The London Report, part one

My one week blogging break somehow turned into two - my apologies! Things has been a bit hectic since we got back from London. The past week has been all about job hunting stuff, Amnesty activities, Christmas prep, and hosting a Glögg get together for most of my extended family. It's been a great week though!

So, time for a report from our trip. We arrived on Wednesday afternoon and left Sunday morning, so in all we had three and a half days in London. It felt like a lot of time beforehand, but of course time flies when you're having fun! Still, I do think we managed to find the perfect mix of shopping, sightseeing, good eats and just hanging out with friends.

The most time consuming (and fun!) thing we did was the tour of the WB Harry Potter studios in Leavsden - our bus left at 8 am Thursday morning and we weren't back in the city until 3 in the afternoon. It was totally worth the time though, there's so much to see! I loved the whole experience, but some favorites included seeing the Diagon alley set, the Great Hall and the amazing set of Dumbledore's office which had SO much detail. We spent about three hours going through the exhibit but you could easily spend another five I think!

My birthday on Friday started with a huge breakfast at Pret a Manger - I used to work at Pret when I lived in London so I am naturally biased, but I just LOVE Pret sandwiches. Then we spent a couple of hours exploring St Paul's cathedral - despite living in and visiting London a ton of times, I had never been up in the dome before. The last part of the climb was a bit nerve-wracking, but the view from the top more than made up for it. If you're curious, there's a virtual tour of sorts on the St. Paul's website. After a bit of shopping and a change of clothes at our hotel we headed out for an amazing dinner and cakes with our friends Johanna and Marc, who had booked a fantastic indian restaurant (I love indian food) for the occasion. A great time was had by all!

On Saturday we did a bit more shopping, and then headed to the V&A museum for the necessary dose of culture (my dad the librarian would be disappointed in me if I spent all that time in London without visiting at least one museum). V&A was fantastic, even Johanna who is not usually a museum fan was swayed. The evening was spent at Johanna and Marc's place in Wapping, enjoying some excellent vegetarian shepherd's pie (beer might have been involved as well) and talking. And then on Sunday morning it was time to check out and head back home. I can't believe how much fun we managed to squeeze into those four days, but it was tough to go back home again. Can't wait to come back again!

In my next post I thought I'd show you some of the shopping I did. I didn't buy too much in the way of clothing, but I did get a lot of books, craft supplies, and of course, fabric! We didn't make it to Goldhawk road for fabric shopping in the end, but that was probably just as well since I already spent a ton of money on fabric at Liberty. Lucky for me, Keith's parents had made a secret deal with him that if I found something I loved that they would pay for part of it as their birthday present to me. A big thanks to Maria and Dennis! Anyway, more on that later. I'm off to start wrapping the Christmas presents!

ETA: I almost forgot to mention: I'm guest blogging today over at The Pickled Herring today for Kathryn's Scandinavian Christmas series! My post this year is about making pomander oranges, one of my favorite Christmas decorations. Head over there if you's like to read my tutorial!

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