We have just got back from a weeks camping in Cornwall.Â We based ourselves out of the Summer Valley campsite near Truro.Â
Our week consisted of:
Cornwall has so much to see and do, normally when we are down there we go diving, but this time we didn’t take the diving gear, only the snorkelling kit (see my diving blog) so that we could enjoy the other attractions of Cornwall.Â
As we were planning this trip we kept a close eye on the weather forecast and were prepared to go and do a lot of wet weather activities, such as the Eden project, and the zoo’s etc. But the weather held good all week and we spent most of the time on the beach and in the sea.Â It was excellent fun.Â PerranporthÂ is a great beach but you’ve gotta get down there early or there is no chance of finding a parking space.Â We spent a whole day there, bodyboarding and flying the kites. Scott, Elizabeth and Emily all tried the bodyboard and were great.Â Weighing next to nothing, they were catapulted in on the smallest of waves and loved it.Â We took our waterproof housing for the video camera which came up with some great video shots.Â I shall have to see if I can digitalise some of the clips and post them on our blog.Â Â Even Lisa and I managed to get a sneaky morning off from the kids, watched by friends who we were camping with, and headed off with some of the others for early morning bodyboarding with the whole beach to ourselves.Â A lot of fun.Â Â
Something that we would highly recommend is the Camel Trail, from Padstow to Wadebridge and on to Bodmin.Â A very picturesque bike ride along an old disused railway line. Being a former railway line, meant it was fairly flat with no major inclines to slow one’s progress making it suitable for all ages to cycle along.Â Even Emily had a go for a little while.Â One word of caution though, it can get very very busy, the M25 of cycle paths. There were hundreds of people doing the same as us.Â We only completed the first section from Padstow to Wadebridge and back (much to Scott’s disgust, he wanted to do the full 36 mile round trip), a total of 11 miles.Â Scott led the way with Lisa carrying Heather on the child seat, whilst I towed Elizabeth and Emily (and emily’s bike)in the trailer.Â It was a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon, slightly overcast, which meant we weren’t cycling in the blazing sun.Â After our ride we loaded the bikes back onto the car and walked into Padstow for Pasties and ice cream.Â We managed to find one of the few food shops not owned by Rick Stein! And the queue for his takeaway fish n Chips at Â£9 a pop reached out of the door and around the carpark.Â No fish n chips is that good and my pasty was delicious.Â Not a Ginsters in sight!
We’ll add some pictures to the gallery once we’ve sorted through them and maybe try and sort out the video clips.Â
The children have been on half term this week and to begin the half term we took a quick hop across the channel to go and see Aunty Su, Uncle George, Hannah, Zoe and Ciaran, who we have not seen in over 3 years.
After a very calm crossing on the ferry and getting stuck in the rush hour traffic in Antwerp we made to the Belguim, Holland border where Su and the children were waiting for us.Â
Whilst we were there we spent time visiting Eindhoven, playing in this fantastic woodland playpark (perhaps Aunty Su can tell us the name of it) and swimming and playing in this superb indoor lagoon with lots of slides and wavepools. The children loved it and I think so did Mummy.Â She was desperate to get all theÂ girls on this one slide that tookÂ you into a big bowlÂ thatÂ you went round andÂ around in until you dropped out of the bottom into a deep pool.Â Â Elizabeth and Emily had to take aÂ swim test to show the lifeguards thatÂ they could swim before they were let on. They passed and had aÂ whale of a time.Â
It was absolutely great to see all the children playing together getting to know each other and having a great time.Â
We’ve put lots on pictures on to our gallery.Â If you need the password drop us an email.Â
For Easter we jumped in the car, strapped the bikes to the back and headed north to see Grandma and Granddad and also Aunty Claire, Uncle David, Jessica and new baby Joseph.Â Â Having enjoyed fabulous weather in the south over the weekend it was a bit of shock to arrive to overcast skies on Easter Monday in Scotland, but thankfully before the week was out the weather had cleared and we were able to enjoy hiking again up Tinto and a really enjoyable bike ride around Biggar and Broughton.Â
The reason for going up to Scotland during (more…)
