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Articles tagged with: Weekends Away

A Sisterly Trip To Brighton...

on Thursday, 25 September 2014.

As I am writing this, we were supposed to be in Portugal for a last bit of sunshine before we officially call it Autumn and start putting the heating on.  However due to a number of different reasons we sadly had to postpone our break away.  With a house still turned upside down from our bathroom renovation, my little sister and I decided at the last minute to go away for a couple of nights in Brighton with my girls.

If I could live anywhere else in the UK, I think it would be Brighton.  I don't know what it is, most probably the combination of the seaside, the culture and the amazing shops, I just love it.  Anna my sister, hadn't been before, so we waved goodbye to Mr E and set off on our journey.  We booked a last minute room at the Queens Hotel over looking the sea front, and were excited to see when we arrived that we had an amazing view of the pier and the beach.  Although the decor was traditionally 'British seaside (i.e a little tired), the room was large, comfy and in the most perfect location.

We had a fantastic time.  We ate far too much, relishing in lots of sweet treats, hotel breakfasts and lunch and dinner out.  We spent far too much money, but it was worth it, as the four of us had lots of fun and relished the rare opportunity of undivided sister time.  Anna is ten years younger than me, whether it's the fact that she is mature, (or I am immature!) or the fact that we have the exact same sense of humour- but we get on great.  

We did the traditional seaside thing of going on the pier, riding the Brighton wheel, walking and skimming stones on the beach and wandering round the gorgeous Lanes area. (shoppers paradise!)  We made lots of memories and were all sad to come home, although we missed Mr E!  We will definitely go away together again soon, I am surprised we haven't done it sooner.

Here is rather a lot of photos and a little video of our sister time in Brighton...

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When we got there on the Sunday evening we went down to the beach- the light was beautiful and the girls spent a good half an hour just playing with the stones.  As you do.

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Beautiful light- it was lovely watching the sun go down on the beach.

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Slightly messy beach hair.  

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Still playing with stones.

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Just one more, I can't get enough of this light clearly.

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Yay for the Brighton deckchairs.

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Loving the girly sleepover! We went out to dinner late the first night and then I decided they could stay up later still so I could watch X Factor- Big mistake as they were so grumpy the following morning and we had to go back to the hotel halfway through the day so they could nap!

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The Lanes area of Brighton is a pedestrian only zone and these two loved running around there together causing mischief. 

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So cute.

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Stopping for a little snack- shopping is hard work ya know.

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We stopped off at a little cake shop called Cloud 9, which was gorgeous.  Mads had the most amazing  rainbow cake, while the rest of us had cupcakes which were equally delicious.

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My beautiful girly walking along the pier with her balloon.  

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Such a cutie and growing up so quickly.

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My sister took this one of myself and Mads and I just love it so much.  I normally hate photos of myself but this one makes me so proud I have such a gorgeous little lady.

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You can't go to the seaside without visting some beach huts.

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Lovely beach huts.

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Cheeky smiles while chilling on the pier deckchairs.

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We did the typical tourist thing and went on the Brighton wheel- the girls loved it.

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Posing on the pier.

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A last final walk on the beach and some donuts to share!

 

And here is a little video of our time in Brighton...

 

 

Our Weekend Camping Adventure- Part Two.

on Tuesday, 19 August 2014.

A couple of weekends ago we had our first camping experience as a family when (I say camping but we cheated and went for a more 'luxury' option!) to Pembrokeshire in South West Wales.  I posted some photos last week, but I took so many as usual that I decided to split my posts in to two parts.  

 

Here is a little more of what we got up too...

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I *may* have prettied up our tent with these super cute lanterns from The Little Things.  

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We decided to go to South Wales because Mr E used to holiday in Wales a lot as a child, and we heard the beaches were beautiful.  We googled 'Britain's best beach' and it came up with Barafundle Bay, and then when Lucy and her little family then posted about their adventure there, our minds were made up.  It didn't disappoint, it was absolutely beautiful and because we went late in the afternoon, it was practically deserted.  For those thinking of going there, you have to walk over the cliff to get there, it's probably a good 3/4 of a mile walk up some steps and hills, but once you are there it's 100% worth it.

