Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Spooky Fun!

Happy Halloween! We kept a pretty low key night because we celebrated my birthday with friends yesterday.

We did do something scary though--we watched Rocky Horror Picture Show fully through for the first time. Let's just say we stared at the screen in amazement that it became such an iconic film. Scary!

I had a great afternoon! Because the school's internet has so many restrictions, I went to a friend's house to update my iPad. While I was there I realized I could FaceTime my mom, and she was able to answer! She also had my adorable niece with her so I was able to play with her over the video chat. The chance to see them and talk to them made me feel a little closer to home.

I can't wait to be able to decorate for holidays again. I have tubs full of seasonal things back home that I can't use while I'm here!

Now that we've been here a couple months, I feel like I have a better grasp of how I should have packed. Watch for a post in the next few days for hints and tips, especially if you are planning a trip abroad soon.

All my love and prayers to families on the east coast. Everyone knows I love NYC and I've always wanted to see the famous boardwalk.

And now, here's a photo to show just how adorable my niece is. She wins every photo contest possible in my opinion! Happy Halloween everyone, enjoy the candy and fun!

What happened to Halloween? (Yes, I'm still alive)

There once was a time where a small Raymond (Yes there was a time when I was small) eagerly asked his parents to let him be a Power Ranger for Halloween. He looked and looked until he found the perfect Ranger costume as it is difficult to pick the best color (Which is always Green by the way) with his candy bag in one hand and his short saber in the other they ventured into the neighborhood to score as much candy as they could and see all of the other costumes there were to be seen.

I remember when my problems were as simple as, "How much of this candy can I eat before mom catches me." But really what has happened to Halloween? It used to be a fun time for people to dress up and explore the night with their families and just so happen to get free candy for looking awesome in their costumes. At least that's how it is in my mind because now I hear that trick or treaters are almost a thing of the past. Are we becoming less trusting of others? Or has Santa finally beat Halloween for good, since last week you could walk into a store and see more Christmas than anything October.

All that aside we're still having a fantastic time, each day better than the last, and I hope that streak continues! There are still a few more things on my list I'd like to do so lets hope it happens! A special shout out to all of my choir peeps in Wichita I miss you all dearly!

Take care! Happy Halloween :D

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

My fantastic birthday!

Many thanks to all of my friends and family who sent me well wishes on my birthday! Thanks to everyone I had a fantastic day.

Raymond spoiled me from the start, with chocolate at midnight and a whole day of adventure ahead. Thanks to him, I have a new pair of shoes, ate at my favorite noodle bar, saw the James Bond 007 Skyfall movie, and even had a piece of red velvet cake! Nothing can compare to my mom's cake, but it was nice to still find some here.

I missed Kansas and my family a lot, but Raymond and my new English friends kept me busy all day so I never had time to stop and dwell on it! To finish off the day we carved pumpkins, roasted the seeds, and delighted in the Chianti we brought with us from Italy. Delicious!

I know I'll always remember this birthday abroad. I feel so blessed with this opportunity to see new places and meet new people. Although we miss home every single day, we also know that this semester is fleeting. We're already halfway through our time here! We recognize every day as a gift, and realize we will be home with our families, and back at school and work before we know it.

Here are some pictures from our wonderful day out! Enjoy!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Villa Villa Villa!!

Villa! Villa! Villa!

Raymond and I attended our FIRST Premier League Football (Soccer) game today! We went to go see the Birmingham team, Aston Villa, in a stadium with about 33,000 other fans.

Although the game ended in a draw, it was fun to watch! I've never seen so many people get so emotional over a soccer game before. It was cool! They don't care about basketball or American Football, but the people in this part of the world LOVE their soccer!

It was really really cold in the stadium (winter is coming, or already here!), but we made the best of it and tried an interesting drink our friend Nate bought for us. It's basically beef broth, but I have never seen it sold as a coffee alternative!

After the game we warmed up in the bus and got our favorite Chinese for dinner. It does feel like winter is here... I just want to curl up with a book!

MANY happy birthdays to Allison Aday back home. Wish I could be there to celebrate with you!

Our other mission for tonight? Find new costumes for Tuesday and Wednesday!

Friday, October 26, 2012

British Zombie Attack!

We had a great night running from Zombies! The student union hosted a "Zombie Ball" for Halloween and things were festive. Although we chose to represent America with our costumes, there were plenty of zombies to run from.

