Friday, February 25, 2011

Now What?

It's official: I'M GRADUATED! My diploma came in the mail, which means that I actually finished! Can you believe it? I'm still not sure if I do, but it's true. I will be walking in the graduation ceremonies in April (they don't have one for Fall semester), but other than that I am DONE! I'm pretty excited if you couldn't tell, but wouldn't you be? And I even did it in only 4 1/2 years--although I did take off 1/2 year for brain surgery, so that's really pretty good if you ask me. I'm a college graduate--BOO YAH! :)

So the question emerges... now what? After you've been going to school for an entire lifetime (you know, since like age 3 school has taken up most of my life), what do you do? Marriage, family, more school, work, mission, live the high life--so many options! But for now, I actually am enjoying the free-ish time I have been granted; in fact, I finally have time to do some of the things that I love most, like creating! I can't even remember the last time I sewed, that's how long it's been--but now I get to play again, and I am so excited! So, in the spirit of creativity, my dear mother and I have opened up our very own Etsy shop--check it out sometime!

It's still in the beginning phases of life (I'm not technologically savvy), but in the next few weeks we will be adding lots and lots of fun things. If you have any tips/input on our shop, items, things you would like to see made, anything--let me know! This whole thing is very new to me, so I would love feedback. Now, I need to get back to work--so many things to make, with so few hours in a day!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Valentine's Day

Meet the cutest little girl on the planet: Heather Wilcox!
Isn't she just adorable??? I love her to death, and I haven't even seen her in person yet, haha. I love being an aunt!


Sunday, February 13, 2011

Tudor Princess for a Day

So, you've got only ONE Saturday left in London... what do you do with it? Go shopping and buy all of those cheap quality European over prized clothes that won't fit into your suitcase anyway? Many of our girls did, which is fine--nothing against that--I've just never been a big shopper myself, and why go shopping--you can do that in the United States! Haha... yes, why go shopping when you can be a princess and play in a castle all day?! That's right, I was a princess, in a REAL castle, for an entire day! Rachel and I decided to be awesome and take the train to Hampton Court Palace, one of the many castle areas of King Henry VIII--one of my favorite kings. ;)
Upon entering, we visited the kitchens:
Totally awesome and totally nasty.

The fireplace--still scorched from all those lovely massive fires.
and there was even a fire going for us! (it was a bit chilly in there)
Ooooh, and the tapestries were just stunning--there were entire rooms full of them!
Oh yes, and did I mention that I was a princess? Dang straight! The gift shop happened to be in the same area where we bought our entry tickets--I couldn't resist. :)
Our favorite king of England:
Nice outfit buddy--yeah, he had some ego issues...
Best thing about old castles in England? The spirits that haunt them! King Henry VIII himself!
My favorite part of the entire place: THE GARDENS. And yes, I do believe they were more beautiful than the gardens of Versailles--although those were quite spectacular as well--sorry to be blasphemous, but I'm fond of a more natural beauty rather than the stenciled gourmet gardens of France.

Baby Bambis! How would you like to have a field full of Bambi babies in your own backyard? I could definitely get used to this.
And our favorite part of English sight-seeing: all the renovations and scaffolding!

Okay, I'll be honest--next to wearing a tiara and touring a real castle in England, my favorite part of Hampton Court Palace was the maze--it's the same one that Paddington Bear got lost in!

And although it was much smaller than it had been in its glory days, we still managed to get lost... and as soon as we realized we were lost, it started to rain...
the worst part was that we could see the exit through the bushes--but we just couldn't reach it!
Fortunately we weren't lost for too long--we got out just in time for the rain to set in. However, before heading back to the palace, we had to stop by the rose gardens. It's a must.

Back to the palace: more ghosts!
We walked through the timeline of the wives of Henry VIII--seriously, I don't know how they survived, especially Katherine of Aragon. She lived such a tragic life, losing her children time and time again.
and somehow, for reasons that I may never understand, she still loved Henry? ...I never did understand the twisted life of love...

Hampton Court Palace with my dear friend Rachel: best way to end a magnificent Summer in London Town. <3

Friday, February 11, 2011

A Rainy Day in the Park

School was so completely insane during finals; I'm not sure I've ever studied this hard in my life--well, maybe for MacFarlane's tests... ;) but I can honestly say that it was very rewarding. I haven't ever learned so much in such a small space of time, it's unbelievable. I seriously only left the room for dinner and to run to Tesco for some yogurt (oh my London yogurt, how I miss you). However, one morning I did get somewhat of a break--I decided to take a lovely run through Hyde Park. When I say lovely, I really mean a complete downpour!--the only rain we really got on our entire trip in London, and of course it only rained while I was out running; it cleared up as soon as I got home. Oh well, it was quite an adventure. I went all the way across Hyde Park (not a small park by any means) and visited the war memorials over on Hyde Park Corner, then I chickened out and took the tube back home. I was exhausted, cold, and completely soaked, but I did get to see the park, and it was beautiful.

Australian Memorial:

New Zealand Memorial:
Queen Elizabeth Gate:
Royal Artillery Memorial:
Wellington Arch: