Amsterdam in 28 hours

Amsterdam in 28 hours

I love Amsterdam and have just returned from my fourth visit to the city! It’s got such a chilled out vibe & it’s so pretty. I think I could go over & over again and never get bored. This time I went for one night which I have done previously, I don’t mind this because the flight is so short but if it’s your first visit you might be better doing 2 or more nights.

We landed at about 9.30 am and flew back out at 6pm so we had time each day to explore. I always get the train from Schiphol to Centraal which takes about 25 minutes and is around €5 single. There’s ticket machines near entrances to the platforms.

We stayed at ClinkNOORD hostel which is in a fab location, you get a free ferry from just outside central which only takes a few minutes. The ferry runs 24 hours a day every 5 minutes or so. This is my second time staying here and I’ve always booked a private room with bathroom. I think for location, price & cleanliness you can’t beat it. I was put of a hostel at first but you barely spend any time in the room & I’d definitely look at staying in more with a private room.

I love walking around the Jordaan, the canals are beautiful & there’s some lovely bars & shops. It’s a lot more peaceful than other areas so I’d definitely recommend a wander round here.

We then did a boat tour with Friendship Amsterdam, I’ve done tours with them twice before and have always really enjoyed it. It’s €15 for an hour canal cruise and the staff are really knowledgeable & friendly. You can get drinks onboard and it was perfect having a local Gin on a sunny day.

After the boat we headed to The Museum of Prostitution, Red Light Secrets. It was fascinating to hear the story from the point o view of a prostitute , and what it’s like to Work in the red light district. Definitely an eye opener and worth a visit.

Before we headed home the next day we went for Brunch at Bakers & Roasters, not far from the Heineken experience. The food is amazing here & all the staff are really friendly. It just has a lovely vibe to it. I had the Huevos Ranchos & a mimosa. I also had a coffee which was really good. I like strong coffee & it definitely is here. Well worth a visit.

I’d love to hear your favourite places to visit in Amsterdam as I’ll definitely be going back again.

Our April

Our April

I’ve recently seen a few people do the month in review Blog Posts and I love the idea. It’s so nice to have a record & see all the things you have got up to. All the little days out get forgotten so it’s lovely to look back on.

We started the month with Easter Sunday, we had dinner at my Mum & Dad’s and a park trip to burn off the millions of eggs Finn had ate.

We then had an amazing swimming lesson from Finn, which was a big turning point. He was really nervous and held onto his teacher when he first started but this was the point he slowly began to make progress and gain confidence m.

We had a trip to Bents Garden Centre in Warrington which Finn loved, there’s a fab park & a lovely cafe.

I then ended up in hospital for 2 nights with tonsillitis, I think though I was really run down. I’d been working loads & doing a lot of late nights & early starts. Luckily a few days later we went on our Amazing holiday to Costa Teguise in Lanzarote. We stayed at the HD Beach resort which you can read about here.

When we come home we met my Mum & Dad in Chorlton & went for food & a play in the park.

Another day another park visit, followed by Finn’s favourite coffee & cake.

We went to Messy Mallie’s which is about 20 minutes away from us in Buckley. It was brilliant and Finn loved painting his own money box.

After the Easter holidays we were entitled to more hours at nursery. I was sad in one way as Finn stared doing more days so we lost a day in the week together. It’s meant though that I’ve gone from doing 4/5 late nights a week to 1/2. I’ve loved the little things like us having tea together as a family & doing bath, story & bed time.

Finn’s first go at Crazy Golf, followed by a Wagamama’s.

A visit to Little Al’s Urban farm in Eastham. We love it here.

Yet more amazing swimming from Finn, he’s managing to swim now with just the woggle & not holding on to his teacher.

Finally a zoo trip, we are members of Chester Zoo so we go all the time. This time Finn played in the sand & water for over an hour.

Costa Teguise, Lanzarote- The restaurants we loved

Costa Teguise, Lanzarote- The restaurants we loved

We have recently come back from a week in Costa Teguise and we went to some amazing restaurants. There was such a lot of choice & they were all really reasonably priced. We love Spanish food so we’re absolutely spoilt for choice.

