Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Snow and Christmas Fayre


A few photos from the past week. Jacob got a few lego kits for his birthday so I've included a photo once he had built them all. There's also one of them in there face paints from the Christmas Fayre plus a glitter tattoo that Abi got. Finally there one of them in the snow. They had great fun this morning out there!

Grandma Melrose's visit - Holland

Sorry this is a bit late but I've been very busy with the school Christmas Fayre. It is now over so I'll add what we've been up to over the last 3 weeks. Grandma Melrose (Allen's mum) visited us for Jacob's birthday. We had a lovely time with her. We visited Monte Verde, a local park that has different gardens from around the world. It has a warm indoor tropical area with loads of birds flying about. Abi and I collected some brilliantly coloured feathers. Not sure what we're going to do with them but they are impressive. I liked the Chinese and Japanese gardens best. There was bumper cars, a big bouncy thing, a violent pirate ship ride and a high swing thing. There were also 2 white tigers in a large enclosure. When the children ran along the side of the enclosure the tigers bounded after them. Jacob and Abi had great fun making them run! I've included a few photos from the day out.

Allen had a day in Maastricht with his mum. I dropped them at the station and they had a relaxing day. We also walked into our closest town, Sittard to have coffee. Marion enjoyed the garden centre too. She wanted to buy lots of things but was constrained due to flying with Ryanair with only hand luggage! Marion and I did a long walk to a cafe at Puth and luckily made it home without geting lost!

Jacob's birthday party went well at an indoor playplace in Belgium. Not many of his class made it but he still had a great time. It lasted an hour longer than we thought for which was fine as the weather outside was horrid - very wet.

Since Marion went home we were busy with the school Christmas Fayre. Now it's over and we have snow so I had 2 very happy children this morning playing out before school. The bus was 45 mins late so they had even more fun rolling around in the snow at the bus stop. At least they were well dressed in their ski gear. I've got to brave it and walk to the local shops so my ski trousers will be getting an outting too!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Jacob's 8th Birthday

Jacob was up nice and early to start the celebrations for his 8th birthday! I went downstairs with him and we starting making brownies to take into school for his class. Luckily there are only 13 of them in his class so one batch was plenty. We actually made a Jamie Oliver recipe and it was yummy! We then took coffee up to Allen and Jacob opened his presents in our bed. His favourite was a Nerf gun, his lego book was a close second and he's busy with his new Mario game on the Wii as I'm typing this as well as playing with his balloons! Jacob went in late to school as he had an eye appointment at the hopsital. The regular opticians don't see children here so you have to go through the hospital. All was fine and he's got to go back in 4 months, Abi had gone on the bus, as usual, but at 9.30 I had a call from one of the other mum's to say they had been involved in a crash, all were fine. We then drove past the crash and it looked bad so I was glad I knew they were all fine before driving past. It hadn't been the buses fault it had had to drive off the road due to a car veering onto his side of the road. When the bus drove off the road it then hit a tree. The Head Teacher did phone us but an hour and a half after the crash happened - which I thought was a bit late.

So excitement on Jacob's big day, we dropped him at school together with his brownies and he came off the bus very happy. Off to KFC for tea, his choice. His birthday party is on Saturday. His best pals Landon and Logan are coming so he's very pleased. I will post photos from that at the weekend. So the photos here are from this morning. Grandma kindly made the number 8 cake, I've got to do a skull one for the weekend! Happy Birthday Jacob xxx


Sunday, October 31, 2010

Trick and Treating!


Happy Halloween!! Jacob and Abi have throughly enjoyed their weekend of trick and treating. Friday we were on Schinnen with Jacob's friend's Landon and Logan. I've borrowed a photo off Michelle to add to this blog. Today, actual Halloween, we cycled into Sittard to have lunch in the square as it was lovely weather. While having a coffee a Witch came up to Jacob and Abi and invited them to a Witches workshop. So off we went and learnt how to dance like a witch, cackle like one too and then they made potions. I tried one - very sweet! They had a lovely time but unfortunately I forgot the camera. Tonight we're just back from going around the neighbours houses. I have included a photo outside the house.

School's back tomorrow - hooray, Allen and I have the day together.


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Grandma, Matthew and Amy's visit.


