My very good friend Beth came to visit me this weekend. What a treat! I have known her since I was a scrap, but we usually only manage to coincide over the major holidays: Christmas, Easter etc, with just about enough time for a drawn-out coffee. Diagnosis: not good enough. Treatment: girly weekend in Sheffield; spending some quality time together and giving her a break from the Big Smoke.
It is so lovely when you see old friends. You could spend hours planning exciting things to do together, but the best times are always those when you can just rabbit-on endlessly to each other and we definitely did a lot of that!
The weather was absolutely glorious on Saturday, so we had a delightfully meandering amble down to Sharrow, via the beautiful Botanical Gardens.
The gardens make such a lovely haven from the busy roads that run so close by them. Being there brought back so many memories from my first year at university. I lived just around the corner from the gardens and used to regularly go there to escape from my work.
The gardens were just as I always loved them - alive and bursting at the seams with beautiful, spring flowers. I love how Magnolias manage to be so robust and yet so delicate all at the same time.
Once we had got as far as Sharrow, we decided that it was high time for a treat, so we indulged ourselves with cupcakes from Fancie - Sheffield's answer to the Primrose Hill Bakery.
They make seriously good cakes, although I can never handle all of the icing and usually donate it to the especially sweet-toothed of my friends. This time I went for raspberry and almond, which was very light and summery.
Me...me...me...I do...I do...I do!
Sharrow has lots of lovely little cafes and shops, including several that sell vintage and reclaimed items. I was just walking past one such establishment, when I spotted this bad boy. I fell in love with it immediately and it is now home to my back catalogue of Country Living magazines (seriously guilty pleasure), whilst it waits for the return of my knitting, which is currently somewhere alone and abandoned, in France. Whoops!
The rest of the weekend was spent talking and eating(surprise, surprise) and ended with a lovely walk through Bole Hill Park, which has views over to the Loxley and Rivelin Valleys. Such magical names. Such beautiful places.
It was, as my Great Aunt would say 'black our Bill's Mother's' and it did rain, but in a way, that made it even more delightful.