects, so it is good to finally have it in the frame.

I was attracted to this design because it features my favourite bird and it also features a church, which reminds me of a one in a village outside Harrogate, where I used to live.

I’ve enjoyed working on this in the evening and it is lovely to have a size which is easier to handle than the huge seaside cross stitch, which I finished in the summer of 2016.  Now that the robin is in place, the design is starting to take shape.

Sunday, 13 May 2018

A Creative Journey


I have embarked on a 12 week journey of self-discovery, following The Artist’s Way.  I bought this book a few weeks ago, but then procrastinated until I started to feel guilty about not getting down to work.  I feel that there is some untapped creativity within me and I want to explore it.  This book is my guide and, together with my new red notebook, I am setting out to find ways to discover and recover my creative self.

Having said that, I am already creating in different ways.  I still enjoy my knitting and have recently started a new counted cross stitch pattern.  I’ve also been writing, but I don’t feel ready to share this project with you just yet.  Maybe after I have completed my journey of self-discovery, I will be ready to tell you about it.

Thursday, 10 May 2018

Thoughts of Summer


I’m slow at sharing these little beach huts, which I started knitting last summer.  The knitting part was finished in good time, but the construction took a little longer.  Mr Candytuft kindly built the framework (from cardboard) and I eventually found time to sew them together.


In looking at these photos, I just noticed that I forgot to stitch the buttons on for the door handles.


There is still no sign of summer here - spring is only just getting underway.  The grass is now green, but the trees remain leafless.


It may be a few weeks before it is warm enough for a trip to the beach.  These little beach huts are filled with pearl barley for weight, as I intend to use them as door-stops, once it is warm enough to have the windows wide open.