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I recently had the opportunity to cook dinner in the kitchen of the small Yellow Tavern at Eastfield. It was a day to remember, filled with friends, historic buildings, wonderful food and lively conversation. Simply perfect in every way…

On Sunday, in the brief lull between Thanksgiving and the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season, Brian and I were invited to spend a magical day at Historic Eastfield.  The entire day was the (almost) impromptu plan of Sandy Connors, a fellow doll lover & amazing artist who creates and prints wonderful wood engravings.  In just a few days time Sandy somehow managed to arrange for a private tour of Eastfield and the use of the Yellow Tavern.

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Thank you Sandy and Scott for an amazing day!

What fun!  Planning the menu with co-hostess ( friend & exquisite doll maker) Peggy Flavin was just the beginning of a lovely adventure…

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Our day started early, as we prepared to head 2 hours north in a van full of hearth equipment, kindling, food and dishes.

The kitchen in the Yellow Tavern was a welcoming space to cook in, from the same era as our house, but with a slightly more spacious hearth.  Peggy and I spent the morning getting the kitchen arranged to our satisfaction and cooking. Brian hauled our hearth equipment, food and utensils out of the cars, carried in wood and kept track of time for us. We took advantage of the additional fires burning in the other rooms of the tavern and set one of the tin kitchens in front of the parlor fireplace, where the chickens roasted and filled the air with delicious aromas…

Mid-way through the day Sandy arrived, bringing the guests of honor, Christine and Bob Crocker.  Christine makes charming 18th century style dolls that I love❤ and writes for  A Simple Life magazine.  It was so nice to finally meet Christie in person!  Much like pen pals of long ago, who eventually had the chance to see one another face to face.

Scott Penpraze was very patient with us, as he guided Christie, Bob, Brian and me through all of the buildings in Eastfield and answered our many questions.  Peggy popped in and out of the tour, joining us for a bit here and there, then returning to the kitchen to see if Sandy needed help.  Eventually we returned to the tavern, where we all toasted bread over the hearth to enjoy with cheese and wine. Afterwards came a lively, boisterous dinner. If you love old buildings, Eastfield is as much a treat as Disney World.  It is a bit along the lines of Strawbery Banke Museum, but much more intimate and hands on.  In the morning when we first arrived at the little Yellow Tavern, it felt more like entering a house in a living history museum; but as the day went on, the fires warmed the rooms and the simple act of cooking and using the tavern for it’s intended purpose made it come alive!  As the candles burned down, we lingered over desert, wishing that such a perfect day would last just a bit longer… ❤

Dinner at Eastfield

Sunday November 27th, 2016

Menu

Pounded Cheese w/Toast

Blue Cheese w/Balsamic Vinegar & Toast

Manchego Cheese w/Quince Marmalade on Toast

Roasted Chicken

Garlic & Rosemary Roast Pork Loin with an Accompaniment of Quince Marmalade

Roasted Potatoes

Dressed Salad, receipt from The Virginia Housewife or, Methodical Cook

Stewed Mushrooms

Cranberry Sauce with Roxbury Russet Apples, Vanilla & Cinnamon

Dried Apple Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce

Joe Frogger Cookies, Embossed Sugar Cookies, and Ginger Cakes

Wine

Cider

Sage Tea

Tea

* click on any image to enlarge

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I loved this huge painted canvas sign at the entrance to the Barn Star show! It reminds me of the bears that my maternal grandfather had, who drank “sody pop” and occasionally beer.🙂

I’ve had “attend antiques week in New Hampshire” on my Get Out & Go Do These Things Because You Live in New England List for 20+ years.  Last week I finally made it up there! It was just as great as I thought it would be, but even more breath takingly expensive than I expected.

Here is a glimpse at just a few of the great things we saw.

 

In addition to antiques, we spent a little time eating in interesting places such as the Red Arrow Diner and The Tuckaway Tavern, Market and Butchery.  We even managed to locate McDonald’s lobster rolls, something we couldn’t find at home in New Milford.🙂

* If you’d like to see and read about the dolls and doll related antiques I found in NH click here.

Deck the Halls…

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The presents are wrapped, the stockings are hung and the house is festooned with greenery…  Here comes Christmas, ready or not!!!

With fond Christmas wishes from our home to yours!

www.paulawalton.comToday I took a day off!  This hasn’t happened often this year, as I am still running behind, trying to catch up due to unforeseen family matters.  I do admit to having a few twinges of guilt, which I firmly squashed down to the very back of my mind and went on to enjoy a wonderful day with a very dear friend.  We ventured out to Ridgefield and Wilton, Connecticut, where we attended the American Craftsmen Show and the Wilton Historical Society American Artisan Show.  These shows are the current incarnation of the huge show that the Wilton Historical Society used to hold every year at the Wilton High School.  I did the show at the high school for several years, and have always enjoyed attending and shopping when I wasn’t exhibiting. This years American Craftsman Show was held in Ridgefield’s Lounsbury House, shown above.

