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Archive for the ‘day out’ Category

Last week the kids and I headed up to London, we were lucky enough to be offered a family ticket to see the lastest Family show in the West End.

The Go! Go! G0! show

Go!Go!Go!

It  was the first time we had headed into London since we moved. So I anticipated a slightly longer journey on the train. As it happened a train pulled into the Station as I got my ticket and within 32 minutes I was at Charing cross. The kids love the train especially the ride in.

We got to Leicester Square an hour earlier than I had planned so we wandered around. I ended up buying water for myself and the kids, who had rapidly gone through their OJ’s and now Jerry was hungry and I was feeling a little lightheaded so we went and bought some Macdonalds, having never actually bought Macdonalds I stood there scanned the menu and saw nothing for kids so had to ask what was on offer.  I’m more of a Burger King person.

We went and sat in the Gardens and looked at the steady stream of people who had started to queue up for the premier of Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz’s new move of which I should know the name lol.

I headed to the theatre which is just off the actual square. And collected my tickets, they said they would open the doors half an hour before the show started. OK I still had 30 mins to occupy myself we went for ANOTHER walk, but this time Jerry had, HAD enough and lay down in a huge puddle and had a MASSIVE tantrum. Me being me let him take it out on the pavement and then said “you done” I even heard someone say “do you think that’s her child” yeah lady because I am real child snatcher at 33 weeks pregnant huh. GRRR

ANYWAY then it was a mad dash to GAP to buy him some dry clothes. Back to the theatre and this is where it got a little crappy. Like I said I am 33 weeks pregnant. I had both kids with me and the P&T vibe to get into the theatre it’s two flights of stairs down to the theatre.

The kids walked down while I bumped down the stroller. Two staff stood at the bottom and neither of them actually offered to help. So be aware if you are going and going alone take lightest stroller you have. On the way out however they helped me lifted it up the stairs.

We found our seats and sat down, we were very close to the speakers which were on really loudly and the kids were waving their glowsticks £3 which I had bought and looking at their programs also £3.

Then we got told there was a 5 minute delay which turned into 20 minutes by this point. I was a little more than tetchy mainly due to getting in to early and Jerry having epic tantrum, then the “I’m hungry, I’m thirsty” chitter chatter started, this meant a trip to the bar paying a hefty £1.50 for the smallest pringles and the same for water, of course we were all very thirsty and it was warm in there, so take plenty of water and food it you go. I spent at least £15 on just buying us water the entire time and snacks.

The show began and within 10 minutes Eliza was in tears and asking to go home and Jerry was entranced. Eliza isn’t the best with things like this, you can read about our Disney experience earlier this year on my blog.

The cast interact with the children really well and the songs are really, really catchy and fab I really liked them. I was a little surprised when there was an intermission, I had been told the show was 45 minutes long. I really was quite over it , I had Jerry on my knee and Eliza clinging to me for dear life for the first half.

As the curtains closed both kids said one after another “go home now?” I said “well I think not, there is more to watch”. Eliza really looked unhappy and said she felt scared. Jerry was just exceedingly tired.

We sat and ate M&M’s and did more stickers in the programs.

The 2nd half started and I had made a point to both of them that they had to sit in their seats as I am way to fat to cope with both of them hanging off me!

Made all the difference Suddendly I was at the theatre with two different children, Eliza really, really got into it and was dancing and singing despite not knowing any of the words lol and waving her glowstick around frantically and Jerry was of course eating but bouncing up and down wildly in his seat.

It was great, the songs were really good again about sharing and having fun together, and of course the fluffalope was heavily featured.

The second half felt shorter, not sure if it was, or if it was the fact I was able to sit on my own and relax a little.

After it ended the cast come out to the Foyer and meet all the children, this was bizarrely crowded and people were pushing like crazy to get to the Cast who were lovely and polite and tired! I had to explain to Eliza about getting autographs she didn’t and really still doesn’t get what that process was all about, but she had her favourite character and wanted her name written on her book, which sadly she didn’t get but she got most of them.

