August 1, 2019

Beatrix Potter Picnic Birthday Celebration!

Beatrix Potter's Books Delighting Through the Years!
An old English picnic tea basket with tea kettle and burner. When my father helped his friend Ralph move there were many wonderful things that Ralph gave to us. This splendid picnic tea basket was one!

"In the Good Old Summer Time" was a popular song when Ralph was a little boy.

A likeness of Ralph when he was little. He and his family must have had wonderful picnics when he was a child!  Perhaps, much to his Mummy's delight, he picked a flower for her! The flower is in Ralph's silver baby cup. Many years later, Ralph's widow gave me a little red velvet suit that Ralph wore when he was even younger than shown above.

In Beatrix Potter's "The Tale of Tom Kitten", in preparation for guests for tea, Tom's Mum Tabitha Twitchit dresses him in a sweet little blue suit that unfortunately is getting much too small for him.

July 28th was the 153rd anniversary of Beatrix Potter's birthday!
Beatrix Potter's stories have delighted children for years with their lovely illustrations and charming tales. When the books were first published Ralph was just at the age to enjoy them thoroughly!

Corgyncombe Lake District

Tom Kitten looks longingly out the window alongside a bouquet of cosmos.

When Tom Kitten's Mum let him go play outside, his buttons fell off as he tried to climb a stone wall and then his fancy suit came off.  The Puddle-Ducks took Tom's and his sisters' clothes and tried them on themselves!

Thumb cookies from the Corgyncombe Bakery at a picnic in the Corgyncombe Gardens.

Beatrix Higgs having strawberries and tea at the meadow's edge. Beatrix Higgs is wearing English clogs, as did both Beatrix Potter and Benjamin Bunny. One can see the clog-irons on her clogs as she sits having her picnic.

Iron on the underside of the clogs.

"The Tale of Benjamin Bunny" by Beatrix Potter.
See his little clogs!

Sarah cutting bread at a picnic with the same picnic tea basket and a jug of lemonade.

In Beatrix Potter's "The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck", Jemima is sent by the fox Mr. Tod, to look for the herbs for stuffing... The old apothecary jar holds sage from my garden of herbs.

Foxglove in the Corgyncombe Garden of Herbs

Beatrix Potter's Birthday Tea was held one year on her birthday, July 28th, near the mossy log down by the creek!

My daughter Sarah and I are admirers of Beatrix Potter and feel a kinship with her. We enjoyed teas, elevenishes and delightful conversations with Tasha Tudor. What fun it would have been to have had Beatrix Potter with us also... what we all together could have talked about... bunnies, gardens, ducks, old houses, old barns, hills and dales, and other aspects of country life and landscapes.

Most of my ancestors hailed from old England. Our English heritage is deeply ingrained in who we are and what we love!

The book on the table is open to Beatrix Potter's "The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck".

Beatrix Potter cookies with Jemima Puddle-duck and Peter Rabbit with his Mum who is buttoning his little jacket.
The Beatrix Potter teapot shows Jeremy Fisher the frog fishing on a lily pad.
Alongside are figurines of Jemima Puddle-duck and Peter Rabbit.

I made a tussie mussie using larkspur, lavender, thyme, winter savory, rosemary, wild marjoram, rose geranium leaves, and baby's breath all gathered from the Corgyncombe Garden of Herbs.

The little mouse knitting is based upon Beatrix Potter's illustration of the "Old woman who lived in a shoe" in "Appley Dapply's Nursery Rhymes". It is one of our favorite Beatrix Potter illustrations! The little knitting mouse's cap reminds us of the white cap that Bridget likes to wear. "The Tale of Peter Rabbit" book on the table is a limited edition reproduction of Beatrix Potter's first privately printed Peter Rabbit book and has the original illustrations with Beatrix's own handwriting. The dust jacket is a reproduction of calico printed by Beatrix's grandfather's calico printworks. It is such a sweet book!

From the Corgyncombe Vegetable Garden, radishes gathered in a trug with some fresh cut spearmint on the red and white spotted handkerchief.

In Beatrix Potter's "The Tale of Peter Rabbit", after eating lettuce and french beans, Peter Rabbit found some radishes and ate til he felt quite ill!

The red and white spotted handkerchief reminds us of Peter Rabbit's mum's red and white spotted handkerchief that was used by the little naughty bunnies, Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny, to gather onions in Beatrix Potter's "The Tale of Benjamin Bunny". The handkerchief is also seen in "The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle" as it has been laundered and folded by Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle, who, alas, could not get the smell of onions out. Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle then delivered the handkerchief to the bunnies who were hiding amongst the ferns along the way and gladly received the laundered handkerchief.

