Thursday, August 23

Feeling lucky

Right now I'm in Italy with my parents and Hannah, enjoying the first leg of my long vacation (before starting a job - but we won't think about that yet).

We've visited Cinque Terre and Pisa and cooked (and eaten) some really good food and told (and retold) some good stories. Tonight we video chatted with Melissa in Alabama, watched some Friends episodes, and put Lyra to bed, and I stayed up extra late booking a flight to see friends next month when I'm in the States.

I'm feeling lucky.  Being with these three people is like a breath of fresh air.  And I'm looking forward to going back to London for a couple of days, when I can see Dave and wear pants without sweating. (Read: I've totally forgotten what hot weather is like.) And I'm looking forward to going back to Alabama (for like two weeks!) and spending quality time with more friends and family.

It's going to be hectic. And I'll probably spend too much money.  But life is all about the people and I know so many good ones.

Okay, gushing and slideshow over.  I've gotta be up in five hours.

Sleep tight, y'all.

Thursday, August 9

London Breakfast Club: Caravan

I finally visited Caravan in Exmouth Market last weekend. This is the place to go if you want to feel like a trendy Londoner while eating yummy food. 

We sat outside. Glancing around, I noticed that every single person was remarkably fashionable, even the babies. Not in the glitzy name brand way but in the artsy hipster way. Earthy colors, well-worn leather lace ups and sneakers, six or seven layer ensembles with messy hair and unique patterned tights. Plenty of big square glasses and baggy skinny jeans. How do people dress like this every day?  Is it effortless?  Do they spend a fortune on thrifted vintage and an hour getting ready every morning?  I don't know, but London is indeed the fashion capital of the world and I need to get my act together. 

Anyway. The vibe is trendy. The menu is trendy, too. All the brunch items were recognizable but most dishes had a twist. Creamy soy mushrooms. Baked eggs, tomato, and pepper ragout. (I don't know what ragout is. I bet it's French.) Ham and cheese muffins. For me, the obvious choice was cornbread french toast with bacon, rocket, avocado, and paprika-spiced maple syrup. You'd never put those ingredients together, right?  But you know it's going to be delicious. And it was. The downside was the portion size. It was plenty, yes, but I could've eaten twice as much. Maybe that's my own problem.


Linking with love: inside Caravansignageoutside Caravan

Monday, August 6

Camping in Dorset

This weekend Dave and I drove down to Dorset and camped on Northdown Farm, in between Osmington and Weymouth.

Gratuitous couple picture. Upon arriving at the campsite, before we got all gross and dirty from nature.

The forecast was iffy. But it only rained twice, while we were sleeping. Woo!

The farm campsite was fresh, spacious, an easy half hour walk to the beach, and close to lots of country pubs.

One day we drove to Weymouth, where the Olympic sailing events were happening. We couldn't see much - just a distant fleet of white sails, which was pretty - but we enjoyed iced coffees and scones at a cafe called The Tea Bush. We returned a couple days later for breakfast.  Yum. Recommended.

We intended on cooking for ourselves. I bought a new cookstove and everything!  But it was so windy, and the gas cartridges were moderately complicated, so we ended up going to pubs instead. Fish and chips. Pan fried sea bass. Crab sandwiches. Cottage pie. One morning, we acquired some boiling water from the campsite shop and made lukewarm oatmeal and coffee.  Cooking?  Check.

Dave and I have a long history of failed campfires. It's turned into a thing. Every time we (he) fail(s) to build a successful fire, I get sad and irritable. But on our third night, lo and behold, despite my skepticism, after an hour of poking and prodding, Dave built an awesome fire.  It was hot and cracklin' and it burned all our firewood down to ash. We were both very pleased. I started calling Dave 'Fire Maker.'

As always, getting out of London was refreshing. I've missed camping!

Happy Monday,

PS, if any of you are following the Olympics, be sure to watch the USA v. Canada women's soccer match today.  The winner goes to gold on Thursday, and I'll be there!