A family walk: Blaise Castle in Autumn



One bright Sunday a week or so ago Theo and I needed to get out the house as DIY was happening. I wanted a walk and Theo wanted a park, so we headed over to the Blaise Castle estate once more. Visiting in Autumn is probably my favourite time, just as the trees are turning and the sun is still warm enough to be happy outside exploring with no coats or hands turning blue. 

As soon as we arrived the sounds of children shrieking and laughing filled the air, the playgrounds and fields filled with families playing, picnicking and out enjoying the sun together. Theo scooted past the small playground straight to the big kids play area, showing me once more that he's no longer a baby and can confidently conquer even the tallest of slides and climbing frames. Proving to be one of our favourite parks in Bristol. 

We stayed a while until he could be persuaded to take a walk through the woods up to the castle, which to our surprise was open, for the first time on any of our many visits. We did what we always do, climbed over tree roots, searched for berries and treasures and looked out to admire the view. Once we reached the castle Theo hooted is way all the way up the spiralling staircase with excitement, and stepped out onto the castle roof to survey the land below us. The wind tousled our hair and blew in our faces as we peered over the walls at the people underneath and the Severn Bridge crossings in the distance. We stood in the middle to hear our voices bounce and echo around us, before descending down, counting the steps as we went. 

Our visit ended like it always does, with ice cream. Perhaps the last of this year? We returned home tired but refreshed and happy from our afternoon adventure. 

A family walk: Blaise Castle in Autumn



One bright Sunday a week or so ago Theo and I needed to get out the house as DIY was happening. I wanted a walk and Theo wanted a park, so we headed over to the Blaise Castle estate once more. Visiting in Autumn is probably my favourite time, just as the trees are turning and the sun is still warm enough to be happy outside exploring with no coats or hands turning blue. 

As soon as we arrived the sounds of children shrieking and laughing filled the air, the playgrounds and fields filled with families playing, picnicking and out enjoying the sun together. Theo scooted past the small playground straight to the big kids play area, showing me once more that he's no longer a baby and can confidently conquer even the tallest of slides and climbing frames. Proving to be one of our favourite parks in Bristol. 

We stayed a while until he could be persuaded to take a walk through the woods up to the castle, which to our surprise was open, for the first time on any of our many visits. We did what we always do, climbed over tree roots, searched for berries and treasures and looked out to admire the view. Once we reached the castle Theo hooted is way all the way up the spiralling staircase with excitement, and stepped out onto the castle roof to survey the land below us. The wind tousled our hair and blew in our faces as we peered over the walls at the people underneath and the Severn Bridge crossings in the distance. We stood in the middle to hear our voices bounce and echo around us, before descending down, counting the steps as we went. 

Our visit ended like it always does, with ice cream. Perhaps the last of this year? We returned home tired but refreshed and happy from our afternoon adventure. 

Postcards from Barcelona (4)



The second half of our unplanned afternoon led us through the cool back streets of El Born. We've spent hours circling these streets before, and yet it's still something I will always enjoy. Pushing a sleeping toddler we peered down alleyways, noticed new shops and cafes along the way, we marvelled at the unchanged streets and the evidence of people everywhere. 

For all my love of the countryside, cities always draw me in and intrigue me. All the people living their separate lives, literally on top of each other, creating their own stories which weave in and out of their neighbours windows, sharing alleyways and the sunlight that filters through. Each area holds its secrets and treasures waiting to be discovered, changed and challenged through new generations. The history that may have unfolded on those very same streets fascinates me, and all of the changes that have yet to happen, witnessed by all those people who choose to call it home. Barcelona is a fine example of this city life with so much history packed between its walls and the wide range of people marking their place and telling their own stories. 

It is a place to sit back and people watch, and that's how we spent the afternoon. Talking, walking and watching. When Theo eventually woke up, for his naps were long and late whilst on holiday, we retraced our steps to a good looking ice cream place and sat in the square bustling with people to enjoy them. With our tummies still rumbling we headed to an old favourite Pim Pam for a little burger treat. As the evening slowly drew in we headed home, satisfied from our unplanned afternoon spent in the best way possible.

Barcelona, you stole a piece of my heart many years ago, and that piece just keeps on growing. 

