Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Blenheim Palace

This massive and beautiful home belongs to the 11th duke of Marlborough and was the birthplace of Winston Churchill.
It's close to Oxford, in a small Cotswold town called Woodstock.
It makes for a nice day trip.
The day after Jerr's 30th, we picked up our friends, James and Elnaz, and went to check it out.

We were all surprised by how elaborate and beautiful the grounds and the palace were.

We spent the better part of an afternoon there and we didn't even see inside the Palace. It was such a nice day we stayed out in the grounds.
(We try to save Museums and other fine houses for rainy days.)
They had a jousting event on the south lawn we were able to take in. And the show "Restoration Roadshow"- which was filming on the grounds- asked the four of us to stand in the crowd and mill about while they restored antiques for the BBC 2 series.

Just Another Soggy Weekend...

...in Birmingham.
For our first weekend adventure in August we went to the
Bull Ring in downtown Birmingham.

It's a massive mall, next to a High Street, next to Chinatown, next to a really
fantastic Market. So many fun shops to explore!

Here's us huddled under an umbrella as the rain started up again. We
were having toasted baguettes at a little sandwich place we found, and decided to sit outside and enjoy the liquid summer.

ah... Starbucks is everywhere.

A very modern Selfridges department store next to a very old church.
(I'm in this shot, with my hands in my pockets.)

The 30th Party.

August 7, 2009

Jerremy has turned 30.

We celebrated with a game of tennis, a nice dinner, apple crisp, and presents from family.
The birthday wishes from friends was one of the highlights of Jerr's birthday.
Before the big day, I emailed friends and family and compiled a classic 'cut & paste' Word document with all the notes they sent back.
Right before crisp, I opened it and Jerr was able to read all the messages.
It really meant a lot to him.
To top it all off, the weather was really great the whole weekend.
A perfect way to bring in his 30's!

Upton-Upon-Severn Blues Festival

Upton-Upon-Severn Blues Festival

We decided to use one of our free weekends in July to check out one of Upton-Upon-Severn's Festivals. This one happened to be free, but is the only festival without a parade.

But there were plenty of beer gardens featuring local brews. And the weather was fairly nice so we were able to sit out and enjoy the music.

We also walked around town and enjoyed the shops.

True to our Seattle nature, we found two coffee travel mugs for a pound each at a knick-knack sale going on in the community center.

We also engaged in some good British chats. (An older gentleman complimented my nice white teeth.) He was quite surprised we had moved over and were not merely vacationing.