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So worth the climb- how beautiful.

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'You better give me that spade soon Daddy.'

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This girl is an actual liability when it comes to sand- she gets it EVERYWHERE.  Whereas Mads was never fussed when she was a baby, LL just wants to eat it and put it places she isn't supposed too!

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No trip to the seaside would be complete without some competitive sandcastle building.  Obviously.

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We sat and had dinner on the practically deserted beach.  Which was lovely bar the sandy sandwiches, which were a little crunchy.

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She is still at that stage where she is 'waddling' - she's getting faster on her feet every day but still holds out her hands to steady herself most of the time which is pretty cute.

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Sisterly sandcastle building.

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The next few photos are basically all of LL prompting Mr E to say 'You are aware that we have more than one child?!  It's just the light was so nice and she was sitting still!

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Ahhh pretty light and a baby in romper shorts.  Perfect.

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I love this photo of Mr E and LL.  He really is the best father I could ask for for my little ladies.

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'I have sand up my nose.'

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'If I am quick he won't catch me and I can put some more up there.'

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'Damn he caught me- let's have a sulk.'

 

All in all it was a fantastic weekend, and I am glad we had such a memorable first camping experience.  I am still definitely not sold on the idea of full camping just yet, but glamping suits us just fine!

Our Weekend Camping Adventure with the Subaru XV...

on Thursday, 07 August 2014.

As a family there is nothing more we love than having an adventure, especially when the sun is shining.  I have this innate feeling distilled in me in the Summer, one where I rarely just like to stay at home.  Even if we just pop out to the park, I have to get out the house on a daily basis.  I love our little home but we love to seek out adventures and make memories as much as we can.

This past weekend we went on a very special adventure as a family- our first time camping.  In actual fact it was my first time camping ever, unless you count a rather soggy Duke of Edinburgh experience at school where we almost set our tent alight smoking contraband cigarettes, but that's a different matter entirely.  We were really excited to have the chance to borrow a Subaru XV for the weekend which was just fantastic, we absolutely loved the car and it was definitely made for families like ours.

I was a little nervous about camping with two tiny people, but actually it was an amazing experience for us all and we had so much fun that I actually have enough photos to fit in to two posts.   We decided to go to Pembrokeshire in South Wales as Mr E used to holiday in Wales a lot as a child.  After learning all about the Subaru XV on Friday afternoon at a really fun off roading event, we headed off on the long five hour journey to reach our destination.

We may have *slightly* cheated at camping and gone for a slightly more luxurious glamping option.  After a lot of research online I found the quite frankly amazing Not Just Any Tent company.  They take the hassle out of camping by arriving at your chosen campsite before you and pitching one of their beautiful bell tents for you.  We were blown away when we arrived- the tent was gorgeous- with fairy lights, lots of bunting, actual duvets and blow up beds, and everything you could need for your camping adventure.  Although slightly more than usual camping, at £245 for two nights, it was most definitely worth the money and we couldn't recommend it any higher if you are wanting to camp with little ones- there was even room for us to take LL's travel cot.

I spent ages looking for a nice campsite and ended up being so pleased with the one we chose.  We chose Dewslake Camping, a small site situated on a farm only a few miles from Barafundle Bay and Tenby.  Having not camped before, I was really impressed with the facilities- I had visions of missing my creature comforts but the toilets were clean, the showers were hot and it had a little kitchen area.  Most importantly it was relaxed and the atmosphere was lovely. 

We had a action packed weekend full of adventure and the girl's loved spending time as a family in a tent, it was such a unique experience for them and for us.  We were worried as to how they would sleep but bar going to bed a little later than usual as obviously it was light, they actually slept really well and didn't wake up until later than they normally do at home!

Here is the first part of our adventure in photos...

