Living Arrows 29/52

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth

Kahlil Gibran

We had a bit of a quiet week last week and as a result I didn’t actually take many pictures. One I did take of BattleKid was after we had attended a traditional Fado last Saturday. This is a concert with two guitars players and there were four singers taking turns to sing traditional Portuguese songs. We adults thoroughly enjoyed it and BattleKid enjoyed the music, the singing not so much. He has alot to learn! Afterwards we were trying to decide where to go for dinner and a little person was hungry. So to fill the gap, I gave him one of the Piccolo pouches we were kindly sent recently for review (coming soon on the blog). It tasted quite nice and he enjoyed it.

living arrows

Linking up with Donna of What The Redhead Said. If you’d like to take part or see some other Living Arrows posts, please click the badge below.

Living Arrows

Celebrate the Gruffalo Ride at Chessington and Win!

During our weaning stage with BattleKid and beyond, Organix Goodies healthy snacks were the one thing I often popped into my shopping trolley. Not only are they made with the best organic ingredients and don’t have anything unnecessary added, but they also taste nice. I can vouch for them, having tried some of their snacks myself.

And now I’m delighted to tell you that Organix Goodies has partnered with Chessington World of Adventures and it’s new Gruffalo ride to offer little explorers and their parents the chance to GO FREE*. Gruffalo fans will be able to come face to face with the Gruffalo himself as they join Mouse on a picturesque ride through the deep dark woods, with twists and turns and splashy fun.Gruffalo Ride at Chessington

Goodies currently have a Gruffalo promotion on special multipacks of snacks (from May 2017) which gives one adult or child free entry to Chessington World of Adventures Resort. These are available from most supermarkets and Boots until stocks last and include oat bars, corn puffs and biscuits to name but a few.Organix Goodies Snacks

Even better, you can now purchase your little ones favourite Organix Goodies snacks within the park itself. How clever! And what’s more, some Goodies snacks are included in the Kid’s Meal Deal at Chessington Original Sandwich Company and the Coffee Hut.

To celebrate this Goodies promotion and the opening of the Gruffalo Ride at Chessington World of Adventure Resort, Goodies are offering one of my readers the chance to win a Gruffalo DVD and a bundle of goodies top selling organic healthy snacks (to the value of £10). All you need to do to be in with a chance to win is follow the instructions in the widget below. Good luck!

Gruffalo DVD and Organix Bundle

Cath x

Competition Terms and Conditions:

  • One DVD will be provided to the winner, along with £10 of Organix’s top selling healthy organic snacks.
  • The prize is non refundable and non transferable and there is no cash alternative.
  • Competition closes at midnight Thursday 27th July.
  • Open to my UK readers only.
  • Only verified entries will be counted.
  • The winner will be chosen at random and notified within 5 working days.
  • The winner will receive their prize direct from Greenhouse PR who are looking after this promotion.

*GO FREE

  • Each voucher gives ONE ADULT or ONE CHILD FREE entry with a full priced adult ticket purchased at the entrance until 30.04.18 at Chessington World of Adventures Resort.
  • Full priced adult tickets are £49 and full priced child tickets are £45.
  • To redeem, vouchers should be cut out and taken to the entrance.
  • The voucher can also be redeemed at Alton Towers Resort or SEA LIFE Bray (The Gruffalo River Ride Adventure is only located at Chessington World of Adventures Resort).
  • Only one free adult or child per entry voucher.
  • Children under 3 enter the Theme Park free of charge.
  • This voucher cannot be used with any other promotion, advanced booking or tickets bought online or by phone.
  • Full T’s & C’s at chessington.com/organix

 

Rides for Under 5s at Disneyland Paris

So now that we’ve done the planning and booked our trip to Disneyland Paris for December, the next thing that sprung to mind was the fact that I have no idea what rides are suitable for BattleKid or not. As mentioned in my previous post, BattleDad and I have been to Disneyland Paris together twice before on the 15th and 20th anniversaries. But both times we went on rides I’d consider geared more for adults or older children. I have no idea which rides are rides for under 5s at Disneyland Paris.rides for under 5s at disneyland paris