The side entrance of Lounsbury House.

The side entrance of Lounsbury House.

Looking up the staircase at Lounsbury House.

Looking up the staircase at Lounsbury House.

We had a chance to catch up with friend and fellow craftsperson Pamela Dalton.

We had a chance to catch up with friend and fellow craftsperson Pamela Dalton.

I've done quite a few shows with Pamela and we always find it amusing when people get us confused - Pamela Dalton / Paula Walton... I'm quite a bit taller and have about 10 times more hair... plus we make totally different things :)

I’ve done quite a few shows with Pamela and we always find it amusing when people get us confused – Pamela Dalton / Paula Walton… I’m quite a bit taller and have about 10 times more hair… plus we make totally different things🙂

Pamela had some wonderful new paper cuttings. I indulged and bought several garden themed ones to hang in my new painting studio, which overlooks two of my gardens.

Pamela had some wonderful new paper cuttings. I indulged and bought several garden themed ones to hang in my new painting studio, which overlooks two of my gardens.

www.paulawalton.com

We found sewing themed treasures upstairs at Deborah Hartwick's booth, in the form of button collages and tiny emery filled velvet pincushions ( a minuscule mouse and cat for me).

We found sewing themed treasures upstairs at Deborah Hartwick’s booth, in the form of button collages and tiny emery filled velvet pincushions ( a minuscule mouse and cat for me).

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

The Wilton Historical Society was our 2nd stop. This year the show was held entirely on the society grounds.

The Wilton Historical Society was our 2nd stop. This year the show was held entirely on the society grounds.

I've always loved the two houses, two barns and the blacksmith shop that make up the Wilton Historical Society. I used to do a lot of hands on demonstrations and teach mini- classes for them during various events and when they had all of the town children come for field trips.

I’ve always loved the two houses, two barns and the blacksmith shop that make up the Wilton Historical Society. I used to do a lot of hands on demonstrations and teach mini- classes for them during various events and when they had all of the town children come for field trips.

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

We admired some marvelous tramp art, wooden ware and ingenious whirligigs.  I found some really nice redware herb markers at Bob & Kay Shaeff’s booth and purchased one each of the 14 different herb varieties that they had for sale.  Kay even assured me that she could make me custom markers for any other herbs that I needed!

As great as all the crafts were, I think our favorite part of the show was the gourmet grilled cheese food truck parked at the show entrance!!!

Grilled cheese!

Grilled cheese!

I clearly need to follow these people on facebook :)

I clearly need to follow these people on facebook🙂

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and if the grilled cheese truck wasn't great enough, there was also a crepe truck!

and if the grilled cheese truck wasn’t great enough, there was also a crepe truck!

www.paulawalton.com

We indulged and split a honey crepe for desert <3

We indulged and split a honey crepe for desert❤

As much as I love what I do, it was very, very nice to take a day off.  I need to remind myself to stop, take a little time and enjoy friends and small pleasures… Admiring the work of other craftsmen has renewed my creative energies!!!  What an excellent day!

Were you wondering what I bought at the Elephant’s Trunk last Sunday?  (As requested) Here are some of the things that I brought home from my last two trips to the flea market ❤

When I saw this chair it was love at first site! I adore the shape of the arms and the center back spindle. I am also quite smitten with the colonial revival era painting that was added to this early 19th century chair.

When I saw this chair it was love at first site! I adore the shape of the arms and the center back spindle. I am also quite smitten with the colonial revival era painting that was added to this early 19th century chair.

A closer look...

A closer look…

a home in my dining room!

At home in my dining room!

Sadie approves :)

Sadie approves🙂

Two more of my finds from 8/30. An amazing early transferware bowl, which just happens to match one of my dinner plates, and a small mid-19th century wool embroidered sampler.

Two more of my finds from 8/30. An amazing early transferware bowl, which just happens to match one of my dinner plates, and a small mid-19th century wool embroidered sampler.

This tiny sampler is later than most of the samplers in my collection AND it needs to be reframed, but it has some of my favorite colors and it was only $15 !!!

This tiny sampler is later than most of the samplers in my collection AND it needs to be reframed, but it is stitched with some of my favorite colors and it was only $15 !!!

Another wool embroidered sampler that I bought for the colors <3

Another wool embroidered sampler that I bought for the colors❤

One of this Sunday's chairs. This one is a reproduction Windsor chair from Martin's Chairs in PA. I already owned one of his comb back windsors, so this is a nice companion piece and a nice sturdy chair for visitors who get nervous about sitting in my tiny antique chairs :)

One of this Sunday’s chairs. This one is a reproduction Windsor chair from Martin’s Chairs in PA. I already owned one of his comb back Windsors, so this is a nice companion piece and a good sturdy chair for visitors who get nervous about sitting in my tiny antique chairs🙂

These count as the afore mentioned

These count as the afore mentioned “tiny antique chairs” . This pair was another of my Sunday finds.

