Monday, July 31, 2017

One week down

The first week of the summer holidays seems to have flown by. I am having a hard time keeping a grip on what I have been up to. Now Laura and family live so much nearer they seem to be popping in and out or we are over there and its hard to not get the days mixed up.

As well as our trip to Wingham Wild Life we took the boys to the Fun in the Park Day. Originally this formed part of the Herne Bay Festival and was really a stage for the annual dog show, then a problem with dates meant that a few years ago it became an event in its own right. The first year we went, we had only just moved in so we strolled down with our little 2 year old Finley and had quite a good time as he climbed on the fire engine and enjoyed the hook a duck.This year we again went down the hill with high hopes of a good time.

The kids were enthralled by the sight of the Vintage Cars and the bouncing castle as we entered the park and looked down the hill. They became less enchanted when they came to realise they were not allowed to touch the gleaming polished-to-a-mirror finish cars or tractors and quickly turned away to look for more exciting interactive fun.

They wanted to go on the bouncy castle but since we had only bought about £15 with us we said they must look first and then choose the one thing they wanted to go on. Then we walked to the other end, glancing at the stalls. 

There wasn't much to excite the boys, most seemed to be promoting something and so only had leaflets to hand out, or were selling stuff like books or jewellery. Finally at the top end of the park was something for children,  no not the play park that Beckett wanted to go in, but a long queue for free face painting (too long they wouldnt have the patience to wait) and Pip the magician. At first Beckett wanted to stay and watch and Finley didn't. Then Finley sat and watched for a while but Beckett wanted to see some more stalls. I took Beckett, Laura sat with Finley. 

Beckett and I passed a 'throw the tennis ball into rubber bucket' stall, a bread and cake stall, a biscuit stall, another jewellery stall, a hook-the-duck stall, another biscuit stall, the beer tent, the brass band. He cried, we walked back.  It seemed the boys were right, the main choice was the bouncy castle. So that's where we went.

Enjoying  themselves whilst it lasted.

There were already 5 children on the bouncy castle but no one queuing so the boys had their shoes off and were on before we even got our purses open. £1.50 a go, reasonable I thought .... until I discovered they only got 3 mins for that price. And despite the fact that one of the bigger boys bumped heads with Beckett and left him in tears for some of that time, and the fact that unlike the others it took him twice as long to get back on his feet after being bounced over him being so little and all, and the fact that there were no more customers waiting for a go, the woman timed them all on her phone and made them all get off on the dot of 3 mins. I know they have to make their money back to cover costs but throwing them all off didn't get her any more customers and I wasn't the only person disgruntled by her attitude especially since there was nothing signed to tell us how long they would get.  There were tears from several of the children.

We relented and said they could have a go on something else (we were hard pushed to find anything though). Finley wanted a balloon. Both the hook-a-duck and the throw-a-dart stalls were giving away balloons just for having a go. We lined up. We asked the price. £3 a go!! Okay maybe I am out of touch but £3 to hook a duck with plastic 50p toy prizes? Admittedly the dart stall was giving balloons with teddies inside away but .......

We went to the white elephant stall where Finley was happy with his £3 Lego action figure and Beckett was happy with his £1 teddy. 

We went to the play-park!!

Friday, July 28, 2017

Start of the summer holidays.

The holidays have started (not that I have noticed since I have had no work all term) and typical the weather has closed in after all that hot sunny heatwave throughout June. I knew it would the moment we went out and bought a 3.5m banana parasol to put over the new patio furniture. Oh well.

Its not stopped us from being outside though. 
So far I have managed to walk up to Laura and Wayne's new house without getting caught in the rain, and on Tuesday Martin finished the final part of the new patio and dug out and laid the block standing for the refuse bins. The sun has not been good enough to dry off the very wet bag of kiln dried sand needed to fill in the gaps so that still has to be completed, plus I have a (very large yet useless for the job) whacker plate machine sitting on the lawn but I am very pleased with his efforts.

We have still been having fun with the boys too. Yesterday they took me to Wingham Wild Life park (we all have yearly passes) and we had a lovely time looking at animals - they always like to drag Nana through the reptile house as they know those are my least fav creatures,  digging in the sand for dinosaur bones, climbing in the soft play house (a chance for the grown ups to have a quick coffee) and chasing each other up and down the sand hills. We were also fascinated to see the penguin keeper salting the water for her charges comfort. 

 The sand hills are always a popular play area.

Fascinated and maybe a little nervous of the butterfly on mummy's finger.

Laura and I are also finally finding time to get to grips with our holiday together later in the year. We had already booked a pretty decent villa earlier, panicked that all the good places would be booked up. Although it was a large place with plenty of outdoor space, it was a bit of a car journey every time you needed a pint of milk, and the pool was not gated which with our little terror was a worrying thought. We had a full refund on cancellation clause so we were still vaguely looking, but finally, throwing a little more cash at the problem we have now booked a huge place right in the centre of all the activity, a mile from the beach, with its own pool and hot tub (gated) climbing apparatus and wall for the boys) its own putting pitch, bar, and outside kitchen/bbq/firepit with tv! Now we can start to look at all the other little bits and pieces we need (car hire, transfers, hotel accommodation for the final four nights before we fly home). We are getting excited.