Saturday, June 25, 2016

Snapshots from Brussels

Yesterday (Friday) Rick and I arrived in Brussels to do the tourist thing.  I had said to Rick that a trip to Brussels would not be complete without seeing something to do with Tin Tin and there he was to greet us at the train station.

Tin Tin featured a lot in our family life and I enjoyed reading the comic books to my boys.  We had a lot of laughs together over the antics of him and his friends.

Outside the station the taxi industry appears to be alive and well in Brussels.  Lots of customers from all the commuters coming into town on the Eurostar train line.

After settling into our AirBnB we set out to see what Brussels had to offer.  Lots of history, but these pruned trees caught my eye.  They seem to be commonplace in these open areas.

A bit of window shopping.  I have seen and love flatto peaches but never seen flatto nectarines.  I wonder if they will make their way to New Zealand?
Some New Zealand kiwi fruit.
Beautifully presented lamb. Just double the Euro prices to get an indication in New Zealand dollars.

Couldn't come to Brussels without visiting some chocolate shops so more images to come on that subject.

This is so London

Setting out yesterday (Thursday) I felt that this image captured elements that so remind me of London.

Victorian style apartments on the right, a Victorian style lamp post on the left and in the background from this modern world, The Shard Building, shrouded in cloud on a grey and damp London morning.

I spent an enjoyable morning exploring in the Borough/Southwark area of London and The Shard seemed to be a landmark no matter where I was.

I wanted to explore Borough Market with all of its fine fare of foods from many parts of the world.  I wandered through at about 9.30am and all was quiet.  It was quite a different story when I went back at lunchtime where I found many people seeking out a lunchtime satisfaction from all the food on offer.

In between times I had a look at Southwark Cathedral which is very close to the markets.  One of the oldest church buildings in England and appearing to be in surprisingly good condition for its age.

Another treat was to happen upon Sir Francis Drake's ship, The Golden Hinde.  It was worth contemplating the amazing feats that were achieved for queen and country in this vessel.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Boys and their toys

I wrote recently about how Caleb is just as interested in playing with cell phones as any other toy.

The other thing he loves to do is cover his face with something and walk around the house as if blind folded. 

In this instance he has found he loves using this straw hat belongs to his sister, Anna-Clara.

He gets a lot of fun from this even if us adults might think he is heading for disaster in the process.

Not a problem as far as Caleb is concerned.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Time for a change

I have been with Aaron and Marcele and family for just over a week and now it is time to visit with my youngest son, Rick, and his partner, Hannah.

It has been lovely to catch us with Aaron and family and to see how the grandchildren have grown.  I will be away for a week and then return.  This time Aaron will be on leave and we may have the opportunity to go on one or two family outings which will be nice.

Yesterday it was lovely to capture the children at play in the backyard.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The birds are singing

Behind Aaron's property there's a row of very tall trees that provide a barrier between properties and the local train line.

For the most part I can't see many birds but I do hear them singing and the sound is most delightful morning and evening.  I know from last time I was here that squirrels also live in these tree tops so maybe I will see them again before I leave.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Anna-Clara's Quilt

Some of you have asked if Anna-Clara's quilt was well received and the answer is, yes, it has been well received.

We have not put it on her bed yet because I am sleeping in there for the duration. 

I asked Anna-Clara if this image was like her mother and so now she tells people that it is.

She also likes the bumble bee in this one.

The other day she found Daddy using the quilt and let him know that it was HER quilt.

I think I can be assured it has been well received.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Good news

Good news. The skies have cleared and the sun has arrived in time for summer in Epsom.

Tomorrow, the 20th June heralds the official start of summer here. 

Linda and I were here July/August last year and were truly spoilt with the English summer we had. 

A bit of a shock this time to arrive to clouds and rain on Tuesday. It has been much the same ever since but today, what a difference a bit of sunshine makes. 

A visit from Uncle Ricky

Anna-Clara is very fond of her Uncle Ricky. When he arrived today she stayed in his arms for a very long time and enjoyed playing a game peek a boo with him. 
Hannah came as well and we all enjoyed some family time together. 

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Hello to Epsom, again

Yesterday I decided to reacquaint myself with the Epsom High Street. 

After yummy coffee at the Zig Zag Cafe I walked to the town market which is held every Thursday and Saturday. 

The local landmark is the town clock:-
with the market stalls at the base. 
This is not a big market but it has the character with stall holders calling their wares.

(Please note the skyline. Not much to be had by the way of sunshine so far.)

We frequented the plant stall last time we were here. Then it was the tail end of the season but there is so much more to be had here now at the earlier part of summer. 
Lots of stoned fruit and fresh vegetables to be had too. 

I settled for some vegetables for breakfast and a selection of cheeses for lunch and then made my way home again.