The kittens are captivated by all of my black chairs. Jack couldn't wait to try one out.

The kittens are captivated by all of my black chairs. Jack couldn’t wait to try one out.

Late 19th century folk art scenery panel. Another love at first sight item <3 There is just something about the shape, the colors (a great early green and lots of lavender sky) and the soft mural like quality that I could not pass by.

Late 19th century folk art scenery panel. Another love at first sight item <3  There is just something about the shape, the colors (a great early green and lots of lavender sky)  and the soft mural like quality that I could not pass by.

At the moment the panel is hanging above the mantle in our bedroom, where it is a perfect fit.

At the moment the panel is hanging above the mantle in our bedroom, where it is a perfect fit.

Antique clothing! These are the pieces that are in very good condition and can be used as is.

Antique clothing! These are the pieces that are in very good condition and can be used as is.

A fourth quarter 19th century child's under vest and a doll size petticoat.

A fourth quarter 19th century child’s under vest and a doll size petticoat.

Gorgeous details on a black petticoat...

Gorgeous details on a black petticoat…

Petticoats!!!

Petticoats!!!

Two weeks worth of imperfect petticoats hang in my studio waiting to be scaled down into doll size undergarments.

Two weeks worth of imperfect petticoats hang in my studio waiting to be scaled down into doll size undergarments.

Antique stocking are something I am always searching for. A tiny Izannah Walker doll that I am restoring is shown in the background.

Antique stockings are something I am always searching for. A tiny Izannah Walker doll that I am restoring is shown in the background.

These stockings are old unused store stock.

These stockings are old unused store stock.

This pair came with a story...

This pair came with a story…

This dapper fellow in the spiffy black suit came home from the Elephant's Trunk earlier this summer. He assured me that he really needed to have his photo included in this post!

This dapper fellow in the spiffy black suit came home from the Elephant’s Trunk earlier this summer. He assured me that he really needed to have his photo included in this post!

Off the clothes line! Antique white underwer makes the perfect sundress for a hot late summer day <3

Off the clothes line! Antique white underwear makes the perfect sundress for a hot, late summer day❤

I spent a few hours this morning searching for treasures at the Elephant's Trunk Flea Market.

I spent a few hours this morning searching for treasures at the Elephant’s Trunk Flea Market.

I have to admit that I was feeling a bit bereft this weekend, missing the former Farmington/Harwinton Antique Show that was always held on Labor Day weekend.  In past years I would drive to Farmington on Saturday to shop the show (and later to Harwinton when the show moved from the Polo Grounds to the fair grounds there).  Then on Sunday I would shop at the Elephant’s Trunk and sometimes at Stormville too!

The Elephant’s Trunk more than made up for the missing shows today.  I found some wonderful things!  Technically I was “working”, shopping for antique fabrics to fashion into clothing for the reproduction Izannah Walker dolls that I make and sell.  I DID buy a huge armful of lightly damaged antique petticoats and stockings ( I never cut up antique garments or quilts unless they are too far gone to be restored).  I also found some fantastic items for the house!  I bought three more black Windsor chairs… I have a thing for black chairs. :)  I purchased a gray wicker plant stand, very similar to one that I bought a few years ago, so now I have a pair.  My splurge for the day was a folk art painting on a wooden panel, reminiscent of a carousel rounding board or an over mantle.  Other finds included three purple and white restaurant china plates, a teeny, tiny muffin pan, a silver glass Christmas ball ornament, two very small doll stands, and an enormous silver serving spoon.  All in all and very satisfying morning of antiquing!!!

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

www.paulawalton.com

To top off my perfect day I had the BEST parking spot! Even though the parking lot was cut throat with people endlessly circling looking for somewhere to leave their cars, I managed to find a shaded spot right by one of the gates! It was a miracle and made my frequent trips back to the van to drop of my purchases much easier.

To top off my perfect day I had the BEST parking spot! Even though the parking lot was cut throat with people endlessly circling looking for somewhere to leave their cars, I managed to find a shaded spot right by one of the gates! It was a miracle and made my frequent trips back to the van to drop of my purchases much easier.

Spring is very reluctant to make an appearance in our part of New England this year!  Even though it is snowing outside, the flowers I brought inside last fall are doing their best to proclaim that spring is here.snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

Two types of green flowering tobacco.❤

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

White geraniums and my potted fig tree are both brushing the ceiling…

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

A snowy start to spring 2015!

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

snowy spring www.paulawalton.com

Not a good day to plant peas along the picket fence in my vegetable garden.

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