A lot of the students living in halls get really into the themed night. The student union also hired a band to play live, adding to the fun. Find some pictures of us below!

Our costumes were 110% completely stereotypical of Americans, but we were just having some fun. It was particularly amusing when we realized hardly any of the students knew what a "grill" was. No, not the cooking kind.

Tomorrow we are going to a real "football" game (soccer)! It's here in town but it we have tickets to see a professional team. Needless to say it will be a cultural experience for us.

Happy Haunting! And make sure check out our vlog for the night, we feature a special spooky guest!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Childhood memories

What have we learned in the past couple of days?

1.Apparently this weather is normal.

2. Our sleeping clocks need a major reset.

3. Halloween Town 1 and 2 are quite possibly the corniest, silliest, most ridiculous Disney Channel movies we ever fell in love with as kids. If you have some fond memories of them, keep it that way: do not, I repeat DO NOT decide to watch them again on youtube (I warned you). We thought it might help us get into the October spirit... instead it just made us moan at the bad humor.

Let's take a poll. Where should we catch a train to next? Stratford? Manchester? Liverpool? Cardiff? We need help deciding!

Here's a picture to help bring back your memories of Halloween Town. Gotta love the '90s.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Halloween weather... and zombies

I have another cold! I don't understand, I hardly get sick in the states (maybe one cold a year), and I've already had two different versions since we arrived. Sniffle. Sniffle. Where are the tissues?

Campus was pretty low-key today because all the classes were cancelled for graduation ceremonies. All of last year's third year students who finished classes over the summer officially graduated today (I guess it takes a long time to finalize assessments).

We've had some interesting weather the past few days. Raymond keeps calling it horror film weather, but really it's just that we've had a never ending layer of fog over the entire area. There is some misting rain, but mainly just fog and no sun. The fog is so thick it looks we could grab it with our hands from our third story windows. It also makes for some eerie parking lots at night.

Today I went with some girls here to find some other shops within walking distance. It's nice to know there are a few more places we can go without catching the bus!

All the students are preparing for the Zombie Ball this Friday and a weekend full of Halloween celebrations. We're still thinking of costumes, but there are some ideas in the works. I also might get the chance to carve a pumpkin after all, next week!

Even though there aren't very many fall decorations around, it appears to me that the university scene at least likes to celebrate Halloween!

My mama sent me a package for my birthday. :) I can't wait for it to arrive!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Sunday Roast

Tonight, Raymond and I were introduced to the Sunday Roast. It's apparently an English tradition (I didn't know) to have a giant meal on Sundays including some kind of roasted meat. Tonight we had some delicious chicken and beef!

We had a great time hanging out while the British did the cooking. What we soon found out is that their "Sunday Roast" is a lot like an American Thanksgiving... they didn't like it when I said that out loud. It prompted a lot of discussion that ultimately ended with us arguing for the validity of our American holiday!

We had a feast of meat, mash (wonderful mashed potatoes), roasted carrots, stuffing, other veggies, and most deliciously: yorkshire puddings.

Raymond and I had never tried them before, but they are delicious! They're basically like the English version of a dinner roll but with a slightly different flavor. We might have to look for some in the grocery stores when we go home for Christmas...

It was a great night, and our first "real" home cooked meal since we arrived two months ago (that's a long time). It also made me happy because back home my family has a big meal every Sunday night where we all come home and join around the dinner table.

What were they missing? Cream corn. I think I might have to make it for next time! Our new friends also keep insisting we Americans make pancakes differently, something we are going to have to take to the test. I see a pancake competition in the future!

After dinner (and a fire alarm... not ours!) we had some great conversation and I discovered something fantastic! Apparently enough people love the movie Hocus Pocus that the full version is available on YouTube. We then, of course, had to watch it and get in the mood for Halloween this upcoming week. Hey, we're '90's kids... don't judge. :)

Tell me, who else remembers Hocus Pocus? Halloween Town is the next movie on the list!

Yes, we did gather round on the floor. In the hallway.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Christmas in October

Another great Saturday! Today we woke up to go into town with a group of friends. I wore my new boots (love them) and found a belt to match for a pound (win). Raymond also found a comic and game store perfectly suited for him.

We walked around and had surprisingly great weather! I always remember to appreciate the sun when we see it, since it isn't that often. Today was warm and sunny!

