Friday, August 28, 2015

England, Day Eight

The day has come that we must leave my beloved Lake District. Yes, I'm claiming the Lake District MINE as my heart is there.  Coming to this area has been a dream for so long.  Dreams do come true!  We have seen and experienced more than we could ever imagine!  

We're not too sad, maybe, because we still have three more days to see more of this beautiful England.  We have our bags packed and are ready to pack the car bright and early as we have a long journey ahead of us today.  Even though it will be out of the way we are going to York.  I'm excited, so let's get going. 

The beautiful stone walls guide us on our journey to York.  We must go around a large mountain range.  The scenery thrills us, but the weather is quite overcast and storms are threatening.

As we descend down in elevation, the weather is improving.  Look--the roads are great--little traffic and shoulders on the A road!  Grayden is loving this drive!

I must show you one of the adorable phone booths that still dot some of the street corners in small towns.

Everywhere I look there is charm.  We are approaching York and I get a glimpse of the remains of the walled city!

The city or ‘bar’ walls of York are the most complete example of medieval city walls still standing in England today.  Beneath the medieval stonework lie the remains of earlier walls dating as far back as the Roman period.

We must find a car park in this busy city!  Luckily we make a left turn and there is one with an available spot.  Grayden pays at the pay station and we gather our belongings to go see York!

Walking through the ancient walls of York we see what we both came to York for!  The beautiful York Minster!

There is a service going on and we must return later to view the inside of this magnificent cathedral.
Just to the back of the Minster is the Treasurer's House.  Let's go over and see this lovely home.

We must walk around the side of the Minster down this curved sidewalk.

The National Trust has under its care this opulent home of Frank Green.  It was the first house that the National Trust received with all of its collections and furnishings intact.  The home sits on an ancient Roman road and its history spans over 2,000 years.  We must go inside for a look around!

Treasurer's House

There is a lovely bed of tulips blooming as we prepare to go in.

We enter through the door and are greeted by the lovely folks that tell us about this opulent, interesting place.  They direct us to the fireplace and then we continue on our self-guided tour.

The beauty of this home is reflected in all the lovely mouldings and furnishings.

Let's go upstairs and have a look around.

Let's look around the bedrooms.

This beautiful tapestry is in one of the bedrooms.

I love these beautiful oval portraits!

Let's go down into the basement to their tearoom and have some lunch before we go to see the York Minster!

What would you like?  They have Coronation Chicken Salad, so that's what I'm having!  After lunch we are going into a very special place of worship!  I can't wait to show you!  Enjoy your lunch and make sure you bring your jacket when we leave as it's quite windy outside! ♥

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Eleven is a big birthday for our grandson Miles.  Being the youngest grand he is always trying to catch up to his older brother.  Alex is only 17 months older, but in Miles' world that is enormous.

We celebrated his birthday at our home last Saturday.  There were decorations hung by the grands!  Our son, Grady, lets the boys decorate for parties and so when they had the party here, we let them do the decorating.

Miles is like the rest of us and enjoys everything that has to do with the ocean.  So we went all out at the Dollar Tree and bought ocean themed table cloth, napkins, plates, and we even served crab legs--Miles' favorite!

Samuel and Alex climbed the ladder and attached streamers to the fan and the crown moulding.  It was fun watching them handle everything!

When Grady was a Cub Scout he and his Dad made a giant Ho Ho cake for a father son bake-off.  They won first place all those years ago.  Miles had heard about this and wanted a giant Ho Ho cake for his birthday.  So we (the boys and I) made the cake for the celebration.

These two guys don't like crab legs, so they enjoyed pasta for their meal.

Miles enjoyed his day and is happy to be ELEVEN!

Friday, August 21, 2015

August Changes

August has been a very hot and humid month in our corner of the world.  June and July were the wettest months in summer for all the years I can remember.  August is just the opposite.  We've had very little rain.  I'm so thankful as I write this, that it is raining now.  Not much is expected, but I'm happy for all we will receive.

In spite of all the heat and humidity and lack of rain there has been much to observe in the garden.  The butterflies have been flocking to the buddleia.  There is so much joy watching nature all around us.

