Monday, 30 April 2012

The Month of April

Somehow the whole of my month of April has disappeared... It could almost be summed up with rain, chocolate, friends, family and gardening.

It started waking up in dear friend's newly decorated spare bedroom having had a lovely Saturday supper together and the knowledge that the Easter holidays had commenced.
Deciding I have another favourite place to add to London Mooching, Seven Dials. A glorious walk in the sunshine along these streets, gazing at the brooch I'm coveting and exploring a new shop that I'd read lots about.
Meeting a dear friend for a long lunch at Rocket.
Godson, his siblings and mother coming for a lovely relaxed lunch. Good to see children enjoying our garden, eating the creme egg cakes I'd baked.
Our curtains for the dining room have been delivered and are lovely. Phew we made the right choice.
A supper of bellinis, friendship and laughter with dear colleagues at the National Portrait Gallery Restaurant.
A cold and most pleasant day watching The Boat Race at Brother Warmth's flat in Mortlake. Then drinks in the Hare and Hounds, surely a pub Hugh Grant should frequent.
An Easter Sunday at our home. It was lovely to have every one around the table. Delicious lamb, cake, Simnel Cake and chocolate, Easter Egg hunt Easter Egg races in the garden, in between the rain.  Warmth received his life sized Easter bunny and was very happy and it was very delicious.
Meeting a friend for supper at Vinoteca. Hearing about her plans.
Warmth had the week off work which was lovely. Lots of pottering in the garden, seeing how new plants have sprouted shoots, bulbs planted are coming through, planting sweet pea seeds and hoping they haven't been washed away in the rain.
Tate Britain to see Picasso and Modern British Art then to Tate Modern to see Damien Hirst.
Lemon and Jar
A mooch to Greenwich Auctions then to see the most delcious film - Delicacy, a walk over Greenwich and Blackheath. A wonderful rainbow and drinks at The Railway.
A Friday night at The Royal Academy London Original Print Fair.
To The Rocket to celebrate a friend's 40th birthday lunch.
In amongst all the rain the first glimpse of peonies at Liberty's. Surely summer is on its way?
Ma and Pa Warmth to supper. A lovely evening and even better to have left over food to munch on the next day.
Baked Creme Egg Cakes, Nigella's Easter Chocolate Nest, Sunday evening baking restarted biscuits, banana bread, Bakewell Tart baked for the first time.
Books read - oh very slow with The Finkler Question.

The month ended with a beautiful, sunny spring day.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Glorious spring days

A Hosepipe ban has been called and the heavens have opened with more than just April Showers. Maybe the weather will read this passage and bring back glorious sunny days, with rain during the night.

'However, in these glorious spring days the sense of life was too pleasant to be much clouded... The graceful wild clematis festooned the shrubbery along the creeks with great wreaths of magnificent white bloom, which loaded every breeze with perfume; the pretty bright green senna shrubs along the river-banks were decked in blossoms that rivalled the deep blue of the sky in brilliance;... The cry of the leather-heads was heard in the orchard as the cherry season approached. Oh it was good to be alive!' Miles Franklin My Brilliant Career

How has your spring been?

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

The world of imagination

Last week I went to Bethnal Green Museum of Childhood and saw these two great quotes.

"The world of reality has its limits; the world of imagination is boundless." 
Jean Jacques Rousseau

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation." 


Friday, 20 April 2012

Carry her over the water

We haven't had a gratuitous wedding post recently. How about a spring Friday wedding? Let's take the day off work and celebrate amongst dear friends and family.

Carry Her Over the water
Carry her over the water,
And set her down under the tree,
Where the culvers white all day and all night,
And the winds from every quarter
Sing agreeably, agreeably, agreeably of love.

Put a gold ring on her finger,
And press her close to your heart,
While the fish in the lake their snapshots take,
And the frog, that sanguine singer,
Sing agreeably, agreeably of love.

The streets shall all flock to your marriage,
The houses turn round to look,
The table and chairs say suitable prayers,
And the horses drawing your carriage
Sing agreeably, agreeably of love.
W.H. Auden

The bride

We'll be offered these drinks.


Hmm now what shall I wear?

How about this dress with a swish of red lips and the glimmer of a red sole?
What will you wear?

Monday, 16 April 2012

Lean upon the dusk

Back to work this week. No more morning pottering in the garden.

'The windows of the drawing-room opened on to a balcony overlooking the garden. At the far end, against the wall, there was a tall, slender pear tree in fullest, richest bloom; it stood perfect, as though becalmed against the jade-green sky... Down below in the garden beds, the red and yellow tulips, heavy with flowers, seemed to lean upon the dusk." Katherine Mansfield Bliss in Something childish and very natural

Hoping for glorious spring evenings enjoying dusk in our garden.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Hoary with blossom

I'm still in the wonder of blossom.

'As she stood up to go she looked out at the stretch of garden behind the cottage. The newly turned earth was studded with green plants, against the spring sky a plum tree stood up hoary with blossom. Irene's mother looked at the tree and her blue eyes took on a deeper colour.
'It's a wonder, isn't it?' she said. 'When I go up the garden to shake it, so as the blossom shall set, I could fair worship it.' Elizabeth Cambridge Hostages to fortune
Living in a new area I'm continuously being surprised by new trees giving out their beautiful blossoms. I keep looking at what's happening to the trees after the blossom.  I could fair worship blossom.

Friday, 6 April 2012


The noise is stilled. I come out on the stage.
Leaning against the door-post
I try to guess from the distant echo
What is to happen in my lifetime.

The darkness of night is aimed at me
Along the sights of a thousand opera-glasses.
Abba. Father, if it be possible,
Let this cup pass from me.

I love your stubborn purpose,
I consent to play my part,
But now a different drama is being acted;
For this once let me be.

Yet the order of the acts is planned
And the end of the way inescapable.
I am alone; all drowns in the Pharisees' hypocrisy.
To live your life is not as simple as to cross a field*.
Boris Pasternak, Dr Zhivago

*The last line is a Russian proverb.

If one can have a favourite Good Friday passage this would be it.

Abba. Father, if it be possible,
Let this cup pass from me.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Epiphanies of spun-sugar

"I remember them from my childhood; the Paris chocolateries with their baskets of foil-wrapped eggs, shelves of rabbits and hens, bells, marzipan fruits and marron glaces, amourettes and filigree nests filled with petits fours and caramels and a thousand and one epiphanies of spun-sugar magic-carpet rides more suited to an Arabian harem than the solemnities of the Passion." Joanne Harris Chocolat
Our house is awash with chocolate, somehow we're resisting. Today I'm baking these for my godson and his siblings. Not quite as elegant as this passage but just as delicious. 
What chocolate will you be eating?

Monday, 2 April 2012

Sweet bud of loveliness

"A sweet bud of loveliness," Amanda Foreman Georgiana Duchess of Devonshire

This quote seems appropriate as it's the first day of the Easter holidays. The garden is full of buds, so far thankfully the plants from last year haven't died, there are a few buds of loveliness popping out to say hello. Just waiting with anticipation for blossom on our tree.

How is your garden?