A Good Ol' London BBQ

Get in Line...
May 2007

My iTunes: Traveling Soldier by Dixie Chicks

WOW....what a day! My legs are killing me from the miles we walked all around the city on this whirlwind tour we are attempting. I have lots of shots to share that I am pretty excited about but I am starting with what we did last tonight.

You can tell by song up top that I am in a country mood tonight...there is an explaination below...

Two words that do NOT go together in my world are BBQ and London....at least not until recently. Born and raised in the Southern US, I take my barbeque very serious! My husband and I found this restaurant in the Soho area of London called Bodean's...it boasts "authentic American-style" BBQ...from ribs to pulled pork (and don't forget the 5 Coors Lights in a bucket for 10 pounds). Although I couldn't wait to try the food, I have to say I was skeptical on our first visit. To my surprise, I was completely blown away at how great the food tasted. Their menu included beans, sweet cornbread, and homemade coleslaw. The only essential item missing on the menu was real sweet tea. I think I can let that slide...for now anyway. :)

I snapped these photos while we were there tonight. Peg and Keitt (John's sister and brother-in-law) took us there and it was such a treat for us! Thanks guys! This post is my official recommendation for anyone who lives in or near London....or anyone planning a visit. You will not be disappointed if you make time to come here for lunch or dinner!

Tomorrow we are back to the city again! BTW, I had to let a friend borrow my computer so I won't be visting all my favorite blogs until Friday night probably (I am already having withdraw)...my better half has offered to let me post off of his laptop for a couple of days so I can keep up.. :)

Welcome to Bodean's

Follow the Sign...


Less Words Wednesday

See Through
May 2007

My iTunes: Face Down (acoustic) by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

After a harrowing travel story, our family finally arrived here this morning and slowly but surely getting over some pretty serious jetlag. it is so great to have them here and to share a bit of what our world looks like on a daily basis. Since they haven't been here to London before, we are headed to the city to take in some sightseeing all day. I may not be back until late but I am looking forward to sharing some great shots with you over the next few days.

I snapped this shot in our neighborhood while on a walk. I am never at a loss of things to study through my lens when I am exploring around here. I liked the the glass window with the patterns, the stone, the brick and the vines creeping through the iron gate.


Hanging On

White and Green
May 2007

My iTunes: There's Only One by Caedmons Call

Aren't we all hanging on these days? I know I am. I saw this flower today in our back garden. I wanted to check out the weather after noticing sleet outside our window. That is right....SLEET...in May...the last week of May. Crazy. I do hope this ends soon. This flower was as bright white as it could be, surrounded by the most vibrant greens I have ever been around. It is all this rain. The greenery is Britain is breathtaking...

Sorry this is short. I am off to clean my home from top to bottom before family arrives from the States in the morning for a visit. We are so excited! Hope that you week is going well wherever you might be!


Words and Rain

Rainy Days
May 2007

My iTunes: American Girl by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers (seriously)

I was asked by another blogger friend, Mark, if he met me would he think I was British. My answer was I am quite American still. I have only been here in London for a year and a half and even though my southern accent hasn't changed, I have found many words I say daily that are distinctly British and if I didn't adopt saying them, I may not be understood.

I will list a few examples below. The American words are on the left, British counterparts are on the right...

trash can...rubbish bin
bathroom....loo or toilet or W/C
that's fine...no worries
call me...ring me
cell...mobile (mo-bile)
underwear...pants (I cant tell you the trouble I had with this one!)
living room...lounge
hood (of a car)...bonnet
auto parts...motor spares (literal, huh?)

So while I am still an American gal...I am settling into the vocabulary nicely. I would love to hear any more words that anyone wants to add to this list. It could go on and on and on! I know my readers that are living here in Britain with me may have plenty more to add...feel free to leave them when you comment!

I snapped this image on a wet walk through the neighborhood. The wrought iron fences here are always a good subject for me....and this one is wet from rain which is totally appropriate seeing how the rain has been nonstop lately.

Stay dry! Cheers (translation...goodbye)!

