Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Days at Home


Last night after dinner the sunshine illuminating the bouquet of peonies prompted me to grab my camera. I love the frilly elegance of the blooms and their faintly spicy scent. They have not been too bothered by the wild winds we've had again, unlike the petunias whose blossoms are pulled loose occasionally. 

We celebrated two birthday girls this week, a 12-year-old and a 5-year-old. Each one celebrated with their friends and we got together for a family party on Sunday afternoon. The 5-year-old's mother, Ashley, made 11 stick unicorns for the guests, with rainbow manes. Each guest was able to choose flowers and jewels to glue on - Nana manned one of the hot glue guns. The girls were enchanted and rode their ponies aka unicorns around the garden. Ashley said she knew it was a bit over the top, but she's been studying all year for a master's degree and craved doing something creative. 

On a very hot July day in 2016 Tim and I walked in Frith Wood, part of the Laurie Lee Nature Reserve. I had not heard of Laurie Lee prior to our visit to the woods, and have been looking for his memoir, Cide With Rosie. When Tim's sister visited a week or two ago, the two of us spent some time in a used bookstore. I picked up a couple of books and then on my way out the door spied this lovely, like-new hardcover illustrated Cider With Rosie. I went right back to the cashier. It's a lovely tale, so far, of life in the early 20th century. I am looking forward to spending more time with the book. You can read about our visit to Frith Wood here

Dear Paris, by Janice MacLeod, is a collection of illustrated letters written by a Canadian woman living in Paris. Her observations of Parisian life are delightful to read. Makes me want to return to that beautiful city. 

Here at home Lichfield Angel rose (a David Austin variety) is just stunning. Such a proliferation of creamy pink blossoms. I wish I could have you all over for tea to show her off. The rose is named for a very old Anglo-Saxon carving discovered at Lichfield Cathedral in 2003. 

What's blooming in your garden these days? 


  1. Reading your post about your visit to Frith Wood was special since I just finished rereading A Fine Romance, Falling in love with the English Countryside by Susan Branch. She tells of those narrow 'roads' and the experiences she and her husband had driving on the "wrong" side of the road. I wonder if you've read it.
    The pink rose is so lovely. Lots of roses blooming here most of them rugosas. The scent is amazing. Also amazing that the wind we had didn't blow all the flowers away.

  2. What fun to decorate the unicorns at the party. It's been a while since we've been in a used bookstore. There are none in our area. It is like finding buried treasure when you spot the book you've been looking for. Your peonies are beautiful. I'm enjoying the scent right now filling our home from the bouquet of white and soft pink I picked today. The day lilies are starting to bloom and the lavender is looking very promising. We got some great gusts of wind today. Hope the rest of your week goes well.

  3. I love the Cotswolds I have been living there for a year, live the cottages, the gardens and all the beauties of National Trust.
    Our peonies have finished blooming the roses are in bloom, but spoiled by the rain.
    Have a nice trip to Europe. We will go back to the Netherlands in Autumn. I hope you’ll have nice weather because our daughter had a storm and heavy rain. It is cold here too and constant rain.

  4. I've not seen stick unicorns before - ha ha -= bet they loved them. Our neighbour has roses in her garden and every year when they bloom I am reminded of their glorious sent. I like to sit and read downwind of them.

  5. Your photo of the peonies in the sun is lovely! I can imagine the delight of the little party guests when they realized that they were going to have their own unicorns to decorate, to play with, AND to take home! Glad you were able to find Cider With Rosie. It's fun to stumble on something that you've been looking for.

  6. The peonies here are long past so it was nice to see yours looking so lovely.
    Ashley's unicorns are amazing. What a unique and fun idea. I would have loved to see the girls riding through the garden on them.
    So nice that you found the Cider With Rosie book. I found that exact book in a thrift shop a few years ago along with one that looks identical in red with white polka dots. It is Lark Rise To Candleford. Believe it or not, I have yet to read them. Now, after reading your posts, I will be delving into them soon.
    In my garden the hydrangeas are taking center stage.

  7. Waiting for the peonies here! Yours are gorgeous!

  8. Your peonies are stunning!
    Congrats to your granddaughters on their Birthdays! Two creative girls' celebrations, and a Sunday family party - that looks and sounds great!
    Many happy returns of the Birthdays!

  9. What a lovely idea to have a unicorn party. It's something they will remember for a long time.

  10. I so enjoyed your post. Loved the stick unicorns for the birthday party - what a fun idea! And I've put the titles of those two books you mentioned into my shopping cart - they both look wonderful. Your peonies are gorgeous. Ours are just budding now and probably will start spilling out in a week or two. Happy Day, Lorrie!

  11. What gorgeous flowers, Lorrie. Your peonies, especially! Ad the party unicorns are so cute. I love Janice MacLeod's Paris Letters. She has two books and I'm not sure which this is but I know I have to get the one I haven't read!

  12. Your peonies are lovely,
    what a lovely idea of ​​unicorns for birthdays!
    The Lichfield Angel rose fantastic!!
    Of the books you chose I would love to have the one with the letters from Paris!!

  13. Dear Lorrie, I had coffee, but I also like to come for tea :-)))
    the roses are now a splendor.
    But I also particularly like your beautiful peonies, this pale pink makes the dark pink really shine... and you know, we could sew together after tea, imagine that :-)) A happy wave to you.
    p.s. The hobby horses or unicorns with sticks are absolutely stunning, I can see the children playing with them.

  14. Such a lovely post, Lorrie. Books and flowers:) The book about Paris sounds wonderful (I've not been) and the cover is just beautiful.

  15. Your peonies are gorgeous, Lorrie!
    Love the idea of unicorns for birthdays. How cute!

    Have a great weekend!

  16. Your garden is looking stunning and I’m sure bringing much pleasure. Cider with Rosie is a favourite book. B x

  17. I love you post. I will search of this book is translated into Dutch. Wow, wow what a nice unicorns. I love them.

    In my garden: lavender and with roses. It smells so good.

  18. This post is bound to make every reader smile happily. Your flowers are lovely and the unicorns look really cute. I believe I would love those books as well.
    The last ten days or so have been wonderful here, bright sunshine and some brief rain showers. The peonies don't bloom yet but the first roses and flowering raspberries start to open. Irises, lilacs and, of course, lupins have been flowering already for some time. No human-made scent can be lovelier than those of plants.
    Happy Sunday!

  19. I enjoy hot glue guns!!!

  20. Anonymous1:42 PM

    That must have been such fun to decorate the unicorns at the party, I'm sure all had a fabulous time.

    Belated birthday wishes to the girls.

    All the best Jan

    PS those peonies are beautiful.


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