But it didn't start out all butterflies and rainbows when we arrived on August 1st. Here is how we spent our first 12 or so hours after landing at Heathrow.......................
We landed, claimed our luggage, got into our rental car and headed an hour and a half north to Steve's parent's house. We nipped out and got our favorite fish and chips and started to settle in with a cup of tea for all of us. Ahhhhhhhhh................. Steve boiled the kettle and prepared our tea. We all had a seat in the lounge area when I heard the scream of all screams coming from the kitchen. Stella snuck into the kitchen and pulled a mat from the counter top where all of our boiling hot tea cups sat. I jumped up and ran into the kitchen where Stella stood screaming. She poured boiling hot tea all over her left hand / forearm. I immediately jerked her clothes off trying to figure out where the boiling tea landed. She cried, I cried, all the while her little hand / forearm was bubbling away. Talk about terrifying!!!!!! I panicked to say the least. Nothing like this had ever happen to my baby! Her little hand/forearm started blistering up immediately. I ran it under cold water all the while she was screaming and hollering in pain. It BROKE my heart. Steve's mom called the doctor and they said to submerge her arm into cold water for 10 minutes. I filled a tub of ice cold water and submerged her left arm in water. In the meantime, Steve ran to the local grocery store to get gauze, bandages, etc. to wrap her arm up. By the time he returned, she was still crying the most horrific cry no parent ever wants to hear. I had enough!!!! To the ER (or A&E) they call it we went. We left Lottie with Steve's parents and headed to Burton. Stella finally calmed down and went to sleep in the car on the way there. Once we arrived, they immediately put a cold, medicinal gauze on her arm to take the burn out and wrapped it up. We then waited for two hours to see the nurse practitioner to have it assessed. Thankfully Stella slept during those two hours we waited to be seen. Once we were seen, she perked up and acted like such a big girl. She did great while they cleaned and dressed her arm. We were told we needed to return the following day to assess the damage. We ended up following up another 4 times to make sure everything was nice, clean, healed and no further treatment would be needed.
Here's Stella, the little trooper with her lollypop and teddy bear. Who would have thought that just after a few hours landing we would end up in the ER. I've NEVER taken my kids to the ER back home and within the first day, we ended up there. I will say though, it was pretty great that there was never any co-pay or any insurance questions asked. God bless the NHS! I definitely have had my reservations regarding the NHS when moving out here. I paid about $900.00 to get myself health insurance for 3 years while I'm here. That isn't much considering what we pay back home right???? The kids are FREE since they are British citizens. Again, thank God for the NHS!
Between the trips to Burton to get this kid checked out, we managed to open bank accounts, buy a car, obtain cell phones or mobile phones as they call it out here and Steve started work last Tuesday. I also joined a gym and have taken 4 classes. It has a huge indoor pool which I've been taking the girls to every day while Steve is working. We also applied to get Lottie into school. The kids start school out here at 4 years old. Hopefully we will hear something within the next few days.
Next up.........A house! We have been looking like crazy, but haven't committed to anything thus far. Purchasing a house is a huge deal, so we want to make sure it is exactly what we are looking for and will accommodate all the crap we brought from the states. Speaking of.......our container has yet to arrive. It left Charleston about a week after they said it was going to. It looks like now we are looking at or around the end of the month.
All in all though, everything has moved pretty quickly and we've had some fun as well.
Here's a look back at the last three weeks we've spent in England!
There is a dry ski slope not far from us that I'm sure I'll be using when the cold weather hits. In the meantime, Lottie and I rode the toboggan run. It was so much fun. She loved it! However, Stella was JEALOUS to say the least. Pretty sure she cried the entire time Lottie and I were on the run. That Stella is a mama's girl if I've ever seen one.
Steve's dad is somewhat of a whiskey connoisseur.............. He only drinks the good stuff. I'm slowly learning my way around all the different brands. With that said, this booze could last Steve's parents for ages. They only have one whiskey each at night. Steve's dad has a whiskey and water and Steve's mom has a whiskey and diet lemonade.
Took the girls out to watch the Liverpool game in a pub. Following the game, the girls jammed out to Taylor Swift's Shake It Off (their favorite song).
An English wedding................. Can't beat a 12 hour wedding festivity. Steve's great friend Simon married his long time partner Louisa. They are such a lovely couple who have been together for 20 years. They have a daughter, Sophie who is truly the sweetest thing ever. She loves Lottie, calls her "her American friend". They act like sisters when the two of them get together. It is so sweet!
Lilly, Stella and Lottie
"Little English girls"
Jen and I
She is one of my favorite English gals. She visited us in the states when she just found out she was pregnant with her little boy Billy.
Rich and Steve
My heart be still........love these kiddos
Stella, Lilly, Sophie, Lottie and "the organizer"
Donna and I
Simon, Louisa, Craig and Chris (groom to right)
Jen, Angela, Donna and I
The little organizer arranging photo ops for the girls! Seriously, this kid has a bright future.
Both girls let me curl their hair for the wedding! I was literally in girly heaven. They are so independent when it comes to hair and clothes. This was a little victory for mommy!
Runaway future bride........................
The girls especially loved the dancing at the reception!
I definitely requested wayyyyyyyyyyyyyy tooooooo many Taylor Swift songs for the girls! There is no telling what the DJ thought of this American girl!
Our new car
One morning the four of us headed to Skegness "Skeggy" to see the seaside. Let's just say that we certainly weren't in Carolina anymore!!! The beach was massive and MUDDY! Lottie (our typical girly girl said it was disgusting and refused to walk through the mud to get to the sea!) Stella on the other hand loved it, kept saying, "Jump in Muddy Puddles". I thought for sure she was going to bust it in the mud! Besides the mud, it was pretty cool to see the North Sea. There is a wind mill farm out in the sea to preserve energy.
The area where I am walking from and where Stella is running back to is all MUD. As you can see, there is a boardwalk, some sand, MUD, more sand, then the sea. Lottie and I did ended up finding a few cool sea shells that we picked up to take home.
Fish, chips & mushy peas by the sea - can't beat it!
Skeggy is like Myrtle Beach circa 1997. It reminded me of all the Spring Breaks spent cruising the strip.
Lots of hanging out with grandma and granddad!
A walk through the woods with my girl! She has become quite the walker since moving to England. The girl walks miles and miles and never complains!
The girls have a new found love affair with the ice cream man. He shows up every day around 2:30 p.m. and parks right outside grandma's house. Of course, grandma can't resist buying them ice cream, so just about every day they get a cone. Truly, it is the creamiest, best ice cream I think I've ever eaten!
We also attended Woodstock in Whitwick. It was a music festival right outside our front door practically. It was so much fun! They had a ton of cover bands. Kiss and Iron Pythons were by far the biggest laugh! They put on a great show. The girls had a great time!!!
Lottie & Lilly hanging with KISS
We also enjoyed a BBQ with friends, Richard and Vickie. You couldn't have asked for better weather.
I could go on for days and days about the various activities and what nots we've been doing, so I'll close for now. Let's just say, we are adjusting to life in the UK just fine. Everything seems to be moving right along............. Until next time...............