Monday, July 27, 2020

The First Annual Garden Fete

Our Summer Garden Fete last weekend was a huge success. Lady Caroline, Mary Thomas and Lady Elizabeth worked tirelessly to ensure it was a day filled with fun for all. Rain early in the morning had everyone worried for a time but the sun prevailed and the day emerged beautiful and fresh for that bit of morning rain.

There were smiles all around as the villagers walked to the Comely Estate where the Fete was being held. Children could hardly wait to get there tugging their parents along when they stopped to say hello to their neighbours. There were friends from other villages come to share in the fun which made for a lovely community public day.

On entering the tent where the villagers showcased their prize fruits and vegetables along with their finest sewn items, paintings and all manner of things, one was presented with table upon table of offerings for the judges to consider. It seems most of the village had an item or two on show. The flowers were the most popular category with everyone stopping to smell the scents of the flowers and ask the name of this flower or that fern. The Judging Tent was of interest to all for there were so many delightful things to pause and admire.

Outside in the sunshine the stalls were many and varied with happy vendors calling everyone to inspect their wares. The merchant selling lady’s fans was popular on such a warm day; the confections stall was a magical display of sugar creations to tempt anyone. The representation of Comely Manor made of carefully moulded sugar garnered much attention. Wide-eyed children looked at the sweets and it was only the beginning of the games which tore them away from such sublime contemplation.

The men could be found gathered around the livestock making their own choices for best in show. Moss Turner’s sheep were much admired for their pristine fleeces while Old Mary stood proudly by her Daisy, pleased that so many thought her new donkey a handsome creature. There were many proud pet owners confident their pet was well-favoured by all. Children and adults alike stood smiling with their pets waiting for the judges to arrive.  There were rabbits, dogs, cats and even a ferret or two.

The games had everyone cheering and laughing. What fun it was to see all taking part in such joyous events. Many rosettes were awarded amid cheering. The egg and spoon race had the most participants causing the judge to keep up with the entrants in order to see who crossed over the finish line first. The lady’s were all smiles as they rushed to a table and threaded a needle before rushing back to their line to tag the next on their team. That was a very close race indeed as you know the ladies of Amberleigh are proficient stitchers.

When the sun became too hot the refreshment tent was the best place to recover. Alice Powell and her cousin Hetty Thorne were making cups of tea and coffee with haste. The cakes were admired and cut for eagerly awaiting patrons and the atmosphere inside was one of mirth for all were watching the two serving the tea to see who would take the most orders. There was much banter and at one point when the judges came in they were encouraged to time the cousins. Such fun and laughter ensued at that. Lady Caroline, Mary Thomas and Lady Elizabeth sat among the tea drinkers pleased their efforts had created such a happy day for the villagers.

Later in the afternoon the music and dancing began and to hear the sound of the fiddle picking out a merry tune was a treat for all. Dances were called and partners took their places bowing to one another. Reels had them keeping time with the fiddle while others tapped their feet along with the music as they watched the dancers. Alice Powell got the shock of her life when her brother William came up behind her and asked for the next dance. Thrilled to see her brother she hugged him tight chattering away to him and missing the dance entirely.

Our garden fete was surely a day to be remembered. Have a look at some of the entries that were on display in the judging tent.

Best Loaf of Bread Category

Marianne Sedgeway's Challah Bread 

Matilda Cooper's Rustic Loaf

Best Cake Category

Marianne Sedgeway's Strawberry Cheesecake Torte

Innes O'Cullein's Vodka and Ginger Fruit Cake

Best Pie Category

Miss Lavinia Rose Westcott's Rustic Pecan Tart

Phebe Knowles' Apple Cranberry Pie

Mrs Pym's Cherry Pie

Tallest Sunflower Category

Phebe Knowles' Sunflowers

Matilda Cooper's Sunflower

180 cm tall

Cleverest Paper Creation Category

Maria Medcalf's Garden Happiness Card


Matilda Copper's Marbled Paper Creation 

Prettiest Pet Category

Miss Lavinia Rose Westcott's Maltese Dog Baxter

Hester Hardisty's Cat Willie

Best Painted or Drawn image Category

Maria Medcalf's Summer Wildflowers painting

Hester Hardisty's watercolours

Phebe Knowles' Pen and Ink Drawings

Matilda Cooper's watercolour

Best sewn or embroidered item Category

Leandrea Wallis' ribbon embroidery

Patience Pembroke's Lap Quilt

Lady Caroline Farnswoth's Doll

Marianne Sedgeway's Dress

Lady Elizabeth's Work Bag

Old Mary's Sweet Dream Pillow

Matilda Cooper's Sewn Cutlery Bags

Prettiest Hat or Bonnet Category

Jenny Wren's Bonnet

Freyda Gildermann's Bonnet

Best Poetry about Summer Category

Maria Medcalf's Poem

Title: Golden Days

Dawn awakens with early rays
Shorter nights blanket skies with twinkling stars
Warm gold days

Garden seeds planted early May mornings
Berried to jam in mid July
Warm golden days

Front porch lemonades
Country air freedom
Warm golden days

Children's kites to chase
Sun skin-kissed cuddles
Warm golden days

Sunsets, lullabies, the Lord to praise
Fireflies waltz the evening breeze
Warm golden days

Memories of gathering baskets of bouquets
Blissful delight
Warm golden days


Old Mary's Poem

Title: Summer's Bonnie Face

The verdant field that greets me thus
Birds whose chatter fill the trees
Roses bursting forth their buds
Summer sings her songs to me.

Wistful breezes caress the flowers
The butterfly's poetic dance delights
Enchanting the air with its power,
to make one's imagination take flight.

Cottony clouds soften the sky
Elder flowers, delicate as lace
Summer, sweet summer, is surely nigh
Captivating me with her bonnie face. 


Becket Blackburn's Poem


A lofty Angel whispered in my ear
a secret message meant for you and me
that spoke a truth so perfect and so clear
about emotion that no eye can see
Not meaningless, nor rude, it did not sting
devoid of selfish motive, calm and kind
believing, yielding hoping everything
without this truth no meaning here we'll find
Enduring precious all else falls away
if only we can suffer to release
our childish thoughts and grow more every day
then here will be our pack and road to peace
That whispered message offered from above
was just a single word, the word was love

1 comment:

  1. Wow! What amazing talent there is in Amberleigh!! Thank you all for sharing your creations and photos. Everything is just splendid!


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