October 30, 2008

The Lastest..

[Despite how it may appear, Nate and I DO actually work, and not just traipse from one city to the next visiting friends and having photo's with babies! Work just isn't as fun to blog on :) ]

After a delayed London flight, two nights at home, numerous loads of washing and another 4:30am rise-time (!), we were on our way to NYC. Nate lost his voice mid-travels, and had to power through a weekend of playing (and sing/whispering), which thankfully still went down well with each church. But it has left him quite hoarse this week and we're praying it heals-up before NC.*

In light of Nate's more sickly state, Justin suggested we drive, instead of train, to Tarrytown (about 40mins North of the city). And after a day of traveling, that sounded oh so sweet to us! We left it in Justin's capable hands to organize and we were thankful for the teeny-tiny joy of the ride..
Aside from playing some tunes, we had the pleasure of meeting Happy Moffatt, our new godson. No, Happy is not his actual name... It's our current nickname for him, as it so aptly describes his state of being. He is one super happy little Moffatt and we love him.

As the wind chill dropped and the sun disappeared Nate and I didn't venture too far for the remainder of our visit. We took-in our usual haunts (and a couple of new ones - thanks Soph & Pete!), drank plenty of coffee, ate cupcakes and marveled at NYer's resilience to freezing cross-island breezes.

We were charmed by the city once again, and as we flew home with a view of the Island looking South, we were already itching to get back.

C & Nt.

*please pray for Nate's voice if you think of it. Currently, the down-low Darth Vader vibe isn't most ideal for his tunes.

October 20, 2008

The final UK days...

Having missed our connecting flight home tonight, we're still officially on tour and so we figure one more UK blog is allowed! (plus, it might help lift the spirits! Current status is a bit of a downer after the 4:30am start this morning).

We spent the reminder of our trip in Sheffield, having play time in the park, enjoying the quaintness of the area and soaking-up good-times with dear friends (and eating HEAPS of "aussie" chocolate). We were sad to leave...

Typical Sheffield street (Steph - does this look familiar?!)

J had us laughing at the number of times she could bump her head and not blink an eye, or her endearing quality of ending many stories with "silly me!".
F got the giggles at how much Nate said "awesome" and suggested that maybe "brilliant" was a good word to use too!
And little E's uniqueness is in the making...
Here's a few extra snaps, they tell the story better than we could considering our current energy levels!
Reesy interviewing Nate on Sunday night

Guitar time was a particular favorite

Perfect weather for hot chocolate

Last of the summer flowers

It's been a huge encouragement to spend time with the Rees' and see the work they're doing at Christ Church Fulwood - it is such a vibrant community of Christians and so receptive to the role Liz & Reesy have. It's very exciting to see how God has made this home for them, and it's a great reminder of His faithfulness in our own journey as well.

Nt & C

October 19, 2008

Sheffield Weekend Follies

We left behind the drizzly, busy streets of London for Sheffield - quite a change with its rolling hills and shaggy sheep... It's here that a true side of England can be seen - there are plenty of wellington boots, tweed jackets, tiny cars & extremely tiny country roads.

The time has been busy with gigs (and late-night drives) but it's all very worthwhile to have the excuse to visit with dear friends. Liz & Reesy graciously accommodated our late-night arrivals (twice!) and we've really enjoyed being a part of the family for a few days.

Here are some snaps from Saturday at Chatsworth House: (or Chatswoff, as we like to say it).
F was in charge of leading us to all the different sculptures on display...
The beautiful gardensYes, they are wearing winter attire and eating ice-cream - only in England!
Little E all rugged-up - cute as a button

CC Fulwood packed a bunch of students into one of the local cafes on Saturday for a chilled night of music and then we were back at the church for Sunday services. We had a great time connecting with the community again - it is a wonderful church of faithful believers, all very excited to have Nathan back, which was a great way to end-off this UK tour!
There may be one more UK blog left in us with some extra pics - lazy days with hilarious kids and good friends!


