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Travelling to new places with kids ✈️ What’s the best age? ❤️

I read an article the other day in Travel & Leisure about travelling with kids. It was an article about why children under a certain age shouldn’t be taken to different and new places on their holidays because they don’t really appreciate it.

According to the psychiatrist in the article, “Extensive travel is wasted on kids.” And I tend to agree.

To be totally honest I think kids want the same things when they travel away from home – a pool, a park, a playground & toys.

We took boys to Copenhagen for the weekend recently, the highlight of the trip for them was the Lego shop & the playground.

Of course this changes as they grow up. My elder son who will be 10 this year now reads up about the country we are due to visit before we leave, he wants to know about it’s history, it’s population and so on. But my younger 6 year old just wants to jump on the bed in the hotel room and get in the nearest pool.

I don’t blame them one bit. Just because I love museums it doesnt mean that they sre going to. 

The article continues to say that Dr. Oliver James told The Telegraph that “home-based holidays are what most children really want.” That children prefer to have stability and visit the same place each year rather than a new place each time.

I agree yet again. Rather than spend thousands on exotic holidays to far away destinations that we as adults want to see, why not invest in a holiday home that can be revisited each year to build and make memories. Or even visit the same loved location each year.

I am now at an age where the kids are much easier to travel with. So we are now slowly visiting a different European city each year as a family treat. Its more for my older son than my younger, as he is more eager to visit new cities. 

Its fun, not easy, but a two night trip is manageable. 

The kids love coming to Antalya each year, same home, same pool, same friends. But as they grow our trips will get more adventurous and hopefully they will gain more from them.

As the article says, “…all kids want is to go back to the same place year after year — although how children process place and adventure changes as they age….”

We have so much to look forward to travelling with kids, there’s no need at all to rush. We have all the time in the world.

Read the full article below –

http://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/family-vacations/kids-dont-like-traveling-to-new-places?xid=soc_socialflow_facebook_tl&utm_campaign=travelandleisure&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social

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Churchill 🎬 a movie review 🇬🇧

I have never been hugely interested in politics or wars for that matter. Ive always believed that your religious and political views are private and should be kept that way.

However I do love it when a movie comes along which gives you a more personal view of politicians or important historical heads of state. Movies that show us that these strong figureheads who fought wars and won battles also loved and had hearts.

The Movie –


Churchill is one such movie, which shows us the private side of the late great Winston Churchill.

Tensions mount for beleaguered British Prime Minister Winston Churchill as D-Day nears in June 1944. 

Fearful of repeating past mistakes, Churchill is reluctant to embark on the large-scale campaign that the entire war effort hinges upon. 

Clashing with his political opponents, the troubled leader receives unwavering support from his devoted wife, Clementine. 

With strength and shrewdness, she tries to prevent his physical, mental and spiritual collapse while inspiring him to achieve greatness.

Verdict –

I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. I was a little sceptical at first as it is a political movie. But I was plesantly suprised.

Not only did the movie show us how deeply affected Churchill was by his loss at Gallipoli, it showed us what an important role his wife Clementine played in his life.


The movie made me smile at time, extremely sad at times. It made me realise yet again how lucky we are to be living in a free country without war in our close proximity. And how terrible wars are.

A very educational and thoroughly watchable movie.  Brian Cox as Churchill and Miranda Richardson as Clementine are both fantastic. 

Grapefruit segments are the perfect breakfast & snack! 😋

I am in sunny climates as you all know! Today the weather is extra hot & humid! We have hit 45 degrees celsius! 

Breakfast and snacks throughout the day are predominantly made up of fruits. I tend to find in hotter climates the less sweet fruits are more refreshing, and grapefruits are on the top of my list! 

Although I love grapefruits they can get messy at times when trying to eat. Especially when you are in a rush and have kids to feed. 

Nature’s Finest have come up with a super duper time & mess saving invention! Pre prepared grapefruit segments! 

The Product –


The days of making a mess slicing and dicing your own fruit are long gone, as Nature’s Finest introduce a quick and easy way to bring breakfast to life. 

The UK’s no.1 potted fruit brand is tantalising taste buds across the country with the launch of new Grapefruit in juice. Packed full of naturally sweet segments, the white grapefruit is in juice and contains no added sugar. 

Available in Waitrose from June, the new addition is guaranteed to turn an ordinary breakfast into something extraordinary.

The 390g grapefruit pots are bursting full of naturally sweet and tangy flavours, perfect as a breakfast topping, whipped up to add a citrus twist to a smoothie or to be enjoyed as it is while sitting out in the sunshine.

