Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Of Quilts & Gardens







King John's Garden is one of Romsey's hidden gems. I walk through it on my way into town whenever I can. It's one of those precious places that's special whatever the weather or season. I go there for peace, for solace, for inspiration, to breathe and sometimes to sit and think. When I read this week that my friend Mel had been experiencing tough times, it was King John's I knew I needed to take a photo of to send to her to cheer her. 

The garden is part of an ancient complex of buildings on one of Romsey's oldest thoroughfares. The oldest building dates from the 13th Century, with later Tudor and Victorian additions. The 13th Century property was owned by the Abbey until the reformation in 1539. The garden itself is managed by a group of volunteers who do a fantastic job of caring for it. There are several sections to the garden: the plants in the first section were all in cultivation before 1700; there is a medieval herber style section and a victorian flower garden, there are old roses and clematis, passion flowers like the one above and a number of fruit trees, also myrtle and medlar, and a wildflower area. The garden is bordered along one side by a stream. It attracts a wealth of insects- I saw a hornet hoverfly, a pied hoverfly and various butterfly species as well as bees all busy nectaring on the wildflowers in the space of half an hour as I happily wandered through the garden. There is also a delicious tea room where we take Uncle Charles. He has chocolate cake and M and I have scones. Yum!

In other news, F awaits his A Level results on Aug 17th and it occurred to me this morning that I need to get on and make his 'going away to uni' quilt. It hardly seems any time since I was doing one for J, when in fact it was two years ago. In another two years it will be L I'm making one for. I find I don't want to think too much about that! Anyhoo, I had a lovely time choosing the fabrics (and working out the maths last night with L- how many 25cm squares can you get out of a metre's worth of fabric and how many metres will I need for 40 squares, plus the border and what does that all add up to so I know how much wadding and backing fabric to buy. It was quite a challenge but we got there in the end!). Here's what I've chosen. The first pic is the material for the squares on the front of the quilt (if we got our maths right, there should be enough for 8 squares from each fabric pattern). In the second photo, the green stars are the border, the stripes the backing fabric and the red stars will be a bag to carry the quilt in. I hope he likes it! J has had hers on her bed the whole two years she's been away - she sometimes sends me pictures to prove that she's still using it :o)



Finally, I'm back running again (hooray!). Still only in 3 mile goes and slowly, but I've been off road and the knees seem to be holding up well. If tomorrow's 4 mile run goes OK then Physio Steve has promised me I can do the HM (walking down the hills and not going fast and stopping if they start hurting). Bless the man, he's even staying back at work an extra session in the evening this week so he can fit me in for a final treatment before the race. 

Hope you're all well? Ted wants me to let you all know that he and Poppy are fine and he's planning a blog post before long as he says he's owed one! In the mean time, he's Very Busy woofing at postmen and the pigeons who are nesting in the trees by the patio.

CT x








29 comments:

  1. That is such a beautiful garden. I'm not surprised you find solace there.
    Another positive running session can only be a good thing. Physio Steve obviously knows his stuff. I must try and get out myself this week but then I knew it would be difficult to get out during the Summer break with no childcare on hand.
    You've chosen some lovely fabrics for the quilt. How satisfying to make them knowing they will be well used. X

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    1. I remember well the difficulties of running during school hols. Our youngest is almost 16 - it does make training easier! Hope you manage to find a little bit of time to get out soon x

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  2. What a lovely place , I just love houses and gardens like this, a grate place to find insects too. Coffee and cake on had... couldn't think of anything better.
    Good luck to F with his exams and look forward to seeing the quilt finished.
    Amanda xx

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    1. It's a magical garden - one of those places that people are drawn to x

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  3. The garden sounds absolutely magical. Fingers crossed for F's A level results - Im sure he'll do himself (and you!) proud. Didn't L sit GCSEs too? A double whammy of stress for the household! I love your quilt fabrics and can't wait to see the finished result. My girls each received knitted blankets on going to uni. I made L a graduation quilt but I've still got a couple of years before I have to think about E's! Enjoy the running. xx

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    1. Ooh I hadn't thought about graduation homemades! Will give that some thought (although it's 2 years till J graduates and 3 for f). Yes, L is also waiting results on Aug 24th. A busy time here! He seems calm about it. Thank you for chalk paint tip- I've painted an old bookcase in napoleon blue. Fabulous colour. Xx

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  4. I love the lettering on the sign, very pretty that! And the passion flower too.