 The teapot is one of my favorites and has Jemima Puddle-duck and, as Beatrix Potter said, the "foxy-whiskered gentleman" walking about discussing things of importance, such as nesting. The "foxy-whiskered gentleman" was all too interested! There are foxgloves on either side of the Jemima Puddle-duck and the "foxy-whiskered gentleman".

Beatrix Higgs is wearing an old English smock.

Rose Hips hanging from the mantel and an old English shepherd's staff alongside.

In "The Workwoman's Guide", originally published in 1838, there is instruction on making a smock.

In referencing bunnies and knitted rabbit wool items from Beatrix Potter's stories and a knitting pattern, Tasha Tudor mentioned "The Workwoman's Guide" and wrote to us:
"You must have read Sarah 'The Tale of the Flopsy Bunnies.' Remember they gave Mrs. Tittlemouse enough rabbit wool to knit several pairs of muffatees?! 'The Workwoman's Guide' has directions. Maybe you also own this invaluable work?"

We at Corgyncombe find that "The Workwoman's Guide" is indeed a most valuable guide. It contains information, patterns, and instructions relating to bonnets and caps, collars, stitches, shawls, frocks, sleeves, knitting, household items, and many other things. The book has instructions for making little stitches and "neat" and "neatly" are predominant words.

Tillie Tinkham, the seamstress mouse for the dolls and critters at Corgyncombe, is in agreement with Tasha Tudor: "The Workwoman's Guide" is an "invaluable work"!

Sarah and Daisy, we call her Daisy Petals. Can you see why?

Tillie Tinkham, the seamstress mouse for the dolls and critters at Corgyncombe.

Lovely hills and dales add such character to the landscape.
Ahhh, how we love the hills!
As the hills were to Beatrix Potter and Tasha Tudor,
the hills are a great inspiration to us.

My garden and sheep at pasture.

Sarah in pasture with Corgyncombe Dairy Goat Carmella Lucille and other goats, too. She is wearing an old fashioned English smock and is holding her great grandfather's old hay rake.

Little Emma has brought her chair out into the garden and is showing the Little Dear One "The Tale of The Pie and the Patty-Pan" written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter.

The book is open to Beatrix Potter's illustration of Ribby the Cat, with a pitcher of milk and a plate of butter, returning from the farm on a path crossing the pasture where the cows are grazing.

As Emma and the Little Dear One were admiring this picture, an unknown cat was seen running through the field.

Little Dear One said "That Kitty is not dressed as nicely as Ribby with her lovely frock and shawl." Emma said "That is not as 'genteel' a Kitty as Ribby." Emma remembers that in "The Tale of The Pie and The Patty-Pan" Ribby says that Duchess is "a most genteel and elegant little dog."

The cows at pasture with the lovely hillside landscape in the background.

In Beatrix Potter's "The Tale of The Pie and The Patty-Pan", Ribby, with a pitcher of milk and a plate of butter, is returning from the farm on a path crossing the pasture where the cows are grazing.

One thinks of Peter Rabbit hiding in the watering can...

Upon filling my water can I thought it was just a leaf in the bottom of the water can and thought nothing of it, until something wet and slimy touched my hand. I set the water can down and "it" went back into the water. The camera was fetched and I, The Corgyncombe Courant photographer, tipped the water can, and photographed it as it emerged.

 Ah yes, 'twas Mr. Toad, this brings to mind Mr. Jackson in "The Tale of Mrs. Tittlemouse" by Beatrix Potter. As Mr. Toad retreated back to a cooler spot in the shade under the porch, a "Babbity Bumble" bee was seen buzzing close by.

Sarah at a picnic with Tasha Corgi. The picnic tea basket is at the left in the photograph.

Sarah joined Tasha Corgi for a nap, nose to nose!

Tillie Tinkham, holding forget-me-nots from the banks of Corgi Creek, stands by her Park Avenue door.

Hunca Munca at the door of the doll's house.
Along with the dust in the dustpan is swept up Corgi hair.
Beatrix Potter wrote and illustrated the adorable book "The Tale of Two Bad Mice", published in 1904.

Tillie Tinkham has a frock and millinery shop, "Tillie Tinkham's Frocks and Fashions", on the ground floor of the old dollhouse that came with the address 863 Park Avenue above the door. The little girl who originally owned it lived at 863 Park Avenue.

Like Beatrix Potter's doll's house at Hill Top this dollhouse has two large doors in front that open up to see the delights inside.

Hitty pours herself another cup of tea at "Tillie Tinkham's Frocks and Fashions" with Millinery and Tea Room at 863 Park Avenue. Tillie balances on her rose tuffet and sips her tea.

