April 29, 2011

Royal England

In honor of the Royal Wedding - todays post is about "Ole' Mother England" - one of the places I really enjoyed visiting. It's also appropriate because Slim is in Cambridge, England this weekend visiting one of his friends getting a PhD there.  I'm sure lots of pub visiting and cricket watching will be happening.  I'll pay a little homage to my father in law's family and my grandpa - both who are of English and Irish heritage. 

I haven't spent a lot of time in England, but the time I have spent was really great!  While backpacking throughout college I made a stop in London and Windsor (where the Royal castle is located we also swung by Buckingham).  There is a sturdiness in London, England - an established ritual, culture and tradition.  

An efficiency and a beauty - a weathered age to the buildings.  A compact organization to the city and the structures that seem to occupy as much land as possible.
You can almost feel the history as you wander the streets, especially compared to the feel of wild free feel you get when viewing buildings and open lands while visiting America or Australia.

Although the monarchy, properness, and rules are very foreign to me  (being a woman of the rugged lands of America) I can definitely appreciate it.  I can also really appreciate the London pub atmosphere,  beer, and the fish and chips - they are all great English staples!

London is definitely a wonderful city - one where I could see us living, which is a rare occurance.  It's got a lot of charm and beauty as well as a lot of things to do and to see.  
If you are in Europe - London and the surrounding area is a must on the day trip list.  Plus there are tons of budget airlines (Easyjet, RyanAir, Virgin) where you can get flights for 70 euros.  Piccadilly Circus is totally insane but you have to see it.  Windsor is beautiful - and there is a super creepy collection of Queen Mary's dolls.  

Hop on the London eye (total tourist trap but the views are great) and ride on a double decker bus.... but nothing beats finding a small cafe with a patio to have a tea and scone on - one where you can really enjoy a misty English afternoon.  Overall I feel these English cities are best seen when you explore the little side shops, cafes, and pubs

On a random note I realized something today as I started singing along and inserted "Let Freedom Ring" for "God save the Queen" that "My, Country Tis' of Thee (America)" is to the tune of "God Save the Queen" ... why am I not surprised?

I love it - Touché, America, touché.

April 27, 2011

Travel Make-Up Must Haves

When you travel space is a much needed & limitedly available item.

So I am always searching for ways to add an extra pair of shoes or save space for a take home goodie, especially on our weekend away "carry on" trips.

However, no matter what I decide to leave behind there are two make-up items that always make the cut.

1)  My NARS blush in "orgasm" (& blush brush) ($24.00 USD)

2) My Chanel lipstick in "Gabrielle" ($30.00 USD)

These are both great colors if you have a warm skin complexion.  

Slim bought the lipstick for me and it's one of the most useful presents I've ever gotten.  My beautiful friend Anna suggested the NARS blush, and I've been in love ever since.

The NARS blush is so subtle and shimmery, it really makes your cheeks look warm.  
The Gabrielle lipstick is a bold red, with lots of pigment - and is a tribute to Coco before she took the name Coco for business, and is a really classic red.  

Although both a bit pricy - it's worth it for these two items, you have to invest in the money maker & they last a really long time!

Blush and lipsticks are must haves - no matter where you are or what you are doing - on the go, running errands, a night out - they make you look alive and beautiful & are super easy/fast to apply.

When you travel you can just pack these two items & always look alive no matter how bad you are dying from the time change or hours of transit time.

Indulging in one quality color for both will be worth your investment I promise - and it will save room from having to pack other make-up items in your carry-on (which = more room to bring back wine!)

April 25, 2011

Don't Leave Home Without It - The Neck Support Pillow

Slim & I have put a lot of miles on our frequent flier and driver odometers over our lives.  

Throughout the miles &  trial and error we have discovered some "musts" of travel that we don't leave home without.

One is the U-Shaped Neck Support Pillow

If you are going on a trip - get one.

Car, plane or train - this gem is a life saver.

It lets you sleep comfortably no matter what position you are in - or what kind of space you have.

Personally - I like the temperpedic or "bean filled" varieties.  The blow up just doesn't do it for me on the comfort factor.  

If portability is what you're looking for - the pillow is small and can just "hook" on a luggage handle or backpack strap.  Most even come with "covers" so that you don't get glorious travel germs all over the place you are laying your pretty face on.

Here are a few suggestions

This Tempur-Pedic model is heaven - but a bit pricey at the $79.99 USD cost.

These are the types of pillows Slim & I use the micro-bean variety.
 Comfortable and reasonably priced at $9.99 USD
The one featured below is the Travelocity Version 

These Noodle Head pillows are adorable for little kids and a steal at only $9.99 USD

Happy Sleeps!

April 22, 2011

Melting the Night Away - Cleveland Tastes

Although Cleveland is an all around rainy and "rough around the edges" city it has some really amazing gems.  One of these gem's is it's incredible restaurants.  

I am not kidding - I have been all over and Cleveland boasts more consistently delicious but varied in food offering restaurants than anywhere else on this globe.

Maybe it's because it's a city of immigrants, maybe it's because us Clevelander's need food and drinks to keep our sprits up in all of the lake effect precipitation/fog.... whatever it is I am thankful for it.

One of these wonderful places is "Melt Bar & Grilled" - who's goal is to 
"provide gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches and 
as many beers as possible in a cool and comfortable environment" 

And boy do they.  If its the Big Popper ....
"fresh jalapeno peppers, cheddar & herbed cream cheese, beer battered, mixed berry preserves"
(photo courtesy of Meltbarandgrilled.com)

Or the Paramgedon
 2 potato & cheese pierogi, fresh napa vodka kraut, grilled onions, sharp cheddar 
(photo courtesy of Meltbarandgrilled.com)

That you feast on you won't be disappointed.

Without further a-due ...
Below are some photos from our own delicious visit to Melt!

April 19, 2011

A Long Hiatus

Hello Everyone!

Sorry for the massive break in blog posting.

 Lots has been happening in Slim & I's lives and we haven't gotten a chance to write it all down (you know life is really fun when you don't even have time to reflect!)

In between traveling, finishing up law school (Shera), getting into law school work (slim), moving back to the U.S. temporarily (Shera), meeting the family (both Slim & Shera), getting ENGAGED (woot woot), and planning everything in between - we've had trouble taking a breather.

We will slowly be catching you all up on our trips over the past several months which included Belgium (again), Ireland, Germany, Australia, and the U.S. of A.

Lots of fun tips & photos to follow (slim and my parents aided in the two of us becoming the proud new owners of a D 3100 camera... now if I could only figure out how to use it - well that's a different story).

I hope all is well in your corners of the world!