Thursday, 27 May 2010

Holiday - day 9

Today we are in Estonia. We started our tour by looking round the old part of Tallinn, and then boarded a coach to go visit a farm in the country where they make cheese. While there, we looked round the dairy and sampled some of their cheeses. Then finally we went back into the outskirts of Tallinn to look round a typical home. We were made very welcome by Peter the taxi driver, who let us look round his home, and then told us about his life while we enjoyed coffee and cake in his garden.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Holiday - day 8

Today is our second day in Russia, and we have decided to split up into groups. Mollie and Guy have gone on 2 tours, a walking tour in the morning, and then a trip by hydrofoil over to see the Fountains at Peterhof.

Hannah and I opted for a long, one day tour to visit the Romanov palaces, firstly Catherine's Palace, then Alexander's Palaces, and then after lunch, Paul's palace in Palovsk.

The weather was terrible, we are all now the proud owners of Russian umberella's, but the sights soon made up for that.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Holiday - day 7

Today is our first day in Russia, in St Petersburg. We can't get off the ship and wander about like we have in the other ports, we have to go as part of a group because of our visa's.

We opted to go on a tour called Modern Russia, which took us on the metro, then to a market and finished off with coffee and cakes in a cafe. Once we got into the metro station we were thankful that we had a guide with us, we would never have managed to navigate around - we are not good at languages at the best of time, let alone when we don't even recognise the letters.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Holiday - day 6

Today we are in Helsinki. It's our first visit to Finland, but none of the ships tours took our fancy so we opted instead to meet up with a colleague of Guy's who took out for a traditional Finnish meal. We all tried reindeer, and we disapointed to find that it tastes pretty much the same as beef - well at least it didn't taste of chicken.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Holiday - day 5

Today we are in Stockholm and we have forgone sightseeing to meet up with our Swedish friend Jenny and her three lovely children, Lucas, Beppe and Frode. The weather was not on our side, so our original plan for a picnic in the park had to be abandond, but Mollie and the boys really enjoyed the oppertunity to go look round the toy shop and they all came away with treats.

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Holiday - day 4

Today was another sea day, as we moved from Copenhagen to Stockholm, so we enjoyed more of the onboard facilities of the ship.

Close to midnight we headed up to the top deck at the front to the ship to watch as we went under the Great Belt Bridge. The sea was amazingly calm, and it was very quiet and dark - almost eerie. We could see the bridge from quite a distance away, but has no way to judge distance. Eventually we went under it, and although the Captain assured us that we had 10m clearence, it certainly didn't look like that, and we weren't the only ones who ducked.

Friday, 21 May 2010

Holiday - day 3

Today we are in Copenhagen. The girls and I have been here before so we decided not to go on one of the ships tours, but to get off and go on the standard Copenhagen tour bus. We caught it on the dock so it was quite straight forward, but were quite disappointed to find that the Little Mermaid is also on holiday, she has gone on a tour of China.

We stopped off near Tivoli gardens to have lunch and then got back to the ship in plenty of time for departure.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Holiday - day 2

Today was a sea day as the ship made it's way toward Copenhagen. Once we had worked out where everything was on the ship the girls went for a swim. Then Hannah went to get her hair done in the spa, ready for formal night. Both girls looked very grown up when they were dressed for dinner

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Holiday - day 1

We boarded the Jewel of the Seas today. Once we got through the long queues at check in we made our way to our cabin, and were pleasently surprised how spacious it was.

Once we had unpacked it was time for lifeboat drill, then we went back to the cabin to change for dinner. We had a pretty relaxed day, and tomorrow will be nice too as it is a day at sea.

Friday, 14 May 2010

Holiday - Setting off

Following last months holiday disater we once again set off on holiday, this time heading for Harwich to catch a ship to Scandinavia. Not having a flight to catch means the only restriction on luggage is what we can get in the car - I think we did well.

From home we are heading off, calling in Lincolnshire at Auntie Wee's 50th birthday party and then we are having a couple of days at Guy's mum's before boarding the ship on Wednesday

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Beach day

The home ed group met up on the beach today. The smaller children really enjoyed climbing amongst the rocks and gathering drift wood.
The older children then really enjoyed sitting round the fire we made from it, cooking sausages and toasting marshmallows.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Pizza Box Maps

We all got together at Sarah M's house and made pizza box maps, and idea we shamelessly stole from some other enterprising mum

Once the children had chosen their countries we printed off maps and then transfered them to the pizza boxes by rubbing pencil on the back and tracing over them.

Then we painted the sea around the countries and once the paint had dried the children began building up the land mass with layers of salt dough.

Eventually they finished off by adding geographical features like mountain ranges, and then left them to dry.

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Georgian Drinks

While shopping today we bought some cordials for our Georgian Living experiment. Given that we are only going back in time for a week, and we are the only ones, we have to try find some modern products we can use in lieu of last years preserving.

Obviously Diet Coke is out, so we are trying other drinks, Mollie quite liked Elderflower and the rosehip brought back memories for me of the baby juice my brother used to drink.

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Litter Picking

Today the girls were litter picking with the Guides. They went to the nearby village of Pettinan, and worked hard for three hours in the cold and drizzzle.

It was part of the National Spring Clean organised by Keep Scotland Tidy, and the girls were rewarded for their hard work with cakes supplied by Greggs the bakers. They also got one section of the four part special centenary badge that the Scottish Guides are giving this year.