family holiday · food diary · Greece · greek food · Uncategorized

Sampling the Cretan foods 

Every time I go to another country I always make sure I try the local foods, I’m a bit foodie anyway so this is never much of a chore for me! 

Some countries it works out better than others, the meat and dumplings in Prague was unusual but hey at least I can say I tried it!
Our hotel in Crete had so much on offer every day and always a designated section for traditional Greek food.
This sign was out at every meal time and I have to say I could get very used to the Cretan diet, I just loved the variety of beans and salad we could choose from and have to say I ate a lot of olives while out there! 

The Loukoumades in the picture were a sweet treat I particularly enjoyed, think of them as a small funny shaped doughnut with a bit of syrup and cinnamon sprinkled on. They were delicious and I had to stop myself before I ate too many!

Another thing Ioved about the food is the amount of different ways they present vegetables! This is my plate one evening, you can see where my extra few pounds came from, but on there I have stuffed pepper with feta cheese and tomatoes, roasted vegetables,fresh tomatoes and olives and vegetable balls! They also do so many different things with potatoes too it just really inspires me to come home and be more adventurous with my food.

T ate very well on holiday always picking at least 3 or 4 salad options for her plate and not being afraid to try new foods especially if I said  it was a Greek food! (This came in handy when I wanted her to try a couple of things and she wasn’t too sure, naughty Mummy!)

This was an evening where they had several different mouthfulls of food for you to try as you went in, my favourite was the feta cheese terrine but of course I tried them all! 

We were also lucky enough to get booked into the A la Carte restaurant one night of our stay where we were presented with a Greek meze starter to share and even a kids meze for T! It was delicious, the Greek meatballs and salad being a big hit but wow there was a lot of food! 

The one thing I was surprised about out there and didn’t even try for a few days was the Cretan wine. They don’t seem to have rose it’s either red or white and as I can no longer drink red because of my ceramic braces and I don’t like white wine I left it. But a few days in I became curious and tried it and it was delicious! It was so smooth and easy to drink I didn’t feel like I was drinking white wine at all! After that it became one of my favourites and I’m now on the hunt to see if I can get a bottle or two back home! Scott also enjoyed the Greek beer Mythos! 

Finally on our way home we had to stop and get some Milka from the airport. It’s kind of a tradition now every trip we come back from we have to bring some back so for us it’s not really a holiday unless we come back with Milka 😁

Family · family holiday · Parenting · travel · Uncategorized

Kids club abroad

So I have never been a fan of kids club abroad, I mean why pay for a family holiday if you are going to dump your kids in care several times during the week right? And whose kid really wants to go anyway? 
So the first two holidays we took to Spain T took one look at kids club and said nope, no way, She did absolutely no way, not one chance want to stay there! I could kind of see her point , It was full, and by that I mean crammed, of children of all ages who spoke all languages none of which seemed to be English. The workers weren’t English either and didn’t seem too fussed if we stayed or not. They had some activities out on tables and a play park attached but no real plan it was kind of just a free for all/do what you want sort of session and so for a 4/5 year old it must have seemed very daunting!

This year was 100% different. Firstly the welcome meeting at our hotel was a walkabout so we actually got taken to kids club where several staff members took the time to explain the sessions and how we signed up, What they do, How much fun they have. T was mesmorised! It was a boiling hot morning and she didn’t even once mention the glaring sun we were stood directly in while the explained, in maybe a little too much detail given the conditions, each aspect of the kids clubs for varying ages.
We took the forms and didn’t think much more of it, I wasn’t going to pressure T to go because being a family holiday I was quite happy to spend the whole week with her, after all it’s what I came away for right? But sure enough she asked to go. So the one day we knew would be cloudy I queued up first thing and got her a space in the morning session for 2 hours. She was thrilled.

We arrived and they took down our contact details and asked for T’s name and age and introduced her to the room, “This is Tiana from UK she is new today” 😊 She went in all smiles and seemed happy enough so we left.

Now what to do in a family resort without a child for 2 hours! We went and treated ourselves to a fancy coffee,took a walk along the beach, explored part of the hotel we hadn’t seen before and then waited until we could go and get her!

