Sunday, 24 January 2010

Trying to keep up!

Kew Gardens .... can't wait to see this in the spring.

It has been a busy, busy week and I am finally getting here to add to this blog! School this week has been a huge mix of amazingly good and amazingly challenging. I am absolutely loving it and loving the experience of having my skills tested and then still feeling like I am doing OK. The days are very long. I leave home about 7:30am, catch two buses to get to work and then the earliest I was home last week was about 5:30pm. It has been as late as 7:30! I hope I will be able to drop the time spent at work back as I become more familiar with the requirements of my job as I am determined that the work/home balance will not be dragged out of kilter. On a good note I don't think I need to join a gym. I play British Bulldog with the boys most playtimes (there are three of those each day), so am running for at least half an hour most days. I think I am probably getting enough exercise!

At home we are settling in really well. The Ikea build is now complete - I put together the final piece (our sofa bed in the second bedroom yesterday morning and Richard did the desk in the middle of last week. I have not had much time for my journal yet but will get there. I managed to start annoying the neighbours with my saxophone yesterday and today - so life is gradually returning to some of our normal routines.

Last night we decided to start to enjoy the life London has to offer. We had dinner in a little french restaurant in Soho and then went to see the musical 'Hairspray'. It was lots of fun and had Belinda Carlisle (she was the lead singer of the 'Go Gos' way back when) in one of the lead roles. It is so exciting to be able to do things like that....bit different to down-town Hervey Bay.

Today we went off to the Kew Gardens. We bought a season's passes and will be able to go back time and again for the next 12 months. Thank goodness, because I don't think we even saw a tenth of the gardens today. They are absolutely huge and quite stunning at the moment, as the majority of the trees are bare for Winter. I really wanted the opportunity to visit time and again this year so that we are able to see the gardens in a range of seasons. When we found out about the season's tickets we bought them. One of the good things about having them today, was we didn't need to feel rushed because we can now go back any time we like. The entry is normally about 13GBP per adult. We bought a couple's season's pass for 65GBP. So once we have done three visits we will be saving money.

The Lake in front of the 'Plants and People Exhibition'

The order beds are being redeveloped. They are used for botanic study, will be filled and organised in coming months.

A stunning mute swan. These are much bigger than the ones we see in Australia.

...and after the snow comes the snowdrops.

I loved this sculpture and the backdrop of grasses.

Espaliered lime trees.

One of a series of stunning sculptures commemorating 250 years of the Kew Gardens and the seed collection stored there.

After the gardens we did a slight detour coming homing and drove through Knightsbridge, around Piccadilly Circus and then around Trafalgar Square before coming home. We could do that today, Sunday, as there is no congestion fee. There is normally a fee to drive into that area on weekdays. Even so the traffic was ridiculous. I did manage to hold the camera out the window at a some traffic lights to get photos of Piccadiily Circus and literally while we were moving to get the photo of Harrods. I am pretty proud of it considering how it was taken.

Harrods at dusk on Jan 24th, 2010

Some of the lights at Piccadilly Circus.

I will try to add more through the week this week. Have to see how I go timewise. Lots of love to you all.


Coralie said...

What a fantastic idea... a seasons pass. So you have to pay to go to the gardens??? It will be great to see the changes over the year too. What a 'fabbaloss' experience.
The sculptures are delightful. I did see some on a website once... very impressed.
School sounds good.... busy, but good. You will settle into a routine and get to know the kids and the paper work and everything else. How is Richards work going. What are his hours?
Another hot and humid day today..... Australia Day tomorrow. We are off to the Maryborough celebrations at Portside and cooking damper with billy tea with the scouts (as a money maker). Connor is in the flag raising ceremony. Connor is excited and nervous about his first day at high school. Mind you he is the size of our year 12's, so he should be ok...
love the blog.... such a wonderful adventure and so nice you are sharing it with us.

Ali said...

Hi Coralie, I don't mind playing when there are such amazing things to see. We saw the oldest pot plant in the world (Late 1700's) and trees that are said to be from the 1600's or earlier. It costs money to maintain them I guess and so an entry fee is the solution.

Richard has started work but is not yet up to fulltime. He still has to get on to a register which takes some time, but in the meantime is getting to know the system by doing health checks. He is working only 2 or 3 days a week so that takes some pressure off us regarding the day to day running of the house. When he works he is usually not home until after 7 because he commutes in to Oxford Street and the commute home can be long!

The boys will have some sort of reminder about Australia Day tomorrow! Glad you like the blog. I will keep writing. Can you let Tia and Kayla know about it please.

Coralie said...

Kayla Bean???? and Tia???? no worries

Nic Hohn said...

Loving your photos and writing...and that life is exciting and settling all in the same moment. Hooray for you!

Lillipilli Lane said...

Kew Gradens - awesome Al, how wonderful and tulips in Amsterdam, just great.