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Back from the North

For the last week my family and I have been on an epic road trip to Scotland and back (believe me it is an epic trip when your kids are 2 and 5!) We had an amazing time, the weather was good, the kids behaved brilliantly and everyday was full  of artistic inspiration for me, so I thought I would share some of my photos with you and I am sure over the coming months the things I saw will start filtering into my glass work, we shall see!

The first place we stayed in Scotland was Lochmaben, I cannot recommend it enough as a place to stop for a day or two. The town has an interesting history with a trail around the historic buildings, the people were very friendly and there is a good range of cafes and shops to get some lunch. My kids were very excited as we were staying in a hotel, and my husband was very excited because our room opened onto the hotel beer garden, everyone was happy! The Crown Hotel made us so welcome and were really accommodating with the kids, which added to our relaxed mood. The town has an amazing sculpture trail showcasing the chain saw sculptures of Peter Balshaw around the Castle Loch, culminating in the ruins of Lochmaben Castle, great for clambering on!

We went on to stay with friends north of Glasgow in their amazing 17th century house in Muthall and then came back down to stay just outside Edinburgh in preparation for the wedding of my dear friends Ali and Olivia; we just had time to visit Linlithgow Palace. This ruined palace was the birth place of Mary Queen of Scots and is stunning and well worth a visit; as is the attached church of St Michaels which has stunning stained glass from the Victorian era and a wonderful modern window by Crear McCartney to celebrate the 750th anniversary of the church. The subtle combination of acid etching and painting were of especial interest to the skills I am working on presently and my thoughts will return to this window regularly!

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