It is now nearly a week since we got back from our trip to America to see Aunty Jenny get married to Gerry. It was a really good trip as all of Lisa’s family were able to be there together for the first time in nearly 5 years. The wedding went really well even if the weather decided to get a little windy that day it certainly didn’t spoil the day at all. Jen looked fantastic and Gerry didn’t look too bad either. Some Pictures from the wedding
We were very kindly lent a house by the brother of one of good friends who we were desperate to see again but they couldn’t make it from Boston to Utah at the right time, which was the only dampner on an excellent holiday. So we stayed in a really nice part of Salt Lake on the Eastern side of the City near to the University of Utah or the U as it is called. I really liked the area, a very leafy suburb. We shared our time between staying in Salt Lake and heading down south towards Provo where Jenny lives. We were able to go and do the temple square thing and see all the sites aswell as go horse riding, swimming etc. Some Pictures from Salt Lake and Jenny’sÂ , Here are also some pics from Dave & Claire’s website
We got to meet up with Matt & Bev again which was so good to hang out again with such good friends and Matt took Scott, Sarah and myself down to Arches national park for the day on Memorial day where we were able to do a bit of hiking and 4×4 driving off in the mountains. Some Pictures from our Trip to Arches.
While we were there also we even got to do a bit of diving which was quite unexpected, you can read about that over at the diving blog.
The pictures tell the story much better than the words so click on this link here to open up the slideshow.
for the pictures click here
It felt like we had an extra long Christmas, as we didnâ€™t have to settle back into real life for too long before we were able to shoot off and go on our fabulous holiday. Mummy used the excuse of it being daddyâ€™s 30th this year and that this was his present, a bit early but the best time for us to take a diving holiday. Any excuse hey?! But no one was complaining.
Â The flight over to Oman was fine it was in the evening so we all just settled down after the initial excitement of being on an aeroplane, and pressing every button and looking at everything. Grandma and Grandad C met us at the airport in Muscat, they had flown in from Bahrain the night before. It was great to see them as we hadnâ€™t seen them for a long time. Daddy and Grandad picked up the hired car, a Toyota landcruiser( which worked out as a lot of fun over the days) mummy, grandma and the kids went in the airport van, it was interesting as we picked up a few hitchhikers on the way. We drove the 100km to our resort the Al Sawadi beach resort. It was fabulous. Grandma and granddad had a room separate from us and mummy and daddy had ajoining rooms with the children.
The rooms were not quite ready for us when we arrived so we went and sat by the pool to chill for a little bit, to waitâ€¦mummyÂ had other ideas, she thought it was the perfect time to go and break her finger!! Something about rescuing the girls off a rather badly blown up bouncy castle like thing, with dodgy safety standards. Any way there we were first day not even booked in and a run to casualty, what made it more fun was that it was Eid holiday (their equivalent to Christmas day) so no staff in the clinic, they had to phone someone to come in and man the x ray. Anyway we got a lovely picture of mummyâ€™s dislocated and fractured finger.Â Of course the worry was that She wouldnâ€™t be able to dive with it, oh no mummy is hard core she just strapped a lolly stick to her finger with some insulating tape an away she went!
Â Â We all thoroughly enjoyed the resort pools, to have a good splash around in. There was a nice size baby pool that the kids could safely play in, and experiment with their snorkelling stuff. The weather was a lovely 26 degrees c so lovely with out being too hot, we did have a couple of daysÂ of cloudy, rainy weather, where the diving was cancelled but we just jumped in the car and went and played in Muscat. We went to a really fun childrenâ€™s museum there, and in the evening a very â€œculturalâ€ Muscat festival, I am sureÂ we all starred on Omani telly in some form. Probably disturbing the dancing by having to take the girls to the toilet and then escaping by jumping over the wall, although grandma lost her nerve half way though and nearly got stuck, we are still not sure how she got out of there.
Other days were spent on the beach, either playing football, collecting shells or just building sandcastles and splashing in the sea.
