North America, Europe · 14 Days · 80 Moments · June 2018

The Eker’s European Adventure

12 July 2018

NuNu and JoJo at Square d’Anvers having fun on the slides while Boo and Moo enjoy playing soccer with some local Parisians⚽️
Luxembourg Garden
L’Annexe café brasserie on the Boulevard du Palais... NuNu and JoJo ordering from a menu for the first time...
The Fontaine Saint-Michel depicting the Archangel Michael wrestling with the devil.
The Pont Neuf is the oldest standing bridge across the river Seine in Paris.
The Catacombs of Paris are underground ossuaries established in 1810 to eliminate the overcrowded Parisian cemeteries, holding the remains of more than six million people.
...taking the subway to the Catacombs of Paris...

11 July 2018

...venturing to Place du Tertre in Montmartre to see local artists and the beautiful architecture...
Boo going full French on us...while Moo poses in front of a chocolate replica of Notre-Dame in La Maison Georges Larnicol, a famous French chocolatier.
The family enjoying the playground and carousel at Square Willette in Montmartre, located in the shadow of the Basillica of Sacre Coeur.
Hard Rock Cafe Paris

10 July 2018

Arc de Triomphe standing at the western end of the Champs-Élysées, built to honor those who fought and died for France in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars.
On top of the Eiffel Tower with views looking north towards the Jardins du Trocadéro and west towards Pont de Bir-Hakeim.
...taking the bus to the Eiffel Tower there really anything to say...?

9 July 2018

Yes...fresh French bread is really good 🥖 ❤️
Boo just hanging in the bus...
The Panthéon was originally built as a church but now functions as a secular mausoleum.
Pont d’Arcole
Moo pictured on the Pont d’Arcole, the first complete wrought iron bridge completed in 1856, with a collection of the controversial “love locks”.
...NuNu with a spontaneous pose 🕶👜😍 ...bronze statue of Charlemagne, King of the Franks, the first Emperor of Western Europe around 800AD, known as the Carolingian Empire.
...views of Notre-Dame de Paris “Our Lady of Paris" completed in 1345... The gargoyles of Notre-Dame are thought to ward away evil spirits; however, the gargoyles actually serve as rain spouts redirecting runoff from the walls and preventing erosion.
Fontaine du Palmier was built between 1806 and 1808 in the Place du Châtelet to commemorate Napoleon Bonaparte’s victories in Egypt against the Ottoman Empire and provide fresh drinking water to the population.
The Louvre...lucky enough to have my beautiful family there...
...views of the Louvre and the more modern Louvre Pyramid designed by architect I.M. Pei, which serves as the entrance...
...enjoying Latte art from a master barista at “Les Petits Rolls” while the kids enjoy a game of table tennis... And right outside the door...a self cleaning public toilet...Paris certainly needs more of these😜

8 July 2018

The Gare du Nord is the train station to Northern France and to international destinations in Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, and the UK. The station was designed by the French architect Jacques Hittorff and opened in 1864. The Gare du Nord is the busiest railway station in Europe servicing 214 million passengers annually. Other views include a breathtaking view down Rue Rodier, the location of our apartment. The Parisian network of interconnected streets really is magnificent for its architecture and vistas if you take the time to look. NuNu and JoJo are enjoying the view from our 3rd story balcony. Moo having her first macaroon in Paris...

7 July 2018

Walt Disney Studios Paris with views of Ratatouille: The Adventure, the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, Studio Tram Tour: Behind the Magic “reborn”, Toy Story Playland, Cars Quatre Roues Rallye, and a random picture of our home during our time in Disneyland Paris, Ranch Davy Crockett.

6 July 2018

...enjoying a great show and some fun family time at Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show at Disneyland Paris
Sleeping Beauty’s Castle
Disneyland Park Paris with views of Main Street, U.S.A., Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, Buzz Lightyear’s Laser Blast, and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Peril, Le Carrousel de Lancelot, Big Thunder Mountain, Les Voyages de Pinocchio, and more...

5 July 2018

Sword Beach, was the code name given to one of the five main landing areas of Operation Overlord along the Normandy coast. As my family enjoyed the beach, I reflected on the sacrifice of those who served and died to liberate Normandy. To imagine such a horrific seen on this peaceful, serene beach was unimaginable. The Kieffer Commandos Monument “La Flamme” memorializes the sacrifice of the French commandos who came to shore during the early morning hours of D-Day to clear obstacles from the beach.
Mémorial de Caen is a museum and war memorial in Caen, Normandy commemorating World War II and the Battle for Caen. On June 6, 1944 Operation Overload was launched resulting in the death of 20,000 civilians in Normandy. This accounted for a third of all French civilians killed during the Second World War.
...making our way to France via Easyjet...

