Road Trip to the National Space Centre


Charlotte and I had a well deserved day out yesterday.

We had nothing planned for the weekend and, because Charlotte’s theme at school is Space and because we’ve watched, what seems like 101 experiments with Tim Peake and Chris Hadfield on YouTube over the past couple of weeks, I’d decided we’d have an educational jaunt to the National Space Centre which is, handily, less than an hour away from us. Despite this, I’m pretty sure the last time I went was when I was doing ‘Space’ in school and we got to go on a field trip so it’s been a while!

To be honest it was surprising we actually made it there at all. I’d threatened to not go so many times during the multiple tantrums this week. If she didn’t get her shoes on, if she didn’t stop pulling the dogs collar or if she didn’t stop singing ‘oh my gosh, look at her butt’ on the walk home from school over and over again.  

Because of this, and the hilarious notion that I might, one day follow through with my threats, I didn’t book online. 


Tip No 1. Book online. 

The tickets are no cheaper granted, but the queues are definitely smaller!

At £14 for an adult and £11 for children 5-16 (under 5s go free) it’s cheaper than a theme park and way more interesting with loads to do and see. I thought it was good value anyway but you can also turn your day pass into an annual pass for £0 extra! Bargain! 

Tip no 2: Check the website to see what’s on before you go.

The centre have lots of special events on over weekends and holidays which is great but if you add the word ‘Lego’ to any event I think you are guaranteed to triple your normal visitor rate which is what had happened this weekend. 

There were a few interactive bits within the Lego area but there were also lots of amazing, intricate models with signs saying ‘Do Not Touch’ which is just calling out for a toddler to grab half of a Death Star or something don’t you think? 

The centre also have evening talks and film nights I found out whilst standing in the queue for tickets. I’m quite excited by the idea of Starship Troopers in the planetarium. The most cheesy space film ever and a very guilty pleasure of mine and my brother’s. 

Tip no 3: Take your own lunch if going at peak times.

Unfortunately, due to the Lego invasion, the small cafe was having trouble keeping up and sandwiches were being made in the back no quicker than they were disappearing off the shelves. However, after the queuing we asked whether they did any gluten free options (I did have some snacks just in case) and we were told they could make it fresh and we could have any of the non-gluten fillings. One fresh ham sandwich scoffed so quickly I had to ask what bread they used as Charlotte never eats sandwiches! 

So, after our first trip and after my mind was completely blown learning about just how many stars are in the Milky Way (approximately 200 billion) and just how ridiculously huge the known universe is in the amazing planetarium, we came home knackered but very happy and we will definitely be back soon. 

Ps. The National Space Centre has not paid me to review our day, we just had a good time! 

 

Advertisements

Fun Friday – review of Finding Dory

It does feel a little bit like the summer holidays over here even though Charlotte will still be going to nursery for four more weeks. We have fun things planned for our Friday’s off (Fun Friday’s if you will), we have all our weekends together booked up with people to see and places to go and a few days spare to still enjoy the sun which will hopefully decide to stick around a bit longer. (It is however raining as I write this!)

 

For our first Fun Friday of then summer we decided to go and see Disney Pixar’s Finding Dory movie.  It was released today so the cinema was busy but we went to the early showing so still had enough room to move (well I could have if Charlotte hadn’t insisted on sitting on my lap throughout). Click here for the link to the trailer.

 

image

 

 

I was was looking forward to a light, hilarious caper with a small amount of mild peril as per the previous film Finding Nemo, which I may or may not have owned before Charlotte was even a twinkle in the postmans eye (not really if my ex reads my blog!).  We’ve recently seen The Secret Life of Pets and before that Zootropolis which we both loved.

 

But…

 

…oh how wrong I was though. For a U rating this had some really adult themes and I’m actually quite shocked.  I’ve always loved Disney/Pixar collaborations for the great mix of children’s humour with a smattering of ‘over the kids heads’ jokes for the poor parents having to watch yet another U or PG rated film, but this was severely lacking in the humour.  Yes, there was some funny seals for about four minutes. There was a crazy bird. An octopus gets splatted a couple of times but the rest just felt a bit angsty.

 

I won’t spoil the story for you in case you decide to see it but the vague gist is that Dory is on a quest to find her long lost parents. Cue flashbacks of cute baby Dory with parents, flashbacks of baby Dory trying to make friends but failing. Cue tears from me (although I cry at everything nowadays) and a very confused, emotional four year old.

 

I have to say I was quite disappointed with the film after waiting so long for the sequel to one of my most favourite kid’s films. So maybe save the £20 for another film or something else that won’t leave you having to console your child and secretly having to find the tissues too.  We went to our free art gallery after the film which Charlotte seemed much more enthralled about.

 

image
Charlottes drawing the ‘lady with boobies’ (not its official title) at the Royal Pump Rooms Art Gallery in Leamington Spa

 

 

Tipping the scales.

What a difference a year makes. The cardigan can only hide so much!

I’ve joined Weight Watchers…again. I know, I know, I said I’d never do it, but the scales had ticked over to my dreaded number and I had to take action. 

It was the number that makes me say “No more”. 