Postcards from Barcelona (4)



The second half of our unplanned afternoon led us through the cool back streets of El Born. We've spent hours circling these streets before, and yet it's still something I will always enjoy. Pushing a sleeping toddler we peered down alleyways, noticed new shops and cafes along the way, we marvelled at the unchanged streets and the evidence of people everywhere. 

For all my love of the countryside, cities always draw me in and intrigue me. All the people living their separate lives, literally on top of each other, creating their own stories which weave in and out of their neighbours windows, sharing alleyways and the sunlight that filters through. Each area holds its secrets and treasures waiting to be discovered, changed and challenged through new generations. The history that may have unfolded on those very same streets fascinates me, and all of the changes that have yet to happen, witnessed by all those people who choose to call it home. Barcelona is a fine example of this city life with so much history packed between its walls and the wide range of people marking their place and telling their own stories. 

It is a place to sit back and people watch, and that's how we spent the afternoon. Talking, walking and watching. When Theo eventually woke up, for his naps were long and late whilst on holiday, we retraced our steps to a good looking ice cream place and sat in the square bustling with people to enjoy them. With our tummies still rumbling we headed to an old favourite Pim Pam for a little burger treat. As the evening slowly drew in we headed home, satisfied from our unplanned afternoon spent in the best way possible.

Barcelona, you stole a piece of my heart many years ago, and that piece just keeps on growing. 

Postcards from Barcelona (3)



So a month has flown by since we visited the fair city of Barcelona, and even though there's still a few fair bits to share, it's been lovely to look back and revive the memory of certain days as they all start to blur into one. Every day since we returned Theo has without fail asked me "remember when we went on the airplane?", often asking friends and family too. I think it will probably remain the highlight of his year! 

So after a busy weekend seeing the delights the streets of Barcelona had to offer us we had a lazy morning spent visiting the local park before setting off back out into the city. We took the tram, or as it was to be known as the "trampa" for the remainder of the trip, into the city. We didn't have too much of a plan, just to visit a park that we've visited many times before and walk and take it all in. We alighted the tram by the zoo and wandered around the Parc de la Ciutadella, a beautiful 19th Century park. After a foggy morning the sun broke through the clouds, and we spontaneously decided to take a little boat out on the small lake for half an hour. It may have been a little of a touristy thing to do, but we couldn't hide away from being a tourist the entire trip, and 6€ was a small price for a lot of excitement. My sister was on strict instructions to go no where near the paddles, as her and vehicles/mobile things and water do not bode well! We spotted birds and turtles and travelled round a few times before returning the boat.

We spotted a play park where we sheltered from the hot afternoon sun whilst Theo provided us with imaginary ice creams to keep us cool. We strolled around the rest of the park, taking the magnificent buildings of the museum and government buildings. 

We left the park in search of real ice cream and wondered over to an old favourite district of El Born...more of which I shall share later! 

Postcards from Barcelona (3)



So a month has flown by since we visited the fair city of Barcelona, and even though there's still a few fair bits to share, it's been lovely to look back and revive the memory of certain days as they all start to blur into one. Every day since we returned Theo has without fail asked me "remember when we went on the airplane?", often asking friends and family too. I think it will probably remain the highlight of his year! 

So after a busy weekend seeing the delights the streets of Barcelona had to offer us we had a lazy morning spent visiting the local park before setting off back out into the city. We took the tram, or as it was to be known as the "trampa" for the remainder of the trip, into the city. We didn't have too much of a plan, just to visit a park that we've visited many times before and walk and take it all in. We alighted the tram by the zoo and wandered around the Parc de la Ciutadella, a beautiful 19th Century park. After a foggy morning the sun broke through the clouds, and we spontaneously decided to take a little boat out on the small lake for half an hour. It may have been a little of a touristy thing to do, but we couldn't hide away from being a tourist the entire trip, and 6€ was a small price for a lot of excitement. My sister was on strict instructions to go no where near the paddles, as her and vehicles/mobile things and water do not bode well! We spotted birds and turtles and travelled round a few times before returning the boat.

We spotted a play park where we sheltered from the hot afternoon sun whilst Theo provided us with imaginary ice creams to keep us cool. We strolled around the rest of the park, taking the magnificent buildings of the museum and government buildings. 