Before we get to Grandma's visit Jacob and Abi had book week at school. They did various activities during the week. Allen went in and read to both classes which went down well with Jacob and Abi. On the Friday they got to dress up as a character from their favourite book. Jacob chose Harry Potter and Abi chose Winnie the Witch. Luckily Allen was in the UK for half of the week and managed to find a Harry Potter cloak in Toys R Us, for Abi we just put together an outfit but did buy her a broom in Sittard. I've included a photo of them both while they paraded through the school to the gym. They both looked great.

Mum, Matthew and Amy arrived on Sunday. Abi and I went to get them from Genk train station. They'd had a good trip across although Steve had had to drive them into London due to a mix up in the train timetable from Harlington. They settled in, playing and exploring around the house. On the Monday we had borrowed bikes for everyone so we cycled into our nearest town, Sittard. We went to a good cafe called Bagels and Beans. I've included a photo of the cousins sitting on the soft bagel! We had a look around the shops although lots were closed as it's half day closing for many of the shops here on a Monday, they also close Wednesday afternoon. We cycled home and, after lunch, went on a walk. We walked up to the local ice cream parlour, unfortunately it too was shut. So we did a long walk following wooden owls - they are carved into tree stumps and point the way to walk. It took us an hour and a half as I'd not done it before and didn't know how long it would take! We enjoyed it all the same and it was lucky I had kit kats in my bag to help the walkers along. On the Tuesday we decorated the house for Halloween and made Halloween cookies to decorate later. Allen then took the kids onto base to go swimming as they had an inflatable in the pool followed by hot dogs to eat afterwards. Mum and I walked into Munstergeleen and looked around the little shops that are there - very gifty but nice. Wednesday we got the train to Maastrict. It's on the river Maas, hence it's name, and is a lovely old city. We just wandered around, stopping for coffee, shopping, lunch and ice cream. There is definitely more to do there so we will visit again. Jacob and I took them back to Genk station on Thursday for their trip back. They managed to miss getting off at Brussels but still got back in time for the Eurostar connection! It was great seeing all of them and hope Dad, Katharine and Steve will visit next time. I've included a photo from Maastrict too.

Michelle came and picked us up on Thursday mid morning and took us onto base where we had lunch and went bowling. They then brought us back and stayed playing for a few hours. She has Landon and Logan who are in Jacob's year and also go to cubs with us. Abi baked more biscuits for Halloween. On Friday we got ready for Trunk and Treating also on the American base. Abi went as Tinkerbell, Jacob an army man, Allen a vampire and me a cat. We had a good time with the kids ending up with way too much 'candy'. We also went bowling again as it was free. I forgot the camera but will remember to take some photos on the 31st! You may notice that Abi is holding a bear in each photo. We have had Barnaby bear for half term. She has to take Barnaby with her and write about what he does. So Barnaby has been everywhere with us and Abi has written loads!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Valkenburg and Gangelt


I helped out on Jacob's year group trip to the Valkenburg mine. Brunssum is an old mining town as is a lot of the local area. Valkenburg also has a castle so I'll have to take Allen there so we can explore a bit more. The mining was coal. I learnt a lot and it was all the more interesting due to the Chilean mine rescue happening at the same time. An old miner took us on the tour and we saw the mine trains, drills, seams, conveyor belts that conveyed coal, rocks and the miners themselves. He let the kids have a go with a pnuematic drill (no health and safety concerns which was nice and refreshing!), they all piled onto a train and they also had a go on the mining bikes. I've put a photo in of Jacob driving the train and one of him in the tunnels. The kids thought it was great although some of the Americans were a bit dramatic about not being able to breath etc.

We had a busy Saturday of gymnastics, selling cub scout popcorn, Ikea shopping and then general shopping too plus breakfast and lunch out. Today, Sunday, we went to Gangelt wildlife park in Germany. It was great. The best bit for Jacob and Abi was feeding the animals. I've included a photo of feeding the deer. They liked the play park too. As you can see from their clothing it was a chilly autumn day. We may end up getting a season pass as I think they would happily visit here again and again and it will look very different in each season.

Allen's off to the UK tomorrow for a few days. My Mum, Nephew and Niece arrive for half term in a week so we're hoping to do more exploring with them. J&A have Wednesday off so we're going to try either an indoor swimming centre or an indoor play place. House is being repainted tomorrow, hoping it won't be too much of a mess!


