Lavender Sachets in the Shop

The shop is freshly stocked with linen and antique linen lavender sachets!  I repurposed some beautiful, monogrammed antique towels to make them.  So, if your monogram is a "B", "H", or "W", you're in luck, because that's just what's in the shop!  Each is delightfully fragrant!  Great for gifts, travel, or repelling moths amongst your fine woolens. Click here to go to my Etsy shop to read all about them!

The Church shall never perish!
Her dear Lord to defend,
To guide, sustain, and cherish,
Is with her to the end:
Though there be those who hate her,
And false sons in her pale,
Against both foe or traitor
She ever shall prevail.

Though with a scornful wonder
Men see her sore oppressed,
By schisms rent asunder,
By heresies distressed:
Yet saints their watch are keeping,
Their cry goes up, “How long?”
And soon the night of weeping
Shall be the morn of song!

’Mid toil and tribulation,
And tumult of her war,
She waits the consummation
Of peace forevermore;
Till, with the vision glorious,
Her longing eyes are blest,
And the great Church victorious
Shall be the Church at rest.

- The Church's One Foundation, Samuel J. Stone (1866)

Fool-Proof Pork Tenderloin

I found this fabulous recipe for Asian Pork Tenderloin with Ginger Glaze on Pinterest, followed the link to here, followed the directions, and wow!  Is this ever simple and fabulous!  Best of all, it's a crockpot recipe, so it can cook for hours while you are otherwise occupied.  It finishes off to caramelize under the broiler.  Serve with remaining glaze poured over the top.  Couldn't be simpler!  Bon Appetit!

Fearless in the Kitchen

Colette is fearless in the kitchen.  Fearless that girl is!  This week she brought out her favorite baking cookbooks and spent a day pouring over them for fresh inspiration, marking all the new recipes she wanted to try for this year's farmers' market.

And yesterday?...this!  Homemade bagels!  Delicious!

Fearless, I say!

The Graduate

Today was Max's last day of school!  He is our last homeschool graduate, and we couldn't be prouder of him!  Early last summer, he got a part-time job.  In the fall, he was juggling his homeschool coursework, a co-op pre-calculus class, English 101 from a local community college, a business internship, AND his part-time job.  He was one busy guy!  But he has proven he can shoulder adult responsibilities well.  Week before last he bought his first car.  And next week he starts a full-time job.  One more year, and he wants to move on to his goal of doing maritime law enforcement with the U.S. Coast Guard.  Such a delight to see God blessing His hard work and plans!

Open for the Season

We are open for the season!  It's visiting least at our house, and our first guests of the season came last week.  My brother, sister-in-law, sweet niece, and irrepressible nephew were her for a four-day stay.  They were the first of a steady stream of people coming to our "B&B", as we say, between now and mid-October. We feel very blessed to have so many friends and family coming to stay.

The first day of their visit, my brother and Max hiked Mt. Washington.  Although it is right here in New Hampshire, it is home to some of the most severe weather on the planet.  Fortunately,they had fabulous weather...sunny, high temperatures, and visibility for 70 miles from the summit.  So proud of them to have reached the summit!

While they were hiking up, my sister-in-law, Colette, the kids and I hiked down.  Down into the Quechee Gorge in Vermont.  Here's a view looking down towards our destination, at the far end of this photo.

Down at the river's edge now.

Other highlights of our day included a visit to King Arthur Flour.  Baguettes in hand!

A stop at the Cabot Cheese Shop.  When he saw this photo, my nephew exclaimed, "I look just like a cow!"

And a delicious stop at Morano Gelato!  Yum!  One of my favorite places on the planet!

The next day was a simple day full of family time.

I suggested we play a card game, and my nephew said, "Card game?  I only know how to play blackjack and poker!"  Not surprisingly, he won.

There was cousin time with their second cousins.

We enjoyed some really delicious, light and smooth root beer that they brought with them, as they had already visited Colonial Williamsburg on their trip.

And there was some fun exploring happening too!

Precious times with family!  

Baby Shower Tea

A week ago, Colette and I hosted a baby shower tea for Felicity!  It was an intimate gathering of a few of her the evening...with dessert!  Photos are less than stellar (my apologies), because I was busy hostessing and enjoying myself, but I wanted to share just a few with you.

We set the table with an eclectic mix of china teacups, water goblets, napkins, and silverware.

We arranged each individual plate with the tiny desserts and had them ready and waiting in the refrigerator to serve once the guests arrived.  Each plate had: a Piourline cookie, a rabbit-shaped sugar cookie (from my grandmother's recipe), lemon mousse with blackberry and blueberries in phyllo cup, an enormous chocolate-dipped strawberry, and chocolate mousse garnished with raspberry and mint leaf.  Each person's chocolate mousse was piped into one of my antique crystal salt cellars and served with a teeny spoon.

Happy soon-to-be-mom-of-FOUR!

She had a friend visiting from out-of-state with her own daughters.  We set up a separate table in a corner of the dining room for the little girls, with their own tablecloth, cheery daffodil snipped from the front flowerbed, and teacups.

Everyone talked around the table for hours...sipping tea, admiring the cute baby gifts ( pictures of those), and enjoying having a really girly night with friends!


