We were due to set off for our weekend in Tralee first thing on Good Friday. As we were going to be away for Easter we decided that ‘Easter Bunny’ would come 2 days early. Unfortunately, the ‘bunny’ was a bit too enthusiastic about hiding the eggs and I, I mean bunny, 😉 fell flat on her back on the wet concrete! That meant the journey was put back a few hours so we didn’t set off until after lunch.
All aboard! I’m not normally a fan of travelling by train but when you’re a passenger on the Rathwood Santa Train you’re much more likely to be found singing than moaning.
Unlike the normal rail service there were no delays and after handing over our tickets we were asked if we wanted our cheeks and nose painted red.
Last Saturday we were up bright and early to make our way to Citywest for ‘Disney On Ice Presents Frozen’. It felt a bit odd going to a performance in the morning and E was a bit confused ‘Will it be dark when it finishes?’ he asked. Well that would mean the performance would have lasted 6 hours so I sincerely hope not!
My little piglet had been counting down the days for ‘Peppa Pig’s Surprise’ for weeks so by Sunday he was literally snorting with excitement. (He has Daddy Pig’s oink nailed).
We arrived at the Olympia Theatre with plenty of time to spare (very unlike us) and made our way up the stairs of the ‘Circle’ entrance.
We set off to see Santa at Rathwood, Co Carlow last Sunday morning and thankfully it only took 45 mins otherwise I think E would have burst with excitement. Remind me never to attempt a trek to Lapland.
Tis the season to be scared!
Scarefest sounded right up our street so with E dressed as Jake the Neverland Pirate we crept nervously into The Irish National Stud!
With The Lion King and The Jungle Book being two of E’s favourite films at the moment we decided that it was time to take another trip to Dublin Zoo to see his favourite animals in action.
Fortunately the Asian lion’s enclosure is located close to the entrance so this was our first stop. The male was striding proudly around near to the fence so we got very close, I’m just relieved he didn’t choose this moment to roar! I would have probably screamed far louder than any of the children if he had. E loved the fact that we also spotted ‘Simba’ playing and getting into mischief.
I already covered taking a flight with a toddler in He’s Flying! however I thought it was a good idea to do an update as Friday’s experience was one I won’t be forgetting in a hurry…
We had a lovely week’s holiday in Spain and 24 hours before we were due to leave we decided to get the online check in out of the way. We’ve now started using the app rather than printing the boarding passes so thought it would be a doddle. However, when we looked at the seat numbers we’d been assigned I got a sick feeling in my stomach. My seat was row 14 and E and my husband were sat in row 21 eek! Why did we leave checking in til so late – it’s just that we’ve never had a problem before! I’d love to have gone back in time and done it a few days earlier (mind you if I had the power to go back in time I’d have restarted the holiday too!) Although I was now dreading the flight, that’s nothing unusual, so we decided to get on and enjoy our last day.
Fast forward to boarding and as normal we weren’t in a rush to get on so I kept myself busy splitting the snacks we had into two separate bags as we now wouldn’t be able to share them very easily being seven rows apart. As we got to the top of the steps I explained to the stewardess what our predicament was and she said she would try and look into it. We got to row 14 and I nearly freaked out. What we hadn’t realised was that while my toddler was in 14 C, my husband was across the aisle in 14 D! Sooo a two year old was going to have to be sat next to strangers! This was not good news for us or the couple sat next to him. I don’t think anyone no matter how nice would be up for babysitting a toddler for two and a half hours for free. Yes my husband was an arms length away but there would be a busy aisle between them. With no one paying close attention there wouldn’t be much left on the catering trolley once it got past him!
While the air stewards kept saying they’d do their best to sort it out, with no one willing to switch seats we were out of time. My last resort was to ask the couple in 14A and B if they minded if I sat next to him for take off and then the lady could come and reclaim her seat once the seatbelt sign went off. Thankfully she agreed and while normally I’d be a bit anxious for take off I was just grateful that I was sat next to E. He was of course none the wiser about the situation and just enjoyed the excitement of the plane zooming into the air!
As the seatbelt sign blinked off I turned around to offer the lady her seat back, however I was so grateful when she said not to worry. Fortunately she was happy nattering away to another passenger which made me feel better. With our situation now resolved we could sit back and relax – not. However I was so happy I didn’t mind playing, joking and singing for the remaining couple of hours in the slightest. We will certainly be learning from our mistake…
The subject of one of yesterday’s tantrums was ‘I WANT TO SEE THE SUN!’ I’m not sure quite what he wanted me to do about it but thankfully someone was listening as when we woke up today the sun had definitely got his hat on. We both agreed that a walk was in order so after grabbing our wellies and coats (it was sunny but far from warm) we jumped in the car and set off.
