Life With Ashley




January 29, 2016

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Leggat Does London

If you follow my Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook, you already know that I spent New Year’s Eve in London, England with my husband.  We only had 4 days off, but we made sure to do everything we had wanted to do while we were there. I decided that I would blog today about the great (and not so great things) that we did while we were there, so that if any of you are thinking of going, you know what to hit and what to miss.

Seeya Sweden, Next Stop England!

Seeya Sweden, Next Stop England!

Hello London!

Hello London!

(Rating – Excellent, Good, Average, Poor)

Where to stay?

The Hub by Premier Inn at Covent Garden

Rating – EXCELLENT

Location is right downtown. Room is small but has everything you need. Extremely affordable. The staff is accommodating and knowledgeable about the city.  They knew we were celebrating a special occasion so they had chilled champagne delivered to us as well as free breakfast throughout our stay.  We will definitely be staying with them again!

Shower with rainfall spout and forward sprayer.. Heaven when you need to warm up after a long day in the rain!

Shower with rainfall spout and forward sprayer.. Heaven when you need to warm up after a long day in the rain!

Champs <3

Champs <3

What to do?

New Year’s Eve Fireworks

Rating – POOR

So I had heard a ton about the fireworks in London on New Year’s.  I have to say, we were disappointed.  It took us an hour and a half of walking (what felt like 20k) to find the location we were supposed to enter, as we had tickets to see the fireworks from the Waterloo Bridge.  We were sent in 100 different directions from the workers who seemed unprepared and uneducated about the event they were putting on. When we finally made it, the fireworks lasted about 10 minutes, and then we had the hour and a half walk home with 400,000 other people all being dispersed into the streets.  If you go to London on New Year’s, I’d suggest skipping this.

Freezing Cold after walking around for hours, but happy we finally found the bridge we are supposed to be on.

Freezing Cold after walking around for hours, but happy we finally found the bridge we are supposed to be on.

New Year’s Day Parade

Rating – EXCELLENT

One of the highlights of our trip!  We were invited for brunch at 1 Whitehall, where we had a delicious English breakfast and some champagne.  We then went to the street where we watched 3 hours of cheerleading, marching bands, magician acts, floats, miniature horses, and SO much more.  It was an absolute blast and something I will never forget.  This is a MUST DO if you are in London for New Year’s Day.  I will definitely be back next year, and might even be a part of the parade 😉

1 Whitehall Outside

1 Whitehall Outside

Loving this day!

Front Row ready for the parade to begin!

Front Row ready for the parade to begin!

About to be interviewed at the New Year's Day Parade

About to be interviewed at the New Year’s Day Parade

They're making fun of me because I'm cold. They assume Canadians live in igloos I think ;)

They’re making fun of me because I’m cold. They assume Canadians live in igloos I think ;)

London Eye

Rating – AVERAGE

Both Jeremy and I found the London Eye to be overrated.  The views from the top are very beautiful, but it really wasn’t worth the money to take a 20-minute ride around the Ferris wheel.  Positives are that the line up moved very quickly and there weren’t a ton of people stuffed in the pod with us.  I’d suggest seeing the same views from any of the bridges that cross the Thames River.

The London Eye from the bottom

The London Eye from the bottom

Oh Hi Big Ben

Oh Hi Big Ben

Cruisin'

Cruisin’

Ice Skating at The Tower Of London

Rating – EXCELLENT

A really fun activity in an unbelievable setting.  Another unforgettable experience.  We ice skated behind the tower walls where Henry the 8th had Anne Boleyn beheaded.  Legend has it that you can still see her roaming the tower at night holding her head in her hands.  Thankfully we didn’t see anything like that haha, but to skate around knowing the history surrounding us, was definitely a thrill.  I highly suggest this if you visit London in the winter.

Our first view of the Tower of London. There is a really creepy vibe here.

Our first view of the Tower of London. There is a really creepy vibe here.

So grand and eerie. Pictures don't do it justice.

So grand and eerie. Pictures don’t do it justice.

The hubs and I having the most incredible time.

The hubs and I having the most incredible time.

Original Bus Tour

Rating – AVERAGE

It was kind of hard to rate the bus tour as we only got to ride the bus to one stop before I lost the tickets (classic Ashley).  We went back to the information center, but they were unable to issue us new ones, so if you do decide to do the hop-on-hop-off bus tour DO NOT LOSE YOUR TICKETS!  From our brief time on the bus, it seems that it is best if you sit upstairs as the tour guide is extremely hard to hear from the bottom.

London By Night

Rating – EXCELLENT

Another one of our favourites.  This is an hour and a half bus tour showing you all of the best locations in London at night.  In my opinion, going at night was much better than the day, because you can see everything a lot clearer, and there weren’t hundreds of people standing in front of every attraction.  Our tour guide was incredible and funny, and this is where I learned the most about London.  I definitely suggest this tour if you don’t mind not being able to get off at the stops, and just want a tour of the major highlights of the city.

Absolutely in love with the architecture here

Absolutely in love with the architecture here

Big Ben & Parliament

Big Ben & Parliament

Must See:

  • Buckingham Palace
  • Big Ben & Parliament

  • Tower of London
  • London Eye (but don’t bother riding it)
  • St Paul’s Cathedral
  • Westminster Abbey

IMG_20160103_121304

In total, our 4 days were pretty jam packed, but I hope this helps anyone who has a short stay in London to weed out what the MUST-DO’s are!

Hope you all had a wonderful New Year!

Love always,

Ash

Xx

January 9, 2016

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Goodbye 2015! 2016- Let’s Do This!

I am currently writing this on my way to London, England on the last day of 2015, but you guys won’t read this until next year, so Happy New Year!

