23 September 2011

Postcard from Newcastle {and the Things I'm Loving}

"Wishing you were here..."
Isn't that what you usually write on postcards?
This one is coming to you live from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in the North East of England.
It's 8pm in the evening, Thursday night here. Weird to think that right now my friends and kiwi blogpals are awake on their Friday morning, as we are tucking up the kids in bed and settling down for the night.

So here we are on the other side of the world.
And here are all the things I'm loving so far...

Loving that we survived the Journey
Actually we did better than survive. The kids were amazing.
What a difference two years and an extra seat can make.
I did not even need to medicate.

Love my lil seasoned travellers...

No bags were abandoned in airport lounges, no passports left at check-in counters {yeah I did that once...}.
There was no pacing the aisles with a wriggling toddler or sleepless baby, no vomiting on the person in front of us, no screaming, tantrums or meltdowns of any kind.

We even got to watch movies uninterrupted!
Tiring it was. A nightmare it was not.

Loving Miss Fab enjoying her hot towel...

Not Loving Newcastle Airport.
The only blemish on the otherwise clear skin of our travel adventure? A two hour queue at passport control. No allowance made for the fact that we were the only people in the line with children. Or the only people in the line not entering the country as students with all the extra paperwork that goes with a student visa. Yeah. Not exactly the welcome we were hoping for. But still. We survived.
Wiped the kids frustrated tears away, ate leftover plane snacks, shared earbuds and listened to music on our dinky little Ipod shuffle. Eventually got our passports stamped and that was that.
We fell into the arms of our waiting family, hugs and kisses all round.
Welcome to Newcastle.
The adventure begins.

Loving Spontaneous Coolness
The day after we landed we expected we would feel like crap and not want to go anywhere. But we were surprisingly OK and the kids were bursting for some action... so we piled in the car and headed to the coast.

Did we bring any beach gear? changes of clothes? buckets or spades?
Ha! Of course not... we are jetlagged and not thinking straight.
We just turn up at the lighthouse where Mr G spots rock pools and an icecream van handily selling rockpooling gear as well as frozen treats....

Mr G wastes no time purchasing nets, buckets, spades...
{I love how he thinks of stuff like this and just does it}

I have fun following them all around, snapping pictures...
{love these holiday snap-fests}

When cousin Erin turns up with sweet baby Jack, we all fall in love...
{I also admire my hunky guy through my camera lens and think that Sophie might be right about his resemblance to Gerard Butler}

When everyone's shoes are soaked through from stepping in salty puddles we decide its time to move on...
We return our sea creatures to the wild...
...leaving nothing but footprints, taking nothing but photographs...

We say "ta ta for now" to the lighthouse and head to Tynemouth Longsands for some more photo ops...

Aint it picturesque? I love this place.
Remember it covered with snow, me and Mr G walking along it as newlyweds {watching madmen out surfing in the North Sea as the snow fell}
Ahhh the memories.

Loving Making New Memories

These images really need no words. Beach+kids=good times.
Add in a cute baby cousin, a cool "aunty" and a doting granny... magic.


While daddy is off walking Hadrians Wall we are training it around the city.

Loving catching the train everywhere.
Sort of.
It should be fun. But jetlagged kids can be unpredictable.
That's all I'm saying.
{Loving that we catch one last train tomorrow to meet up with daddy where he has promised to show us some historical sights. I love historical sights. I also love daddy. Awww shucks.}

Love the funny stuff kids come out with.
Like yesterday when Miss Fab asked politely: "Um, Grandma...? Does England have any houses that aren't all kind of stuck together...?"

Loving being likened to a celebrity...
Yeah, we had dinner at a pub the other night and this waitress comes up to me and says, "You know you really remind me of a celebrity..."
Oh shucks. I blush.
"She's an actress and a singer but I can't think of her name," she continues, "She's really famous and you look like her, but a younger version..."
Yeah I'm loving this.
"She sings, 'I am a woman in love'..."
Huh? Celine Dion?? I look nothing like Celine Dion.
"No that's it! Barbra Streisand!"
Whaaaa? Can't really say I am loving being likened to Barbra Streisand.
Do you see the resemblance?
Ha. Its funny though. Ha. Ha.

And finally.

Loving being somewhere altogether different.
Hearing that lyrical Geordie patter. The strange brands, the foreign coins.
Hanging out with family. Eating baked goods from Greggs.
And being entertained while waiting for the train by this guy and his hoarse-voiced mate...

Fruit hawkers. A stall set up at the entrance to the Metro {Train} Station.

"Apoundapoundsixbananasrealcheapforapound..." one shouts.
"Satsumaslovelysatsumashereforjustapoundapoundforsatsumas..." the other bloke chimes in.
We lean over the railings of the railway platform and look down on them, giggling, trying to figure out what they are saying...

Ahhh yes. Travel has not lost its lustre for me at all.
I love it. I revel in it. I suck it up, 4am wakings, jetlag and all.
That's what I'm loving so far on my adventures.

Along with loving reading The Help.
What a great book. I have about 30 pages left...so as soon as I post this I am off to finish it. Bliss.

What are you loving lately?

button2{I'm super pleased to be in time to link up my Loving Postcard with my friend PaisleyJade. Grateful that although this post has taken me two hours to complete the computer has managed to not crash. Grateful I have access to a computer at all even though it is the Mama Dinosaur of all Dinosaur computers...}

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Meghan Maloney Photography said...

Wow sounds like the best possible start to your holiday. Love how englishy everything looks happy sigh!

Renee said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA why hello there Barbara Streisand! I've now got that song in my head - you know - the ducksauce one or whatever. There is a thingee somewhere on the internet where you can substitute Barbara's name for your own - it's hilarious. Anyhow - random rambling aside - looks like you're having a fabulous time in the land of stuck together housing. Yay for cousin fun!!! Keep safe xxx

Leonie said...

awesome Simone, looks like you guys are having a fab time and a well deserved break.
Cant wait for more postcards.

Anonymous said...

Loving the Metro beanie!!Cute! Linda xoxo

Anonymous said...

Looks and sounds like a wonderful time so far! Hurrah for easy travel with the kiddos. ENJOY!

Ms. Kate said...

Looks like you're (and the kids especially) having a great time. Keep it up :)

Ange (Tall, Short and Tiny) said...

Sounds like the perfect start to your holiday (UK immigration aside!). Lovely photos of lovely family memories.

Jen said...

im pleased for you all
looks like your all having a wonderful time :)

i have a distant cousin who lives in Nottingham England whom ive adopted as a mum and she lives in a detached house :)

Sammy said...

Love this update! Big hug and smooch to Miss Fab xxx

Cat said...

what a time you are having!

thinking about you

love and light

Sima J said...

WOW looks like SUCH an awesomeness time you're having!! LOVE LOVE the pics :-)

Gail said...

I'm gonna call you Babs from now on then.

Looks awesome!! so glad to see you all having a blast!!xxxx

P.S. We will be in China for Christmas and New Year. Boo.

PaisleyJade said...

haha - yeah, we should call you Barb!

Just loved this post sooooo much - drooled over all the beautiful photos and imagined you guys having such an awesome time.

p.s loved The Help book way better than the movie (although the movie is great too). xoxo

Catching the Magic said...

WOW! I read this post with a huge smile on my face! The excitement, happiness and joy floods through in your words and absolutely wonderful photographs. How you've captured the love, affection and happiness of your family so beautifully.

I laughed at your daughter's lovely question about the houses being stuck together (so funny!) and the famous look a like thing... :)

All looks & sounds amazing. So glad to hear you had a great flight (bummer about the 2 hour wait at customs though - grrr - ah well, in the past now!).

Looking forward to more updates - but enjoy every precious moment!!!! Fabulous!

Marina said...

It really looks like you're having so much fun.. Now I desperately want to go somewhere :)

Trees said...

So glad you are having such a great trip! X

kezharry said...

Love the update...Love travel!!! you make me want to pack my bags and head to the airport. my sis lives in scotland and i would give my left leg to visit her and get her to meet her nephew. I too thought all the houses were 'stuck together' enjoy the adventure may it not go too quickly!

Widge said...

Ok soooooo in love with that first lighthouse pic!!! I would seriously love a print of that to hang on my wall! Wow it all sounds amazing simoney! Blessed as xo

P.s you are doing superbly well on Grannie's slow as computer :)

Anonymous said...

Newcastle Upon Tyne - gosh that brings back memory.....work ones unfortunately, not travel ones! Looks like you guys are having a fabulous trip....love the postcard picture....such a clever lady! Very cool...love to know how you manage to put such cool effects on your pictures. :)

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