Saturday, February 8, 2014

Canterbury's Best Kept Vintage Secret...The Tea House Cafe in Lincoln

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Hello everyone! It has been such a long time since I have posted...for good reason (exciting reason!) but more to come on that in the next post. 
For now, I couldn't think of a better way for Spoonful of Vintage to welcome in 2014 than with a post about a decadent, beautiful high tea! 
Today was my beautiful friend Caitlyn's birthday, so we dressed in our pretty tea drinking dresses and celebrated with a girlie girl high tea date at The Tea House Cafe and Restaurant in Lincoln.
We all ordered the 'Royal High Tea'- and it definitely made us feel very regal! 
We were greeted with an eclectic mix of silver, hand painted china and brass teapots filled with our choice of gourmet teas. I went for a classic Earl Grey. As a vintage loving lass, I am very particular with my tea! I am usually disappointed when it comes to tea brewed anywhere more than a meter from my kitchen table, but this was actually the first perfectly brewed tea I've had in a cafe! Other favourites at the table were Chilli Chocolate and Turkish Apple- Delish! 
Our high tea's came out on individual vintage three tier cake stands with an array of sweet and savoury treats. They were even able to cater to my vegetarian diet with spinach quiches and scrumptious vege club sandwiches amongst the sugared delights. Over lunch I ate more sugar, pastry and cream than Marie Antoinette herself! I don't eat food like this too often so I advocate that if your going to do it- do it decadently with a high tea! The food was so good that conversation was often interrupted with a 'Yuuuuuuuuuum' or 'Oh my Goshhhhhhhh' after every first bite of a new treat! 
The service was top notch with lovely waitresses dressed in lacy blue peplums and matching chuck tailors, a modern twist on high tea attire. Our waitress was very patient with our many questions and requests and was brave enough to attempt some shots of us with my DSLR!
When I dine out, I really take in the atmosphere, decor and ambience around me. 
The delicate golden wallpaper, plush queen Anne sofa's and 1920's music playing softly in the background really drew together the whole affair. I love 'experience' dining where you are escorted away from the present to a different time and place through the food, surroundings and company. 
Canterbury people; if you haven't dined at The Tea House, do it! Any other treats you indulge in will pale in comparison thereon after.
We are all such busy people these days aren't we? It was so lovely to take a little break from every day life and spend some quality time with my beautiful friends and celebrate another birthday! 
I hope you have all been able to squeeze a little bit of quality time in with friends recently! Do you have any local haunts or special occasion places you like to frequent with your pals?

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Celebrating 6 Years Together

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Yesterday Andrew and I were very blessed to mark our 6th year anniversary as a couple. This year we didn't have much money to spend on celebrating and I was determined for us to have something a little more exciting than a movie date...so instead I created our own surprise romantic teepee retreat on our front deck! Andrew is in the final weeks of finishing up his degree, so I wanted him to be surprised when he got home from a hard day of work and to know how ridiculously proud I am of him!
I had so much fun transforming our deck into a vintage, 1970's inspired hideaway. I wanted to create something that summed up who we are, while keeping it simple-I just gathered beautiful bits and pieces from around our home and created them into something different!
I also kept our dinner summery and simple; yummy bits and pieces to pop on pull-apart bread and crackers, with our favourite beer and wine to celebrate!
We had such a lovely evening eating, sipping beverages, napping and reminiscing over the many memories that we have created in the past 6 years! The teepee was such a cosy hideaway that we tucked ourselves away for most of the evening from sunset, until the sky was jet black and scattered with stars.

And in getting as PDA as is possible on the internet- Andrew, this is for you...I can't think of anyone else more perfect that I could have shared the past 6 years of my life with. You are my anchor, comedian, intellectual equal, snuggle monster and best friend. You tolerate my stress, weirdness, creative chaos, the multiple broken cats I bring home, and you help me find my colouring pencils when I lose them. We are at such a massive turning point in our lives learning what it means to be 'real grown ups' (not that I ever think that will apply to us!) and I feel so excited and safe about this- because it's you. Thank you for being beautiful, wonderful, weird, you. So here is to so many, many, many, many, many, many more crazy, exciting, loving years to come. ♥

Monday, October 21, 2013

Maruia Springs Part 2: Thermal Pools and Enchanted River Walk

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In our short stay at Maruia Springs, we managed to pack in so many tranquil experiences! 
We took ourselves out for an adventure along the river, stopping to look at the abundance of lychen, moss and occasional fungi growing atop the river stones. As we were high up in the Lewis Pass, it almost felt like you could touch the mountain tops. Looking up the valley, the highest peaks were dotted with snow and foggy clouds rolled in and out covering the mountain tops so you only caught a small glimpse at a time. 
The beech forest really felt like something out of a fairytale!  Green as far as the eye could see, moist and smelling of moss and earth. The forest was peaceful, wild and enchanting all in one. 
After tiring ourselves out with our whimsical walk along the riverbed, we spent our time relaxing in the hot pools. The water was pure and untreated full of sulphur, minerals and nutrient dens algae which did wonders for my skin and tense muscles. 
We also had a truly Japanese Experience with the traditional Onsen Japanese bath houses. One part of the resort has segregated bath houses for men and women (which you can see in the last picture). I loved the added little touches of tiny wooden stools and buckets. With the Onsen's many Japanese details, I felt like I was in magical bathhouse scene from Hayao Miyazaki's movie Spirited Away
And what a better way to finish off our magical weekend away with cooked breakfast in the restaurant peeping out through the lush green of beech trees. The first photo in this post shows this perfectly. Andrew waiting for his eggs, staring out through the big windows through green dappled light and beech leaves. That photo is one of my favourite moments that I've ever been able to capture photographically...it really sums up what a relaxing, contemplative and refreshing experience we shared.  

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