Saturday, July 21, 2012

bothwell castle

I had been looking forward to this day all week.  The weather channel had predicted a 0% chance of rain for today, and I was dreaming of sunny skies, shorts and flip flops.  Silly me, I live in Scotland!  Sure, there was a 0% chance of rain, but that doesn't mean the sun will be out.  GRRRRRRR.......

Anyway, we made the best of it by exploring the ruins of Bothwell Castle, just about a 30 minute drive from our place.

Here we are in the keep, looking up at what used to be the 3 floors of living spaces above.

Jason and Hayden recline in the great hall.

A tower overlooking the front of the castle and the remains of the chapel.

We found a few invaders.

Cupid, isn't he cute?

Run for your life!!!!

Jason tried scaling the walls of the former apartments.

Exploring the outside of the castle.

The kids attempted a siege of the castle.

It was a long way up!

I'm such a lucky girl.

Cameron picked out the girls' outfits today.  They wanted proper explorer's clothing, with the option of stripping down to shorts if the weather permitted.  She's gonna hate the picture someday... I'm gonna love it FOREVER!

We have found that ruins are the best places to take kids.  There's plenty of space for them to run, they're outside so they can yell and the best part is they can't wreck anything.  Plus, it's a Saturday in the summer and we have the place to ourselves.  We ate lunch in the castle courtyard and headed home, very satisfied with our visit to Bothwell.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

cruel summer

When we first kicked around the idea of moving to Scotland I had a small idea that perhaps we would be in for a shock in regards to weather.  I was a stupid, naive girl.  I am in a HUGE amount of shock concerning weather.  Take a look at this screen shot from our weather app:

At first I was trying to get used to Celsius but that was really messing with my head.  So that shot is from June and not much has changed in July.  We did get sun this week for a few short hours, so the kids and I did our best to get outside and soak up the vitamin D.

Despite the rain, life must go on.  So I was pretty excited this week when this finally happened:

I hit 100 miles!  I bought this app back in April (I think?)  and since then I've had a love/hate relationship with it.  It's pretty fabulous when I remember to bring it with me, turn it on and the GPS actually works.  All the other times, it's rubbish.  I don't know if I'll continue using it, as I'm pretty set in my routine of running 3-4 times per week, 3 miles per run.  Rain or shine it feels good to hit the pavement and clear my head.

We beat the rainy day blues this week with a trip to the Glasgow Science Centre.  This place is amazing!  The kids and I spent hours checking out all three floors of science experiments, illusions and fun stuff.  Here are a few pictures from our time there:

Today we took a day trip to Inchmahome Priory on an island in Lake Menteith.  The priory was home to Augustine monks in the Middle Ages.  All that remains now are ruins and a beautiful island.  We braved the scattered showers to explore this small beauty.

the kids are sitting in the cannons' stalls

the remains of the chapel

the grounds of the proiry

hiking around the island

climbing the ruins

Despite the weather, we have plenty of things to keep us encouraged.  Our weeks are full with work, friends and our own loud, happy family.  The locals say that this has been the worst summer in recent memory, so I think they're trying to give us hope.  Until it clears up we'll carry on, braving the rain, wearing raincoats and wellies in July!