Mr. Porcupine

Meet Mr. Porcupine.  Isn't he adorable?  We think so!  This time of year, we get nearly daily visits from him.  He comes to feast on the newly green grass for a while.  Usually, he waits until cover of darkness for his foraging forays, but now he's getting quite bold.  Today, he was ravenously devouring grass at 4 o'clock in the afternoon, in broad daylight.  He's hoping I plant some cucumber seedlings soon, because he recalls those were most tasty a couple of years ago.  I'm hoping to keep my cucumber seedlings this year, as evidenced by the chicken wire waiting in the basement for planting time.  And we're definitely hoping to keep our sweet golden retriever far away from our visitor.

Preparing for a Baby Shower

We are having a baby shower for Felicity here tomorrow night!  It's an evening dessert tea, with just a few special ladies invited.  I'm hoping to make them all feel loved and pampered with pretty teacups, soft lighting, and lovely music softly playing in the background.  I bought some flowers for the centerpiece.  But then, I couldn't resist buying some more to set here and there...especially when the local store is having a bargain of a deal with two dozen small roses for $4.00!

I plan on us spending the whole party gathered round the dining room table.  The sideboard should be a good place to pile presents, and a little silver bucket full of roses seemed just the thing to add a touch of freshness.

Of Ancestors, and Picnics, and Graves

Last Saturday, Colette and I had a little excursion down into Massachusetts to do some ancestry searches.  We had a list of properties, houses, and graves to find, and only managed to accomplish some of our list, but we had a fabulous time!  

The most exciting find of the day was our visit to Cogswell's Grant.  John Cogswell was my 10th great-grandfather, and he was given a grant by the King of England to 300 acres of land in, what is now, Essex, Massachusetts.

He built a home on the property.  Over the years, it was added on to, until the original house was torn down. What remains now is the house built by his grandson (not in my blood line).  But the land, though diminished in size and no longer in the family, is still a working farm.

The older barn on the property, which I believe dates to 1728.

The house, c. 1732, is open for tours during the warmer months of the year.  But being quiet and having the place to ourselves, it provided a lovely spot for our picnic!

Springtime arrives, and each year I am just so eager to go on a picnic!  This year, I could hardly wait to get outside for one.  I've spent some time researching the history of picnics, and hope to share that with you someday soon.

- Menu -

Crackers and Quark
Sliced Strawberries & Tangerines
Croissant Sandwiches with Black Forest Ham, Lettuce, Sliced Brie,
and Sliced Strawberries (super yummy!)
Sparkling Cider

The front yard of the property is terraced into three levels, with the house and a large maple tree sitting at the top.  The yard, a little wider than the house is encompassed by an old, stone wall.  And at the bottom of the yard was a simply gorgeous patch of blue springtime flowers.  Ahhh...we felt positively transported to England!

It was all so pretty, it was difficult to leave.  But we had more exploring to do, so off we went to nearby Ipswich.  Here we studied hundreds of gravestones in one of their old graveyards, in an attempt to find the graves of about six different relations.

All of our searching resulted in just one find, but we were thrilled to find that!  John Tuttle was my 8th great-grandfather.  We laid flowers on his grave and left, determined to return another day and renew our search at another graveyard.

Sabbath Rest

Witch hazel blooming at Old Sturbridge Village.

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:
The old has gone, the new is here!"
- 2 Corinthians 5:17

George Washington Costume

I've been working on this costume for months, and at long last it is in the shop!  The George Washington Costume!  I studied historical portraits of General Washington and reproduced this to be a close approximation of his military uniform.  It's ready to ship!

Favorite Places and Details - Old Sturbridge Village

One of my favorite places in all of New England is Old Sturbridge Village.  And so, I thought I would share with you some images from two buildings there.

The first is the Freeman Farm.  I never miss a chance to visit the Freeman Farm every time I go, because it's so full of life!  Something is always happening there.  Animals in the barnyard.  Smoke curling from the chimney.  Food cooking in the kitchen.  This time, it was a bit startling to see the front part of the house "dyed" black (I was told it was dyed, not painted) because it was recently part of a movie shoot.

Good smells were coming from the kitchen...freshly baked apple pie aroma mingling with wood smoke.  Ahhhh.

Just off the kitchen is the dairy room, where milk and cheese are made.  The lighting in this room is always so luminous.  Everything's so simple and elemental, beautiful and useful.

And off the other side of the kitchen is the drying room, where herbs and fish are hung to dry.

And the utility rooms at the back were occupied by...oh my...chickens!  They, apparently, thought it was too cold outside and came in for some warmth.

While the Freeman Farm is a replication of a working farm from the 1830's, the next house, in stark contrast, is furnished and equipped as the house of a wealthy merchant of the time.  Fine furnishings, beautiful linens, china, elaborate wallpapers, etc. can be found throughout the Salem Towne House.

This room, an upstairs bedroom, has a collapsible wall between it and another adjoining bedroom.  Opening up this wall enabled the original owners to use the larger area as a ballroom.  How fun it would've been to attend a small dance in this beautiful room!

I hope you enjoyed your tour!
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