May 25, 2015

May Flowers in Remembrance!

Decoration Day!
Nanny Nettie-Kin loves the beautiful fragrances of the stunning lilacs and the delicate lily-of-the-valley! Nanny Nettie-Kin was made by talented doll carver Judy Brown.

Lilacs are usually in bloom near Decoration Day. When I think of lilacs I think of going with my Grandmum, taking lilacs, putting them in canning jars and placing them on the graves of our ancestors. Graves are always decorated in remembrance of those who have gone before on Decoration Day. Decoration Day was traditionally celebrated on May 30th.




In the book "Wings from the Wind, An Anthology of Poems Selected and Illustrated by Tasha Tudor", with "The Concord Hymn" by Ralph Waldo Emerson there is an illustration of an old gravestone with a flag and flowers growing alongside.

We at the Corgyncombe Courant are thankful to those who have served in protecting our country, thus allowing us to do all the things we love best such as smelling the flowers!


Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com



http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/05/may-flowers-in-remembrance.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

May 10, 2015

Mother's Day!

Sitting on the Lawn
Above is my Grandmum (my Father's Mum), my Mum who's expecting my little brother, and me little Diane. Look who has her arms crossed just like her Grandmum! No wonder my Mum always told me when I was little, "You're all Shepard!" When I was little I always remember Grandmum in her apron and her hair done up in a bun. She had an old Kalamazoo wood cook range that I remember her cooking and baking family meals on. She had a Jersey cow, pigs, and chickens. Her cellar was stocked full of canned goods and she was well known as a "Canning Fool". Grandmum loved to garden and she had vegetable and flower gardens. Her favorite flower was the Iris, of which she had many varieties. I remember sitting on the lawn with her making dandelion curls and eating potato chips at the same time! One of her greatest delights was bringing us a puffball that she found for my Father and I to cook and savor.

Grandmum always reminded me of Tasha Tudor!

Here is a link to a previous post about my Grandmum
at the Corgyncombe Courant:

Here is a link to a previous post about my Mum
at the Corgyncombe Courant:


Happy Mother's Day to our Dear Readers!


Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com



http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/05/mothers-day.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

April 11, 2015

Nanny Nettie-Kin's Tasha Tudor Hot Cross Buns and Bobby!

Bobby Loves Tasha Tudor Hot Cross Buns and Goat's Milk!
Nanny Nettie-Kin made Hot Cross Buns using the receipt in "The Tasha Tudor Cookbook". As we mentioned back in our "Forget-Me-Not Fair" post, little Bobby was a problem for Nanny at Hot Cross Bun baking time. This is Part Two of "Nanny Nettie-Kin Makes Tasha Tudor Hot Cross Buns"... including little Bobby.

Click Here for Lovely Music

Some of these photographs were taken last year (2014) but we have not posted them here at the Corgyncombe Courant until now.


As Nanny's back is turned, busy with putting some of her spices away, Bobby whispers to little Hitty "Nanny Nettie-Kin won't miss any of those buns."
"Bobby, they look good but maybe you shouldn't take them!" replies little Hitty.


"Nanny won't see or hear me!" Bobby whispers.


Bobby goes over to the chair and starts dragging it across the floor.


Bobby keeps a keen eye on Nanny. The chair makes scraping noises as Bobby drags it closer to the table.... squeeeak.


Bobby climbs up on the chair as Nanny turns around and exclaims "Robert! It's not nice to take Nanny's hot cross buns!"


Under her elbow, Bobby watches Nanny Nettie-Kin squeeze icing onto the hot cross buns.


Whilst the Hittys have their buns and milk, Nanny Nettie-Kin decides to have a little one-on-one talk with Bobby along with goat's milk and hot cross buns.


Sporting a milk mustache, Bobby states "But Nanny, I'm just a growing boy!"
Nanny Nettie-Kin sighs...


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 previous postings elsewhere on the internet.



Setting the Hot Cross Buns out to cool. The receipt for Hot Cross Buns is from "The Tasha Tudor Cookbook".


The buns have been frosted with a cross on top.

 Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com


http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/04/nanny-nettie-kins-tasha-tudor-hot-cross.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

April 5, 2015

A Joyful Resurrection Sunday!

A Pussy Willow Bouquet!
In the lovely light of early morn, Nanny Nettie-Kin arranges a pussy willow bouquet.


This photograph of Nanny Nettie-Kin arranging a pussy willow bouquet was taken last year (2014) but we have not posted it here at the Corgyncombe Courant until now.

Whilst out and about yesterday I noticed that the pussy willows had barely started to come out here this year.

We at the Corgyncombe Courant hope that our Dear Readers have a Joyful Resurrection Sunday!

Soon to come, we will have Part Two of Nanny Nettie-Kin Makes Tasha Tudor Hot Cross Buns... including little Bobby.

Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com


http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/04/a-joyful-resurrection-sunday.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

April 3, 2015

Nanny Nettie-Kin Makes Tasha Tudor Hot Cross Buns!

