Monday, 23 February 2009


As we anticipated Caroline would be the first to pick up an English accent. In the past couple of days her language is peppered with a British flare. We first noticed it when she was talking about the shapes she is learning in school – cylinder. She now says cylinda – turning the e into a and dropping the r. This change is carrying into water, there and firefighter.

Both girls like to use the British version of words when possible – rubbish bin for trash can, knickers for panties and trousers for pants. This certainly comes from school and hearing different references all day.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

Weekly Report 5

We had a nice week of settling in. We have our morning routine and school run down. We understand why the British are obsessed with the sun and sunny vacation destinations. Just when I thought I might crack – the sun came out for several hours.

My big event was driving for the first time. It was not that different. Driving a standard came back to me like riding a bike. The hardest part is not being able to look at the map and drive. So I had to pull over a few times to check my route. My pride was quickly diminished when Brent received an email busting me for driving in the bus lane. I really need to read up on the rules of the road. We do not yet know the extent of the fine.

In certain areas the school here is about a year ahead. Caroline is making great strides with reading and is catching up quickly. Mary Kate is the class maths ace – so much for all the reading flash cards I flashed at her since birth. If only that would transfer to cursive or “joining up” as they call it.

Mary Kate received a big compliment from her PE teacher. He said the football club was turning around now that she is here. Who would have thought a child of mine would ever receive kudos on physical ability!

We wrapped up the week with our half term trip to Paris. Pictures and details following…

Friday, 13 February 2009

My Wobbly Tooth

We had a most exciting dinner out tonight. A couple of weeks ago we noticed Caroline's first wobbly tooth. Tonight it was hanging on for dear life and she could wobble it with her tongue. Made for lovely dinner conversation - especially when it started bleeding. After much dreaded anticipation Brent calmed her down and she pushed it out with her tongue. Once she realized it did not hurt she was very smiley and excited to be a big girl.

Rumor has it the Tooth Fairy brings gold coins in London!

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

It's a...

BOY! Can you believe it? And he is perfect! He was curled up when the ultrasound started, then began squirming and moving around. He has 10 fingers and 10 toes. His measurements are right on for 17 weeks. His spine in closed and looked like a string of pearls. Babies, especially healthy babies, can not be taken for granted so we are very grateful for this blessing. I had feeling he is a boy but had a 50/50 chance of being right. I always wanted a girl and we have two. So a son is icing on the cake! Now I get to learn about snips and snails and puppy dog tails.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Weekly Report 4

Our week started out white! (See prior post) After the snow our week was very quiet and routine. There is word we have not said in weeks. The weather was wettest and coldest since we arrived. But we have found with the proper gear it is not that bad.

The most exciting event of the week: the internet was installed!!! The installers were very late which in turn made me very late to pick up the girls but at least we back to the 21st century.

Caroline was the first to notice my stomach is getting big. Suddenly I went from looking like I've had one too many croissants to looking pregnant. I feel silly in maternity clothes but I felt even more silly at yoga class when the instructor said to cradle your baby. Who wouldn't feel silly cradling an avocado? The baby books now refer to fruits and vegetables to help visualize the size of the baby. Maybe too effective in my case.

We live two blocks from a large park - much like Central Park. On Saturday we pulled on our Wellies and trudged through the mud and slush. There were loads of people in regular shoes. I'm not sure how they saved their shoes. The girls had fun not minding puddles and pits.

Monday, 9 February 2009

The White Snow of London

We woke up last Monday morning to this...

Street View

Garden View


Brent and the girls stayed home for the day. Public transport shut down. There was outcry because city officials were not better prepared for an event which has not occurred in 18 years. In the South we are happy for stay at home day or two - we were here too!

The White Cliffs of Dover

We took our first day trip to Dover. As we were leaving the city we saw a few flurries but did not think much of it. We took the loop around and went to the south east coast of England to the English Channel. This area is not to most scenic in England but we were pretty impressed. We went through a couple of patches of heavy snow fall and wondered if we should turn back but we quickly passed through the patches.

On the way to the Cliffs we saw the Dover Castle. The winds were blowing and it was bitter cold. We ate our packed lunch in the car. Then braved the weather. We could see France in the far distance - this photo is zoomed.

We have to admit we were disappointed. The best view of the cliffs is not from above. Movies show the approach from the water so our view was not the same. But the walk was beautiful looking over the water and seeing the horses.

We decided try driving across London rather than around the loop to go home. We recommend avoiding central London road whenever possible. We arrived home safe and sound but it was not pleasant.