Saturday, January 28, 2012

Unexpected tea time

Dear Grace, 

There were only a couple things left on our London to do list. My first attempt was trying to see a play at the Shakespeare Globe Theater with Daddy. I literally called the box-office the week after they were closed for the season. Of course it doesn't open up until after we move. My second attempt was going to Kensington Palace. You and I would frequent that beautiful garden during the warmer months and I didn't want to waste precious outdoor time spent with you inside the palace. I waited a day too late....

Love, Mummy 

Kensington Palace had a huge fence around it since we've been here due to construction. We were excitedly approaching the princess museum inside, until we came across this sign...
Womp, Womp...
The sign did say The Orangery remains open. Don't mind if we do...
As we were seated, I looked at my watch. 2:00 PM. Perfect for tea time with my little girl. Thank goodness it was a very casual restaurant because we weren't exactly dressed for the occasion. 
There was even a cute explanation of the history behind tea time...
"According to legend, Anna Stanhope is the creator to tea time. Back then breakfast and dinner were huge meals and lunch was very light. Since Anna became hungry everyday around 4 PM, she had her servants sneak her a cup of tea and bread stuffs. She then began inviting her friends to Belvoir Castle for an additional meal at 5 PM. The menu centered around small cakes, bread and butter sandwiches, assorted sweets, and of course, tea. The summer practice proved so popular, the Duchess continued it when she returned to London, sending cards to her friends, asking them to 'join her for tea and a walking in the fields.' The practice of inviting friends to come to tea in the afternoon quickly picked up by other social hostesses."
"Today, afternoon tea is one of the most special times of day in London. An occasion one looks forward to  with a great anticipation and high expectation for a perfect experience."

Grace, I'm very happy I was able to share this traditional mommy/daughter moment with you while we were living in London.

T - 5 days

Friday, January 27, 2012


Dear Grace,

Copenhagen, Denmark was our last traveling adventure before we move home next week. We LOVED the city and had many random thoughts as we explored it. Their cafes are much fancier than your typical cafe. They have the largest prams out of any other country we have been to. The weather doesn't phase them- the huge bike paths were packed with people of all ages during rain and snow. We can only imagine how gorgeous it would be in the summer. On that note, we would love to go back not only in the summer, but with a group of 21 + year olds. There seemed to be so many cute restaurants and wine bars to close down. Apparently, you must be an avid runner to live in Copenhagen. Morning, evening, rain, or shine; (not that we saw any shine) people of all ages run. Picture balaclavas and spandex pants with reflectors. Enjoy!

Love, Mummy and Daddy 
A look down the world famous Nyhavn Canal/Street, which our hotel was very close to.  We could only imagine being here in the summer and sitting outside some of the cafes while ships came in to dock.
Walking up and down the Straedet, which is one of the longest shopping streets in the world without cars, or motor traffic.  It was simply beautiful and full of energy.  One thing to remember in Copenhagen, shopping is a privilege and therefore, shops tend to only be open for certain hours, and typically closed on Sundays.........boooo!
Picture walking on a keyboard at F.A.O. Schwartz Tom Hanks style, however, the quartet in the window played the notes!
The cyclists around town even inspired you. 
The picture on the right is of the old Stock Exchange called the Borsen.  It's Spire is made up of 4 intertwined dragon tales that go up 50m high.
Daddy was so excited to see the office for this specific tanker owner because he does business with them. We stayed at their hotel, the Admiral just a few blocks down the street. The hotel was decorated like a cruise ship. Talk about character and appropriate decor for the owners. 
Our Hotel......The Admiral
A picturesque view on our way to see the Little Mermaid. 
...and here she is...
Not to be confused with the Disney version, this Little Mermaid is based off Hans Christian Anderson's version. He was also the author of the children's stories, Thumbelina and the Ugly Duckling
Smile everyone!!! it begins to rain
Then we found our way into the Kastellet, which is a star-shaped fortress that surrounds a chapel, windmill, some barracks, and a museum.  It was beautiful.....even though we were getting rained on at the time.  
Good timing. We happened to see the changing of the guards which takes place at their palace, Amalienborg Slot, daily at noon.
The palace is also right next to the Marmorkirken, which is a domed church modeled after St. Peter's in Rome, Italy.
We finished our time in Copenhagen by going to the old palace of the Rosenborg Slot, where the Danish Crown Jewels are kept.  It was an amazing castle!
Our last trip while in London was definitely a good one.......even though the weather didn't cooperate.  A big thank you to everyone who recommended we come here.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

