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Pink Trees and Cherry Tea!

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Happy Spring,

Dear Friends!

Today, I am steeping one of my favourite teas – Kyoto Cherry Rose scented with natural cherry and rose flavours.  It is pale yellow in colour with a heavenly aroma and sweet taste.

Would you like a cuppa in my prized vintage China pattern? “Apple Blossom” is a stunning profusion of pink-petaled apple trees.  I LOVE this pattern!  I found it when I wasn’t looking at a roadside antiques barn while vacationing on Prince Edward Island a few summers ago! It was such a thrilling and unexpected find. Isn’t that always the way! I think I must have danced right out the door with my newspaper-wrapped bundles of joy! I hope one day to stumble across a matching teapot to complete the set.  I will just have to keep on treasure hunting…

I LOVE this pattern’s history in that it was insightfully commissioned in the early 1960’s by the Chair of Nova Scotia’s Apple Blossom Festival, then in just its second year. This enduring pattern is an artist’s rendition of springtime in Annapolis Valley when the apple blossoms are exploding all over the countryside. All these years later, the festival remains a much-loved annual tradition there.

I LOVE, too, pink-flowering trees! But you probably could have guessed that already? Each spring, I make a special pilgrimage to a particular street in the heart of our city that is lined with gracious century-old homes on handsome, mature lots.  One home on the street stands out from the rest.  Along its perimeter marches a legion of stately Japanese Cherry trees.  Their entangled branches, thickly laden with exquisite fluffy pink blooms, reach way out over the hefty black fence that rings the property, and bend down to the street like low-hanging frothy clouds of cotton candy!  Delicious, pure pink abundance!  My feet and heart always dance together at the sight.  It makes my day every time!

P1070224Wherever these frothy pink specimens grow in abundance, there is an intense ‘Bloom Watch’ and visitors queue by the hundreds to see the magic of the cherry trees unfurl in a fleeting spectacular show of renewal. Their pink vapour of nature’s perfection fill the landscapes with intense beauty, wonderment and emotion.

To the Japanese, the fallen petals of the cherry blossom symbolize a soldier who has died in battle long before his time. But Spring blooms also represent strength, rebirth and hope for the future…

Audrey Hepburn said, “To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow!” She was so right about that. To plant pink trees is to beautify our communities and to help grow a future without breast cancer…I believe! The seeds of Pink Days In Bloom’s “The Pink Tree Project” in support of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation-Atlantic Region are just beginning to be sowed…

Those of you who have been following my blog for some time already may know that I am a breast cancer “Thriver” and that when I was on medical leave a few years ago recovering from treatments, I decided to combine my love of gardening with the overwhelming need to do something, anything, to help fight this disease in some way…

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0001GpHere are several links to some of the articles about Pink Days In Bloom in support of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation-Atlantic Region that appeared in our local newspaper last year. It’s a bit of a story and I think these next few articles probably best summarize how the seed was first planted and how it has continued to grow and flourish with the support of an amazing group of like-minded, dedicated volunteers and a caring business community:
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PHOTO:  Pink Days In Bloom’s Signature Garden Faeries ‘Hope’ and ‘Invincibelle’ with O’Brien’s Boat Tours‘ mermaid mascot, Miss Shell, during ‘Pink Days In Bloom On the Sea!’ in the Town of Bay Bulls last summer…
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The Empress Hotel’s world- famous Tea Lobby is a glorious place to enjoy a spot of tea!  You can see some photos of this grand lady in my previous post, THE ELEGANT EMPRESS.
During “Pink Tree Day in the Park” and “Tea Sea-to-Sea” on June 8, at the same hour that we will be planting a pink-flowering tree in Bowring Park, one of our city’s most cherished parks, here St. John’s, Newfoundland on Canada’s East Coast, our dear friends at The Fairmont Empress Hotel in Victoria, British Columbia on the Country’s West Coast will also plant a pink “sister” tree on their hotel grounds.
And, while we are celebrating and FUNdRaising over tea and champagne at The Bungalow, The Empress team will host a Pink Days In Bloom Tea of their own and “Sip in Support”. Isn’t that AWESOME!  
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On June 8th, you, too, can pick up your cup in support, whether on your iPad, in the office, at the kitchen table, by the pool or wherever you happen to be via a Virtual Tea!  I would love it if you could join us. Simply brew your favourite cuppa and click:  cbcf.org/GetInvolved/Donate.  Ask your family, friends and co-workers to join in, too. It’s that easy!
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For TWITTER LOVERS:  On June 8th, Tweet about your tea experience at #PinkDaysInBloom and your Tweets can be seen by guests of The Empress on a screen near their world-famous Tea Lobby, bringing us all even closer together in ‘growing’ a future without breast cancer!
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I am so excited about this next beautiful event! THANK YOU to our dear friends at The Empress for sharing in the cause! Please show them your LOVE! ‘Like’ The Empress on Facebook. Or, visit them at Fairmont.com/Empress-Victoria to discover their fabulous get-away packages and legendary afternoon teas…If you haven’t visited The Empress and Victoria yet, it’s a must to add to your bucket list!
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Read all about this exciting and meaningful event below! I hope it will help explain why I have been away from my blog these past few months!
I have met so many beautiful people on this journey. Thank you Proven Winners for the ‘Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangea’ – a tough plant that is working hard to find a cure, to all the committed volunteers and amazing supporters.  Without you, it would not be possible.  It means so very much to me and so many others. XO  I hope you will join us wherever you are on June 8th for pink trees and cherry tea and for HOPE, AWARENESS AND SUPPORT!
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I hope you enjoy the photos of pretty china and the pink tree cookies made by my sweet friend Maria of Petite Sweet! Thank you so much for taking precious time out of your day to visit with me. Please leave your beautiful footprint to let me know that yo were here, and so I can visit you in return!  XO
Wishing you a beautiful day and Happy Mother’s Day weekend,

Linda

 Please ‘Like’ Pink Days In Bloom on Facebook.