And thanks Mark for the inspired post!


Behind The Glass

Purple House
May 2007

My iTunes: Better Days by the Goo Goo Dolls

As I sit here looking at the rain and feeling the cold air seeping through my window, I started looking through my images from my day in Notting Hill. I am in need of some warmth and sun again.

I always love shots of homes, doors, windows....as I have said before, I always imagine the life being led behind each of them. With my camera down, I am people watcher in places I visit. Although there is much to capture and share I am always aware of their privacy. For this reason, I tend to find other areas of interest to shoot. Hope you enjoy these images...they came out just as pretty as the day I stood underneath them.

I hope that you all a sunny and dry week ahead!

Grey House
May 2007


Summer Heat

Cooling Off...
May 2007

My iTunes: Bright Side of the Road by Van Morrison

Sorry to be a day behind in my photo of the day....here are two images for you.

You can tell from my images, it has been pretty hot here in London. Well, it HAS been...as I type my post, it is cold and rainy, conditions you might have in February not May. The top shot is of one of the many fans throughout our home. Being American, I am used to hot, humid weather....however, I am not used to no air conditioning! I'm so spoiled! :) One of the great things about London is it doesn't get humid here. It is a constant dry hot. As the temps rise, our home gets hot so we totally rely on high powered air circulation fans...like the one above. And like always, I love the lines...it makes for a good picture to share.

My eyes came across the shot below as I sat in my daughters room yesterday and glanced out the window. The sun was beating down so hard on the brick it washed out the side of the wall while around the corner you can see the texture of the bricks in the shade. As I looked, it seemed to be a good image of how bright the sun was that day.

I hope you all are all having a good weekend!

The Hot Sunshine
May 2007


Ordinary Corners...

Window Dressing
May 2007

My iTunes: Just As I Am by Andrew Peterson

...that aren't so ordinary.

I am always happy when I find an interesting capture when I least expect it. Take here for instance, I was heading into the local antique store and looked up as I walked through the doorway. I quickly grabbed my camera, shot the picture and went in for a good browse. I love wandering among all the things that once passed through the hands of others and imagining their stories. I didn't walk out with anything but it was a lovely afternoon spent with friends. I didn't realize until later how much I would I like this image and I hope that you do as well.

Take care everyone!


Warmed By the Light

May 2007

My iTunes: Hope to Carry On (live version) by Caedmon's Call

This post is for a friend. A dear friend...

"I look up to the mountains; does my strength come from the mountains? No, my strength comes from God, who made heaven, and earth, and the mountains."
Psalm 121:1

I snapped this at the train station as I wandered up through the tunnel. Looking at it, I am reminded of journeys that we are all on in this life and how I am in desperate need of a Savior to make it through each second. He is my light in the darkness...my hope in despair.

My strength when I am weak.

I miss you and I'm sorry we are so far apart these days...
hopefully we can see eachother soon.


Waiting For the Train

Lines, Lines
May 2007

My iTunes: Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol
(I have been listening to this one a lot lately)

There are so many things that I like about this photo....where do I begin? I snapped this as I waited for the train during my time out the other day in the city. It was a gorgeous day as you can tell. I like the clouds, the tracks, the paint on the platform, the roof...every bit. :)

Hope you all are having a good week!


Hues of India

Dandia Dancing
May 2007

My iTunes: The River by Good Charlotte

I promised you more images from the Garba, so here we go. I hope that through these shots, you might get a sense of the sights and sounds from the evening....

The first image is of the dancing. I just love all the colors in this shot! The mood is so festive and it put a smile on my face as soon as I saw it. It is almost a form of line dancing and you hit the sticks together with the person across from you as both lines move to the music. Very fun!

The second image is of Sadie in her pink and gold lehnga. She looked beautiful and had been preparing her outfit since February. As you can tell, she fit right in with everyone else.

The third image is a shot showing one of the many ways we decorated. The candlelight and the pretty Spring flowers really gave the room a warm glow and refreshing feeling. As night fell, the room was so cozy thanks to a few lovely touches like this one.

