"If - on an Autumn or early Winter's night - you quietly opened the heavy, oaken door leading to a Still Room such as our own within the Ypres Tower, you would immediately smell that special scent of the season shortly to unfold, for this would be the magical, mysterious space where garden linked with house or castle to provide all manner of seasonal treats, as well as the more usual healing lotions and ointments regularly prepared within it's walls.
Honey-rich syrups were made by infusing herbs previously bruised in a mortar and pestle or by making a strong decoction - both methods requiring heating to reduce the liquid, then strained through muslin and honey added to sweeten. Colds and sore throats were often relieved by a rose-hip and lemon balm decoction with honey added to soothe and heal."
"Since the advent of e-mail, which is universally faster (barring some extreme technical glitch, computer virus or the like), the postal system has come to be referred to in internet slang by the retronym "snail mail".
Modern alternatives such as the telegraph, telephone, telex, facsimile, and e-mail (not to mention text messaging!) have reduced the attractiveness of paper mail for many applications. These modern alternatives have some advantages: in addition to their speed, they may be more secure, e.g. because strangers cannot learn the sender's address from the envelope, and occasionally traditional items of mail may fail to arrive, e.g. due to vandalism to mailboxes, unfriendly pets and adverse weather conditions."
'I don't know--I don't want to talk as much,' she said, denting her chin thoughtfully with her forefinger. 'It's nicer to think dear, pretty thoughts and keep them in one's heart, like treasures. I don't like to have them laughed at or wondered over. And somehow I don't want to use big words any more. It's almost a pity, isn't it, now that I'm really growing big enough to say them if I did want to. It's fun to be almost grown up in some ways, but it's not the kind of fun I expected, Marilla. There's so much to learn and do and think that there isn't time for big words.'
Ahhhh...nothing like a cup of Strawberry/Rose-infused White Tea in the summer. Still tea, but lighter, refreshing...lovely with wildflower honey. While Sister Mouse is our tea expert around here, we know that all of you don't have the esteemed privilege of being able to sit down and have a chat with her about proper brewing techniques. In light of this fact, she had Mrs. Mouse do some research and found a wonderful spot that is quite educational and enjoyable. She found this chart and Sister Mouse said "Yes!, please pass that on to ButtonWillow visitors. Why, tea shouldn't even be drunk if one doesn't brew it properly!"
So lest we all insult her sensitive demeanor as far as teas of the world are concerned here you go;
And be sure to stop by the lovely spot where she found it. There is much to read, enjoy, peruse and shop for.
These late summer days are still taken advantage of amongst the Small Dwellers. Lazy strolls and light harvesting are the norm.
Mrs. Rabbit's Sister likes to take advantage of the warm air and soft breezes to get at least some of her brood out of the house for a bit, in particular her youngest son. He can be a rambunctious and itchy little bunny. She knows that all too soon he wont be quite so jolly when he's confined in their teensy burrow with his eight older sisters and four older brothers doing his schoolwork. His only younger sister here is easy prey for most of his moody shenanigans, poor thing... But, the fresh air seems to bring out the best in him, so all is lovely for now.
...personally, we think it best that their Mother dry these posies so that his little sister can recall his kindness on one of those days when he's not so cheery and decides to dunk her cottontail into the nearest glue pot.
Rose petals, lemon balm lemon verbena, fragrant geranium leaves and fragrant mint (along with citrus peel as pictured or vanilla pods and cinnamon sticks) can all lend their flavor to sugar which can then be used to enhance the taste of fruit salads, drinks, teas, icings and baked desserts.
Simply made as follows:
1/4 cup fresh leaves or a tablespoon of citrus peels (pith removed)
1 cup superfine sugar
Wash and dry the leaves carefully. In a storage container alternate layers of sugar and leaves or rind. Cap tightly and leave for two or three weeks. Strain out the dry leaves. Make sure to label your jars so you know what you have created!
Adare in Irish is Ath Dara meaning "ford of the oak". It is known as one of Ireland's prettiest villages. It is in County Limerick.
The ancient town lay upon the eastern bank of the Maigue near a ford (crossing point) in the region known as Ardshanbally ('high ground of the old town'), about half-a mile from the modern town on the western side. Historically a market town, in the Middle Ages, Adare was a major settlement and boasted three monateries and a castle.
It is a tourist destination and a popular wedding and convention destination, so don't expect idyllic peace and quiet. But, because of it's popularity there is much to see and do.