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London | UK trip with Hattie

The last weekend of our trip was spent with dear friends Tracey, Ed and Lily.  Tracey and I were good friends in Tassie and I also took photos of her amazing graphic design work in and around Hobart. Hattie was great friends with Lil at Primary school.  They moved to London 2 years ago and my was it good to catch up again. So much talking and enjoying hanging out again.  Visiting the Natural History Museum, a  bit of complaining about all the walking, eating at the local pub, walks around Hackney where they live along the canal,   through the park, going to a flower market, a food market, eating at their favourite little restaurant in China town, doing a night walk to Big Ben and seeing Buckingham Palace (which didn’t look like a  palace to Hattie!), always eating YUMMO food!  I loved experiencing life in the big city, riding buses and tubes and enjoying a  different way of life.  Can’t wait to get back and spend a  little more time doing some “Mum” things with Tracey!!!  Thanks for having us Tracey, Ed and Lil.  Love you guys xx

Sheffield | UK Trip with Hattie

Apologies for the long blog post but wanted to share pics from a trip Hattie and I took to England last week for her 12th birthday. So excited to be able to just hop on a  few planes for under 4 hours of flying and a train ride and hang out with family and friends.

We left Umeå in the morning with the thermometer reading -18 celsius… and arrived to London where Hattie’s choice of clothing for the day (bare legs) was more appropriate… 10 degrees!

The first half  of our trip was up to Sheffield/The Peak District to stay with Dave’s family.  We had a quick tube trip to St Pancras (which I always thought was pronounced PancrEas!!) to get a  train to Sheffield. Hattie got to meet for the first time her awesome cousins there and couldn’t have been happier. When Dave was 4 years old his Mum and Dad and the kids moved to Australia.  It’s been wonderful over the years to stay in touch with them, with the occasional visit.  We are hoping to have many more of these quick trips over to see them because they are THE BEST.

We had fun trips with Emma, Uncle Pat, Rich, Helena, Chris, Laura, and Uncle Mick to Chesterfield to see all the places Great Grandad/Grandma, Jack and Lyn have lived and even where Dave was born. A visit to the grave of Dave’s grandparents, the Chesterfield crooked spire church, pressuring Uncle Pat into paying for parking!, a walk out in the Peak District to a  rock we never found (we wont name names about someone not wanting to walk there),  a day wandering the shops in Sheffield and eating yummy curry (I wish you could hear how Sheffield-ers say “curry”…coo-ray), hunting for books in a quirky little book shop, and a wander around Bakewell visiting sweetie shops!     Getting together with nearly all of the family for a  fun dinner and celebration for Mel’s birthday where we played indoor hockey and just had a  brilliant time chatting with everyone.  Being able to have like minded conversations with family was wonderful xx  To Emma and Rich, we love you guys for having us.  Thank you xx

Erika + Gustav | At their home | Innertavle, Umeå

The  Erika and Gustav goodness keeps on going……

A  week after their wedding we had more fun at their home.

Erika and Gustav are restoring a  beautiful old home and surrounding it are red barns and buildings that completely embody “Sweden” for me.  Plus the forest behind their home is gorgeous.  We feel so lucky to have met these fabulous people and love having them as our friends now.  Their sphynx cats are an added bonus for my kids!

Rosie in the snow | Innertavle, Umeå

With the snow falling down, making our little world white, Rosie and I crossed the road into the forest for some exploring.

Bethan’s blue jumper found at the op shop today was the choice of wardrobe! And Hattie kindly let her wear her white hat.

I would say we stopped nearly 10 times to get the snow out of Rosie’s boots…

Lorraine Mars - Love Rosie, the snow and the blue jumper!

night ice skating | Innertavle skolan

Most soccer pitches at schools in Sweden get turned into ice skating rinks in the winter.  A  tractor comes and sprays water every now and again and gets the ice perfect for skating.  There’s a timer  button to turn the lights on at night.  The kids are getting better and better at it and the main thing…. having fun.