Archives for March 2009


Guess who came to visit this week?

The tooth fairy left E a few bucks for his trip. She must have forgotten that they don’t take dollars in England. I’m also not sure if she adjusted for the exchange rate. We might need to have a chat next time she comes for a visit.

Things may be a little quiet on the blog for the next few days. I think my access to the computer will be limited. I also suspect that I’ll be ready to collapse from utter exhaustion after our days sightseeing. I’ve seen M’s itinerary and it’s, how shall I say it, “ambitious”. Just like my man.

My mom is staying with the girls while we’re gone, God bless her. She gets an extra crown in heaven for this one. Not because the girls are so difficult, but because our heating decided to go just this morning. I think I just saw mom head to bed with her coat on. And if you know my mother, you know that I’m not kidding.

I’ll be sure to say hello to President Obama while I’m away in London. (or President Nuvama as S likes to call him). Apparently the G20 Summit takes precedent over my travel plans. The nerve.

Until next time,


I’m not quite sure what to say about Brideshead Revisited. It was a visually stunning film, but I just couldn’t really get into it.

On another note, today was a whirlwind. I’ve been going crazy trying to prepare for “The Trip”. So much work and planning and effort, but so worth it! We used to keep a binder filled with pamphlets and maps for guests who came to visit us in London. I pulled it out and dusted it off today. I almost cried as Michael and I pulled out page after page of our past. It was so bittersweet.

I told M if anyone came to visit us here in NJ, I would hand them a map to the nearest Target and the Mall. That would conclude their tour.



I am feeling a little bit weary. So much to do, and not enough energy to get it done. I did manage to take some time out today for a scrap booking get together. I am such a dork. Seriously.

However, I look at it as time well spent. I would have to pay a therapist to listen to me ramble on about stuff that my friends will listen to for free! Plus, who else can give me advice about fallen arches, getting along with another person that I may or may not be married to, and the merits of a Willy Wonka’s caramel cream egg? Girl time is so important.

This comes on the heels of a great night out at a Mexican dive with a bunch of girlfriends. I can’t even begin to tell you what we talked about that night. My mother reads this blog. What I can say is that we all had stories about what sorts of things our dogs have pulled out of the trash can and presented to other people. My story beat them all hands down. That’s one story you will never see in print because not only does my mother read this blog, but so do my kids!

And on that cryptic note, I’m off to watch Brideshead Revisited. Enjoy your weekend!


Barnes or Life as I used to know it

You had to know I would post again about my upcoming trip to London. One week from today, I will be back in my little corner of London called Barnes. Try saying it with an English accent. It sounds so much more sophisticated.

Shall I take you on a little tour? Why don’t we begin by taking a walk along the Thames towards Barnes High Street. I love this little stretch of the river. A few days from now, it will be overcrowded with people cheering on either Oxford or Cambridge in the yearly Boat Race. They finish this historic race about one mile up the river from this spot.

Why don’t we take a turn down the High Street and head towards Barnes Pond. We’ll pass the cheese shop and the butcher along the way. The butcher once asked me if I needed to call my “boss” to ask her what cut of meat I needed for dinner. At my look of utter confusion, he then realized that I was not the nanny of the two tots hanging on to me, but instead the mother of these two monkeys. I also clearly had no business being in a butcher’s shop. What cut of meat? Was he kidding me?

Lovely view! Oh, and there across the street is my favorite cafe. Shall we stop in for a nice hot cup of tea and a croissant? I promise you they are the best in London. And look, they saved us a seat outside. Don’t fail to take notice of the car on the right with the big “L” on top. This car has some poor terrified driving school student at the wheel. I know this because I was once that terrified student. That is a story for another day, but I guarantee it will make you laugh!

I’m feeling better now, how about you? I suppose we should be getting on. Why don’t we catch the bus instead of attempting the long walk back home? Americans aren’t made for walking, and it looks like it might rain. Let’s hop off here near Barnes bridge. This is where the British Rail comes into a tiny platform station a few streets from ours. Michael is well aquainted with this station.

We’re almost there! And lucky us, it didn’t rain after all. Here we are coming up to the round about. Mind where you walk, and don’t forget that cars are coming from the opposite direction than you are accustomed!

And here we are! First Avenue, Barnes, London. Such a beautiful street, full of pastel colored terraced homes, packed tightly along these narrow streets. You can see why we decided not to drive today. Not a parking spot in sight. I spent countless hours circling the block looking for a spot on grocery day. Usually I had to unload in the middle of the street, park one street over, carry whichever child was with me a block, only to find the spot directly in front of my house now vacant. Oh, the madness! I have also played bumper cars with many of the fine cars in this photo. Don’t judge me, you don’t know what it’s like.

Just a short walk up the street and we’ve arrived! Welcome to our (former) home! Rachel will you show us in? Can we find time for another cup of tea?

I think that brings our little tour of Barnes to a close. Did you enjoy it? Did you attempt the accent? C’mon, I know you did!


is what I hear coming from behind the living room wall right now. I am mildly disturbed. There is some sort of animal scratching and making strange noises IN MY WALL. Michael is asleep, as is the little dog at my feet. I should be asleep too, except for that dang critter in the wall. At least I know it’s not a snake, but still, it’s upsetting.

I hope it’s not eating our wires. Or dry wall. I also hope I am not responsible for disposing of it if we manage to trap it someday. I have been on removal duty with a few flying squirrels we caught. I do not approve of making a woman dispose of dead animals. It’s just wrong.

These are the things that keep me up at night. Animals in the wall.


PS To my dear friend Susan: If you’re reading this, I apologize. I know it will probably keep you up at night too.