Wednesday, April 09, 2008


I'll readily admit to being someone whose mood is influence by the weather. And this early spring weather in England this year is bizarre. From one day to the next you can't be sure if you'll have sunshine, rain, snow or wind. And the wind has been insane this year! I guess spring is making up for a mild winter. We've had our barbque blown over by the wind. I have no idea how our neighbor's back yard tents haven't blown away.

It's nice to have Tommy home. This time last year I was preparing to say good-bye to him, again. I was crying in the shower every morning with no idea how I'd make it through my pregnancy alone in a foreign country. It really was a low point for me, to be honest. I'm excited to have my husband home for spring and summer. Last year he left right as it was starting to get nice and returned in the middle of winter. Nice.

So we've been taking advantage of Tommy's presence and doing a little bit of traveling in the form of daytrips. We'd love to see some other countries soon, but alas, the Embassy has not seen fit to send us a passport for the little pip squeak. Twelve weeks and counting!

We saw Stonehenge in March, which was really neat. For some reason I expect them to disappoint me by being smaller than I thought they'd be. But they lived up to my imagination. We also visited the city of Salisbury and saw their cathedral, which houses one of the remaining 4 copies of the Magna Carta. The reason it's the best preserved copy, according to the chuch, is that is was mis-filed in their library! Strange to think it would have been treated more poorly had people know what it was.

This past Wednesday we did a half a day (less, really) in Norwich. Norwich is only 30 miles north of hear, and is a nice drive up the A11. We had some issues finding parking and ended up spending a very short amount of time exploring the castle in the town center. It's 900 years old and was a prison for 500 of those years. It was kind of creepy seeing some of the punishment devices on display. It also made me realize just how small people used to be! I would have fit in nicely.

Then the next day we went down to London. I have to admit, this was my least favorite trip. London is very stressful, especially when traveling with a kid. Taking the tube with a stroller is an absolute nightmare. We did see the Tower of London, which was really cool. My favorite part was seeing the Crown Jewewl. GORGEOUS! Breathtaking, really. I'm such a nerd in that everywhere I go, I have to imagine I'm someone directly involved in everything I see. For instance, I have to imagine I'm a princess picking out my crown for coronation. Otherwise, why bother even seeing the crowns?! I wish they would have had fake crowns to pose in for pictures. As it is, NO pictures are allowed in the vault at all.

Then on Saturday, we went to Bath. I think Bath has the potential to be my favorite place in England. Sadly, there was an accident on the motorway on the way down which added two hours to our trip and took those two hours from our time in town. But we did get to do a walking tour in which I saw a house Jane Austen lived in when she wrote Persuasion and Northanger Abbey. And we did tour the ancient Roman Baths, which were really cool. We also saw the Assembly Rooms where people use to dance and play cards. I wanted to tour the Fashion Musem there to see the dresses from back in the day, but we didn't have time. I also wanted to tour Bath's Abby, but again: no time.

Driving down to Bath was really cool once we got close. The country side is just what you'd expect of England. Rolling, green hills dotted with sheep and country churches. Absolutely beautiful. This is why I wanted to move to England!

We wanted to go to Paris next month to meet some friends of ours, but it's looking less and less likely with the whole passport situation. While I know there will be other times to see it, I'm disappointed we may not get to see Jeff and Mandy and Wendy and Miles! Boo!

Anyway, I'm happy spring is here. I'm happy my husband is here. I'm happy to have these opportunities to see the world and really enjoy life in England. Caleb is healthy, happy and well. As of Monday he weighed 16 lbs 11 oz. He’s sitting up on his own (with occasional stumbles). He laughs a lot and will talk your ear off if given the chance. He loves the dogs and thinks they are the most entertaining creatures that ever lived. I couldn’t have asked for a cooler baby. Life is good.

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