A Tasha Tudor Easter Time Tradition!
Traditionally for years at Easter time I have made the Hot Cross Buns using the receipt in "The Tasha Tudor Cookbook". Receipt is an old fashioned term for recipe. Nanny Nettie-Kin also uses the same receipt to make Hot Cross Buns for the Hittys at Pumpkin House.


Tasha Tudor's Scottish Nanny used to make these hot cross buns, as well. Nanny Nettie-Kin thinks they are delicious!

These photographs of Nanny Nettie-Kin were taken last year (2014) but we have not posted them here at the Corgyncombe Courant until now.

Nanny Nettie-Kin uses real goat's milk and butter from Corgyncombe Dairy Goat Carmella Lucille. As you can see on the little plate the goat's butter is white. Nanny heats the goat's milk to just the right temperature for dissolving the yeast.


A photograph of Carmella Lucille taken in the pretty, rosy copper light before sunset. She was watching us run and play with her goat kiddles in the Corgyn yard that we call the "Corg'ery".


 After rising, Nanny Nettie-Kin adds the warm melted butter and kneads the dough to make Tasha Tudor Hot Cross Buns. She sets the dough aside to rise again.


After the dough has risen again, she shapes the dough into buns and sets them to rise again.


Nanny Nettie-Kin opens the oven door to her stove the "Ark" and checks to see if her hot cross buns are finished baking. Nanny says they are done just right and asks me to photograph them before she takes them out of the oven.





At the Corgyncombe Bakery, I make Hot Cross Buns, too. After the first rising, warm melted butter is added and the dough is kneaded a bit more.


The dough has risen again.


After rising, the dough is shaped into buns and set aside to rise again.


Above is little Bobby at the Forget-Me-Not Fair.

As we mentioned back in our "Forget-Me-Not Fair" post, little Bobby was a problem for Nanny at Hot Cross Bun baking time. Soon we will have Part Two of Nanny Nettie-Kin Makes Tasha Tudor Hot Cross Buns... including little Bobby.

The carved wooden dolls were made by talented doll carver Judy Brown.
Their furniture was made by talented Roy Bubbenmoyer.

Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com



http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/04/nanny-nettie-kin-makes-tasha-tudor-hot.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

March 30, 2015

A Red Squirrel in the Cottage!

The Red-Wings Have Returned!
One morn, in the wee hours, the dogs were alarmed by the presence of a little red squirrel in the cottage. We secured the canines and, using boards, created a safe path to direct the squirrel out of doors. Before the little squirrel went out the door he paused and looked up at me, we had a moment of silent communication, and then he calmly went out the door.
The photograph above is of the little red squirrel or one of his relatives.



It has been a bitterly cold, blustery winter at Corgyncombe.
Above, is a photograph of our smokehouse covered with snow that I took several weeks ago. Now, the snow level is down a bit, a few inches below the latch of the smokehouse door. There is still quite a cover of snow about the landscape and it is snowing this afternoon! We could still have snowbanks in May at Corgyncombe.

The Red-Winged Blackbirds have been late in returning to Corgyncombe. Finally, on March 24th, the o-ka-lee of the Red-Wing was heard and what a welcome sound it was, indeed!


I took our Christmas tree down around St. Patrick's Day. We cut it in December and it was still holding its needles in March. It was just so pretty I hated to take it down. Whilst removing the ornaments, I recognized the white ball with pink roses as similar to the one shown on the dolls' Christmas tree in the Tasha Tudor Christmas video.

 Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com



http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/03/a-red-squirrel-in-cottage.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

March 7, 2015

Valentine's Day at Towpath Cottage!

Bobby Takes a Tumble!
 Hittys gathered round the table of old fashioned Valentines.
A Valentine Party of Tillie Tinkham's Sewing Circle was held at Towpath Cottage.

Click Here for Lovely Music

Towpath Cottage is where Hitty Beth lives with her Mum who is our dear friend.
We enjoyed Valentine cookies and tea and lively conversation with Hitty Beth's Mum. We all had a delightful time!

Old fashioned Valentines were made and given.
The carved wooden dolls were made by talented doll carver Judy Brown.

Tillie Tinkham holding a Valentine.


Hitty Diane and little Andy looking at a lovely Valentine.


Sitting under the table Andy cuts out a special little Valentine for Hitty Diane. How she loves it!


Hitty Beth receives a flowered Valentine.


Tillie holds a pretty Valentine for Ima.


In the background one can see the opening for the stairway. Whilst the Hittys were assembling for their Valentine Party, Bobby, in his haste to rush up the stairway, tumbled down the stairs! Although he later recovered and was not permanently injured, Bobby had to sit out the party with an ice bag on his head.


Above is Bobby at the Forget-Me-Not Fair.

Bobby was in a hurry to get to the Valentine table to pick out the prettiest Valentine for Hitty Diane. Bobby was annoyed that he missed the party and very irked about Hitty Diane and Andy.


