Friday, 25 July 2008

Cherry Delight

Well, what a great week this is turning out to be!  We are at last having a spell of hot sunny weather which actually makes it feel as though summer has arrived.  My sister has been staying this week and so we've been out and about.  Yesterday, was a day of pure unadulterated shopping.  Adele is equally as mad as me about crafting, sewing, and fabrics so we had a lovely time in the West End taking in Liberty and Cath Kidston in particular and having an afternoon pit-stop at Patisserie Valerie.  

On Wednesday, we ventured into Kent as it was time to pick our cherries.  In a recent issue of my beloved Country Living magazine, there was a feature on "rent a cherry tree" and as it was soon to be my other half's birthday and he loves cherries, (in particular ones grown in England and indeed Kent as that's where he's from), I decided to rent him a cherry tree!  We have received updates on the tree by email and this week was designated as picking time for our tree.  Unfortunately, Andy was unable to get time off from work to accompany us  but he has been enjoying the fruits of our labours (hee hee).  The farm is located in a lovely unspoilt rural area.  The trees are all netted because our feathered friends really enjoy cherries too.

My motley labour force...

There are various types of tree which fruit at slightly different times.  We were designated a "Colney" tree and I was pleased to see that the fruits are of the luscious deep red variety.  Oh yum!

There were a lot of people there picking their trees and most had made a day out of it, some had brought a picnic.  It was a scene of which Country Living would undoubtedly have been proud...

The trees are quite small but it was fairly heavily laden with fruit and we set to work and soon had lots to show for our efforts:

Once we got home, I weighed the cherries and we have roughly 22lbs! Needless to say, I'll be hitting the cookbooks today to find what I can make with all this glorious bounty!

We finished picking and whilst meandering along on our way, we saw signs for 'The Old Rose Nursery".  As we sisters are both rose devotees, we eagerly set down a narrow and windy country lane whereupon a sight of unbridled beauty unfolded.  

We enjoyed chatting with the owner who was very knowledgeable about roses.  I bought "The Alchemyst" which I had admired at this year's Chelsea Flower Show which I'm going to train against a wall at the cottage.  If you are in the vicinity of Northiam in Kent, it is well worth a visit and the prices are the most reasonable I have seen for roses.  There is a good selection of old varieties, modern hybrid teas and new French varieties and English Roses too.  (Check opening times as I know they are soon shutting for a few weeks for a Summer break.)

As it was time for lunch, we headed off to Tenterden.  Here there is a good array of shops, lots of individual ones not seen on every high street, and I particularly like Mia Home.  It is a feast for the eyes...

I bought the book "Creating Vintage Style" which is waiting for me to enjoy it hopefully sometime over the weekend...

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