Tag Archives: Vintage Tea

The Rocking Dog Remember Me Project

Remember Me,Rocking Dog

Remember Me

Real Live Rocking Dog and I have been walking together for a glorious ten years now. Many of our walks have taken us close to the war memorial on Whiteshill Common, Hambrook. I have often stopped and looked at the names on the edifice, many of the surnames have seemed very familiar to me. Having been brought up in a village close by I have more than likely rubbed shoulders in years gone by with the sons, nephews, grandsons and maiden aunts etc.. of those commemorated on the memorial.

For a while now I have been wanting to research those 53 WW1 names on the memorial to link in with next years Armistice centenary. Then my plans became more bold, I decided I wanted to visit the graves/memorials of these fallen soldiers. The challenge has begun.

As we are heading through France and Belgium next month I have started to research the resting places of all those inscribed names. I am ashamed to say I was incredibly naive to think that the majority of these servicemen would be in a couple of cemeteries. Thus far I will need to visit 18 French cemeteries and 2 in Belgium. There are some Commonwealth graves in local churchyards and one that I will visit in the Rhondda, Wales. Others are off limits due to their location or security risk (Iraq (formerly Mesopotamia), Azerbajan, Israel, Gallipoli and Greece). The biggest of the cemeteries I need to visit is the Thiepval Memorial with over 72,000 casualties. Meanwhile other cemeteries to visit have only 100 or so casualties. I am wondering which I am going to be most moved by, the enormity of Thiepval or the intimacy of the smaller cemeteries. Thiepval is the largest Commonwealth Memorial to the missing in the world. Most of those commemorated there died during the Somme Offensive of 1916.

I have been using Ancestry.co.uk, the Commonwealth Graves Commission site and local archives (including Frenchay Museum) to conduct my research. The research has led me to war memorial plaques at Marlborough College and the Australian War Memorial. It has also uncovered stories of the near blind villager who knitted a large quantity of woollen mittens and socks for those in the trenches at Gallipoli. There are stories of a villager housing many Belgian refugees and other locals who were instrumental in organising & sending out Christmas parcels to the soldiers of the villages. These parcels were an amazing morale boost for the men at the front. Others nursed at a temporary hospital tending the wounded, whilst others managed poultry to lay eggs for the patients.

As 2018 beckons I want to start compiling A4 sheets (which will be laminated) of the lives and deaths of these soldiers. With the current householders’ permissions I hope to attach one of these “Remember Me” sheets to a door or gate where the soldier was bought up, schooled, worshipped or worked. I will hopefully be able to track down photo’s and personalise each history. These soldiers will simply not be allowed to be just a name on a war memorial. Thank you to kind friends who are knitting poppies to attach to the histories. Pretty please sometime later I would love to buddy up with anyone who has a super duper laminator!

I am hoping that the culmination of all this will be a vintage tea next November. The icing on the cake would be if ancestors of those commemorated came to pay tribute to their relative, and of course to eat Rocking Dog cake.

I include photo’s of my Great Aunt Susan who was called up to be a nurse with the Expeditionary Force in the first few days of the war. Another photo shows my two great uncles, one of whom (David Cresser) served in Gallipoli with the Anzacs. He also had the honour of raising the Union Flag in German occupied Samoa. Finally another photo shows my Grandfather John Warrington Scott (top right, bit of a lad!) He served with Royal Engineers and was very badly gassed in the trenches. Thankfully all these relatives returned home to Scotland and New Zealand.

Have you got relatives who served in WW1? As the 2018 centenary beckons let us Remember Them.

Have a good week and stay cosy, autumn seems to have arrived! Love Rocking Dog x

 War Memorial Rocking Dog

War Memorial,

Frenchay Church,Rocking Dog

Frenchay Church

Commonwealth Grave,Rocking Dog

Commonwealth Grave

Royal Engineer Grandfather,Rocking Dog

Royal Engineer Grandfather

My Great Uncles WW1,Rocking Dog

My Great Uncles WW1

Gt Aunt Susan WW1, France,Rocking Dog

Gt Aunt Susan WW1, France

A Wedding, St Andrew’s And Planning For Christmas

Lost Menu, Rocking Dog

Lost Menu

Poor Rocking Dog is feeling decidedly old and dog-eared! Last week was a busy one with my St Andrew’s Day Celebration, and then in very quick succession a lovely wedding to cater for.

Thank you to all those folk who came out on a cold frosty evening to buy, eat and chat last Wednesday. With these colder temperatures it is all too tempting to curl up on the sofa and nestle down for the evening.Thank you for generous donations for Young Carers and BUST, the total will be given after my Winter Wonderland event on Sunday. I would love to see you then, let’s get festive together!

In between events there were neighbours to visit. Plants and eats were enrobed in crisp white tissue and snowy white bags. I don’t always need to do colour!

