Tuesday, 21 May 2013

MIL & FIL's visit - part 1

We are so fortunate that where ever we've lived, we receive lots of visitors from Sydney; family and friends love to travel, and when they can, they include a stay with us in their itinerary.

MIL (mother in law) and FIL (father in law) have been to Dublin, Yokohama and arrived in Kings Worthy on Saturday morning.

My mum as also been to our three homes. Also holding a 100% score card is my godson. Not bad when you realize they all have to travel from Sydney!

Several people have been to two of 3 our homes, and a few have made it to one.

Mum holds the record for staying the longest time - 3 months in Dublin tho MIL and FIL will come close this trip (but they pop off for mini trips during the time they are with us, while Mum stays with us the whole time). B&E hold the record for the most visits to one address.

MrsH gave me a red leather bound journal when we left Sydney and we've used that as our Visitors Guest Book. We all love reading thru who's been and when, and the memories of their visit.

We love hearing Aussie accents fill the house; we love the conversations and giggles; we appreciate the time we can indulge in their company rather than the flying visits we have when we're in Sydney and try to see everyone.

The other benefit to hosting guests is the sight seeing. We get to do favorite things (at least) one more time, and some things for a first time as we save them up. It means, that by the time we're done living somewhere we know it (slightly) better than (some) locals. Like most expats, we live somewhere for such a short amount of time we have a common desire to see and do as much as we can within the time we have.

MIL and FIL are here for 11 weeks (yes, you read right, 11 weeks) so there'll be quite a few chats to be had and LOTS of things to chat'n'share.

After unpacking bags and settling in, we went to Fishers Pond for lunch. It's quickly become a favorite destination for good food and a great view over the pond. Looking forward to going on a sunny day. They followed G and had James Martins famous beef'n'merlot pie.

Sunday, we strolled St Hilliers Gardens, something we'd held off doing as we knew MIL and FIL enjoy gardens. They are having a sculptures event which made it very enjoyable. While watching the Chelsea Flower Show on the BBC this evening, we learnt that St Hilliers has been part of the Show for decades and has won 100 Gold Medals.

Beautiful views
Blossoms remind us of Japan
The artwork was positioned in magic surroundings
Loved the lines and shape of this structure overlooking the lake
Such a pretty sculpture, making the most of the lake
The dragonfly would be really special on a sunny day
There's a vast azalea garden and the colors were incredible
A bed of tulips
Hilliers Home and a nice place for afternoon tea
Fun in the children's garden

Monday, we did a guided tour of Winchester Cathedral. I strongly recommend if you haven't been to Winchester Cathedral and you have a chance to, you should. It's history is incredible. There are guided tours every hour, every day (just double check the website), and during summer they run a series of lunchtime tours focusing on one aspect of the Cathedral each week. 

Winchester Cathedral - the longest nave in Europe

St Swithun's is buried here, as is Jane Austen and as Winchester was the Saxon capital of England, many kings and queens are buried here too. Jane Austen moved to College Street, Winchester with her sister, Cassandra to be closer to her physician and passed away several weeks after moving.

Another lovely girls day out, is to visit her home in Chawton and see where she did most of her writing. Walking thru the gardens, knowing she and Cassandra walked there too is an incredible feeling, but seeing her writing table and chair by the window gave me goose bumps. The pub across the road from the house is nice for lunch.

Above: Headstone in Winchester Cathedral.
Below: The house in College Street where she and Cassandra, her sister,
lived for a short time before she passed away

We had an enjoyable lunch, then picked MissM up from school.

Today they walked around Winchester a bit more, while I had brunch with MsS who has just got engaged to MrE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Congratulations xo

Meanwhile, G is THERE for the week, getting stuck into the new project and will be home Friday.

It's all go at our house,

With friendship


  1. Ms S getting engaged to Mr E....sounds in itself like an event from a Jane Austen novel! I hope I'm not the only blog reader who is getting so excited about eventually knowing exactly where THERE actually is.....I'm having my own private bets on the destination!!

  2. I'm glad you're enjoying the suspense of THERE :)
    Not long to go and I'll be able to share where THERE is and what it has to offer.

    Where are your private bets??????? I'm so curious

  3. My private bets were wrong! I had somewhere like Milan, Madrid or Barcelona in mind.....it had to be somewhere that your husband could commute to and from for a few weeks - that was my reasoning!

  4. Very good reasoning, and very lovely destinations. We would have been very happy with any of them. x