• Travel

    Fill in the Blank Friday: The Travel Edition

    New mama Lauren of The Little Things We Do is busy lovin’ on her baby girl, so today’s blanks were created by Erin of A Symphony of Grace. She has a lovely blog, so take a peek and give her some love, too! This week’s blanks are all about travel – one of my big loves, and something that we are trying to make the most of while we’re living in the UK so to take advantage of the relatively short distance to all of Europe. (I love the fact that flying from London to Barcelona is slightly shorter than flying from Chicago to Orlando!) And now, let’s get to those blanks! 1.…

  • adventures,  An American in Wales,  Travel

    Big Fun at the “Big Skill 2011”

    Yesterday we spent the day outside Brecon at The Big Skill Rural Craft Festival. It was definitely a different kind of festival for us – and we had an amazing time.  The idea behind the festival is “to promote the rural crafts and skills that surround our beautiful countryside”. There truly was a really wide range of activities to try your hand at: stitching a saddle, weaving a willow basket, fly fishing (which Boo surprised the Hubs with – both that he wanted to try it, and that he was actually better than his daddy at it).  I’ll be honest – I missed out on a lot of activities simply…

  • An American in Wales,  Travel

    Dear So and So: The Late (Saturday) Travel Edition

    As I started to write this post, I realized that I was really racking up a list of grievances I had against my fellow travelers (and miscellaneous people I met) on my last two holidays, and that, really, I didn’t want to rant to you about this crap. I want to rant to them. But I can’t, not really, since most of them were strangers. Then I realized that they would make perfect “Dear So and So” posts. Only, see, Kat does her “Dear So and So” on Fridays. And it’s now Saturday. But then I realized that it is still Friday in parts of the US. So sue me.…

  • adventures,  Travel

    Sweet Corn and Summer

    What is summer without a parade? Well, it’s not the same.  Since I’ve yet to find a proper parade here in the UK, when my brother reminded me on our first night back in Illinois that the Mendota Sweet Corn Festival was going on , I dragged the kids there. Never mind that it was hotter than blazes and we were all seriously jet lagged… …especially when there is cotton candy to provide a much-needed sugar boost!!! To me, a summer festival in rural Illinois means: John Deere caps and …fair food (definitely not Weight Watchers friendly, my friends – and no, I still haven’t tried a deep-fried Twinkie. Or…

  • Travel

    Simple in Barcelona

    My little family unit is well into the first week of our “Great 2011 Med Adventure” – which I’m thankful we have the opportunity to experience – but I’m finding that the things that are sticking with me the most are the simple things. The quiet moments sitting on a park bench enjoying the view. Walking hand in hand with my 5-year old, listening to her chatter about what she sees. A family dinner, enjoyed at a slow pace because there is nothing to distract us, no pressing chores to do and no urgent need to be anywhere (sorry, Macy-pup, we love you, but your need to pee can cock…

  • adventures,  Travel

    Colors of La Boqueria

    I dragged a reluctant husband and one tired child (Boo) and one surprisingly bouncy child (Pea) down Las Ramblas in Barcelona yesterday because I wanted to see La Boqueria. It was completely worth the long, crowded walk ( although I’m ultimately pleased with our hotel choice in the less crowded L’Eixample neighborhood.) The market was energetic and colorful – I wanted to take in (and take home one of) everything! While I don’t think the Hubs much liked the crowds, I loved the colors and flavors of the market (and the kids loved the fresh juices). And this is my gratuitous photo post for myself.

  • adventures,  Travel

    A Morning in Barcelona, or How I Nearly Missed The Big Picture

    We started our day with a visit to what must be Barcelona’s most famous building, the Sagrada Familia. Work on this Roman Catholic church began in 1883 and is still ongoing – a point with which Boo was extraordinarily impressed (but any building surrounded by tower cranes is a sight to behold, at least in his eyes…) We all had audio guides, and the kidlings had a version just for them. Which sounds like a good idea… …until you are stopped 11 times with “Mommy, where is the ____?”. Which you cannot answer, as you have a completely different version and so the questions Pea was asking made no sense.…

  • adventures,  confession time,  Travel

    And Away We Go….

    Earlier this week, I wrote a post about travel. I love to travel. I also love to plan trips. I’m very good at the planning bit. Typically, there are lists involved. Lots of them. I like lists. What I don’t like is packing. Once upon a time, in a time long before nappies, schedules and car seats, I could throw things into a bag and go. (My favorite kind of trip is still the last-minute kind, I will admit.) Somewhere along the line, however, (quite possibly after I had been vomited upon during a flight, where I remembered to bring a change of baby clothes, but not mommy clothes) I…

  • Travel

    Home Again, Home Again (Jiggedy Jig)

    I have been up for approximately 26 hours because I cannot sleep on airplanes. I smell like airport. I have static-head from sleeping against an airplane seat and a paper covered pillow. (I know, I shouldn’t have, so let’s not even go there.) My house smells like dog. There is a dent in the wall where Boo rocked Pea’s glider rocking chair a *titch* too hard. I’ll be calling the painter/plasterer in the morning, which sucks. (They “forgot” to tell Daddy that they did it yesterday.) There is no food in the house. My kids have greasy looking/slippery feeling heads from the new lice treatment the Hubs tried on them…