Saturday, 30 July 2011

Day trip to Amsterdam

For my birthday this year my parents gave me a day out in Amsterdam as a present!
The plan was I went to their house the evening before and sleep over since we had to get up just after 4am. I actually can't remember the details of flight times as I completely switched off and just went with the flow :)
All I know is that we were in Amsterdam in time for breakfast :)
Here is the double decker train we took to the city centre.
I know that usually I do go a bit overboard with photos but for some reason I hardly took any pictures of the day. Probably because the children weren't with me, it was nice not to think about taking pictures. So here are the few that I did take.
We walked to the more expensive/crafty side of Amsterdam. I wasn't allowed to take pics in this shot and I very naughtily snuck a few. The hasty, no flash pictures don't do this shop or it's products justice, it truly was fantastic! Do you see those frames, they had hessian in them and then earrings hung up inside. The bean bag in the corner was made from giant knitting needles and GORGEOUS wool. And those big vases were wrapped in wool. oh if only I had more freedom to take more pics.
Me looking very scruffy and not caring.
cool rubber chairs.
fussy blue shop
crate chairs with planters in the back
oooh and this shop I loved! It was all reclaimed furniture and wood from boats.

My Mom waiting for lunch.
Still waiting for lunch. I fully intended on taking a picture of my kroketten but I wolfed them down before I remembered :P
See what I mean about not many pics. Oh well, it was a fantastic day! We got back just after midnight. I drove home the next day with bags of yummy dutch goodies for the kids. hmmm

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Frog catching

We are enjoying going out for our nature walks. It is fun discovering new places. Once we get over Kiki's moaning about having tired legs and how she is starving and wants to go home...once she connects with her environment (usually takes about half an hour) it is blissful. Everyone goes off to explore, coming back to each other to compare what they have found or heard, and they all just relax and get stuck in.
The boys admiring the foxgloves.

watch out for the nettles!

The kids naturally gravitate towards water. I pulled them back up to go for a walk first because I know that when they are wet and covered in mud it just won't happen.

They found a rope swing

Brandon is by the water on the left of the picture

Peeling bark
When we went back down to the water the children discovered lots of teeny tiny frogs.

Every time they lifted a rock they found a frog.

Not only were the rocks a great size for splashing, the valley was the best for echos! We yodeled for a long time :)

The kids insisted of taking some frogs home to put in the pond. I said that they could each take a few. Once we got home I found that Kiki had kept her's safe by putting them in the car door handle and getting them out was really tricky! I hope that I got them all as I am not exactly sure how many she had to start with. - this is one of the many reasons that I really have to invest in a car air freshener!

Monday, 18 July 2011

under a bridge

Another warm day so another trip to the river. It was so lovely in the sun but the children chose a shady spot to play under the bridge :PAlthough it was a warm day that water was cold! I couldn't believe that the kids decided to sit in it up to their necks ...brrrrrr

building up the dam to make the 'swimming' area even deeper.
Lunch and warm up time
I wish you could see how much my eldest eats and yet he stays so skinny! My Dad was the same, apparently he has until he hits 30 to eat as much as wants before he gets a belly :)
Rivers are never relaxing for parents. We have to give the kids their freedom while watching them like a hawk. After that large boulder on the left side of the picture, the river drops. The kids know not to go near it, but at the moment I am having so many nightmares about them falling down holes or chopping off their fingers that I am slightly paranoid - I try not to let it show though :)

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Exploring the countryside

Now that Kiki is old enough to walk without tantruming :P we have decided to start properly exploring the countryside near our house.
veering off the path to crunch on the dead heather.
A skeleton!
Tiny crystals made the path shine as if someone had sprinkled glitter on it.
Over the the top, and what a view!

Kiki isn't pictured here...

She was way off the path, holding on to a rock because she was scared that she was going to be blown down the hill :)
The three older ones walking ahead back down the hill
but not to be left out, Kiki charging after them

At the bottom of the hill we found a river, a perfect spot to eat our lunch
and go for a paddle

off they went to explore under the bridge
A good day out, one which the kids want to repeat :) I just have to remember to pack lots of cake to help get them to the top.