Albert Memorial

What We Got Up To Over Half-Term

Half-term was pretty damn wonderful if I’m honest. The kids barely argued (world-first) and we had a fun-packed week of quality time together.

The sun helped of course, and the fact we could while away most of our time outside, going for strolls along the river, chomping ice lollies and pretending we were on ‘actual holiday’ abroad (of course, it really is worrying that we’ve had hot temps for Feb due to climate change and it’s on my mind daily).

I’m not even sure if this tree below should be in full bloom?!

blossom tree blossom

We also kicked off the week in style….

child looks pensively out of a window on the train

(jumper gifted by GANT)

child looks out of the window on a train to London

…With a jammy jaunt at our absolute fave: the Royal Garden Hotel which set the tone for a ‘lets pretend we’re tourists in London and Windsor’ kind of week.

5 star The Royal Garden Hotel

child sits on a bench in Hyde Park

(jumper gifted by GANT)

POSERS the lot of us!

Honest Mum at the Royal Garden Hotel

(Boots gifted by Vionic Shoes)

And what didn’t we do during our 3 days in the capital?!

child eats a sandwich in Hyde Park

We marvelled at dinosaurs at the Natural History Museum a walk from the hotel with classic Alexander quotes such as, ‘Don’t be scared, the dinosaurs won’t come back to life, they’re only fossils’ and, ‘Look at the T Rex’s arms Mummy, they’re like yours’which fittingly made me roar with laughter).

The Natural History Museum

We also visited the Princess Diana Memorial Playground in Hyde Park (the children adore the wooden ship on sand they’ve been playing on since babe-hood), and we even got a bit of shopping in with sports kits for the boys and a few dresses for Mama from Zara on the high street.

children play in the sand at the Princess Diana Memorial Playground  child plays in the sand at the Princess Diana Memorial Playground

Unsurprisingly, we scoffed ‘our faces off’ (as Xander would say) inhaling ALL of the CARBS, mostly from the comfort of our massive Queen sized bed in the spacious family room the Royal Garden gifted to us (you’ve got to love Room Service): it was bliss.

The children wanted to watch Christmas films as part of the Feast and Flicks Royal Garden package (and yes, my kids are weird) and later, after an uninterrupted soak in the bath and everyone slept, I finally got to watch epic rom com Crazy Rich Asians (the wedding scene is everything by the way) and you must watch it immediately.

We did work off all the feasting and racked up thousands of steps on the FitBit thanks to the pull of Hyde Park, a vision in the sunshine.

Hyde Park


Just look at the Albert Memorial as the sun set.

The statue is one of the most ornate you’ll find in London, and marks the death of Prince Albert in 1861.

The Albert Memorial


Back home, I received a literal education with Horrible Histories marathons (wow, that show is not for the faint-hearted and while it gets gruesome in parts, it taught me a lot) and I even got to show off the football skills I’d perfected during my uni days. Cool Mum or what?

playing football in Windsor

And these are pretty cool pics Peter took in Windsor to boot (get it) #soz.

child plays football

a shadow of a child playing football

Child in Windsor

The highlight, undoubtedly was my Mum visiting us from Yorkshire. Her wisdom, vegan dishes of beauty and love was gratefully received.

You must check out her Tabbouleh Salad and Aubergine and Potato Stew recipes on the blog.

sumptuous Middle Eastern salad

aubergine and potato casserole


She wasn’t just advising us in the kitchen either…

A former teacher she spent time reading with the boys and sharing her childhood stories, something Oliver, my eldest, can never get enough of.

They are pretty hilarious. I think mostly because my kids struggle to believe she was little once herself. They asked me the other day if I sent Pigeon Mail!

Mum and I really did laugh a lot.

Take the journey to the train station when Mum was heading back home…She had asked me to explain Instagram to her again (forgetting my instructions from the last time she visited) and as I was scrolling through her phone, I noticed message requests from various older ‘gentlemen’ showering her with compliments (watch out Papa G)!  She’s @honestgrandma if you would like to throw her some love, and I don’t mean the ‘sliding in to her DMs’ kind of love either).

That’s not all, after we had a belly-laugh at the hopeful courtiers (!) and she had posted an image under my watchful gaze, she looked up and said, ‘ After I post my photo, I need to add those hash-shags too, don’t I Vicki?. Oh gosh, not shags, I don’t mean shags, what are they called?’ ‘Hashtags Mum, Hashtags’!

Don’t let those men in your phone hear you asking for hash-shags, Mum!


I was still laughing about that when she’d arrived back in Leeds!

…Then, just like, half-term was over, the 7am wake-ups were a-go-go (*snooze, snooze and snooze some more), and the diary wrangling, late-night ironing, swimming lesson-taking and homework-helping (why didn’t I listen more in Maths) had begun again.

Roll on the Easter hols, hey.

Did you have a fun half-term too?

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