The fourth image is of just one of the many children that were there that night. These children are wonderful dancers and why shouldn't they be? They have been learning since they could walk. Isn't she precious?

OK, OK....for those of you doubters...here it is...the fifth image is my better half and me. So you see, I DID put down my camera! :) And check out the henna on my hands!

Hope you enjoyed these!

Exquisite Fabrics

Candlelight & Flowers

Celebration For All Ages

Me? Camera Ready? Just this once!


Sounds of India

Playing the Tablas
May 2007

My iTunes: Praise You With the Dance by Casting Crowns

It has been a wonderful weekend. Nice....and sunny. Last night, went to a Garba. It is an evening of traditional Indian celebrating that includes dancing and music. I can't begin to tell you of all the sights and sounds. The decorations of flowers, vibrant fabrics and candles really set the mood of the evening. The women were all dressed in their finest sarees and Punjabi suits in brillant colors that spanned the rainbow.

The above image is of one of the musicians playing his tablas. They had such a wonderful sound as we did dandia and garba dancing. I even managed to put my camera down for a few minutes to get out on the dancefloor myself. I know, you probably don't believe me but it's true. :) I will share some more photos in the next few days.

Have a good week everyone and thanks for all your thoughtful comments...


Scenes from Notting Hill

From Gray to Blue...Spectacular Skies!
May 2007

My iTunes: Good Love Is On the Way by John Mayer

You don't think that I was going to share yesterday's shot and that was it for the sunny day photography did you? :) Of course not. I mean, afterall, I did have a whole day out wandering and that was just one place I went. Earlier in the morning, I took the tube to Notting Hill with a friend of mine who I was blessed enough to see for the morning. She is visiting the city with her husband from Texas and we penciled in some time to get together and explore.

There is absolutely no way I can share just one image here. This neighborhood is so ecclectic and fun with the buildings painted in so may different vibrant colors and the greenery everywhere...it is wonderful. The main street running through Notting Hill is the very well known Portobello Road. The narrow road is filled with bakeries and antique shops that could take days to sift through if they are given the proper attention. On Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, they have a large fresh market. It's abundant with the freshest fruits, vegetables, flowers, meats and fish that leave your mouth watering and wishing you hadn't even so much breakfast right down the street.

You can tell it was a perfect day for getting shots there. The brillant blue sky was the ultimate backdrop for this artistic architechture lining not only Portobello Road but street after street throughout the neighborhood. I hope that you enjoy taking this small tour with me through my lens.

Take care friends!

Rainbow Houses
May 2007

The Perfect Tea Spot
May 2007


Wishing No More...

Lazy Day
May 2007

My iTunes: On The Radio by Regina Spektor

All the wishing worked! Guess what came to visit me today? The sunshine. :)

I am so happy. I spent a day to myself and wandered into the city. I snapped this shot in Green Park which sits next to Buckingham Palace. I while I wasn't going to fork out any pounds to sit in one of these comfy chairs they have there, it wasn't going to spoil me from getting this shot. It is lovely I think...possibly a favorite lately. My partners for the afternoon were the blue sky, the fluffy white clouds and the soft, lush green grass where I sat. It was TOTALLY worth the 11 day wait for sun. I will be sharing more on my trip into the city in the next few days. I am excited about the images I was able to get.

Have a wonderful weekend!



May 2007

My iTunes: Let's Not Get Carried Away by Wilco

for the sun.

Ok, it is day 11 of rain here.

It's getting so hard when I look out the window and see the dark clouds day after day. When they do break every now and then, the sky is a brillant blue up there. It is beautiful. I am ready for the flowers to be out once again. The closest I could get was this lovely bloom at our neighborhood florist named Lilyma. It was huge and the colors are so amazing. I have posted about this quaint little shop before. The owner is always so kind, letting me wander around in her shop, take pictures and move things around as needed for my images. When I saw this bloom, I was yearning for the sun once again. I am desperately needing to see more of it. Soon hopefully...

