Road trip for 8 …ooh and a fur baby

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Oooh it seems like forever since I sat down and wrote about our adventures, when in reality it has only been five days.

What an end to the Summer Holidays we had and I don’t seem to have stopped since. I must admit it is really nice to have the kids back in to a routine and Penny too for that matter. The two mornings a week she goes to Nursery have become routine so quick, we are used to having a little bit of free time (as yet we are to plan something with those few hours other than housework). It has been great for her as she has come on leaps and bounds. Within two days she wanted to use the potty and toilet like the other children. Bye bye nappies. We are still rocking one on a night but other than that they have gone the journey.

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I really must tell you about our holiday, it seems a million years ago, but as I haven’t shared our adventures in Scotland it seems like a good place to start……

After having Caitlin and Liam for the Bank Holiday weekend and being super busy getting ready we got up on the Monday to packed cars and all ready to go. The aim was to get up and leave for 1030 but we were far to eager. Having got up, packed the chilled and frozen food, tidied up and hoovered, we were all just sat around waiting to go. So we left at 945, with the aim of stopping a couple of times on the way up to our Haven home for five days.

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The journey up was fairly smooth, we got held up in roadworks just outside Morpeth and as we got past them we had a toilet stop. Berwick saw us stop for our lunch at McDonald’s and we let Louie stretch his legs as well as his vocal cords. We were on target for a 3pm arrival but the time we set off from Berwick and we weren’t far out when we arrived in Port Seton.

Haven, Seton Sands is a mainly flat park and is in the picture-perfect countryside close to Edinburgh (just a 30 minute drive away). Cross the road at the bottom of the park and you’ll find a sand and rock pool beach.

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Having visited another Haven site a few years ago I wasn’t expecting very much but was blown away from the moment we pulled in to the car park. The Seton Sands site is smaller than other sites I have visited and very personal. The staff were friendly from the outset and everything felt very relaxed. We stayed in the Deluxe accommodation and the caravans all had plenty of outside space, you didn’t feel like you were on top of the caravan next door and there was plenty of space to park up both of the cars outside the caravan.

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The caravan was sizeable and the kids all had plenty of space. Mark and I found our bed and with the exception of the lack of bedding for our bed we were 100% satisfied with our accommodation. We both came away saying we would always pay that little bit extra from now on to make sure that we got the bigger van with more outside space and privacy.

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A caravan holiday for me is made when you can lie down on that corner couch and just stare out at the sky. Dream away and relax…Perfection is gained if there is rain to make the caravan seem ultra cosy but in our case the sun was blazing down and it was hotter than Spain…..(who goes to Scotland for sunshine?).

We spent the night relaxed, playing cards and filling our faces as we had Zoo tickets booked for the Tuesday.

After a not so comfortable night (a double bed is not a super king size bed and it being a camp bed the mattress wasn’t the best), although we didn’t expect it to be, we got up and got ready for Edinburgh Zoo.

A few years ago we went up and did Edinburgh Castle and Edinburgh Zoo and loved it. Libby wasn’t of an age to remember it and Liam and Caitlin had never been, so I was really excited to see how they reacted to being there.

For those of you that are unfamiliar with Edinburgh Zoo, it is very central and on a big hill and when booking you have to book a time slot to view the pandas. We were booked in for 1030 and made it…just.

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Last time we visited we were allowed to go in to the sleeping area for the pandas. This time however the Zoo think that the female is pregnant so the indoors section is closed. We were told that they were currently sleeping and we would be luck to see them.

We made our way round to the male enclosure. The kids were loving looking for them and just as we were about to give up hope we were told to quietly walk around to the female section as she was out. Talk about lucky, she brushed right up against the window and the kids all got a good look at her. Caitlin got an amazing photo of her (I will try and get a copy of it to share with you)

From there, the Zoo went from strength to strength. We were lucky to have such good weather and I think that played a part in how lucky we were to see so many animals. I know a few people who have been this year and said they were disappointed as quite a few of the animals had not been out.

The kids were fascinated with the animals and Penny met her “new best friends” or so she said when she saw all the monkeys. Libby fell in love with the meerkats and so did Caitlin.

Rather than boring you with what and who we saw, here are some pictures of our day…

The Penguins, could have spent all day watching them….

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The walk through Wallabe section, Horse’s in Pyjamas, Koala and Meerkat…

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Seriously, how big are these birds?

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Ants….amazing to see them carrying leaves across our heads…(the smallest thing)

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Monkeys, monkeys and more monkeys …..

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The very handsome Lion…

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One thing I would say for anyone fancying going is to make sure you take a packed lunch with you. The drinks and food on sight are very expensive and for all I had taken a packed lunch, it cost us nearly £20 for 8 bottles of pop.

When we got back we had some tea and had a walked over to the Clubhouse and again it was lovely, the amusement arcade was small and everything was clean, bright and welcoming. The entertainment staff were great with the kids. We were all very tired so decided to go back to the caravan and spend the day on site on the Wednesday.

Wednesday and Thursday were spent on site. We vowed we wouldn’t spend much time on the site but the kids wanted to explore, they wanted to go swimming, visit the beach, go to the park and spend time at the clubhouse and arcades.

