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Trust: Five Minute Friday

It’s Friday and my first weekend in the UK. I’ll be here throughout the entire month of July and so the next several FMF posts will be inspired by my travels abroad to spend time with family. This week our prompt is Trust.

When we travel abroad there is a wealth of trust we put in others. We trust that the pilot has been trained and knows the flight path well. We trust that TSA is completing the security checks to prevent dangerous people from embarking with us. We trust the airline to check our bags in correctly instead of damaging or losing our cargo. We trust customs officers to let us cross the border. We trust that taxis and trains are running on time to get us to our final destinations. All of this trust is to ensure that we are safely delivered and the mission completed.

Have you ever had a flight where trust was misplaced?

I’ve flown to England every year since 2007 and so I have a mental list of times when my expectations were not met by those I trusted to get me from Point A to Point B. I’ve had luggage lost. I’ve had to spend six hours on the tarmac. I’ve had flights delayed and flights cancelled.

Luckily, my most recent excursion was free from mishaps. My trust in the airlines and their personel was not betrayed (this time). And as I sit here, thinking about our journey from Columbus to Detroit and then to London, I am thankful that things went off without a hitch this time. These next few days will be spent adjusting to the five hour difference from EST. There will be lost of naps, exercises, and reading sessions to help my body adjust to moving ahead in time.

The Ameri Brit Mom

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Guess: Five Minute Friday

It’s Friday and if you’ve been here for a while you know that means Five Minute Friday! On Fridays, I join other writers from around the globe to publish a post inspired by the same topic. This week, our prompt is Guess.

Guess what is coming up soon?

The Ameri Brit Mom is gearing up for the annual trip to England. The name of this blog comes from the fact that I am American married to a British man. We spend one month every year visiting his family and friends back in his hometown. Our trip is just a couple of weeks away and I guess you could say that we are getting excited.

While in England, we usually end up traveling quite a bit. Our homebase is with my father-in-law in Eastleigh (a borough of Southampton). My mother-in-law lives in Portsmouth. My sister-in-law is in Yeovil. And there are various family members scattered throughout in places like Brighton and Dover. I will be doing my usual posts which showcase our journey and travels while in England.

Here are some posts from last year to get you excited about what’s to come:

Quarantine in UK

A Father’s Day English Cream Tea

Long Awaited Cousin Time

Summer in UK

The Ameri Brit Mom

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Order: Five Minute Friday

Happy Friday morning!

This morning I am joining writers from all over the globe in the Five Minute Friday link-up. Every week bloggers and social media writers gather to share a post on a common theme. This week our prompt is: Order.

If you have been following my family and I you know that we spent a month in England. Last Friday we made it home and we have spent the week resettling into our American lives. Jet lag hit us pretty hard. Those first few days we woke up with the sun at 4:45am, but then crashed by 5pm or 6pm. Each day we tried to sleep a little later and stay up a little longer to help get us regulated.

The one thing we did on Monday that helped bring order to our lives was a deep clean of our home. We needed to reconnect with our house and so we lifted the month’s worth of dust, cat hair, mess from the surfaces of the home and worked on bringing the house back to life.

Things that we take for granted while here are things we missed while away. I missed sitting in my writing spot looking out into the morning and the sunshine. I missed the way my cat rubs up against me as I write just to let me know that he’s there. I missed my slow cup of coffee in the morning.

Life in England was amazing. We always do so much and pack a year worth of memories into one month and it is such a blessing. Check out my recent posts about the trip and see that while we were gone we didn’t long for home–we were too busy and surrounded by loved ones for that. But once we arrived home I noticed how much I missed my routines.

Life is starting to fall back in place. There is an order to the home and our schedule is beginning to feel like normal. We are sleeping a normal 8 hour stretch and eating at times acceptable to society. Jet lag shook up the order in our lives a bit, but it seems that it has finally worn off.

The Ameri Brit Mom

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Home Sweet Home and International Travel

Atop Spinnaker Tower in the Portsmouth Harbor

It was hard to say goodbye to our English family. To my squishy nephew. To afternoon tea. To comfortable weather. To streetside cafes. To Americano black from Costa. To endless Covid tests and Track and Trace calls–okay, maybe that last part is a lie. Nonetheless, to journey home always means many heartbreaking goodbyes.

We arrived back in Ohio on Thursday night after eighteen hours of travel.

The airports and flights were not crowded so the time we spent in terminals and on air crafts looked much different than our past experiences. If you are healthy and vaccinated now is the time to travel! On both of our international flights this summer we had entire rows on the plane to ourselves. Traveling economy class is a lot more enjoyable with the ability to spread out and relax.

