A Holiday to Remember

Hello again! Over two weeks since my last post – the longest gap since I started blogging – but we have just come back from our two week summer holiday in Sweden. We went to an island called Gotland, just off the east coast, where I spent pretty much every summer from the age of 0 to 12.¬† It was just as beautiful as I remembered and there’s something magical about seeing your kids running along the same beach and jumping in the same waves you did as a child.

Apart from allowing the children to play on the iPads during the long car journeys and a bit of Instagramming for me, we had a fairly screen free holiday. I decided not to blog while we were away, partly because of the rather patchy wi-fi and also I needed a proper break from it. Over the past couple of months my heart has not really been it, and I was debating whether or not to give the blog up. Now that we’re back I feel more motivated to carry on and I think that when school starts up again I will hopefully have a bit of time to actually write some of those posts lurking in the back of my head.

But first, here is a quick summary of our holiday:

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{On board the boat from Harwich to Esbjerg in Denmark. Unfortunately this is the last summer the boat is running so next year we will have to figure another way of getting to Sweden.}

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{Crossing the famous bridge from Denmark over to Sweden. Luckily there were no dead bodies and the weather was glorious.}

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{After more than 48 hours of traveling by car and (two) boats we made it onto the Swedish island of Gotland and arrived at the cabin where we were staying.}

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{Much of our time was spent on the lovely sandy beaches that stretch for miles around the island.}

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{Jumping in the waves with my boys}

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{Clemmie didn’t like going in the sea but she was very happy playing on the beach.}

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{Casper is very proud of his sandcastle.}

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{We were really lucky with the weather and it was warm enough in the evenings to go on the beach and see beautiful sunsets like this one.}

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{We played mini golf three times and each time it ended with a tantrum but the kids still claimed to love it and wanted to play more!}

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{On one of the many water slides at Gotland’s big water park}

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{The highlight of Clemmie’s holiday was getting a cuddle from her all-time heroine Pippi Longstocking. The original house seen in the Pippi films is on Gotland and is now part of a bigger amusement park with lots of rides}

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{And if that wasn’t enough, we also spent a day at Tivoli in Copenhagen on our way back to the ferry. Not quite so lucky with the weather that day but at least there were no queues!}

So that’s it, a brief synopsis and rather a lot of pictures of our holiday. Hope you are all well and enjoying the last of the summer.

‘Til the next post. X

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Five on Friday

A week and a half into the summer holidays and we have settled into a routine of sorts. I do a couple of hours work in the morning, while the children play and watch TV. Then we have lunch and head out to the swimming pool at our local gym or just play in the garden – the paddling pool is still a huge success. The boys went to sports camp for two days at the start of the week and I had a meeting up in London for work but apart from that we haven’t strayed too far from home. Next week they are all going to camp on Tuesday and Wednesday before we go to Sweden for two weeks.

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{This has been the weather for most of the week – although rain is forecast for tomorrow.}

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{The paddling pool is very popular and the kids can now set it up and deflate it by themselves}

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{Cameron prefers to kick a football around the garden}

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{Today I gave the kids the option of going to the Aquarium up in London or to the cinema. They chose the latter and we went to see How to Train Your Dragon 2}

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{Followed by a late lunch at Pizza Express.}

Hope you all have a fantastic weekend! We’re going to put the roof box on the car and start packing for our holiday. X

School’s Out For Summer!

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{Woohoo! Finally the summer holiday is here and we celebrated by buying a family sized paddling pool! Still in its box so no pictures yet but planning to get it out tomorrow}

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{Who’s ready for sun, sea and ice cream? I really hope the glorious weather stays put for our holiday in two weeks’ time.}

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{No need to call social services, I won’t go quite that far but it will be nice to take a more relaxed approach for a few weeks!}

The Beauty Edit: Summer Wishlist

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Summer is finally here and it’s time to ditch the heavy makeup and opt instead for a lighter, more natural look. As much as I love an opulent¬† smoky eye and decadent red lip, it just doesn’t look right on sunny evenings. Here are some of the beauty products I’m planning to invest in this season:

1 Dior ‘Nail Glow’ – A slightly pink nail polish that enhances the natural colour of your nails to give them a light, healthy sheen.

2. St Tropez Self Tan Luxe Dry Oil – A moisturising non-greasy formula that gives a long lasting natural looking tan.

3. Laura Mercier Body Butter in Almond Coconut Milk – I always associate the smell of coconut with summer and this body butter is the ultimate in luxurious skincare.

4. Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose – A lighter version of my favourite fragrance that comes in a bottle “inspired by the iridescent wings of a butterfly”. What’s not to love?

5. Nars Matte Multiple in Anguilla – A non-sparkly version of the cult cheek & lip stick in a selection of vibrant and sun-kissed shades.

6. Clarins Rouge Eclat in Juicy Clementine –¬† The perfect lipstick for fair-skinned people like myself who want to embrace this summer’s trend for orange lips. Plus the name reminds me of my lovely daughter!

7. Mac Prep + Prime Highlighter – A pen-style highlighter that can be used over or under makeup to add radiance and a sheer wash of colour.

8. Ghd White Eclipse – I know it’s not great for my hair but I use my ghd hair straightener every day. This new version promises to style your hair in a single stroke while actually making it stronger.

 

 

 

Pin-Worthy Summer Recipes

Lately I’ve been trying to add more vegetables to my diet. Now that summer is almost here, fresh produce is in abundance so it’s the ideal time to shift your healthy eating up a gear. I love salads but find that unless I add protein and/or grains, they don’t really fill me up and I’m hungry again an hour or two later. As always, Pinterest is an endless source of inspiration and I’ve been busy pinning a few recipes I would like to try over the next few weeks. Now, if only I could convince my two youngest kids that these dishes are so much nicer than pizza or plain pasta…

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Shrimp Tacos

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Chorizo, Tomato & Chickpea Salad

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Sesame, Almond, Avocado & Spinach Salad

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Butternut Squash and Barley Salad with Poached Egg

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Quinoa Tabbouleh with Chickpeas

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Roasted Sweet Potato and Red Onion Salad

Find all these recipes and more on my ‘Food’ board on Pinterest