Maybe tomorrow. :)


Wordless Wednesday

Trash Day
May 2007

My iTunes: The Story by Brandie Carlile

I mean it this time.....completely and udderly wordless. Ok, maybe just this one thing...can you imagine the looks? I got down on the ground, in the persistant London rain, only to get a shot of these trash bins? :) All for you all. Off for more 24!


Fresh Popcorn

Salty and Hot
May 2007

My iTunes: Send Me An Angel by Scorpions

I think I am liking this extended stay houseguest idea! Tonight, Jackie made some fresh popped popcorn from the stove for all of us. What a treat! I haven't had this in such a long time. We are just settling into the couch now to start Season 2 of 24. It is amazing. I am so excited!

One of my earliest childhood memories is of when as a family we went to see Star Wars (yes, the first one...yes, in the theater) in 1977. I was 5. YIKES, I am totally dating myself. :) Before going to the movie, my mom would spend an hour making fresh popcorn and putting it in big brown grocery bags to take with us. Something tells me you can't do that anymore....actually, I am not sure we could do it then, but we did! :) What a memory. Thanks Mom for that so long ago...and thanks Jackie for tonight.


~sidenote...what is it with me and the food shots lately?


Scrumptious Sweets

Cake by Sadie
May 2007

My iTunes: Wonderwall by Oasis

Take a good look...the cake above was made for me by my daughter today. Isn't it pretty? It was just as tasty as well! She made it from scratch herself and then tied that pretty black and white ribbon around the bottom. So creative. I was wondering what Sadie was doing in the kitchen all that time. How nice to be on the receiving end of such a thoughtful gesture...usually I am treated to her rolling her eyes and shutting her door....but not today. :)

Thanks Sadie....I love you.

The image below is a shot of the cake made by Sadie's cousin Alex. They are both so wonderful looking! Both girls love to cook and have always talked about having a restaurant or something together one day. You two are well on your way girls! I better get a family disocunt...my mouth is watering!

Cake by Alex
May 2007

Moonroof View

Tower Bridge, London
May 2007

My iTunes: Starmile by Joshua Radin

Sorry that this was posted so late everyone....

Seeing how I'm a yank living in London, yesterday my family celebrated Mother's Day together. We started with going into the city to go to Hillsong Church which was an amazing time of worship. Then went to Hamburger Union, a restaurant that serves up some great burgers and shakes. To wrap up the afternoon, we took a car tour of London, opting out of walking because well, the rain has returned here. And honestly, if you haven't see London in the rain, you haven't seen London at all! It has been raining for 5 days now and I as I sit and write this post, day six isn't going to be any different.

I snapped the image above as we crossed over the Tower Bridge next to the Tower of London. It is such a pretty bridge. The image below is from last year when I managed to get the same shot. And I like this one a lot. What a change the sun can make! Hope you enjoy these!

Tower Bridge
October 2006


Lacing Up...(again)

Here we go...
May 2007

My iTunes: KRU by Krukid

Today was the day...

Jackie, our friend who is staying with us for awhile, has lit a fire with Sadie and me to get us running again together. Please take a sec to welcome her to Blogland, her link is above and on my sidebar. Jackie is a dedicated runner (at least she has been) and is starting back up now that she is in London with us. So at 8:15 this morning, the three of us laced up our shoes, grabbed the iPod and hit the pavement. I CANNOT run without music. I would be bored out of my mind just looking at scenery. Is that awful? When I have music, there is a clear kick in my step and I find myself trying to run with the pace of the song. It is really good for me. And I can't have any slow stuff....it has to be hip-hop, rock, or techno....period. Anything else and I give in way too easy or start focusing on pain I night be feeling on any given step.

I snapped this shot after we were all done running. We started with 1.3 miles today and will hopefully be doing the same tomorrow without walking at all. We will see. One day at a time! Make sure to ask me every now and then how my run was...it will help to encourage me! Also, any running advice is always welcome! :)

Hope you all are enjoying your weekend! All you moms (including my own) have a great Mother's Day!