Grapefruit is a fantastic source of vitamin C and is designed to strengthen the immune system and boost metabolism, Nature’s Finest Grapefruit a welcome addition for those looking to increase their daily dose of vitamins.

All Nature’s Finest fruits are picked and packed at the peak of ripeness, locking in the all-important vitamins, minerals and naturally sweet taste. Only packed in juice and no added sugar.

The new Nature’s Finest 390g Grapefruit in juice is available now in Waitrose with an RRP of £1.67.
Verdict-

I absolutely loved them!! They have all the yumminess and freshness of grapefruit without the mess! 


I added my segments to my homemade yogurt, and a sprinkle of oats for a fantastically refreshing breakfast treat.

Yummy! x

Midnight at the Pera Palace by Charles King 📚 a book review ❤️

I am writing to you from sunny Antalya! We just spent a wonderful 3 days in Istanbul, and are now at our final stop for the summer for sone much needed sun, sea and sand.

Whilst in Istanbul I came across this fantastic book I just had to read. I havent quite finished it yet but have read enough to tell you all about it.

The Book –


At midnight, December 31, 1925, citizens of the newly proclaimed Turkish Republic celebrated the New Year. For the first time ever, they had agreed to use a nationally unified calendar and clock.

Yet in Istanbul–an ancient crossroads and Turkey’s largest city–people were looking toward an uncertain future. Never purely Turkish, Istanbul was home to generations of Greeks, Armenians, and Jews, as well as Muslims. It welcomed White Russian nobles ousted by the Russian Revolution, Bolshevik assassins on the trail of the exiled Leon Trotsky, German professors, British diplomats, and American entrepreneurs–a multicultural panoply of performers and poets, do-gooders and ne’er-do-wells. 


During the Second World War, thousands of Jews fleeing occupied Europe found passage through Istanbul, some with the help of the future Pope John XXIII. At the Pera Palace, Istanbul’s most luxurious hotel, so many spies mingled in the lobby that the manager posted a sign asking them to relinquish their seats to paying guests.

In beguiling prose and rich character portraits, Charles King brings to life a remarkable era when a storied city stumbled into the modern world and reshaped the meaning of cosmopolitanism.

Verdict –

Pera Palace is one of my favourite hotels ever! Not only is it a beautifully amazing building set in the old part of Istanbul. It also has such a rich history I am not one bit suprised it has a book based around it.


Charles King has obviously researched the history of this amazing city very well. It is like looking back at Turkey’s history from the demise of the Ottoman empire through to the cosmopolitism it has reached today. After World War I Turkey went through immense changes, and became the Turkey it is today under the leadership of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. 

A good book to read to understand the changes Turkey has gone through to get to where it is today. 

Next time you are in Istanbul be sure to visit the Pera Palace, it’s like walking back in time. 

For the perfect cup of tea when travelling ❤️😋☕️

I am now in sunnier climates, millions of miles away from home, away from the school runs and rainy weather for a few weeks. 

Although I do love coffee, lately I have been craving the perfect cup of stong English tea with milk. 

When abroad its not always easy to get the right strength or colour to your cup of tea so I do normally take a big box of teabags along with me, which can prove tiresome on shorter trips. Boxes of tea are difficult to keep fresh once opened, and can take up space in small cases.

The English Tea shop has come up with the perfect solution! A handy compact selection of teas to pack in your case for that perfect cup of tea anywhere you go! It’s the size of a small book & super light so will slip right into your handbag.

The Product –


Within a span of few years, English Tea Shop teas have become the perfect partner of the tea drinkers across the globe. 

They work with only the finest Organic and Fairtrade farmers from all over the world to produce our special range of teas.

It’s own manufacturing facility in Sri Lanka allows it to rely upon age-old traditions that, for centuries, have been producing the best teas in the world. The harmonious blends and time honored healthy ingredients help the consumers with much needed good health with no compromise in excitement. The teas are handpicked and crafted to deliver the fullest burst of flavor to its customers. The fantastic feedback and the ratings it receives from the consumers are the major drives of the company’s success. 

Verdict –


Such a fantastic idea! I drink my tea with milk, and the English breakfast made the perfect cup of tea. Just like one I would have back home.

I cannot wait to try the other wonderful blends in the pack –

  • Detox tea
  • Calming tea
  • Green tea with honey & mint
  • Chocolate, Roobios & Vanilla 

English Tea Shop products are available on Amazon Uk, also in Harrods, WHSmith, Debenhams and other shops. Full details on their lovely website below –

http://www.etsteas.co.uk/where-we-are-sold

As it says on the box, 

“There’s no brew like home” ❤️😋

Falling by Jane Green 📚 a book review 🌞❤️

I am writing to you from sunny Turkey! It is officially the summer holidays and two days in I am enjoying a fantastic book poolside in the glorious sunshine!