El Navarro

We went here after a recommendation from a friend & reading good reviews on both trip advisor & Lonely Planet. It was a bit of a distance from our hotel but definitely worth it. When we first got there I thought it didn’t seem very child friendly but I was wrong, the staff were brilliant with Finn. I went for the prawn, spinach & ricotta ravioli to start followed by hake & mussels in a butter & lemon sauce. Both were amazing! I love mussels & I’d say these were the freshest & tastiest I’ve ever had. I had a creme brûlée for dessert which was lovely as well. Stu had the porks cheek & really enjoyed it. This was the most expensive meal we had at around €80 but was so worth it.

El Navarro, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote El Navarro, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote El Navarro, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote El Navarro, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote El Navarro, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote

El Navarro, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote

La Tabla

I found La Tabla on trip advisor & it was highly rated for Tapas. Again we weren’t disappointed. It’s on a little courtyard tucked away but it was lovely & peaceful. The tapas was brilliant value at €21 for 7 dishes and we enjoyed them all. It was so busy with people being turned away on a Tuesday evening so definitely book (the number is on trip advisor and you can send them a WhatsApp).

La Tabla, Costa Teguise, LanzaroteLa Tabla, Costa Teguise, LanzaroteLa Tabla, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote La Tabla, Costa Teguise, LanzaroteLa Tabla, Costa Teguise, LanzaroteLa Tabla, Costa Teguise, LanzaroteLa Tabla, Costa Teguise, LanzaroteLa Tabla, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote

La Aulaga Casa Felix

Another tapas restaurant we found on trip advisor, although they did a wide range of meals here which all looked really good. This was again excellent value with each Tapa priced at €3. This is some of the best tapas we’ve ever ate and we are big Tapas fans.

Casa Felix, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote Casa Felix, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote Casa Felix, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote

Casa Felix, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote Casa Felix, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote Casa Felix, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote

La Pardela Restaurant

We fancied Paella one night and La Pardela came highly recommend on trip advisor. We opted for the seafood & it was amazing, packed with fish & seafood. The staff were brilliant with Finn and really made you feel welcome. We had starters as well but really didn’t need them as the paella was massive. It’s in a lovely location as well over looking the sea.

La Pardela, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote La Pardela, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote La Pardela, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote La Pardela, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote La Pardela, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote La Pardela, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote La Pardela, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote

Beach Bar Melia Salinas

We never ate here but I’ve got to mention the Beach Bar, we loved it. Perfect surroundings, amazing cocktails & chill out music. We loved going at nap time and some evenings with Finn as he loved playing in the sand.

Beach Bar Melia Salinas, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote Beach Bar Melia Salinas, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote Beach Bar Melia Salinas, Costa Teguise, Lanzarote

What my Toddler Eats 

What my Toddler Eats 

Finn is now 17 months, he’s still a really good eater and will try most things. He doesn’t always eat a big portion at each meal but will sometimes graze throughout the day. 
Breakfast 

For Breakfast Finn tends to have Cereal (Cheerios, rice crispies etc..) Something like avocado, peanut butter or soft cheese on toast or 1/2 a Bagel, a brioche roll a crumpet or pancakes. He also has fruit. I am trying to get him used to an open cup so I will give him this in the morning while he’s still in his pyjamas. 




Lunch 

Lunch is normally a pic- Nic type meal so we have the same thing if we are out and about or at home. I give Finn a choice of things like; sandwiches, cheese cubes, crisps, thins with ham, cucumber, fruit, cherry tomatoes, pepper etc.. 



Tea 

Finn will eat whatever we are eating in the evening. He loves Pasta at the moment so I will make that quite often. Recent meals I’ve made that he has loved are Joe Wick’s Chicken & Leek Pie, Sausage and Bean Stew and carbonara. After tea he will a small piece of angel cake, yogurt, fruit or occasionally ice- cream. 



Snacks and Drinks 

Finn loves milk, he has these Anyway up cow cups. He has about 3/4 cup full a day. He drinks mostly water with the odd weak cordial. Snacks tend to be fruit, rice cakes, raisins, cheese, Dunkers (breadsticks and cheese), flapjacks or yoghurt.



Muscle food- Fish 

Muscle food- Fish 

I recently placed another order at Muscle Food, this time I decided to try out their fish range. I love Fish and Seafood but we hardly eat it so I want to incorporate more into our diets. 


This order cost £31.30 including delivery. I had a code for free delivery. I ordered a fresh fish selection which was £19, this included. 

