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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Was there a Wedding???

Did any of you hear about the wedding that took place here in London about two weeks ago?

So on April 29, 2011 (which happens to be my parents wedding anniversary) Prince William married his long time girlfriend Catherine Middleton...

So what was life like over here during all the wedding mania?? Honestly I think the United States had more media coverage and speculation leading up to the wedding than we did here. Of course there were magazine covers and news articles, but there didn't seem to be as much "drama". I kind of felt like there was a bit more pride and genuine excitement for the couple. The city seems to really have embraced Will and Kate and is hoping for a successful marriage.

The city itself was covered with memorabilia and collectible items that people were purchasing left and right. All thoughout the city you could find things with Will and Kate's photo on it.

Union Flags hung all around London, gave the city a charged feeling of excitement, history and pride. If there is one thing that the British people do know how to do, it's throw a Royal Party! The pomp and circumstance for an event like this is impressive. I have to admit that I got caught up in it all. I enjoyed learning a lot of little fun facts like, the reason Will and Kate wanted to to have Maple trees inside Westminster Abbey is because they symbolize balance, promise, modesty and practicality.

Big Screen in Trafalgar Square

So on a more local level, here in Richmond (about 30 minutes away from Westminster Abbey via tube), we were known as the "Street Party Capital". We had 86 streets closed down the day of the wedding for parties...come to find out most were by invite only.

The kids both had Royal Tea Parties at school the day before. Mandy of course loved every second and made a point of wearing her tiara from Steve and Marissa's wedding!!!

The amazingly delicious cake made by a "mum" and eaten by the parents!

Ms. Kahlil, Headteacher at Darell Primary School, asked a room full of 60 or so children why we were having a tea party, what were we celebrating? Mandy raised her hand and told the whole room it was because "Prince William is marrying Kate tomorrow."  For anyone who knows how shy Mandy has been over the years, also knows that this was HUGE for her to speak out in a room like this!!

So on the actual day of the wedding, instead of heading into the chaos of the city, we opted for a quieter, more enjoyable option and headed over to our friends' house. Clair, Sam and their children Jack and Georgia, invited us over for some wonderful food and drinks and we spent the morning and part of the afternoon glued to the TV!

Cheers to The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge!!

Some of the photos from this post were taken from the "Will and Kate" Facebook Fan page. For Official Photos of the Royal Wedding go to and click on the flicker link on the right hand side. You can also still print out a copy of the Wedding Program.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

A Picnic In Richmond Park

Today we decided to check out Richmond Park for the first time. We packed our picnic lunch and headed over to the almost 2,500 acre park. This Park is almost three times the size of Central park and is the largest of the Royal Parks in London and Britain's second largest urban walled park after Sutton Park, Birmingham. This park is also home to herds of fallow and red deer that roam free thoughout the park.

There were families biking, flying kites, walking dogs, playing ball. It was a wonderful afternoon of family relaxation! The kids were SUPER excited to run around and explore and climb the trees! 

So remember how I said that Richmond Park is home to herds of fallow and red deer? Well, I figured that we would be lucky if we caught a glimpse of the occasional deer. Was I ever wrong!!! We saw three seperate herds and one easily had 40-50 deer in it. The kids and I took a walk to see how close we could are some pictures...we were easily 4-5 feet away from some!

Easter In London...

 Easter is the second holiday we have spent away from home.We missed spending it with our families, coloring eggs, sharing a meal together, watching the kids do the egg hunt with their cousins... We thought of all of you throughout the day.

We did, however, still get a visit from the Easter Bunny here in London! The kids woke up to find eggs and small gifts spread throughout the house...Felt just like Easter morning at home in Connecticut!

Our friends, Jennifer, Jonathan and their son Morris, were kind enough to invite us over for Easter Dinner. Jennifer is from the    United States (in fact Wallingford CT) and Jonathan was born and raised in England, so we were able to have a good balance of both American and British influences. We colored eggs, had an Easter egg hunt, played games and ended the afternoon with a wonderful lamb dinner. All in all it was a wonderful day with friends!

Such focus

Morris and Sienna

Jennifer Helping Maia

Ryan's dinosaur egg!

Old Pros!!
Can you see the Bunny Mandy drew?

Morris trying to get the Ultimate Blue Egg

The finished product!

Kids making their bags for the egg hunt

All finished!!!

Adults relaxing!

The Hunt
After the egg hunt, there were more fun and games to be had...bubble blowing, egg & spoon race, water balloon toss...Even the parents got in on the fun!!

Jennifer getting the kids ready for the race

Ryan figured if he held the egg he could run faster!!
Morris realized Ryan's tactic!!! 

The right way...

Mandy won round two...without cheating! 

Parent Race

Water Balloon Toss

Mandy & Maia having a good laugh

Ryan's Balloon with the leak!

After all the fun and games we sat down to a wonderful dinner of Lamb, potatoes, green beans and salad...a first for the Pelatowski Family! Thank you Collins family for a wonderful first Easter in London!!! (Ironic, we usually spend Easter in Connecticut at my aunt Nancy Collins house.)

 Lots of Love from London to all our Family and Friends back home!!!