This year is both Disneyland and BattleDad’s 25th anniversaries so it’s a big celebration trip for us. Coupled with BattleDad celebrating 25 years since he was part of the opening crew, BattleKid will be approaching 4, me 40 (eek), so we want to enjoy it as much as possible as a family. That means seeking out rides suitable for all of us. But having been a carefree, childless couple on our last trips, we never investigated rides for under 5s at Disneyland Paris. So where do you turn to for advice so you know ahead of time which ones to make a beeline for? The blogging community of course, and here are the ones that they have recommended as being ideal for us and most importantly, BattleKid!

Rides for Under 5s at Disneyland Paris

Peter Pan’s Flight

This ride in Fantasyland got an overwhelming vote from the bloggers. Emma from Our Fairy Tale Adventure recommended it and said to get our Fast Pass for this ride as soon as we get to the park. The Peter Pan ride was also recommended by Beth of Twinderelmo, Nicole from The Mum Reviews and Lauren from Mummy is a Gadget Geek. So, I think this is definitely going on our to-do list. You start at the Darling children’s nursery before flying over London by night to get to Neverland. After seeing the sights of Neverland you return to London by the power of pixie dust and happy thoughts. I think we’ll be going on this one without a doubt!

Buzz Lightyear Laser Blaster

This ride in Discoveryland was mentioned by many of the bloggers as another one not to be missed. It sounds fun too and has been recommended by Beth of Twinderelmo and Nicole from The Mum Reviews, while Laura of Mama, Eden and Me also enjoyed it. Nat from Awaybies said her son loved it so much they went on this ride no less than 6 times! It is an interactive ride in which you shoot at targets to get a final score at the end of your ride. Helping Buzz to defeat the Evil Emporer Zurg you gain a ranking in Star Command by the end. I can see this getting competitive between BattleDad and I nevermind BattleKid! And we can use our Fast Passes for this. Bonus.

It’s A Small World

…. After all. It’s stuck in your head, right? Sorry. But this ride, also in Fantasyland, got big thumbs up from Kerry of Blissful Domestication, who said it is not to be missed if visiting Disneyland Paris with younger kids. She went with her then 3 and 4-year-olds and while they loved rides catering for younger children such as cars, spaceships and boat rides, they especially loved It’s A Small World. Laura of Mama, Eden and Me also recommended this ride, as did Lauren of Mummy is a Gadget Geek. During your “It’s A Small World” tour, as you set sail the Seven Seaways, you will experience diverse cultures from around the world while accompanied by the iconic and sometimes annoying classic song. The song is already stuck in my head so I might as well go see what it’s all about.

Mad Hatters Tea Cups

This Fantasyland ride was recommended by both Emma of Our Fairy Tale Adventure and Lauren of Mummy is a Gadget Geek. Just from the pictures alone, it looks bright and colourful and fun. Each oversized tea cup spins and you control the speed and direction depending on the level of fun and stomach churning you might want. If the queue isn’t too bad for this I think I might try this one out. Not sure we want to do it too soon after lunch though.

Le Carrousel de Lancelot

Based in Fantasyland, this is Disney’s take on the classical carrousel where young knights ride upon hand-sculpted steeds and get ready for an enchanting ride. I’m hoping this ride as recommended by Emma of Our Fairy Tale Adventure will bring me back to Sunday afternoons watching Mary Poppins as a child.

Blanche-Neige et les Sept Nains (Snow White)

Nicole from The Mum Reviews recommended doing this ride as part of our Magic Hours if we can. This ride in Fantasyland allows you to experience the world of Snow White like never before, while you visit places like the haunted forest and the dwarves’ cottage.

