A few weeks ago, when Boots challenged me to "say yes to summer", the weather was grey and miserable and I wasn't sure I was ever going to be in the mood for long summer days in the sun but today is a happy day; today we are going on holiday and most definitely saying YES to the summer. I really hope you will join me and the mellow family over the next 10 days as we share photos and stories from our summer road trip.
|Lara saying "yes" to summer !|
For those of you who don't already know, Lara, Holly, myself and Mr. B. this evening will be embarking on an epic family summer holiday. We are driving across France, Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany to Poland and back over a period of 10 days. The weather is set to be fine for the next week or so and I'm hoping we will get to see Europe at its best and will have some time to get out and enjoy the sunshine. Lara can't wait. Holly has no idea what is about to happen and me... well, I'm really looking forward to it but the excitement is tempered somewhat with a little trepidation. What have we let ourselves in for?
Tonight we are staying in Ashford near Dover so that we don't have to rush for our channel ferry in the morning. We are taking a leisurely ferry crossing to Dunkirk and then heading off through northern France and Belgium into the Netherlands (a first for me and the girls) to Eindhoven. As the week progresses we have plans to visit Celle in northern Germany, the town where I was born. We are spending a long weekend relaxing and attending a family wedding in a fairy tale castle in Walbryzch, Poland before heading back next week via Bavaria and Bonn.
|umm... which one shall I take?|
There is no doubt that a 2,000 mile round trip over 10 days with an impatient 3 year old and a hungry 3 month old is going to be a challenge. This is exactly why I'm planning on sharing our travels on the blog and on ParentWheels - to demystify some of the challenges of travelling with kids. I'll be blogging as often as I can (mobile roaming wifi permitting!) and sharing our tales on twitter as @jumblyMummy and @parentWheels. Not only will we be pushing our own sanity to the limits with between 4 and 8 hours a day in the car but we will also be putting the brand new Toyota Prius+ 7-seater hybrid car to the ultimate family test. The Prius+ launches later this month in the UK and we have been asked to put it through its paces on our epic trip across the continent. Stay tuned to Parentwheels to find out whether it can cope with the demands we place on it!
The biggest demand on the car so far is luggage space. Have you any idea how much stuff you need to take on holiday for hotel stays with two girls this age??? On the list so far
- Two million changes of outfit for Holly
- Two million changes of outfit for Lara
- Two million nappies, 6 million baby wipes
- As few changes of clothes as we can get away with for me and Mr. B
- Long-lasting suncream, sunhats, umbrellas, raincoats
- Travel first aid kit
- Travel steriliser and bottle (in case of over-indulgence on my part at the wedding)
- Travel cot, inflatable toddler bed, lightweight buggy
- Wedding outfits for us all
- Camera to capture all of our family holiday moments
- Road atlas and phrase books (my polish needs a bit of polishing!)
- Travel money
|Boots and St. Johns Ambulance Travel First Aid Kit|
To top it off, several of the countries we are visiting have surprising laws about what it is you have to take with you in your car when travelling - I blogged about European Driving Law this week on ParentWheels. And so to top it all off we have our breakdown kit, breathalyser (?!) and our trusty Boots travel first aid kit which I have supplemented with a few natural first aid products of my own.
So, are you and your family ready for the summer holidays? Will you be saying "yes" to summer? Have you got a trip you are planning that is more bonkers than ours? I'd love to hear about your summer plans in the comments below.