As we got off the bus, I noticed something different about the city center area... Christmas lights! The lights have already been hung all over the shopping area and main street of town. I don't know when they will turn them on, but it's true... they start Christmas early here!

To all the "no Christmas before Thanksgiving" folks at home, you probably wouldn't like it!

Speaking of which, my parents are coming to visit in November! They have always wanted to visit this part of the world, and what better time than now, when their daughter is here? I'm so excited! They are coming to spend a few days in London, see Birmingham and meet the school, and hop over to Ireland for a pint before they leave. I'm so excited!

Something GREAT about an early Christmas here is that I've already eaten a chocolate orange! How many readers love these in December? I always used to receive them in my stocking and so I have a mild Christmas obsession with them. Chocolate + orange = Joy to the World. Perfect.

Anyway, they're already in stores here. Love it!

Friday, October 19, 2012

I miss my car!

We had a great day, but it was long! After a disrupted night of sleep due to a fire alarm in the middle of the night I had a lecture on Finance first thing in the morning. After lunch we went on an adventure!

I had heard about a giant shopping mall a ways away but we hadn't seen it yet. Today we went to go find it. We hopped on a bus and rode... And rode... It took us over an hour but we finally found the end of the line, and the shopping area.

It was great! Actually, it most resembled the USA of anything I've seen in England so far (which might have been part of the reason I liked it). It's nice to find things that remind you of home!

After enjoying several hours of walking around (and finding me a new pair of boots--my right heel pretty much fell off on my other pair), we went to head home.

We were pretty sure we had missed the last bus that would take us straight to our neighborhood, but we didn't think it would be a big deal to catch a different bus to a connecting location and switch. Wrong.

When we got to the bus stop we found out there was only ONE bus that went back to Birmingham at all, and it went in the wrong direction. And we just missed the only one within the hour.

Raymond helped me resist the urge to take $50 out of an ATM and call a taxi. Three hours later and a couple buses we finally made it back to the school.

I never would have guessed I would learn patience from public transport. I've never used it in Wichita! It's really a blessing to live on campus here. Instead of leaving the house two hours early to catch the bus, we can walk five minutes out of the dorm and into the classroom. So thankful!

And... My birthday is in 10 days!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Christmas in Paris... or at least the first weekend of December

Guess what? Last night we booked a trip to Paris to see the Christmas markets! I LOVE Christmas, and I've always wanted to see Paris... I foresee a fantastic weekend!

Absolutely one of our biggest blessings in being here has been the ability to travel around. So far we've seen Rome, London, Oxford, Dublin, and Birmingham of course. Our trip to Paris is planned for December, and we are also planning on visiting Scotland right before we leave to see Edinburgh (and a very special friend, Linzi Allan! Alyssa Balding, you're welcome to join also!). I've heard Edinburgh will be beautiful and probably covered in snow for Christmas!

The costs are adding up, so we almost decided not to go to Paris. On the other hand, I said, "We can pay for $100 flights now, or $1200 flights later when we want to come back." That sealed the deal that we were going.

We had some great classes this week, learning about the West Midlands of England (where we are living) and playing around as business owners. The most important things we probably learned this week were:

1. Birmingham, England, was the birthplace of the industrial revolution (and has an interesting history because of it).
2. Maintaining an operational cash level is extremely important when starting up a business.
3. Our friend Kevin from Ireland had his first pint of Guinness in England when he came to uni, not Ireland. I still do not understand this one (sorry Kevin).

We stayed up late again last night to watch the debate. They certainly are never dull, which is good since they are not streamed until 2am our time!

Tomorrow we are going to check out a new part of the city we haven't seen before. Should prove to be exciting, and maybe filled with great window-shopping!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Raymond, meet the ocean!

We had SUCH a great time in Dublin! After a short flight delay (rain rain rain... go figure) we made it back to Birmingham.

This morning we got up early to check out of our hostel and take a train to the coast. I'm so glad we did, as we were able to see the water, hear the crashing waves, and eat fresh seafood. Delicious! Raymond is also claiming it as his first time seeing the ocean. We know it's more of a bay... but it's close.

Ocean! I'm here!

 Although it was cold, we were dry for most of the morning. We spent a couple of hours walking around the small town of Howth and the pier. After lunch we headed back to Dublin for a little window shopping before heading to the airport.

