Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Nana Anne's 96th Birthday

Lisa's mum turned 96 this week and family gathered to celebrate:

Lily and Hannah

Friend Mal's baby Aldous (with Lily's blanket Diti in the background)

Lily, Hannah and Dylan (cousin who lives in Wales)

Dylan

A proper garden party

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Surrey by bike

Kevin Rooney has stayed with us in Buckleigh House for a few days and has been subjected to Lisa's excellent cooking, allowing us all to be treated to specialties like Sunday roast. Lisa has a great 25-mile bike route that Kevin, Oli and I tackled on Monday. It took us through the woods to a tiny valley full of horses, cows and sheep, down a big hill into the valley, and along the canal to home. Photos are here:





Saturday, August 18, 2007

Quicks

Running out the door in a moment with Oli to head to Brighton for a music festival we will spend the day at with Chicago friend Kevin Rooney (saved up some money, quit job and is now traveling 'round Europe for some months) as well as Milford friends Ben Milner and Michael McAndrew.

Lily is out looking for blackberries in the woods with Nana Lisa and Papa Ray is out for a walk somewhere else.

We're thinking we'll be heading back to Barcelona in September in order to make the transition easier on ourselves, since we are already familiar with how things work there. It's a little unrealistic to just pick a town in Spain and move there when we're not even in Spain right now! So we'll do some further traveling on weekends once we're settled to see if there are any smaller places we'd like to try. We've found a house with a yard that we are very interested to rent in Barcelona and I am most likely flying out on Monday or Tuesday to handle those arrangements. (Anyone in Barca want to put me up?)

Otherwise, the Milfrod Kr├╝ met up last night from their unique corners of the world and fun was had.

More later this week when we go on a canal boat trip to celebrate Nana Lisa's birthday, which was this past Thursday.

~

Monday, August 13, 2007

We're alive...

...and in good old Milford.

Flights and all were fine (Aer Lingus is GREAT; service was excellent and the planes state-of-the-art), though we did miss our connecting flight and ended up spending three extra hours in Shannon, Ireland, but not really a problem. Oddly, Shannon seems like the American place to lay over. There were Americans everywhere and passengers on US-bound flights go through US customs and border patrol in Shannon before boarding, so in a way, it is treated as a domestic US airport...now you know.

On Friday Oli’s olderst brother Alex and his daughter Hannah (20 months old) came over to play. The girls got on very well; Lily pushed Hannah on the swing and Hannah kept bringing Lily her sippy cup whenever she came upon it. On Saturday friends Charlotte and Mal came over with their respective sprogs, Hermione (almost 19 months old) and Aldous (3 months old). Lily was pretty fragile this day.

Buckleigh House has turned into a real child’s paradise with toys and books ‘round every corner inside, and outside a sand play table (like in pre-school), swing, slide and pop-up gazebo.

Last night Lisa (Oli’s mom) and I went on a bike ride and she showed me all the sites of stories I have heard – the Seeley’s old house, the theatre where Oli did pantomine and Lisa directed plays, a friend’s house in the woods where Oli spent much of his youth. I have to say, it is so beautiful around here and the weather is so cool and balmy right now, I felt pretty Jane Austen-y sitting up straight on my bike, whizzing down hills in the woods and coming out on big golden fields bathed in sunset. The outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease that is causing several paths to be blocked off also adds to that Olde England feel.

Today Oli and Lily are in Brighton and I am home alone doing Spain research...and posting to the blog.

I’m starting to feel all nostalgic and old and sad and strange about what mine and Oli’s relationship and plans mean for our relationships with our own families and friends. Makes me feel a bit numb and unable to write properly, thus the simple factoids above. I’ll write more when I’m less jet lagged (still am after a few days of being here and after a month of house-moving activities) and more clearly introspective.

~

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Response

Our former Barcelona flatmates Todd and Matt recorded a video/song about Oli and I and put it up on Facebook.

We recorded the response below. Sorry if it's all inside jokes, but that's how these things go. I think you'll still get a kick out of Oli's guitar skills and our vocals. A regular Johnny Cash and June Carter pair, we are.