Cakes! Scones! Sponge! Learning to bake like a Brit

britishbaking 2

If there is one thing we have learned about the residents of this island we live on, it’s that they love baked goods. Cake comes up in conversation even more frequently than the weather. One of the most popular things on TV is the Great British Bake Off, a show which I suspect we’re going to have to start watching if we ever want to truly assimilate. Continue reading

There’s something going on in Scotland


Our tiny little home country is parading about on the world stage these days. Even American news outlets seem to be aware of the upcoming independence referendum in the land of haggis and bagpipes. As usual, the news jesters seem to be doing the best job of covering this story. Here’s John Oliver’s take: Continue reading

Western Highlands: Ullapool

Ullapool 3

Sunset in Ullapool

When we moved to Scotland, we started asking everyone we met for travel recommendations. “What’s your favorite place to visit?” “Where should we go first?” Often the answer ended up being something along the lines of “just drive up and down the whole west coast of Scotland.” The first chance we got, we did just that. Our first destination (after a spontaneous stop for a tour of Dalwhinnie Distillery) was Ullapool. Continue reading

Life in Edinburgh: jumping from summer to fall

Edinburgh Festival Fireworks

The fireworks signifying the end of the Edinburgh International Festival (as seen from our new kitchen window).

August in Edinburgh was a whirlwind of activity: long days filled with festivals, tourists, and fireworks. And then September comes, and the sunsets are suddenly much earlier than they have been, and there’s a tiny, delicate whiff of fall in the air. But that’s not all that is different.

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Comedy at the Fringe: A cheat sheet for Americans

Some of the many Americans in town for the Fringe.

Some of the many Americans in town for the Fringe.

Lots and lots of Americans visit Edinburgh for the Fringe Festival. Hopefully, many of you are here to enjoy some of the delightful British and international comedy acts performing here this month. To help you get the maximum amount of enjoyment out of these shows, we’ve put together a little cheat sheet of cultural references which are popular in Britain this year, which may not be familiar to those of you who live on the other side of the pond. Continue reading

Edinburgh: Gay for Theater at the Fringe

Flyers and crowds as the Fringe takes over Edinburgh's Royal Mile

Flyers and crowds as the Fringe takes over Edinburgh’s Royal Mile

What a wonderful first week at the Fringe it has been. We have ticket stubs and show flyers coming out our ears, we’re sleep-deprived, and the pedometer on my iPhone is very proud of me. I’ve seen 31 shows already (just 3,162 left to go and I’ll have seen them all).

Looking at the top-rated shows on our theater list at the moment, there’s a theme that runs through many of them: gay gay gay. Some are serious dramatic works, some are hilarious comedies, and some manage to be both at the same time. Continue reading

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