We left the park in search of real ice cream and wondered over to an old favourite district of El Born...more of which I shall share later! 

postcards from Barcelona (2)

A few snapshots from the weekend spent leisurely wandering the bustling, sloping majestic streets of Barcelona. We visited an independent print and illustration fair, rode the funicular railway, gazed up at tall buildings, meandered between families and locals out walking in the fair evening weather, visited the flea market, played with water fountains, ate burgers, stopped for coffee and took in the view over the whole city, listening to brass bands pass like ants below.

Take me back!

postcards from Barcelona (2)

A few snapshots from the weekend spent leisurely wandering the bustling, sloping majestic streets of Barcelona. We visited an independent print and illustration fair, rode the funicular railway, gazed up at tall buildings, meandered between families and locals out walking in the fair evening weather, visited the flea market, played with water fountains, ate burgers, stopped for coffee and took in the view over the whole city, listening to brass bands pass like ants below.

Take me back!

A family walk: me and him

In a bid to get out the house a little more Theo and I took a little adventure of our own to spend a proper day together. We had a busy weekend planned with visiting family and friends that we didn't have time to go on a proper walk together then so this was our little walk together! Often on the days he doesn't attend preschool we meet up with friends, and mostly it's good to let them play together whilst we all have a bit of a rest and a catch up. When it's just Theo and I at home we play puzzles, trains, cook, read do stickers or paint etc, but it's not too often that we will go out for a whole day, just us two.

So even though the weather was pretty miserable we took the bus into the centre to meet Rob for lunch. I am still a little apprehensive about leaving the pushchair at home for a whole days outing, as it has become a sort of safety net, but I really needn't have bothered bringing it as Theo walked happily for the whole day and I felt a little silly pushing round an empty pushchair all day.

Anyway I digress, we met Rob and went to see the new location of our friends cafe, Bagel Boy. It's amazing to see how far they've come, from when we first tried their delicious bagels when they had a little corner in The Elbow Room on Park Street. It's even nicer knowing that they are young and local guys working hard and being successful! I always intend to take photos of our food before I shove it in my face, but when it arrives I fully forget about any previous plans or the future and just go right ahead and start devouring the food. But rest assured it was delicious!


Rob returned to work and we started out on our little adventure. We walked back to the centre and along the harbour side looking at the boats and chasing pigeons. Theo ran along the lines of the cobbled streets imagining them to be train tracks, and trying to spot the Cranky cranes along the docks.

We crossed the bridge and ran along the real train tracks by the Mshed museum, under the towering cranes, jumping from one track to the other. It started to rain so we took shelter in the museum and went to visit the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition. We had fun spotting the animals, but he obviously doesn't have the patience to look at each photograph properly, and was a lot more entertained by looking at the insects through a magnifying glass, dressing up and pressing buttons to produce some animal sounds, all of which were great features added to the exhibition (which makes me not feel so annoyed at having to pay £3 when it used to be free!)

After we'd had our fill of photographs and animal noises we had a little look around the museum once more before finally resting with cup of tea and a biscuit.

 We made our way back to the bus as dusk was creeping in, and with himself snuggled into my lap Theo fell asleep almost instantly. It was a fun little day out with my little friend and is something I know we need to do more often, get out of the house, away from things that 'need' doing and just enjoy our time together, because before long he'll be at school and I'll wish we had back the time where we could fill our days with little adventures, just me and him.

A family walk: me and him

In a bid to get out the house a little more Theo and I took a little adventure of our own to spend a proper day together. We had a busy weekend planned with visiting family and friends that we didn't have time to go on a proper walk together then so this was our little walk together! Often on the days he doesn't attend preschool we meet up with friends, and mostly it's good to let them play together whilst we all have a bit of a rest and a catch up. When it's just Theo and I at home we play puzzles, trains, cook, read do stickers or paint etc, but it's not too often that we will go out for a whole day, just us two.

So even though the weather was pretty miserable we took the bus into the centre to meet Rob for lunch. I am still a little apprehensive about leaving the pushchair at home for a whole days outing, as it has become a sort of safety net, but I really needn't have bothered bringing it as Theo walked happily for the whole day and I felt a little silly pushing round an empty pushchair all day.

