Today, we had another day in the garden. Some chill time and lots of fun with an #activity or two! Happy Sunday.

Daddy and I moved the old patio and rubble (which will have to live in our garden until the recycling centres open back up) and I think we’ve hidden it rather well. If you spot it I’ll be most impressed.

Where the rubble had been is now where you can see the outdoor dining area. It’s been out of action all winter, which we wouldn’t have used in any case. It’s opened the garden up even more now we’ve cleaned it all! It’s amazing how much space this garden has.

When we bought the house, the garden was full of stuff: rockery, pond, vege patch, pagoda and a 10ft greenhouse. It made the garden feel quite small, it’s amazing what a bit of hard work and a little vision can achieve. I knew this garden had the potential to be a perfect family space.

I cut the grass, tidied up some more of the bushes and watered everything. Whilst the kiddies played this game... they love it. But they do get rather competitive!

What activities have you been up to today?

#mummyphotoaday

Today, we had another day...

We made the most of the day today and it feels good! Whilst Daddy finished off the final 13 patio slabs (which look incredible), I sorted the garden.

I pruned all the bushes, weeded the flower beds, got rid of a lot of thorny weedyness, painted the potting shed door and filled an entire green bin. 😂 I even trimmed the grass edge with grass scissors.

I am loving the garden more and more. I hope that the sun keeps on shining so that we can get it looking how we want before Summer. Making the most of #lockdown. It was lovely as our neighbours on either side, both over 60, offered advice and help today. Deano nearly ran out of sand and one neighbour dropped some over the fence. It’s nice to have a sense of community even though we are all in our homes.

We’re looking forward to playing in the garden tomorrow and making the most of this space.

#mummyphotoaday 
#myhousethismonth #mygardenthismonth

We made the most of...

We have joined the rest of the country and made a #rainbow design in our living room window. The kids have drawn one on a piece of paper and also used window felt pens to design a 🌈 on the pane itself. It looks pretty. The kiddies are very happy with them. They lit up when the neighbours asked for them to make them rainbows for the window.

I love this part of the front garden, you can just see the flowers are about to bloom any day now. Daffodils are hiding in amongst the tulips, hyacinths full of a deep purple, the Heather has come up a nice reddy purple too. By the front door there is a sea of purple from the aster (I think that’s what they are). Can you see the beautiful Camellia to the left of the kiddies too? It’s about to bloom with its bright pink flowers. The yellow Jasmine is just starting to grow on the right side of the kiddies, can you see it climbing up the wall?

There’s so much going on. It looks beautiful. I don’t remember it looking this pretty last Spring. Maybe I didn’t pay much attention. Or maybe these things have grown from random seeds I planted last year and forgot about. I can’t remember what I planted though 🤦🏼‍♀️ Does anyone else do that?

Have you seen many rainbows in the window of people’s homes?

#mummyphotoaday

We have joined the rest...

A very happy birthday to my first furbaby, Rambo. He is 13 today. I can’t believe he’s been in my life for 13 years, we’ve done so much and seen so many places. It’s gone so quickly.

He is so good, his temperament is just perfect. He’s not a yappy dog. He barks to mark his territory but that’s it. When the kids were toddlers, they would pull his fur out in clumps and he would just lay there. He cleans the other pets in the house and always makes sure the kids are safe at night time. It’s so cute. He’s such a loving, fatherly dog.

This little man is my follower at the moment; more so than normal. He follows me everywhere. If I’m on the loo, he will sit at the bathroom door staring at me. When I’m in the bath, he pushes the door open and sits next to me and stares. Right now, he’s currently snuggling under the duvet.

Let’s hope we can go and explore somewhere new in the summer, with amazing views and miles of countryside. Our favourite.

Thanks for all the adventures Rambo 🐾 and the snuggles! We love you lots.

A very happy birthday to...

I wonder what is going through their tiny minds right now? Do you think they consider things like we do? Do you think they #dream of what’s going on? The kids seem to be taking it all in their stride and albeit they are sad they can’t see their friends, they seem to be just getting on with it.

Whereas, I go through waves of different feelings. I’ve discovered I’m at my best when I just take each day as it comes. When I start to think about things globally, or the time period of lockdowns and when the kids are going back to school... that’s when I start to feel worried and glum.

I worry that my employer will soon say “sorry Sonia we’re not paying you anymore as you’re homeschooling”, or the worry that I’m not teaching my kids correctly and they’re missing too much of their education. Or the impact of isolation on the kiddies at this age, making friendships and building rapport with people.

I hope these are worries over nothing. And I know all of the kiddies in the world are in the same boat. But, as a parent you can’t help but worry.

So for now I’m trying not to think negatively. Trying not to think more than 1 day ahead (except maybe planning Easter Sunday dinner) and I’m trying to keep smiling. So my babies keep smiling.

Keep calm and carry on. Isn’t that the saying!

#mummyphotoaday

I wonder what is going...

This afternoons activity with Daddy looked like lots of fun: they gathered sticks and the kiddies built their own pile of firewood for a camp fire. They then sat around the fire pit to test whose camp fire would flame up the best!

Isla created a very structured camp fire, logical and a pattern to where she placed her sticks. Noahs looked more sporadic but covered a wider area.

Neither camp fires took fire, it was quite windy. So the kiddies enjoyed a hot chocolate and marshmallow around their piles of sticks.

They had fun though and that’s the main thing. I’m loving all of these practical tasks they’re doing with Daddy.

I’ve been waiting, all day, for someone to tell me it’s all a dream and we are still going to Dubai. But, unfortunately, no one jumped out screaming April #fool and alas, we are still at home. I’m gutted.

Lots to look forward to though and right now it’s about focussing on our main objective: stay at home at all times, unless to buy essential food & walk the dogs! I have actually loved being at home everyday. It’s my favourite place.