London Zoo

Dear Grace,

On a gorgeous, sunny Sunday we ventured to the London Zoo at Regent's Park. You were all smiles and constantly pointing at something the entire time we were there. We're looking forward to taking you to the Lincoln Park Zoo once the weather gets a bit nicer back home in Chicago. Enjoy!

Love, Mummy and Daddy

Which animal would you like to see first, Grace?
Sally, the camel had...2 humps!

What sound does a lion make?

Pinterest Party #3 : bachelorette card and bling

Pinterest follow through # 3: bachelorette card and bling
When I came across this quote on Pinterest I pinned it to 'my sister's wedding' board. It's a bit of an inside joke between us that I'm not going to explain here. I was pleasantly surprised to click on the attached website to find out that it's a card. Better late than never. It definitely arrived the day after her big bash. Oops! 
Pinspiration original sources:  card
My idea was to add these cute bling ice cubes to my sister's and the bridal party's champagne as we were getting ready. Not only did I forget to get them out of the freezer, once I remembered (the next day) they were close to impossible to get out! Not worth the time. 

Pinspiration original sources: diamond ring ice cube tray

If you haven't read the explanation of my weekly Pinterest Party, click here
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Happy Pinning!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

back home in Indiana

Dear Aunt Susan and Uncle Matthew,

We've heard, and thanks to you, have seen how much snow you had last week. Mom tells me you went sledding over the weekend with friends. I can't wait to play in the snow with you. One week from tomorrow! 

Love, Grace

Sunday, January 22, 2012

I'm Sexy and I Know It

Dear Lib,

Michael and I saw this, laughed aloud, and thought of you as we watched it tonight. It's Elmo's version of 'I'm Sexy and I Know It.' We cannot wait to finally live in the same city as you in less than 2 weeks.

xoxo, Kate

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Pinterest Party #2: asparagus

Pinterest follow through #2 : The best way to make asparagus. 
Quoted from a previous pinner, "The absolute best way to cook asparagus, and SO SIMPLE! Season with olive oil, salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese; bake 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes."

I know this isn't rocket science and I'm sure many of you are laughing at me, but I need baby steps when it comes to cooking. Thanks to Pinterest, I am inspired to continue to learn. 

My overall opinion: The previous pinner nailed it. It is the easiest and best way to cook asparagus in my opinion too. I always buy the thinnest asparagus in the store b/c that's Michael's preference. I also have to admit that I probably use way too much parmesan cheese. Boy, is this vegetable our current favorite on our dinner table! I know what you're thinking...asparagus pee, which if you didn't know, is hereditary! Not everyone who is reading this knows what I'm talking about or has experienced the smell. Who knew?
Pinspiration original sources: FOODA Well Traveled Woman
If you haven't read the explanation of my weekly Pinterest Party, click here
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Happy Pinning!


Dear Grace,

Daddy has wanted to take us the the British Museum ever since he attended his work holiday party in the large Egypt room. You wanted to walk hand and hand with me. Well, at least until you let go and face planted. We saw real tears and heard your loud baby cry in a very echoey room. You shook it off real quick and had a black and blue battle wound that lasted only a couple days. Enjoy! 

Love, Mummy and Daddy

The most famous thing we saw was the Rosetta Stone. (below left picture) Since it was written in 3 different languages, the Rosetta Stone helped people crack the code and secrets of the Egyptian language. 

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