We also really enjoyed the food there, always having a wonderful breakfast, in the resort; this is where Scott discovered French toast. Usually some toasted sandwiches and chips for lunch, with a few pastries we had saved from breakfast and then good Omani food for dinner, whether it was BBQ of shish kebab , room service, of homus and tabuli or mumâ€™s favourites room service steak sandwich. I think we did sneak in one Mcdonalds. Grandma and Granddad were great fun to be with, and mummy and daddy really appreciated their help looking after the children while they had some time together, either diving, or enjoying a night out. It was great meeting some of the members out there, and making new friendships. They were inspirational to us as they keep the faith in their small numbers; we enjoyed a lovely ward meal together.
We also met one of daddyâ€™s friend form Yorkshire diverâ€™s Neil, he had us all over for a wonderful BBQ at his place, it was like a palace. Very nice family.
Â One of the highlights was playing on a nearby sand dune, mummy really wanted to this to relive child hood memories of playing on the dunes. It was so much fun, Scott astounded everyone by racing to the top of a giant dune before the rest of us were even half way, granddad struggled a little but made it. Even Emily got to the top, we all loved racing, rolling, jumping down. We just had to watch out for the 4 by 4s, who were also having a lot of fun on the dune.
On the 30th we caught a quick flight over to Bahrain, to visit at Grandmaâ€™s and Granddads. We enjoyed chilling with them, the kids loved playing with Yorkie, although Iâ€™m not sure she was quite so thrilled. We went on a boat ride to see dolphins, which was cut a bit short because of engine trouble, but still nice, we then did a reminiscing tour for mummy, going back to Awali, and her school St Christophers, she met up with an old teacher of hers Mr Gaunt who gave her and Scott a tour around, the girls we asleep so daddy stayed with them. We went to a big play centre, where we were the only children. Mummy and daddy then had a night out, shopping at the souq, going to the new mall and catching a movie, Oceanâ€™s twelve. A fun time.
The filght back was a little more eventful as we were delayed by a visit by the King who was flying out, which closed the airport, and we were then diverted to Abu Dhabi to pick up some stranded passengers, so a nice 6 hour direct fight, became a really fun packed 11 hour fight, plus having a drunk thrown off for being abusive to the staff. Luckily the children were exceptional and we got through it not too badly tarnished. Mummy and daddy have written an appropriate letter to Gulf air, so hopefully we will be able to go back soon, for free!! Â Â
Friday 30th April 2004
April has been a really busy month and this is why we havenâ€™t kept our diary up to date till now.Â We all went on holiday to Cyprus where Uncle Christopher lives.Â Grandma and Granddad B and Aunty Kirsty and Leah and Kim went with us. We had to go on an airplane late at night.Â All the seats had their own TVs and Scotty stayed up all night enjoying the programmes.Â He watched â€œcheaper by the Dozenâ€.Â It was a lot of fun having your own TV.Â Emily was very tired and she cried and cried and cried until she fell asleep in Daddyâ€™s arms.Â The whole plane thought she wasnâ€™t going to stop, but she fell asleep before we had finished taking off she was so tired.Â Elizabeth was very good, she wasnâ€™t too sure about taking off, it was a bit scary she said but she also liked the TV and fell asleep on Mummyâ€™s lap even though she had her own seat.
When we all got to Cyprus we had to drive to our villa but it wasnâ€™t ready so we all went to the beach. It was really hot and we had a lovely time but Granddad fell asleep on the beach and got sunburned on his face â€“silly Granddad!!!!Â Â
Then we got to our Villa, it was huge and called â€œBellinaâ€.Â (some pictures) We really liked it, Elizabeth and Scott shared a room and Emily had her cot in Mummy and Daddyâ€™s walk in wardrobe it was that big.Â It had its own pool as well, which Scott jumped straight into without any one being ready.Â He was a bit surprised because it was a little deeper and colder than he thought it would be!!!!