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The kids had a fantastic time over the two days collecting shells, splodging in the water and playing at the park. We went over to the clubhouse on the nights, after having takeaway for tea, Mark got himself taken up on stage to take part in the shows twice. The big ones both met girls and swapped numbers with them, so that was them sorted.

Back to the takeaway for the minute we had Fish and Chips one night and on the Thursday night we were keen to try. Now for anyone of you that should happen to be visiting Seton Sands, please try Carlos….simply the best Kebab I have ever tasted.. (After a few glasses of wine on the Wednesday night Mark and I had a hankering that needed to be filled).

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All to soon Friday was upon us and it was time to come home. I won’t lie coming home wasn’t something I wanted to do at this point. I was so relaxed but needs must. We set off home and stopped along the way where we had stopped on the way up.

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By far Haven Seton Sands is the best site I have visited and we  would go back again.

Now all we have to worry about is where do we go next year?

xxxxx

Update x

Its been a long old week, well maybe a little longer than a week…..

I didn’t want to bore you with my treatment waffle. (For all I find a lot of comfort in what I type, there is only so much of my rational and irrational thinking that is worth reading, I save that for annoying Mark with).

I simply have not had much focus on anything else other than the take it or leave thoughts that were flowing through my mind.

What have we been up to sine my girly shopping day last week?

Well this happened……..

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Not the most interesting of things, agreed, but we have been promising ourselves new living room flooring for as long as I can remember. There has been some serious long term saving going on for it and finally it is down.

What else…..?

Well I have booked up to go to Edinburgh Zoo while we are on holiday later in the year.

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Not the first time we have been but its the first time all the kids will have been and it will be nice to have them at an age where they all remember going.

They are all very excited about the Monkeys. Lions and Penguins ……oooh and of course the Panda’s.

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Then is the point we hit ….”Mam. I’m bored” GRRRRRRRRR

We have had a group discussion of what the kids would like to do and they have told me games (got loads of them), craft things (working on that one), Reading (Amazing idea) and a Baking Day.

With a little help from me Libby has discovered paper back “Proper” reading books.

We came across the My Little Pony books the other day and bought her ……… It took her 2 days to finish it but 16 chapters and she is done and desperate to read some more. So, while out today I invested in …….for her.

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Seeing her reading has really got my interest for reading up again. I love a good book, but it has to tickle me. I loved reading just like the kids when I was at school but when I left the interest just fell. I love a good book, its finding the right one.

That leaves me with the mission of finding me something good to read, some good series for Libby to pick up on and something that is age appropriate for Regan. (Next post)

A Baking day is on the cards for the week after next.

(If you have any suggestions of books, baking ideas and/or cheap/free things to do then please feel free to comment)

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Then of course we had hospital on Tuesday.

If you haven’t read my previous post, Too Erivedge or Not??? , then have a quick read. ( I will let you catch up 🙂 )

Right, well I had my questions ready and these are the answers I got…

  • What are the most common side effects within the patients that are already taking it in their care?

    I asked this question and was told that most patients with side effects will get a degree of muscle spasms, hair loss and appetite issues. Mark asked how many patients they currently had who were experiencing no side effects what so ever. To this she replied, we do have patients who have no side effects, in fact there are a few.

  • How many patients have stopped taking it because of the side effects? (Bearing in mind the words used by CR UK are “You keep taking the treatment until it stops working or the side effects become too great.”

    Quite a few, but then those that persevere find that the side effects become less extreme over time.

  • Is it going to interfere with me starting college and working? (I have less concern about work than college as I work from home and have an amazing employer)

    I am likely to suffer fatigue, but if I structure and routine my days then this can be managed

  • Will it have a knock on effect in every part of my life?

    Until I start taking them there is no way of knowing, each patient is different, only time will tell.

  • If/When I stop taking it, will it mean I am more prone to cancer than I was before taking it?

    It is specifically aimed at BCC growth, and there is no evidence to suggest that this is the case.

  • Will it mean that my growths increase in growth speed?

    There is no evidence to suggest that this would happen.

The other question I had was, “Can I start when the kids are back at school?”, I am very thankful that the answer was “yes”.

The paperwork was signed, the vampires stole some blood and I return at the beginning of September to collect the drugs.

I can’t say I am 100% convinced by the whole thing but then I fear any new treatment or procedure. Then I guess that is only natural, fear is a good sign, means I am human, well at least that is what I am told.

xxxxx

End of Holidays Party (4/6/2016)

May half term was all but over and the kids wanted to do something so I thought lets have a “Last Party before the Summer Parties Party”

I am not one for going out because of the way I am, so anything I can organise in my comfort zone with friends and family is perfect.

So a bouncy castle was booked through Partytime Inflatables , bbq food was bought and our friends were invited.

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We set out with the intention of making it a Fun Day, having different stations around the garden with various outdoor toys at them to play with. Although we had skipping ropes, hula hoops in all different sizes, bubbles, bats and balls, rounders set and outdoor tents, the kids seemed far more interested in the Minecraft bouncy castle with slide.

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We had a lovely day and the kids enjoyed every minite. It didn’t go without incident, there was the run of the mill I have hurt this, that and the other on the bouncy castle but the weather held out.

Open fire BBQ, burgers, hot dogs, chicken and sausages…..we ate well.

By the time the castle went we had a mass of sleepy children who we sent off to bed.

Us adults finished off the day with a nice glass of wine in the hot tub.

Happy children = Happy Parents x