I can now say three days after the show and neither of them have shut up about the show, Eliza is desperate to go and see it again, both have asked if we can get a fluffalope toy, what about a movie or a CD are there dolls?

They pretend they are in the show and act out little scenes together, it has been a huge hit and I hope they bring out a CD and a DVD of the show because it was great.

I do however think that 2 is the minimum age to take a child to something like this.  There were a few people with younger children and it looked a little tough on them walking around and trying to keep them quiet.

Over all we really enjoyed it. I didn’t plan as well as I should of in regards to timing and drink supplies but the show was fab and I hope if you go you enjoy it as much as we all did.

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Last week We toddled off into London for the Launch of Annabel Karmels latest book Top 100 pasta Dishes.

We have met Annabel before so it was great to go back and meet her again, and this time actually see her doing a cooking demonstration and then we got to try and make it for ourselves.

Eliza was really excited to cook with Annabel again and Jerry was really happy there was food on offer and started eating pretty much from the moment we arrived until we left!

Eliza Seeing Annabel coming over!

The chicken Salad we made was so nice, I was incredibly selfish and waited until the kids were playing when we got home and ate the entire lot lol. I didn’t pick up the recipe so I am waiting to get that and then I will share with you because it’s so yummy!

Making fresh pasta

After we had made our pasta salad we made some fresh pasta, thankfully the pasta had already been pre cut into rectangles so all we had to do was fill it and cut them. Jerry was very taken with the knives and really impressed Karin over at cafebebe with his skills.

I even got a turn with the knife!

I also of course got to mingle with some other mummy bloggers,like Cherished By me and Mummytips who told me that this dish is very good for hangovers.

I also met briefly viewfromnappymountain it was hard to talk to many of the others, Jerry wasn’t on his best behaviour, and was finding being confined hard, that child needs discipline.

I did get to have a quick chat with Young and Younger mummy blogger who for a mum of 8 month old twins looks bloody fantastic and gorgeous. Really shouldn’t be allowed to look that good with one baby of 8 months old!

I’ve said how much my boy likes to eat well, they  filmed him eating watch out for that lol

Does he ever stop eating?

Overall I had a really great time, I love cooking more ever, moving to suburbia gave me a little extra kick, I really enjoy learning new things and quick tasty things like the salad above, the kids and I are big salad peoples so perfect for weekday lunches for us. I really had a great time with Annabel again. Hopefully more demos will come up and I’ll get to go back!

Thanks to Annabel and all involved we had a fab day!

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Today I had no plans, but the sun came out and I still not having any friends in this area really didn’t feel like having another day at home, listening to the sound of my own voice and feeling like time is passing me by. So I looked for something to do. 30 minutes later not only did I have a picnic in the car for us, I had the kids dressed and sitting patiently as I set the GPS up. OH yes when I decide on something I work fast!

I picked Groombridge Place and Gardens for us to visit. I like gardens, the children like gardens. And it has a Zeedonk which sadly we didn’t get to see. But we did see a lot, I decided to take a boat ride, which Jerry HATED, HATED with a passion 10 minutes of him digging his fingers in to me and screaming OFF BOAT, NO LIKE IT

Eliza on the Boat

You arrive at the Robson Crusoe playground. There are some height restrictions on the equipment but I went around with the kids,we were the only people there so it was quiet! It was great for confidence building for Eliza who’s very scared of bridges with gaps. trying to not agree with her and say lets go back down we went across bridges and up and down the stairs.

It's the MAP, It's the map, come on sing it with me

Lots of things to look at and play with!

A place to sleep and have lunch!

I've never found the wicker look/feel appealing either

How you know your kids don't know you are scared of spiders

Lots of detail

what happens if you get bored watching the kids play

So after we played here we walked along the stream and I pretended that this was my property I was the ultra mega cool person to do this on my land. Because I like to live in my own dreams sometimes.

Then we came across this

A bone?

Eliza and Jerry were thrilled, never has a piece of wood had so much love, no mummy no one carved it, silly mummy, it’s a dinosaur bone. Yes which you can now use to rest upon. But that suddenly didn’t seem so appealing.