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Fashion Show


Allen had a nice week in Spain while we were as busy as normal here. I did 2 long walks with one of the neighbours and then a long cycle. I also got my haircut. Jacob's year group all did a fashion show. He wore his Beaver outfit and looked very good and also different to everyone else. Jacob read really well too and I was very proud of him. I have put a photo in of him and his friend Jonathan. I then stayed at school and helped in Abi's class. She is very different at school, still a tad bossy but very good. We went swimming after school on Base. This was our first trip to the base pool. I didn't have to go in as one of the other mum's did. It felt pretty cold to me but Jacob and Abi had a lovely time. We were meant to be going to Trafalgar Night but, due to Allen's trip, we cancelled. We wouldn't have got to it in time as Allen didn't get back to the house until 7pm.

Abi had gymnastics this morning, she loved it and we're off to cycle into Sittard for an early tea with Beccie, Mark and Amy.


Cub camp and apples!


Had another busy week, this post is really the previous week. Jacob took part in his first cub camp.We all went and helped put up his tent, well Abi didn't help at all as there was a play area to amuse her. Allen stayed with Jacob so Abi and I went home and enjoyed Chinese and a Barbie movie. I was woken by the phone at 7.50am with Allen on the end asking to be picked up! It had rained all night and their shoes were soaked as they had left them outside! Nothing else was wet and it had only rained while they had been in the tent. They had had a cooked breakfast too. We left the tent up as Jacob could camp another night if he wanted and I took them both home for showers. Jacob then had a birthday party to go to on the American base. A boy in his class called Landon was turning 8. Landon has a twin brother called Logan and Jacob plays with both of them. Landon's mum meet us at the gate and we then went to the bowling party. It was good fun and Abi was allowed to join in. We spent 2 and a half hours there after which Jacob was knackered and didn't want to go camping again! So Allen and I went and took the tent down while the kids watched a movie with a neighbour. The tent was still wet so we put it in the garage. It dried the next day as it was lovely weather.

During the week I went on a class trip with Abi's year group. We went to an appple and pear farm on the German side. There was a bit of a language problem but it was still good fun and we all learnt a lot. We got to pick a few apples and eat them and I had a tummy ache at the end as the ones I picked weren't ripe! After the trip I went to one of the British ladies' house for lunch. She'd done a veggie spread and it was very tasty. I've put in a photo from the camping and one from the apple trip.

This coming week Jacob is doing a fashion show at school and Allen's off to Spain for work.


Saturday, October 2, 2010

Grandma's 70th Birthday


This is being posted a little late, sorry. We've had a hectic week since coming back from the UK so this is the first evening I've had to post. Last weekend we went back to the UK for my Mum's 70th birthday. We decided to leave early on Saturday morning and had booked the Chunnel. It all worked perfectly and we even got on the train before our booking. The M25 was clear, for once, and we managed a stop at Asda as we were early. Had lunch with mum and dad and then Jacob and Abi went swimming with their cousins and Grandma so me and Allen could go and see Ali and her new arrival Teddy. I cuddled Teddy for 2 hours and he slept the whole time. He was lovely. It was good to catch up with Ali and Jeremy without distractions. I've included a photo of me and Teddy. We got back to mum's in time to put J&A to bed and to eat a yummy Indian meal - haven't had Indian since being in Holland however we have got a great Chinese take out in our village. For mum's celebration we had a brunch at the bungalow. All the local family came so it was a busy house with loads of food. It was good to see everyone. I've included a photo of Mum, Jacob and Abi with the present they got her. We went back on the Chunnel and managed to get on an hour before we were meant to so were back home by 10.15pm. A good weekend even though we were only back for 24 hours. Stocked up on things we were missing from home, hula hoops, weetabix, maple syrup plus quite a bit more!

Since geting back it's been busy and I'll post that next ......

Saturday, September 18, 2010



The children had Friday off school so Allen took that day off too and we went to Efteling Theme Park. It's about and hour and 15mins from here - if you don't get lost! We have an in built GPS, it gives a bit too much warning so we turned too quickly off the motorway and then couldn't u turn for 7 miles. Got a 2 day pass with one night at the park's hotel. The actual park was nicely spread out. There was easily enough in it for a 2 day trip. Abi was too small for the main roller coasters so I had a good excuse not to ride them! I don't know what has happened to me I now feel sick on most rides! The only one that was OK was the water ride. I've put in a photo from that one plus a few from the hotel. We had a themed suite in the hotel which was only a 5 min walk into the main park. The hotel was much better than the Paris Disneyland one, very child friendly. In our room there was a present when they got there, sweets on check in, lollies, candy canes, marshmallows and a colouring set all in the room too. It had bunk beds for them and a curtained off area for the TV, a proper pod coffee maker. The food was excellent too with entertainment for the kids so we had a peaceful time. Expensive but worth it.

