Amiens zoo

One of the highlights of our trip to France in the summer was a visit to Amiens Zoo.  Entrance was around €6 per adult and free for the Bear.

It was a weekday, scorching hot at 37 degrees.  It isn’t a massive zoo, but there was plenty to see. No cafes, just vending machines for snacks and drinks so do go prepared.  We spotted some picnic tables which should come in handy, weather permitting.



Golders Hill Park

We met our friends from Wholefood Harmony and their children for a play date at Golders Hill Park in Hampstead a few weeks ago.  The Bear and J are only weeks apart in age and my little one absolutely adores her young friend.  After am initial muddle up over the meeting point, we made a beeline for the butterfly house.


It was very humid in the butterfly house, which didn’t bode well for those with naturally frizzy hair!

There was a lovely mini-zoo in the park – with owls, birds, deers to name a few…but the kids were more interested in the playground and sandpit (no photos, there were lots of kids around and I didn’t feel comfortable snapping shots).


A quick photo of the Golders Hill Girl.


The Bear had a blast with her friend.  Golders Hill Park is just wonderful for kids and families – entrance to the butterfly farm and mini zoo is free and there are lovely walks to be had.  We hope to return soon for another play date,


The Dinosaur and Science museums

One fine Sunday morning, we woke up and asked ourselves ‘what shall we do today’ (loosely translated, let’s not bother with dishes, laundry, cooking).

Early Sunday is a good time of the week to drive into London. Most on-street parking is free.  We drove to South Kensington and found a spot fairly close to the Natural History Museum. It was my first time there, as it was the Bear’s.

The queue didn’t look to bad. It was a beautiful morning and we soaked up the sun and people watched.


After 10 minutes, we found ourselves at the front of the queue, and made a beeline into the museum.  The only dinosaur the Bear has seen is on telly, being George’s toy one in Peppa Pig! We were concerned that she might be frightened, but she took it all in her stride.


She wasn’t overly impressed by the turtle.


But this one left us all in awe….


The museum became really crowded, which upset the Bear.  Time for a quick pick-me-up before the next museum.


One of my friends had visited the National Science Museum with her boys recently and recommended the basement where the kids’ play area is.



After an hour of play, we convinced the Bear there were more fun things to see in the main museum.




We bought a fairy wand for the Bear from the gift shop before calling it a day.  Well worth a visit to both museums.


A week in France

We have a long standing love affair with France and try to spend our holidays there.

Our Easter trip was far too short, therefore another beckoned soon after.  Amidst the chaos at the Eurotunnel at the end of June, we were lucky to have a stress-free journey to Calais and back.  We were extremely blessed with good weather, for the day time temperature averaged between 20 and 30 degrees during our stay.

Soaring temperatures meant one thing – beach time! The Bear was thrilled that she could finally ‘go holiday, build sandcastles’.

We had breakfast and dinner at the apartment daily.  Eating out with the Bear can be challenging.  She wolves down her food and expects us to leave right away.  Many half eaten meals have been left behind in order to prevent toddler meltdowns! We did enjoy some lovely desserts, but kept coming back for more strawberry tarts.

We saw some stunning sunsets…


…clouds which reminded us of cotton wool,,.



We also made a quick visit to Brugge so that the Bear can see some ‘horsies’ which she spotted back in Easter.

If you think the Bear is gorgeous, here’s a shot of her mid-tantrum, with Carre-Four dinosaur next to her.


The Bear’s been asking everyday when we’re going on ‘holiday, build sandcastles’…

Bluebell Railway, East Sussex

The Bear is a fan of choo-choo trains and has been asking for weeks if we could take her to see Thomas the Tank Engine.  Drayton Manor is a good drive away, so it wasn’t going to be a day trip.  We read about the Bluebell Railway on one of the guidebooks we have at home which was in East Sussex.  Definitely do-able as a day trip and we’ve been thinking of heading down to the coast as well.

The M25 was a car park which tripled the travel time, unfortunately.  We ended up driving on country roads and found ourselves in Surrey Hills.  The views were stunning which prompted us to stop for a cuppa when we spotted a cafe en route.

The Bear brought home a teddy from nursery for the weekend.


The break was much needed.  The Bear had a run-around whilst we enjoyed our drinks and scones.

We decided to make tracks but stopped shortly thereafter when we spotted a sign for a farm shop.  I had wanted to stock up on some free-range eggs.  They even had a little bee garden.


After what seemed like an eternity, we arrived at the Bluebell Railway in time for the last steam train ride for the day.  It was free for the Bear, and £17 per adult for a return journey to East Grinstead and back.  The station was really quaint, and staff dressed in proper ye olde uniforms.  We found an empty compartment on the train and made ourselves right at home.  The return journey took just under 2 hours and we passed through very pretty countryside.  The Bear spotted many cows, pigs, horses, birds and even deers.


The dining room on the train was all set for another wedding party.


What a fabulous trip.  The Bear thoroughly enjoyed herself as did we.


Peach cobbler

We’re a big fan of baked fruit desserts.  When I stumbled upon this recipe for a peach cobbler, I knew it was a keeper.  A stroke of luck, ripe peaches were on sale in the shops. It was as if the dessert stars were alligned!

It is imperative that you place the baking dish on top of a lined tray to catch spillage.  And there will be some, depending on the shape of your baking tray!

We love our cream, but didn’t see the necessity to drizzle some over the cobbler.  The fruits were sweet with a touch of tang from the lemon juice.  Just delicious on their own.