So we checked out the Mystic Pool, which really looks like a mosquito swamp if I am honest, being highly allergic to mozzies I scanned the area but it appeared safe and rather not Mystic.

Mystic eh

Then we walked on some more, painfully stopping to look at some mud on the ground which was a little wet, first we had Eliza worried about her shoes then Jerry who got his hands dirty, Seriously guys we live in the countryside now, stop the namby pamby city kid crap.

maze who knows I forget the name 😀

Reaching my favourite part of what we managed to see. Reminded me of Frodo’s house except VERY small

Who lives in a house like this..?

Seriously it’s lots of fun and lots to see, and do. I will go back because I really want to see the Zeedonk and the rest of the Enchanted forest. I also want to see the gardens better.

Trivia for you. Pride and Prejudice was filmed here using the house for the Bennets. Day of the triffids was filmed here, and it was the inspiration for Sherlock Holmes writer Sir  Arthur Conan Doyles book “The valley of Fear”

If you can go, go, it’s beautiful

Gates to the Private house

Moated manor

We loved it!

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Last week I took the kids to the Horniman Museum We left before Jerry’s nap thinking he would sleep in the car. He didn’t.

There is no parking at the Museum so you have to find parking on the close by streets. Which are Hilly, hilly, hilly.So I parked the car walked half way down the hill and realised I had left my mobile phone on the car seat, so had to walk up the hill with two kids 1 who cried because he thought we were getting back into the car and Eliza who complained as “hills are hard work”.

We got there before opening time and stood around outside, the benefit of going during the week means not many people are actually there but lots of schools are.

We went to see the Myths and Monsters exhibt. I knew there was a unicorn in there, what I didn’t realise was there was this

Which terrified Eliza, cyclops was also mechanical, so not only was he moving he was making these grunting sounds and I am eating a huge leg sounds, the picture is blurry as I hid them behind a screen and raced around to take this picture, while they shouted “mummy we are scared”

Still Eliza’s world was quickly made with this

She wrote out a note for the wishing tree as did Jerry.

The displays were awesome, if the kids were not so scared I would of liked to spend more time looking at them.

We headed off to look at some dead animals instead

Hmmm Jerry liked this fox, rubbed it’s tail all over his neck, Eliza stroked it and talked to it for ages, mostly asking “are you dead fox, were you alive before? You’re dead now” All heart my girl.

We then walked around the usual displays of stuffed monkeys, birds, and then they have a whole cabinet filled with animal innards in formaldehyde, now I was starting to question if I am still pregnant I feel fine and have no bump. I felt reallllly sick when I saw them, annoyingly the kids were very interested and I had to explain to Eliza about each ones innards rabbits, cats, mouse, dog, OMG you name it. Really glad they don’t have a real fetus like the Natural History in London what always irks me, same as the “real spinal cord and brain” fascinating but stomach churning. And I have an extremely strong stomach normally.

Then to settle our (my) stomach we went to the Aquarium and it’s quite small and basic. Quite a lot of “British shoreline” creatures so you know very dull lol big crabs though which Jerry loved. Kept asking to “eat it” lucky the glass was thick and high, security were looking a little worried though.

And then we headed back to the Unicorn a further 3 times and Eliza basically spent 30 minutes just staring at it, and talking to it and Jerry just sat in the stroller eating as that is what he likes to do when he’s not kicking a ball.

Well worth a visit. It’s free, except small exhibts like the myths and monsters which was a snip at a fiver for me and £2.50 for Eliza.

We’re heading back in a few weeks hopefully I’ll get to spend some time with Cyclops.

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Hever Castle

My husband is always desperate to go do things on the weekend, I am not. I am not sure why because once in the car and at the destination I have a fantabulous time and then talk his ears off for the rest of the night about what a great day we had, and he always says “yes once we got you out of the house”

I do love it once I’m on my way that is.

Hubby was desperate to do something out-doorsy which is pretty hard right now as there seems to be a bit of rain in the UK it’s really bad. But there was a 3 hour window in which it was meant to NOT rain, we showered as fast as possible and set of to Hever.

