Monday, 21 September 2009

Just like the old days. Sort of...

So we got back from Spain on Friday and had a really nice time. Our friends, Sarah and Hamish, along with Sadie, their beautiful seven month old baby and Sarah's dad (sorry don't know his age) had been at the villa for a week beforehand and then Sarah's father went home and we joined the three remaining Tullochs. We've been to the villa a few times with them and there are a few special moments of each day that we all remember fondly. These include the morning breakfast followed by sunbathing session, Hamish and me playing table tennis in the garage or kerbie (where you have to bounce a ball off the opposite side of the pool so you can catch the rebound, ideally without having to jump in to do so), eating at the beach and most of all, watching the sun go down with a glass or two whilst the bbq is getting up to temperature.

For the most part we got to do all of that so it felt just like the good old days. Holidaying with kids isn't so much hassle at all when you're with friends and the space to get on with it. Having the villa makes like so much easier, I think a hotel holiday is some years off for us just because of the logistics of it all. In a villa you're at home...make as much mess and noise as you want and spread out without worrying about the other guests and how pissed off they're getting.

I love the idea of going on a Mark Warner type holiday when they're older so they can meet other children in kids' clubs but for now, until they'll actually remember I can't really see the point in the extra money. Jake has less than a year of free (still £25) flying left so we need to make the most of it. He's been on six flights in his short life so far and even though he had a few moments on the way home, he was been as good as gold as we could have hoped for.

I used to get so stressed in airports to my lack of patience but now, because I know that things will be more difficult, I've chilled out a lot. Travelling with kids is basically as much hassle as you want to make it; by accepting that there's more stuff and things will take longer you can actually make it a lot easier. Getting wound up and shouting a lot (very much my previous M.O) just winds you up even more. I'm really pleased (smug even) that I've managed to calm down (with the exception of my ridiculous over charging by Ryan Air) whilst going through airports. Maybe I've matured or maybe the bastards have just ground me down.

We took Jake to the beach a couple of times, the second more successful than the first as it wasn't quite so sweltering. He could crawl along - forgot to mention that he learnt to do proper grown up hands and knees crawling while we were on holiday - almost until he was at someone else's sun lounger before we'd have to go get him. He did put his entire face in the sand at one point but this taught him that sand doesn't taste too good and tends also to block the nose.

He had a cold virtually all week but seemed in good spirits as did Sadie. They both slept well on the whole and I think the pair of them got something from spending lots of time together. I think they'll be great friends and I cannot wait to see them wanting to spend all day long on the beach while Hamish and I sit watching them all day from the bar!

I remember writing in this post about how the new Spain, i.e the one with Jake wasn't as much fun as the old Spain, the Peseta one. Well it's still not the same but then neither are any of us. In fact I don't think we'd have wanted to go to the foam party last week anyway. It was nice to wake up without a hangover (or at least with one which only lasted an hour or two) and this is basically because instead of opening bottles three and four and turning in at 3am, we were all sound asleep by midnight. It sounds sad and I do wish we were a bit crazier but when you know you're only ever a scream away from a 5am start to your day, the motivation to stay up all night tends to wane somewhat.

Anyway, it was a great trip and exactly what I needed after the weekend of drunkenness in Ibiza the week before. It's going to be brilliant to go back year after year and see how Jake's take on our favourite part of the world develops.

I'll post some photos when I get a minute.

In other news we got our official invite to the Smile Train evening whilst we were away and we're very much looking forward to it. More about that in the run up to the event.

Yesterday was also the combined NCT babies first birthday party. Time truly has flown, we've know these seven other couples for well over a year now and it feels like a lot longer in some cases. I know I've said it a few times, but it really was the best thing we could have done to find so many decent, like minded people going through the same period of their lives at the same time as us.

Lastly, and by far most importantly, our great friends Rob and Josie had their second boy pop into the world last week. So hello to George Jacobs, (already sounds like a proper, traditional English gent) and congratulations to Rob and Josie but also to Oliver who has a little brother to boss around. It looks, like predicted at their scans, that George has Down's Syndrome. More about that later as I want to learn about it, however the Jacobs' are well ready for this. Their journey, whilst certainly different to that of others at times, will be just as engaging, hard work, wonderful, emotionally draining and ultimately rewarding as any other. Good luck to them.

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