Rainy Holidays, Puffin Watching & Pony Rides on the Beach

Continuing on from my last post, I’ve been making time to write in cafes 🙂 I just published another adult novel. It’s psychological fiction and it’s called “Never Swat a Fly” and it’s available here if anyone is interested 🙂 https://www.amazon.co.uk/Never-Swat-Fly-Keelan-LaForge-ebook/dp/B09YYYL8L9/ref=mp_s_a_1_5?crid=1X94HBMNFII0O&keywords=keelan+laforge&qid=1652267589&sprefix=%2Caps%2C330&sr=8-5

The weather has been so changeable recently. We managed to fit in some ice-cream and an evening walk to the blossom trees on a dry day. My kids and I used to walk to the trees every day in Lockdown and they loved collecting the petals in their pockets 🙂 It’s such a simple thing but they get really excited about it 🙂

We went on a one-night holiday to the North coast. The weather couldn’t have been wetter (hence why we look like drowned rats in some of the photos :)) We got some hot drinks and the girls got slushies in a cafe overlooking the sea. Then, we went to an arcade and the girls enjoyed playing the games to win tickets. They used their tickets to buy a yo-yo and a squishy banana at the end. We followed it with a trip to Barry’s (which has now changed its name to Curry’s.) We went on the ghost train together, the girls went on the dodgems and my boyfriend went on the frog ride, which none of us were brave enough to get on 🙂 We had some falafel for lunch in another cafe that overlooked the sea 🙂 Then, we found shelter from the rain in a little indoor adventure golf place 🙂

We had a quick walk beside the shore and then returned to the hotel to dry off 🙂 We stayed in a hostel with private rooms. It had a beach hut theme and it was like staying in a cabin. We found a cute chip shop for dinner that had little wooden cabins you sit in too 🙂 You can order online from your table and it was like eating out but with more privacy – which is probably best with my kids’ table manners 😀

The following day, after we checked out, we drove to Ballycastle and got the ferry to Rathlin Island. None of us had visited it before and we got beautiful weather for it 🙂 The boat on the way there was quite bumpy but it was a little adventure 🙂 When we arrived, I instantly loved the island. It’s so quaint and there are very few shops there, so it’s filled with natural beauty. There was a little gift shop selling puffin themed crafts. We got the bus up to the seabird centre. It was a very uphill and cramped ride but it felt like we’d stepped back in time 🙂 They played a recording as we drove telling some of the history of the island, etc. When we got to the bird centre, we walked down to the cliffs and a lady gave us binoculars for bird watching 🙂 It was nesting season for the puffins and the other birds so they were all circling the cliffs carrying materials for their nests in their beaks. The staff were lovely there and the lady got a telescope for the girls to make sure they saw the puffins 🙂 The cliffs were very dramatic and beautiful. They also had a little room with a nature table in it. The girls were interested in the different shells and the shark eggs they had laid out. We had some coffee and headed back on the bus. We got off the bus a little bit earlier to have a picnic beside the sea. We were the only ones there apart from some seals that were lazing beside us on the rocks 🙂 After lunch, we walked back to where we’d started. There is a pub on the island that was blasting music and people were singing along. We found an outdoor gym and a playground for the girls to play at. Then, the girls had a pony ride each along the beach. When they were finished, it was time to get back on the boat. The journey back was much smoother. We were told sometimes you can see dolphins from the boat, but we didn’t see any. It was freezing on the top deck but the sun shone on us the whole way back.

When we got to Ballycastle, we spent some time sitting on the grass/my boyfriend and daughter did gymnastics. We got an ice-cream from Morelli’s and spent some time in the playground before we started our journey home 🙂

On the bank holiday after we got home, we went to the Festival of Fools in Belfast. We sat on little cushions outside and watched a performance where two people used tape in their act for juggling, etc. Then, we watched another comedy/acrobatic performance. It was funny until I was dragged up to be part of the show! I needed to recover afterwards so we retreated to a cafe and had some coffee and the girls got babyccinos. We watched one more acrobatic performance and then went home. The event was free and it was entertaining, but next time I might hide in the back row 🙂

I still have a couple of sunflower prints available here: Any proceeds from sales are going towards the Ukraine. https://www.etsy.com/uk/listing/1189482044/sunflower-print-feel-the-sun-on-your?ref=listings_manager_grid

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