I absolutely loved Ireland. The music, the culture, the beautiful land... I understand why thousands of tourists visit every year. We passed a golf course on the train and I was so jealous. I would have loved to play in Ireland, even though it was so cold!

I uploaded about 70 Dublin photos on my Facebook page under the Rachel-Ray Abroad album, but here is a taste from today for our "blog only" readers!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Guinness. Pure Genius.

We started out our second day in Dublin with the perfect breakfast... A nice tall pint of Guinness!

First thing this morning we got up to go to the factory of the beloved Irish stout. We had a great time and learned a lot about the process. For example, I had no idea how much barley was used, or that Arthur Guinness had signed a 9,000 year lease! Yes, you read that correctly.

While in the factory we were given a sample of Guinness so that we could truly understand how it is made. Then we also received a full pint in the bar at the top of the building, where we were able to look out over the city. Beautiful!

For lunch we had some traditional fare, potato soup and Guinness bread, and were lucky enough to have some live performers start performing right as we ordered! I am certain I will miss this place in the future. I don't know of a single bar in Kansas that looks, feels, and sounds like a true Irish pub.

After touring the factory we went in search of some churches and the famous Trinity College library. At the library we saw the original Kell's Book, a beautiful handwritten copy of the bible dating from the 800s. We also saw the giant "Long Room," featured in the Star Wars movies. It was such a huge, beautiful room full of books! Hundreds of thousands of them, to be exact. Photos weren't allowed so I'll pull one off goggle so you can see it.

We also found the statue of Molly Malone. Now we understand why a man wrote a song about her...

After a great Persian dinner (I've never eaten Persian before!) we found the oldest standing pub in Dublin, arguably the oldest in Ireland. The Brazen Head dates back to year 1198!

We had a great day. I would love to go see the Cliffs of Moher tomorrow but they are too far away. That will have to wait for another day! We're settling for the closest coast instead.

Enjoy our photo collection for the day!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

A fair city indeed :)

Dublin! The Irish country is exactly everything I hoped it would be. Live music on every corner, friendly strangers sharing a pint, and a representation of almost every culture somewhere in the Temple Bar district!

We flew into Dublin this afternoon on Ryanair. It was an easy flight, less than an hour from Birmingham. Once we made our way into the city we started exploring!

The Temple Bar district is known all around the world. It is the very being of pub crawls and late night activity. We found a fantastic noodle bar place for dinner and went to find our group for the crawl.

Led by experienced natives, we went around 6-7 pubs in the area. Most of them had extensive history and had seen hundreds of thousands of visitors over the years. It was a great introduction to the city!

Tomorrow we are hoping to catch a tour of the Guinness factory and some museums. Apparently Trinity College is hope to the giant library used in the Star Wars movies.

We had a great time tonight. My Irish dreams were fulfilled when I heard a local group perform "Molly Malone" in an ancient pub, complete with bagpipes. By far, the best experience of the night was the live music all over. Oh, and we also tried something called "red lemonade" which is apparently only available here. It was delicious.

I really hope I can find a way to see some of the Irish countryside before we go home in December!

Friday, October 12, 2012

What a spectacle!

After a slightly confusing finance class this morning (let's just say I was a little sleep deprived... staying up until 4am to watch the VP debate made me better informed and a little amused but less awake for a class dealing with numbers), we went to go get Raymond's new glasses!

His old ones were literally about to snap in half, so last week we went to the optometrist. Thanks to the NHS he was able to get two pairs for about the cost of seeing a doctor back home. Everyone has designer shades here because they are so much less expensive!

We didn't know before we got here, but because we are registered students with visas we have full access to the NHS. Neither one of us have used it yet (the eye appointment doesn't really count because it's not through NHS directly) but it is nice to know it is there if we have a problem.

We also made fried chicken for dinner. YUM! I always love Raymond's recipe and it's so much better than KFC.

Tonight we are working on homework and packing in preparation for the morning. Ryanair is very strict about their baggage weight and size restrictions so we're trying to pack a single backpack each, as light as possible.

"In Dublin's fair city, where the girls are so pretty, he first set his eyes on sweet Molly Malone..."

I hope all my Irish dreams will become a reality in the next three days!

Below, new glasses!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

ASDA... the closest they have to Walmart

Big debate tonight--it's streaming online about 2am our time, but we're still going to try and watch it!

