Day out


Must do activities in London

London is like another world. Made famous in film, song and literature, it is one of the most highly populated cities in the UK and it isn’t hard to see why many thousands of tourists flock to visit every year.  But even if you’re lucky enough to count yourself native to the capital, it’s worth taking time to revisit all the great things the city offers. Perfect for individuals, couples and even those with small children, London features something for everyone. Bursting with art galleries, restaurants, historic sites and theatres, use the must-visit guide below and tick some activities off your bucket list. Visit a museum London is home to some more »


Sunderland International Airshow 2013 – a view from the sea 1

We adore the Sunderland International Airshow and it is something we have visited every year with the boys since returning to the North East. However, this year MadDad and MIni had the opportunity to view the airshow from a different perspective. They took the DFDS Sunderland Airshow Sailout, which costs £15 for children and £30 for adults and includes a three course lunch too.

The sailout is such a popular event that it often sells out early and we were lucky enough to receive our tickets via the press office.

The trip at a glance

10:30-11:00 Check-in and board the ship. Boarding will take place at 11am
11:30 Ferry leaves port for Sunderland. You have a three course buffet lunch.
12:20 Ferry arrives at viewing point off Seaburn and Roker
14:00 Ferry leaves Sunderland for voyage back to port
15:00 Ferry arrives back into port. All passengers disembark
MadDad’s Review

You are guided to a free car park as you enter the Port of Tyne and then are shown where to exchange your ticket for boarding pases and board the ship. Once onboard you have the freedom of the ship and we decided to go for our lunch, which was a three course buffet style meal. Both Mini and I enjoyed the food, although we did find the drinks rather expensive (which are the only extras you have to pay for).

The boat dropped anchor off shore at 12.20 and we found a place on the deck to watch the Red Arrows who were opening this years airshow. It was hot on deck and I was glad that we had took sunscreen and hats. Although there was 500 people onboard the ship didn’t feel crowded and there was plenty of room to find a vantage point.

Watching from the sea gave a whole new perspective on the airshow. The planes were closer and we had super views and really enjoyed our day. There was people of all ages on board the ship from families with small children and older couples. You avoid all the traffic and queues getting out of Sunderland.

The only negatives were that the day was far too short and we didn’t get to see all the days flights and also the drinks were more expensive than I anticipated. Saying that we will be looking at booking tickets for next year for the whole family.

Mini’s Review

I was really excited to be going on a special trip with just Daddy. I love planes and have lots of models at home and the airshow is one of my favorite things to go and see. I have never been on a ferry as big as the one I went on, which was called the King Seaways. The food was gorgeous and the carrots were my favorite part of the meal.

After the meal we went to get a drink of slush as it was very hot on the deck. I was excited to see the red arrows and they surprised me by being so close and it felt like they nearly skimmed the funnel of the ship. We also saw Misdemeanor (a Hawker Hunter), which I have seen before and could tell it was her by the colours she is painted.

We also watched two helicopters that did lots of tricks and they were absolutely class. I was a little upset to have to set off back before we saw the Typhoon. I wish the trip had been longer and I would love to go next year with all the family.


An Easter Sunday at Narnia Newby Hall 3

We are lucky to have Newby Hall just a short drive away and when we were invited to an Easter event there courtesy of Narnia The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, we thought it would be a great way to spend Easter Sunday. Especially as it is the first one without mum and she would help me organise the Easter egg hunts, plus mum loved Newby Hall and we had taken the boys there together.

We were also lucky enough to receive a cop of the movie on Blue Ray and DVD and have to say the boys have watched it 3 times since receiving it and we have watched it as a family too. It is a great movie with fantastical special effects and we loved the previous movies.


Let’s go hero, the new Ben 10 Ultimate Mission at Drayton Manor 5

The boys were super impressed with the Ben 10 Chaos Coaster. What is it with children, especially small ones, they always seem to want to go on rides that are far too scary or just safe for them to go on. My boys have no understanding of fear. I am not sure they have yet learned that emotions. So were delighted to find out that you can go on the ride as long as you are over 90 centimeters and can go on independently sans adult once you are 1.1 meters

It is a really super ride and Pippa has an explanation of the techical name for the ride on her blog A mothers Ramblings and she has a great video of the children and their verdicts. We also managed to get a phot of Sally and Flea from Who’s the mummy? on the coaster.

My boys verdict? Well the fact that they have asked everyday since if they can go back again, I would say it is a big huge thumbs up.

Disclosure: we received free entry to Drayton Manor Park and access to the Ben10 Ultimate Alien Mission ride for the purposes of this post. The boys also received a great goody bag including a Ben10 jacket . MadDad and I recei




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