Being one of the last counties in the country to get half term can feel a bit like punishment. Whatever our crime, we’ve well and truly paid the price. Tomorrow, we’ll finally be released. Only for a week of course, but we have grand plans nonetheless.
Three cities in one weekend
Fun days out are like buses sometimes. And in case you hadn’t noticed, I am terrible at saying no. So on Friday afternoon, my husband met me at the school to pick the girls up. We drove straight from there to Birmingham for a meet and greet with Elsa and Anna from Frozen before we watched Disney on Ice.
The girls had an incredible time there, ending up getting to bed really quite late. Despite that, we were up bright and early and heading for Blackpool in the van to review Coral Island and see the Blackpool illuminations. It was the first time I’d been, but my husband remembers it from childhood and had been wanting to take the girls there for a while.
It was a real treat for the girls to go to Blackpool and lovely for us all to stay in the van again. After that, it was time to head for Manchester to have lunch with some friends on the way home. By Sunday evening, we were all exhausted but equally refreshed and ready to face the last week before half term.
I’ve written before about my love of open water swimming. As a general rule, I stick to swimming outdoors during the summer months. I’m not quite sure what changed this year, but my friend and I have decided to keep going into the colder months. We haven’t been for a few weeks, because the river has been too high. But this week, the water level had gone down so we decided to brave a swim.
After 45 minutes in the river, we got out feeling surprisingly fine. Within five minutes though, we’d started to shiver quite violently. It took the rest of the morning to warm up properly, but it was worth every minute of feeling cold. I can totally see how swimming in open water reduces stress and improves the mood. I have been feeling so much better ever since.
I’ve also been shocked at how intense it was from an exercise point of view. We’ve previously swam in the river for around 90 minutes and have felt tired, but not exhausted. This time, we swam against the current for around 40 minutes, before turning around and swimming back. Every stroke was a struggle because the current was so strong. Couple that with the water temperature and it really was a good workout.
Thursday photo #233
After such a brilliant weekend, there were lots of photos to choose from. But I know that for the girls, meeting Anna and Elsa was a bit of a dream come true. So, here’s the photo they’ll look back on fondly.