After much debate about my husband saying “I dunno if I want to go there” honestly we spend 40 minutes always having a go at each other. Him about me not wanting to leave the house and me telling him every suggestion I make he doesn’t like” anyone else do this crap?

We got there and then it started raining, well what a surprise the weather board got it wrong. Eliza is a total princess and despite wearing 14 layers of clothing and a fleece and a wind and waterproof coat she was cold. I kept pointing out the castle in a very excited manner, and maybe there was a princess in there.

We raced down to the bridge and stopped for a quick jump in some puddles and then crossed the moat’s bridge where Eliza decided she would fall through one of the cracks and die. Daddy came to her rescue. he did point out to her that the cracks were not that big she could fall down between them.

Standing in the Entrance was a guide, under her breath I heard her say “children” to another guide, you could see the dread in her face. The desperation of yet more toddlers touching a tapestry or knocking a 1795 vase on to the floor started to flood my mind. You watch Eliza, I’ll take Jerry. I told my husband which is normally pointless as he forgets he’s meant to be watching one or other of them and I end up watching both of them, why is that? Hello, hello anyone out there or am I talking to myself…

Eliza is pretty good in places like this, she’s very interested in Artwork she wants to know who every single person is and what the painting is about, I try to get her to tell me what she thinks the paintings are about, and we look at them and talk about what we can see. Jerry has no time for this sadly might have something to do with the fact he is 17 months old.

She then says very loudly “IS THIS THE HOUSE OF THE QUEEN WHO HAD HER HEAD CUT OFF?” To say I was surprised was a understatement. back in July/August we had gone to Hever with friends, we didn’t go in the castle but the kids had a great time in the Gardens they also have a fantastic Adventure playground and water maze. I had told Eliza back then about Anne Boleyn I was so surprised she remember that and so proud, she has an amazing memory when she wants to, funny she can’t remember me saying 7347364 times a day to stop snatching and pushing her brother.

You’re not allowed to take photo’s in the house sadly so obviously I didn’t. Thankfully after a cup of tea the rain stopped and we headed back into the gardens I was relectunt to walk around as the kids had both been so sick last week, but they seemed fine.

Steps in the Italian Garden

The colours right now are lovely, was nice to let my eye photograph some thing else for a change.

Lots & lots of puddles!

It was flooded in parts and the kids had enormous fun, they got so wet! Luckily I had spare clothes for them both!

I just love this image.

Someone likes Swans

What the hell is going on here? She’s all nekkid and making out with a swan, it’s just wrong.

It really started to get very cold and the kids by this point were very wet, and I was very worried they were going to get ill again so we changed their clothes, banged the heating up, by the point I had driven a mile they were both fast asleep. A good day me thinks! We bought a Annual membership which means we now have access to the Castle and Gardens for a year. I can’t wait!

Definitely worth a day out even just to the gardens!

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Deer1

I had heard about Knole Park somewhere along the way, so I decided to take the kids there one day. Our most free day is a Thursday so I took the opportunity of a break in the weather to zip out there. Zip being the right word it’s only 30 mins away at 80 miles an hour…..brum brum It’s actually just in the town of Sevenoaks which is so nice, we should of moved there way nicer than where we are!

SO as you arrive in the park you are greeted by lots of rolling hills and Deer OH so many Deer, it was fabulous I put the kids windows down and they could see them on both sides much excitement and squealing from the back!

It was F F F Freeeeezing when we went so we just plopped around the grounds a little bit and then went and had a cup of tea in the Cafe, what’s great about that is they have a little table with toys, a basket of childrens books and you can buy them a pack lunch for £2.95 excellento. I was on my own so I sat the kids down and ordered it was nice and quiet and safe I managed to get a day out and relax in a cafe alone while the kids ate lunch and played VERY NICE!

deer2

This is a crap picture but if you look carefully there is a lot of deer OK!

