Wednesday, September 10, 2014

London - Day One

Last year we began the process of planning for a 2 week Mediterranean cruise, but soon added an extra few days to allow for adjustments to jet lag and luggage mishaps. Besides, with travelling this distance to Europe, it made sense to spend a bit more time in London. We had less than 72 hours, which was not really much, but enough to get a taste and to know we would love the opportunity to come back and see more!

The photos I am sharing are from my iPhone, iPad and Canon T3I, some I have shared on IG and/or Facebook already, but most have not been shared.

With over a year of planning I cannot tell you (although if you've ever planned a big trip before I'm sure you already know what it's like) how excited we were for this. Marvin and I had never been to Europe before!

Waiting in our seats, already boarded!

A token shot of Edmonton. We left May 10th, a very late Spring for us and our trees were just beginning to bud, in fact we even had a scant amount of snow fall that week! We were ready to leave and looked forward to seeing London!

The time difference between London and Edmonton is only 7 hours, but the flight was 9 hours long. Our direct flight travelled over Iceland and arrived at Heathrow at 11:30 am. This was our first glimpse of what we were about to see!

We stayed at Grosvenor House, across from Hyde Park, which was very comfortable and near most of the sites on our list of must sees.

After 1.5 hours of sleep (not solid mind you) on the plane, our first order of business was to get ourselves settled into our hotel room, freshen up and be on our merry way!
Before we could leave the hotel, I took this photo looking out our room window and pretty much squealed because I was so excited to be here!! A few text messages to family to let them know we arrived safely and then we were on our way to meet John and Tammy.
Our next mission - find a PUB!
Okay, so on our drive from the airport I couldn't help but notice ALL of the men walking about in their suits and bowler hats. Everywhere. Bowlers hats. (loved it). We were told it was the Cavalry Memorial Service. Needless to say, the men left a very good impression on me ;)
After walking around a bit and only a few blocks from our hotel, we ran into an elderly gentleman, who did hear us speaking about food and pubs! He directed us to the Market Tavern, not only did he direct, but told us it was the best Pub in all of London! Well, okay then.. I was pretty happy and felt quite lucky to run into him knowing I was going to eat well!
We walked in and found a seat at the back and were soon given a menu.
I have to tell you - at this point I had not used my camera for months, and in these first few hours I struggled getting my settings right. Wow... I wanted to take photos inside this pub and nothing worked. Even automatic... anyway.. I like the photo below although it is completely out of focus and over exposed. I believe the memory is what counts here...  
The menu had so many wonderful items to pick from and Sunday was roast day, but I couldn't wait to try the fish and chips, MORE importantly I wanted some mushy peas! I was pleasantly surprised. They had good consistency and lots of flavor! I might have to try and replicate this at home.
 Of course we needed dessert to finish it all off... I had the salted caramel and chocolate tart! Yummo!

 After eating and relaxing we decided to make our way back to our hotel. Here is another out of focus photo. I promise they get better!

Our intent was to stay awake as long as possible. We were aiming for 9 pm but found after sitting in the lounge for a mere 45 min we seriously were in need of sleep. By this time we were awake for 30+ hours. We headed back to our rooms and were in bed by 7 pm!
And there you have it! Our first day in London...
Thanks for popping by :)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Texas Has its Charms!

A couple weeks ago I made a painted wooden house at a class I took from Lisa over at Not Ladylike It was an inspirational class and I even brought home a couple extra blocks to practice and play with. I was happy I did because I painted this one to give as a gift.

On Sunday morning I got to meet Melissa from Daily Life - Bits & Pieces She had emailed me a couple weeks ago to ask if I was available to connect. I was thrilled to be able to say "I sure am!" Marvin and I met Robbie and Melissa at one of our favourite longstanding local breakfast joints, the Highlevel Diner. Melissa and Robbie arrived ahead of us which gave us some time to chat while waiting for a table. For those of you who read Melissa's blog, you will know her and Robbie were married in Banff, and I often thought how interesting it is that someone from Texas would get married in the middle of Winter in Canada. That isn't to say that people don't get married here in Winter! I just find it kind of fun that they would choose to, as I know their photos were shot outside and it would have been very cold! She said it does make for an interesting topic of conversation... no kidding!

There was no shortage or gaps in conversation. Melissa is charming, friendly and very easy to speak with (not that I was worried in the least); a truly genuine and kind hearted individual. We shared stories, and spoke of our travels and work. Marvin and Robbie hit it off as well, and if all works out we may be able to meet again in October when we travel to Texas.

I gave Melissa her gift, I know she loves yellow, so it was really a no brainer what color to paint her house! I painted the saying "home is where your heart is" along the sides of the block and told her it was a little something she could take "home" with her as a memory of her visit to Edmonton.

We said our goodbyes in the parking lot, and still chatted after that! It was a lovely beginning to our day!

Here's to blogging friends!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

bright lights... big city...



a big hello... from me... to you.
wow... we finally got our computer back... and so you can just imagine how excited I am to be able to see the photos I took from our trip to Europe in May on the bigger computer screen. I'm in photo editing heaven... (albeit this one, except for being resized, is straight from the camera).
I wish each and every one of you a wonderful weekend. It is suppose to be quite lovely here... I hope to sit outside and enjoy it... but in the meantime... I will be editing more photos ;)
Take care friends....

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Sunshine, sand, art and whales

Buenos Dias! or... tardes... noches? Good day wherever you may be :) It is a lovely sunny morning here and although we still have lots of snow on the ground... there is a feeling of spring in the air and it has me thinking of warmer weather and BBQ's! So to continue with the warm weather theme I thought I would share some photos of our trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, which was back in January. I'm warning, this is a photo heavy post.

Puerto Vallarta is on the west coast of Mexico, where the temperatures were a consistent 28 C every day.

We walked lots... and saw many interesting things. The Malecon offers beautiful sunset views, amazing food and entertainment. These incredibly ornate sculptures were everywhere to be seen and photographed.

We took a break to sit and pose with the sculpted chairs.

I wonder if anyone ever really purchases boots such as these...

We continued with our journey down the Melacon and observed this acrobatic type entertainment.

I was too shy to sit with these gentleman... they were like moving sand statues.

I have wanted to go whale watching for years and one might think with my fear of water and all, it might not be on my bucket list of things to do. Well, I was thrilled to bits. I made the decision to not take my camera with me as I wanted to spend my time enjoying what I was about to see instead of worrying about the camera settings etc... so the next three photos are from the tour photographer. 

Before we set out that morning, our tour guide mentioned they had not seen any breaches for 5 days. She told us to keep our hearts open and to have no expectations. It was breathtaking... and we must have had a boat full of open hearts as these humpbacks put on a show... 

This one flapped his tail at least 8 times in a row...

At one point we were stunned at how close we came to this whale surfacing, you can see our guide telling our skipper to back it up!
We saw at least 15 breaches that morning... 8 of them repeatedly from one whale... incredible to say the least!

One afternoon we did the Art Gallery Walk, there are so many galleries in Puerto Vallarta, and lots of art to see.

Most evenings we sat in the hotel lobby to take in this incredible view and to watch the sunset...

And with that I will wish you all a great week ahead!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Month In Numbers | 2014 Wrap Up

Well hello there :) I'm still having computer issues, but I thought I would try and see if I can post something.

Last year I managed to complete a whole year of Month in Numbers and found by putting the numbers on a consistent layout design, it kept me on track with keeping up.

If you do not know what  Month In Numbers is, it's a meme started by Julie Kirk over at Notes on Paper. You can see her thoughts and ideas on what you could include in your own Month In Numbers if you look here.

Here is December's layout...

What a busy month December was! I received a Silhouette Cameo for Christmas and you will see on this layout a couple cute cuts, the Santa and his sleigh as well as the deer. Unfortunately is was shortly after this I had problems with my computer and have not been able to use the cameo since! Oh well, I'm a fairly patient individual ;)

November's layout was lots of fun to create...

For the most part I tried to keep count of the same thing each month with a few additions. The red cup is another silhouette cut from the silhouette online store and let me tell you there are so many interesting things there!!

October's numbers...

Overall, I was really happy to be following along with Julie's Month In Numbers and although this year I have not been creating anything specific, I'm kind of missing this little project, so you never know, I may do a blog post every now and then with our numbers :)

Take care friends and have a wonderful evening, or day, where ever you may be!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Computer Issues

Thank you to all who commented on my last post! You are all amazing and I'm so thankful you popped by to say hello :) 

Well wouldn't it figure as soon as I decide to blog more I end up having computer problems! So we will see how well blogger works on the iPad. 

Here is a bit of a peak of my Month In Numbers which I will share once things are back to normal!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014 | A Fresh Start

Happy New Year!

I love facing a new year and I have so many things to look forward to. Although it has been several months... hmmm 5 to be exact...since I wrote a post here, I feel really good about this year. I sort of got use to not writing which is strange because I know I have lots to share... my Instagram account is a good indication of that :O) This past month I have been thinking more about this space and my lack of presence and it has compelled me to take a good look at what I want to accomplish this year, not only here on my blog, but life in general.

This is a list of goals for 2014:

1. Blog. In the coming weeks I plan to see what is realistic. I believe in goals, but there needs to be a planned process and I have already started a few things to help this along.
2. Scrapbook. The past year I have made more scrapbooking layouts than I ever have in any previous year (I will let you know how many once I complete my December Month In Numbers!).
3. Read more. Last year I read maybe 9 books which is quite a bit less than what I hoped for. I still have several books I purchased at the beginning of last year, not to mention those on my Kobo, so I am staying away from the bookstore for now and focusing on those items I already have.
4. Exercise. Well, this might be why I haven't been around so much the latter half of 2013! I started working out with a trainer 2x/week and I also took up Kickboxing another 2 nights a week. This really does take up 4 complete nights for me. That is okay though. I'm committed to this one.
5. Meal planning. With all this exercise I have been doing, the weight is coming off, but not as quickly as I want it to. I will start sitting down and make a plan for our weekly menu.
6. Project Life. I finished my second album last week and cannot wait to start my third year. It's got it's ups and downs, but I love the end result.
7. Instagram. I plan to continue posting to IG. It's easy and I have met so many inspiring and friendly people. Plus it's been a great way to connect with friends and family.
8. Photographs. I really want to pick up my camera more often and be deliberate with this. It's so easy to use the cell phone (which I plan to continue), but I found last year, more and more at gatherings or events I did not even bother taking my camera with me. That's about to change.

That looks like a pretty good start to 2014! What about you? Do you have some goals for the new year?

I can see the light shining... 2014 is going to be awesome!

Take care friends!