Tag, You're It
Displaying Results for ‘vacation’
 
 

A cabin holiday preview


I recently chronicled our adventures back at the family cabin (aka my dad & stepmum’s house…sounds more glamourous saying ‘the family cabin’) for my old friends Boden. It’s up on their blog now so you can see how Matilda & I celebrated on our time off at Thanksgiving. Here are a few outtakes, but check out the full post here!

 

 
 
 

In a New York Minute

Today, August 8th, is the one year anniversary of our move to New York City from lovely London…so how does that feel? Well, to quote an LCD sound system song, ‘New York I love you, but you’re bringing me down…’ except in our case just remove the love… New York you’re okay but you’re bringing me down. Perfect.

You see I don’t mean to make a once-in-a-blue-moon appearance and then just whine…but with all the hype over new York and everyone loving it soooo much you start to feel a bit alone, when you possibly, perchance, definitely don’t agree. What am I missing? It’s dirty, it smells ( because I’m a nice person and you might be snacking while reading this, I won’t be saying what it smells like. Lilac bushes and freshly cleaned laundry it is not). There are rats, and more rats.  And the amount of people that just give you the heebie jeebies is just, well, crazy. To say it doesn’t compare to London FOR ME is the understatement of the year. But we’ve done it, and that’s gotta count for something? ‘if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere’… like an advert for the armed forces. Yay, I’m lying in a barbed wire ditch. It can only go up from here, eh?

But it’s not like we haven’t made it– we have, there are positives. David and I both have good jobs, a beautiful apartment and for the past few months have found a place to call home that makes us feel happier. We’ve made DUMBO, Brooklyn our home, which is fantabulous on it’s name alone. Who doesn’t want to live in world of hat-wearing baby elephants?! But in actuality it stands for Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass. This also means that we are few short blocks from the Brooklyn bridge, from the water and from glorious views of the city. I know, you probably don’t believe that after the last little rant, but honestly the city is pretty from afar, with the statue of liberty waving her little flashlight in the distance, the sun setting behind the Financial district, the Empire state building and Chrysler building peeking out of the skyline and saying ‘hello!’. Whew, I feel a bit calmer already. I’ll detail DUMBO a bit more in the future, but it’s very creative, great industrial buildings and a regeneration with some serious love behind it.

 

And lastly, the thing making me avoid Pillar Box Post for months. A bit of sad news…our little Olive Juice, the french bulldog life and rumpled-faced-soul, of our little family is no longer with us. In April we had an emergency visit to the vet and sadly our little girl had to stay there to go to sleep. It was in connection with her back issues we first had a year ago, right after we moved to New York. It’s been seriously hard for David and I to get over not having her around…and we still miss her every. Day. When you aren’t satisfied with other areas of life, sweet puppy breath and kisses on your face is always an instant soother. Sigh. There I got that out, not that most of you don’t know that already..it was some how a mental struggle to come out with that on here. She was quite the star of PillarBoxPost…so here are some of her best bits… biking around Kensington Gardens , relaxing around the house , travelling in England , visiting Rye England , and her introduction.

______________________________

A quick list of  where and what we’ve been up to this past year, as per the photos above.
Starting in the Top, going left to right…

——— FIRST SET ———

ROW 1: 1. Two weeks after arriving in New York we ‘survived’ an earthquake and a hurricane hitting NYC. Yay for crazy Northeast weather! | 2. Our second flat on the upper west side. | 3. Oh Olive, and your crazy outfits…silly girl

Row 2: 1. Christmas tree hunting, on a real life tree farm…yay for being back in Central PA. | 2. Family photo, frenchie fur babies and all! | 3. All ready for the ‘First Annual Forest Friends Christmas Eve Feeding’ which consisted of taking the deer and other cute animals of the forest a lovely christmas dinner of carrots, corn etc. at midnight on Christmas Eve

Row 3: 1. Taking Olive out for our annual New Years walk, but bag style. | 2. Gondolas…indoors…waaaaitaminute? This must be crazy-vegas. | 3. Out at the Grand Canyon, right before the hail blizzard started.

Row 4: 1. Yep, that hail blizzard has now started…very impressive my face doesn’t look like swiss cheese after that encounter! | 2. Zion National Park, yes that IS a real photo. Places like this DO exist. Wow. | 3. And yep, these little sheepy guys do too. Right next to the road! Saw a roadrunner after this, it was like Wild animal Bingo.

——— SECOND SET ———

Row 1: 1. Brooklyn Bridge with the lovely Clare. | 2. David and Olive…oh she’s. so. happy. Can’t you tell? | 3. We fled for some winter sun down to the Riveria Maya, Mexico. Beautiful eco resort full of canalways, crocodiles and other potentially less dangerous things. This is the view of our casita, aka adorable little building, on the canal, taken from our nature boat tour.

Row 2: 1. Lunchtime at work–fabulous view of the Empire State building. | 2. Our UWS flat, or one corner of it, at least. | 3. My 29th birthday at the Standard Grill, where I made a pact with myself to make a penny floor in my imaginary house.

Row 3: 1. Drinks after work…palm trees and that same pesky little Empire State building. It’s everywhere. | 2. ….like right here…in between the arches, do you see it, yep it’s piercing the Manhattan bridge in DUMBO | 3. View of DUMBO and the Brooklyn Bridge from a Manhattan rooftop.

Row 4: 1. Finally had our first trip back to England for a few days…just in time to catch some beautiful summer fields | 2. …and take some random pictures of ourselves on said train | 3. and catch the London Olympics site, sadly just 2 weeks too early.