Les Voyages de Pinocchio

Another Fantasyland ride on which you get to join Pinocchio and his friends such as Jiminy Cricket. This ride was also recommended by Nicole, especially during Magic Hours, which are extra hours you get in the park if you stay in a Disney Hotel. Point noted! Breakfast early then!

Orbitron

An awesome looking rocket ride in Discoveryland, this ride inspired by Leonardo da Vinci’s drawing of the solar system was also recommended by Nicole as one to try and do during Magic Hours. Nicole did say that there aren’t many rides in the main Disney Park that are not suitable for little ones as opposed to those in the Walt Disney Studios Park.

Ratatouille: The Adventure

Ratatouille is a 4D experience based in the Walt Disney Studios Park which was introduced in 2014 and comes recommended by Lauren of Mummy is a Gadget Geek. Experience the sights, sounds and smells of Gusteau’s famous Parisian restaurant and you might leave hungry. Maybe one for just before lunch perhaps?

Cars Quartre Roues Rallye

A Disney Cars ride in Walt Disney Studios, I can us queuing up for this over and over again by a certain 3-year-old. Recommended by Emma of Our Fairy Tale Adventure, you get to zoom along Radiator Springs with Lightening McQueen. That’s one day’s activities sorted for our Cars fanatic!

Slinky Dog Zigzag Spin

A Walt Disney Studios ride also recommended by Emma, you are invited to shrink down to the size of Buzz and Woody and jump onto the back of Slinky as he tries to catch his tail. All Toy Story Fans will love this ride.

Any worry I had about rides for under 5s at Disneyland Paris have vanished thanks to the recommendations of all these wonderful bloggers. There are plenty to choose from and one or two even allow you to use Fast Pass which is great. There are some rides I can see us queuing hours for but as long as BattleKid comes away with a smile on his face I’ll be happy. My only concern is that the Pirates of the Caribbean ride is currently closed. This is the one BattleDad and I made sure we went on during our previous visits and I do hope it reopens before December.

I must also mention an absolutely brilliant post written by Vicki of Family Travel with Ellie entitled ‘Disneyland Paris with young children’. In it she details the best rides for under 5s at Disneyland Paris including:

  • Buzz Lightyear Laser Blaster,
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant,
  • Orbitron,
  • Ratatouille: The Adventure,
  • Autopia,
  • It’s A Small World,
  • Peter Pan’s Flight and
  • Le Carrousel de Lancelot.

It is a brilliant post for anyone planning to visit or going to Disneyland Paris with under 5s and I’ve added it to my Disney Pinterest Board for reference!

A big thank you to all the bloggers who answered my call for help in what rides for under 5s at Disneyland Paris they would recommend we do. I haven’t been on any of these rides before so am looking forward to experiencing a different kind of Disney than before our son came along. While I enjoyed it I think this visit is going to be much more magical.

Would you recommend any other rides for under 5s at Disneyland Paris that might have been missed?

Cath x

rides for under 5s at disneyland paris rides for under 5s at disneyland paris

29/52 My Sunday Photo: 16/07/2017

The week before last we met some friends of ours from the UK in mid-Portugal. They were holidaying in Lisbon and we hadn’t seen them in quite a long time. Seeing as we were both in the country we found a halfway point and met for lunch.
It just so happened that the town of Beja, our meeting point, also had an amazing castle in it which we explored briefly before lunch. I am amazed at how many castles are in Portugal. They’re just something I didn’t associate with it.
my sunday photo
my sunday photo my sunday photo my sunday photo
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Photalife

The Portugal Diaries #4

After very little sleep, my alarm went off at 4.45am UK time. Bleary eyed doesn’t even cover it. I got up and helped BattleDad sort our bags before he walked BattleDog. I got BattleKid up and dressed and we loaded the car back up, full to the gills. We set off at 5.25am to make our way out of the beautiful mountains of Northern Spain to head South, down the backbone of Spain to Portugal.

portugal diaries 4
The hills of Northern Spain

I had to admit the windy roads of the mountains did nothing for my stomach, making me reminisce about Tenerife. It took us over two and a half hours to get out of the mountains and find flat roads as we started to make our way to the A67, which we finally joined just above Osorno. To be fair we had gone through some amazing countryside, some of the likes we would never have expected for Spain.