October 14, 2008

London Leg: Weekend Adventures

After two mornings of sleeping like we haven’t slept in years (is there such a thing as delayed jet-lag?), we have emerged with stories from the weekend…

Friday we hopped the bus to Oxford and despite the 2 hour journey (when we thought it would only take 1), we still managed to sneak-in a quick wander through the streets and pretty-ness that is this famous Uni town.

Nate played a great concert at St Ebbes Church, before we skipped back to London late that evening.

Saturday, with the sun still shining and aware of the rarity, we decided it was market day. So we walked with Kelly in the direction of her local hang, only to find the market completely empty!!

So we sat in the sun & got our morning coffee fix, before heading for Notting Hill. And if you want a market, Notting Hill will give you a market!! Oh yes indeedy...

I almost hyperventilated from the crush of people streaming down Portobello Rd, all looking for that little English antique treat or something resembling antique. I think it easily went for a mile, lined with stalls and stores of various wonders and bargains.
If the guy from antique road show had suddenly appeared to give the low-down on every stall, it wouldn’t have surprised us. It was a gorgeous day, in a gorgeous part of London..
That evening was Wandsworth, in Sth London, where we enjoyed our first pub gig of the trip. And the next day was back in London at All Souls. Nathan busted-out three services and another pub show that evening, all of which were a blast. There is nothing like singing, drinking Brits to really get things going! It was awesome to see them get into Nathan’s songs.

Time with friends definitely kept us from keeling-over during our marathon Sunday. Kelly was a trooper in helping-out. And Em & Gav meet us for lunch - we soaked-up the sun on Charlotte Street with some great Thai food and good chats. Afternoon snooze-trap successfully avoided!

Next stop – Sheffield and some Rees family time!

October 13, 2008

London Leg: Two Aussie’s & a big blue sky!

After 27hrs of “awake” time, en route to London, hauling gear up and down subway steps, we gladly crashed on Kelly’s floor in Whitechapel. And the next morning we were greeted by glorious, tourist-friendly blue skies…

So, we did just that.. We were tourists for a day! We hit all the usual suspects –
Big Ben
River Thames & the London Eye
Buckingham Palace
(which Nate had never seen, despite numerous London trips)Westminster Abbey*
A stroll through St James Park
And Harrods
Plus a few unexpected surprises…

Churchill's War Rooms, located underground near the Treasury, is where Churchill and his War Cabinet ran the British defense during World War II. Several of the rooms were untouched at the end of the war - everything left where it was & the lights switched-off. So it's remarkably well persevered, and an interesting little insight into British resolve too.

10 Downing Street... Or at least 10 Downing, plus two security gates and 4 police officers. This is as close as we got!
Cream Puffs – a classic little shop on Oxford St called Beard Papa’s that specializes in Cream Puffs! Nothing more or less – you pick your flavor (we went Chocolate Éclair, naturally), they give it a shot of puffy goodness, and for a £1.60 you’re cheering!

We soaked-up as much of London as we could and really enjoyed it. It’s such a diverse & bustling city – you never know what you’re going to encounter when you step out your door (especially where we’re staying, there could be curry flying your way in no time!) ☺

A few extra "London" snaps from our first days here...

The gigs started this past weekend with three pretty solid days (Oxford, Sth London & London). Lots of hauling up and down steps again!! ☺ But we had a great time and were overwhelmed by people’s excitement and enthusasim. I’ll post some stories from the weekend soon!

For now, it’s back to chilling-out on a more gloomy London Monday, enjoying sitting-still for a bit.

*Note: after paying my £12 at Westminster Abbey, I powered through AT LEAST 20 “points of interest” on the audio tour - King Henry’s and Queen Mary’s and their elaborate tombs, just waiting from some more modern-royalty insider goss - a bit of “behind the scenes” on Diana, even the Queen Mother would do. But nope.. not a peep. Slightly disappointing.. But educational none-the-less!