Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Another year begins...

This year seems set for a new series of challenges. Perhaps that is the reality of life. Maybe all we do really is negotiate our way through 'life events' - some good, some less so. I guess it is how we allow those events to shape our emotions and responses that dictates whether we can feel positive about them.

So, in an an effort to remind myself that even when things feel a bit bleak there are beautiful, funny and poignant moments I have resolved today to try to capture more again - both thoughts and in pictures as we meander through 2018. I feel I want to freeze frame some memories, just in case the sands of time run away...

Today, Mum and I took a trip to nearby Blickling Hall to breathe some crisp winter air and wander round the winter gardens. Although this has never been my favourite NT property, there is no doubt that it is a stunning building, with beautifully kept gardens and some fascinating stories and secrets in the fabric of the house and its contents. I always wonder what visitors to this mansion, built in 1620, must have thought as they arrived at its imposing front entrance...

I'm not sure I quite know what to make of the stars adorning the neatly clipped hedges or the somewhat surprised looking twiggy reindeer either side of the path in the main garden...

...but I suppose they are a bit of harmless festive fun, if a bit starkly contrasting to the rather imposing house with its royal connections.

Although it was cold today, it was very still and the view across to the lake was very peaceful...

I have been to Blickling many times before but don't think I have ever visited the walled gardens before, where the original grandeur is being gradually recreated with fruit espaliers, rows of productive beds and greenhouses. Of course, the winter kitchen garden is a bit sparse and we decided, come what may this year, we will endeavour to return regularly throughout the year to see the changes through the seasons.

But even mid-Winter, a strip of chard threw a bold splash of colour in the low sunshine...

So today...I am thankful that we could walk in the sunshine, admire the fastidiousness of the walled garden and tread the boards walked by Elizabethan ladies and gentlemen, imagining them sweeping down the imposing staircase in impossibly uncomfortable (but undeniably elegant!) grandeur. And that, even after many visits, we learned new things about the ageing of textiles and the lives of the staff running this place as a grand household even in the 1920's. That we could warm up over a bowl of soup in the pub on the estate and enjoy the bliss of no mobile phone signal for a few hours! Then laugh about the flurry of incoming messages as we rejoined the mobile network half a mile down the road! 

Note to self...remember the proper camera next time! Which is another thing to be thankful for - at least the phone is a substitute!

S x


  1. We went many years ago when we were on holiday in the area, it is a grand looking building.
    Wishing you a very Happy New Year xxx

  2. I've never been here so I enjoyed seeing your photos. Lovely to see you back and blogging!


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