We started searching for a services to stop at and grab some breakfast, but we soon discovered that Spanish services are not located at the side of the motorway. The first one we eventually found was more than 2 miles off the motorway! I walked BattleDog while the boys headed to the toilets before we finally sat down to bacon sandwiches (not the UK type) and a cuppa. The services were ok and we filled the car to ensure we had plenty to get us to the next one.

We had made that rule when we stopped outside Santander, and I was glad we had filled up there instead of hoping we’d have enough in the tank, as the journey out of the mountains used up quite a bit of fuel.

Bellies somewhat sated, we drove back the 2 miles to rejoin the motorway and carried on for another two hours. Somewhere before Valladolid, we diverted into a small town to fill up again with fuel. Here, an attendant filled the car, and BattleDad later wondered if she had put the right type of diesel into the car. More on that to come, keep reading.

Just outside this town, we eventually came across more motorway-type services so we decided to stop here for lunch and a toilet break for both us and the dog. The food here wasn’t great but it filled a hole. We didn’t need to fill the car as it hadn’t been long done. BattleDad said he’d carry on driving for a while longer before handing it over to me so he could get a snooze.

Literally minutes outside this services, the car went into restricted performance mode, we lost power and had a bright red engine warning light on the dash. Cue serious amounts of panicking from me. We hadn’t even passed Salamanca, had over 400 miles to go and all with a car full of belongs, dog and child. This is not what we needed right now. My panicking didn’t help the situation either.

portugal diaries 4
This sign for Portugal was deceptive. It was for the middle of Portugal, not the South where we were heading!

BattleDad had a diagnostic plug-in tool with him that linked to his phone to check the error and it said something to do with the Turbo. He cleared it and said we could probably carry on but keep the revs under 2k and the speed steady to reduce our chance of the turbo kicking in. We had been making really good time, I’ll say no more, and our ETA started extending now.

portugal diaries 4
A sure sign we were in Spain

An hour later we swapped over and I got my first taste of driving on the wrong side of the road. It was ok as it was motorway the whole way, so only two lanes and intermittent vehicles to worry about. We drove through some horrendous storms too as we headed South. We were really surprised as the saying “the rains in Spain fall mainly in the plains” was coming true.

After an hour BattleDad woke but I carried on, just hoping to get us to Tavira without any more hiccups. I drove us nearly 300 miles to the other side of Seville before we stopped for a toilet break. We decided not to eat as we were only an hour and a half from my parents place and I knew my Dad would be getting dinner ready for us.

BattleDad took over and just before we crossed the Spanish/Portuguese version of the Severn Bridge we got another repeat of restricted performance and red engine light. I wasn’t as worried this time as we were closer to Tavira but I was still worried. BattleDad cleared it again and we crossed the bridge into Portugal.

We came across a road block and found border patrol checking documents in some cars. Needless-to-say the UK number plate meant we were pulled over too. BattleKid was asleep and the border patrol office just checked our passports and sent us on the way. Had he opened the boot he’d have gotten a black surprise in his face.

portugal diaries 4
Nearly there…

We finally arrived into my parents place near Tavira at 6.15pm, after 13 hours on the road. Both exhausted and relieved we’d made it, I was so glad to get out of the car, unpack and sit down.

We were here, we’d arrived and our journey to start our new life in Portugal had come to an end, nearly 56 hours after we had left South Wales.

BattleDad, BattleKid and I were early to bed that night after a very long day and none of us arose until well after 9am, which is almost unheard of…..

To be continued….

Cath x

If you missed my previous instalments of The Portugal Diaries you can read Part 2 and Part 3 again.