Thursday, 8 April 2021

April and our very own Poets Corner

Oh, to be in England Now that April's there, And whoever wakes in England Sees, some morning, unaware, That the lowest boughs and the brushwood sheaf Round the elm-tree bole are in tiny leaf, While the chaffinch sings on the orchard bough In England-now! From 'Home Thoughts, From Abroad' by Robert Browning. And in May onwards when you can come and stay with us you too can enjoy the sounds and sights that inspired Robert Browning to pen such words. We are opening up a Poets'Corner for you to pen your own words. If you would like to leave your words and thoughts behind when you depart we will happily frame them and hang them in Our "Poets Corner"for others to enjoy. And you can enjoy reading what other people have written too .

Wednesday, 7 April 2021

6th April - Flitting Day

I was talking to my Dad and he was reminding that the 6th April was knowing as Flitting Day. For those who havent heard of it here is the explanation. As a year-end and quarter day that conveniently did not fall within or between the seasons for ploughing and harvesting, Lady Day was a traditional day on which year-long contracts between landowners and tenant farmers would begin and end in England and nearby lands (although there were regional variations). Farmers' time of "entry" into new farms and onto new fields was often this day. As a result, farming families who were changing farms would travel from the old farm to the new one on Lady Day. My Grandparents moved from the Creiff. A farm 2 miles away or a miles through the fields and woods from here, which is now where Stanbrook Abbey stands. They would have moved with horses and cart similar
to the one in the photo. My dad is a fountain of stories and really I know, I should bottle them up. My Grandparents came to live at the farm in 1902 even though they had farmed the land for a lot longer. My Dad sadly said "They moved in on 6th April1902 and they carried him out him [meaning his Dad] was carried out on the 6th April 1957. I was only 10 months old so that was 64 year ago...crikey I am getting old. Grandad had died on the 2nd. I have wondered many times how old a child is when they start remembering their childhood. Believe me or not I distinctly remember him as I recall him holding on to my leg when my dad was changing me on the kitchen table as I was quite a "wriggly bottom" /Maybe this is why I cant stop still for long now. He was 80 and a tall slight man who always wore a jacket. He was quite formal and had a moustache which was quite spikey. He seemed to be quite amused by me as he had had 3 sons the youngest being my father. My Granny had died when my dad was 18 and the typical farmers wife making butter and cheese. I have made a lot of butter too in my days and icecream - 4pints of cream and 16 eggs that was when I used to serve evening meals and the visitors had ice cream with their apple pies. When we had milking cows we had a good supply of milk but sadly I never got round to making cheese. Although we still have the old butter churns and pats on the shelf in the diary. It is lovely to hear that people are embracing the old traditionas and no more so when there was a programme on television lately as cheese makers in North Yorkshire. It filmed Andy and Cathy who supports these cheesemakers and sell their cheese at Courtyard Dairy near Settle . i have met these folk and they are very knowlegdeable and even sell cheese on line so maybe if you are looking to treat someone or even yourself this is the place to go.

Thursday, 1 April 2021

Happy Easter

It has been a busy March. Getting ready for lockdown lifting and welcoming guests again. And moving furniture about.Glad I have had a strong man to carry things about to do most of this. But not one to be stuck and wanting it done now rather than later, I sometimes did as a carthorse would do when I was small when backing a cart... put my behind on it and pushed. .I havent mastered carrying a fridge yet but had help. So now can revel that when you come to stay with us we can offer you a room with its fridge,microwave, toaster and enough bits and bobs to make snacks and small meals. During lockdown we have realised it is not altogether about going out to eat, but to be able to get a take away, some nice deli food and enjoy local bits and bobs suffices. I know when we have had holidays abroad in the past how much I enjoy shopping and eating local produce. Live like the locals so to say. So true is the saying a change is as good as a rest. And if you want a delivery just say, you order what you want and I will stack it inthe fridge for you ready for your arrival. I have also been busy getting plants growing ready to put in the garden as it warms up . It has been over 20 degrees here for the last 3 days but as it probably wont last for too long I have commondered my Dads passage way to grown my seedlings on as I have run out of windowledges here. Also it helps he has far more green fingers than me and they stand a better chance of surviving . My first planting was rhubarb seeds,they have grown really well.They say when you become a gardener you dont say rhubarb for example you would say Champagne or Victoria. Potatoes are not potatoes, but Maris Piper, Charlottes and Kind Edwards. I have even bought a white peach tree and it is treated much as a baby in a pram, take it out on a nice day, bring it in as the day gets colder just incase there is a frost. A white peach but with lovely pink blossom I am tempted
to buy another one. Tom has been busy digging up some of our most robust bushes as I want to create a framework of greenery around a very sparse looking covered over sitting areawhich looks more like a bus shelter at the moment. I have some hops which are very delicate at the moment. Again they have gone to my Dads for that extra bit of care and it didnt help that Dorothy - the young cat, like to sleep in the same plant pot as them here. It is nice to see that there is some grass now for the deer to eat, as they had a very lean time over winter. They are regualr visitors although we can't guarentee them coming every day. They do come more late afternoons onwards and come within 20 to 30 foot of the house. Just dont eat my magnolia bush. It will be nice to see the grandchildren over the Easter holidays as they are around just before they go back to school. No doubt it will be hectic as the sugar rush of chocolate will be rocketing. There is something about Easter eggs that taste different to a bar of chocolate. It is ok this on line shopping lark, but to me nothing beats going into the shop and seeing and sme ling what is on offer. Oh and just incase you have forgotten, I prefer milk chocolate -thank you Well I must crack on ,the birds are beginning to sing and the sun is just getting up .Jack is in for his breakfast as he has been out with dogs and ready for something to eat and it isnt 7am yet. I dont know about you, but lockdown I hardly known what day of the week it is, and clocks well my body clock is all out of sync. I look back on the year and think where has it gone. Nicholas is busy on the farm with lambing and hatching as eggs are coming by post for him to put in his incubators. And he has just hatched out a pair of alligators Happy Easter, and sorry no alligators just Aprils Fools Day