Blogger Toy Stories


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This week I’ve been featured over on Kids Parcel on their Blogger Toy Story Section.

If you would like to share your Blogger Toy Story like I did, then you can find out more by clicking here.

What was your favourite toys from your childhood and why?

My most favourite toy was my Petite Post Office. It was so much fun for an organised little bossy boots like me. It had lots of little sections for money, stamps and paperwork, and even a little hatch where you could ‘serve’ your customers. My heart broke a little the day my brother held it to ransom during an argument and then threw it down the stairs, smashing it horribly. I’ve never quite forgiven him for it!

What are your children’s favourite toys?

My 2 year old son just loves anything Thomas and Friends…in particular the mini trains that have magnets to connect them. He has lots of toy cars and a garage with ramps that he likes to let them roll down. My 4 year old daughter is getting into Barbie and also loves the creativity of Lego. She gets so excited to make her own little worlds with it. She also really likes board games like snakes and ladders and ludo. We like to keep thing traditional in our house, too.

Which of your children’s toys do you really like?

If I’d had the chance to play with any of my kids toys when I was little, it would have to be their scooters. My daughter has a flickr one that is amazing and it’s a fun way to keep them outdoors getting exercise. I wish I’d had one as a child.

Are there any of your children’s toys that you don’t like?

Kinetic sand. I really don’t get it. Apart from burying toys in it and pretending to dig them out like archaeologists, I never know what else to do with the damn stuff. Plus it gets EVERYWHERE!

If you were a child now, what toy would you be asking for?

It would be Frozen stuff. I don’t think I’d ever get sick of it. Anything with sparkles or Elsa on it and I’d be hooked. I think I’d also really be just to My Little Pony toys too. And aqua beads or hama beads.  They’re a lot of fun and you get to be creative without the mess!

As well as Emma’s Amelia’s Mum blog, you can also find her on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

I’ve got my 2 stone award, and yes I’m feeling proud of it!


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So after having a great summer and enjoying a little of what I liked every now and again…and babysitting my weight etc, I’m now fully back on track. I’ve finally achieved that oh-so-elusive but attractive 2 stone award. I even got the Slimmer of the Week AND Slimmer of the Month award at the weigh-in a couple of weeks ago. I was genuinely shocked but chuffed.

I can see it my final goal now, I’m more than halfway there. It’s just ahead and my sweaty little hands are going to grab it very soon.

You know how I know? Because last Saturday, I sat in a certain well-known fried chicken restaurant and ate a takeaway sushi pack from a supermarket.

Oh, how times have changed.

And I didn’t even mind. Normally in the past I would have sat there, glowering at everyone while the juicy gravy covered chips were shovelled into thier mouths, wishing all the time that I could sink my teeth into a spicy chicken burger and feel that tingle of lemonade bubbles slide down my throat.

Nope. Nope. Nope.

Not anymore.

I’m not a saint, of course. I’m having plenty of treats and I count my syns very carefully, allowing myself a little tipple at the weekend if I fancy it. And it’s working. I’ve also enjoyed cooking and eating a range of slimming world recipes over the last while, as well as making sure that my lunch and snacks in work are all healthy options. I really enjoy making myself and the kids the sw carbonara recipe (I add some mushrooms in) and we’ve also enjoyed the beef stuffed sweet roast potato recipe. another favourite is actually a Lorraine Pascale recipe of Honey and Mustard spatchcock chicken which is only about 6 syns for the entire chicken (no skin, of course!) and I’ve had that with beans, broccoli and boiled potatoes. And always a favourite is the slimming world Tikka Masala ready meal, which I have at the weekend when the G Man is ordering his typical chinese takeaway. I’m just trying really hard to make the right choices.

So far, so good. It’s less than 10 weeks until Christmas, so another pound a week would be slow but steady progress.

Can I do it? Let’s just wait and see.

My Dear Son…


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My dear son,

I’m writing this to you on your second birthday. Yes, you’re two whole years old. I can’t believe how quickly you’ve gone from a little, squishy faced cherub to a long legged toddler, demanding toast and cereal and episodes of Blaze and the Monster Machines.

God, you’re obsessed with that programme. I’m dreaming about it, it’s on so often!

This morning, before I left for work, you broke the television. You didn’t smash it over on the floor or chuck it out the window, rock-star-style, but you pressed the on/off button so many times that the old set simply gave up the ghost, made a fizzing sound and popped loudly, scaring the bejesus out of us all. Then there was the unmistakable smell of burning plastic.