How nice and cozy and inspiring, writing next to the 863 Park Avenue dollhouse!

"The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle" by Beatrix Potter.
Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle is a hedgehog laundress.

Mrs. Tiggywinkle the hedgehog suggests that Lucy check on the progress of the drying stockings.

Hitty Holly and Ivy doing the wash and hanging the clothes to dry. Little Lolly sits by the wash tub.

 "The Tailor of Gloucester", written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter, is a story of mice who help the tailor at night to finish his work.
Whilst the cat was away, the curious Tailor, upon hearing tip, tap, tip, tap, sets free the mice that the cat had captured under tea-cups.
In the photograph above, there is a charkha spindle of my handspun silk. In the small bowl is cochineal for dyeing the silk a pleasant shade of cherry. Do you hear a tip, tap, tip, tap, tip?

Beatrix Potter wrote and illustrated "The Tailor of Gloucester", the story in which the mice help the tailor finish a very important garment in time.
Behind the Tailor mouse figurine is an old apothecary jar filled with dried roses.

 The wheelbarrow was Ralph's. He gave it to my father when he helped him move. Ralph's widow was thrilled to see that I still put it to good use!

Using my High Dumpsie Dearie jam, an old English jam, in a Roly Poly Pudding produced my creation of Corgyncombe High Dumpsie Dearie Roly Poly Pudding!
On the cup is Beatrix Potter's Flopsy Bunny standing by potted geraniums.

Plums in a favorite yellowware bowl with High Dumpsie Dearie jam alongside.

High Dumpsie Dearie is an old English receipt for jam made with apples, pears, and plums with some bruised ginger.

High Dumpsie Dearie jam is rolled up in the dough and steamed to make a Corgyncombe High Dumpsie Dearie Roly Poly Pudding.

In Beatrix Potter's "The Tale of Samuel Whiskers or The Roly-Poly Pudding", published in 1908, Anna Maria the Rat steals some dough for a planned Roly-Poly Pudding. Samuel Whiskers the Rat steals the butter and the rolling pin from the dairy... a rolling pin being necessary to make a Roly-Poly pudding.
Tom Kitten attempted to hide from his Mum by going up the chimney. He was in hopes of getting to the roof where he could catch sparrows. Whilst working his way to the roof he accidentally fell into the Rat's room and was tied up by Anna Maria the Rat. Anna Maria's husband Samuel Whiskers requested that she make for him a "kitten dumpling roly-poly pudding". A butter covered Tom Kitten was then placed and wrapped in the dough, and then dough and Kitten were rolled with the "Roly-Poly" pin. Tom Kitten was to be a Roly-Poly Pudding!

Samuel Whiskers the Rat sitting by the "Roly-Poly" Pin with gathered vegetables, tomatoes and bread for his wife Anna Maria to steal away with.
Samuel Whiskers is a Beatrix Potter figurine based on her book.

Tom Kitten's sister Mittens, who had hidden away in the dairy, exclaimed to her mother that she had seen "a dreadful 'normous big rat" who swiped away a rolling pin and a pat of butter.

Corgyncombe High Dumpsie Dearie Roly Poly Pudding and chamomile tea in a Peter Rabbit cup at tea.
Tom Kitten looks rather wide eyed at the thought of being rolled and served up in a Roly-Poly Pudding!

 As coincidence would have it, the same day we found our Beatrix Flopsy Bunny we also acquired a copy of Beatrix Potter's "The Story of A Fierce Bad Rabbit".
Above, little Beatrix Flopsy Bunny looks at the cover of Beatrix Potter's, "The Story of A Fierce Bad Rabbit". On the cover is the "Fierce Bad Rabbit" with the hunter in the background.

Inside, the "nice gentle Rabbit" is nibbling on a carrot given to him by his Mummy. Beatrix Flopsy Bunny is closely examining the "nice gentle Rabbit's" carrot and gets a better look at the big nasty "Fierce Bad Rabbit" who is bounding up in the background to steal away the "nice gentle Rabbit's" carrot.

Atop the work table Beatrix Flopsy Bunny thinks she would like to try some tea...

Some of the photographs and some of the writings on this post are from previous Corgyncombe Courant posts that can be found here on the Corgyncombe Courant and from our web site and our previous postings elsewhere on the internet.

Please do not "Pin" our photographs.
Please do not post our photographs on facebook.

Our email:
If you receive an email you think is from me from this email, please make sure it is, and not just something that sounds similar.

Photographs, images, and text copyright © 2000-2019 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson. All rights reserved. Photographs, images, and/or text may not be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson.
copyright © 2019 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson