A few weeks ago we went on holiday to Pembrokeshire (Wales) to visit family; I grew up there and often get this relentless itch to go back, breath in some coastal air and appreciate the beautiful Welsh coastline. I’m so lucky to be able to stay with family and have seen first hand that Pembrokeshire, and particularly Dale, is a fantastic destination for a family holiday.

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Dale Pembrokeshire

Dale lies about 25 minutes from Haverfordwest and about 15 minutes from Milford Haven. Set on a peninsular, it has two beaches: a safe family beach and a more adventurous surf beach within walking distance.



With a waterfront Watersports Centre which offers tuition in sailing, kayaking, surfing and more, there is so much on offer for almost every age.


There are some fantastic walks around the coastal path, as well as geocaching dotted around the village. If you’re feeling adventurous and want to catch your supper – you can even go on fishing trips from here.


Whilst the beach isn’t sandy, it is relatively safe and there are rock-pools on one side and a pontoon which is perfect for crabbing, on the other.

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The beach is just as lovely in the Winter and almost completely deserted! I took Teddy and Arthur down here when Teddy was just a tiny one and there’s something so special about getting all wrapped up and going to the beach.


Also in Dale, there is a lovely crafts centre  which offers afternoon teas and a number of galleries/ art exhibitions.



There are a number of options here: a fantastic Seafood restaurant/Pub, The Griffin Inn, which is right on the waterfront where you can have either a bowl of chips overlooking the sea, or a special meal if you fancy fine dining in their contemporary extension.





There is also a great waterfront café and another restaurant and café in the Yacht Club (The Moorings) which has stunning sea views.



There are plenty of options, either within Dale itself, or in the surrounding area. I would recommend checking out Spinnaker Reach, or Allenbrook for Bed and Breakfast.

If you are looking for a holiday cottage to rent, have a look on Coastal Cottages website to see what suits you.  For campers – go check Point Farm.

So you if you are thinking of holidaying in the UK – do check out this hidden little secret near where I grew up. It the above doesn’t sell it to you, then maybe this will…

Dale also really knows how to throw a party. I was down here for the Queen’s Jubilee and it was just brilliant. There are often events for August bank holiday, Halloween and even New Years Eve.


*Please note that this is not a sponsored most and is 100% based on my own opinions. 

Packing my Suitcase

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

 Back in February, we took our youngest one, Teddy, for a fleeting visit to Brussels to catch up with our friends, Lara and Hugo, and their adorable little one, Sarah.

There’s no reason why you can’t take a baby into Central Brussels, so that’s where we went on our first day.

First stop – Jardin du Petit Sablon – this is is a delightful little garden which is buggy/stroller friendly and surrounded by beautiful architecture. It’s worth stopping here to take in the historical significance of these two counts who resisted the Spaniards.

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Obviously, as I have two boys, we had to go and see the Manneken Pis which although surprisingly small, for such a petite fellow, he has a huge wardrobe which is apparently changed all the time. Hah I’ve just read that back – did you think I was going to say ‘wardrobe’?

It was nice to see some murals dotted around the city – this Tin Tin one being my favourite of the ones we spotted, given its Belgian origins.


On a practical note… if you want to take a buggy/stroller around central Brussels, I’d recommend one with chunky wheels, rather than a small collapsible. There are lots of cobbles to navigate!

Alternatively, wearing your little one in a carrier would be ideal whilst walking around appreciating some of the impressive historical architecture, such as the Grand Place.


After such a lovely stroll (and naps en route for the babies), we were all getting peckish and so headed to Chicago Café – a kiddy/baby friendly eatery in Brussels centre.

And wow… forget worrying about whether your child will be bored, adequately catered for or comfy – this is the perfect family friendly restaurant/ Café. There are ample toys, books and high chairs. A great children’s menu and it’s buzzing with so many other families that you won’t worry if your little one is loud at all.

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The next day, we ventured a little further from the centre and went on a perfectly buggy/stroller friendly stroll around the lake at Park De Tervuren, before having a delicious lunch at another family friendly restaurant, Bootkeshuis, which is within the park.

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The babies loved their lunch here – and yay the oh so familiar IKEA highchairs were on hand for their little derrières.

On our last day, we head out for a another walk around the grounds of Château De La Hulpe – another stunning location – just watch out as to where you take a stroller/buggy – you may have to double back on yourself to stay on flat ground.

The grounds here are so beautiful though and it is free to enter, so who cares if you can’t do a perfect circuit with a stroller hey?

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We had a lovely fleeting visit to Brussels and would love to see more in the future. 
This post was due to go live last week, but I’ve delayed posting because of the recent attacks.  However, I wouldn’t be put off from visiting Brussels because of what has happened – life goes on and all we can do is be vigilant whilst travelling. 
Packing my Suitcase

Once upon a time gone by, there was a Mummy, a Daddy and two little wild things. One day, when they were feeling rather brave and in need of chaos,  they embarked on an epic American adventure. They journeyed across oceans and mountains, desserts and cities;  they boarded planes, boats and even free willed travelling devices.

Of all the places they ventured though, Portland was absolutely their favourite, albeit the wettest. Not only did they find other wild things to play with, but it felt like home. Normality. Family.