 
 
 

Man the fort…

In search of a holiday this spring/summer? Yep, me too and since Mallorca isn’t for us this year please just let me live vicariously through you and book the Cap Rocat in Mallorca. For the uniniatiated to the workings of the Mediterranean, Mallorca is a Spanish island in the Med Sea. And past that sea, housed on a cliff, in a former military fort sits this boutique hotel. This hotel is a little different than most as it can list in its amenities a drawbridge, bunkers and trenches alongside an infinity pool, outdoor lanterns and the best umbrella/tent combo I’ve ever seen. I am absolutely in love with the outside setting, with that fantastic umbrella covering and persimmon red rugs. I wonder if they’ll knock the price down a bit if I just set up camp outside?

You can find out more at Mr. & Mrs. Smith or check out the Cap Rocat website where unbelievably there are more amazing photos of the turquoise sea, the sun loungers you’ll never want to leave and more torches you can shake a stick at…

Looking for more boutique hotel action in Europe, check out this beauty in Mykonos Greece or the spring/summer holiday we took in 2010, also in Mykonos! It seems like these inspirational holidays maybe do come true sometimes!

 
 
 

Living it Up…

When I went to Disney World as a child, I was super excited about the 20,000 leagues under the sea experience. Our family had a bit of a thing for sea things, my brother loved scuba men and my mom and I mermaids…but it was closed. And then I went years later…and it was still closed. And then I went again, and it was gone. So instead I had to pledge my allegiance to a new form of extreme living..this time in the trees and the Swiss Family Robinson house. I’d like to say it’s the gorgeous views you have, or the close contact with nature…or something beautifully poetic. But I think it’s just a childish exoticness that still gets me. You can live in a tree!? How cool is that?!  But I don’t think you even need an obsession for treehouses to “get”  Agriturismo La Piantata in Italy because it is simply a beautiful mod con boutique hotel room—that just happens to be perched in a 100 year old tree with stunning views of lavender fields. Apparently you can have it all…

There are 2 treehouse options at La Piantata, a suite 44 sq metres and a cabin at 87 square metres. There are all sorts of luxuries available, from breakfast served to your room, to the pools nearby with ‘in-water’ chaise lounges. It’s not the cheapest option to stay in Tuscany with stays starting at 330 Euros, but achievable enough for me to start saving. I’ll happily swap the winding staircase for riding zebras any day!

Looking for more interesting outdoor-ish places to stay?

Check out some great glamping locations — Part One & Part Two

 
 
 

Just a bit of Blurb…

Joy to the world! I’m on a roll, ticking off things on the eternal to do list. This one goes way back a few years…well ongoing really, to find  a way of seeing our photographs after the event, and one that did not involve computer slideshows. I always had good intentions of scrapbooks and uber design but nearly seven years on and no closer to finishing my ‘trip to england’ sketchbook, I thought it was time to get real. I decided to create some photobooks with an online service and had plans to design intro pages and really make my mark on it, even if I wasn’t cutting things apart and glueing them down. Hah, that was two and a half years ago. A few weeks ago I got real and bashed out a cleanly designed book that isn’t full of bells and whistles, but is in fact full of pictures (yay!) and a smattering of information with dates and locations as page folios (where you would usually have page numbers). And there is the odd quote or highlight to a place. Just enough to make me feel like it wasn’t done by someone else, but not enough to send me over the edge.

I chose blurb as the service (because I liked the logo and website. how lazy) and thought I would start with one book to make sure I didn’t get everything set up for a slew of books only to find out their books were awful or something. Originally when I set up the files back in 2008 (no I’m not kidding), they only had an online book service, where you uploaded photos and placed them using their software. I thought that would drive me bonkers not being able to have full control as I would in a design program, so I thought I’d design the book in inDesign as normal and then export it as jpegs and upload an image per page (which would in fact be an image of the design as opposed to individual pictures). Well my patience, or procrastination was a blessing in disguise as now they have a template and upload feature for indesign which meant I could make one pdf, upload and voila, it was done!

I chose the most expensive option with ‘premium paper’ and hardback cover. I didn’t want a messy dustjacket that was only going to get damaged, or a softcover that was bent. The cover is excellent as it is an imagewrap, so if you had a panoramic picture wide enough with a large enough quality you could have an image going the whole way around. I designed ours with the picture bleeding over the spine and wrapping around to the back with a solid colour back with some type. Nice and simple. It covers from mid 2004 to mid 2006 and is under 120 pages and came to £36 with shipping which was definitely worth it. I’m ordering Volume 2 tonight (while I”m on a roll, I might as well keep it going) and then I’ll probably need a volume 3,4 and 5 to catch us up to present day. I’m so excited about our little personal library of coloured books! PLUS this is a definite tick for Number 6 of the ol’ ten commandments 2010. Got to cram them all in before the arrival of Mrs. 2011 in a few short weeks!

 
 
 

Spanish summer…

photograph by MarsW

Last week, David and I jetted off to the southern coast of Spain (Nerja to be exact, as featured above) with the whole family of in laws for a week of pool action (playing ‘ball-ball’ a fabulous game of ughm, hitting the ball back and forth in the water, trying to avoid sending it over the edge of the infinity pool. Unsuccessful plays resulted in the ball rolling a quarter of mile down the hill), reading (I was the sad loser of the week finishing 6.5 books) and soaking in the sunshine (i’m a very uncharacteristic slightly tanner version of myself). It was relatively uneventful time, but nice nonetheless. You really can’t go wrong with a villa to yourselves perched on an oceanside cliff and a private infinity pool that stretches out into the Med. Sadly it feels like years ago already! I’ve been getting back into the swing of things at work and making my way through an over inflated google reader, but will resume posting as soon as I get my desktop a bit more organized!