Entries from April 1, 2013 - April 30, 2013

Tuesday
Apr302013

The Brighton Loop, part 2

I kind of left you hanging I guess!? Sorry about that. How about I continue the Brighton coastal tour.
Here's a handy dandy map to help explain our little adventure better:

To recap, on Day 1 We took the EuroTunnel shuttle in our car from Calais, France to Folkstone, England (you can see the logo on the far right). We drive thru Rye and Hastings (my history buff readers might recognize Hastings and Rye is a CUTE little town that I wish we'd stopped and explored) and finally stopped in London-by-the-Sea (Brighton).

On Day 2, we headed WEST to Arundel Castle. Another cute town in West Sussex that boasts a castle that was having a Norman reinactment of sorts Easter weekend.
Before we left Brighton, I had to get these shots... :)


We did eventually leave Brighton, and head for our destination: Arundel castle. 1000+ years of history.
There's a small petting zoo, a 12thc church, an actual extention that is currently lived in by the Duke and Cuchess of Norfolk and lovely gardens all within the "compound". The best for the kids was the zoo, of course.. mostly farm animals you'd think of as from the UK, the meercats were the stars of the show! haha..

around the town of Arundel itself..

Finally, we had dinner at a propper British establishment (NOT a pub, as kids aren't allowed after 7pm, as we'd previously discovered in Ireland!), and enjoyed the sunset on the beach. All-in-all a great day!
And one shot of me and the hunky hubs.. :)
So, that concludes day 2. Next stop: the world's oldest aquarium and Leed's Castle!
Thanks for looking (despite my sporadic posts!) Many more adventures to come..

Thursday
Apr182013

fasten your seat-belts.. we're goin' for a ride!

The snow has thawed, spring has sprung, and it's time to EXPLORE Europe! Are you ready for some adventure??

The fun began on March 9th when we hosted a couple of Canadian teachers who were interning at the kids' school for 3 weeks. It was great to have them and it kind of officially ushered in the non-stop visitor/traveling fun that will be our lives thru summer. (*I'm officially soliciting visitors from Sept - Dec 15th bc I know we'll be in withdrawal after the non-stop action! Any takers?? ;)
here's a fun photo with the Peter and Matt on the way to school one morning.. we miss them, but not the snow! haha


So we said good-bye to the guys and headed to Brighton, UK for the Easter weekend. It was the start of the kids' 2 WEEK spring break and we just had to take advantage of the 3 weekend, of course.

Why Brighton in 5'c weather you might ask?? (And I WAS asking myself that over the course of the windy, chilly weekend!?)
1. it's an iconic place that was on my list AND within driving distance for a long weekend
2. there was a variety of things to do in the area: beach, castles, amusement park..
3. I found out there was an interactive Wallace and Grommit symphony perfromance for one night while we were there AND there was a Norman reinactment at one of the local castles.. so, it was a done deal!

We took our car thru the chunnel (thanks to our rock star dad who drives on the other side now like a pro) and were in Brighton by 10am thanks to the time difference.

First up, checking into our sea-side hotel and heading to the rocky beach. It's not Destin, my southern friends, but as you can see, fun can still be had :)

The iconic Brighton Pier..
We toured the Brighton Pavillion, an ecclectic beach palace of George IV that really made "going to the beach" a popular pastime in the late 1700's.
It really was quite different inside.. a lot of eastern influence and "Liberace-esque" :) Was bummed I couldn't take photos..
Afterwards, we wandered the quaint "Lanes", stumbleded upon the food and drink festival and indulged a little. We ended the day with the Wallace and Gromit's Musical Marvels at the famous Brighton Dome (Which used to be Goerge's horse stables before it was converted in the 1800's). We all LOVED the concert and it was a definite highlight of the weekend. It doesn't hurt that we have a budding barritone player in the family and if you can hum the theme song in your head, you'll hear that low brass quite often! if it comes near you, we'd highly recommend it!
So that concludes our first day in Brighton. As you can see, we had some blue skies here and there and it was a pleasant cold day at the beach :)
Check back for castles and meercats and more!