Lunch on the Hill

My Lunch
My iTunes: We All by Rush of Fools

Several of you have asked about my images that I sold to the Doll's House awhile ago. They are up now on their website so I wanted to make sure to give everyone the link to go check them out. I am very happy with them and more importantly, so are they! YAY! Thanks to all of you who have supported, encouraged and advised me through the process of the first official sale of my photography. I hope that you enjoy what you see.....my pictures are here. They are under Our Food (all images) and The Retail (the carrot cake and the jar of chutney).

Today, our houseguest Jackie, has been settling into our home. She will be here for the next several months. What better way to get her acquainted with our neighborhood than take her to The Doll's House for some tea and lunch. It was so good. Like everytime, they brought my lunch to the table and I sat and stared at how pretty it was on the plate. All the colors and smells were a feast for my senses. I ordered the maple bacon and avocado panini with salad and coleslaw. You know I had to take this picture! Here it is....

Have a good weekend everyone!


A Time to Heal

May 2007

My iTunes: Real Gone by Sheryl Crow
(from the Cars soundtrack)

My youngest son Sam, was home all day with a fever. I snapped this as he slept. This is one of those things about parenthood....they get big and are busy, busy all the time. Somedays, it is hard to watch them grow...after you have read to them in your lap, taught them to ride a bike and wiped tears away after they have been hurt. Every now and then, I get these moments, glimpses of how they used to love all over me and let me love all over them.

Today was that day. When my kids are sick, all they want is their mommy. I am sure every child is like that. As much as it breaks my heart to see them sick, I felt so needed, scratch that...I felt WANTED today as he slept next to me. He was cuddling with me, walking with me from room to room...it was sweet. I hope I don't sound crazy at this point.

So you all know, Sam is better now...fever-free. We watched the movie Cars together (which explains the song I am listening to as I post tonight) and spent some time just hanging out. Tomorrow all will be back to normal except hopefully he will remember his day home with his mommy. I know that I will treasure today.

Take care everyone.

BTW, thanks for all the comments about yesterdays images. Everyone pretty much said the same thing and liked the crisp and clear shot. I really liked both images and enjoyed reading what you all thought. So thanks!


Fickle Wednesday

Crisp and Clear or....

My iTunes: Square One by Coldplay

Ok, I can't decide...

I am NEVER this fickle...especially when it comes to my photography. So I thought that I would get the opinions of my readers as to which version of this shot you like better. I snapped this on another walk around the neighborhood. I really love the rooftops here and all the clusters of chimneys scattered about on them. It adds to the quaintness and suttle charm of my neighborhoood.

Be sure to comment (yes, I want hear from all you lurkers out there!). Let me know which one you prefer and why you like it. See you tomorrow.

Soft and Dreamy?


Blue and Shiny

Line'm Up
May 2007

My iTunes: Jesus Hurry by Rush of Fools

I have written before about my trips to IKEA. Check out my post called Got Light? about a trip to IKEA in January and the image I managed to get then. That post would have been perfect for tonight as well....read it and you will see why.

We have a friend who arrives tomorrow from the States. She will be staying with us for 5 months. We are all very exited to see her and for her to experience life here with us as a part of our family for awhile. This is why we made the trek to IKEA tonight, to pick up a couple of odds and ends to help make her space here more like home.

I know, I know...you can see me now right? As we walked into the store, I'm pretty much laying on the pavement to get my shot (out of the corner of my eye, I see my husband and boys make double time to the door and get away from me). It's OK, no hurt feelings here...it was worth it. I like this one quite a bit. Hope that you all do as well.

Have a good one!


Natural Beauty

May 2007

My iTunes: Taking the Long Way by Dixie Chicks

I really need to apologize for my lack of writing on my blog. Not that this is a writing blog...and not that I am a good writer. But I do like to take some time writing with my photos when I post. I am telling you, it is the episodes of 24 we have been watching. I can't write anything reasonable because I am in a trance as I watch it. Sad really...but we are enjoying it.

I hope that you all like this photo. It is another favorite I think. I saw these dead trees on a walk and I really liked the way they looked through my viewfinder. The branches are intriguing and to me...and quite artful. Just goes to show you, beauty is everywhere....

