What is wilson silverleaf? We're organitarians; it's best for our bodies and the planet. We cloth diapered Nina for the same reason. We drive a hybrid car & wish we could afford solar panels on our house. I'm a strong advocate for homebirth, full-time mom, & also a movie junkie. We don't have a tv though; we watch dvds on our computer. We love contradancing. I garden & knit; Larry's a puzzle lover & plays fantasy football.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

my new favorite thing EVER

It's the Aquadraw and it's brilliant. It's a cloth that has a coating on it that changes color when it's wet. So you take the included "pen," fill the reservoir with water, and you have hours of mess-free, no paper fun. The writing/drawings disappear when they dry, so it can be used over and over. And it rolls right up for portability.

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Sunday, May 27, 2007

London and Paris

A couple of days after my mom left my in-laws flew into London. We spent a few days there, after which we went to Paris for a few days. I took a LOT of pictures and am feeling overwhelmed by them. So I am going to wait to blog about the trip until we get home to the US. But it'll be good, I promise.

Saturday, May 26, 2007


Here is a video I shot of a lamb and its mama. She was bahh-ing and it was bahh-ing, they were trying to find each other. I only caught the end of it, but it was really sweet. Glad I'm not a sheep mama, though. It looks a lot harder nursing a lamb than a toddler (though it probably depends on your toddler).

Avebury May 12, 2007

Avebury has a stone circle that is bigger and more complete than the one at Stonehenge, and it's a short drive. It was WELL worth every minute. Everything about the place was wonderful, from the food at the cafe (gluten free as well as organic options) to the magic of the place itself.

There is a village built around the stones, as well as sheep pastured among them.

My mom took some really great pics there as well as the human made Silbury Hill nearby. Oh, and also a really cool chalk hillside horse. So pester her if she hasn't posted the pics soon.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

one more shot...

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Three Cliffs Bay May 11, 2007

We got up and had a lovely breakfast, followed by a short drive to Three Cliffs Bay for some hiking.

We parked up there somewhere

We found a bucket so Nina got to dig a bit.

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swansea May 10, 2007

May 10th we headed out to Wales. We passed through Cardiff and Swansea and headed to The Mumbles. It was raining steadily, so we walked around looking for wellington boots for Nina, with no luck. We ended up checking out the local castle, but not going in because it was closed. It looks really nice, though. We decided that since it was raining we should check into a hotel and find someplace to have dinner. My Lonely Planet guide suggested the Bayswater Guest House, with good reason, it was homey, and the proprietor was nice. He suggested a great fish & chip shop, which we really enjoyed.

Nina got to sleep in a "big girl bed"

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We got back and recouperated, washed clothes, and talked about where to go next. The original plan had been to go to Scotland, which I have been wanting to do for years now (partially, I suppose, because of Diana Gabaldon's books). After spending two days with Nina in the car, mom decided that might not be such a great idea (I could have told her, and probably did, that the 5-6 hour drive might not work). We could have taken a train or flown and gotten a car there, but since we had already rented a car for a week, it didn't make sense. Wales seemed like a better alternative, though I have to admit I was disappointed.

more Tintagel

After our trip up and down all the steps, we headed back into the town and stopped in to a lovely little gallery where we saw these amazing puzzles. When we got back to the parking lot we just barely got there in time to talk the meter man out of ticketing us. Lucky.

Then back to Bristol for a good night's sleep in our own beds.

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It is a long way up some very steep slate steps to the castle; I had Nina in the Ergo Baby Carrier (the best baby carrier/backpack I have ever used) and she slept the whole way up.

There are many ruins from many different eras; the island has been inhabited on and off for a long time.

I can't imagine being given as a teenaged bride to an old man and being brought here to this desolate place. If it was this cold and windy in the late spring, I can only imagine what it's like in the winter.

But as an afternoon visit it is breathtaking, powerful, spiritual.

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Tintagel May 9, 2007

I rained on and off on the drive to Tintagel, which is on the coast of Cornwall. Some of the roads are VERY small.

