Orchard County

As many of you already know I live in County Armagh which due to it’s acres of orchards is also known as the Orchard County. It’s the apple harvest at the moment and by all accounts it’s a good one this year with a large crop of apples.

Many of the local churches hold their Harvest Festivals at this time of year and of course in this area apples form many of the displays!

The photo above was taken outside my local fruit and veg shop at the weekend, all the apples for sale are grown locally.

We brought these home with us and this box of apples ( there’s two missing, we couldn’t wait ) cost £1.50, not bad when you consider how many you get. Now they’re not all the same shape and size like the perfectly formed ones you get in the big supermarkets but unlike the supermarket models they do have the most wonderful taste !

It’s not just eating apples either there’s cooking apples aplenty. These lovely Bramley apples became……….

……….this apple tart which went down nicely with custard after lunch yesterday!! 🙂

One of my favourite things as I think I’ve mentioned before in a previous post are toffee apples, I just adore them. I do eat more than one a week (that’s all I’m admitting to anyway) ! Well they do say ” an apple a day keeps the doctor away “, it doesn’t say they can’t be covered in toffee!!! 😉

All these apples have inspired me to knit some as well !

Now in celebration of the apple harvest I thought I would have a little giveaway so I made an ‘apple colours’ inspired corsage! When out shopping at the weekend I bought this little candle which has the scent of Caramel Apples (oh yum!). So if you would like the corsage and candle all you have to do is leave a comment on this post!
As you know I always like to personally answer all your comments but as this is a giveaway post I’m going to thank you in advance so I don’t mess up the numbers. The fact that you take the time to stop by here, read my ramblings and then leave a comment is sooooo appreciated, so thank you !!!
The giveaway closes on Thursday 14th October at midnight (British Summer Time, which is coming to an end, sniff !)
I’ll be back on Friday with the name of the winner.

In the meantime from a very sunny and warm Orchard County have a good week ! 🙂

………………………………..Thank you, the giveaway is now closed!………………………………

My Park

I thought today I would take you for a walk through my park! Well it’s not just my park I do have to share with the rest of population of the town and surrounding areas. This is a place that we use a lot, during the summer we are in here almost every day of the week and the weather would have to be absolutely horrendous for us not to be here on a Sunday afternoon! I love it! 🙂

It is the second largest park on the island of Ireland the only one bigger is Phoenix Park in Dublin not bad for a provencial town. It is widely used by many sports, it has football, rugby and cricket pitches, tennis courts and an outdoor bowling green. It is used for many events including motor rallies, concerts, firework displays and agricultural shows and it has a very modern childrens play area.

What I love it for is it’s lovely woodland and beautiful and very old trees and of course it’s wildlife which includes squirrels, rabbits and foxes and a great variety of birds and water fowl.

It has many paths and trails through the trees and I have walked them all many, many times.

Just look at this ancient bark, it would make a lovely knitting pattern if you could work it out!

It has a huge lake which is used by many birds including swans, geese, many breeds of duck, water hens, coots and grebes.

The big building you can see in the photographs is Brownlow House or as it is known locally ‘the castle’.

Many, many years ago the park was actually the grounds of Brownlow House. Brownlow House was built in 1839 but hasn’t been inhabited since the late 19th century. It has recently had some restoration work done and it is used for functions including weddings.

The park is a lovely place to visit all year round. In the spring we enjoy all the new babies on the lake, in summer it is a sea of green, in autumn a great place to go if you like wading through leaves and in winter you always get a great welcome from the wildfowl when you arrive with a big bag of bread!
All this and it’s only a 10 minute walk from my front door!

So that’s ‘my park’, I hope you enjoyed your walk! 🙂