Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Ingrid Seward on the Royal Family

On April 12, 2011, I attended an American Women of Surrey meeting with Ingrid Seward as the keynote speaker. She is the Editor-In-Chief of MAJESTY ~ The Quality Royal Magazine, and has been since 1983. She told us all kinds of great tidbits about the royal family! Here are a few interesting facts and quotes I jotted down:
  • "The Queen is thrilled that Kate is a commoner!"
  • "She's (the Queen) concerned that Kate comes from a stable-minded background."
  • Ingrid says that Kate's Mum is "very glamorous and glossy"! :)
  • "The Queen wishes that she would have established a better rapport with Diana."
  • "Charles will NOT abdicate the throne to William, because he would want him to have his freedom before he takes on the responsibility of becoming King."
  • Ingrid feels bad for Fergie for not being invited to the wedding and that she believes William did NOT invite her out of respect for his grandfather. Prince Philip does not care for Fergie because of the way she disrespected their family. Fergie was a close friend to Diana and the boys were supposedly quite close to Fergie growing up. Fergie's a "busted flush" ~ not liked by the English people.
  • "Will and Kate will cut their wedding cake with a sword (tradition)."
  • "Harry has a twinkle in his eye like Diana had."
  • Will and Kate will live in a 6 bedroom farm house on an island in Wales for two years. When they're in London, they'll live in a small apartment in Kensington Palace.
This is one of the two books she was selling that I purchased.
She signed both of them inside for me. See below for an example.

Majesty magazines photo by me, as are the bottom two of Ingrid's book.

Monday, 25 April 2011

What the hell does BOB'S YOUR UNCLE mean?!

When we were preparing to move to England, we all went through "cultural training". One of our sons noticed a common English phrase in his workbook ~ Bob's Your Uncle. He asked our instructor what it means. She told him it means "and that's all" basically. Well...for some reason, he got a total kick out of this phrase and started to use it all the time. So, when I was trying to come up with a unique title to my blog, Bob's Your Uncle just stuck! :)

On Friday, April 29th, 2011, after William and Kate are united in marriage, they've had their reception, and the sun has set...Buckingham Palace will NOT be leaving their lights on all night long like Westminster Abbey....and Bob's Your Uncle! :)
Here's another great example of the definition of Bob's Your Uncle: This is a well used phrase. It is added to the end of sentences a bit like and that's it! For example if you are telling someone how to make that fabulous banoffee pie you just served them, you would tell them to boil the condensed milk for three hours, spread it onto a basic cheesecake base, slice bananas on top, add some whipped double cream, another layer of banana and Bob's your uncle!

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

The Mannequin Pis?!?!?

A couple really great friends and I, (who I met while living here in England), decided to take an adventure to Brussels, Belgium! What a great trip it was!

We enjoyed just walking around Brussels and taking in the sights! We also enjoyed just randomly sitting down to enjoy a nice, cold Belgium beer.

So can any one really explain to me why the Mannequin Pis is so popular?!? Is it because it's small and it's been stolen so many times over the years, that it's become this obsessed about thing?! Supposedly, according to Wikipedia, the original version was "erected" (no pun intended) :) in 1388. The current version in 1619. When we were there, it was dressed up as a vampire. There were many adults wondering around

Brussels dressed up as zombies. We're not sure what it was all about, but there was a theme. I guess they change the outfit on this little statue (who is normally just naked and peeing into the fountain just below the statue) quite often. While we
were taking pictures, there were a few guards who were VERY protective of it. They actually made sure I was behind this certain spot on the sidewalk. I took a picture, but was really confused on why it was so popular. After coming home and reading up on it...I'm still confused! :) Oh well...that's nothing new!

So, from there we went a few steps down the street and bought totally delicious Belgian waffle!! Then we stopped in a few shops, bought a few things, drank more beer, tried escargot and mussels. I wasn't a fan of either...but the Laura actually took a liking to them! :)

The Grand Place (bottom right picture) is the central square of Brussels! We enjoyed a nice lunch, some beer, and lotsa laughter in that square! :) A super fun trip!

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Adele - Rolling In The Deep

Copied from YouTube, I love this girl's voice! A British 22 year old star who just bumped Miss Britney Spears from the top of the charts with this album featuring the song, Rolling in the Deep. This song is about being heartbroken (who can't relate to that, right?!?!), based on a true story about (I'm thinking) HER relationship with an older man that just didn't work out. Enjoy!

Monday, 11 April 2011

Big Ben ROCKS!

