wales

My English Experience – Week 2

Continued from My English Experience – Week 1

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OK so now we are on our way up to Binbrook where some of our family live. We will be staying the week with them and celebrating Christmas together. To the left is the view from Mum’s house.

On our way there we stop off at Stratford Upon Avon, the home of William Shakespeare. This is a lovely, old world type town with lots of quaint shops and at the

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moment a street market was going on. I bought a few extra gifts and dared myself to try something new. I bought a sausage roll type pastry that was filled with rabbit, partridge, pork, venison & pheasant. I thought that it might taste a bit gamey … but it didn’t .. it was really good and I’d

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definitely have another!

So we continued our journey north and finally arrived in the early evening. Worn out from the busy week… I remember stopping in to visit my sister in law and all the kids for a while and then we all ordered take out from the local chinese place and called it a night.

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Day 2 up north we traveled to the city of Lincoln and took a tour through the Lincoln Cathedral. Wow! The cathedral was massive and absolutely beautiful. Stained glass windows that stretched toward the sky towered over us as we made our way through the cathedral. This building was constructed in 1092 … ummm that’s over 900 years old!!! Amazing.. absolutely amazing!

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After our cathedral tour we ventured down the steep hill of Lincoln to do a little shopping. OMG.. that hill is as steep as I have ever seen! Once you get to the bottom.. the terrible part is.. you have to go back up! The shops were awesome… I found a great little rock shop where I purchased a few crystals for myself and something for my hubby. We stopped for some lunch and a cuppa at the bottom before making our way back up that hill. Thank goodness! I needed the rest..lol. After that it was back home to plan the following day.

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Day 3 up north, we gathered all the kids up and headed to a place called Hull. We had to drive over the Humber bridge  to get there and this bridge is something I have never experienced before and dare say I don’t mind missing it. This bridge actually sways in the wind as you drive over it and the guard rails around it are tiny. I was glad

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to be over it but knew that it wouldn’t be the last time because we did have to get back home afterwards. In Hull we visited  The Deep, an aquarium and it was great fun with all the kids.  There really wasn’t anything else in downtown Hull that was worth seeing so back home we went to plan out our next adventure.

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Day 4 up north, we ventured off to York where we found loads and loads of lovely shops on cobblestone streets. I LOVE THIS PLACE! We found lots of gifts and had some lunch at Bella Italiano. The tiny cobblestone streets lined on either side with shop after shop was heavenly. It was a step back in time and I can imagine back in the day all the english folk dressed in their garb of the time walking up and down these streets daily doing their shopping and visiting. I would visit York again and again.. a definite must see!

Day 5 up north was Christmas day. Up early to open pressies that Santa had dropped off, then some proper english breakfast and then we nipped around the corner to see the kids and deliver more pressies. I had come down with a nasty head cold so I found myself a nice warm bed and took a nap before dinner while everyone else walked down to the village pub for a pint or two. Christmas dinner was very different than what I’m use to in the states.  It was lovely and lots of fun. Christmas crackers were popped open, paper crowns were worn on every head and wine was dispensed all around and around and around and…. around!

Day 6 up north was our last. It was an easy day for us that day. Our only down day where we weren’t running here and there. We had a nice meal at The Click’em Pub down the road and had an early night for our travels the next day to Northampton.

Continue reading – My English Experience – Week 3 – London

Many Blessings,
Raventalker

My English Experience – week 1

So now that our holiday in England  is over with I’d like to share with you all my experiences along the way. (WARNING: this post may be long)

When we first arrived at the Gatwick airport we were greeted by a magpie in the parking garage (unfortunately I didn’t get a photo) just near the car. I knew then that this was going to be a great trip! Mum right away said hello to the Magpie and said “we always say hello when we see a magpie.”

Here’s a bit of English superstition as to why she does this: One should make sure to greet magpies when they are encountered in order to either allay bad luck or encourage good luck, as related to the number of birds and therefore their place in the Magpie poem. Common greetings include “Hello Mr Magpie” “How is your wife/where is your wife?”, “Good Morning/Evening Sir” and other marks of respect.

