Jam and a Violin

 I spent a wonderful day catching up with a friend at her home recently.  Not only did I have the pleasure of listening to her play the violin, while watching her 'Charlie' dog sing along.  But we also had a lovely chat about gardens, jam and some beautiful people that leave us with lasting memories.

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This is my first visit to Mimi's home - she's been coming into my shop for a long time, and from that, a lovely friendship has grown. 

STOP!!......On arrival I just have to jump out the car and take a picture.  I can't help myself when I see something that makes my heart skip a beat.....I just have to capture it!   (this habit is usually quite annoying to everyone else in the car, especially if they're doing the driving)

But have a look at this!  I think I've fallen in love with this property already!   When can I move in?!

The welcoming party!

Mimi and her husband have been living here, in their 1800's home, for the past 9 years.  With its convict built homestead and 5 acres of garden, it's hard not to go weak at the knees and swoon.  Surrounding the homestead are many more gorgeous acres, its history everywhere to be seen.

Mimi invites me in for a cup of tea, but before I get anywhere I notice the Lavender drying on the front porch.  Mimi explains that before moving to Tasmania she use to run a lavender business on King Island, and that she supplied a number of businesses with her lavender products. 

Lavender is now just an enjoyable past time for Mimi, making wonderful gifts for family and friends. She's currently planning to plant some gorgeous Egerton Blue in her garden.

Around the back, in the courtyard, sits a basket full of greengage plums, patiently waiting for Mimi to stew and freeze them.  A gift from her neighbour that will be a treat for her and her husband for months to come.

Sitting down to a cup of tea and taste testing some of Mimi's Quince Jelly is a job I don't mind doing. Mimi shows me a lovely journal she kept during the time she ran her lavender business.  It was very interesting to hear all the things she did with her lavender.

Recipe - Mimi's Orange & Lemon Marmalade Jam

2 x oranges
1 x lemon
sugar
water

Making around 3 - 4 jars of marmalade start by cutting oranges and lemon into eighth's, removing the pulp and cut the rind into thin strips - removing pips as you go.  At this point it's a good idea to measure your fruit in cup size so you know how much sugar to use later.  Place all the fruit into a bowl, cover with water (about 4 cups) and soak overnight.

Next day pop the mixture into a pan and simmer for 1 hour on a medium heat.  Add sugar, keeping to the ratio of 1 cup of fruit to 1 cup sugar. Cook for another 20 mins.

Pour into clean, heated jars and seal immediately.

Introducing Charlie the singing dog!  Available for weddings, parties........anything!   

The first job Mimi & her husband did when they came to this property, was build this dry stone wall. The late John Wilson, a well known and loved person in this area,  worked alongside Sticks and Stones, the talented team of James Boxhall & Andrew Garner, to create this beautiful wall that frames this amazing property.  It is to be noted that Mimi's husband, Neil, was their apprentice during the build, and between them all, they create this! 

As we walked around the rest of the garden, Mimi talked about the other lovely things that John Wilson left behind....like this spade in the garden bed....the eternal gardener.

The next few pictures are just a glimpse of what was a lovely walk and talk around this beautiful garden.

This has been so enjoyable and relaxing.  Gardens have always had this effect on me.....just makes me realise that I should spend more time in my own.

Thank you Mimi, and the talented Charlie dog, for showing me around your home.  So exhausted from the excitement, Charlie, like any star of the show, returns to her dressing room.

I couldn't resist a black and white picture to finish off on.  Isn't she beautiful?!

Beautiful girl xxx

Beautiful girl xxx

Bless x Julie