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What's this blog all about?

Hi, I'm Nicola - welcome to a blog about family travel around the world, without leaving the UK.
I love travel adventures, but to save cash and keep my family's carbon footprint lower, I dreamt up a unique stay-at-home travel experience. So far I've visited 110 countries... without leaving the UK. Join me exploring the next 86! Or have a look at the "countries" you can discover within the UK by scrolling the labels (below right). Here's to happy travel from our doorsteps. See www.nicolabaird.com for info about the seven books I've written, a link to my other blog on thrifty, creative childcare (homemadekids.wordpress.com) or to contact me.

Saturday, 14 July 2007

Ice house

Nicola, Pete, Lola and Nell want to travel the world with a difference. We hope to get a taste of many countries without adding to climate change (with needless emissions from aeroplanes) or having to waste hours of holiday time in airport terminals. We hope our adventures inspire you to take a Grand Tour of your neighbourhood. This post is from Nicola

Here's a picture of the old-fashioned way to keep your stuff cool - it's an ice house at Crathes Castle, http://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/crathes/crathescastle/index.html. To make one of these you need a bit of ground. Then earmark a patch out of the direct sun, dig a big hole (or use a cave if one is around) and then insulate with turf and grass. During the winter harvest any large chunks of ice from a convenient pond/ bucket etc and then store in this underground room. This is your ice house.

Admittedly it's not Smeg trendy, and it doesn't dispense ice cubes with quite the same clink-into-glass but it is tried-and-tested, and very cheap to run (ie, free). And it's an absolute beauty too with the soft grasses and wild flowers growing all over the roof.

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