4 July 2018

Not like 4th of July in the states...but better than nothing!
Regent Street...a shopper’s delight...😁
Happy 4th of July 🎆
Boo trying to “phone home” only to find that there is actually no phone 😱
A view of Wellington Arch that supports a bronze sculpture of a quadriga with Nike, the winged goddess of victory and the Wellington Monument depicting an 18 foot high statue of Achilles by the sculptor Richard Westmacott, produced from melted-down captured enemy cannon.
...a mounted trooper of the Household Cavalry on duty at Horse Guards...
...touring London on the Big Bus
...more views from Potters Field Park
The “Original” Hard Rock Cafe opened on June 14, 1971 in Mayfair, London by Americans Isaac Tigrett and Peter Morton.

3 July 2018

Piccadilly Circus is a public space of London's West End that has morphed into a tourist attraction known for its large video display and neon signs “vis-à-vis” Times Square in New York City.
Trafalgar Square, a vibrant public space located in Westminster frequented by artists, performers, and demonstrators.
Natural History Museum
...having some fun on the bus
Green Park
Buckingham Palace
Boo and Moo enjoying sweet treats at Green Park...
London Bridge Station...our first foray onto the London subway...
Potters Field Park...a beautiful public space overlooking Tower Bridge and the River Thames.
Tower Bridge is a combined bascule and suspension bridge completed in 1894 spanning the River Thames.

2 July 2018

Sea Life London
...despite my own personal “moans and groans”, the kids really enjoyed Shrek's Adventure...
...cooling down with a little help from Starslushy...
...views from the London Eye including Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament; unfortunately, during our visit Big Ben was undergoing restoration.

1 July 2018

The stark contrast of the south facade of St. Paul’s Cathedral viewed from the modern silhouette of the Millenium Bridge.
Enjoying “Fish and Chips” at the Centre Page. Formerly known as “The Horn Tavern”, the earliest mention of the ‘The Horn’ dates back to the 1660`s. It was previously used as a meeting place for the Freemasons since 1754 and also rumored to be a meeting place for Guy Fawkes. ‘The Horn’ was partially destroyed by the Great Fire of London, rebuilt, and then survived the Blitz.
St. Paul's Cathedral is an Anglican cathedral designed by Sir Christopher Wren dating back from the late 17th century after the Great Fire of London.
Tower of London, a historic castle located on the north bank of the River Thames in central London, housing the Crown Jewels.
Remnants of the “London Wall”, built by the Romans around “Londinium” in the late 2nd and early 3rd century located adjacent to Tower Hill Garden, where we were able to enjoy a brief respite from the sightseeing.
10 Trinity Square, former headquarters of the Port of London Authority.
The Church of St. Dunstan was originally built in about 1100 and rebuilt in the early 1800s. The church was severely damaged in the Blitz of 1941. The portion of the church that survived the bombing are the tower and steeple and north and south walls. Open-air services are occasionally held in the church.
Monument to the Great Fire of London, a Doric column that commemorates the Great Fire of London that started on September 2, 1666. The Monument is 202 feet in height and marks the site of St. Margaret's, the first church to be burnt down by the Great Fire.
...views from the “modern” London Bridge that spans the River Thames connecting the City of London and Southwark since 1973.
...looking southward on Saint Thomas Street
...more pictures from the Shard.
...a panoramic view from the Shard looking east towards Tower Bridge and the HMS Belfast. from the top floor of the Shard
...making our way to view “The Shard”, the tallest building in the United Kingdom, pictured in the distance. The Shard is a 95 story skyscraper, designed by Renzo Piano that stands 1,016 feet high.
Our Boo, NuNu and JoJo running down Bermondsey Street...
...having ribs and burgers at Morley’s

30 June 2018

Viewing Stonehenge in Wiltshire, England. The prehistoric monument that consists of a ring of standing stones (each around 13 feet high and 7 feet wide and weighing around 25 tons) constructed between 3000 BC to 2000 BC.
Boo & Moo learning about Stonehenge.

29 June 2018

NuNu and JoJo getting reading for their first international flight with the rest of the family...