Helped out in Abi's class this week, off to see Jacob's teacher on Tuesday. Back to the UK next weekend for mum's 70th birthday. Looking forward to doing some shopping and seeing the family. Jacob's signed up for cub scouts, he's in the wolf den. I'll probably be helping out.


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Bokrijk Park


The week flew past. I stayed in a couple of days to try and sort the house a bit more. Getting our big sideboard delivered tomorrow so at least I can put away all of the stuff out in the lounge/diner at present. I did cycle into Sittard and met some British ladies for lunch. It was good to meet other people and have seen a few of them out and about since. Also had the back to school night. It was nice to meet the teachers but I still want to talk to Jacob's teacher more so we're going to ask for an extra appointment with her. Helping out in Abi's class again this coming week. Finally handed in all my teaching paperwork. Sounds like they need someone immediately so I could be in Reception pretty soon. Am going to go and help in there this week too.

When Allen got back from work on Friday we all cycled into Sittard, about 4 km, and had tea. An easy cycle so we'll do that quite a bit. There are loads of places to eat on the town square although we need to be careful which beer we drink as some of it is quite strong and you can be stopped on your bike as well as your car out here!

Abi went to her first gymnastics class on Saturday. Lots of British speakers in her group plus one girl from her class at school so that's good. Signing up Jacob for cub scouts tomorrow (Monday). After the gymnastics class we went to a park in Belgium. It's a huge place with a museum too but we just went to the outdoor park as it was free and the sun was shining. It was huge. They loved it all but the large slides were a favourite. I've put in a few photos from the afternoon.

Went on base for a Battle Of Britain church service. The children went and did a Sunday school thing and then we met them for a lovely lunch.

The kids have Friday off so looking forward to a day out.
Hope all is well


Sunday, September 5, 2010

3 Country maze and Jacob's first party.


Our first Saturday out and we went to a local maze from where you can see Holland, Belgium and Germany. I've put in a photo showing the 3 flags and the 3 countries. We had fun in the maze, it was confusing and it took us an hour. Once we got to the centre the information said it should take between 30 to 40 mins! There were water bits to get through, I was the only one who didn't get soaked! - they turn off now and then so I was just lucky. Once out of the maze there was a great play area and a bar so Allen and I sat enjoying an ice cold Dutch beer in the sun reading our books while Jacob and Abi played. There was a huge tower that you could walk up and view all of the countries but we were knackered after an hour in the maze so we'll do that one another day! So there's a photo of me and the kids on one of the bridges in the maze and one of them at the end.

Today Allen flew back to the UK, he had to go via military transport so that was an hour in MT (military transport) to a bus pick up point. A 3 and a half hour bus ride to a military airport in Germany, an hour flight to Birmingham. He then picked up a hire car and is off to Stanford for his 6 weeks follow up appointment for his knee op. The military are supposedely saving money sending him this way, they pay for his food each day and hotels. If he'd just flown on Monday and returned the same day, using a cheap airline, surely it would be cheaper? The military flight only returns on Wednesday so he's then stuck until then. Silly if you ask me, I reckon I could save the military money better than this idea. Anyway it's lucky Allen is back as we needed a few British items - weetabix, ritz crackers, rubbishy magazines and some cards! I'm sure I could get most of those things here, it's just finding them.

Jacob went to his first class birthday party today. A Norwegian girl whose family all spoke very good English. It was at an indoor playplace in Germany about 20 miles away. I took Abi as Allen wasn't around. It was good fun. I've included a few photos from the party.

Filled in my 50 page application forms for doing supply at the International school, lots were military ones. Hoping I will be cleared at some point to work/help! I went in on Friday and helped Abi's class make fruit kebabs. Her teacher's very good, strict but good. Hoping I can help out regulary in both their classes once my clearances are through.

Anyway need to eat so I hope all is well with everyone.


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Arrival in The Netherlands


We are finally here and have the internet. Got a Dutch dongle at present as they can't properly connect us for a month so no phone number yet, well I have got a Dutch sim card, trouble is it turns everything dutch on the phone so now I don't understand a thing! Really need to learn the language as I don't want to spend the next 3 years feeling stupid every time we go out. People can speak English but they choose not to until we really haven't got a clue and then they feel sorry for us! Jacob and Abi are doing German at school so I think Allen and I are going to do that and learn a few main Dutch phrases too. We have been to the library and got some cd's out.