While we were at our villa we could play all sorts of games.Â It was fun to move all the stones around the garden, Daddy wasnâ€™t too happy when we put some of the stones in the pool, as he had to go in and dive to the bottom and get them all out.Â Hee Hee Hee.Â Â
We all went to Polis on Friday 9th and visited the village and the beach, Scott and Elizabeth went off exploring through the long grass and trees.Â It kept them entertained for hours as they were playing at being explorers.Â Every now and again Elizabeth would pretend to be stuck and need Scott to come and â€œrescueâ€ her.Â It was very funny, they would be walking around with big sticks bashing down the undergrowth to fight their way through.
The next day Uncle Christopher took us all to Lara Bay which is a Turtle Sanctuary.Â We didnâ€™t see any turtles but we did go rock climbing.Â Chris taught Scott how to climb looking for proper foot and hand holds.Â He loved it and was very good at it.Â
On the Sunday we went to Church in Limassol (Lemesos) where we met up with some members from the UK.Â Itâ€™s a small world in the Church.Â Elder Bortone was serving his mission there at the time and so he showed us round.Â He came back to our villa with the other missionaries later in the week after a branch activity day for a BBQ.Â
The next day Mummy & Daddy went scuba diving, as Daddy managed to pass the tests so he can try and keep up with Mummy.Â They have some pictures of when they went diving, Click here to see them. Grandma & Granddad B looked after us children.Â We went to the beach with them and played at the villa, all lots of fun.Â After Mummy & Daddy came back from their diving, we all went to Paphos Karting Centre and had a go at the karting.Â Daddy was the winner, he beat Uncle Christopher TWICE!! Although Uncle Christopher was beating Daddy until the last corner, when he nearly had a crash with Aunty Kirsty!! Instead he drove into the tyre wall.Â Oh well.Â The karts were a little too big and quick for children but there was still plenty to do, if you have a look at the pictures in the gallery you can see Scott in the helicopter and Elizabeth and Emily driving their boat.Â Also they had ice creams and Aunty Kirsty had to tell a lady off for being rude about Elizabeth, good ole Aunty Kirsty.Â After karting we were all hungry and so we went to McDonalds, er yum.
The next day was Tuesday and Mummy phoned up a man and we all went on a boat to go Paragliding.Â That was a lot of fun.Â Click here and you can see all the pictures. To get to the boat we had to get onto a Jetski.Â We all went on that even Emily, Elizabeth was the last to get onto it, she was a little scared but she got on with Daddy and it was all fine.Â When we were all on the boat it took us out into the sea.Â Mummy was the first to have a go on the paragliding.Â She had to put on this special harness and then get onto the back of the boat where they strapped her onto this big parachute. Then whoosh!! She said she really wanted to do it as her mummy; Grandma C. had never let her on their family holidays. Click on here to see and hear what it is like to Paraglide
Â She said it wasnâ€™t so much an adrenaline rush as quite a peaceful experience, floating up in the sky, very quiet and that the water was so clear you could see right down to the bottom. Even grandma B and granddad B had a go! We then went across to another beach where mummy, daddy , aunty Kirsty and Leah all had a go being pulled on a banana boat, and then on rubber rings behind a speed boat, mummy said that was a great fun, very fast and exciting.!! She is such a big kid still, and daddy is just as bad.
Â The next day we went to visit Uncle Christopher at the RAF base in Akortiri. The cool thing was, the red arrows were there practising their drills, so we had a private viewing, with all the pilots waving at us, it was very impressive seeing them so close up.
We then went into Limassol to do some souvenirÂ shopping, just to find all the shops and market shut early on a Wednesday, we did have a lovely lunch though at one of the cafes, us children all had pancakes with ice cream and mummy had a huge Greek salad, which she found she was rather partial to. We did find a really fun play park on the sea front which we all enjoyed. Mummy and daddy said because we were so good going around the closed shops they would buy us an ice cream from the ice cream van. We sat on the bench to eat it, having a perfect Kodak moment, within the space of a few seconds disaster struck with Emily sticking her ice cream into her hair, Elizabeth wetting herself and then Emily dropping her ice cream all down Elizabeth, and not to forget Scott pulling down his trousers and peeing against the tree. Mummy and daddy looked on in horror, but couldnâ€™t help just laughing, it was really quite funny.
We visited Aphroditeâ€™s rock, where apparently the goddess was born, not much to look at even after we realised exactly which big rock in the sea it was.Â Â
On the Thursday 15th April we had a fantastic day at Pathos Bird Park, just our little family went, which was nice and we just trundled around looking at all the exotic birds, giant tortoises, horses, deerâ€™s etc we found out mummy is fluent in ostrich!!
There was also a little childrenâ€™s petting area, where we enjoyed holding little baby rabbits, Emily liked cuddling them like teddy bears. There was also a really fun play park, not to mention really tasty ice cream. Mummy and daddy timed it just right so we didnâ€™t get too tired. I think it was really fun as it was not busy at all and we could just have fun running around. Grandma and Granddad went sight seeing for the day, which I think they enjoyed.Â
Mummy and daddy said that because we had been so good they would take us out to a fancy restaurant, letâ€™s just face it, it is because mummy wanted to go! We all got dressed up and had a lovely time. Â Even though Elizabeth spilt her drink and fell off her chair, we had a great time. The waiters were very friendly and both Elizabeth and Scott had ice creams with sparklers, they were very impressive.
Â On Friday afternoon we went to a play area, like serendipities called kids kingdom, Elizabeth and Scott loved it, just their thing.
That evening mummy and Grandma B went horse riding, the scenery was beautiful as was the sun set but grandma felt a bit nervous on the horse, it being a few years since she had last ridden at age 15!! So they kept the ride simple.
Â Â Early on Saturday morning, Mummy and daddy went on their second dive, to a place to see Roman anchors. They said it was really good as it was just them and Billy the dive leader, they could spend all the time they wanted. The sea was a little rough and mummy felt a little green to say the least, while sitting in the boat. Although she was fine once in the water. She also used a borrowed suit which was a lot more comfortable for her (daddy has since sold the other 7mm suit, yeah for eBay).
After Church on Sunday we went up to the Troodos Mountains for a picnic, daddy nearly got offered a job from some Arab people who we got talking to and who were setting up a mobile phone network.
Mummy and daddy were very excited to go diving at the Akortiri fish reserve so travelled over to Limassol to do that to go with a different dive group. It was very disappointing; the dive leader didnâ€™t know the area so they ended up just swimming over nothing for Â½ an hour getting cold. Which got worse as they had a 40min boat ride to the next area, by which time mummy was very cold and a little exhausted, daddy looked after her very well. And they enjoyed the 2nd dive but had to cut it short as mummy got too cold, as did one of the dive team, who was showing some very worrying signs. Mummy and daddy did get a refund for the first dive, but were disappointed they didnâ€™t get to dive the site they really wanted to. Mummy and daddy met up with everyone back at pathos at the bowling alley, for family home evening. It was really fun Scott and Elizabeth were very good at it; Emily enjoyed it too and impressed everyone by picking up a bowling ball weight lifter style.
For our last full day in Paphos we decided to go and do some sight-seeing which involved us finding the Odeon (an old Amphitheatre, which is still used for summer plays) and visiting the Tomb of the Kings.Â Scott and Elizabeth loved climbing up and down the rocks and steps in the amphitheatre.Â We took a lot of pictures; these are in the gallery in our picture archive.Â Â Before we knew it, it was time to pack our suitcase and come home.Â We had to leave the villa by 11am, and so when we were all packed we said goodbye and took a group picture on the stairs.Â It took a lot of goâ€™s to get the picture right as Emily kept moving and then Daddy wouldnâ€™t get back in time from setting the camera.Â After finally getting the right pictures we got into the cars and drove to Limassol where we went to a hotel to wait for our airplane to take us home.Â While we were at the hotel we went swimming in their pool and enjoyed the little spa pool which was like a hot bath it was that warm!! It did make the pool cold though when you jumped back in!!!!!.Â Soon though it was time to leave the hotel and head for the airport and back on our plane to head back to England.Â We flew all through the night so that when we arrived in London it was morning.Â Grandma B drove us home in Daddyâ€™s car, Daddy had to go to work and so he went and got the bus to take him to his work.Â He needs to earn more money for us to spendÂ Â
Busy time Daddy (as Elizabeth would say), Busy time!