Our Favourite Merlin Days Out If you follow our family on Instagram you will see we love our Merlin Annual Passes. Brought on a whim in their sale in 2016 I wasn’t sure how much we would use them but we have got our monies […]
Tag: childhood adventures
What does the Summer Holidays mean to our family? Lazy days, adventures, sunshine, rainy days and most important of all no routine. The holidays seem to have been way too short and flown by. Looking back on my 10,000s of pictures I thought I would share our highlights of our summer holidays.
Camp Bestival –
The weather in early July was pretty glorious, So we were very much looking forward to our first ever festival and first ever camping trip. Then the weather decided to take a turn for the worst with heavy rain and wind forecast. To say it was making me slightly dreading the weekend, would be pretty spot on. When we arrived it was sunny and my positivity returned. We stayed in Pitch Village so our tents were already up and ready to go. The Pitch Village also had nice and clean facilities, with lovely friendly staff too, we will definitely choose this option again.
By the next morning the rain was pretty heavy and endless, so we got kitted out in our wellies and waterproofs and headed to the main site. Yes, we got absolutely soaked for the majority of the weekend but we made some truly magical memories watching and dancing to Mark Ronson was a once in a lifetime thing. The final day was sunny and we enjoyed lounging around in the sun enjoying the variety of acts. The kids are desperate to go again next year and I’m coming around to the idea too.
Avebury Manor –
If you follow me on Instagram you will see we love a good National Trust day out. So we returned to Avebury Manor for a family day out, the kids absolutely love it there, great for just a walk or for the kids to dress up and get hands-on in the house.
Cracking GCSE Results –
I was slightly worried about the new grading system for the GCSE’s. Plus it was a completely new thing for me to experience as a mum. T and I both lost sleep in the run-up to results day. But I am not sure what we were worried about as the blooming superstar did absolutely incredibly. I am one proud mama and T is now the proud owner of 9 A-C. Meaning she is now off to college to do her preferred course. We did celebrate with a family lunch at Frankie and Benny’s
Victorious Festival –
I wanted to end the holiday with a surprise day out. I spotted that Olly Murs was at The Victorious Festival in Portsmouth so thought that would be the perfect treat. The eldest 3 girls and I went to The O2 to see Olly Murs in the spring. But F was pretty annoyed he didn’t get to come too. On the morning of the festival, once F and A knew where we were going and that Olly was going to be there, they were beside themselves with excitement.
The weather was very hot, so we spent most of the day chilling out in the Children’s Arena. A’s complete highlight of the day was seeing the real Mr Bloom on the stage, singing and dancing. I went with all 5 of the kids on my own, but they were really well behaved, phew! Olly wasn’t on until 9.30pm, but my kids love a late night, so weren’t phased. They all sang and danced the night away. Even if T and I needed to keep swapping the little ones so they could see. When we got back to the car F said it ‘Was the Best Day of His Life’, so a definite parenting win.
The weather was very hot, so we spent most of the day chilling out in the Children’s Arena. A’s complete highlight of the day was seeing the real Mr Bloom on the stage, singing and dancing. I went with all 5 of the kids on my own, but they were really well behaved, phew! Olly wasn’t on until 9.30pm, but my kids love a late night, so weren’t phased. They all sang and danced the night away, even if T and I needed to keep swapping the little ones so they could see. When we got back to the car F said it ‘Was the Best Day of His Life’, so a definite parenting win.
Beach Days –
We love to be beside the seaside and me and the 4 youngest kids headed to Weymouth Sealife Park for a very sunny day out. We spent a long time in the Park and then once we had finished we headed over to the beach to have a little paddle and chill.
Then later in August, I needed to head to Bournemouth to do a bit of work. So I and 4 of the kids tied it in with a visit to the beach. Firstly we visited Sandbanks, but it was a bit rainy so just stayed for a few hours. I hadn’t been for years and had totally forgotten what a beautiful beach it was. The kids built sand castles and did gymnastics on the sand. We then headed back to the main Bournemouth beach, wow was it busy, but we walked further up from the pier. It was quieter there and I treated the kids to an Ice Cream. We then headed for a paddle, but of course, F turned that into a full-on swim, that boy is water crazy.
Wow, when I thought because we hadn’t been on a ‘proper’ holiday we hadn’t done much. But now I can see that we did tons and made some awesome memories along the way.
10 tips for a stress-free day out at Legoland
We love family days out and now we have Merlin Annual Passes we are forever darting off along the motorway for an adventurous day. Recently we visited Legoland and I must say it was a much more relaxed experience than in the past because we have got to know the park a bit better and learnt how to get the most out of our day. So, I thought I would share some of our tips with you.
- Arrive before opening – we left the house at 7.30 am as it is about 1.5 hours drive from our home. We arrived at around 9.20am after a loo stop, giving us time to head to the toilets before heading into the park and get down to Miniland ready for the gates to open. The stage in Miniland saw a little show from Emmett, Olly the Dragon, The Magician and Batman to officially open the gates at 10 am. We found it worked to head to the further side of the park and work our way back to the entrance through the day.
- Priority Parking – The Priority Parking is £12 but it was so handy to be parked so close to the entrance and not have to try and find our car in the massive main car park after a long day. Also if you need to pop back to the car for anything it isn’t too much of a trek.
- Head to your favourite ride first – before you go research the map and decided what your kids are desperate to do, then head straight there when the park opens to avoid the mega queues.
- Take a Picnic – Not only will taking a picnic save you a packet but it gives you the option to have snacks whilst waiting in the queues. Also when your kids are in need of food you don’t have to research and think where to go and then queue.
- Leave before the rush – In the past, we have wanted to get every minute of fun out of our day at Legoland by not leaving until the park closes but this has resulted in large queues and taking forever to get out of the car park, before even starting our trek home
- As the summer arrives and Duplo Valley Splash Area becomes popular on the sunny days, it is a good idea to pack the kids swimwear, so they can get water and change back into their clothes afterwards.
- Always take raincoats – hopefully, you will have a rain-free day, but some of the rides, The Viking River Splash, and Pirate Splash
- Get to shows early – The Pirate Bay is where the very popular for show time so get there early, so take you can get a seat, this also gives you the opportunity to tuck into your picnic if you time it right.
- Check ride suitability – check your child’s height before you go or by the entrance, there is a display with which rides can be used over each high limit. Also as a larger than average family 1 adult to 5 children if I am visiting on my own the adult to child ratio is very important as there is no point in heading for a ride that we can’t all enjoy together. Now my eldest has turned 16 this has been eased a little but some rides have to be left for days out with Grandma.
- Take a Pushchair for as long as you can – the Legoland Winsor site has a steep hill, so little legs can get tired, plus it is always good to carry the picnic, coats and jumpers on.
Warwick Castle – Knights and Castles not just for boys. Our final Merlin trip out for the summer holidays was to Warwick Castle. I have to admit it wasn’t first on our list when we got our Merlin Annual Passes earlier in the year. But […]