Today we went to a grocery store called ASDA, something the students here call the "British Walmart." It's probably the closest we have found to a Walmart, but it's hard to come close to the ridiculous scale of American superstores.

The exciting moment of shopping included an interesting escalator in ASDA. The store is two stories, so down the middle there is an escalator without steps. It's more like a giant moving ramp (or people mover, as Allison and Kayla might know them from the Denver airport). This interesting invention for the two story supermarket makes it possible to take full size shopping carts to both levels. Genius! They aren't necessary in Kansas because we simply make a bigger store instead of making it multiple levels.

We've been watching a lot of Dr. Who lately. Why not, it airs here first!

Counting down the hours to Ireland!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Please sir, may I have a pumpkin?

The floor above me is being especially loud tonight, which means no sleep for me but a blog for you! Just one of the perks of dorm life. :)

How about a culture blog?

Today we had a lecture on British identity and culture. It's interesting to learn about immigration trends to this area of the world, as they are completely different from back home. It's also interesting to note that the British still keep WWII memories and lessons close to their heart, even the younger generations. It makes sense, as so much of the current society was shaped out of post-war efforts.

Here is a bit of our history lesson (mind you, a very small portion and generalized. Also, feel free to correct me if I get something wrong).

During the war, pretty much everyone in Great Britain was treated equally. Even the rich were on food rations, and the bombers had no preference where the bombs landed, as long as they hit something. This led to many innocent civilians being killed, both rich and poor alike.

After the war, the government in charge and the people of the nation decided that everyone deserved to be helped out of the damage the war caused. All citizens deserved health care--hence, the NHS was born. Everyone deserved a job--and the government bought up industries to create more jobs (most of which have now been sold and privatized again because they realized private industries are generally more efficient). Education ages were raised to 16, with everyone having the chance to test into university. They also believed everyone deserved proper housing, since so much was destroyed in the war. Unfortunately this problem was not dealt with as well as the others, leading to some rather poor public housing that still stands today.

The war was many years ago, but it really influenced Europe both in mindset and subsequent policy. I know it was very important on US soil as well, but I hear more individuals talk about "the war" here than I ever have at home (because of when I was born).

We're getting ready for Dublin in a few days. Due to Ryanair baggage restrictions, I'm backpacking for real.

Enjoy October in the midwest! As far as I can tell, the English simply don't celebrate harvest time as we know it in Kansas. No corn mazes or pumpkins in sight. However, we do have some turning leaves. Have you ever seen ivy turn red before?

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Where's the bus? Ahh, chase it!

Hello home :) And all of our new avid English fan base!

We had a wonderful dinner tonight with Dr. Cheryl Golden. She came to visit with her sister to see what the school is about and what campus is like. If any Newman students at home are thinking about coming to England for a semester, she is the one to talk to (and I highly recommend subscribing to our blog as I'm recording all our hints and tips here)! In addition to running the history department at home, she's also taken on the giant role of study-abroad advisor (and did a fantastic job helping us get here, I might add).

Ironically, we realized we are all going to be in Dublin on Saturday, so we might be able to meet up again! She and her sister are taking a drive around Ireland for a few days, and I'm very jealous. I want to see the Irish countryside so badly, but I think this trip we are only going to have time to see Dublin.

We had an interesting time getting home tonight. As you know, we've had to learn public transportation here (meaning the bus). The thing about relying on the bus is that you never know exactly how long you will be waiting for it and most of the time they do not announce the stops so you have to count and pay attention to know when to get off.

Tonight, our bus route was just completely off due to major construction. We had to chase after a bus to see where it stopped (because it was detoured), wait for the next one (half an hour later) and then when we thought we were almost home the road was suddenly blocked off! Thankfully it was a nice bus driver and he ended up taking us right to the school via detour, but boy it was an adventure.

Like I said, when taking the city bus you never know quite how long it will take or where you will be walking from.

We've already been here a month, can you believe it? Christmas is going to come so fast.

Avengers... obsession?

Well, we were supposed to go to Stratford-upon-avon yesterday except for the unfortunate event of me sleeping through my alarm. We missed the train, and I was very sad that we couldn't go to Shakespeare's home town! Thankfully it's only about an hour from here and the tickets were pretty inexpensive, so we will take another day to go. Still, it was a bummer. We spent the day doing homework and watching an Avengers Marathon instead.

