A cabin in the woods (and some new chairs)

As London finally got the summer we have all been dreaming about, I promptly boarded a flight bound for the USA, Washington DC, where the weather is so hot and steamy you skulk from one air conditioned building to the next. My very dear friends, Harry and Chris, moved out there in April and it was snowing the day they arrived. Snowing I tell you, roll on four months and it's topping 40 degrees on a weekly basis, the mind boggles how anything can adapt in such extremes

Anyhow, they have a lovely big house with a big verandah over looking their back yard and tropical plants wilting growing in the steamy weather. This front deck belonged to one of their neighbours and had beautiful hibiscus' and ferns, what a horticultural inspiration.

But really, enough about hot weather and flora. The star attraction of the holiday, in fact the whole reason for the trip, was the little lady having a nap above, Miss Ella Ferguson - what a sweetie pie. At ten week's old she can smile, hold her head up on her own, grab your finger and do a lot of pooping. In fact her whole life revolved around a very simple routine of eat, sleep, poop, repeat. 

She had me wrapped round her little finger from the moment I met her and Harry and I had a very happy time pottering round Washington with Ella. 

We went to the Lincoln Memorial, which was very impressive, apart from the fact that all the canada geese pooed along the edge of the reflecting pool. Having to dodge goose poo is very distracting when marvelling at the enormity of what Abe Lincoln achieved.

We went to the Smithsonian and National Portrait Galleries and gawped at master pieces and learnt a lot about American history.

And we went to a big, old house with the most amazing gardens, called Dumbarton Oaks. It's a bit like Kew Gardens, except there was apparently only one other person visiting when I was there. It had amazing flowers and trees as well chipmunks and the biggest frogs I have ever seen.

And we went out for dinner in some of the groovy eateries around 11th Street, where they live. The sleeping babe came too and snoozed away in her pram. They made the whole parenthood thing look very easy.

And then the air con in the house packed up and everyone got a little hot and bothered and so we decided to decamp, up state to Pennsylvania to a little cabin in the woods buy Lake Pocono. We found it last minute on Craigs List (US version of Gumtree) and we had no idea what it was going to be like. 

What a place! The house looked down through woods to the lake, where we had our own canoe and use of jetty to jump in the water off. And the whole place was so quiet it was almost disconcerting. It was also much, much cooler than Washington which was a big relief.

And so began our holiday within a holiday. We spent our time eating (lots of eating), paddling around in the lake and cooing over Ella.

Ella loved her first holiday and very much enjoyed all the attention.

One thing she was not so sure about was her first swim! The idea was mooted based on the fact that she clearly adores bath time; turns out a big lake is not so appealing.

Look at that little face (and I don't mean Chris's!)

It was a really wonderful holiday and now I'm home I miss them all very much, especially little Ella. Who knew a baby could have such a lot of character having been in the world only ten weeks!!

And lastly (I should have probably put this at the beginning)two new chairs. The lovely little 1940's cocktail above. Upholstered in gorgeous floral linen from the amazing Cloth Shop on Portobello and available for £390.

And this white and lime ombre 1950's Communist chair, upholstered in Designers Guild linen and available for £190.