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P1070144P1070147P1070151P1070163P1070153A true warrior, like tea, shows his strength in hot water. – Ancient Chinese proverb

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Hope yours is a blue-sky kind of day…

I’m happy to be sharing today in honour of Mother’s Day at Inspiration Monday, Make It Pretty Monday, Tea Time Tuesday, Return to LovelinessMartha’s Favourite, The Scoop, Inspire Me Tuesday, Nifty Thrifty Tuesday, Do Tell Tuesday, What’s It Wednesday, Wordless Wednesday, Wake UpWednesdayWhat We Accomplished Wednesday, Before and After WednesdayHope in Every SeasonCottage Style Party, Home and Garden Thursday, Share Your Cup Thursday, Simple and Sweet FridayFeathered Nest Friday,  Show and Tell Friday, Fabulously Creative Friday, Shabbilicious Friday, Saturday Show OffWhat To Do WeekendsPink SaturdayThe Charm of Home, Bouquet of Talent!

The Tangled Garden

Inside the gift shop at Tangled Garden...Herbs and flowers are drying overhead. You can taste sample the many wonderful products before you buy. It is a beautiful, creative place! See the studio photos at the end of this post...

Greetings, All!

Welcome to my tea table today.  The brew is steeping and the teacups are waiting for you. I’ve added a few special treats to our table this afternoon, some very special jams and jellies that I think you are going to like…

Grand Pres in the heart of Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia holds an intriguing garden grown primarily for its herbs that are transformed into flavoured jams and jellies, oils and vinegars, chutneys and salsas, mustards, liqueurs and honey. Only the freshest fruit from nearby farms and orchards and wine from local wineries are used to make Tangled Garden’s tasty gourmet treats.

Their luscious jellies, for example, are made in small batches by hand – just six jars at a time. You can taste the quality in each product.  You can sense the care that goes into each glorious, glistening jar of pride.

Jars of herb-infused treats sit on a twig shelf in the Tangled Garden...

I love the way sprigs of their homegrown herbs look when suspended inside the clear, vibrant-coloured jellies and oils. And, did I mention the beautifully shaped jars and bottles that hold these delights?! When sat on a windowsill catching sunbeams, the elixir-filled bottles resemble radiant jewels sparkling in the sunlight…

Perfect for gift giving, the potions come in tidy and sophisticated handcrafted wooden crates. Oil and vinegar duos are beautifully presented in unique bottles on a cruet tray. There are boxes with handles, tiny chests with brass hinges made especially for single jars, and then there are the jelly trees! You can choose the flavours you’d like included in your gift crate.

The liquers are so special made from fruits and herbs steeped to produce wonderful-tasting concoctions that can be drizzled over ice cream, sponge cake, fresh fruit… Or, serve chilled to just sip slowly, or mixed with sparkling water, white wine or champagne…The possibilities are endless.

With delicious-sounding names like Peach and Rhubard Angelica, Radiant Raspberry, Cherry Anise Hyssop, Verbena Blue, Orange Chive, Tarragon Wine, Currant Thyme, Apple Sage, Lemon Rosemary….I simply could not resist purchasing an assortment to bring home with me.

Oh, Jelly Tree! Oh, Jelly Tree!

Whenever we travel to Nova Scotia, we visit Tangled Garden. For many years, the owners were regulars at our major Christmas craft fairs here in Newfoundland.  You can see them at the Halifax Forum for Christmas at the Forum on November 4th, 5th and 6th.

If you’d like to know more about these delicious and stylish products, check out their website at Tangled Garden.

There is always much to see at the Tangled Garden that is new and exciting. When we there in August, it was the first time in many years since we had visited, and we could see a tremendous change and growth in the garden. There are so many more sculptures and specialty gardens, even herb ice cream, and a lily pond with turtles!

I snapped these photos during our time spent there.  I hope you enjoy them. Maybe you’ll be inspired to grow your own tangled garden…

Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope to see you again soon!

When baking, follow directions.  When cooking, go by your own taste.  ~Laiko Bahrs

Beautiful window view!

A Tangled Garden Tour…

We're at the entrance to the Tangled Garden. There's lots to see. Be sure to bring your camera!

Didn't I tell you how beautiful the bottles were?! Who wouldn't love to receive one of these tasty treasures?!

There's an amazing variety of homegrown gifts to choose from in the giftshop.

Don't you love how they glisten in the sunlight?! The garden is open so let's go for a stroll, shall we? Notice the wisteria in the photo below - it needs a strong support!

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