The number that makes me say “Katie, what the hell are you playing at?”. 

The number that makes me run to the nearest Weight Watchers meeting to declare allegiance to the points system and swear never to eat peanut butter again. 

So back I am, handing money over to a not particularly slim woman to tell me how much I weigh on her scales, which seem to be completely different to those I have at home. 

Talk about a way to boost self esteem on a Wednesday lunch time. 

Back I go to trying really hard until about 3pm when my brain says “but chocolate would taste soooo good right now”. 

Back I go, four weeks in wondering whether I should just stay the slightly frumpy size I am because being on a diet is, let’s face it, boring and hard. 

I must admit though I’m having some difficulty with getting into the swing of it this time. 

I have realised since my last stint, thanks to the joy of articles posted on Facebook (that’s how everyone does their research right??) that most fat isn’t actually bad for you and low fat products are probably worse.  

I’ve realised that ‘diet’ drinks generally contain some rubbish sweeteners which, let’s face it, aren’t great for you and don’t taste good. (The research on how bad they actually are for you differs greatly however). 

I’ve realised that I have no time for cooking lovely meals when I get home because if I don’t get Charlotte in bed by 7.15 bedtime is fucked until about 11pm and I’m ready to kill. 

I’ve also realised that trying to loose weight on a diet whilst also trying to get my head around a gluten free diet is pretty impossible. 

I’ve also realised (although I did know this before) that cooking for one is utterly shit and generally ends in loads of food waste, a fairly dull meal and usually a way too late dinner time so I don’t enjoy it anyway. 

So I have to find away to get through the next two months (it was a three month pass) and lose weight without following the plan at all. Easy huh!

The reason for this particular blog post with added awful photos is so I have some accountability, other than lying to the woman who asks me how my weeks been every week. 
I will get back to feeling happy and healthy in my own skin and now is the time to do it…just maybe not how the slimming clubs would want me to do it. 

Still not perfect but way less lumps and bumps than now!

Can it be done? Share your hints and tips in the comments please! You’re all in the circle of trust now  (mines quite a round circle at the mo!), I need your help! 

Why I love Warwickshire

I’m such a fair weather blogger or maybe the opposite of that. I feel at home posting when everything’s going wrong but the past couple of weeks have been really good and I have realised just how much I love the place I live. 

My house is starting to look how I want it (if you remove the clutter, but let’s be realistic here!). 

My overgrown, but actually quite pretty garden.
I have some beautiful parks close by, perfect to escape with a crazy four year old to burn off some energy. 

New park on Chase Meadow
I have some gorgeous National Trust properties close by, and now I’m a member we have free reign of all of them. 

Charlecote Park and House
My town hosts some amazing events, food festivals, Thai festivals, film festivals, chocolate festivals and next month a chilli festival! 

Warwick Food Festival
I have some amazing independent restaurants, cafes and bars to eat and drink. 

Coffee Architects in Leamington Spa
I have a great network of friends and when I finally get my bum in a gear a great network to support small businesses. 

Networking , training and friends in Warwickshire
We also have one of the largest castles in England which means the town in steeped in history and William Shakespeare resided in a town not far away. 

Bird of Prey display at Mary Arden’s Farm
Sometimes you’re just too busy dashing around to actually notice the things around you and I have recently realised just how lucky I am to live here. I ❤️ Warwickshire. (The tourist board can pay me later)

BuzzFeed made me do it.

buzzfeedI love those BuzzFeed lists. Especially the ones where it mentions somewhere local to you or a place you’ve been, or things you remember in the 90’s…and their quizzes (that I never share the answers to because they’re too true and my parents are on Facebook) and their videos about how to create a perfect fishtail plait (still not perfected it).  But I have found that checking your Facebook feed at 11.30pm on a Sunday and clicking on a BuzzFeed list, when you should really be in bed asleep, is not a good plan.

10 Gorgeous Bras.

Ooo, I thought, I love a gorgeous bra. Click.

  1. Nice
  2. Nice (if you have no boobs)
  3. Nice if you don’t have to wear anything over it
  4. Nice (if you have no boobs)
  5. Nice (if you are a size zero and have no boobs)
  6. Nice
  7. Ooo, really nice…’You can get this from Ann Summers’…click, damn it- didn’t mean to click that link…
  8. Ooo more nice bras…
  9. Ooo a sale…
  10. A sale that is only on for another 30 mins!!
  11. ‘Type in your bra size’…type, type, click,
  12. Ooo bras in my size!! (doesn’t often happen)
  13. Ooo, I like that one
  14. Ooo they have matching knickers
  15. Ooo, they’re in the sale
  16. Ooo, Add to basket, click, click…
  17. Well I might as well have a look at the rest of what they have on offer…
  18. Ooo, Add to basket, click
  19. Ooo, Add to basket, click…
  20. Checkout, ah well I don’t have my card on me so never…
  21. Ooo pay by PayPal, enter password, click, click, confirm order, click.

And that, my friends is why you should not read BuzzFeed posts late at night and, why I had to go and collect a large parcel from my new neighbours this evening which, not so subtly, said it was from GOLD GROUP HOUSE and to send any returns to AS Ltd.