Monday, 13 April 2009

Our Mini Holiday

So that we could go to the Bloggy Picnic we had a mini holiday last week which ended up being a trip down memory lane!

I originally come from Hampshire and moved up to Durham with my parents when I was 17. I think it has been nearly 10 years since I went "back home" and so we decided it was time the children saw where I grew up.

We stayed in a Travelodge near Newbury for 3 nights at an incredibly reasonable price as all 5 of us were allowed to stay in one family room (some Travelodges let you have 5 in, some don't - I've learnt to always check first!).

On the first evening, although we were meant to be meeting BIG sister Ally and her lovely family for supper at 7, I took the children to see the school I went to from 11-16, and where I amazingly ended up being Head Girl! (It was a very small school, so there weren't many to choose from!) I absolutely LOVED school and cried bucketloads of tears when we all left after our O'levels (unfortunately it didn't have a 6th form) so it was lovely to go back and see it looking as gorgeous as ever.

I then took decided we needed to go on a "little drive" which ended up with us going back to the village I grew up in which very nearly made us late for BIG Sis - scary!

It hasn't changed at all - there are so many gorgeous houses, and I was delighted to see that the bourne - the stream that runs through the valley - was up. It's a curious stream that only comes up when the water table rises to sufficient level and it always used to be one of the highlights of the year when you heard "The bourne is up".

What was even more amazing is that the "Rec" - the park next to the little village school I went to - still had the same roundabout, see-saw and slide (all refurbished) as when I was a child. It had lots of new things too, but the bits I remembered were all still there 20 years later!

The children loved it and we had to drag them away to go and meet Ally and co. in Newbury for supper. This meant that I had no difficulty getting them back there the next day and so I was able to show them all my old paths and secret places in the village.

We also called to see an old family friend and she insisted that we should let her contact the people living in our old house so that we could go and see it again. This wasn't my plan at all as I have missed that house terribly ever since we left and even the thought of it used to make me cry so actually going back in was potentially too upsetting. But our friend insisted that the owners would love us to see it so it was arranged.

Amazingly, going back didn't upset me at all and I think I finally feel happy about the house rather than bereft! The owners were absolutely lovely and we stayed for an hour looking round the house and garden and telling the children about all the things we used to get up to - along the lines of "that's the chimney we used to climb".........."this is the airing cupboard I used to hide in to read"............... "we used to climb out of this window and along that roof.........." and so on.

So many things had stayed the same and the things that had changed didn't matter. It was brilliant! And now I feel I can let go of my gorgeous childhood home.

Sorry - bit of a long ramble there!

More importantly, Tuesday was also the day that Missus Moogsmum and I had arranged to meet up. After trying various other locations which all turned out to be closed - although we did find the perfect storage option for Fred and the Sausage Monster

we eventually took the Moogs Family back to "my village" to play in the Rec - I think my children must have planned that all along!

It was freezing but the children played happily for ages while Lesley showed me how to make some crochet flowers - so I told her what colours I wanted and sent her home to make me a brooch ready for the next day - and she did!

She also gave me some eggs from her lovely hens!

After Lesley and the Moogschildren went home we lent Dot to BIG sis for the night and went back to the Travelodge.

The next day was the Bloggy Picnic so you know all about that.

And then on Thursday we came home - but before we left we went to visit my lovely friend from school who I haven't seen for about 11 years (not since Dot was a tiny baby). It was brilliant to see her and to meet her children for the first time and I really don't want it to be another 11 years before we see them again!

We then had the perfect ending to a lovely holiday............................ a 7 and a half hour journey home in Bank Holiday traffic with 3 children who didn't go to sleep at all! Great!

Lucy x


Thimbleanna said...

It looks like you and the little Lockets had a lovely holiday! I love the pretty little brooch that Lesley made for you!

Gina said...

What a wonderful trip for you all. I imagine you were exhausted when you got home.

Ali said...

I hadn't realized it had been so long since you last visited. Funny thing, showing your children your childhood haunts isn't it?

Rachel said...

How lovely that you were able to visit your childhood home. Sounds like you had a wonderful time!

Kitty said...

I saw you wearing that pretty crochet brooch - I thought you'd made it. Well done Lesley - it was gorgeous.

So nice to hear that you went down memory lane and came back out of it as a smiley person, not a sad one.


dottycookie said...

Other than the journey, it sounds just about perfect! We diverted to drive past my old house in South London recently - from birth till 24. Rather a lot of memories there!

JuliaB said...

Hi Lucy
Lovely to see the pics that went with your story. Isn't it good that the rec had the same things after 20 years! One day I will go back to my childhood haunts but they are in scotland so quite a long way to go. I wonder if 'our' rec has the same stuff too ... or will it be a housing estate? One of my 'homes' is. Hmm. you've got me thinking now! x

silverpebble said...

Wow, it looks as though you travelled the whole length of memory lane here Lucy. Wonderful to take the little Lockets there with you! Sorry the journey back was quite so long - ugh. Emma x

marit said...

How fun to read about your "memory lane"! My sister now lives in the house where I grew up, the kids and I are going home in about two weeks time to celebrate my niece's confirmation. At least 12 hours in the way....

Lovely brooch!

Christy said...

I know what you mean about ones childhood home. I loved where I grew up in Hertfordshire, a little village. And often wish our family still had that cottage.

Glad your family had such a good time.


quinn said...

Yesterday, on an Easter visit to my family in another part of the state, I had a sudden time-warp experience. Found myself pushing my great-nephew in a hi-tech stroller, down a street where I can remember my Grammy pushing me in a wicker pram. I can actually remember the dusty-sweet smell of the leather-covered cushions and wicker. Odd feeling!

Clever hens to mark the date on their eggs! I shall distribute pencils in the Poultry Palace tomorrow :)

est said...

very wonderful super nice trips!!!

Sew Create It - Jane said...

A lovely trip down memory lane ;o)

wonderwoman said...

wow - you certainly packed a lot in - what a lovely week! i can actually picture you as head girl!!
love the crochet - am still struggling with mine - can't wait for Mrs Moog to take me in hand!
shame about the journey home but thats just so typical really!


nicolette said...

Lovely Holiday pictures!!

Moogsmum said...

It was lovely for me to see your old haunts too - beautiful village :-)

I used to love going to visit the place where my Mum grew up, in a tiny hamlet in Shropshire with woods and a waterfall - far prettier than where I grew up!

Glad you got home safe and sound even if the journey was yuk!!


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