The house is very Dutch, box like, 4 bed but small. Lovely small garden as I am not a gardener this does not bother me! The trampoline just squeezes in which is fine. Haven't got enough storage for all our stuff or perhaps we have too much stuff! Off to the Kringleloop today - a second hand bargain shop that has everything from stretchers to clothes. Taking Allen for his first time and I'm sure we'll come back with some weird things.

Driving is strange too they have a law that means you give way to people pulling out from your side of the street, this is only on small roads, also at roundabouts everyone else has right of way, again this is only on small roads. Have got to read their highway code as I've already had 3 near misses.

Have managed to get a bank account, ID card, driving license and ration card. Pretty good going as it takes some people at least a month and we did it in less than a week. Can't register the car for a month though so it'll be tight on the insurance. That cost is 3 times higher out here - they must expect us to crash!

School has gone down brilliantly. Abi cried on Sunday as she had to have the day at home and NOT school! Abi's in with a Dutch teacher and Jacob's is Canadian. They are in IY3 and IY4 respectively. Abi's teacher thinks she's wonderful and I haven't heard from Jacob's teacher yet! He got some maths homework that he could have done when he was 5 so I'm hoping it'll get a bit harder or else I'm going to have a bored little boy on my hands. He is impressed that he is allowed to free read and we are well into the first Harry Potter, he's loving it. Abi has moved up 2 levels from what she was on in the Falklands and is impressed with that. I'm going in to help on Friday, making fruit kebobs (can you tell by my the spelling it's a bit American!). They also have recess. The Brits are in the minority here, very American. There's a big American base near us but I haven't been on it yet. Haven't checked out the area much as it's been raining most of the time since we got here! I am also trying to unpack. The sun is out now though so I need to get out. Have got to get our bikes adjusted as, by law, you have to all have back mud guards, reflectors and bells. Taking the kids down to the loacl bike shop to get it all sorted, there's one down the road from us.

I've included a photo of the house, we're joined to the neighbours by the garage, one of them across from the house - you can see all the fields, this is also the view I have while I'm typing this! The other is of them biking down our street - very safe. So I think we'll enjoy it here, bit too much dog poo though, too many dogs really! The neighbours all seem very nice. There are about 12 British families although my neighbour is German married to a Brit. She hates kids but seems nice!

Hoping we'll get lots of visitors

Rachael xx

Friday, August 20, 2010

And we're off!

Yes, it's come round at last and we're off to Holland. Am happy as I finally got to speak to the Head of the school and the children are booked in for Monday! I spoke to the secretary first who told me we were to register, in person, today - Friday. Bit difficult as we're packing today. Anyway we have an appointment Monday morning.

So over the last few week I turned 39 and had a lovely day being pampered and then a BBQ with friends and family. We've bought loads of furniture either on ebay or in Ikea. Hoping we've got enough to fill a house. My niece, Amy, turned 9 and we had a family party at Mum and Dad's. It was nice seeing all the cousins together playing silly games. Everyone sulked except Abi who was an extremely good girl - I think she was coming down with the flu! Jacob was ill for about a week with something and now Abi has the same but a watered down version.

We also managed to catch up with friends from the Falklands, we saw the Preston's, the Foster-Jones's and the Morrison's. All of who have children of the relevant ages. Today Sarah, Thomas and Finlay and coming down to see us so I can get the kids out of the house while everything is packed away. Unfortunately we didn't manage to do another trip to Scotland. We had wanted to get up to Kinloss but just ran out of time. The other main thing was our car purchase - a Skoda Superb. Allen, Jacob and me went down to Brighton to pick it up. It's great, 6 gears, fast and spacious. Allen can't drive it for another week so it's all mine - don't even mind that I can't drink when we go out it's that good to drive!

Got to do a bit more cleaning today and then it's 3 nights in a variety of hotels until we march in on Monday. Will post photos of the new house once we're online. New address is:
9 Houtsnijdersstraat, 6151 DX, Munstergeleen, The Netherlands.

Have put up some photos of Amy's party.

Hope the summer is going well


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Friends and Lego


It's been nearly 2 weeks since Allen had his knee operation and all is going very well. He's nearly off his one crutch and the wound is dressing free and looking good. After only a week we all went and stayed with the Knights. Jacob and Abi were so excited and rushed off straight away. We didn't see them for a good hour. It was a relaxing 2 days, you can't always say that with children! Abi and Emma carried on as if they'd never been apart and Jacob loved the creative games Henry came up with, and Charlotte fitted in with both groups. Shrivenham was a very green place, having seen it I wouldn't mind going there.

