27 November 2015

afternoon tea bus tour!

BBBusheader8 2

can you imagine anything more perfectly charmingly london-esque than enjoying a darling spread of afternoon tea on board an adorably pimped out red double decker bus?!

on wednesday afternoon, my new friend julia and i enjoyed mini sandwiches and quiches, scones with clotted cream, super cute sweets and mint tea from thermoses while the best london landmarks swept by outside our top-deck window! it was just about the darlingest experience ever, and so much fun!


the storefront of bb bakery – such a cute little parlour – is literally right across the street from our flat, and i’ve been wanting to pop in one day for afternoon tea. but when once i started seeing bb’s adddddorable buses around town, i knew i had to go on one of their afternoon tea bus tours. it’s such a brilliant idea executed so, so perfectly!

the ambiance was outrageously lovely, the edibles were super pretty and super yummy, the route covered so much of the really good stuff in london, the staff was cheerful and festive and attentive, the details were totally delightful, and the whole thing was just pretty dreamy!

IMG_8830 IMG_8834IMG_8838 IMG_8845
there’s a little book on each table with pages that show the tour route and that provide interesting facts about the landmarks the bus passes. the tea thermoses are so cute and are a fun souvenir every passenger can take home at the end of the tour. my favourite detail: each side of each comfy booth is equipped with a fuzzy checkered blanket – so cozy!
all the items on the table seem to be perfectly engineered for a sometimes-bumpy bus ride – we had zero slips or spills!!
i was so enamored by the delicious and darling sweets and savouries that i missed some photo ops of london landmarks along our ride. but it was so fun to peer out our big window – up at the beautiful buildings, many wonderfully decorated for the holidays, and down onto the busy bustling streets.
we even got christmas crackers – one of my all-time favourite things..right up there with scones with clotted cream and jam!
IMG_8857IMG_8862 IMG_8823
^^ spectacular views of big ben at sunset + super lovely afternoon tea? great combo! ^^
^^ the sunset was gleaming in the sky as we were passing westminster abbey. it was hard to capture but totally magical! ^^
^^ a shot of the top deck tables, after all that yumminess had been gobbed up! ^^

going on bb bakery’s afternoon tea bus tour is such a perfect way to experience an overview of the best of london. so ideal for first-time visitors, returning visitors, and locals alike! i highly recommend it.

BBBusheader1280x600_21 2

{this post was written in partnership with bb bakery. thanks for the absolutely delightful ride!}

25 November 2015



happy thanksgiving eve! i’ve been trying to hone in this week especially on the deep gratitude i feel for so, so, so many blessings and joys in my life. as i’ve considered the things i am very most thankful for, i’ve realized that the core of my gratitude is most certainly about relationships. truly, the best part about life is people, and the immensely beautiful and sweet and unique and wonderful bonds that we form spirit-to-spirit.


and so today i went through some wedding photos, looking at the faces of those humans i love most – and i was brim, brim, brim with acute gratitude.

i am so thankful for each member of my family. look at these faces! {missing a few here – there are indeed eight more shining faces that i feel so much gratitude for.}693_0232
and i’m so thankful for each member of the second family that the boy gave me. i love these people so very much.
i am so thankful for my incredible parents, and the incredible parents of my true love. i can’t even wrap my head around the magnitude of the gratitude i feel for these each of them – their sacrifice, support, examples.
693_0640693_0291 693_0309
i’m so thankful for my siblings, each of whom i unabashedly and completely adore.
and for siblings-in-law, who gift me with generous love and care and new perspectives and stellar examples of true goodness.
i’m so thankful for all these women. how insanely lucky am i to have this sisterhood?!
and man oh man, i am sure so thankful for these little people, who bring so much simple joy to my life. nieces and nephews have been my obsession since i was eleven years old, and now i have thirty five! they are each such a gift to me. {missing a few in these photos!}
i’m so thankful for dear, dear friends. our celebratory dinner the evening of our wedding was filled with our closest, very most beloved friends. and i’ve never been quite so overwhelmed with love and gratitude than on that october night when i had a clear view of almost every person on this planet i am most thankful for.
i’m so thankful for the friendship of these women. when i look at these photos of me with my bridesmaids, i am flooded with tender memories from different stages of life with these true, true friends.
693_0999693_1020 693_0355
and, of course, most of all among human relationships, i am so thankful for the boy. pretty much every single night, as i thank god for my ian, i am choked up by the intense gratitude i feel for him, for our love, for our marriage that is refining and a profound joy. i truly cannot believe how much i love ian wright, and how overwhelmingly thankful i am for him.
693_0422 693_0459693_0048  693_0423693_0473693_0481 693_0496693_0557 693_0587

indeed, i am outrageously blessed with good people and good relationships. this thanksgiving, and hopefully more and more every single day of the year, i give hearty thanks.

{wedding photography by lindsey stewart of green apple photography – click to see more from our wedding}

23 November 2015

lately in london



this week, winter came to london.

on my saturday morning run, as i jogged over the cobblestoned streets around covent garden piazza, a huge smile stretched across my face. i was happy because i was cold. there was a wintery biting chill in the air around the christmas decorations, and i was glad to feel it on my face and in my bones. i’ve missed having a real winter during my years in california. the crispness, the shivery sting – i love it. {i know, i will probably have a different attitude by late january…}

the past few weeks have been a real change of pace for us. more slowness and less activity outside of routine life has been really good in a lot of ways, and also challenging in other ways. the boy has been working long hours and i am honing my ability to be alone but not lonely. i am seeking to appreciate the ordinary and the extraordinary, develop my gratitude, become better at using my time wisely, and relish being alive in my own present. i’m so glad we get to be learning and living this chapter of our story in this amazing, amazing city.


today i’m sharing some photos from two very classic london outings i’ve taken lately. i seriously, seriously love living here.

one: watching the changing of the guards at buckingham palace.
we live about a seven minute walk away from the queen’s residence, and i decided one day that i might as well go watch the changing of the guards some late afternoon. {the last time i saw this spectacle, i was maybe eleven or twelve, and it’s just such a classic london thing…!} i met a few new friends at the front gates. even though it was a grey november weekday, it was pretty outrageously crowded. this picture pretty much sums up the experience:IMG_8716
a sea of humans, cameras and selfie sticks cramming in for a good photo of the action! we got there pretty early in an attempt to get a good view, but a loooot of tourists had gotten there before us – haha! from our vantage point, the event was kiiiiind of slow and boring, and once it got a little more exciting when the instruments came marching in, it started raining pretty hard. it was funny.
we enjoyed nonetheless! and when the whole thing was over and the crowds just started to disperse, a rainbow appeared in the sky!
and everything above turned blue. london weather…so variable!
^^ from the walk home. my new friends came back to covent garden with me and i introduced them to homeslice pizza in neal’s yeard, which is undoubtedly my favourite food find in london thus far. ^^

two: saturday afternoon at the portobello road market.
while the boy was working on saturday, i bundled up and perused the delightful, iconic notting hill outdoor marketplace. portobello road on a saturday is something that photographs really can’t capture. there is just this unique brand of charming there – it’s hard to describe. i sipped on some peppermint steamed milk while i strolled among the stalls selling everything from produce to antique magnifying glasses, peeking down side streets at the colourful row houses along the way. jazzy music was streaming from a corner stall selling records and cds and it was getting dusky at 3:30pm.

i really, really love london. and this monday morning on the week of thanksgiving, i am feeling full, full, full of gratitude. life is so very beautiful, and i am so glad to be alive now and here.

happy monday and thanksgiving week!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...