Adjusting back to Eastern Standard Time back home has been difficult on all of us. We have been up with the sun at 4:30am and off to bed by 9pm at the latest. Coming home is always so much harder than our initial adjustments in England. All four of us are still experiencing jet lag, but will hopefully be fully charged in the next couple of days.

I have missed my friends, routines, coffee spots, and protein shakes. If you are looking for me this week I will likely be enjoying those things…or napping.

A cafe on the high street of Eastleigh with my husband’s aunties
Cafe breakfasts with Squishy
Getting her energy out at Logan International Airport (Boston)

The Ameri Brit Mom

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Summer: Five Minute Friday

I’m a little late this week, but I’m tagging in for this week’s Five Minute Friday link-up. Every week writers from all over the globe gather to write on a common theme. This week our prompt is Summer.

British summers are very different to back home in Ohio.

The temperatures are cool and the air is damp. Winds here are constant and each day we are teased by the chance of a shower or two. Most days I grab a cardigan or hat before heading out. I would compare a British summer to April/May in Ohio.

Don’t misunderstand–there are warmer days. There have been a couple of sunblock-worthy days here, but they are not consistent. Also, it’s no use planning your days according to the reports from local weathermen. No one has a clue how to predict rain on an island surrounded by sea. As my daughter would say, “You just go for it and hope for the best!”

We are headed to New Forest today, to the quaint British town of Lyndhurst. This is one of my favorite spots for a Cream Tea and so rain or shine, we will be venturing out to the horse meadows of the village and the cobbled streets of the town. I wouldn’t have to pack on the layers of warmer clothes back home, but while in England–best to be prepared.

The Ameri Brit Mom

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Long Awaited Cousin Time

Because of Covid, my daughters had not met their 18 month-old English cousin yet. One of the highlights of this trip to England is giving them plenty of opportunities to make memories together. They are so in love–you can see it in the way they play together and smile. Here are some of the precious moments they have shared together so far this trip:

Cuddles on Grandad’s couch
Indoor tea party while we were still in quarantine
Chasing pigeons at the Winchester Cathedral
Getting loved on by sheep at Manor Farm
Stealing kisses and making each other giggle
Checking out the cows
Running away from the rain in the Itchen Valley woods
On his throne where he belongs
Only a few more years and they will be driving each other around
Up to no good in the woods
Working out on the cricket pitch in Royal Victoria Country Park

The Ameri Brit Mom

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PiYo Week 2 Recap

(This is a non affiliate post and based solely on my personal experience using the Beachbody PiYo program developed by Chalene Johnson. Results may vary.)

As I increased the rigor of my workouts this week I was met by the challenge of simultaneously experiencing jetlag from travel to England. For the first 8 days of the trip I am required to quarantine at my in law’s home. As far as finding time to work out, I am without excuse. I am pleased to say that the only day I did not work out during this second week was the day of my flight–which would’ve been quite impossible really. I did, however, complete some of my standard flight exercises to keep the blood flowing and logged over 10,000 airport steps navigating three different airports.

In my Week 1 post, I give more details about PiYo and the meal plans that accomodate the daily exercises. This time, I want to share with you the workout calendar for the entire 8 week program.

Major observations of this second week of PiYo:

-Sweat workouts were appropriately named as completing those high intensity regimens made me sweat more profusely than any workout I’ve done in a long time.

-The day after my flight I found it difficult to balance my body and so I struggled most on that day.

– I am doing my best to fit my workouts in every day while in England, but it has been challenging due to being in quarantine with all of my in-laws in the house and kiddos who need a lot of entertaining.

– It is also more challenging to eat according to a meal plan while away from your own kitchen and familiar foods.

-The 20-45 minute workouts each day have improved my attitude and outlook each day.

Now that I am nearly out of quarantine and settling into a routine in England I hope it will be easier to work out each day for the remainder of the trip. I don’t recommend starting a new program prior to a month abroad, but I’m determined to show that it isn’t impossible to stick with it when your health is such a high priority!

The Ameri Brit Mom

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England 2018: Week 4 Review

Now that we are back home in Ohio it is bittersweet to look back and reflect on our last days in England. Our month abroad was our best trip yet full of so many memories with our girls and family. Here’s a look at our first three weeks:

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Our final week was full of good-byes and the emotions that come with knowing we won’t see loved ones for another year. Back home, a brand new adventure awaited us–our oldest starts kindergarten this week!

