An Exhibition of Fine Jewellery, Diamonds and Precious Coloured Gemstones

I attended an event last week and saw some of the most magnificent fine jewellery recently presented in London. These extraordinary jewels were created by a friend of mine, Ines Aitken. The exhibit was held at Simon Dickinson Gallery on Jermyn Street, the most fashionable street in London back in the 17th-18th centuryTo this very day Jermyn Street is lined with old shops that hold ‘royal warrant’, and still cater to the desires and whims of the royals and members of the court, and of course, the old rich (members of the British aristocracy), and the nouveau riche (like the Beckhams, Mittals, et al). Continue reading

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Banqueting House on Whitehall

Many years ago I started reading books about the iconic buildings in London not only because I love history, but I enjoy taking my visiting family and friends around town, and I wanted to be able to tell them about all these remarkable buildings that we pass by as we do the city tour. The Banqueting House on Whitehall is just one of those historic buildings in Westminster that was on my ‘must visit‘ list, and a couple of months ago I had the opportunity of finally visiting it for the first time. It is the only building remaining of The Palace of Whitehall that was destroyed by fire in 1698. Continue reading

Grateful for Many Things

This morning I woke up thinking about my family in the states, and reminiscing about the numerous trips we made to the US to join Jared’s family for thanksgiving celebration. A particular passage in the scripture came to mind as I was getting out of bed, 1 Thessalonians 5:18: “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”   Continue reading

A Time of Grief and Joy

That’s the shadow of the tree next to my mother’s headstone. Took that picture on the fifth anniversary of her ‘homegoing’, and I thought I was fine when I visited her at the cemetery. But I blubbered all the way home. And I remember I took a walk in the woods (my brother and his family live in a neighbourhood with loads of beautiful old trees surrounding a golf course), to pull myself together before heading back for lunch with my family. That was five years ago.  Continue reading

A Milestone and a Tale of Cake Disaster

Last week I was able to luxuriate in baking and cake decorating.  Lara, a church mate of mine, asked me last summer if I could do a cake for her Mum’s 80th birthday. I adore her Mum so, of course, I was happy to do it even if I am not good at baking or cake decorating. Continue reading

Oreo Chocolate Cake

I woke up this morning asking myself, “What’s going on in the world? I mean, in the political arena alone it seems like the world is going crazy. 🙂 And from whatever angle you look at it, the fanatical hype of political extremism abounds. I don’t know about you but I am sick and tired of all the political chatter on social media so I’d rather talk about food right now — about cakes, soups, comfort food — anything but politics! Continue reading

Visit to Admiralty House: One of London’s Historic Landmarks

It’s a shame that some of the most historic and architecturally significant buildings in London are closed to members of the public. One of them is Admiralty House, a building next to Horse Guards Parade on Whitehall. I have been curious about this building for many years. Every time I walk around Parliament Square and Whitehall I always think of three or four of my friends who could make an arrangement for me to visit this building. But I simply didn’t bother to ask anyone. Unexpectedly, last summer one of my friends phoned to ask if I was interested in visiting some of the government buildings that are closed to the general public. Of course, I answered ‘yes’ without any hesitation.   Continue reading