She had a great time! She came out with all sorts of artwork and had taken part in lots of team games inside, outside in the shade and in other areas of the resort. She had been given a t-shirt and water bottle that she was to wear to kids club if she went again and was hers to keep, again she was so happy about this and even bigger news…. She wanted to go again!!

I couldn’t believe it here was I doing everything i had ever stood against, putting my child in kids club on a family holiday! I wanted the difference to be that she wanted to go though, I was never going to force her. So again we left it a day and she asked again to go. One more morning session down and she had a great time once again.

As we were only there for a week I felt two sessions was enough not to interrupt our holiday too much so we didn’t let her go anymore and she understood why.

I am just still so shocked as to the turnaround in her this time. I think this was just the right kids club for her, the friendly faced encouraging staff really made her want to go and it seems so was made to feel so welcome she wanted to go back! The structure and controlled activities is just what she loves and I’m so pleased we let her have this positive experience, If she never goes to another one again she will always have that.

Children · Family · family holiday · Parenting · Uncategorized

Things I have learnt about T on this trip

She has the independence I knew about but is now growing the confidence to go along with it, during meal times she would happily go off to get her own drink and would get her own food and sit at a table on her own if I let her! Once I even had to chase her back to the poolside as she walked off to see where Scott had got too, this was day 2 and she had been at this pool once before! I don’t know why but she must have felt so immediately comfortable where we were she just seemed to forget all usual rules about not walking off alone.

 She can sing anywhere and not feel self conscious about it. Not loudly but quietly along to herself occasionally accompanying it with a dance move or two. Unless in the car when we get the full surround sound of whatever is going through her head phones, no need for radio!

She can laugh at herself, unless she is tired then she gets grumpy.

She has a determination that makes me proud-we saw this with her swimming, sea swimming.

She is young enough to still say things wrong and make us laugh but old enough to be able to go sightseeing in an old town and not complain.Some of the highlights of holiday were 

“Runaway track” – runway 

Sunball – the sun

“I’ve got dots on my screen!” – she is swimming and water has splashed her sunglasses!

Air freshener – air conditioning!
She is happy with hers and our company and doesn’t set out to make friends, She would have been friendly towards anyone that we met but as no one approached her/us to play she was happy to play at the park/in kids club etc on her own. This must come from being an only child but I’m pleased she isn’t needy of other kids attention and can be happy having fun with us for now.

Is too polite a lot of the time and often lacks guts/balls/just a bit of umph! She gets pushed infront of in lines and doesn’t speak up when I’m a group of kids until it’s too late and someone has already been chosen for the activity.

She isn’t boastful, T was lucky enough to get a suitcase scooter for Xmas that we could use around the airport and a lot of other kids commented on it how cool it was, they wanted one. She just smiled and looked at us proud of her new toy, one little girl even threw a tantrum because she wanted one right then! She was only about 3 bless her. 

family holiday · swimming · teaching your child to swim · Uncategorized

Teaching your child to swim

I’ve taken T swimming from a young age? I think she was 10 weeks old on her first trip and she has always loved the water. Well I say loved It, she loves swimming as long as she doesn’t get any water on her face! As long as I can remember she has never been brave enough to jump in, has never liked being splashed, and has never wanted her ears or head under the water. I suppose I didn’t push this or encourage it because she was happy enough bobbing along with her float on the surface and I didn’t like getting my head wet so why should she? Being the one to take her swimming the most and then being on my own with T we were happy with where we had got to and didn’t see any need to move on from there really. 
The last family holiday we had abroad was 2 years ago and all I remember was T’s confidence in the water soaring over the week and she had actually stopped crying if she got a drip of water on her face.

This holiday was so completely different. The first day we had the usual drama and upset when she got splashed and so in the end we bribed her, Yes it got to that, just to put her head under the water. It worked and she was soon walking along the bottom with her head under the water to huge cuddles and kisses at the end!