It is a bit of a tradition of mine to save a new book by a favourite author for the holidays. So I actually bought this book a while ago but saved it especially for this vacation. 

The Book – 


From the Sunday Times number one bestselling author of Summer Secrets comes a novel about finding a home – and family – where you least expect them.

Eight years ago, Emma Montague left behind the strict confines of her upper-crust English life – and rather dull boyfriend – and moved to New York City, where she immediately found success in the world of finance. But her soulless, cut-throat, all-consuming job has only led to another life she didn’t want.

Answering an online ad, Emma finds a tiny beach cottage to rent in the small town of Westport, Connecticut. It needs work – lots of work. But it’s the perfect project to satisfy Emma’s passion for interior design and gardening, if her new landlord, Dominic, is agreeable to the small changes she yearns to make.

To Emma, Dominic is also something of a fixer-upper. A local handyman with a six-year-old son, he’s a world away from the men she should be interested in, but he’s comfortable in his own skin, confident, quiet and kind. Slowly, over a shared garden, time spent with his son and late-night conversations, Emma finds herself falling for Dominic.

From friends to lovers happens as naturally as the changing seasons. But laying down roots doesn’t come easily when two lives as different as theirs merge into one. And Emma will realize that the seeds of happiness must be nurtured and cherished to grow into something strong enough to shelter all their hopes and dreams . . .

Verdict –

Yet again Jane Green does not disappoint! A lovely read, her words flow so easily and by chapter 4 you already feel you know the characters as if they were living in your own neighbourhood.

Not up there with my favourite of Green’s books but entertaining all the same.

Available on Amazon & in all major bookshops now! 

Happy Summer reading x

The joy of growing fruit & vegetables in your own garden ❤️

It’s difficult to think anything but pleasant thoughts when eating a home grown tomato.” Lewis Grizzard (American writer)


I read this quote recently and completely agree. Growing your own fruits & vegetables has to be one of lifes most pleasurable things!

With Summer here and the weather heating up we are harvesting our own homegrown fruits, vegetables & herbs. Next Spring why don’t you all try to grow your own. You don’t need a garden, a balcony or even a window sill will work perfectly.


I have found the vegetables and herbs which are easiest to grow and maintain are mint, chives and tomatoes.

Mint grows very fast, all it needs is watering and some sunshine and they are off! Perfect to tear into salads, add a few leaves to boiling hot water for a refreshing fresh mint tea or add to tomato soup for an amazing taste.


Chives are perfect cut up into a fresh potato salad.

The joy of eating homegrown tomatoes is just amazing. I have found growing tomatoes to be much more successful when you plant tomato plants rather than seeds. Use tomato feed and with plenty of watering and sunshine you will have success.

Get the little ones involved and you will all have fun next Spring!

The Summer House by Jenny Hale 🌞 a book review 📚

Our countdown to the Summer has begun. Sports days are done, boys got their school reports last Friday. Its now the final week of fun and completion of the term. The boys are absolutely ready to relax, as are we.

So in the interest of preparing for some much needed relaxation by the sea, I chose a fantastically Summery book to share with you all today.

The Book –


Callie Weaver and best friend Olivia Dixon have finally done it: put their life savings into the beach house they admired through childhood summers, on the dazzling white sand of North Carolina’s Outer Banks. They’re going to buff the salt from its windows, paint its sun-bleached sidings, and open it as a bed and breakfast. 

Callie’s too busy to think about her love life, but when she catches the attention of local heartthrob Luke Sullivan, his blue eyes and easy smile make it hard to say no. He’s heir to his father’s property empire, and the papers say he’s just another playboy, but as they laugh in the ocean waves, Callie realizes there’s more to this man than money and good looks. 

Just when true happiness seems within reach, Callie and Olivia find a diary full of secrets… secrets that stretch across the island, and have the power to turn lives upside down. As Callie reads, she unravels a mystery that makes her heart drop through the floor. 

Will Callie and Luke be pulled apart by the storm it unleashes, or can true love save them? 

Verdict –

Around this time of the year, when the Summer holidays are only a few days away, I adore reading books set by the seaside. Not onlt do they help get me ready for the long lazy sunny days that lie ahead, they help me cope with the last few days of rushing around trying to get everything ready.

The Summer House did not dissappoint. Jenny Hale writes wonderfully and the story is set in the perfect Summer location.

Callie and Olivia are best friends and they have a plan to convert this beautiful beach house into a b&b. Boyfriends are really on her mind, but it’s always at times like this, when you arent looking, that love turns up on your doorstep.

A beautiful read which will transport you away to the beach, filled with love and relationship dilemmas.