"There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells us it's going to be a butterfly."  Fuller

Black Swallowtail

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

 Female Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

Red Admiral Butterfly

Fritillary Butterfly

The flowers have grown so much this month.  As much as I don't like the oppressive heat, the flowers love it.  They do if I continue to give them supplemental water.  Pot bound plants now need more water than usual.

The patio impatiens, that were planted from seed, are now filling in nicely.

This little hummingbird comes to call on the geranium blooms.

We've watched this little fellow grow up this summer!

We've always been worried about our bunny and this fellow.  Nature can be quite harsh!

Red-shouldered Hawk

Our backyard bunny is now larger and hopefully will not be seen as dinner for this bad boy.  He was overlooking this bed of rudbeckia goldstrum.

Summer is slowly leaving us and another season will be coming soon.  The angle of the sun is quite different as it shines through our windows.  Samuel began school this week and  Alex and Miles will be starting another year of school after Labor Day.

The swings are waiting for another visit.  Meanwhile the spiders are taking up residence and Autumn is not far behind.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

England, Day Seven, Part Two

After leaving the Wordsworth home we are travelling through beautiful countryside to visit Dalton Castle.  It's a lovely drive along the coastline looking at the Irish Sea.

After travelling for some time we come to Dalton-in-Furness in Cumbria.  It's a steep little village town, filled with charming homes.  At the top of one of the hills is the Dalton Castle.  It was built to defend the people of Dalton and the approaches to Furness Abbey.  It's not a typical castle.  In 1127 King Stephen conferred on the Abbot of Furness the power to hold courts and administer justice as early as 1239 there is reference to a jury in the agreement between William Flemming of Aldingham and the Abbey.

Inside of the tower we are greeted by two lovely ladies who guided us around the Tower.  The deep set windows are quite lovely with their leaded glass.

Since this tower was used as a court and a prison there is a dungeon in the lower level.  In 1704 the floor boards were replaced and then again in 1856.  After the National Trust aquired the castle from the Duke of Buccleuch, the castle was further restored in 1968.

Of course there has to be a toilet in the castle.  Down this narrow passage we come to a dead end.  This has been recently excavated and to be, what has been delicately termed, "the rubbish shaft."

These were the stairs we climbed to the second floor.

Upstairs there is a large room that would have served as the courtroom.  This room is used as a teaching tool for National Trust exhibits.

George Romney the English Painter born in Dalton-in-Furness

Dalton Castle was an interesting quirky place.  Back downstairs, the ladies showed us local artifacts.  Local citizens bring in objects to display in this area.  It's kind of a little museum for odd items.

My friend Deb at , from Wales, wrote about her stoneware hot water bottle.  I found it so interesting to see so many different shapes on display.

The ladies recommended  we visit The Furness Abbey while in town.  So with their directions we were off to see the Abbey ruins.

Furness Abbey was one of the richest Cistercian monasteries in England.  The ruins of red sandstone sits in the area it has been for over 900 years.  The remains once housed the wealthy order.  It was founded by Count Stephen of Boulogne c. 1125.  Count Stephen was later King Stephen.

The Abbey was destroyed in 1537 during the English Reformation under the order of Henry VIII.

The Furness Abbey is under the care of the English Heritage.  Much of the foundation is sinking into the ground.  They are working to try to shore up the remains for the future.

It was time for us to leave this area.  We travelled over many narrow roads filled with interesting sights.  We were surprised to see what appeared to be a lighthouse on a hill.

Upon further investigation, we learned this was a monument and not a lighthouse.  The monument was built in 1850 in honor of Sir John Barrow, a local explorer.  It is a replica of Eddystone Lighthouse and stands 100 feet tall on top of the 430 foot high Hoad Hill.  It was built of local limestone.  It is locally known as the pepperpot.

Continuing along to our destination we wanted to see Morecambe Bay.  I've mentioned we love the sea and wanted to see this body of water from a different angle.

We walked out to the water front and reflected on all the beauty we have experienced so far on our lovely adventure to England.  What a beautiful day!