Boys, eh?

You kept handing me different remote controls, saying ‘I fix it, I fix it, Mummy’ in your earnest little voice. I simply couldn’t be angry with you.


Because you’re still learning.

You’re learning to talk, learning to sing, learning to kick a ball.

You’ve learned how to hug, smile and giggle.

You’ve even learned how to use an iPad quicker than your Nana. (Athough that wouldn’t be hard.)

But I’m looking forward to how much more you’re going to learn. I hope you discover so much more about your potential and talents. I want you to understand yourself, know that you are your own man – that someday (hopefully not too soon) you will be someone’s husband and someone’s Dad.

That’s the day my heart might break a little but when it happens, it will mean that I’ve taught you how to be a kind-hearted, loving man with integrity and decency – and that someone else will see the way I do, just how amazing and special you are.

I know I probably have a good few more years of broken things in my future with you…for now its the TV, but it might be a broken window or even a broken arm when you’ve climbed one too many trees – but I’m going to see the joy in every moment and remind myself that you won’t be a soft, cuddly little boy for long and I should soak up every minute until you become a huffy, grunting teenager.

And when that day comes, and you get a part-time job….I will hand you the bill for the broken TV.

With interest.


20 facts about me….


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I was nominated by the rather lovely Naomi from Not A Perfect Parent to give 20 facts about me. It’s been a while since I did one of these…they’re so much fun. Here goes…

  1. I once met Robert Carlisle the actor in Heathrow airport. He signed an autograph somewhat brusquely and then buggered off with my pen. He was somewhat short. In height and in manner.
  2. I have a tattoo on my ankle that I had done when I was 18. It’s completely daft and I wish I’d waited until I was older to decide if I’d really wanted one or not.
  3. I used to be terrified of butterflies until a psychic told me the my were a special omen for me. Now I feel reassured and safe when I see one. (Which happens spookily at times when I really ask for one.)
  4. I. Love. Sushi. Ohmigod. If it wasn’t so expensive I’d live on the stuff. It’s discouraged when pregnant so I had my brother bring me some takeaway sushi to the hospital after I’d given birth. Oh, how posh of me.
  5. I donate blood as often as I can. I’ve a universal blood type so they like to see me coming.  Get on the phone and book an appointment to donate, you’ll feel like a good human being.
  6. One of my favourite lazy things to do is whack on a box set of something totally uncool like Dr Who or Lark Rise to Candleford and not talk to anyone (unusual for me, I know) it’s geeky but it’s mine.
  7. I once pretended to be my husband and applied online on his behalf for Masterchef. The producers called him to an interview in London but he refused to go!
  8. I love anything sparkly. I don’t care that I’m 34 and that’s it’s considered the domain of 8 year old girls. I’ll be dead someday. And yes, my headstone will have glitter on it.
  9. I drive like a man…not sure that isn’t a sexist thing to say but I’m quite an aggressive driver. When I’m alone in the car I take the odd chance and definitely speed too much.
  10. I love musicals. Why can’t a person randomly burst into song in the middle of a day’s work? I do it frequently as my workmates will testify. And anyone who doesn’t like musicals hasn’t got a soul.
  11. I recite Cate Blanchett’s opening monologue along with her at the start of the Lord of the Rings. Word for word. Every time. If someone talks to me during it I will hold my hand up and keep going regardless.
  12. My favourite part of the day is getting in my car and going home, knowing I’m going to see two little happy, sticky faces at the window and get a massive cuddle from my little ones and hearing about their adventures that day.
  13. I really miss going on stage and doing shows. When the kids are bigger I can’t wait to get back to it. By God do I miss the backstage parties, too!
  14. I will pretty much eat ANYTHING except I don’t like the taste of ginger, which was horrendous when I was pregnant and had nausea because it was the only thing that made me feel better. It was torturous having to eat and drink ginger flavoured things.
  15. I cry at anything and everything, but hardly ever in front of people. Those who don’t know me well enough sometimes think I’m quite thick skinned, because I’m loud and a bit bossy (well, a lot bossy) but actually I’m a real softie.
  16. My guilty TV pleasure is watching ‘Hoarders – Buried Alive’ because it makes me feel better about my own cleaning routines!
  17. I’ve written a children’s story book. It might never see the light of day, or the desk of a real publisher. But at least I’ve written it down!
  18. I’m regarded in my family as being a terrible cook. I don’t know where this myth has come from, it’s just that everyone else thinks they are better at cooking, and quite frankly, I’d rather sit on my bum watching Strictly with a glass of wine while they slave at the coal face to make me a juicy fillet steak.
  19. I played the double bass in a youth concert orchestra for nearly 10 years. I never practiced enough or took it seriously and it’s a big regret – because I was told constantly by my tutors that I had ability and promise. I doubt I could even remember to play a note now.
  20. I categorically, completely and totally HATE smoking. Everything about it makes me want to vomit, and I make no secret of this – what’s to like? It drains your finances, makes you smell, people get aggressive when they can’t have one and it rules their lives. Oh, and not to mention the tiny fact that it KILLS THEM. Sorry for the mini-rant, just had to get that one in there!