I don’t know about anyone else’s children but wherever we go my toddler has to bring something. Batman joins us for the food shop, Thomas has been to the beach and today Jake and the Neverland Pirates were all packed for our walk. Fortunately, sometimes I can convince him that although it was fun to have them in car he wouldn’t be so pleased if he dropped them while we were out and about. Thankfully today I was in luck and we left the pirates to do some treasure hunting on the back seat.
Our first mission was to climb to the top of the ‘mountain’ (a small hill) and while he was keen to hold hands on the way up, on the way down it was a different matter. Though he’s tripped from running too fast before he still enjoys tackling it himself. I’m not worried about him falling on the grass, my bigger concern is the sheep poop everywhere – yuck! He however isn’t bothered about it surprise, surprise.
His other two favourite things are picking up ‘broomsticks’ and flying around on them and of course…muddy puddles. As he had his wellies on I had to agree to some jumping and splashing although as he got more adventurous even his jeans were covered. He had a great time, the problem was convincing him to get out. With a promise of a little snack when we got home he eventually was happy to leave and as we headed back to the car he gave me a few snorts (as if I needed reminding who to blame for his favourite hobby…)
Of course by now he was getting bored and wanted to be carried but this was not a good option unless I wanted to resemble a mud wrestler. I instead suggested a race back to the car which he happily took me up on.
As we were getting in we were delighted to see six horses and jockeys walking towards us (one of the benefits of living in Kildare) and after screaming ‘hello’ at the top of his lungs he was happy that they each waved at him. After a successful outing it was time to take my tired little piggy home.
We’re just back from a week in sunny Spain and I’ve done a little breakdown of what we did, what we ate and drank, the products I packed and where we partied (only joking, we were tucked up in bed by 11 every night so the clubs probably weren’t even open!)
Where: Valencia, Spain
We used our check in luggage for E’s clothes and bits and pieces and we each managed with hand luggage. How things have changed! I remember a few years ago I struggled to fit all my things in a case weighing 20kg!
My star products:
While I’m away my philosophy is definitely less is more, partly because I like to keep my make up natural and partly because I can’t fit much in my bag! I love multitasking products as they save so much time (great for mums).
Vichy Ideal Soleil BB Cream SPF 50+: I used this product as a moisturiser, foundation and SPF! I bought the version for combination to oily skin and I can verify that it didn’t leave my skin greasy at all. It gave a great natural colour that was suitable for the day and evening.
L’Oreal Paris False Lash Superstar mascara: In the evenings I used this 2 step mascara to give me long, thick lashes and because you can create quite an intense look I didn’t need to bother with eyeshadow or eyeliner.
Garnier Miscellar Cleansing Water: This is great for removing all your makeup and is also lovely and refreshing for when you get back from the beach. My skin is sensitive so I love the fact that there’s no perfume.
Burgers, pizza, pasta, ice cream and delicious desserts. Thank goodness we didn’t bother to hire a car so we could walk off all the calories during the day! Anyone else think this cheesecake’s giving me a lopsided grin??
Estrella Damm (the local beer) for hubby and a cocktail or Sangria for me.
We didn’t have a swimming pool so went to the beach virtually every day. The water was so warm; bit of a contrast to the Irish coast. E had a great time splashing in the sea and also digging sandy puddles to jump in!
Our main day trip was to the Oceanografic Aquarium which is the biggest in Europe. We were delighted to spot Nemo – look closely!
But also came across a less friendly face…
The architecture in the city centre is stunning and although we didn’t get round to looking up what all the buildings were, they made for some great pics!
We took a little train ride (great mode of transport for a Thomas fan) through the park to check out the futuristic buildings at the ‘City of Arts and Sciences’ complex.
However E was more interested in the Monsters Inc characters that we came across outside the Pixar exhibition!
On the return flight we had some bad turbulence soon after taking off. I then said to my husband ‘I don’t like this!’ Unfortunately E overheard and said the exact same thing. He then declared ‘I don’t want to fly home, I want to drive!’ In an effort to reassure him and make light of the situation I then had to draw on my best acting skills to pretend (whilst secretly terrified)that I now loved all the bumping around and that it was great fun being bounced up and down…
In conclusion: Valencia was a hit with us all so in the words of Arnie I’ll (or rather we’ll ) be back!