Wednesday, November 10, 2010

London Calling

A few weeks ago, Sam and I got to take a whirlwind trip to London! Sam is teaching a class at his school for which he needed to be trained. The only training conference this fall was in London! He was required to go, and I quickly jumped at the opportunity to take a trip with half of it paid for! We were there for 6 days with 2 days of traveling, so we had to make the most of every minute we had!

We flew overnight into Manchester, a city in Northern England. We rented a car, freaked out at how the driver sat on the right side, and enjoyed a beautiful drive through the English countryside! We were soooo tired, but the drive kept us interested.
We then arrived in London where we were seeing things that we had only seen in books. I could not believe that we were actually looking at things like Big Ben! It's still all so surreal to me! Was I really there?
Westminster Abbey
Tower Bridge
Standing on the Tower Bridge - We tried to get as many red busses in our pictures as possible!
This is the Tower of London that is across the river from the Tower Bridge. It was mind-boggling to see these buildings that were hundreds and thousands of years old! This Tower was built in 1078.
Kensington Palace - where Princess Diana lived
Buckingham Palace
The London "Eye" - I wanted to ride it, but it was going to waste precious time that we had in the city since the lines were sooo long! (notice the double-decker red bus)
Random things I wanted to do: Take a picture with a red phone booth, walk across Abbey Road, feed pigeons in an English park, eat fish and chips and vinegar, and get my picture taken with one of those guards that can't make facial expressions - check, check, check, check, and check!!
We walked but it was so worth it! We saw everything we wanted to see in London in one day! The next morning (after visiting Abbey Road), we left for Sam's conference at Wellington College. It was about an hour outside of London, so we weren't planning on going back.

Funny story - one night after Sam had been in class all day, we randomly decided to go to Stonehenge, another hours drive away, just to say we did it. On our drive, we noticed the sun was setting quickly and that it was beginning to rain. However, the rain stopped for 5 minutes so we could take pictures and the sun stayed out just long enough to give us light! I'm so glad we went to see Stonehenge....but glad we didn't plan on spending the day there. What you see is what you get - big stones in a circle. Amazing, but not so exciting! We took our pictures and we went back to our hotel and called it a night!
We loved spending time in England! Maybe one day we will return! It just made me hungry for more traveling in Europe. Sam and I would love to see Ireland, Scotland, and Italy.... One day... One day....

And as they would say in England... Cheerio!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Trick or Treat!

Yes, I realize that Halloween was over a week ago, but I am just now able to catch up on life! I'm working on our LONDON post, but I'm going to start with Halloween tonight.

Ever since I got the Pottery Barn catalog with Halloween costumes in it back in August, I wanted Michael to dress up as a dinosaur. However, I was NOT going to pay $50 for a costume vest from PB. I decided I need to make his costume myself. It was the first time I have ever used a pattern, but I was please with the result!
Michael wasn't too fond of having the costume on around the house, but he loved wearing it trick-or-treating. I think it's because it kept him warm - like a big ole' Snuggie!
We went with some good friends of ours through a couple of neighborhoods in our area. We were pulled in a trailer, like a hayride minus the hay. So fun!
Our friends, Jamey and Stephanie, dressed their 4 kids up like Toy Story characters - Woody, Jessie, Exercise Barbie, and Bo Peep. They were adorable! Jacob and Robin's kids dressed as Snow White and Dopey. Michael was by himself as a dinosaur!!
I CANNOT wait to do family-themed costumes! If it's a boy, I want to have a Mario and Luigi one year. If it's a girl, I'm thinking Mickey and Minnie would be adorable! It'll be a couple of years before our little baby can walk around in a costume, but I love to think about it.

Michael got just the right amount of candy! He ate the pretzels and fruit snacks and I hid the rest! He has already forgotten about it! ha!