Monday, January 31, 2011

Monk's House

Maybe it's silly that I am still trying to finish my London posting, but you know what? I have to finish what I started, it's just part of who I am. Plus, I personally enjoy going through my pictures every now and again and remembering one amazing summer. So I enjoy a little self-indulgence, who doesn't? You can have your chocolate, and I will have my London memories (and maybe some chocolate as well!). :)

All of these houses have names--I think I shall name my house, any suggestions? Haha--what I don't get is that these names don't even make sense. Dove Cottage? Monk's House? Who came up with these? But at least they have names I suppose--it makes them that much cooler. Monk's House is the last home of Virginia Woolf and her husband Leonard Woolf. It is found in the village of Rodmell.

This isn't Monk's House, this is the church just behind it--but beautiful, right? There is so much foliage and natural beauty here, I just LOVE it.
And amazingly, it was actually raining just a little bit here when we went (amazing because normal London weather is 12 months of rain a year, but we happened to come to London during the longest drought ever--oh, and they don't believe in air conditioning... fun)
In the house I found this random cat wandering around--sometimes it was so sweet and friendly, and sometimes it was scared to death--then I discovered that apparently there were two of them. I thought it was just one very bipolar cat.

Virginia Woolf's shawl.
And her deathbead--lovely, right? :P
And the graves of both Leonard and Virginia. Sadly the river where Virginia drowned herself was too far to visit--yes, we're weird like that.

But despite the creepiness of the place, it was quite beautiful.
The gardens were amazing.
I just couldn't get over them!
This was the largest trumpet vine I have ever seen--it covered a wall nearly the entire length of the property. Amazing.
Virginia Woolf's study--it was in a separate building from the house, so that when she got up at three in the morning she could go and write without disturbing Leonard.
The pond--I was fascinated with the pond. It was covered in water lilies and snails. Gross on one hand, yet so peaceful and beautiful on the other.

I just LOVE water lilies.

Out behind the house and the pond and everything else (we were looking for the river to be honest) we found a tree and a swing--and of course had to try it out ourselves.

Here is the church I was talking about.

Oh, and some more morning glory--just for you Mom, and Grandpa--this stuff is everywhere, and it's HUGE.

Saturday, January 29, 2011


I was born bald--many babies are--but some are lucky enough to get a head start on the rest of us, like my new little niece:

Baby Heather was born late Monday night.
6 lbs, 14.8 oz, 19 inches long.

Look at that hair! Not fair, seriously... but so cute! <3

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

She's Here!

She's here! Sad part is that I'm not... but I will see her soon enough. As for now, I get to be the bragging favorite aunt with pictures (pardon the cell phone picture--more to come later):
Isn't she adorable?! I'm so in love--she's beautiful! Carolyn and Daniel did a good job--and now I'M AN AUNT!!! :)

Monday, January 24, 2011


We spent a total of about 10 minutes in Brighton--it had been a long day--but I wasn't complaining, it was cold. I think the other girls wanted to go swimming, but I was perfectly content eating a few chips on the pier and heading home (normally I'm not this boring, but I was exhausted--and hungry). Even for only 10 minutes though, Brighton was a pretty cool place.

A Little Modernity

We had a few minutes after the Bloomsbury Walk, so we stopped in at the Tate Modern--much more briefly than I would have liked--but found some pretty cool things. People tend to make fun of Modern Art, and let's be honest, it's easy to make fun of if you don't understand it--but at the same time, it can also be pretty dang awesome and amazing.

Like Lichenstein's Whaam!--One of my favorites!
Umberto Boccioni:
I was so glad that I found the Andy Warhol room--AWESOME.

Henri Matisse:
Fernand Leger:
And another favorite (how do I suddenly have so many favorite Modern Artworks? Who likes Modern Art anyway? apparently I do...), Auguste Rodin, The Kiss, featuring the infamous lovers Paolo Malatesta and Francesca da Rimini from Dante's Inferno.

Yay for art!--even Modern Art. ;)

Bloomsbury Walk

Next assignment: The Bloomsbury Walk, following the path and lives of many from the Bloomsbury group (like Virginia Wolf, John Maynard Keynes, E. M. Forster, and Lytton Strachey). First up, Fitzroy Square, down to No. 21--the home of Duncan Grant and Maynard Keynes from 1909-1911.
Down to No. 29--where Virginia Stephen and her younger brother Adrian lived after Vanessa's marriage to Clive Bell.
George Bernard Shaw also lived here, prior to Virginia.

Around the corner to No. 33--where the Omega Workshops were located from 1913-1919. According to their founder, Roger Fry, the aim of said workshops was "trying to keep the spontaneous freshness of primitive and peasant work while satisfying the needs and expressing the feeling of modern cultivated man."
Down Grafton Way, down to Gower Street, we found the University College London, where several Bloomsbury artists, including Vanessa Bell, attended the Slade School of Art on this campus.
Totally reminded me of Harry Potter, not really sure why.
We decided to take a detour and go inside.
Where we found the philosopher Jeremy Bentham, one of the founders of the university... or at least what is left of him... apparently he asked that his body be preserved within the university--fortunately they have removed the head and placed it in the college safe, so the head we saw was just a wax replica, by still pretty creepy.

And of course, we had to stop for the typical London-Telephone-Booth-Picture.

Then on to the home of Lytton Strachey,
Many of the Bloomsbury Group members in the neighborhood,
and John Maynard Keynes.
Then last, but certainly not least, where T. S. Eliot worked as director for the publishers Faber and Faber from 1925 onward.