Thanks for reading!

To follow on the linky, I’d like to tag:

Rachel at Coffee, Cake, Kids

Wendy at Castaway With Dreams

Madeleine at This Glorious Life

Karen at The Next Best Thing To Mummy

Vanessa at A Happy Healthy Mummy


It’s time for the #FloraLunchbox Challenge


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When the new term starts, many parents get the shock of realising that they now have to start preparing lunches. Everyone wants to make sure that thier children have enough fuel in thier little tummies to keep them active and concentrating throughout thier day of learning and fun. And to us, in this house, it’s all brand spanking new. Before now, I’d only ever had to pack a quick sandwich for my two when they went to the childminder. Now that Amelia has started school, well, the penny has dropped that I’ve got to be prepared.

There are so many rules now for lunches in school. Both put forward by school and self-inflicted ones. We were given a list practically on the first day of what is permitted in the lunch box and what isn’t. Kiwis and nuts aren’t allowed (I’m assuming someone is allergic) and certain fromage frais yoghurts aren’t allowed due to high sugar content. That’s grand. I can cope with that – I just have to make sure that I can pack things she will enjoy.

lunchbox-packHandily enough, Flora have begun the #FloraLunchbox Challenge, and it is all about packing delicious and healthy lunchboxes. Flora has created a meal planner to help you put together tasty and nutritious lunchbox combinations, and they want to hear about your lunchbox ideas and challenges! A Flora-commissioned University of Leeds study recently revealed that only 1.6% of children in England receive a packed lunch that meets the nutritional standards set for school meals, with just 17% of lunches containing any kind of vegetables or salad. (Shocking, right?) Flora wants to change that!


So, what is going to be our regular lunchbox routine? I’m a plan ahead type of gal…I literally get panicky sweats if I realise I haven’t organised things ahead of time. So as much as possible I’m going to have any fruit or vegetables pre-chopped and put in containers in the fridge, so I can quickly put my hand on them and assemble them in the lunch box.

I’m going to use the Flora Lunchbox Guide to help me include a mixture of a main, a snack and a fruit and veg from all the relevant food groups. This way, she will hopefully feel that she has an element of choice about what she is eating, while at the same time learning about healthy food. She loves cucumber, hummous, carrot sticks, so thankfully they are easy options. I’m hoping to introduce, olives, new types of cheese and cooked meats – not just crumbed ham!!

I fear the only real struggle I will have when getting to grips with this is the time factor. I don’t want it to become a ridiculously time consuming process. I mean, its a child’s lunch box, I’m not a personal trainer and chef, prepping her for a competition with special meals. It needs to be quick and easy to prepare. There are a couple of really tasty recipes with the #Floralunchbox challenge, I know Amelia with especially like the Moroccan Couscous Salad recipe. It’s really simple and quick to make.

Yes, I’ve got to get organised. I’ve got to build this into my current routine and make sure I’m prepared to have her lunchbox stacked with lots of tasty nibbles, and the ideas from Flora will certainly help. The bottom line is that Flora’s study shows, like I said that only 1.6% of children receive a packed lunch that meets nutritional standards set for school meals? I’m going to do my bit to improve that statistic.

This week, Amelia starts full time hours in school – we’ve tried out the Chicken TikkaWrapflora-wrap which she really likes, so I think this will be her first proper lunch. Watch this space for some more child-friendly lunchbox ideas, I’m definitely going to be getting some inspiration from Flora!




“This post is an entry for the #FloraLunchbox Linky Challenge, sponsored by Flora. Check out their lunch planner and recipe ideas here < >

No more ‘Cro’ crastination!


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I’m no longer crocrastinating*.

*Definition – The act of putting off lots of crochet projects and keep making up excuses why you haven’t started or completed them yet.

