Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Happy New Year

We continued to have a terrific holiday in NE England with a Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Year celebratory meal, Fireworks New Year's Eve, outings to Barnard Castle, Newcastle, the Hamsterly Forest, York (by train), and Durham.

We really relaxed and treated the week just as a holiday should be; RESTFUL! One of the main reasons we rested so much was because we all seemed to be passing around a horrible achy cold bug so everyone was run down. It was a great excuse to slow down.

Today, we are back in Glasgow, back to work, and back to school. Gramps had to leave to go back to work in the USA but we are enjoying Mims here for one more week. She and I are home today putting away Christmas stuff and catching up around the house.

Here are pics from the rest of our week! Holiday Dinner....btw, turkeys are harder to come by in this country. You mainly see them fresh not frozen and here in Glasgow, if you do not order one from the butcher....you are out of luck. We were in luck and found one at the Barnard Castle local butcher! Fresh and juicy!!! (I brought cornbread and pumpkin back from the states and Scott's mom brought us some of the ingredients we needed as well!)

This is the Angel of the North, a sculpture nearby Newcastle that is really fun to see. Check her out.......http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angel_of_the_North

That's Gramps, Ethan and Christopher showing us their Angel Span!

Fireworks that our friend Neil Watson gave the boys.....And the only three brave souls to be outside in the below freezing weather to shoot them! It was quite the display from inside though!

Toasting Mims and Gramps' 43rd Wedding Anniversary (a few days late...) and learning to pop the cork!

On our way to York on the train and at the National Railway Museum (fantastic if you are ever close to York).

And at the Jorvik Center learning how to play a Viking game similar to chess.....Ethan bought the game so we could play at home too.......

We all loved York. Mims and Gramps had stopped through York on their way from London to Edinburgh once and had seen the York Minster but we all enjoyed seeing that amazing cathedral and walking through the quaint streets of York.

In Durham, we could not get past this carnival ride without a few turns for the little guys.......carnival "fun" is the same worldwide I suppose...

And I've been meaning to take a picture of the Post Box and the Phone Booth. Just in case you've not seen one before......

One of the highlights from our outings was the Durham Cathedral where part of the Harry Potter Films were made. Ethan was encouraged by Aunt Amy FitzGerald to read the Harry Potter Series starting a few years ago and he kept saying he wasn't interested. She gave him the first book last Christmas and it sat on his shelf until this summer when he devoured it lickity split and begged for the rest of them! I bought the series for him this summer while in the States and I've never seen a 9 year old boy read so fast! He couldn't put them down and he thoroughly enjoyed each one. So you can imagine, when he heard that scenes from the movies (he's seen the first 2) were filmed at this cathedral, he was really keen to go! Much to his delight, it was just as he expected. The Cloister was full of movie imagery for Ethan and he was thrilled!

The cathedral itself is breathtaking but this sure helped keep the interest of 3 little boys who've now seen their share of cathedrals!

This was our sunset travelling home from Durham. Amazing!

And last but not least, this is Christopher enjoying "a cake and hot chocolate." You see, when we go for a coffee after school with a friend, we say we are going for a cake and a coffee. Don't think I've ever been for a cake and a coffee in Dallas with friends.

It was a fantastic trip, in a fantastic part of the world, at a fabulous holiday house! Here's to traveling in 2009! Happy New Year!