Wednesday, 28 May 2008


We had the opportunity to go on an Eastern Mediterranean cruise and spend some time in Italy with Josh's parents and uncle. We had so much fun, the weather was amazing and thanks to a bout with the stomach flu we didn't gain any weight from all the amazing food we ate!
The cruise started in Venice... so we had a chance to visit this beautiful city again!
Our first port was in Bari, Italy (southeast). It was a fun to check this little city out. This was a shrine-like display... they were all over the city just on the outside walls of the homes.Our next stop was Olympia, Greece. It was great to touch up on our Greek mythology and to visit the sites of the first Olympic games... glad they don't compete naked anymore :) The girls and Grandma getting ready to race in the first Olympic stadium dating from 776 BC. This site was also used for the shot put event in the 2004 Olympic games in Athens.
Next stop... Ephesus, Turkey. The apostles Paul and John preached here shortly after Christ died. This was an amazing city. Archaeologists have done a great job uncovering and preserving it.
Our tour guide took us to a rug shop. We loved watching the women weaving the rugs. It was one of the neatest experiences I've had to date.
This is how silk strands are made... silk worm cocoons are put in water then pulled out. 40 cocoons makes over a mile of silk. This was a room where they pulled out the rugs for display. All hand made unique rugs! It takes the women over 8 months to make most of the rugs we saw. Next... Istanbul, Turkey. This is the infamous Blue Mosque. Istanbul is the largest city in Europe. The skyline is awesome... lined with the pillars of Mosques. It was neat to go inside.Hagia Sophia... this building has had a long history of religious turmoil... from cathedral to mosque... now a museum. Next... stomach flu!!! Argghhh. Josh felt well enough to go into Dubrovnik, Croatia for about 18 minutes. The rest of us were overusing our small toilet.We stopped by in Florence, Italy for a few hours to check out the mains sites.
The kids outside the Coliseum in Rome.

A view of Naples, Italy from a boat... on our way to Sorrento.

A view of Sorrento... a little resort town on the Amalfi Coast. The water was so clear! Pompei, Italy. This is a photo of part of the city with Mount Vesuvius looming in the background. This city is said to be the best preserved Roman ruins. Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD killing most of its residents and burying the city in 20 feet of ash... not to be rediscovered until the late 1800s.Another view of Pomei.

Saturday, 17 May 2008

The Lineup

While making dinner... the kids were in the garden lining up their bikes and cracking themselves up... not sure why... the joke might be on me :)

Monday, 12 May 2008

Brooklyn is 7!

Brooklyn turned seven today! Now we're counting the days until baptism. She is a lovely little girl... turning tweener really fast. She is so much fun to have around and we're blessed she was sent to our family!
Brooklyn's top 5 at 7:

1. Tooth Fairy (we've lost three teeth... and the tooth fairy here brings one pound... I think in the States she only brings one dollar)

2. Marianne (Brooklyn's baby friend that also lives in London)

3. HSM... if you don't know what this is and you have a daughter between 5 and 80 years old... you're so out of the loop!

4. Barbie mp3 player... with HSM on it of course!

5. Giving talks in primary and sacrament

Sunday, 11 May 2008


We had a warm Saturday... so we took advantage and spent the day in Cambridge. We went with our friends from North London that we have known since our BYU days. They have three girls the same ages as our kids so it was fun for all of us! He is an Oxford alum. so he could give us the inside scoop on University life in the UK.
Brooklyn and Marianne sitting on the branch of a weeping willow tree.
Me soaking up the sun... you can tell by my ultra white limbs that I certainly need it!
The girls enjoying an ice cream cone!
And the little ones enjoying their ice cream cones!
Not quite sure what this one is!The students walking around in their robes. Evidently they have to wear them to take their final examinations... total bummer... as if taking finals wasn't bad enough in PJs. The hood color represents the college they're in and what they are studying... or something!
So the big activity in Cambridge is punting. It seems similar to the gondolas in Venice... but as our guide instructed us... it is very different. Anyone can rent a boat and give it a try... not recommended on a busy day however... not sure how many collisions we had with others or how many people we saw fall in!
Our guide... somehow my friend, Allison, and I ended up in the seat looking up at this the whole time... and the guys and all the kids were behind us. (This one is for you, Kerry!)

Saturday, 10 May 2008

Platform 9 3/4

Ever been here???

Friday, 9 May 2008

What can you do in 60 seconds?

Some can run 400 meters in less than 60 seconds... some can swim 100 meters... some can do the days' dishes... others can make a really bad first impression in the same amount of time... still others can eat loads of hot dogs (also making a bad impression)... some can walk to school... some can give a 5-minute talk in less than a minute... some can laugh for 60 seconds straight... but two year old boys can...

Find mom's tomato stakes and attempt to knock down a bush... or

think of a clever way to pop a big balloon (by bouncing crazily while holding a pole)... or

sneak a box of cereal and dump it out on the sofa... and have a little snack... all before mom even knows what the heck is going on!

Tuesday, 6 May 2008


We had a bank holiday and went into Canary Wharf (a modern business area of London) and Greenwich. It was a lovely spring day and the kids had fun being outside.
The kids and me in Canary Wharf.

All of us on the Prime Meridian... kinda like the Equator but dividing the hemispheres the other way... for those of us who are NOT smarter than a 5th grader :)

The turkeys on the grass

Richmond Park

A friend (thank you Kerry!!) took us for a little ride through Richmond Park... formerly King Henry VIII's hunting ground... hence all the deer... now quite domesitcated deer!

Zack looking out the window at the deer

Me, the munchkins, and auntie Kerry

Guess there's no rugby today, guys!

Monday, 5 May 2008

Cinco de Mayo!!

We decided to have a little party for Cinco de Mayo... we thought some of the London folk might enjoy the food and festivities! We had tons of yummy Mexican food, a pinata (where the heck you buy one of those in London... I'm not sure... thanks Teresa), flan and a fun birthday to celebrate (a friend from South Africa who learned how to REALLY celebrate her bday).

Josh taking a whak at the pinata... with our party's spectators behind him... and I'm sure some onlookers from the windows of our neighbors.

Makenna doing the post-dinner dishes with Emilio (our half Dutch half Italian friend... whose wife is from Finland!).

Thursday, 1 May 2008

Spring in London???

I went to California for the weekend for my cousin's wedding... and left Josh home with the munchkins. How nice of him to be willing to give me a break! It was great to see all of my wonderful family... but ohhhh the California weather!

Upon my return... I learned that Saturday was the nicest day of the year... to date. So it looks like Josh and the kids celebrated by going to the park. Here is Zack trying to catch up to the girls as usual! Glad they had nice weather... for 24 hours! Unfortunately as I write this post... it is freezing and rainy! Argghhhh.