Their time traveling and living on the road had come to an end and this was exactly what was needed. The Mummy and the Daddy had a date day and the wild ones actually slept right through the nights until reasonable o’clock.

Obviously you need at least one drama to make a good story and the eldest wild one helped out with this by locking himself inside a windowless toilet room with the light off. Thankfully, it was only the door handle which had to be removed and not the whole door. And a realisation of just how feral the boy is was realised by the surprisingly calm state he remained in for the whole episode!

The food was incredibly edible. Who knew that heaven came in Voo-Doo Doughnut form?

They happened upon the best bookshop in the whole wide world. Honestly that is officially true – the Guardian even says so! And we say “happened”, but given the Mummy’s inclination to thoroughly research these matters, such discovery was not accidental.


(Purchases from Powell’s, City of Books)

And even though the rain kept on a-coming, this did not dampen their spirits. Lazy days were loved, books were read, fun was found, and even more glorious food was gobbled.


(A rainy afternoon spent drinking coffee and playing in Munchkin Playland)



(A brilliant day at Portland Children’s Museum)
(Breakfast at Mother’s Bistro)

And when there was a break in the weather, breathtaking waterfalls were to be seen.

 (Multnomah Falls)


The eldest wild one loved being so close to the spray.



(The stunning view from Vista House)

But as all great things do, their visit came to an all too hasty end and now the Mummy and Daddy are left happily reminiscing and planning their next escapade to the Land of the Free.


Travel Monkey

There’s something about San Francisco which you can’t help but fall in love with. It sucks you into its crazy community of contrasts and contradictions. No wonder the Beatnik kids and other non-conformists flocked to this place. There’s something for everyone: for normals and crazies alike, for foodies, shopaholics, art fanatics, bibliophiles; for jazz lovers, history buffs, sport nuts, wave riders, horticulturists …everyone.

You can walk along the beach in the morning watching gnarly surfers – seriously the waves here are extreme. Followed by a delicious brunch in Cole Valley (the best pancakes in the world are at Zazie).
Then to Golden Gate Park for a stroll around the Rose Garden or a cup of tea at the Japanese Garden.
 Go ride on the historic carousel; let your toddler burn off steam in the Children’s Quarter.


Take a drive across the incredible Golden Gate Bridge and view the man made from the hills.
Shop in and around Union Square (if you’re a millionaire). Walk along Haight Street for some hippy, indie culture. There’ll be at least one guy doing reflective dance in a seemingly complete state of meditation!
Go to the heart of the beatnik scene and visit City Lights Bookstore (aka Amanda’s Heaven) and then eat proper Italian pizza in North Beach. Drink where Jack Kerouac drank.



Everywhere is close and easy to get to. We didn’t get lost and we didn’t experience annoyingly inflated city prices. Safe public transport exists (unlike some other American cities).
We weren’t pestered by street vendors or barged by irritable commuters. It’s really not like any other large-scale city I’ve ever been to and I’m trying, but no doubt failing, to do it justice in this post.
Despite San Francisco’s wonder, the extent of the poverty and drugs is sadly surprising; and in such proximity to the wealthy shopping and tourist areas. To step over or meander around the sleeping or unconscious homeless; to hear the screams of a young and dangerously dishevelled woman, walking along a busy street in just shorts and a bra, dragging a blanket behind her. To see an old man crouched down, shivering and rocking, clutching two small knives. To witness people preparing drugs on the pavements. It’s shocking and way more prevalent than anything I’ve ever seen on the streets of cities like London or New York.
But that’s almost part of San Francisco’s charm. The suffering and the extremes inspire the musicians, writers and artists. You can spend a whole day marvelling the murals around the city – street art which is alive and ever evolving.


San Francisco, you seduced me, scared me, amazed me, shocked me & fed me very, very well indeed. I will unquestionably be back.


Packing my Suitcase

Darling Arthur,

I’m sorry that you won’t remember the wonderfully intimidating Big Sur – the lashing of the waves threatening the canyons below ominous bridges, or the towering gargantuan redwoods watching over us as we slept.


I’m sorry that you won’t remember how excited you were to see a blazing campfire for the first time.
I’m sorry that for you, watching the magnificent sun-set though port holes of an old water tower turned café, was no more stimulating than a regular trip out for lunch back home.


I’m sorry that we made you walk along yet another trail to see yet another beach.
I’m sorry that your experience of the fantastically daunting drive along this part of the Pacific Coast Highway was somewhat tedious as the laptop battery ran out interrupting Fireman Sam mid episode.
I’m sorry that you wouldn’t have noticed how happy Mummy and Daddy were here – to see the wonder in your eyes as you scrutinised rock pools, to hear your blissful squeals whilst running through waves and your little songs as you danced around our campfire with your torch searching for a real life bear.
How happy we were to have some time together as you and your even more feral little brother lay abnormally peaceful in the RV and we sat under the stars, alongside the trees, wishing we had just one more log to lay on the dying fire.
Perhaps one day we’ll bring you back here – when you’re old enough to appreciate how Big Sur truly is one of the most amazing places on this earth.
Love you more than bookshops,
Mummy xx
P.S Maybe these photographs will stir a little happy memory from your time here.









Travel Monkey