Friday, 14 June 2013


I know.....
I've been away a long time

I have been visiting...
but just a little!

On my last post I promised a giveaway
to celebrate my first year
of blogging

I've had this ready since then but..
where does the time go???

A few weeks ago
I was in the Midlands visiting my mother

By the way (as an aside)
for those of you who have been longing to know
The surprise trip 
my brother took Mum on for her 921/2 birthday
Drum roll

St Petersburgh, Russia!!

How about that then??!!

to get on with this story

Mum and I decided to visit
Charlecote Park
The first picture is of the Gatehouse
and the second as we walked through the Gatehouse and could see the house at the end of the drive

Apart from the beautiful, manicured gardens....
There were lots of little corners with statues

and parkland with deer

and a lovely knot garden

The inside of the house is well worth visiting
but we've been there so many times
that we decided to give it a miss
this time!

One really beautiful gem is....

the children's play house

There used to be
chairs and tables and beautiful little china
on the inside but....

this time it was empty..
but so pretty...don't you think??

The door looks so interesting....

The Gatehouse through the trees

and the house

so we head to the Gatehouse...
and home!

The family church through the trees

I thought you might be interested 
in this beautiful home 
but I also had a reason 
for walking you around the grounds

My Giveawy
(at last I hear you murmur!!)

 A selection of different things.... 
....that I thought you might like!!

I loved this little cross-stitch kit
for a book mark

and this collection of
National Trust notecards....
'Idyllic Locations'

and this tea towel that I also purchased from the National Trust
It has Wild Flowers of Wales...
though, unfortunately, not the Welsh names

perhaps I'll see if I can find more tea towels with Welsh names and have another giveaway later"

What do you think?

and now....
the reason I took you through Charlecote....

I bought this book years ago....
and while the author was still alive and living in the Park!!

It was so interesting and eye opening 
about the way people lived in
'fashionable 19th Century society'
When I saw it in the shop I had to buy it...because...

....I loved it and hope whoever wins it
does as well....


.....I will put the names of those who are my followers, and would like to be entered, 
into my husband's bowler hat
on Sun 23rd June
and get him to chose the winner

If you would like to be entered twice please mention my giveaway on your blog and, of course,
let me know!!

I hope these few gifts look as good to you as
the joy I had in buying them....


  1. Hello Joan,
    Russia! St.Petersburg....oh! my....what a fantastic surprise trip. I bet your mother was flabbergasted! I like the sound of your brother he certainly knows how to do things well LOL!

    I am struggling to keep up with blogging too but I enjoy it so much that I cannot even contemplate not doing it. I find time some now while there is something simmering on the cooker. :-)
    Visiting mansions and like is so much my cup of tea. This place looks wonderful and the dolls house is fabulous....what a dolls house!
    Please enter me for your very generous giveaway that book looks very interesting. I'm off to post a picture of it on my blog now linking it to this your giveaway post.

    keep well

    Amanda :-)

  2. Oh how beautiful the estate is. I actually was born and grew up in the West Midlands,but now live in Australia. It has lots of memories for me when I visit my childhood home in blogland. I love watching Dowton Abbey,the lovely way they lived in those days,,taking tea and dressing for dinner,ahhhhh. You live in a beautiful part of the world too. Thank you for sharing. It sounds like your mother is amazing for her age and enjoyed her trip. Have a nice day :)jeanette

  3. Amazing knot gardens! And - that children's play house - just too darling! I'd love to visit those grounds!

    Really nice giveaway, too. I'll mention you on my blog, and let you know in another comment.

    Enjoy this Friday and the week-end ahead!

  4. Such a beautiful place! I am pretty sure I could live in the children's playhouse. ;) It is adorable. The knots garden really is so lovely. So much work and talent.

    Glad to see you back. Thank you for this grand tour and your great, generous giveaway.

    Everything is so different over there. Where ya'll are is damp and lush, and us in Texas, we are so dry and hot. I would love to know your flowers and see the gardens in Wales. By the way, I love to read your post about what you see in your area on your walks. Have a great weekend...

  6. Giveaways are so much fun and you are so thoughtful and generous! I will cross my fingers. The gardens are absolutely gorgeous!!!! And the sweet little child's house, wonder why it was empty? It looks a bit like a fairy house. RUSSIA, an amazing birthday present!!!

  7. Such a sweet and thoughtful giveaway, Joan. Congratulations on your blogaversary! I am so glad to know you.

  8. It is always worth the wait for your posts. You take us to the most interesting places.
    Such lovely items in your giveaway. Since I have already been the benefactor of beautiful Welsh gifts from you (my 'heart and luck spoon' still hangs proudly over the stove),I think someone else should win this giveaway. I will however, be on the lookout for the book you recommend.

  9. Hooray for a lovely give away, count me in!

  10. Such a beautiful tour, Joan and so interesting to find the book about the mistress of the house! The little playhouse is so dear. Congratulations on your blog anniversary and glad you are back to blogging again! I would love to be part of your generous giveaway and thank you for entering me. Hope you have a lovely weekend, Joan! Oh, how wonderful of your brother to take your Mother on such an amazing trip! xoxo

  11. How sweet of you! You chose things that we all love...but me especially! heehee! Love that sweet playhouse. What a neat place. Enjoy your weekend my friend! Hugs!

  12. Welcome back! Sounds like a great trip. What beautiful gardens.

  13. What a lovely giveaway! I'm so glad you had time to get away with your mum and what a getaway!! Thank you for sharing it xox

  14. Oh Joan this trip with your Mum was special I love the gardens and all the buildings especially the playhouse I would love to play there:). I cannot believe she is going to Russia what an incredible opportunity I have no doubt she is excited.
    I am so glad you are out and about and enjoying your life. Your giveaway gifts are lovely and would love to be thrown in the hat. Thank you. Take care and keep enjoying your outings. Hug B

  15. Joan, just lovely. Great giveaway. I won't ask you to put me in for it though because it would cost you too much to send the book all the way to NZ. I do have a sister in London though so if that would be ok you could enter me for it. cheers

  16. Such wonderful visual places you take us to. And your brother taking your mum to Russia . . . she must have a wealth of memories . . .happy you have been out and about Miss Pembrokeshire . . .

  17. What a beautiful glimpse into your trip. Thank you for sharing it today. Take care.

  18. Goodness sakes, I enjoyed visiting that lovely home and grounds with you. Please count me in on the giveaway.. I'd love a bit of ol' blighty in my home! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  19. Enjoyed taking this trip with you, Joan, without having to leave my home. Hope your mom enjoyed her birthday treat too. And, how nice of you to have a giveaway.

  20. Ah, beautiful maintained garden and estate,. very impressing. And kind of Hobbit houses! Your mother, travelling to St. Petersburg, what a lucky girl. Did she have a good time? Groetjes, Gerda

  21. Joan, what a wonderful giveaway! Do please put my name in the hat. :) That book looks fascinating, and the tea towel is lovely. I would enjoy comparing your wildflowers with ours.

    What a beautiful place is Charlecote Park. I just came across a reference to it recently - though now I can't remember where (a Miss Read book I think) - so it's wonderful to see your photos.

    And what an exciting trip for your Mum! I hope she enjoyed every minute.

    Hope you are feeling well and enjoying your summer. :)

  22. I have that book - it's wonderful isn't it - so please don't worry about entering me in the giveaway, I just wanted to say congrats on the year and wow re. your Mums travels ... I do hope I'm up for foreign adventures at her age :)

  23. I LOVE Charlecote - I used to live near there (Kenilworth) and visit regularly. I also have that book (so don't include me in the giveaway)and found it bitter-sweet.



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