See you tomorrow.


Up Again...

Science Museum, London

My iTunes: Dare You to Move by Switchfoot

It is just like me to have all these scientific wonders at my fingertips and what am I doing? Why looking at the ceiling of course! That's me! :) This ceiling changes colors every few seconds...pink, then purple, then blue, and then green. It was pretty cool to watch....the kids seemed to really like it, although I liked it more.

I have to run....more episodes of 24. BTW, you all need to watch it. Keifer Sutherland is so good in this show. We are completely addicted. Nice, huh?

Have a good week all!


A Smiling Face

May 2007

My iTunes: All I Need by Bethany Dillon

Sorry this post is up so late...and it is short. I took pictures tonight at a party for some friends of mine that are getting married in a month. I got home pretty late. Here is one of my favorites in the lot. I am sure you can tell why. She is beautiful...and radiates happiness.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.


Under the Tree

Lazy Days

My iTunes: Where We Gonna Go From Here by Mat Kearney

Is there such a thing as a wordless Friday? This my attempt at one. I never did like the rules! While the kids are away for the night, John and I are settling into to watch the first season of 24. I have a feeling we may be pulling an all nighter. I am pretty certain we are the only two people who haven't seen it yet.

This is one of my favorite shots although I have yet to share with you all. It was taken at the park on one of the first really beautiful days of spring here in London. As I walked under these trees I was overcome with their magnitude. Look at the size of that trunk. Amazing. They were just beautiful and I hope I did them some justice.

Sorry, I knew I couldn't do a "wordless" anything! Maybe next time! Hope that you all are well and enjoying the start to your weekend.


M is for Milestone

Pull it tight.
May 2007

My iTunes: Lay Me Down by Andrew Peterson

Wow...I can't believe he did it! Jack learned to tie his shoes today and boy is he proud!

Jack is the young fashionista of our family...just like his Dad, he loves bags, shoes and jackets. And even the odd tie (we still aren't sure where he got that from)! So cool. All of us love our slip on VAN shoes which has probably hindered the shoe tying process in our family. Sorry kids, you can start blaming mom and dad now. So as John and I wondered when he was actually going to tie his shoes, we eventually came up with the perfect bribe...a new pair. Jack was psyched! So we made a big deal about it...we took him out, told him how great and cool these shoes were and well, it worked...hook, line and sinker! :)

This image is the fruits of our labor. I snapped this pic as he finished the first shoe before moving onto the next. Way to go Jack, we are so proud of you! BTW, I told him he made the cut for my pic of the day and he is eagerly awaiting your comments!

Everyone have a great Friday!


Just a Moment

By the Pond...

My iTunes: The Very End by Derek Webb

This is going to a be short tonight because I am exhausted. I thought you all might like this shot. I was relaxing on a blanket in the park and glanced over and saw this scene. As I sat and watched while trying not to be intrusive, I wondered what these women were saying to one another...their stories, their laughter, their lives. I carefully took this picture always aware that I am in public and don't want to cross a line.

Have a good day where you are!


So Long April

Sleeping or reading?
April 2007

My iTunes: Live and Learn by The Cardigans

Can you all believe that it is May already? I surely cannot. 2007 is flying by and I as I looked over our upcoming calendar, I went back over April. I was remembering this day. I posted about it. Click here and here and here for those posts. It was such a perfect day.

Strike One...sorry John, I actually snapped it this way!

I snapped these while we were chilling out on the blanket in St. James Park. Clear blue sky, green grass and the smell of the baseball glove that my son threw next to me as he went off the kick the soccer ball. It was nice to look around and see my family around me relaxing. Honestly, it doesn't happen very often these days. The chaos of life creeps in so easy and sometimes the more cherished moments get pushed aside as we are just trying to get through the day.

These posts are reminders to me to savor the moment....whether it is an hour, day, a week, a month, a year. How about you...what are the moments you have savored recently?

"Whatcha reading Sadie?"