Saturday, June 6, 2015

Tasha Tudor Day

We have started a new tradition in our household: 
Tasha Tudor Day! 

Tasha Tudor is a world renowned American children's book author and illustrator. Many of her books can be found on Melissa's book shelves, and Abigail, Quinn and Laura have fond memories of reading them when they were young. 

She is very much Melissa's hero (and mine too, since Melissa introduced me to her work), residing in an old new England farm house with goats, chickens, and many adorable corgis. She believed in hard work, imagination, and the beauty and joy that could be found in making things with your own two hands.

Because of our love for Tasha Tudor, we decided to celebrate a day in her honor! We would dress and go about our lives in an old fashioned way. 

And let me tell you...we had so much fun!

The day dawned bright and sunny, and us girls put on our favorite old-fashioned dresses. 

Mine is a vintage German dirndl dress that fits me to a T! This was my first time wearing it, and I couldn't have picked a better occasion. 

I started out my morning by raiding Melissa's table cloth stash..

Quinn, being the helpful husband, had already hung up a long clothes line for me to hang the tablecloths on.  He had helped me plan a special picnic for everyone that day, and it required the perfect setting!

Tablecloths are one of Melissa's favorite things (right up there with dishes, ovens, chocolate and coffee), so we had plenty of beautiful floral printed cloths to hang up.

They would create the perfect backdrop for our picnic!

Abigail came out to help us then. She wore a lovely dress Quinn had gotten her as a Christmas present several years before. Paired with a pretty white lace apron, she looked simply stunning!

Together we hung paper garlands in the blossoming apple trees. I had sewn them all up the night before so we would have them ready. 

Melissa came out then (wearing a dress patterned all in spring flowers), and together we grabbed our trugs and flower clippers and headed down to the flats to find flowers. 

The flats were a-glow with green sea grasses, shimmering in the sun. The mountains looked wild and far-off as we skipped around with bare feet. 

Buttercups, shooting stars, lupin, and sweet pea flowers covered the ground. 

The beauty that surrounded us was amazing, we could have spent our whole day down there!

We filled our baskets to the brims with flowers. 

It was hard to leave the beauty of the flats, but the flowers needed to be put in water and we needed to start on making lunch for the picnic!

We may have stopped on the way back up to the house to take a ride on the swing though...

Once we were back up at the house, we laid down a quilt under the apple blossoms and started cleaning the flowers. 

I had extra cones from my May Day gifts, so we filled them with flowers and hung them in the apple trees. We even had enough for two vases as well!

I used a bundle of extra sweet pea blossoms to make Abigail a flower crown.

Now she looked even more fairy like with that flowing golden hair of hers!

Meanwhile, in the kitchen, Melissa had started the soup for our picnic lunch. Abby and I looked through her Tasha Tudor cookbook and found a bread recipe to try.

The recipe was for a large batch, making four loaves of white bread all together! 
But I have a large family, so we decided to make the full recipe and share what we had left over.

Abigail and I took turns kneading the bread (which is always the funnest part). 

It came out of the oven looking absolutely beautiful! And let me tell you, we ate every last bit of it with honey and jam and butter (all except for the loaf we gave to my family of course). 

Our picnic was the prettiest picnic I've ever had the pleasure to be a part of, and I think everyone else would agree with me.

The apple tree blossoms smelled so sweet as we sat underneath them. 

The tablecloths blew in the breeze...

And the picnic food was beyond yummy!

We all sat together on the quilt we had brought out. We ate, talked, and basked in the warm sunshine.

Melissa remarked, as we stretched out on the quilt after all the food had been eaten and put away, "Yes, I think Tasha Tudor would have been proud."

I think she would have been, too.


  1. I love this post, having adored Tasha Tudor and her way of life. I just recently read an article about growing foxglove, and Tasha was held up as the example of the gardener with the most glorious, lushest foxglove ever. Wish I could have joined you all. Hi, Melissa!

    1. Thank you, Sharon! We're hoping to celebrate Tasha Tudor day every other week, so maybe you'll need to come up to Juneau (or celebrate it in your own home and tell us all about it!).
      -Emily Z.

  2. This is such a timely post. I just received three Tasha Tudor books in the mail THIS week! I told one of my daughters to take a look through A Time to Keep and see of whom it reminded her. (Emily, can you guess?:)) I also have her cookbook, and I can't wait to get started. You certainly have inspired me even more. Your picnic is absolutely lovely as are the three of you ladies. I think Tasha would have been pleased indeed.


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