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Travelling with a toddler #8 – Traditions and Memories

I remember attending a training course a number of years ago where we were all asked to share a memory from our childhood…nobody shared anything expensive or materialistic, everyone had a memory that involved time, attention and the majority some sort of tradition.

This has impacted massively on my parenting and although I’ve always known experiences over objects were important, from that day I knew I wanted to make sure when I had a family that we would create some traditions that we’d all look forward to repeating over and over.

Now I have my own little family that is due to expand again in a few weeks (eekk, that’s scary!) and Ted is at an age where he is starting to understand and get excited about things so we thought it was time to start. Lots will just find us naturally I’m sure, some will follow on from experiences Rich and I had as children and others we’ll create ourselves but all will be about minimal money and maximum quality time and attention.

Our first family tradition happened while we were away in Cornwall this August…

Fish and Chips on the Beach!

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It was a definite hit!

Ted was not remotely phased by the amount of sand he injested along with his chips…in fact I think he saw the deep clean of his teeth as an added bonus!!

We had an hour and a half of quality time, digging, paddling, finding stones, watching the sky change colour and eating chips plus staying up late…and it was awesome!

Now to get thinking about our next tradition – do you have any you’d like to share?

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Travelling with a toddler #7 – The Eden Project

We have never been to The Eden Project before and decided we couldn’t be only a few miles down the road at the lovely Cornwall Hotel (more about that here), on a beautiful sunny day with a toddler that needed wearing out and not go for an explore…

Beware, this review is mainly through the eyes of a 1.5 year old so may not offer all the educational and horticultural insights you hoped for!

Ted says –

“I spy with my little eye…

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Sometimes walking becomes a bit too much, sit in a buggy though? No!
I want to fly like those people on the zipwire overhead.
Daddy, Daddy….

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And then giggle with Mummy about those funny giant golf balls – what on earth are they?? Find out a bit more here if you’re interested!

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Oooo, now this looks more up my street – yay, adventure club!!

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I loved exploring and learning all about dinosaurs with Daddy and Grandad, RAAAAAA!!

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And then, because we were on holiday I was allowed to eat treat food with silly Daddy, yummy Ice Cream!

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I did then let Daddy have a tiny rest to enjoy some treats of his own…

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Meanwhile, my cousin Cailynn and I had lots of fun spinning in the Teapigs chair…

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But not for too long because Cailynn and I needed Daddy to help us find ‘real’ dinosaurs that were roaming about…

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Some people were scared when we found them and said I was confusing Dinosaurs with cats with my calm stroking approach, Daddy said we call these people wimps and to ignore them!!…

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I had a great day and was relieved to finally find somewhere that could not only tire me out so Mummy could have a nap later in the afternoon too but that also had enough bananas to satisfy me…

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And that could teach Daddy and Me how to import enough coffee to see Mummy through the next few months!!…

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I will definitely be coming back again…there is so much to see and learn here and I know I’ll like it even more once I’m a bit bigger!”

As you can see, Ted enjoyed himself and he wasn’t the only one. This is a great day out, as well as an 18 month old we had a 7 year old and an 85 year old (plus 20, 30, 50 and 60 somethings!) in our party and everybody had a lovely time.

Although entry is not cheap there are discounts for eco travel to the site, online booking and you can claim an annual pass for the same price as single entry by donating your entry fee (all explained here) which is amazing if you live nearby or even just intend to return to the area within 12 months – I saw lots of Mummy and buggy groups making the most of this.

If you get the chance to visit before 2nd September 2015 while Dinosaur Uproar is still on then we would definitely recommend you do – it was a real highlight for all of us.

Please do let us know if you visit The Eden Project and share any places you have visited that you think we may enjoy too.

This is an unsponsored review, based solely on our experiences.

Life Unexpected
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Travelling with a Toddler #6 – The Cornwall Hotel and Spa

This week we packed up the car, our new car with the amazingly big boot…oh goodness I’m such a Mum now! And off we headed to Cornwall.

We were attending a family wedding on Saturday but before that we had three days of relaxation with my parents, niece and Grandmother and were super excited about getting away.

We arrived in St Austell at lunchtime but the reception staff at The Cornwall Hotel and Spa were welcoming and happy to allow us to check in early. This was great and meant we could make the most of the facilities.

Our first stop after unpacking was the terrace for drinks in the sunshine whilst admiring the beautiful surroundings. There are a selection of games and activities kept out there for children (of all ages!) to enjoy too which we thought was a great touch.

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The swimming pool is lovely and children can use it until 7pm which I think is a really fair time, it allows you to head out for the day and still be able to fit in a swim before dinner and bed.

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There is a beautiful grassy area that the pool and ajoining terrace look out over that offer the perfect relaxation spot for tired parents (especially ones like us, lucky enough to have grandparents with them)

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But is also ideal for little people to explore too…

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Our room was spacious, bright and modern with all the amenities you would expect to find and a lovely balcony which was perfect for relaxing on in the evenings, appreciating the view…and taking the odd picture on!!

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Breakfast was great and included in the room price. There was a hot buffet but other items were available cooked to order too. We didn’t find it necessary to order though as they didn’t keep the buffet over flowing, just updated it little and often so things were really fresh and tasty. The staff in the mornings were brilliant, always on hand and really friendly – especially with the children.

We also highly recommend The Clearing Spa…taking a couple of hours to ourselves was amazing and we both felt very pampered after our treatments (A Real Nuturing Experience for me and a De-Stress Muscle Massage for Rich).

On site parking and WiFi are both included in the price of the room.

If you’re looking for somewhere to stay in this country with little people then look no further than The Cornwall…if you can talk some family members in to coming with you and babysitting a bit too then even better!

The Hotel is close to the Eden project and makes a great base for exploring the local area.

Rooms in late July/early August 2015 at The Cornwall Hotel and Spa started at £155 per night.

This is an unsponsored review based solely on my experiences.

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25 Week Update

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I had a mini ‘I’m soooo fat’ melt down this week and then had it very quickly counterbalanced when talking to a Mum I’d never met before in the swimming changing rooms today who while I stood in front of her in my bikini didn’t realise I was pregnant – what she must have thought I’d had for breakfast I have NO idea!!!

OK, so I accept my meltdown may have been a little over the top but I also think this belly is a little hard to miss now? Surely?

Generally I’m still doing really well – I’m taking Omprazole to try and reduce the indigestion and sickness which does seem to be helping and most of the time I’m pretty sane and reasonable although there was an incident where Rich cooked a curry badly that I sobbed for an hour over which was a low point!!

Sleep is pretty hit and miss still but I have a few tricks up my sleeve that I’m hoping are going to make that better…the first starts tomorrow and is an early evening relaxation class – it complements the hypnobirthing methods I used in my labour with Ted (and will again this time) and is a chance to take an hour to myself to completely zone out and relax complete with a pillow and blanket…ahh Bliss!

The second is a collaboration I’m looking forward to sharing with you all very soon and the third is a few days in Cornwall for my brother’s wedding complete with Spa Hotel and doting Grandparents to help with the little dude – I’m so excited for us all to go away together and to be able to spoil ourselves a little with relaxation and some quality family time, just what we need right now.

I will report back with local recommendations and hopefully stories of fun, love, laughter and plenty of peaceful sleeping!

Meanwhile, this week in Toddlerland Ted has turned 18 months and really mastered his scooter…

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Become very attached to his helmet, wearing it at any opportunity…

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And has realised that we all think it’s very cute when he folds his arms then sits ‘thinking’!!

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It’s all rock n roll around here!

 

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