Progress is being made on several projects, although I have to admit I have parked the My Little Pony blanket AGAIN. I just realised if I didn’t get cracking on the Attic24 Cupcake blanket then my friend’s little baby would be arrived before it was ready to snuggle them in!

So I got online and ordered the pack – it arrived and it is glorious. The colours in the pack alone make you want to get going straight away they are just so pretty. However I did hit a teeny snag. I, in my typical hasty fashion didn’t fully read the pattern before I started and got almost halfway through the project when I realised the blanket was rather too big for a baby blanket. Obviously this is because it isn’t a baby blanket – it makes up to the size of a single bed cover! D’oh!

By then, it was so far gone that I didn’t have it in my heart to frog it and start again so I parked that one ALSO, and re-ordered the same pack, and will make 2 baby blankets in slightly different dimensions but with the same pattern generally. I finished the first one last night and I am so pleased with it.

Now I just have to get back to the monstrously large one and complete that as a gift for my Mum as she is doing up a spare room and I know she’d love it to complete the look – she dropped enough hints when she saw me making it!

So, I’m on the case. Yes I’m thick and daft and shouldn’t rush into things but the silver lining is I will have 3 gorgeous blankets complete at the end of it – and then of course I will return to the dreaded graphghan!


Parenting badges…have you earned yours?


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So I finally earned that elusive badge.

The one all parents secretly yearn to achieve yet are repulsed by. I changed a child’s dirty nappy without them waking up.

You might not think that is a very big deal, but in the land of parentdom, it’s HUGE. Suddenly, things that we would have been disgusted by before having kids instantly become the height of success in the minefield of parenting.

I was SO proud of myself. My son is a notoriously bad sleeper so the fact that he didn’t wake up was like a double award for me.

It got me thinking how many seemingly silly and slightly disgusting yet strangely skilled tasks we find ourselves performing as parents of little ones. Like the time I fished a poo out of the bath. Tick for the ‘Fish a floater’ badge. The time I literally just held a child and voluntarily allowed them to vomit. On me. Twice. All hail the ‘Got boaked-on’ badge. Or the time I deftly held a child out vertically and the vomit missed me. There was my ‘you’ll never get the stain (or smell) out of the carpet’ badge. And there are countless others.


Some not quite as disgusting, you’ll be pleased to hear. There’s the ‘piggy back’ badge, the ‘play doh’ badge and the ‘lego’ badge, all very pleasant badges to earn. The ‘just got them to giggle their little socks of badge’ is one I’m genuinely proud of – especially with the additional ‘Gave them the hiccups’ bonus badge.

There’s also some tricky ones, like the ‘got them to eat a teeny mouthful of broccoli’ badge sometimes swiftly followed by the ‘got broccoli spat out on my jeans’ badge. I’m also quite proud of my badge for ‘creeping out of the bedroom like a silent ninja’ badge at bed time.

Anyone out there received the ‘can’t believe I just said that to a doctor’ badge?

I did very recently. “Yes doctor, he and his sister thought it would be funny to pull a pink wooly bobble hat down on his eyes and run full pelt, giggling manically, into a wall. Yes I was there. He was just too fast for me.”

Don’t tell my husband but I’ve also been awarded the ‘I like the way you read stories better than daddy’ badge. But its okay because he won the ‘tickle them until they squeal’ badge ages ago.

I’m not fun enough for that one!

I genuinely think there should be a version of the scouts for parents so we can actually have meetings and receive our badges with pride and get a little round of applause.

Oh, and there should be wine.

How else could we get our ‘never drank this much until I had kids’ badge?

Dib dib.


Why I’m babysitting my weight loss…


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Everyone who knows me knows I’m constantly trying to slim down and get healthy. It’s become almost automatic for people to enquire as to the status of my weight loss almost like it’s my third child. How are the kids? They say. Quickly followed by; still at the ‘aul Slimming World malarkey?

And I answer that the kids are great and yes. Yes I am still dieting. And I’m not offended at all. Maybe I should be, some people might be but I don’t think it’s a shameful thing to say that you’re following a healthy eating regime and it isn’t shameful to admit that you sometimes…occasionally..(alright!) quite often fall off the wagon.

wp-image-1644968541jpg.jpgWhen you’re a teacher, the summer often feels like a free-for-all. Like you’ve been given an invisible licence to eat, drink and be merry.  Rather like Christmas, but more with barbecues and less with turkey and gravy.  Although boozing does seem to feature heavily in both!