T could see how proud of her we were at how well she was doing so she tried and tried everything she was given. Firstly seeing how long she could stay underwater for then swimming underwater a short distance, then gradually longer. Throughout the holiday T was able to jump in to the shallow end, swim a short distance on the surface and jump in from the deep end swimming underwater a short distance to Scott or I.
This is a huge huge deal for T and we couldn’t be prouder although I have to give most of the credit to Scott. Without him pushing her to challenge herself further each and every day she would never have got this far. He encouraged her and told her she could do more and more to show Mummy so each time I came back to the pool there was another milestone reached. I am so proud of the way T has responded to him and the way she strived to make us proud and do well each and every day.

It only makes me feel why couldn’t I achieve with her what he has managed to? Because I was happy with her swimming the level it was at and didn’t push her to go further does that make me a bad parent? As I don’t jump into the pool or swim underwater very often she had no example and no one to look upto doing these things but now she does and look how far it’s got her. I’m proud of my baby girl each and every day but this holiday has made me extremely proud at just how much she has conquered her fear and achieved. Also i’m proud of the bond her and Scott have built, how they have worked together to move her forwards becoming ‘pool buddies’ only makes my heart melt.

Teaching your child to swim is a minefield, like the rest of parenting it doesn’t come with a manual but once you get it right you can be sure the struggles were worth it. 

chania · Crete · family holiday · travel · Uncategorized

Back from holiday, Back to blogging!

Hi guys I’m back after a superbly hot week away in Crete! What a beautiful place Crete is, We had a blast and I’m planning to tell you all about it over my next few posts. 

So firstly a bit about where we went, we stayed in Gerani, a small town just outside of Chania on the North of the island. It’s very mountainous there so the scenery on the transfer was stunning. As with anywhere in Greece there are a lot of unfinished buildings but if you look past that it is full of little local areas with a splattering of big, expensive looking villas with a sea view. 

As we went all inclusive we spent a lot of time in resort as we also had a beach belonging to the hotel so this was great. On one of the days we did venture out we went into Chania. 

Chania itself is a mix of old and new. We caught the local bus from near our hotel and took the journey through a few other resorts into the centre of town. The bus station is in a fairly new part of town but don’t be fooled as just a couple of minutes walk away we discovered the old town and the beautiful harbour. 

We wondered from one end to another looking at all the cafes and bars taking care to mind the horses and carts taking tourists along the front. We settled on a lovely little bar with a view right out onto the water. Considering the prime location the drinks were reasonably priced and the service excellent. 

This was our view from the bar, just picture post card really.

After our snack stop we wandered through the old towns narrow streets lined with multi coloured buildings often draped on colourful flowers. There were plenty of soiveniour shops but again all reasonably priced and also a town square which was lined with eateries.

We found Chania to be quaint, colourful and welcoming to visit and we would love to wander the streets again this time stopping at more of the bars and restaurants. 

More to come next time on our holiday to Crete 🏖

Thanks for reading!

Lou x

family holiday · family time · happy · making memories · Sunshine · Thankful · Uncategorized


The time has finally come after months of planning, excitement and waiting it’s that precious, wonderful time we call holiday! 

To me holiday means:

Hours of playing in the pool 

The excitement of exploring your destination 

Staying up late, no matter how little you are!

Dressing for the beach in the day and dressing up at night 

Trying the biggest ice cream you can, just because you can

Always finding out a little bit of history, still a history geek!

Trying all the cocktails on the menu, well it would be rude not to right?

Eating far more for breakfast than you would ever eat for lunch at home

Playing games by the pool, in the evening before the show starts, on the plane, in the airport…. tv? What is that?

Only having Wi-Fi once a day in reception or your room and not really caring!

Eating your body weight in food because after all it’s free! 

Dancing your self silly at a kids disco because you actually enjoy the music and the dance moves just as much as the little person!

Teaching the little person just a tiny amount of the local language but enough to make them feel proud 

Spending a whole week actually together, no interupptions, tiredness from work, no homework, routine or housework, just being a family and loving every minute of it!

Our last family holiday abroad 2 years ago

See you in a week guys!  😁

Lou xx