Dr. Golden just called to say she had arrived in London, so we will see her tonight! She's coming to visit the school and check out the area. I know all her contacts here will love having a face to her voice, and we will love to have a chat over dinner.

On Friday we went to see Looper. I have mixed reviews about the movie (it was good but a little harsh, and not as complex a story line as we were hoping), but it was fun to go to the cinema here for the first time.

Raymond found a friend. A little scary, right? In other news, we go to Ireland this week!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

So. Much. Chocolate.

Here they are available for every holiday!

Cadbury Chocolate. At home, we consider it a luxury. I love Cadbury Eggs, as does all but one member of my family (she's crazy). We used to battle over them in Easter Egg hunts. When things got too rough, my mom was forced to make things "more fair" and put the exact same number of chocolate eggs in every basket from the start. :) Then those of us who were really in love with Cadbury Eggs would give away other precious candy items to trade for more. After all, you can only get them once a year! In Kansas, that is...

We didn't know before we came, but Birmingham is home to the creation of Cadbury Dairy Milk, the famous chocolate they use in all of their delectable products. Over 100 years ago Mr. Cadbury began to experiment in the back of his tea shop with cocoa beans, trying to come up with a delicious alcohol alternative (he was Quaker). A little while later he created chocolate as we know it today, with cocoa nibs, cocoa butter, milk, and sugar.

Although there are now two other factories in England to help with the material processing, Birmingham is still home to the single Cadbury Chocolate factory. In the early 1900's, Mr. Cadbury and his two sons were ahead of their time, building fantastic working conditions, housing, schools, churches, recreational sites, and beautiful parks for their workers. The result is a beautiful neighborhood, once in the country but now surrounded by city, and several generations of workers loyal to the Cadbury name. Although all of the chocolate is now made and packaged by machines, it used to be done by hand.

We went to visit Cadbury World today, the Willy Wonka Factory of Birmingham! I absolutely loved it. Not only did we get a ton of free chocolate, but we had fun and learned a lot about English history.

Did I mention free chocolate? They gave us about four candy bars each, liquid chocolate samples, and then let us make our own messy creation of chocolately goodness.

The museum has a lot to offer for children, but we had a lot of fun as adults. We even rode on a Cadbury themed train that reminded me of "It's a Small World After All" but much cuter.

Can you believe this is made of chocolate?
Great day, even if we have a stomach ache from too much sugar!

This is 1KG of Cadbury Dairy Milk!

In other news, this is our 60th post, and by tomorrow night we will reach 3000 page views! Thank you so much for all the support from home and our new English friends. We keep the posts and videos coming for YOU! If you haven't seen them lately, check out our vlogs on the top right hand side of the page. Raymond put together a playlist for our London trip and we will add one about Cadbury World tonight. Also, feel free to subscribe to our posts by email (also on the right) or become a follower with your gmail address. These are ways to make it easier for you to catch every update!

Much love,

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Am I an entrepreneur?

Another cold and rainy day in England, but I've cozied up in the wonderful library on campus to keep warm. They've done a fabulous job with the new building, including hundreds of comfortable study places and dozens of available computers for student access.

Today I'm working on homework for my new Business Start Up class. We finally got all of our technical glitches sorted in the school system, and now that I have access to the online classrooms I have to say, I'm impressed. The school uses a system the IT department designed (so I've been told), called MyNewman. In one place I can find my email, class schedule for the week, a media sharing location for students and staff, and Moodle, their version of Blackboard.

The system is so well integrated that students and staff can instantly interact not only through email and discussion boards, but also through videos, powerpoint presentations, and school-wide announcement boards. Basically, it runs really well and I could see unlimited possibilities if specific parts of the system were adapted for my Communication major back home.

An interesting thing about only meeting in the physical classroom once a week is that it is assumed part of the class will take place online. For example, in my first business class the lecturer introduced us to some ideas and then directed us to all the reading and interaction we needed to do throughout the week online. In the next class period we will discuss the online content and have an introduction for the following week.

I never really considered myself a business entrepreneur, but the test I had to take for my business class suggests that if I find the right idea to motivate me, I'm inclined to make a great business owner.

Once the work week is done we're going to explore Cadbury World (the Willy Wonka factory of Birmingham... yum!) and Stratford-upon-avon. I'm so excited to explore such a history rich town!

Here's our weather. A bit chilly!