#mummyphotoaday

This afternoons activity with Daddy...

“We are very excited to try out this new food from Forthglade, it smells woofing delicious” 🐾 Straight from the doggies mouth!

I am very excited to announce that I am a new ambassador for @forthglade. What does that mean? Well, I get to try out the products and tell you all how good they are and get special offers and discounts for my followers too!

It’s such a strange time with lockdown, however finding out about Forthglade couldn’t have come at a better time. When I went to get our usual dog foods in the supermarket it had all sold out. So, resorting to online orders seemed a very natural thing to do to ensure our furbabies are fed.

This food is a minimum of 75% meat or fish and is free from junk. With Snoopy, he has a tummy condition which means we have to be careful what he eats, it’s perfect. We will keep you posted on what they thought! 🐾 #gifted

“We are very excited to...

🌼 April is here and along with it comes another set of photo keywords for #MummyPhotoADay photo challenge.

We should have been flying to Dubai today, so my insta squares would have been very different to what they now will be. I’m expecting to see lots of Spring colours and stay at home families instead this month.

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #mummyphotoaday so I can comment and share my favourites throughout the month.

Does anyone have any creative stay at home plans for April?

🌼 April is here and...

Our holiday in Crete with SeaCrete hotels #familytravel

If you have been following my Instagram account, you will have seen from the photos and Insta stories that we recently took a trip to Crete, staying in the SeaCrete hotels. We haven’t been abroad as a family for over 18 months and we were all very excited. I love flying and exploring new places. The last holiday we went on was to Greece, we went to Kos and Noah/Isla had the dreaded chicken pox. We loved Greece though and couldn’t wait to see Crete. 

We didn’t know what to expect from Crete beforehand. I thought it would be similar to Kos; dry and not a lot of people. But it didn’t feel like that when we got to Crete, it was very green, and it felt like there was a lot more life here. When we arrived on Monday 22ndApril 2019, it was cooler than the UK, it had just been 24 degrees in England over the Easter weekend and so we had got used to the hot sunshine. It was cool for the first few days of our holiday and then we had the beautiful sunshine and 27 degrees heat. We couldn’t have asked for more. 

Kalyves Beach Hotel

On arrival we spent a night at Kalyves Beach Hotel, which was in the heart of Kalyves. It has a romantic setting, nestled in the village, by a river and fronts onto the beach. It had a little something for everyone I think whether you are travelling as a family, couple or friends. I would say this is the quietest hotel of the two, there were less children and it felt cosier. The big lobby area filled with comfortable sofas were very inviting for an evening game of Sneak Peek! 

After we had put our luggage in the hotel room, we took a walk around the beautiful bay of Kalyves. It was a nice walk and the bay had calm waves, which was nice as the children ran and splashed. Letting off steam from their extremely early morning and sitting still on the plane. We found a spot in the harbour and watched the fishermen pottering around their boats. We also spotted a tornado on the harbour; it must have been about 12 foot long. I later found out that this was left there from the war. 

The hotel and Kiani Beach Hotel had a similar theme in terms of entertainment: 8:30pm is the mini disco, ran by the kid’s club and they dance energetically around, encouraging the little ones to join in. Then after this the evening entertainment starts. At Kalyves there is one main area where you eat and watch the shows in the evening. It’s what made me think of it as a cosy environment, it felt safe and relaxing. I spotted groups of people on the sofas in the evening: sitting with their children playing, sitting with their friends drinking and laughing or just sitting together admiring the entertainment. It was nice, especially after our busy day. 

Kiani Beach Resort 

From day two onwards, until the end of our time in Crete, we stayed at the sister hotel to Kalyves Beach Hotel: Kiani Beach Resort. It was everything we expected it to be from the website and Instagram accounts that we had mulled over before we booked our flights. The resort is split up into two main areas, it is separated by access for taxi’s and a road to the car park – not a busy road by any means but you have to be careful crossing with small children. We stayed in the new area which had been built only last year, this was the area with the long swimming pool, slide pool for the children and a small park. It had its own restaurant, kids club for the under 6’s, indoor pool, gym and spa. It was great because it was all brand new. Everything felt clean and looked stylish. The other main area was quite large and had the beach front to it, there is a beach bar, restaurant, kids club for over 6’s and the other 2 pools. You can hire kayaks and join in with some of the sporting activities here too. 

We made sure we spent half the time in the new restaurant and the older restaurant, we wanted to make sure we had the chance to eat in both. On Easter Sunday we sat in the beach side restaurant as there was a lot of entertainment on for the guests. It was amazing. I will write up about our Greek Easter weekend in a separate post as I learnt a lot from my trip into Kalyves to witness the mass and burning of Judas. 

I have so much to say about our trip to Crete with SeaCrete hotels that I am going to split it up into a few blog posts, so that I can cover the areas of family travel better. We spent 3 days out and about exploring Crete, two excursions booked with Kiani Beach Resort and a day trip with Kalives Travel who gave us a car for the day. We explored a lot on these 3 days and the itinerary of our adventures will be coming up in the next travel post. 

I will also go into more detail about Kiani Beach Resort, I want to share details of our room, the facilities and important information – like what times the kids club is open! There is just so much to cover. I hope you enjoy the posts, photos and videos. I would love to answer any questions you may have about our trip to Crete and our stay with SeaCrete Hotels, just in case there are things I have forgotten. 

Here are a few of the photos from our stay with SeaCrete Hotels: 

#seacretehotels #kianibeachresort #kianibeach #kalives #kalyves #chania #crete #greece #familyholidays #summeringreece #allinclusiveresort #familytravel #familymoments 

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Our holiday in Crete with SeaCrete hotels #familytravel

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