Upon our visit I expressed my perhaps over the top excitement to my husband and we went back on the weekend. This time we had the bright idea of going when it was the boys nap time and Eliza’s quiet time I really didn’t want to go, but I did because I knew if we didn’t go out the day would be wasted ( I had been at the dentist in the morning) huge mistake the kids complained, cried, asked to be carried, climbed on tree trunks, had a fabulous time, but I am sure it would of been more pleasant at a different time of day!

Jerry nov209

This week Knole Park, next week Junior Magazine!

Still I bagged some rather handsome shots of Jerry and some of my girl playing and being cheeky!

Eliza2nov09

Wintery fun

I think if I don’t marry our new camera, I will marry the 50-200mm lens I love that baby

Jerrynov09

Hey!

It was a nice family day over all and I think it will be a great place to visit when the weather is warmer. Some of the Stags are heading in to Rut so racing about quite quickly around the females, it’s not dangerous and you can’t get near them they run away before you’re within 100 yards.

eliza knole nov09

go you will love it, I did!

It really is a fun place, we might venture into the house when it’s open, Eliza wants to find the princess.

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On Sunday the 6th of September I ran/walked/ran broke blood vessels in my face, lost a toenail, in the London Adidas woman’s 5km Challenge. I first heard about it from my Friend Clare with 5 weeks to go I signed up, plenty of time to train and be fit enough to finish. I actually had no worries about finishing it 5KM is hardly far and I would easily walk up to 10KM some days during the week so I wasn’t worried about the distance. I decided that even with training it would take me 1 hour to complete as I am so unfit. I am carrying about 10+ kilos of extra weight. I barely exercise. shuddup 🙂

But In my head I love, love running. I was so passionate about it during my high school years, it took me away, litterly it took me away from my home life which was mostly horrible. It was an escape in many ways. I would run on the moors with my dogs each time challenging myself to go further, to go quicker. I started to compete in local cross country comps and did well. I gained the title of the fastest girl at my school in long distance. I was on a high. I was also swimming competively as well and wining a lot of competitions with that. I was really into both sports. Then when I was about 18 I stopped I just stopped. I then only ran for fun and fitness and then as I got into my mid twenties I never ran often to constitue saying “I’m a runner”

So of course when Sunday came around I set off with Jeremiah in the stroller the micralite, my P&T vibe has a snapped chassis (it’s being investigated) I was in the 2nd to last lot of batches of people to run, they sounded the horn and we were off. It was really hard at first to get around all the people just walking I zipped in and out weaving my way through them until the first KM was over and then I walked fast for 2 KM every now and again breaking into a jog. Every now and again  breakthrough breastcancer people would see someone in their T-shirt like me and the cheering would start it really encouraged me to run faster, to keep going.

At the 4km mark I don’t know why, but I just pegged it. I decided I wanted a good time, despite not even knowing how long I had already been going! I crossed that line iin 42 minutes and 14 seconds. And I didn’t do a single day’s training, I didn’t run at all beforehand. I did nothing.

I rang my Husband as soon as I was able to breath again and he said “FINALLY” He was off shopping in the west end with our daughter, he asked what time I did it in and I told him, he was so so proud, he said “that’s really impressive, considering you did no training and you were pushing a stroller” I thanked him and hung up. I then walked 2 miles to meet him, I had already walked 2 miles to get to the race, I was on a high and starting to feel a little tired, but I kept on going! I really don’t think I did that well. BUT my husband does and that made me cry literally with joy. Because it was the only time in my life where I have run a race and someone who meant something to me said ” you were really impressive” it’s not the same as a teacher or a coach saying it. It meant SO much to me. And he kept saying it and saying it and I kept thinking “wow, I impressed him wow”

I impressed him so much, he thinks I can do better, better without pushing a stroller, better with training, better and further.

He is right, I can do better. I have extremely low self confidence if I had ankles not cankles it would be around that sort of level lol but I’ve taken his words on board and well. watch this space!

I want to thank EVERYONE who sponsored me we raised £135 I aimed for £100 so that’s wonderful. I am sure anyone with breast-cancer is appreciative of any money that goes towards finding better treatment and eventually a cure.

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