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August 20, 2014

Another Year Older

Growing older is not without benefits... The house has been full of whispering and secretiveness and closed doors for days now.

But this morning all was revealed as Bryony and Kitty indulged me with a light-breakfast tray and their gifts, which included Turkish delight, and handmade jewellery. 

Then there was an outing with Ingrid to a new country garden and shop The Old Meadery, which sells old French country wares - all sorts of oddities and desirables. I desired an old iron day bed but instead we bought some desirable little soaps. The highlight here was the guided tour of the old garden that Anette and her husband Graeme, are making their own. I didn't get any photos there, not even of the charming little hen house, but when it was time for morning coffee I snapped Ingrid and Kitty at the counter of Soda. This cafe was set up in the countryside near Rangiora, after the February 2011 earthquake had driven its owners away from their high profile city bar and cafe. 

Definitely Rangiora's gain with excellent food and coffee and a line in imported Italian delicacies. It's always a pleasure to eat here. My sister Ingrid, treated me and Kitty to coffee and cake (I'm wearing the lacy hand-made scarf that Kitty knitted for me).

Back home I found a mysterious posy of sumptuous anemones on the door

And Ingrid gave me a beautiful box full of more indulgence.

My girls and me, thought we'd brave the nip in the spring sunshine

And lunch outdoors. 

Lovely to be able to eat in the garden again.

To finish off the day Bryony took us out for dinner

to our family's favourite restaurant in Amberley: Nor' Wester Cafe.
The cafe has recently changed hands and maybe didn't quite meet our expectations, but maybe the something that was missing was Elwin. As an end to a lovely family - and food - focussed day it was the icing on the cake (my de-constructed birthday cake is bread pudding!). 


rusty duck said...

What a great day. Happy Birthday Jeneane.

Lady Mondegreen's Secret Garden said...

Thank you rusty duck :-) Glad we were able to get outside yesterday because today is cold and stormy.

Geo. said...

What a great day! Thanks for sharing and, oh yes, Happy Birthday!

Cro Magnon said...

I usually hide away in a dark corner for my birthdays.

Looks like you had a lovely day. Belated Happy Birthday! Cro x

Lady Mondegreen's Secret Garden said...

Geo: What a nice thing to say and thank you.

Cro: Well,I didn't drive any of it. It got done to me and I didn't resist!

Steve said...

So glad you had such a great day - happy birthday!

Nana Go-Go said...

Happiest of Birthdays, Lady M! Your pics are a delight. I must tell you that my BFF of over 40 years is moving to NZ sometime in the New Year to be with her daughters and grandchildren who are already in Auckland. To say that I will be beside myself with grief when she leaves is an understatement but am trying to put it to the back of my mind until then. I love your house and glad you could get outdoors for a while. We're at the other end of the weather spectrum here, definitely becoming Autumnal in the mornings. I can feel a deep depression coming on already!!

Lady Mondegreen's Secret Garden said...

Steve: Thank you :-)

Nana Go-Go: I love my house too, but I wish I had time to do more with the garden...
It is so hard, that distance between our two countries. We have many English friends here who have been joined by elderly parents; this brings joy, and peace of mind to both sides, but there is the cost of leaving a life time of other family and friends behind. I hope you can come out to visit your friend sometime.

Susan Heather said...

A very belated Happy Birthday to you. (I have been without my computer for most of the past week).

Thanks for sharing your happy day.

libby said...

Belated happy birthday Lady M...such wonderful pictures - I love that you had such smashing treats with your great girls....the posy is especially pretty and I think Elwin was there with you all in spirit.x

Lady Mondegreen's Secret Garden said...

Susan Heather: Thank you. I hope you are back to normal, computer-wise, and have some more great outings to blog about for us.

libby: Thank you. We've always done posies for each other on special occasions, even when the girls were little. I do appreciate having a spring birthday and people who make my day special :-)