Anyway I digress, we met Rob and went to see the new location of our friends cafe, Bagel Boy. It's amazing to see how far they've come, from when we first tried their delicious bagels when they had a little corner in The Elbow Room on Park Street. It's even nicer knowing that they are young and local guys working hard and being successful! I always intend to take photos of our food before I shove it in my face, but when it arrives I fully forget about any previous plans or the future and just go right ahead and start devouring the food. But rest assured it was delicious!


Rob returned to work and we started out on our little adventure. We walked back to the centre and along the harbour side looking at the boats and chasing pigeons. Theo ran along the lines of the cobbled streets imagining them to be train tracks, and trying to spot the Cranky cranes along the docks.

We crossed the bridge and ran along the real train tracks by the Mshed museum, under the towering cranes, jumping from one track to the other. It started to rain so we took shelter in the museum and went to visit the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition. We had fun spotting the animals, but he obviously doesn't have the patience to look at each photograph properly, and was a lot more entertained by looking at the insects through a magnifying glass, dressing up and pressing buttons to produce some animal sounds, all of which were great features added to the exhibition (which makes me not feel so annoyed at having to pay £3 when it used to be free!)

After we'd had our fill of photographs and animal noises we had a little look around the museum once more before finally resting with cup of tea and a biscuit.

 We made our way back to the bus as dusk was creeping in, and with himself snuggled into my lap Theo fell asleep almost instantly. It was a fun little day out with my little friend and is something I know we need to do more often, get out of the house, away from things that 'need' doing and just enjoy our time together, because before long he'll be at school and I'll wish we had back the time where we could fill our days with little adventures, just me and him.

me and him

zSMnAe on Make A Gif, Animated Gifs



Rob was working all this weekend so I decided that I would have a little adventure, just Theo and I. We haven't been to the Zoo for a while, well not this zoo for just over a year! So I scraped together some pennies and treated us to a day out!

Theo's obsession with animals is pretty big at the moment, so I thought he would enjoy going even more now that he is a lot more aware of where we are, and what he's seeing compared to when he was six months! He loved pointing at all the animals, saying 'oh look' and getting very excited. We saw the lions getting fed, went to see the baby giraffe and zebra, Theo did his elephant impression when we saw the rhinos, we went on a tractor ride, petted some donkeys, had a staring competition with some alpacas, watched the chimps play and had a picnic. It was a fun day, tiring, as someone wanted to be carried for most of it, but good. Once again it felt nice to be out doing something fun with my boy, without feeling self conscious that it was just me alone.


















I like these little outings that Theo and I share together, most of time in the week we go places where I meet up with friends or to playgroups, where as soon as I let him down he's off running around and playing, with the only the occasional wave back to me, or a whinge. So it's actually really nice to spend the day just me and him with no-one else. We can talk and share food, and he likes to point out all the things he sees. Not saying they're all rosy and great ALL of the time, he's still a whingebag, but on the whole we have a pretty good time together.

me and him

zSMnAe on Make A Gif, Animated Gifs



Rob was working all this weekend so I decided that I would have a little adventure, just Theo and I. We haven't been to the Zoo for a while, well not this zoo for just over a year! So I scraped together some pennies and treated us to a day out!

Theo's obsession with animals is pretty big at the moment, so I thought he would enjoy going even more now that he is a lot more aware of where we are, and what he's seeing compared to when he was six months! He loved pointing at all the animals, saying 'oh look' and getting very excited. We saw the lions getting fed, went to see the baby giraffe and zebra, Theo did his elephant impression when we saw the rhinos, we went on a tractor ride, petted some donkeys, had a staring competition with some alpacas, watched the chimps play and had a picnic. It was a fun day, tiring, as someone wanted to be carried for most of it, but good. Once again it felt nice to be out doing something fun with my boy, without feeling self conscious that it was just me alone.


















I like these little outings that Theo and I share together, most of time in the week we go places where I meet up with friends or to playgroups, where as soon as I let him down he's off running around and playing, with the only the occasional wave back to me, or a whinge. So it's actually really nice to spend the day just me and him with no-one else. We can talk and share food, and he likes to point out all the things he sees. Not saying they're all rosy and great ALL of the time, he's still a whingebag, but on the whole we have a pretty good time together.