Sunday was spent washing a Mini full of vintage china. How pretty it all looked laid up on freshly starched vintage table linen. What a gorgeous bride and groom …..but where did they and their 50 ish guests put ALL that tea?! Four litres of milk and sixty tea bags has to be a record! Very frustratingly I left the menu’s at home – so for any guests tuning in this morning I have posted a pic’ of the lost menu! The Rocking Dog team had to work in an absolutely minuscule kitchen, but the tea pots got filled, cakes got laid up on vintage cake stands and the tiramisu’s were embellished with their raspberries! Thanks to Marie, Lara, Holly and Kylie, you were brilliant. I really do think this was my swan song regarding weddings – the stamina required is substantial and drinking Red Bull is unfortunately not the answer!

This week THE decorations will come tumbling down from the attic, and Mission Winter Wonderland will be deployed. Very worryingly it seems such a short time ago that they were being packed up to head into the attic after the festivities of 2015. Frightening.

Have a wonderful week, love a very tired Rocking Dog x

PS. Cranberry Zinger served outside whilst the venue was turned from chapel to tearoom has the following ingredients. Cranberry juice, orange juice, Spiced berry cordial, sliced root ginger, sliced clementines, fresh cranberries, sugar, cinnamon stick. Bring mix gently to boil and simmer and serve.

Bridal Brownie, Rocking Dog

Bridal Brownie

Chintzy China,Rocking Dog

Chintzy China

Cranberry Zinger,Rocking Dog

Cranberry Zinger

St Andrew's Sale,Rocking Dog

St Andrew’s Sale

Preserve Bonanza!,Rocking Dog

Preserve Bonanza!

Glittery Succulent,Rocking Dog

Glittery Succulent

Care Packages,Rocking Dog

Care Packages

'Tis The Season......,Rocking Dog

‘Tis The Season……

....To Deck The Halls!,Rocking Dog

…..To Deck The Halls!

Where Do I Begin? Rocking Dog Ventures Into The Jungle

Get In The Weed Squad!, Rocking Dog

Get In The Weed Squad!

Where Do I Begin? I finally ventured into my jungle of a garden yesterday. The sun together with rain spells has meant that my wild garden is even wilder than usual! Though the prospect of tackling the garden was daunting, it very soon became apparent that at least the weeds were deliciously big!

Weeding and pruning kept me busy in the heat, and I was able to release the fig tree and roses from Triffid sized weeds. Gardening is like sewing, you at least see results quickly. The play house can now be seen, its rambling Kiwi hair style severely trimmed! More borders and banks await their turn in being cultivated. It will take a while, and I hope gardening time won’t be punctuated by rain or unbearable heat.

While the brook is low I need to wade out and bale out the acrylic bath which has floated down stream. Sadly my boots are leaky, so it may be a somewhat uncomfortable task.

Perhaps when more progress has been made I can treat myself to some seed scattering and a trip to Riverside Garden Centre. I love this garden centre….because it sells….plants! There are no ghastly bloated concessions selling lap top trays, floral teapots, magnifying glasses, fudge and other nick nackery! These shops are definitely something that i’d put into Room 101.

So I have begun. I will try to keep going, I really will. Then there’s the awful prospect of the back garden…..aggggghhhhhh! Oh for a courtyard with potted plants and dribbling water feature!

Perhaps I need to organise a vintage afternoon tea event to give me something to work towards. Does tea in a vintage cup, together with home baked cakes and scones whilst sat in a blousy verdant garden with friends appeal? Let me know.

Love from a very back achey Rocking Dog x

Spot The Play House!, Rocking Dog

Spot The Play House!

Pretty Lawn, Rocking Dog

Pretty Lawn

Shady Dell, Rocking Dog

Shady Dell

Weedy Bank, Rocking Dog

Weedy Bank

Spot The Angel, Rocking Dog

Spot The Angel

& THAT Bath!, Rocking Dog

& THAT Bath!

The Vintage Washerwoman!

The Housewife Is Efficient If The Clock Is Correct, Rocking Dog

The Housewife Is Efficient If The Clock Is Correct

I have been the Vintage Washerwoman! Laundering, starching and pressing, Rocking Dog has been dealing with a mountain of vintage hand embroidered table linen. The delicious pieces will be for sale at Rocking Dog’s festive sales (Saturday December 5th The Original Vintage & Handmade Christmas Fair at Chipping Sodbury and Rocking Dog’s very own sale on Sunday 13th December).

I particularly love the German wall hanging in the large photograph. Being someone who is persistently chasing her tail I like the ironic phrase “The housewife is efficient if the clock is correct”. I think this piece will be adorning my kitchen sometime very soon!

There are festive cloths sewn with pine cones, stars, candles, holly, baubles and bells. Another laundered stash feature florals. Violets, apple blossom, roses, daisies and other embroidered flora ramble over table cloths and tray cloths. How lovely to lay up a table with snowy sprigged linen, vintage china and delicious homemade cakes. What could be more lovely than enjoying a vintage tea in front of a blazing fire.

Continental window panels have been reconfigured by The Dog into pretty decorative cloths. Oh too lovely to dry dishes but sweet hung from a kitchen peg to add detail to a tired kitchen.

Vintage Washerwoman, Rocking Dog

Vintage Washerwoman

Laundered & Starched, Rocking Dog

Laundered & Starched

Festive, Rocking Dog

Festive

Floral, Rocking Dog

Floral

Drying Dishes, Rocking Dog

Drying Dishes

Time For Tea, Rocking Dog

Time For Tea