Planting a Memory

I’m not sure why but I feel I owe this little blog an apology. Oh sweet little blog, how I have neglected you. You deserve not what I have done unto you, you deserve but the greatest affection and attention. Shakespearean apologies aside, it has been a good 8 or 9 months since I ventured into the back office of WordPress and typed my thoughts into the little white box, and for that I am very sorry. With my final year of university currently entering it’s closing stages and with finals only months away (help help for the love of God help) it’s safe to say it’s been a little hectic. But hello again, I’m still here. How are you doing?

A few weeks ago I went along to Tatton Park, a National Trust property up north which has always held a place close to my heart. When I was little I would go to Tatton with my grandparents or my parents whenever I had a day off from my busy school schedule (colouring at 9am, nap at 11). A huge stately home with acres and acres of open land, it’s perfect for kids to run off their excess energy – of which I had plenty – as well as parents with its well kept gardens which have long been my mother’s source of horticultural inspiration. Plus, I’m not kidding when I say that Tatton has the best playground ever.

Because of the close place it has in my heart and its role in my upbringing, ever since my grandparents passed away a few years ago I have wanted to commemorate their memory with a lasting tribute in the park. And that is exactly what we did a few weeks ago. Ladies and Gentlemen, I do not wish to brag but my family are now the proud owners of our very own beech tree in Tatton Park. We even got to plant it ourselves, although that probably sounds more impressive than it was, given that it was a tiny sapling of a tree. Adorable. Sure, we chose quite possibly the wettest day on record to do it, but that just adds to the experience, no?

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After our stunning display of digging, planting and general gawping as burly men did the real work (pretty sure I was more of a hindrance than a help), followed by a thorough towel dry, we grabbed some lunch in the Gardener’s Retreat, a small cottage-turned-cafe in the park serving sandwiches and hot drinks. Ideal for a day where it feels like nature is really giving you all it’s got. Also it has the most beautiful mismatched china, a decorative decision which made me really ridiculously quite happy (it’s the small things).

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I’m aware that this might seem a tedious thing to do a blog post on – especially when making my grand return – and I certainly don’t expect this to break the internet. But it was a lovely day and it’s something really special to me; the creation of a place that I – and the rest of my family clan – can go to remember my grandparents, in a place that they truly loved very much. Knowing that tree will stand there for centuries really feels like a fitting tribute, and I’m so glad we did it. Do you have any special places or traditions?

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