  • 2 X 4-5oz Fresh Salmon Fillets. 
  • 2 X 4-5oz Fresh Tuna Fillets 
  • 2 X 4-5oz Fresh Swordfish Loins 
  • 150g Fresh Cooked & Peeled King Prawns 
  • 40g Herby Fish Rub 

I also ordered 

  • 500g – Fresh Fish Pie Mix 
  • 250g Sticky Maple Glaze Salmon 

The fish is all really good portion sizes and good quality. I’ll update as we try it all. 

What my Toddler Eats in a Day 

What my Toddler Eats in a Day 

We are very lucky that Finn is quite an adventurous  eater he will try anything. Hopefully he will stay this way as it makes life so much easier. 

Here’s what he eats in a typical day 

Breakfast 

( I have also done a full post on Finn’s favourite breakfasts here.) 

This tends to start with cereal, his current favourite is Cheerios with whole milk. Finn doesn’t like to be spoon fed so I just put enough milk in to soften them. 

Our go to breakfast when we are in a rush is a banana and brioche as he can eat this while we are out or whilst I get ready for work. 

After his cereal he likes things like crumpets, pancakes, tea cakes toast or bagels. I always try to make sure he has some fruit. I usually have overnight oats and fruit so Finn will sometimes have this as well. 


Lunch & Snacks 

Lunch for Finn tends to be snack type foods as we are often out and about. He usually snacks throughout the day on things like sandwiches (ham, cream cheese, tuna etc.. On a sandwich thin), cherry tomatoes, crisps, fruit, cucumber, raisins, cheese, pepper sticks, rice cakes etc… 

Finn will tend to eat a big breakfast and tea and not so much at lunch so it works best for us to offer things like this throughout the day. 


Tea 

For tea Finn will eat whatever we eat, things like curry, chilli, spaghetti bolognaise, pasta, fish, stir fry and pad Thai. We like to try a wide variety of food and so far Finn has enjoyed most things. After tea he usually has fruit or yogurt and occasionally ice cream of a slice of angel cake or fruit cake. We all eat together in the evening but if I freeze small portions of what I cook for nights when we can’t eat with Finn. 



Drinks 

Finn drinks a lot of water and full fat milk. He has also recently started to have the odd cup of weak cordial or watered down fruit juice. He probably has about one cup of this a day. 


Las Iguanas, Cheshire Oaks

Las Iguanas, Cheshire Oaks

We love eating out as a family and are always on the hunt for child friendly restaurants that still serve decent food. Something I think is hard to find. Whilst shopping at Cheshire Oaks the other day we decided to try Las Iguanas. 


I was really impressed with the food and the bill was really reasonable. We ate off the Lunch time menu with 2 for 1 drinks and kids eat free with a paying adult. The waitress also came straight over with crayons which is always a winner with Finn. 


Finn had the Macaroni & cheese, Jelly and Ice cream and Bottomless Squash. He really enjoyed it and ate almost all of the child’s portion. The Kids Menu had lots of choice and I love a menu thats not just typical kids food and has smaller versions of the adults meals. 


We ate from  the Lunch Menu. I had Nacho’s to start followed by the Cuban Sandwich with fries. Both were really tasty with really good portion sizes. Stu had chicken wings to start followed by Havana Club & BBQ pork ribs. He really enjoyed both. 

To Drink we had 1 pint of beer, a coke and 2 pina colada’s from the 2 for 1  Drinks Menu. In total the bill came to £36 which is really good value for the quality of food we had. I loved that there were lots of young family’s eating so you didn’t feel out of place. I’d definitely recommend giving Las Iguanas a try. 

Where are your favourite places to eat as a family? 

Toddler breakfasts 

Toddler breakfasts 

I always struggle with quick and healthy breakfasts for Finn so thought I would share our favourites. I love looking on other people’s blogs for inspiration, so hopefully I can get more ideas for us as well.

Scrambled egg, cherry tomatoes & toast with full fat soft cheese. 

Overnight oats- I love these and have them a lot, Finn always wants to eat mine so I’ve started to make them for him. I use yogurt either Greek or a pot of fromage frais and mix in the oats. In the morning I top with whatever fruit we have, it’s perfect as the thicker consistency means Finn can feed himself. 

1/2 a bagel with full fat soft cheese and fruit. 

Brioche, cubes of cheese, scrambled egg, ham & cherry tomatoes. This is usually a lunch for Finn but on a day I know we have a busy morning and won’t be eating lunch till later I will make him something like this to keep him going.

Brioche and grapes, probably Finn’s favourite.