This Christmas holiday has been a lovely reminder of just how postcard-perfect the English countryside is, and how well the English celebrate the holidays! Every wreath we passed on a door was pinterest-worthy, the houses subtly decorated in a timeless manner, and each and every village we drove through was an inspiring ode to the season. We spent Christmas and Boxing Day in Northamptonshire with family in their newly-renovated home, and then went north to Yorkshire where we stayed at our friends’ working farm.
My brother and sister-in-law’s house couldn’t have been better for all of us adults and our children to get together. We filled our days with wrapping presents and playing by the crackling fire, drinking mulled wine and feeding their gorgeous chickens! C was once again over the moon to be playing with his little cousin, and spent a happy week filled with cushion-fights, jigsaw-solving and walks in the woods.
On our last day in Northamptonshire the snow began to fall, giving us all our last Christmas present. It’s not often that a half-Portuguese boy gets to play on fluffy white snow!
Rob’s hometown of Stamford is already the epitome of Englishness, the set for Pride & Prejudice with its romantic river-walk, bridges and of course Burghley House. The soft touch of snow on the town’s charming buildings enhanced its beauty, even though Charlie didn’t care for town-snow much, as it gets too slushy.
As we drove up towards North Lincolnshire the snow started to disappear from the landscape, replaced instead with glistening ice which became a bit of a challenge once we left the A64 towards the country roads.
We went for a walk in Hovingham, which has to be one of the prettiest villages I’ve ever visited in England. There was nothing out of place, each house a perfect haven of Englishness, and its school really stood out with its unique architecture and perfect setting.
C’s favourite thing in Hovingham of course was jumping on frozen puddles, although he also enjoyed the massive pub lunch!
On our our last night in Yorkshire, it was my birthday, shared with our friend and host (we’re exactly the same age!) and to celebrate, her parents cooked a fantastic roast dinner with what is seriously the biggest joint of beef I’ve ever seen in my life! Have a look on the photo below! We felt really at home in the warm and cosy farmhouse, where we could see horses grazing in the paddock while we ate our breakfast.
If, like us, you’ve moved abroad, you’ll understand the nostalgic feeling of a scrumptious roast dinner served with home-made yorkshires and a local ale in a country pub after a walk. Luckily during our winter break, we had plenty of those! Thank you to our family and friends for making our Christmas so amazing!
Where is your bit of country heaven?