Climbing the Clock Tower is something you can ONLY do if you are a resident of the United Kingdom. A group of expat ladies filled out all the necessary security information in order to go on this incredible experience! I'm going to add a link so you can take a virtual tour and be able to see what we just experienced this past Friday, April 8th, 2011. As you look up the tower, you get this excited feeling as you start to climb the 334 stairs to the top! When we reached the top, opened the door and saw the first of four GIANT faces of the Clock Tower, I got shivers down my spine. It was just such an incredible moment to stand up on the little lip and measure my height to the top of the VI and stretch my arms out behind the face of the world's most famous clock!

There were two moments when I choked up just thinking about the opportunity we were

experiencing....(1) Standing behind the face of the clock and, (2) while listening to the chimes of the bells and looking out across London on such a beautiful sunny day, tears filled my eyes. It was just such a great, appreciative moment. Seeing London from a view that not everyone gets to see.

Unfortunately, we were not able to take any photos, so if you want to experience the tour we took, you'll have to click above for a quick version of the tour.

I am so thankful for each and every opportunity I am having living over here in such a beautiful country! England is just beautiful!

Enjoy your virtual tour, and if you want to take a moment and play a little game....have fun and good luck! :)

I'm ending this post with a picture of the London Eye nestled between these beautiful trees.

Today was a perfect day! ♥

~ all photos taken by me ~

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Across the Pond with the Loeckens: Big Ben

My friend Kate, from this link I'm sharing, went on the beautiful Clock Tower Tour with me and a group of gals this past Friday, April 8th. I took off for Brussels at 6am on Saturday the 9th (my friend Laura's birthday (HappyHomemakerUK), so I haven't had two seconds to blog yet. I'm not sure when I'm going to get around to it because my week if filled with meetings, appointments, company, swimming lessons, gym, baking (donating to dorm kids at school), more appointments, and school assembly. Whew! I'm not the world's most organized person, so until I get around to my posts about this past weekend at Big Ben and my trip to Brussels with my incredible friends Laura & Sheila...I'm going to share a post written by another MNUKGirl...Kate(not plus 8). :) Thank you Kate! LOVE this post of yours! Enjoy everyone.... Across the Pond with the Loeckens: Big Ben: "I needed a clone of myself today. 1st grade assembly at 9 AM. Tour of Big Ben with a train leaving at 9:28 AM. Sitter drop..."

Monday, 4 April 2011

Will (um, I mean Harry) and Kate

So....I was reading on-line last month about this mug that "mistakenly" has a picture of Harry instead of William on it. I ordered one ASAP and just got it in the post today. :) Click HERE to read an article about it. I'm not sure if it's still available for purchase or not!?! Too funny! Wonder if it'll be worth anything in another 200 years....if my great-great grandchilden don't break it! :)

Only a handful of days left until the Royal Wedding! What are you doing to celebrate on April 29th?

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Happy Mother's (Mothering) Day

The UK celebrates Mother's Day, or as they call it, Mothering Day...on the fourth Sunday in Lent. During the 16th century, it was meant for people to attend their mother church for service. Eventually, people in Ireland and the UK started celebrating Mother's Day on the same day (this all according to my trusty Wikipedia). I think it's great that living here in England, I now get to celebrate being a "Mom or Mum" twice each year! :) I mean, it's only fair, since my two oldest call me Mom and my youngest calls me Mum...right, it's only fair?! :) My "Mothering Sunday" started out with my hubby and my two oldest boys waking me with breakfast (scrambled eggs, toast and milk) in bed. The plate was decorated with a beautiful cut flower from our garden too! :) The boys also each made a homemade Mother's Day card for me, which is ALWAYS the best present to get (besides their hugs and kisses). They were so sweet and proud! :) Once our youngest woke up, we decided to take a little drive south to Littlehampton to see the beach and check out this quaint little seaside village for the afternoon. Check out their great website and enjoy a few of the many pictures I captured today.

Happy Mothering Sunday to all my wonderful UK/Ireland friends! ♥

(Quick little note: I am SO frustrating when going to post my posts, because when I click PUBLISH, my posts get all "jacked up" and don't look the way they do before I click PUBLISH. I'm sure there's some HTML code I could easily put in to help me with this, but I don't know enough about these damn computers. This problem happens with EVERY post of mine and I waste a TON of time trying to go and fix the problem. Sometimes I'm able to, and other times I'm now! My toddler NEEDS to get to bed and I don't have time to play games with my damn I'm posting "as is" and the paragraphs may separate nicely, or they'll be all crammed together. Sorry if it looks terrible! Must get little man to bed!)