I hope you all had a happy and safe celebration.  Tonight my husband and I are going to see the notorious London fireworks, and will be enjoying the London New Year’s Day Parade tomorrow.  But more on our trip to London in the next post.

This is dedicated to 2015 and all of the amazing and not so amazing things that happened for me.

Let’s start with the bad:

2015 started on a really rough note. A family member of ours had a serious health issue that really set both my husband (Jeremy) and I back quite a bit.  Thankfully we got through it (which is sometimes hard when you’re living in a foreign country without family) and Jeremy and I are stronger than ever for it.  It’s funny how sometimes tragedy brings a couple closer.  You really have to rely on your partner and since I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason, that must have been why our year started out in such a terrible way.

Rambo

So after I thought things couldn’t get much worse for us in January, the saddest thing I could think of happened.  My best friend and fur-baby Rambo passed away of pancreatitis.  I was in Vasteras, Sweden (where Jeremy plays hockey) when Rambo got sick.  The next week was a blur in visits to Vets, highs and lows depending upon what they told me, and unbelievable anxiety. I don’t think words can really describe the feeling.  To some people this sounds ridiculous because a dog is a dog.  But to me, he was my baby.  He had travelled the world with me, helped me get through break ups, was right beside me for my wedding, the purchase of my first house, and literally every major milestone I had in the last 8 years. He was my furry little best friend.  Sadly it finally became evident that he could not get better.  I skyped home to my mom (I’m surprised she could even understand me through my sobs) but she remained my voice of reason – as always, and ultimately got me through the decision that I made.  I had to put him down.  I couldn’t bear to see him suffer anymore.  The next month was such total sorrow.  Thankfully Jeremy is the sweetest, and most caring man in the world, because without him, I really can’t imagine how I would have dealt with the situation.

Rambo

I now have Rambo’s ashes beside my bed, with the last picture of him and Santa just a month before he got sick.  I’m finally able to start looking at pictures of him again without immediately crying, and in April we welcomed a new little furball to our family.  Oakley Margaret Anne Leggat Williams (Yes my dogs always have my middle names).  Oakley is a yorkie like Rambo was, and he is incredibly cuddly, sweet, bossy, and hilarious.  I will never forget Rambo… Ever. But I am lucky to be the mom of Oakley.

Oakley

Oakley

Now onto happier news:

Work

2015 was a great year for work.  I was lucky to be on some great shows like: ‘The Next Step’, ‘Good Witch’, ‘Charming Christmas’, ‘Day Players’, ‘People Hold On’, & ‘We are Disorderly’ (which was my first ‘love making’ scene.. Ahhhh!)

I feel so lucky to be able to continue to work and be busy, while spending a lot of time with my husband in Sweden.  The balance isn’t always easy.  We are sometimes apart for 2 months or more, but thankfully so far we have been able to make it work in a way that fulfills both of our careers, and our personal life.

WorkFilms PosterWorkWork

Babies

I’m about to be an aunty again x2! Both my brother Rob & his wife Kristy, and my brother Todd & his wife, Ashleigh are pregnant.  Being an aunt is my favourite role, because you get to come and play and have the best time with the kids, and then when they start crying you can just give them back.  Kinda perfect right?

Weddings

I was a bridesmaid for my brother Bram & his wife Lori’s wedding.  It was one of the most beautiful weddings I’ve seen, and fun doesn’t even really begin to describe the night.  At one point, I was playing the recorder in the middle of the dance floor to Wiggle Wiggle, so that gives you an idea of the shenanigans that followed.  In 2016 I am going to be standing next to my brother Brett and his fiancé Sam as they tie the knot! So excited :)

Bram's Wedding Bram's Wedding

Brett

 Travel

My life is pretty cool.  I get to call both Canada & Sweden home.  This year I travelled to Pardubice, Czech Republic to watch my brother Brett play for Team Canada in the World’s Inline Tournament, Chicago for my sis in law’s bachelorette party, London for New year’s, Saskatchewan to visit Jeremy’s family, Stockholm with my parents.

Travel Travel TravelTravel - London

Visitors

We have been lucky enough to have lots of our friends and family visit this year.  My parents have come twice, Jeremy’s parents & sister visited (his mom came twice), my girlfriend Jess from home, my girlfriend Stephanie came to see us from London, our friends Justin & Christina Pogge, & my brother Todd & his wife Ashleigh.

ParentsParents

Joan & I.

Steph and I

2016

Everyone always asks me what my resolutions are.  They are usually the same – Eat better, workout more, & cut out diet coke.  I’ve tried this for the last 10 years, and my record is like 3 days, but I have high hopes for 2016.  This is the year…. I think… maybe…

In all, 2015 started really low, but ended on a major high.  I am the happiest I’ve ever been right now as I sit on a plane heading to a country I love, with the man I love, after just eating a doughnut that I loved… What? Resolutions don’t start until tomorrow…

This year I realized that I needed to invest my time and energy into people who deserved it.  People who invested their time and energy into me as well, and that friendships cannot be one sided.  I realized that I am beyond lucky to have the best/craziest/funniest family in the world.  I’m beyond blessed to have a mom who is my absolute best friend ever, and a husband who is a pretty close 2nd to her ;)… haha sorry Jer.

I’m wishing you all a wonderful New Year, and no matter what happened in 2015, you have a brand new beginning.  If things didn’t go as planned, wipe the slate clean and try again.  I’ll be here rooting you on!

Thank you guys for the incredible support you always give me!  I’m beyond lucky for all of YOU!  I hope you know how much I appreciate every single one of you!

Love always

Ash

Xo