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All packed up ready to go in our swanky Subaru XV for the weekend- the perfect family car.  It had leather seats, a built in sat nav, and most importantly according to Mr E it drove really well as well.  We were so impressed with it and loved it more than our current car which is a similar style Qashqui. Plus see those bikes on the back there?  They are our new family bikes- after years of wanting them we finally bought some with a trailer on the back for our little ladies.

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Our home for the weekend- the most beautiful bell tent.

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The inside of our tent- it was so lovely and had everything you needed for a weekend away.

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We had a lovely big spot in the corner of the campsite.

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We went for a stroll round the quaint little town of Tenby which was just lovely.  Just don't try and get in anywhere for dinner on a Saturday night in peak season!

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The sun going down on our beautiful tent.

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We went to the local Heatherton Theme Park which was fun for a morning- Mr E tried his hand at water zorbing and was worse than all the children who were doing it.

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Mads loved the little car track and was so excited to get a license at the end- she has been carrying it around ever since.

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Me and my big girly- I hope she never grows out of sucking her fingers when she's tired or needs comforting.

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Something obviously tickled LL.

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Breakfast outside our tent. 

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On one of the days we went to West Midlands Safari Park, this was fantastic and would definitely recommend it with little ones as there is a small theme park there as well.  Here they are sussing out where to go next.

 

Here is a video from our little adventure.  More photos to come in my next post...

*Disclaimer*- Please don't watch this video if embarrassing Mum dancing offends you.

 

 

NB- We were kindly loaned a rather fabulous Subaru XV for our weekend adventure and given a contribution towards costs for our weekend.  We paid for all other aspects of the adventure, including the tent and campsite. 

 

 

 

A Weekend At Wedfest.

on Tuesday, 29 July 2014.

A few weeks ago I was bridesmaid for one of my closest friends.  While I had a lovely time and her big day was absolutely beautiful, lets just say that a formal setting, hours of speeches and solo parenting for Mr E while I was doing bridesmaid duties, did not make for the happiest of small children by the end of the weekend.  The girl's behaved (reasonably) well considering how long and not terribly exciting the day was for them, but by the end of it they were tired, we were tired and we vowed that next wedding they would be left in the capable hands of Grandpa while we went and relaxed.

Fast forward to this past weekend and our promise to ourselves seemed to be forgotten as we all packed in the car and headed off up North for our friend's wedding party.  They got married in Colorado and were having 'Wedfest'- a festival after party in a field.  I must admit to feeling slightly apprehensive after the last wedding being such hard work.  I need not have worried, 'Wedfest' was a perfect afternoon.

The sun was shining, it was informal but such a perfect idea- with hay bales to sit on, people camping, dj's playing old Ibiza tunes, and a band later on in the evening.  There was a delicious BBQ and an ice cream van, lots of bubbly and a bouncy castle for the girl's.  They were an absolute credit to us, being very well behaved and chatting to everyone.  

We all danced until late into the evening, and Mads and LL loved dancing with us.  It made me smile from ear to ear watching them dancing together, they didn't stop even for a minute.  All in all it was a great party, made even nicer by the fact it was so hot.

Here are a few photos from my DSLR and phone...

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Our 'Wedfest' attire.

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Hats and Hay bales.

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What every successful wedding needs.

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I love this photo of my cheeky girl.

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Ice cream messy faces.

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She was in her element having everyone chat to her.

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Their little retro style ice cream dresses are my favourite thing of theirs at the moment.

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Yummiest cake ever.

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Looking very grown up.

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The sun setting on a lovely day. 

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And lastly we went to Leeds (where I lived for 5 years) for a spot of lunch and shopping on Sunday, and of course another little trip down memory lane like we did last year.  I walked through these doors almost ten years ago for a pizza and decided to apply for a part time job.  Little did I know the man who handed me the application form would become my husband and we would have our two little ladies. 

 

All in all it was a great weekend. We are loving the sunshine so far- long may it last!

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