Today is was raining. In the states, that’s not that big of a deal but here with public transportation and 4 children it’s a different story. In North Carolina when it rains we pause and think, hmm, do I really feel like getting my coat on and getting into my car to go to my destination? My shoes might get wet and it’s a bit muddy. 

In London they laugh at the rain … not really … but they Keep Calm and Carry On into the rain. People are equipped, they have umbrellas and rain coats and I saw lots of boots. 

Today is Sunday and that means riding the bus for church, that means 4 children in the rain riding the bus. And they did it. Out we went with our umbrellas and rain coats. Lucy never misses a beat, rain or shine she smiles her way up the sidewalk and to the bus stop. 

The name of their church is Community Church Putney. A growing, vibrant church that loves the Lord. Here is their web site if you would like to know more about it.  http://www.communitychurchputney.com/community-church-putney–about-ccp.html 

Here is a short video of Lucy dancing at church  

http://www.youtube.com/embed?listType=user_uploads&list=benabele

At this temporary setting for CCP there is a beautiful pond right outside the front door, the kids get out of church and go explore and enjoy nature .. translation – find sticks, throw them and run through the bushes. Today our kids did the same thing they always do with the difference of the rain. Oh. Out they went and don’t you know it, down he went, into the mud. HA! New reality. No car, no change of clothes and a bus ride to make it home. Poor fellow, I bet he learned for the whole family the value of staying dry. 

Ben and the kids made that journey home but Kimberly, Penelope and I took a different bus and headed into downtown London to Harrods. 

I’m disappointed to tell you that it was uncomfortably crowded. The food court had long lines. The tea room had no open seating and it was such a large operation we needed a map, sadly, there was not one to be found. The store is like a mall with many different rooms. I imagine it would have been wonderfully fun to enjoy on a slower day. 

Kimberly and I both were ready to GET OUT of there. 
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Kimberley found a place in Kensington for us to eat. It was lovely! The rain had stopped and we walked to lunch, La Brasserie (http://www.labrasserielondon.com/) 

Here is an internet pic of the restaurantla

Happy to be inside we were greeted and quickly seated at our table. As we sat we heard laughter and conversation. The restaurant was humming with happy chatter. AND most of it was in French! The name La Brasserie is a french expression that means a type of restaurant with a relaxed setting, serving food all day. 

Our waiter was very attentive. We shared a wonderful meal. And, yes I was that obnoxious tourist that took pics of my food. Starting out I had a dark French roast with lots of cream. Kimberly had black tea with milk, very British of her. 

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Then we were surprised by our starter – Beef carpaccio Parmesan, rocket and truffle oil and pine nuts. The flavor was outstanding. The part that surprised us was that the beef tenderloin was raw! We took our first bite cautiously but after that we ate it slowly but enthusiastically. The mix of flavors were fresh, the rocket (arugula lettuce) a bit peppery, the parmesan cheese creamy and the pine nuts added a little zest. Delightful. IMG_2407

Sweet Kimberly lets me take her picture. 
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This was the main course, Risotto Funghi arborio rice, wild mushrooms, parmesan cheese and truffle oil. There were a lot mushrooms I didn’t recognize. The sauce was creamy and I think I detected a little wine on the mushrooms. We thoroughly enjoyed it. IMG_2410

We had this little sweet pea with us.  IMG_2412

She wanted to touch everything. Because of her sweet face she got a lot of attention. What is it about babies that makes even men stop and play with the babies? IMG_2418

We finished with apple strudel. IMG_2420

This was a fun and memorable culinary adventure with Kimberly and Penelope. IMG_2422We traveled by tube and bus and we got off at Barnes, which is near their neighbourhood so she could buy milk. Then we had a walk home that was like a scene in a movie. It was dark but the wet streets reflected the lights, people were going here and there. I could feel the cool fresh air and a little mist. We saw a lot of neighborhoods with local pubs or shops, we found sweetly fragrant hyacinths planted in pots. We chatted and walked, just happy to be together. Finally home, we were welcomed into their bright, warm home with smiles and hugs and “Where have you been so long” It’s nice to be missed. 

God is love. God’s love is so great that He gave His only Son to bring us into fellowship with Him. God’s love not only encompasses the world, but embraces each of us personally and intimately.    

—1 John 4:7-10border_graphic_with_swirls_and_a_heart_in_black_and_white_0515-0910-1419-2547_SMU-150x84