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    1. I love it too. Would love one in our garden. Might try and find out who made it.

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  5. Lovely fabrics for the quilt, I also loved your post and the lovely sign to stay off the meadow.

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    1. Thanks Marlene. It's a special place.

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  6. How brilliant, all that planning and choosing fabrics and then F will have something from home made with love to cheer him on his way. Hope the results go well as well as the knees. x

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    1. I like the idea of them having something from home to wrap themselves in should they need some home comfort. X

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  7. What a gorgeous garden, I'd definitely walk that way as well if I could. And have the chocolate cake. Great fabric choices, how lovely that J has had hers on the bed the whole time. So glad you're back running again, hope things continue to go well. I shall look forward to a post from Ted. CJ xx

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    1. It is a really magical garden with lots of interesting bits to stumble across and discover. Glad you approve of the fabric - just got to make it now! Ted feels a post containing advice for Bertie might be in order xx

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  8. Ah Medlars. Leave them up until the end of Autumn.

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    1. Sadly, it's not my tree but I will be keeping an eye on it. Would love to try a medlar.

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  9. What a lovely garden. A perfect place for contemplation. Beautiful fabrics for the quilt, I totally approve. Look forward to seeing it finished. What a lovely way to send them off to uni. We're in the thick of it at the moment. Triplets are very different to three children of different ages. Will need a darkened room for a while after they depart. Fun times tho! B x

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    1. It has that quality, maybe because it was once part of an abbey? I've been thinking of you in the thick of triplets. Bet you're having a grand if tiring time! X

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  10. It is a good feeling to know you have somewhere as beautiful as that garden to go to when times need. I love seeing the pictures, which emit a sense of great calm, even over the ether and on to my screen.
    Fun seeing the Medlar. I've never tasted one, have you?

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    1. There is definitely something special and tranquil in the garden. Never had a medlar. Might ask them if I can try one when it's ripe! X

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  11. King John's garden looks like perfect place to pause, reflect and enjoy.
    The fabrics for your son's quilt are really nice, gentle and very 'manly' at the same time (I am not sure if manly is a word, every now and then I stumble over the English as second language speaker hurdle). I look forward to seeing the finished quilt. x

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    1. Yup, manly is a word! I thought I might struggle to find fabrics suitable for a young man so I'm really pleased with them and glad you like them too. X

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  12. What a beautiful garden - it looks so tranquil and relaxing - no wonder you often visit and sit and reflect :)

    Love the quilt fabrics and look forward to seeing the finished product and so pleased you are back running again :)

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    1. I've been cutting them up today. Needless to say our maths was wrong and we have masses left over! I'm secretly thrilled as I can make some things up for me with it! X

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  13. King John's garden looks beautiful. I've got friends in Hampshire so it's not that far from us in West Sussex. Another place to visit when we're over the county border. My son goes off to uni in the Autumn too, but he deferred for a year so we don't have to wait for results this year thankfully! Hope your son gets what he needs. Arilx

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    1. It is worth a stroll round and a stop in the tea shop after! There's also a museum attached. Good luck in Sept when your son heads off- a strange time isn't it? A mixture of excitement and rebalancing. The next stage of life x

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  14. Glad you are all well, and I hope that all will be well with the exam results too! Enjoy the beauty of gardens and the quilt making in the meantime!

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  15. Currently, the only exercise I get from rain is in taking my coat on and off in all the stops and starts.

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  16. Hey CT,
    It's lovely to have a place like this to take time out and breathe. And it only feels like yesterday that you were blogging about your daughter's quilt. I can't believe our eldest kids will be in their third year of Uni come September!
    Leanne xx

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Thank you for leaving a comment. I always enjoy reading them and will try my best to reply to every one. CT x