All teachers know the secret joy of a Sunday night tipple when there’s no school to get up for. It’s a small but important thrill.

This summer, unlike previous years, I HAVEN’T jumped off the wagon the moment school ended and sprinted straight into KFC. (Although to be fair that’s probably the only time you’d see me run anywhere.) I’ll admit, my weight loss has somewhat stalled but I’ve kind of done it on purpose. *Cue the gasps*

But its okay. Because I know I will kick back into gear in September and I’ve managed to get to grips with the right way to eat and the right way to treat. See what I did there…? Well, at least I make myself laugh.

I’m enjoying the summer. I’m enjoying eating out with the family but choosing the better option in the menu. I’m cooking slimming world friendly meals from scratch but not at the weekends.wp-image-1053743508jpg.jpg

I made a lovely Jamie Oliver recipe recently that I adapted to make into a slimming world one and it was gorgeous. I will share it soon. I’m eating healthily but having treats when I really really want one. I’m not losing weight but I’m not gaining it either. Once I get to my target weight this kind of set up will do me nicely, thank you very much.

Because I will let you in on a little secret. I get it now. I finally get it. ‘Not following the plan’ or ‘being off the wagon’ doesn’t actually mean ‘go ahead and eat a whole pizza followed by dessert then a family size bag of crisps‘. Plus the slice of bread and peanut butter. And the leftover curry. And the cheese. And four chocolate digestives. (That’s an edited version.)

20160802_123551It means eat fresh, sensible food. It means don’t lie to yourself that you’re going to lose weight this way, but if you want to enjoy a holiday or a break from work or a family event then it’s okay. Just don’t go overboard.

I’ve two weeks left of the summer. I’m going to enjoy them. So I’m going to keep babysitting my weight loss. After all, 1st 5lbs isn’t a bad bit of progress – I’m almost halfway there!

Over and out.  🙂

Summer Crochet how I love thee…


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Sometimes I put my crochet projects in a bag and literally look at them each day as I busy myself about the house and have that longing feeling – my fingers itch to get to work on them. And usually by the time my little monsters have been tucked up in bed, I’m simply too tired to even pick up my hook – which makes me a little sad and a tad guilty. Especially when I have projects piling up.

But the joy of being a teacher is that summer time means its a little easier to get time to crochet and I have several projects on the go at the moment.

Rainbow dashI’m currently working on my very first graphghan. Graphghan, I hear you say? Yes. Weird word. But words like that pop up so frequently in crochet you become used to it. Basically its an afghan (large blanket) which is crocheted using a graph of an image. Think cross stitch block pattern. There are some amazing patterns online that you can buy in various places and I decided to do one for Amelia as her baby blanket is too little now. I tried to find the link to the Etsy seller page that I bought it from but it doesn’t seem to be there anymore. There are other versions but not the seller I bought it from so if I find it I will add it in. Of course it had to be  My Little Pony pattern and I’m currently up to my eyeballs in rainbow dash coloured yarn and trying (and often failing) to get my head around how many squares to count for each set of stitches.

Maths is NOT my strong point.

I’ve already learned some good lessons about what NOT to do when making an graphghan and I will hopefully write a little blog post on this once I finish the damn thing. It’s turning out to be absolutely huge. At least that means it will do her until she is an awkward teenager and will be too embarrassed to have a My Little Pony blanket. 🙂

Another quick project was the old faithful Repeat Crafter Me owl hat. This has been such a quick go-to pattern and very easy to follow. A friend of mine just had her second baby boy, so I made one for him and a bigger one for his older brother. They were also good for using up left over yarn in a range of pretty blue/grey colours.


It was a friend’s 30th birthday recently and I got her a gorgeous bottle of champagne – yes20160728_170252 the real stuff – was quite tempted to keep it for myself but I resisted! I didn’t have a bottle gift bag so I decided to crochet a little flower for round the neck so she would remember the gift long after the bubbles had been popped.

I’m also waiting to start making a blanket from scraps of yarn for the relaxation room in my school and another project staring at me from the corner of my room is the Attic24 Cupcake Stripe Blanket which I’ve bought the yarn and pattern for as I’m making it for a friend’s baby due in the winter. I’d really better get started – on all these projects!

I never knew a fun hobby could be so stressful…

Oh wait, yes I did – I did musical theatre for years!

I will update soon on my progress as long as my hands don’t fall off while I’m making this mammoth blanket.

