Sunday morning is normally pretty hectic in our house – mainly with football shenanigans. However, as the season has finished for us now (THANK GOD), today was the second Sunday this year that I have had a lie-in. Except … as I’m living in my Dad’s spare room, the curtains in there are very thin, there are no blinds and therefore I am always woken up with the sunshine streaming in (as lovely as sunshine is) at around 6.30am. Not cool Mother Nature.
Yesterday was no exception but I did manage to get myself off after a while *cough* and sleep in till 10am. #winning. Sausages and fried egg on toast followed, along with two vats of coffee and several episodes of Friends.
My best friend and I had spoken the day before about possibly taking the boys out somewhere on the Sunday, but I was very tempted just to chill at home and do nothing. But we didn’t, mainly because we knew it would mean the boys would just spend another day on the PS3 and we were having none of it! The weekends are our weekend too and we fancied going to the beach … so that’s exactly what we did. I went to collect Jo at 12.30pm and as Whitstable is only 20 minutes away, we drove down there. It was a nice excuse to give my new car a run out and we were extremely lucky with the weather – the sun was shining on us!
Fellow parents of 9 to 11-year-olds may feel our pain, but it’s really hard to get our boys enthused about anything other than gadgets and football. I’m not kidding. Telling them we are going to the beach is always met with a look of disdain, which is very irritating as we know they thoroughly enjoy it once they get there. It just seems that they need to moan about pretty much everything these days but that’s tween life for you … a precursor to what it is going to be like when they are teenagers.
So that’s something to look forward to.
Whitstable is my seaside of choice, not only because it’s really near to me, but just because it has a nice vibe, lovely shops and great fish and chips if you know where to look. In fact, we made a rookie error and bought fish and chips by the harbour and it was tasteless to say the least. I think we will do our research next time and find somewhere better.
Because the weather was unexpectedly glorious, every other bugger had decided to go to Whitstable to and therefore parking was a nightmare. There are several car parks in Whitstable but they were all full and the main one had half of it cordoned off and so we ended up driving around Whitstable for 10 minutes looking for somewhere. We were lucky in the end as we drove past the bowling alley on the outskirts of town and found a great spot along the seafront. Top tip right there!
We were semi-organised in that we both had brought a rug and a towel to sit on, bottle of water and a can of fizzy Vimto … but that was about it! In hindsight, and the next time we do go, we’ll take a disposable barbecue and a couple of cans of beer. I’m well classy. The last time we went to Whitstable together, we spent a week down there as we rented out to a friend’s house, and the boys loved having S’mores on the barbecue every evening on the beach, so I think we’ll do that again.
By the way, if you’d like to see a video I made of the day, click below!
We found a spot on the pier just to sit and relax for a while, Dexter explored a bit on his own and even got as far as paddling in the water – a first! I am finding, now he is approaching 11, he is much more adventurous, whether that is going on all the fairground rides in Brighton on his own, or paddling in the water at Whitstable, he just seems less afraid of things these days. It’s great to watch because he doesn’t seem so anxious about things any more and it means that he gets the full experience now. We played a random game that Jo had introduced us to called ‘Don’t show Keith your teeth’ (from Celebrity Juice) and we had hours of fun playing that … well, at least 15 minutes.
It was inevitable but after an hour or so the boys said they were starving so after the very disappointing fish and chips we had the obligatory 99 … which was rather glorious.
We wandered back and, as we had promised the boys, we went bowling. I had forgotten to take my glasses with me and was only wearing my prescription sunglasses so had to bowl wearing those. Amazingly, my first ball was a strike, but it just went downhill from then on! I think I stopped keeping score by my sixth ball.
We headed back to the car thinking the boys had probably had enough by now, as it was 5pm, but they wanted to stay. See what I mean? Once we’re there, they love it! We just chilled on the beach for another hour or so until our car park ticket ran out and we made our way home, tired but very happy.
What’s your favourite thing about going to the seaside?