Obsessed: Lark Rise to Candleford

   I have a confession to make. I have a new obsession. And its called Lark Rise to Candleford.

   Lately there’s been so much sadness and terrible things in general in the news. I am one of those people that can internalize these negative things and work myself into a sobby mama frenzy. It’s not earthquakes, its Ebola. It’s gotten to the point where I’ve had to shut off some outlets to the outside world (although I’ll be honest, I’m checking up on the Ebola stuff in Dallas every single day….it’s like a nervous tick)

   In the midst of this, I’ve yearned for a way to just sit and be calm. Pretty dresses and flowers are welcome bonuses. I want things to get tied up happily (or as best as can be) at the end of the hour. Sometimes you just need these things. And for me, it’s Lark Rise to Candleford.

  The premise of Lark Rise to Candleford is small hamlet girl Laura Timmins moves to the local village of Candleford to work in the village post office. You meet different characters of a wide array of social classes and problems. But everyone’s got a story and a past. And its all set in the gorgeous English countryside at the end of the 19th century. Get me a sleeping baby and some knitting and girl, I am SET. 
   Some of the actors you will recognize from other British movies and television shows. Is that Mr. Bates, I see??? With Charlotte from Pride and Prejudice? 

   And while some of the story lines can be a little this side of silly, I’ve noticed that my family sure does seem to settle in and make themselves comfortable when I turn it on. Dare I say my husband will ask “so you wanna watch your show?”

   Another thing I love about the show— and the book— the show is based on the writings of Flora Thompson’s books by the same name— are the clothes and also– the gardens!

Photo from Filmscapes in the UK— really neat site about creating gardens for film sets!

   Especially in the little hamlet of Lark Rise where all the housewives are raising their own vegetables and medicinal herbs, the rustic cottage gardens are amazing. Yes, yes I am trying to work out in my brain how to make that stick fence happen in my back yard. I also love all the heirloom plants shown gone to blossomy bramble near the houses. It makes me almost hopeful that next year, darn it, I will really get to garden! Hopefully by then Robbie will be able to toddle out with me. Or at least hang out with Daddy while I sneak off to work outside. 

      I started watching this show through Netflix rental, but then learned that I could watch the entire 4 seasons for free online with Amazon Prime (hurray!) So if you use Prime, you are entitled to watching the whole season without any cost! Or you can order the dvds or rent through netflix.

   The book I just got is very sweet too— there are three books but there are many volumes that combine the three into one book, like the one I got. I bought a used copy because I can’t resist the lure of a 99 cent book, and it has beautiful old paintings and images of pressed flowers in the pages. I’ve heard these books compared to Little House on the Prairie— another “Laura” centered book, and these were written at about the same point in time.

  I highly recommend it. It does me good to settle in with a little bit of Lark Rise. Maybe you’ll enjoy it too!~

19 thoughts on “Obsessed: Lark Rise to Candleford

  1. oh sweet Heather! a thousand times yes to this post. i feel the same way about the news. i pretty much stopped reading all news about 5 yrs ago, and as a result, I am now the most ignorant person alive, but my anxiety is a bit better. :)Ok this show….has seriously been on my radar for YEARS. and i don't know, i was just worried it would be boring, but I know that it isn't and I just would forget and blah blah and now….I'm on it!!!!! I didn't know Mr. Bates was in it! I'm so so so starting this immediately.Lovely post!!!


  2. Oh! ( hold my heart ) I live in that word!!! And I have that very book, it is WONDERFUL!!! All those pressed flowers and lovely English paintings! (Hellen Allingham and such) Flora also wrote Still Glides The Stream ( there is an illustrated version as well) have you heard of it yet?Ah yes after me own heart indeed!!! 😀 Blessings and warmth, Linnie


  3. I too have never heard of this series but I loved Downton Abby and this sounds like a must for me. I believe THAT IS our Mr. Bates! Yes, for all the awful news today, I too have been turning off the TV which is weird because I used to be such a news-a-holic!! But how much bad news can one stand in a day? My recent TV avoidance has been to listen to Pandora and sit outside and knit and enjoy a cup of coffee and only have the occasional bird disturb my peace! Thanks for the tip on this British series I NEED to watch!!


  4. LOVE it, too. We've been rewatching the entire series over again and have had the book on my wish list for some time now. I'm intrigued by the book version you purchased. I love vintage illustrations. ~ Kelly (kellythecarelesscat on instagram) 🙂


  5. This is a wonderful obsession to have! I watched it first on PBS and then went back on Amazon Prime to catch it from the beginning. I was so sad when it came to the end! I adore both villages, Lark Rise in its humble surroundings and wonderful sense of community and belonging and the darling buildings and commerce found in Candleford in all its \”modern-ness.\” (Is that even a word?!)


  6. I just started it a few weeks ago – it's slow going as my 3 year old actually prefers to watch Project Runway with me instead of this! I know!I have a soft spot in my heart for anything in this time period – that post-Industrial Revolution/Pre-Great War time always has this great sense of character.


  7. So glad you love this programme. I too love all the period dramas we produce in the UK we seem so good at them. I'm now enjoying the new series of Downton Abbey and took some Australian friends to Bampton last week which is where the village shots are filmed. They all had their problems back then but news just didn't travel that far and so quickly in those days. If only we could be cocooned in their little worlds once again.


  8. Isn't this strange, I just got that book the other week for £2 here in England & am going to start reading it tonight, lucky me. Our Amazon prime does not have it on so hopefully I will receive it for Christmas. I can disappear in to Larkrise or Candleford, the sets & costumes are beautiful. I really enjoyed your post & I am going to make stick fences next year, maybe they are my one weakness.Fondly Michelle


  9. I am so happy by this post! We are kindred spirits, and sometimes I wish I lived in simple village like this with simple routines! I'm gonna visit Amazon and take a peek at the book! Thank you for a lovely post!


  10. Looks like the exact sweetness and traditional Britishness I always crave! What is it about British period dramas that makes them so delicious and exquisite. Ohhh this series is next on my list for sure!


  11. Yes!! I too devoured the series and still reference it often. I had the book for many years (found at random old book sale. I had no idea there was a series until my husband discovered it on Netflix. We both loved it, we tore through it causing too many very late nights.


  12. I wanted to stop in and say \”Hi\”. I've loved watching Downton Abbey and have wondered about this show. I don't have much time for blog reading, but am delighted that yours is still here.


  13. Oh my! I just found your blog through Christine at Memories of a Catholic Wife and Mother. I currently live in Minnesota but grew up in Sapulpa and went to TU. I, too am in love with Larkrise and am watching it for the umpteenth time with my older children.


  14. Oh, and if you are not already familiar with Susan Branch, you might enjoy her latest book, A Fine Romance, a watercolor journal of a recent crossing to England.


  15. I, too, have been obsessed with the series and have watched it all the way through several times over the years. I also love the book; it's quite different and yet quite similar. You can see where Bill Gallagher took just one line, or even one dependent clause, and turned it into an entire story for the TV series. Brilliant writing and character development.I thought I would point out that the book you have is an abridged version. I have both it and the original, and though the abridged does have lovely illustrations, one misses out on a lot by not reading Flora Thompson's complete work. It's enthralling.


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