I have been remiss in talking to you, my Darlings, and have determined that for this New Year I shall be much more conscientious. In my defence, adapting to life here in the Colonies has been suprisingly time-consuming.
October was occupied by removing the wax from the hives and making candles to take us through the long winter. I must chuckle as I refer to the “long winter”as I have heard so many warnings of the fury and desolation of this time of year, but have thus far only experienced the incredible beauty of the trees as the coating of ice sparkles in the sun, or how fresh and clean the vista becomes after a fresh dusting of snow.
On the solemn advice of friends who have been here for more winters than I, we have moved from the summer kitchen and are now using it for food and wood storage to take us through this “long winter” (which I write with a smirk).
October was also when apples and potatoes and carrots were buried in the cold ground of the cold storage shed. It seemed as though the wood cook-stove had all elements perpetually occupied with the making of jams and jellies, pickles, cordials, or relishes. Eggs that were not immediately required for cooking or eating, were pickled, as were cucumbers and of course, the cabbage is bubbling happily in its crock.
Garlic and corn were bound and hung, meats preserved and hung, and the herbs and spices also lined up so densely that one could imagine the walls of the summer kitchen almost bulging!
Also in October began the first of the classes on English Dancing held at the Spencerville Mill. The classes were exceedingly well attended with persons newly learning to dance, refreshing their skills, or just enjoying an afternoon of friendship and musical civility in preparation for the very anticipated Regency Ball to be held during the Mills' Heritage Fair at June next. It was so inspiring to see the vast improvement in the skills of all involved so by the end of the lessons which were very ably led by Mr. Nigel Kilby, the entire floor was genteelly moving in concert to the music.
I was also appreciative to meet such a collection of Ladies and Gentlemen with varying experiences here in the Colony. Some, like myself, so recently arrived, yet others had come some or many years hence as babes in arms. I suspect given the proximity that there may also have been one or two of those Damned Yankees in attendance, but as the afternoon was one of polite respect and consideration all were much too dignified to broach the possibility, in spite of the increasing tentions.
The Countess of Crowder was, of course, in attendance-never one to miss an opportunity to display the newest gown (or beau). She does dance beautifully, as does the Lord? Count? Duke? (I do have trouble keeping up.) Irrespective of the title of this current partner-he does dance exquisitly and they do make a lovely couple almost floating above the floor.
I shall update you again soon.