Before that I fitted in a 2 night camping trip with the kids plus Mum and Dad. We only went 5 miles down the road in case Allen needed us. We all had a fun time although Grandad Holwell may have other views on it! I forgot the camera but Grandad did take some pictures. I had Abi in with me one night and Jacob the next. Lovely cuddles from both of them!

Jacob was a very lucky boy when we returned and the Lego Death Star that his Grandma Melrose bought for him arrived. It has taken him 2weeks to build it. It is for 14+ so he's done extremely well with minimal help from Allen and I. Now however we're having to play Star Wars with it! Jacob also got his SATs results for year 2 back and he did brilliantly, above average for his age group.

We have bought a new car, just waiting for it to arrive. We ended up with a Skoda Superb. We wanted an estate but neither of us realised you'd have to order one 6 months ahead! Should have it 2nd week in August so we're still hiring at the moment.

So, our Falklands' stuff arrives tomorrow and the assessor comes to see about our boxes going off to Holland. I'm off to Uncle John's funeral on Thursday with Dad, then it's a major Ikea trip on Friday. We've also caught up with friends this last week including Jacob's God parents Charlie and Steve and Ali who's 9 months pregnant and looking good. Seeing Ruth, another Uni friend, this weekend in Birmingham - shopping is on the cards I think!

Hope all is well

Thursday, July 15, 2010



We are recently returned from a week away visiting our Scottish relatives. While we were there it was our nephew, Cameron's, 16th birthday. Jacob and Abi love both of their Scottish cousins so everyone had a great time up North. We celebrated Cameron's birthday twice, once at a local restaurant and then a BBQ on his actual birthday. I've included one of him with his cake and his fan club! There's also one of Allen and I in Skoda hats. I have to say both Cameron and Finn were brilliant with our two and it always makes our visits enjoyable for all. Abi wanted a photo put in of her in a witches hat, Marion's slipper socks dancing with a toy fishing rod! Marion had the children for a day so Allen and I could go up to Dundee to check on out property. I really miss Dundee, not sure Allen thinks the same of the place but he did go to University in Edinburgh I suppose! Our property was fine, a few things need doing but we expected that. Met the couple renting it and they seem nice if young - or am I just old now!?

At the weekend my brother-in-law, Stuart, had all of the children so Allen, Louise, Marion and myself could have a night in a hotel near Newcastle. It was such a relaxing night and next morning too. They all appeared by lunch so we were busy with walks and swimming. We were at the hotel for Marion's 65th Birthday. All of her sister's had come up too so it was great catching up. Jacob and Abi loved seeing all of their Great Aunties so I hope all of these Aunties come and visit us in Holland. The food and chat were both excellent and everyone enjoyed their weekend.

So we got our posting notice and we're off to Brunssum to start on the 23rd August. School begins then. A bit earlier than we thought for, our stuff is still not back from the Falklands so we'll leave it in the boxes ready to go to Holland! Allen's in hospital today for his knee op, off to see him later. My mum and dad are having J&A for the night so Marion and I can go and see Allen later and then pick him up tomorrow.

Will post a photo of him and his knee!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Hastings Haven.


We are just back from 4 nights at a Haven Caravan Park. Jacob and Abi thought it was the best place ever. Allen decided it was too common and I just enjoyed it for what it was. Our Deluxe caravan wasn't bad. 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms a lounge, dining room and kitchen area. Fridge, freezer and microwave, decently kitted out. We didn't take towels so had to hire some as they weren't included! The pool area was the kids favourite closely followed by the arcade games. They both came back with hideous china things that they love. There were lots of activities on offer for the children. We did the swimming lessons, archery, inflatables, blow up quad movers, wake and shake, an alphabet hunt and a cake decorating session. I've included a variety of photos from the week. On the last night there was an awards ceremony, they both got a certificate and badge for joining in 10 activities. Abi managed to get 2 more, one for the best decorated cake and the other for the best Bear of the Week - they were split into 2 teams, Bears and Tigers. She managed this by disowning her parents and befriending all of the funsters - ie the people who run the activities. I'm glad Abi missed the announcement about auditions for the Stars in Your Eyes evening and we managed to get them out of the Live Lounge before it all kicked off! Anyway we had a relaxing week with lots going on. Managed to get home even with lots of disruption on the railways. Off up to Scotland next week, hope the weather holds.