Despite the hassle of travel with two little ones and the canceled flights in Chicago on the way home (more on that in a future post!) spending a month in England each year is worth it.

Some Things We Did This Week:

-School supply shopping and a girl’s day in West Quay (Arianna is so excited to have supplies from England!)

-Sent my sister-in-law off on a month’s travel around Europe with a friend

-Participated in Story Time at the Eastleigh Library

-Visited with Sam’s aunt, Julie

-Broke down on the side of the road (punctured tire and overheated engine)

-Took Arianna on a two mile run around Fleming Park

-Visited Longdown Dairy Farm (Aleah was very interested in the ducks and even waved at them)

-Date night at Prezzos and to see Mama Mia 2 in the cinema

-Took another spin class

-Swam and relaxed at Mudeford Beach in the New Forest

-Attended a church service at Thrive

-Picnic at Itchen Valley Country Park

-Shopped for journal supplies at Hobby Craft

-Packed our suitcases 😦

Some Things We Ate This Week:

-kebabs

-Daim cake (my absolute favorite)

-several pub lunches

-Nandos

Milestones:

Arianna completed the Reading Challenge at the Eastleigh Library during our stay. She read six books in order to receive her award. Aleah started to wave in her own little way this week and she did it first while visiting the farm. She loved the ducks, goats, and chickens.

The Ameri Brit Mom

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England 2018: Week 3 Review

This week in England was a very unique one. We seldom get the opportunity to host friends from back home while in England, but this week our good friend, Tom, came to visit us and see what life is like for the English. It was a busy week as we tried to give Tom plenty of opportunities to explore Hampshire before he headed off to London on his own. Also, this was our last week with my sister-in-law as she is headed off on a European adventure.

Some Things We Did This Week:

-Swam at the Lymington Sea Water Baths where there were multiple inflatable courses.

-Went to Splashdown, an indoor water park in Poole

-Searched Eastleigh for a map to help Tom orient himself with Hampshire

-My husband, Tom, Kes, and Alan went on a late night excursion to watch the sun set in Portmouth. This trip involved an overheated car, a pub run, and a midnight search for a burger wagon.

-Toured the Winchester Cathedral

-Went kayaking in Woodmill

-Pet ponies in the New Forest

-Had a Cream Tea in Lyndhurst

-Visited the Historic Dockyard in Portsmouth

-Toured The HMS Victory ship from the American Revolution, French Revolution, and Trafalgar Eras

-Ate a car picnic in front of the Southsea in Portsmouth

-Worshipped at Thrive Church

Some Things We Ate This Week:

-Fish’n’Chips at the Mayflower Pub (Lymington)

-New Forest Ice Cream in the New Forest

-Full English breakfast

-Curry dinner at Badhi Marchi

-Cream Tea (Coffee and Choc Chip Scones)

-Barbecue

-Roast Dinner at The Alma

-English Candy that we bought for Tom in a Welcome Basket

Milestones:

Arianna kayaked alone for the first time and saw her very first play, “The Gruffalo’s Child” in Winchester.

Aleah turned five months old and she is trying to sit up alone and is working on her upper body strength.

The Ameri Brit Mom

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Thirteen: Five Minute Friday

I’m a little bit late this week with my Five Minute Friday post (I blame it on my all day excursion yesterday involving kayaking and cream teas.) Five Minute Friday is a weekly link-up where a community of bloggers crafts a post based on a common topic. This week the topic is Thirteen. Check out the rest of the community and their posts here. Now on to my five minutes of uninterrupted writing:

FF-Square-Images-Round-4-5

I’m starting to miss my home. A whole month abroad has been an endless supply of joy, but the longer I stay the more I begin to sense the familiar feeling of homesickness. I truly love being in England and spending time with people I love so dearly, but when I quiet my mind I start to crave the things that make up my life in America.

Friends, church, wide roads, American food, lemonade, driving, air conditioning, my house, and pets are all things I miss while traveling. But soon, I will have both feet on the ground in Ohio. Thirteen days and I’ll be back to the states.

For these last days I plan to soak up every moment in the UK. I have to get into one month a whole year’s worth of visits. I still have people to see, places to go, money to spend. I’m still looking forward to worshipping at our church in the UK, taking the girls shopping to spend their money that their great-Grandma gave them, having another play date with our close British friends, and eating a couple more roast dinners.

If you had thirteen days in the UK how would you spend them? What would you do?

The Ameri Brit Mom