Fantastic Four: The latest adventures from Susie, Greg, Milo & Rex
Something's happened since we became a family of four; we’ve been out the house far more. We were always outdoorsy, but nowadays we’re actively seeking out fun days in fields, fetes, exhibitions, you name it. And it’s been bloomin’ great!
We’ve steadily come to realise if we want to stay sane with two under three then it involves wearing the eldest out, having the newborn soak up all the fresh air available and heading somewhere with the availability of coffee and cake. Come rain or shine, we’re leaving the house as soon as the morning reaches a decent hour (turns out there’s not much happening at 6:50am) and jumping in the car to drive somewhere for a day of fun.
This month, we’ve been trying to focus our attention on bygone years. My other half is a huge history buff and it’s his absolute dream to have our children grow up with an appreciation and interest in all things old and dusty. A couple of weekends ago, we visited a local abbey which was running a medieval event and all the children got to touch suits of chainmail, pick up (with some very heavy guidance) swords, watch falconry displays and less archaically, jump on bouncy castles. It absolutely tipped it down but Milo enjoyed every part of it (the bouncy castle mainly) and we came away feeling like he’d learned something as well as tire himself out.
He’s now asking plenty of questions about knights and armour and jousting (much to Greg’s happiness) so we’re looking to exercise our English Heritage card over the coming weeks and head to a few different castles and ruins; it’s great that he’s starting to be old enough to understand and explore a bit more. And it’s equally great that Rex is small enough to be dragged around in his pram for the ride.
Deepest Kent was our destination for the weekend just gone; I was a bridesmaid for one of my best friends so Saturday was spent weeping, running around in a tight dress and watching Greg juggle two very young children by himself. On the Sunday, we plodded round Hythe (we’d liked to have visited some of the fantastic antique shops but sadly they were all closed) and then headed for one of my favourite spots; Samphire Hoe, on the outskirts of Dover.
We utterly lucked out; the weather was absolutely beautiful and the sea was calm and glistening. There’s great family walks, rock pools and strangely enough, cows, so Milo had a fab time exploring. You can’t really beat somewhere which offers up countryside, sea views and cattle. There’s a small tourist centre so you can get a bit more info on what it’s all about and the cafe’s got a whole host of snacks, meals and drinks available.
I’m always impressed when you visit somewhere with more for sale than stale chips and a bottle of coke and we took advantage of it. Goats cheese and pesto paninis, locally made chips, lattes. It topped the morning off nicely.
In the afternoon we met up with family so Milo and Rex could hang out with his cousins on the beach and near a flurry of boats. It’s only once you leave the seaside that you realise it’s a lovely place to be able to grow up; we’ll definitely be making more of an effort to visit.
If we’d had more time available, we’d have hung out to take a trip to Dover Castle. For anyone who hasn’t been, it’s an absolute MUST. Obviously spending my childhood in Dover means I’ve been there probably 432784 times, but there’s so much to do and see. The war tunnels are like a step back in time and the castle is beyond impressive. As soon as we’ve got another spare weekend, we’re zooming back down and showing Milo every nook and cranny; and while he’ll have a great time, Greg will be in his total element. Days out with kids doesn’t just have to be about them, does it?