And there is the rhyme that comes along wit the Magpie :
One for sorrow,
Two for joy,
Three for a girl,
Four for a boy,
Five for silver,
Six for gold,
Seven for a secret never to be told.

And this was before we even got in the car!
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Our first destination was Stonehenge, we were just an hour and half away… so this was our first stop. From the car it appeared much smaller than I had imagined but when walking up to it … it was much larger. One of the stones facing the pathway that leads you up to it had a face on it … THIS I shall never forget!

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There were ravens all over the place and well you know me …  that was my sign that I was were I belonged. We walked around the entire thing taking photos at every angle and then made our way back to the car park. Goodbye Stonehenge, thanks for the experience. As we left Stonehenge and began making our way to Devon…. a rainbow appeared. More verification that this trip will be wonderful.
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Our next stop…. Devon. We have rented a cottage for the week with Mum, Dad, Tina, Gary and Ben and can’t wait to get there. It has been a long journey for my hubby and me… at this point we have been traveling over 24 hours straight and can’t wait to be out of the car.

Devon is located south west in England and is now one of my very favorite places to visit. The cottage was lovely. The building use to be an old threshing barn and is over 600 years old. The street taking you to the  cottage was build by the Prince of Orange over 1,000 years ago. The cottage was quaint and warm and had everything we needed for a relaxing stay. We stayed in the Devon area for 5 days, each day venturing out somewhere new to explore.  On our first day we walked down to the seaside, where suddenly I didn’t feel so well. Lucky for me the fellow that keeps the cottage showed up at the cafe where we had stopped for tea and offered to take me back. Thank goodness that only lasted for the day.. I was up and much better by morning and ready for our next adventure.

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Day 2 in Devon lead us to several places. We traveled first to a village called Cockington. It was a lovely old world type village with small narrow streets, thatched roof buildings and artisan shops. We walked all over the area taking photos of everything including a funny squirrel near the car park.

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Our next stop on day 2 was the seaside at Paignton. It was a beautiful sunny day .. but being December not many were out at the seaside. We took a walk along the pier and played a few games in the arcade and then grabbed a bit to eat at the cafe there. After our tea we walked along the beach in search of sea glass (my idea). I had everyone looking!

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Our final stop on day 2 was  another seaside village called Brixham. This is a port filled with boats of all sizes. Seagulls soared above as we explored the area. Brixham was filled with lots of great shops that I think we visited each and every one! When we arrived we were greeted by a fantastic rainbow! I would definitely visit Brixham again!

Back to the cottage for some dinner and relaxation.. oh and lets not forget another quiz by Ben.

Ben, our nephew, would create a quiz each night for all of us to do… it was lots of fun and lots of cheating took place…lol

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Day 3 in Devon we traveled to Cardiff, Wales to meet up with Auntie Lynda and Uncle Tim.  We all met at St. Fagans, the Museum of Wales History. This place was no ordinary museum, this place was massive! St. Fagans is an open air museum on 100 acres in Cardiff. The have taken various buildings from all over Wales and from different decades/centuries and moved them to the location at St. Fagans. I would definitely visit St. Fangans again and again. We spent the entire day there and still didn’t see everything.  It was great meeting Lynda and Tim for the first time and I look forward to hanging out with them again.

toby carveryAfter leaving St. Fagans we stopped off at a Toby Carvery for dinner. This is where I had my first taste of yorkshire pudding. The carvery experience was great and very filling … I couldn’t have eaten another bite!

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Day 4 in Devon we traveled to Cornwall to visit The Eden Project. The Eden Project is a massive working and learning center geared around sustainable living. There are 2 giant bio-domes filled with plants and trees from all over the world. Our visit was in December so the garden grounds outside the domes weren’t in bloom.. I can only imagine what it would look like when everything was in full bloom. It took us all day to tour the grounds and I’m sure we missed a few things. There were lots of workshops for children and adults both to take part in. For families with children…. it’s definitely worth seeing.

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Well that’s the end of week one in the UK. The next day we checked out of our cottage and headed for Binbrook in the North.

Continue Reading My English Experience – Week 2

Many Blessings,
Raventalker