Monday, June 4, 2018

In My Own Backyard

The Metropolitan Opera Season is over (sigh!) until the fall, but I know New York and everything I love about it will be waiting, unchanged, like a faithful paramour ready to open his arms to me when I return. 




And so it’s time for me to fall in love again with my own town and my own backyard. 



Photo Taken by my Friend and Neighbor Maureen Heacock
 This is the dogwood tree in my backyard in full bloom a few weeks ago. 



Photo Taken by my Friend and Neighbor Maureen Heacock
And this is my next-door neighbor’s dogwood in her backyard.  Don’t they make a fabulous pair?

Each year I eagerly await the first signs of buds on these trees that signal the stirrings of spring.  And then one morning it happens.  I look out my window to find they have burst into glorious bloom and everything around me suddenly seems fresh and new. 




Photo Taken by my Friend and Neighbor Maureen Heacock
While every season here is beautiful, the special partnership that my neighbors form with Mother Nature in spring brings some breathtaking results.  Just look at this magnificent array of tulips at a house around the corner.   




Photo Taken by my Friend and Neighbor Maureen Heacock
This week, I plan to take a walk down Kings Highway, our main street, to check in on what’s old and check out what’s new, at least to me. 







First, I plan to stop in at The Tea Store and visit the charming proprietor Nadine Wylie.





Nadine stocks a dizzying variety of teas and an amazing assortment of accessories for a perfectly traditional tea party with a modern twist.  She also has a large selection of local honeys and, if you’re more of a “java” than a “cuppa” gal, she also has great gourmet coffee blends. 

Just walking in to The Tea Store is a delight with all those wonderful aromas.  Nadine claims her children tell her she talks too much to customers, but that is indeed part of the charm of visiting The Tea Store.  She is as outgoing as she is knowledgeable.  I guarantee you will leave with a smile on your face, a great story and something delicious in your bag. 






Le Café Crêperie - Photo byMatt Skoufalos
Then I’ll stop for lunch at Le Café Crêperie.  I had lunch there a few weeks ago with a friend and neighbor and loved it. 

The owner, Amalesh Maitra, known as “Ash,” emigrated about 25 years ago from the African Republic of Bénin, formerly a French colony, and the moment I sat down, even before I met him, there was a decidedly French feel to the place. 




 

I ordered the crêpe with ham and Brie, and the first bite told me that someone here knew how to make a true French crêpe.  It was delicious, and I told the owner so.  It didn’t take long for us to realize that we had the French language and culture in common.  And the rest, as they say, is histoire.  What a delightful man! 






Next on my list to check out is a new boutique, Maison Marcelle, which friends and neighbors have been telling me about.  It’s billed as “French Inspired Shopping for the Très Chic Woman.”  Well, I certainly can’t pass THAT up, n’est-ce pas? 






It looks like it just might be my quirky kind of place.  Stay tuned for my review. 



You might also enjoy:

In My Own Backyard -- Talented People

In My Own Backyard -- Maison Marcellé





17 comments:

  1. M-T what truly beautiful gardens. It must be a pleasure to walk around your neighbourhood. I am finding not many people are good gardeners in my suburb (including me :( ) but I think a lot of it has to do with a lack of rainfall and a warm/hot climate most of the year. I have never had success growing Dogwood but wish that I had - a glorious showing in your/your neighbours gardens. The crepe looks truly delicious. The stores look very inviting - so much more than a shopping mall which I am gradually coming to detest!!!. I'm pleased you enjoyed the Opera season this year and it will quickly return. Cheers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The truth is, EB, that Mme Mère had the green thumb or as the French say "la main verte" (a green hand) when it came to gardening. She grew the most magnificent roses.

      Both Dogwood trees were here when my neighbor and I moved in. They had been planted when the homes were built in the 70's, so I can take no credit for them.

      I feel very blessed to live in such a beautiful town. The sense of "community" is very alive and strong here. It's a great place to raise a family.

      Like you, I avoid the malls and prefer to give my business to my local merchants. So much more satisfying on so many levels.

      Thanks for your great comments.

      Cheers, M-T

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  2. Hello M-T - What a beautiful walk down your neighborhood... and your new picture is just lovely - Enjoy your summer - Has our first TS of the season - mostly rain and wind... It can stay like that! - We're doing ok - some days are better than others...
    Best wishes from FL ~ Rose

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    Replies
    1. Rose, it's been very rainy and windy here, as well. At times I feel as if I'm living in the Rain Forest; however, on sunny days walking down the street into center Haddonfield is a visual feast this time of year. You should see what the ladies of the Garden Club have done with some of our public gardens! Gorgeous!

      Always enjoy your comments. Thanks for stopping by, Rose

      Cheers, M-T

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  3. I am pleased that I observed this web blog, exactly the right info that I
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    ReplyDelete
  4. I enjoyed this so much. Wish I were there with you to have a walk along side.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad you enjoyed this, Katie Isabella. Wish you were here, too. You'd love the view.

      Cheers, M-T

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  5. Dearest Marie-Thérèse,
    What a lovely neighborhood you live in. Love that white dogwood tree of yours, agains the pink one of your neighbor.
    Spring is the most beautiful and colorful season, well the fall can have its charm too but this is the BEST.
    Sending you hugs,
    Mariette

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Mariette,

      I have to say that spring is truly a special season here in Haddonfield, but the colors of fall give spring some pretty stiff competition.

      Bises,

      M-T

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  6. Comment sent to me by my friend Anna:

    Love your new picture too. Just getting back from Hungary I saw so many beautiful roses of all colors practically everywhere. I am so jealous. We have been trying to grow roses for years but no luck. Having gotten rid of the last two bushes now I am giving up.

    xoxo, Anna

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You probably recognize the picture from Derby Day in May. I just cropped it. I wish I knew how to Photoshop, because there are a few little things I would like to fix, but for a cell phone picture it’s not too bad. I figured it was time for a more recent photo and something that looked like Spring.

      Roses are really hard to grow. Mme Mère had a real way w/them.

      xoxo, M-T

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  7. I adore small local shops and will go to them before a big box store. And also local restaurants before chain ones. Your pictures are beautiful and I feel that I am right there!

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    Replies
    1. There's nothing like having a chat with a local merchant. I learn so much about them, my town, my community and myself in the process. It's a beautiful thing!

      Glad I made you feel a part of it all, Cindy.

      Thanks for taking the time to comment.

      Cheers, M-T

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    2. Ah, lovely photos of a lovely town, M-T.

      I just returned from a walk across Central Park. City people need geenery too! (1) Went across town to exhange a new bag in a light blue (which I liked very much, but knew would get dirty) for the same bag in black. Alas, I love color, but wouldn't have liked the dirt after about a month) and (2) to pick up some cheap, yet delicious wine from Whole Foods. I won't walk over to the West side to buy wine alone, but with a double mission, it was a good day. (3) A beautiful charming walk and both aims accomplished!

      I love this time of year!

      Enjoy your weekind,

      Debbie

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    3. Debra,

      What a lovely account of your day. You need to do a post about that. I agree that things do get dirtier in the City, so it was probably the prudent thing to do to exchange your light blue bag for a black bag. I adore Central Park and my husband loves a run in the Park whenever we are there during opera season. It's beautiful all year round.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Cheers, M-T

      Delete
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