Saturday, October 27, 2012

Last of Europe: Guernsey and Jersey

After we left London, Jesse flew home and my boss and I went on to the Channel Islands.  Our first deposition was in the island of Guernsey.  We stayed at this charming hotel and I was able to walk around the city.

Guernsey kind of reminds me of a combination of the only other three European cities I have been to: London, Paris, and Venice.  It was small and quaint with narrow winding streets and lots of charm.

I also got to see an old castle in Guernsey, from a distance.

The weather was part of the experience I think.  London had cold rain and Guernsey had fog.  Even during my two hour walk the fog got noticeably thicker.  I should not have been surprised that we were grounded the next day.  We actually spent an entire day in the Guernsey airport, unable to take the fifteen minute flight to Jersey because the fog was so thick.  We finally did make it to Jersey in time for dinner, but I unfortunately had no time for walking around and taking pictures in Jersey.

The work portion of our trip went very well -- go team!  (This picture was supposed to be in front of Harrods, which we went to twice, but the incompetent photographer that I am, I only managed to get a sliver of the store in the top right hand corner of the picture).

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Cards galore

I have been making a bunch of cards lately because there are lots of birthdays and new home purchases to celebrate.  Here are three cards that I creating using Graphic 45 Happy Haunting line:

And here is a close-up -- love those cute trees!

Check out the Hens' Den blog for step by step directions.

Sunday, October 21, 2012


Jesse set a record today for his best half marathon time!  He ran 13.1 miles in 1:44:32 which, if you do the math, is 7:59 minute miles.  Way to go!  Here are a couple pictures from the race:

Thursday, October 18, 2012

London Adventures

The morning of our third day in London, Jesse went for a twelve mile run around London while I had a business meeting (you can decide for yourself which one of those two activities sounds more fun).  After lunch, Jesse and I went to the National Gallery museum, which was right across from Trafalgar Square.

The National Gallery contains quite an extensive collection of paintings over a lengthy period of time.  We saw paintings from a number of artists, including more famous ones like Monet, Rembrandt, and Van Gogh.  

We went to visit the British Museum the next morning.  We knew that we could only cover a small portion of the museum and decided to focus on their impressive Egyptian exhibit.

Of course there were mummies!

We even got to see the Rosetta Stone.

We were also able to squeeze in Jesse's obligatory McDonald's trip in between the British Museum and the Shakespeare play.

One of the neatest things we did in London was to see a Shakespeare play at the Globe Theater.  We watched the Taming of the Shrew, which invariably led to a number of jokes at my expense.  Still worth it!

We finished the day with a birthday dinner for Jesse!

Our last day together in London began with a trip to my favorite London historical site: the Tower of London.  We were treated to a very interesting tour by a very knowledgeable Beefeater (ceremonial guardian of the Tower of London).

We saw the crown jewels and explored the white tower where they have an extensive display of armor and military artifacts.

Of course, we had to take a picture of me in front of the spot where Henry VIII cut off Ann Boleyn (and Catherine Howard's) head.  Funny?  A warning to be an obedient wife?  Not sure!

We were also able to get a nice view of the Tower Bridge from the Tower of London.

We made a quick (blink and you would miss it) stop in Picadilly Circus to go to Lillywhites to buy memorabilia from various Premiere League teams for Jesse and his dad.

Our next shopping destination was decidedly more upscale.  We joined Nelson (my boss/friend) at Harrods, where we had a long and fancy lunch and perused expensive watches and clothes.

One of the many things we had to do while we were there was see a Premier League game.  We got tickets to the Arsenal v. West Ham game.  They played at the West Ham stadium and we sat in the West Ham section, so we rooted for West Ham so as to not get beat up (and discretely hid Jesese's Arsenal shirt that he bought earlier in the day in his backpack).  

It was a lively game and although Arsenal won 3 to 1, West Ham put up a good fight at the beginning of the game when they scored the first goal.  

We had a good time in London, and were blessed to be able to make the trip!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Hens' Den Newsletter

Morning everyone!  Now that we are back at home I have started scrapbooking again and wanted to share this layout that I created about our friends Brett and Hannah's visit to Albuquerque this summer.  

I used Simple Stories' Generations to create this layout.  Check out more layouts in the Hens' Den October newsletter:

Saturday, October 13, 2012

London Called

We have received an abundance of riches in terms of overseas travel this year.  We just got back from Europe, which is the second overseas trip that we have taken in the past six months!  This trip wasn't something we really planned on doing.  I was fortunate enough to have depositions in the Channel Islands, which got me a free trip to London, Guernsey, and Jersey.  Extending the trip to add a few days of fun and bring Jesse along for the ride seemed like a no brainer, so that's what we did.    

I have never been to London before, so it was fun to see all of the traditional sights.  We started off with the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben.

Next, we took a cool audio tour of Westminster Cathedral, which Jesse calls a cemetery because there are so many historic figures we are buried there.

We also stopped at Buckingham Palace, where we saw the cool guards (from afar -- we did't want to provoke them!).  

Our last stop of the day was the Tate museum of modern art, where Jesse pondered exhibitions such as piles of blankets, a TV screen with a fuzzy picture of birds chirping in trees, and a glass of water on a shelf that the artist insisted was truly an oak tree.  We don't understand modern art.

One of the highlights of this trip for me was the day trip we took to Bath.  I am a big Jane Austen fan, and even though I didn't subject Jesse to the Jane Austen museum in Bath, it was cool seeing places where she lived and wrote about.  We arrived to the serenade of a talented opera singer in front of a lovely church.

The main attraction in Bath is the Roman baths, which are the oldest ruins that I have ever seen.

The museum also contained some sculptures from the temple to Medusa that used to exist right beside the baths.

One of the must-sees for me in Bath was the Pump room, which Jane Austen wrote a lot about in a couple of her books.  We had high tea there, which was delectable with scones, clotted cream, and jam in addition to finger sandwiches, lovely deserts, and, of course, tea.

As you can tell from the first picture, the water in the Roman baths are no longer fit for bathing!  However, a spa was built recently that uses the same (treated) natural mineral springs to fill a number of baths and steam rooms, where we relaxed for a few hours.  The highlight of the spa for me was the rooftop bath.  Not surprisingly, the weather in England was cold and wet.  The rooftop pool was very warm and provided a neat contrast to the cool weather.  It rained on us a little bit while we were there, which enabled us to see a lovely double rainbow over a picturesque landscape when the sun came out (sadly, no photography was allowed).

We'll update you on the rest of our tour of London soon!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fall is Here

The weather is cooling down here in New Mexico and it has really been feeling like fall lately.  It is even cooler where we are right now, but I'll explain more about that later!  Right now, I wanted to share a layout that has some nice warm fall colors, which is perfect for these outdoorsy pictures.  This layout features Graphic 45's Happy Haunting Line, which I embellished with some Graphic 45 Staples. 

For closeups and more Graphic 45 projects, visit the Hens' Den blog: