Dec 10

2012

Often as I am driving along the country roads in England, I throw on the brakes, screech up onto the curb, and whip out my phone to take a picture of a house that has caught my eye. There are great houses everywhere here! My taste ranges from sheds to thatch huts to stately homes, and I seem to prefer Georgian architecture over gothic or Victorian – not that I would be able to tell you that without my husband’s input. He can look at any house and tell you what century, decade, and style of architecture it belongs to. I envy this knowledge, but I do not possess it. Despite being a History of Art major in college, I focused the bulk of my architectural history classes on the 20th century. It also doesn’t help that I am American, where there isn’t the same exposure to historical architecture that you would have coming from Europe. I hope some of it will rub off on me while I’m here.


Oct 02

2012

Life in England: So Far

It’s been more than three months since we arrived to live in England for our “creative sabbatical” and to be honest I feel like things are just starting to get creative. The summer was filled up with house guests and travel and family time, but now that the kids are settling back into school, I have had some time to find a routine and get a sense of what “real life” will be like for me here. Even though I am really just at the beginning, I already know I am incredibly happy here...


Aug 20

2012

Ever since my children were toddlers, Gifford’s Circus has been a major highlight of our summers in England. It’s a small, family run “homemade” circus that is cozy enough to feel intimate but big enough to create a festive dose of energy in the room. The beautiful sets are hand-painted, the inspired costumes are hand-sewn or plucked from vintage stores, and the acts are unique, impressive and thoughtfully curated. You simply can’t believe something this personal, charming and creative still exists in the world of global Ringling Brothers and Cirque du Soleil domination. It is the antithesis of the worldwide, mass produced, profit-seeking spectacle. Every year there is a different theme – past ones have included everything from Janis Joplin to War and Peace to Greek Mythology – that dictates the design of the tent, the characters, the costumes and the music. The stories are high-brow enough for adults to appreciate but subtle enough that they don’t get in the way of a 3 year old being able to equally enjoy the show. I have yet to find a better combination of entertainment and personal style.