Happy hooking! 😉

The Charm of Carlingford


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So it’s been quiet on my little blog page recently. No real reason, just life getting in the way….from work to exam marking to holidays and trying (and currently failing) to potty train a toddler, time just passes by so fast. But I’m back and want to share about our recent family holiday. Every year, we pick a place on our little Emerald Isle and pack ourselves off with our extended family and enjoy a week of rest and fun. Ireland has so many wonderful places to offer families, and I’m not sold on karting the kids on flights to sunnier climes until they are old enough to really appreciate it so for now,  holidays close to home are fine by us.

This year, my only stipulation about where we went was that it wasn’t more than two hours drive away because last year our drive was about 5 hours and Adam did not manage the lengthy journey well….he just refused to nap and wailed the whole way. We opted for Carlingford in County Louth, just over an hour’s drive from Belfast but it genuinely feels like you’re ‘getting away’. It’s a little gem of a medieval village with lots of accommodation, interesting restaurants and of course some great pubs. There’s plenty for little ones too with outdoor pursuit centre, fairy cave tours, a local swimming pool, play park and it isn’t too far a drive from lots of other great attractions.

If you’re reading this and you’ve never been to Carlingford, I’d definitely recommend it. The accommodation we chose was called The Anchorage. A listed building, one time owned by the church and apparently the Bishops’ ‘summer residence’ this house was perfect for us. Great sized rooms, a garden for the kids to play in, and literally a one minute walk from the centre of the village. Oh, and the best thing….? A Jacuzzi bath. *sighs*


Other highlights of our week in Carlingford was getting a pass to the Four Seasons Hotel pool – when the weather typically did the usual Irish Weather antics – we took the kids off to the pool and they just loved it. The G Man and I were given a night off – the excitement was almost too much – and we booked a meal in a gorgeous restaurant called Magees Bistro, where we enjoyed some wine, beautiful food and a fantastic atmosphere. We forced ourselves to NOT talk about the kids. We didn’t last long, of course. We also enjoyed a gorgeous lunch in the famous PJ O’Hares – of course it was a half pint of the black stuff and some locally caught mussels for me. Delicious.


What is great about Carlingford is how close it is to so many other areas and attractions in Ireland. We took ourselves off to the well-known Tayto Park – people in the rest of the UK reading this will genuinely probably think its something crazy from Peppa Pig – but yes, we do have a theme park that is based on a brand of crisps (Tayto) and yes, the branding Carlingford 6and images are a man with a potato head. I’ll stop now. Only the Irish, eh? But we had an absolute ball there. The kids enjoyed the rides (there are many to choose from for all ages), ate candyfloss, visited the circus (Adam was actually spellbound) and even trekked round the zoo. We were there all day and didn’t even see everything. I will warn people in advance that it is pricier than I thought it would be. We paid in advance for our family ticket to physically get in the door, but had no idea that once you’re in, you then have to buy tokens or a wristband to pay for some (most of) the rides that aren’t included in your entrance fee. It was expensive but I think most people would say it was worth it.

Another gorgeous place within a 20 minute drive is the Ring of Gullion, and Slieve Gullion Park. We met up with Granny and Granda who drove down from Belfast with our niece, and we spent the day walking round the Giant’s Lair and seeing the little fairy houses. The kids enjoyed ice cream and playing in the outdoor adventure play park. It’s definitely worth a visit – and it’s free!


Two other restaurants worth mentioning in Carlingford are The Wildwood Café (a healthful whole food cafe with amazing views) and an Indian called The Sitar. The whole family visited The Wildwood Café for lunch and the food was absolutely gorgeous – really Carlingford 2wholesome but with great flavour and no guilt about calorific content in your meal! And on the other side of the coin (calorie-wise) was the Sitar, so nice that we ate there twice, and it really was one of the tastiest Indian meals I’ve ever had.

Other highlights of the village include lots of historic plaques and buildings, and as you amble around you can read up on various details of the village, as well as checking out King John’s Castle, built by Hugh De Lacy – and King John was said to have stayed there in 1210AD. We had an amazing view of it from our house.

But the best part of all, of course, was making memories there with our two little ones – they just soaked up every experience, each moment of laughter and second of fun – whether it was being entertained by trapeze artists in the glamour of the circus tent, or just playing chalk games and hopscotch with Mummy and Daddy in the garden. They loved it all.

Roll on next year. Carlingford – I think you’ll see us again.