I look forward to reading more by Jenny soon.

The Summer House is available to purchase now on Amazon uk. Published by Bookouture.

Frankie & Johnny ❤️ My all time favourite movie 🎬

There are some movies you watch and once is enough, but then a movie comes along that you watch, then watch again, and again.

Everytime you watch it you see something different, you learn another fact or see another viewpoint. 

I think the two major factors to a movie like this is a good storyline mixed with fantastic acting. 

I actually have a few movies like this. A few movies I can watch over and over again, without being bored. But this movie has always been that extra bit special.

The Movie –


When Johnny (Al Pacino) is released from prison following a forgery charge, he quickly lands a job as a short-order cook at a New York diner. 

Following a brief fling with waitress Cora (Kate Nelligan), Frankie develops an attraction for Cora’s friend and fellow waitress Frankie (Michelle Pfeiffer). 

While Frankie resists Johnny’s charms initially, she eventually relents when her best friend, Tim (Nathan Lane), persuades her to give Johnny a chance.

Verdict –

For me this is an amazing love story not to be missed. Al Pacino & Michelle Pfeiffer have such a fantastic on screen chemistry, it is breathetaking to watch.

The movie is about lonliness, finding love and the fear of losing love. 

It is almost like you are watching a documentary about life in New York. 


My favourite scene has got to be when Johnny takes Frankie to the flower market, its just magical! 

Its available on dvd now. 

A weekend in Copenhagen with the kids ❤️🇩🇰

For anyone who has seen the movie Danish Girl, you will know what I mean when I talk about the amazing scenery. 

The colourful high ceilinged buildings that line the beautiful canals, the costumes and the history. The Danish Girl was the true story of Lili Elbe, the world’s first receipients of sex change surgery. The movie was set and filmed in and around Copennhagen, amd ever since watching it I have wanted to visit this magical, theatrical city for myself.

Here are some amazing facts about Copenhagen –

– Copenhagen’s metropolitan area has a population of just over 2million people (comparitively London is estimated to be at 8.6million in 2017)

– The UN World Happiness Report has rated Danes as the happiest people on earth two years in a row.

– Danes have a special word “hygge” for that cozy feeling of togetherness. It means relaxing in great company.

– LEGO is Danish!

– 50% of Copenhageners commute to work every day on bicycle – come rain come shine.

– The Copenhagen harbour is clean enough to swim in!

– It is where the first ‘Joe & the Juice’ store opened up

Where we stayed –

As a family we love Radissons, so in Copenhagen it was the Radisson for us. We had a lovely pair of adjoining rooms at the Radisson Blu Scandinavia, which a short walk over a bridge from the main attractions.

What we saw –

  • The Tivoli Gardens – a famous amusement park and pleasure garden in Copenhagen, Denmark. The park opened on 15 August 1843 and is the second-oldest operating amusement park in the world. Its a wondeful place for adults to be kids again.

  • The National Museum of Denmark in Copenhagen – is Denmark’s largest museum of cultural history, comprising the histories of Danish and foreign cultures, alike. My boys spent a good 3hours exploring this fantastic space. Its very kid friendly & the coffee shop does these great huge sandwiches! Perfect for kids & lunch. It has exhibitions from the Stone Age, the Viking Age, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and Modern Danish History. 

  • Boat trip – A definate must to see the whole city. You can catch the boat all along the waterway. Its also a fantastic way to get a glimse of the infamous Little Mermaid from the sea.
  • Nyhavn – is a 17th-century waterfront, canal and entertainment district in Copenhagen. Stretching from Kongens Nytorv to the harbour front just south of the Royal Playhouse, it is lined by brightly coloured buildings. We sat by the water in one of the many lovely restaurants and just watched the world go by.


Where we ate –


  • Wagamamas- I know! Go all the way to Copenhagen and go to Wagamamas! But with kids sometimes whatever makes them happy works.
  • Nyhavn 17 – A great place to enjoy Herrings on a bed of fresh bread. Its delicious! Washed down with a cold beer.
  • Cows & Cocks – A chain of burger restaurants in the city. Chargrilled burgers o& ribs with homemade sauces in a trendy venue with booths & brick walls. 
  • Bagt – another chain of fantastic bakeries. Fresh Danish pasteries & great cappucinos! Beats hotel breakfasts everytime.


Top tip-

  • Do not get a taxi from the airport! Save money & time by getting the metro straight to the city! My boys loved sitting at the front of the train, there are no drivers so they lived the adventure! Getting tickets is super easy from the machines near the trains, a short walk from the airport arrivals. There are even stewards on hand who speak perfect English to help!

Enjoy Copenhagen! We loved it!  xxx