Last Autumn we serendipitously found a dollhouse for the little Hittys.
Here Bobby is trying to impress Hitty Diane by hopping up on the porch rail to peek in the bay window. Hitty Diane is alarmed and throws up her hands warning Bobby that he could fall and Nanny wouldn't like him balancing on the porch rail.


Bobby hopped over the porch rail and then he lost his balance and tumbled off. He felt quite smug until he tumbled off. This was before little Andy came to Corgyncombe....

Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com


http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/03/valentines-day-at-towpath-cottage.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

February 14, 2015

Hearts, Flowers and Tasha Tudor!

Valentine's Day and Delights from the Herbary!
Emma and "Little Dear One" at Old Sturbridge Village in the Salem Towne House garden.
What a warm, serene and delightful sight on this blustery, cold and snowy Valentine's Day!
Salem Towne was a cousin through old New England family lines to my great great great grandmother Sarah Towne.


Emma and her lovely clothing were made by talented dollmaker Margaret Flavin.

Emma brought the herbs from home. She picked them from the Corgyncombe Garden of Herbs. She fashioned them into a tussie mussie that includes feverfew, lavender, lemon thyme, and rose geranium.


The Herbary at Corgyncombe.


 I made a special Valentine cake using "The Tudor Family's Valentine Cake" receipt in Tasha Tudor's book "All for Love".
It is so delicious at Valentines tea!


During the Days of Valentines we display some of our Tasha Tudor Valentine delights at the Corgyncombe Library. In the upper left is Tasha's "Be Mine" Valentine Calendar. It has 14 doors to open with quotes behind them. The book in the upper right is Tasha Tudor's "A Time to Keep". "A Time to Keep" and "Around the Year" (not pictured) are such beautifully illustrated books for those who like to partake in all the seasons' monthly celebrations! There is always something nice to look forward to in the upcoming season. They are two of my favorite Tasha Tudor books and I highly recommend them. Below "A Time to Keep" is the "Dr. Cupid Corgi" Valentine card, "The Jenny Wren Book of Valentines", and the "Be Mine" Valentine card. In the lower right is "Dr. Cupid Corgi's Laboratory of Love" Valentine calendar with 14 doors to open. In the lower left are the wrappings from a gift that Tasha Tudor gave us. Next is "All for Love" filled with poetry, songs, and Tasha Tudor's Valentine traditions. It was a gift from my husband.

Tasha Tudor's work is always so cheerful and lovely, especially in February near Valentine's Day when it's cold and snowy outside! The "Be Mine" Valentine Calendar and "Dr. Cupid Corgi's Laboratory of Love" Valentine Calendar are such fun to open as Valentine's Day approaches! My daughter Sarah was the model for the little girl in Tasha Tudor's "Be Mine" Valentine Calendar and Valentine card.

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 previous postings elsewhere on the internet.

The Hittys, The Little Dolls of Pumpkin House, celebrated Valentine's Day yesterday at Towpath Cottage with our friends Hitty Beth and her Mum. We will feature Valentine's Day at Towpath Cottage in a future post!

Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com


http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/02/hearts-flowers-and-tasha-tudor.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

February 2, 2015

Tillie Tinkham's Sewing Circle at Towpath Cottage!

Little Girl and Dolly Play Time!
 The next meeting of Tillie Tinkham's Sewing Circle was held at Hitty Beth's dollhouse, "Towpath Cottage". Hitty Beth belongs to our dear friend and we were so happy to visit Hitty Beth and her wonderful dollhouse!

Click Here for Fun Music


Tillie Tinkham is measuring Hitty Beth for the new frock that she is helping the girls to make. The girls are learning to sew under the tutelage of Tillie Tinkham, the seamstress mouse at Corgyncombe. The Hittys were made by talented doll carver Judy Brown.


Tillie Tinkham's Sewing Circle Emblem!
Tillie Tinkham on her tuffet with her golden metal thimble!


Little Hitty Diane peeks around the dress form, ever so quietly as to not disturb Tillie Tinkham as she is beginning to cut into the fabric.


After Tillie is done measuring, Hitty helps Hitty Beth put back on her lovely frock made by Judy Brown.


"Towpath Cottage"
The roof and front come off and inside are four rooms. The dollhouse is very old and has wooden casters to roll it around the floor. The Little Dolls of Pumpkin House and Tillie Tinkham were delighted to visit Hitty Beth
at Towpath Cottage!

A towpath is a path where boats were pulled along a canal by horses or mules.


My cousins and friends liked to come over to my play house and backyard to play. All three of us girls brought our dollies to play!


The playhouse my Daddy made for me.

Here is a link to our post at
the Corgyncombe Courant
about a previous
Tillie Tinkham's Sewing Circle Meeting:


Our email:
atthecottagegate@yahoo.com


http://corgyncombecourant.blogspot.com/2015/02/tillie-tinkhams-sewing-circle-at.html
copyright © 2015 Diane Shepard Johnson and Sarah E. Johnson
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~