It's often hard to see what's on the sides of the road because they're mostly lined with hedgerows.

Here's the road to the path to Tintagel Castle

and here's our first glimse of the castle

I am a big fan of the Arthurian legend, which begins here at Tintagel. This is supposed to be where Arthur was born; Uther Pendragon was a king and fell in love with the wife of Gorlois, who lived in this castle with his wife Igraine. Uther was so besotted with Igraine that he asked Merlin to enchant him so that he would look like Gorlois and be let into the castle. Thus he was able to sleep with Igraine and conceive Arthur.

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May 8, 2007 Glastonbury

From Stonehenge we drove to Glastonburyand checked into Glastonbury Backpackers. At 35 pounds I think it's a bit steep for a hostel, but it was clean and quiet. We had the purple room, pictured in the lower left hand pic here. The water in the shower never got even warm, so that was a but of a bummer. It was a quick one for me and Nina and mom decided to forgo it. I got a big kick out of this sign in the pub downstairs. Very smart.

We climbed the Tor in the afternoon after we checked in, but I didn't take any pics. Maybe my mom will post some of the ones she took. Until then, you can see my posts about when Nina and I did it in September here, here, here, and here.

After my cold shower we went and had a lovely cup of tea at the Truckle of Cheese. Duly fortified for the day, we got in the car and headed for Tintagel.

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May 8, 2007

Mom and I rented a car; though she was a little anxious about driving on the left hand side of the road, she did really well. It was about an hour to Stonehenge from Bristol.

It was very windy but otherwise a lovely day; Nina said later that she had to hold onto the ropes to keep from being blown away.

People have told me that it's not very impressive, but I disagree. It's a pretty powerful spot. My experience if it is that it looks much bigger from far away (it really really does), and looks smaller up close, but is still intense and powerful.

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May Day

So...I pretty much have all of May to write about. So it seems like a Mayday parade is the perfect way to do that.

These pics were taken from our living room window.

It was actually a few days after May Day, but it was really fun to see them going by, making a ruckus.

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

pile o'crepes

Sundays mornings in our household mean pancakes or waffles of some sort. It's a tradition I grew up with, and it just feels right to me.

This past Sunday I decided to make crepes, but the first couple weren't very pretty, so instead of putting the carmelised apple and kiwi inside individual crepes, I layered the crepes with the carmelised fruit and sharp cheddar cheese and made a...pile. It was spectacular.

what's with the procrastination?

I bet you're wondering. My mom came to visit and we travelled all around, and you haven't heard much about it. Well, I will write about it soon.

In the meantime, check out my contribution to The Soccer Mom Vote this month.

I forgot

When we were in Oxford I saw some people paddling in an Old Town Canoe. Big Deal, you say? Well, it kind of is. See, Old Town Canoes are made in Old Town, Maine. Which is about a 10 minute drive from Orono, Maine, which is where I went to college. Seeing that canoe made me feel right at home (well, only a little, but any bit is welcomed).

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Monday, May 07, 2007

can you hear me now?

I think all of my mom's pics should be viewable.

Banker's holiday

Monday we took a bus tour of Bristol in the rain. We sat upstairs on the bus to see better and got soaked but had a great time. Even though she got markers and paper from Dave the tour guide, Nina decided to sleep through the tour.

Okay, it might have been a little more fun if it was sunny, but this is England and it rains sometimes.

It turned sunny in the afternoon and while Larry and Nina went to the zoo, Lorien and I walked around the mall and saw Castle Park. We came home and made a fabulous dinner of leg of lamb, mashed potatoes, sauteed cabbage and Yorkshire Pudding, with mushroom gravy. And don't forget the amazing chocolate pudding for dessert. This was a serious digestive enzyme meal. I am gluten sensitive, but sometimes it's worth the pain.

Tomorrow (Tuesday) Lorien and I are going to rent a car and set out for Stonehenge, Glastonbury and Tintagel. Stay tuned for what it's like to drive on the wrong side of the road. Right now I'm a bit anxious about it.

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