Saturday, 2 October 2010

The Secret Garden and a Spring Picnic

It seems that spring has not been cancelled after all! What a relief! I have been waiting with great anticipation for the "Secret Garden effect" to burst upon us.
Surely it must be time...

(via we heart it)

and finally it is!
One of my favourite movies of all time is the Secret Garden.
Based on a novel written by Francis Hodgson Burnett, published in 1911. The version that I know in particular, is a remake from 1994. Our David was only about 5 at the time when we went to see it, one school holidays..a little sombre in the beginning for a wee boy, poor thing.
 But such a wonderful tale.. 

The main character of the story is Mary Lennox, a sickly, sallow and sour-faced girl. She has been born to rich British parents who are currently living in India. Her self-interested parents were busy with extravagant parties and neglected Mary, leaving her with her ayah and wanting nothing to do with her. Orphaned by an outbreak of cholera, she is sent back to England to be cared for by her mother's sister's husband, Archibald Craven, a reclusive widower.
The only person who has any time for the little girl is the chambermaid Martha Sowerby, who tells Mary about a locked up garden, surrounded by a wall that was the late Mrs Craven's favorite place. No one has entered the garden since she died because Archibald locked its entrance and buried the key. He hasn't told anyone where it is.
Mary finds the key to the secret garden buried outside with the help of a robin. The same robin shows her where the door is hidden beneath overgrown ivy. Once inside, she discovers that although the roses seem lifeless, some of the other flowers have survived. She decides to tend the garden herself. Mary wants to keep her new found garden a secret, but she knows she needs help tending it. She gets this help from Martha's brother Dickon. He seems to have a connection with all wild animals and plants. Mary gives him money to buy gardening implements and he shows her that the roses, though neglected, are not dead. When Mary's uncle briefly meets with her for the first time since her arrival, Mary asks him for permission to claim her own garden from any abandoned part of the grounds, and he acquiesces.
Some nights, Mary hears someone weeping in another part of the house. When she asks questions, the servants become evasive. They tell her that she is hearing things, such as a servant with a toothache. Shortly after her uncle's visit, she goes exploring and discovers her uncle's son, Colin, a lonely, bedridden boy as petulant and disagreeable as Mary used to be. His father shuns him because the child closely resembles his mother. Mr. Craven is a mild hunchback, and both he and Colin are morbidly convinced that the boy will develop the same condition. The servants have been keeping Mary and Colin a secret from one another because Colin doesn't like strangers staring at him and is prone to terrible tantrums.
Eventually Mary and Dickon bring Colin outside in a wheelchair so he can see his mother's garden.

 Delighted, he visits it 
with Mary and Dickon
 whenever the weather
The garden is truly heaven on earth, a place of beauty, harmony & eventually healing for them all.
I cried & cried when I first saw the Secret Garden.  
I soo wanted to live in this place!! 
I have looked & looked for pictures from the movie but couldn't find a thing so I resorted to pausing the DVD & taking a photo of the (flickery) screen..not too bad considering!
 Spring has arrived indeed.. it would seem, on wings of grace & beauty
astonishing, miracle green..

Whole trees full! Trees planted several generations ago by people with forethought & vision who cared enough to plant for us & not themselves..they would have never seen them in such largess or splendour, not in their own lifetime.We are so glad that we live just 2mins walk away & just around the corner.
  This pretty flowering currant hangs over a fence just down the road.
Not far away either, is the A&P Showgrounds where our Farmers' Market is held every Sunday, most of the week (& year) the grounds are pretty empty & we keep saying we should come back for a picnic so when Tuesday arrived in such glorious perfection & Rob had a day off we packed up a simple picnic in the late afternoon, gathered a vintage blanket & an old radio & went down the road...
& found a perfect spot 
 with friends

& provisions

and the loveliest of views

 an orchard of pink apple blossom just over there

 blue heron & pukeko,
mallard ducks & cockabillies,
 water lilies & monarch butterflies

 & magical mossy places
 even sheep grazing near by

 & such lovely light..

even when we got home

light makes everything 
seem so different

through the bathroom window
and our bedroom
meanwhile, the Granny bonnets nod away in the garden
some precocious roses are already in bloom
...pretty things in the parlour
The arrival of spring somehow rekindles
 ideals of renewed innocence...
fresh starts & simple living..ooh no not cleaning! 
(old Victoria mag pic)
via we heart it
and hope

my motto: Relieve suffering. Create beauty. Plant gardens!
The vintage inspired calendar picture for October is just a every other one in this lovely calendar from The House on the Hill

Our hearts are with you in these coming weeks dear Magpie Chic..we'll be looking out for updates & news.



  1. Thank you for sharing your beautiful picnic photos. Beautiful, sigh. :-)

  2. SOME story! i am enthralled by the watches... :)))

  3. My all time favourite program as a child was the ongoing series of "A Secret Garden"!!! I still have my much worn, dog eared book & only recently totally indulged in watching the movie as shown above - it was a couple of hours of bliss!!! Thanks for the the way, LOVE those watches...& your site - JUST SO PRETTY & DELIGHTFUL!!! Thankyou xx


So lovely of you to leave a comment. Thank you!! ♥

Related Posts with Thumbnails