Sunday, 22 July 2012

Vintage Tea Party


All Set Up and Looking Pretty

On Friday we held a vintage tea party at our house to raise funds towards the Blooming Great Tea Party campaign for Marie Curie Cancer Care and it was FABULOUS! The idea was the brain child of my daughter-in-law Lynsey Glover who hires out her vintage crockery under the name of The Whistling Bunting. She has organised several charity events but has previously had to hire a venue so this time my daughter, also called Lynsey, and I said that we would host the next event at my house.

 The Two Lynseys Ready for a Busy Afternoon
My best friend Alison is an amazing cook, as is my daughter, and so they set about baking cup cakes, lemon drizzle cakes, carrot muffins, banoffee cakes, raspberry and white chocolate cakes and a whole lot more including a huge fresh cream strawberry sponge. My sister was in charge of scones that included date and walnut, cheese, fruit varieties and of course the ever popular plain ones served with lashings of cream and topped with a strawberry.My contribution was a batch of Rocky Road as I'm not much of a cook but I did make the 4 of us matching aprons so we looked the part.

Four Aprons Complete and Ready for the Big Event
The Guests Arrive
Alison and my Grandkids, Martha and Lucas

    Lots of Chatting Inside......

......and Outside
The Kids Enjoy Playing in the Garden
About 30 friends, relatives and neighbours turned up, some baring more lovely food, and, as we were blessed with a lovely sunny afternoon, people spilled out into the garden, which we had bedecked with bunting, to enjoy the lovely weather.
It was great to see everyone chatting and enjoying themselves while having a nice cup of tea from a china cup and lush cakes displayed on vintage cake stands.

Still Looking Chilled After About 100 Cups had been Poured!

It was a fabulous way to spend a Friday afternoon and we raised £241 for a worthy cause at the same time.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Amsterdam - Day 3

I have been able to return quite unexpectedly to my blog today as I thought I would be fully tied up with 2 lovely, but boisterous, grandchildren aged 1and 3 years old who have moved in while mum and dad go off with friends to see the Stone Roses in Manchester. Fortunately "Uncle Matthew" has paid us a visit and, along with grandad, they have gone off to see the owls at Kirkleatham Old Hall.

Well on our last day we decided to revisit the Van Gogh Museum that we had last visited nearly 40 years ago. Since it was just around the corner from our hotel we knew that we had plenty of time to take in a few more sites and this time we chose to do it by way of a canal cruise. The first leg of the journey we sailed the canals that we had walked along on our first day passing under the now familiar bridges.

A new view point from which to admire the bridges

Wester Kerk
It also meant that we got to see many of the houseboats that line the canals.

Houseboats moored along the canals
 It was a very liesurely way to get to see the port area that we didn't manage on foot.

The harbour area north of Central Station including the
EYE Film Institute, Science Centre NEMO and The National
Maritime Museum

On returning from our trip with the Blue Boat Company we enjoyed a spot of lunch in the open space near the Rijkmuseum before setting off to "what no visit to Amsterdam is complete without" i.e. the Van Gogh Museum.
It dawned on us that when we first visited this museum it couldn't have been open for very long as it was built in 1973 and we went on a camping holiday to Holland around that time and one of the highlights was visiting it. We were not disappointed this time either as the route through allowed you to follow the short (he was only an artist from 1880 - 1890) but very productive (800 paintings, 1000 drawings and a large number of watercolours,lithographs and sketches) career.
What also helped set every thing in context was the many letters to his brother Theo and some of his friends, including Paul Gaugin, which you can read here.
Van Gogh was largely self-taught with only a few classes at academies in Brussels and Anterp and as a result he developed a very unique style. I hope that the images of his work, which represent the different phases of his working life, inspire you as they have many artists over the years.

Early Work To 1886

Pollard Birches
Potato Eaters

Paris 1886-1888

Portrait of Theo
Small Pear Tree

                                                           Arles 1888-1889 


                                                    Saint-Remy 1889-1890 

The Garden at St Paul's Hospital


Auvers 1890

View of Auvers

Wheatfields with Crows

 Well the family did return quicker than I could complete this little blog post but from the photos below you can see that they had a good time.