An Award Winning Blog featuring Travel, Adventure & Family Life in North East England

Thursday, 25 August 2016

When family trips away don't quite go to plan

We've had such a lovely summer full of adventure and plenty of chill out time too. We've travelled up and down the country and abroad and enjoyed some real quality family time together. Sometimes though, family day trips and holidays just don't go to plan and I thought I'd share a few of our disasters with you today...........

Potty training & long car journeys

Why we decided to start potty training Heidi 7 days before a long car journey I will never know. I thought I was prepared and read all sorts of tips online including covering her car seat with a carrier bag. Nothing prepares you for what's in store though. A journey that should have taken 3 hours was more than double that. That moment when your toddler shouts 'I need a poo' when you've just passed a sign saying the next services are 19 miles away will haunt you forever. Cue lots of arguing, sweating, trying to find somewhere to stop, trying to urgently locate the potty in your packed boot, finding out your child actually doesn't need to toilet........then once you are back on the road discovering they do actually need to go and repeating the whole cycle of events. It all ends with you having to sit with a nappy bag by your feet filled with potty contents until you reach the next services......... it's not pretty and not exactly the road trip I had planned!

Potty Training and Car Journeys DO NOT MIX

When kids loudly ask why people smell funny on the tube

Earlier this year we travelled to London with the kids. Harry and Heidi had been a few times before but it was Jack's first time. Jack isn't the quietest of children and during his first trip on the tube during rush hour he asked very loudly, 'Why do people smell funny here?'. I tried to change the subject but he just kept asking and asking and asking.....I didn't have an answer for him but I did want to ground to swallow me up. I am sure I caught a few other passengers smirking at my discomfort. The thing with kids is, they just don't have a filter and just tell it like it is!

Look at Jack's face! It's as if butter wouldn't melt!

When a child escapes at passport control

I will never forget the time we headed to Portugal for the week and my niece who was probably around 3-4 years old at the time decided to make a run for it and dashed through passport control before we'd even checked in......I think we all stayed rooted to the spot in shock! Luckily she returned pretty quickly and we can laugh about it now. Kids certainly keep you on your toes!

 Losing swimsuits going down slides with your kids

I've never been one for going down water slides (even as a child myself), but when your own kids ask you when you're on holiday and they're too little to go down water slides by themselves you just have to grin and bear it. I will NEVER forget the time I went down a particularly fast flume at Butlins and almost lost my swimsuit! CRINGE! So embarrassing for me at the time but the kids found it hilarious.

Monkey wee at Longleat

My final little story is part of Rickelton family legend and my kids like to remind me about it as often as they can. We visited Longleat safari park a few years ago and decided to brave the monkey enclosure. All was fine until a monkey decided to sit on our bonnet and do a big wee. The kids found this highly amusing. Anyway, we exited the enclosure and anyone who's been to Longleat will know that in the next part you can wind your window down and feed some deer from your car. So I did just that......only for the wind to blow lots of monkey wee right in my face! Argh!!!!!! Everyone in the car was crying with laughter - me not so much! Longleat is a trip that definitely did not go to plan for me. The kids even made me a canvas picture reminding me of the incident for mother's day the following year and made me put it on my bedroom wall! LOL

Take my advice - check before winding the car window down at Longleat

So as you can see, travelling with kids is definitely not all plain sailing. I've loved remembering these stories now and it's actually nice to have funny tales like this to look back on. I remember these days fondly now even if it didn't seem like it at the time.

I'd love to hear if you have any tales of when things didn't quite go to plan when you've travelled with kids.

Thanks to Bassetts Vitamins for sending us some vitamins to try. Here's what Bassetts Vitamins have to say about their vitamin range: 

'At Bassetts Vitamins we know that family life is colourful and rarely straightforward. Family activities are a great opportunity to enjoy precious and active time together,  and we believe that families need to be ready and set to go, to deal with whatever challenges the day may bring. Our intention is to support families through the ups and downs of family life.’ 

You can learn more about Bassetts Vitamins here

Disclosure: I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have
volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for
the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity. (I
have received a voucher in return for writing this post)



  1. OMG this is one of the funniest blogs I've ever read, love it!!! Can't believe you were brave enough to take your car in to see the monkeys!

  2. I can't imagine how tough it must be to have kids who are still potty training in the car. x

  3. Lol, great post, it did make me giggle. My kids to equally amusing things.

  4. Few great little stories made me smile thinking of you having to sit in the car with a filled nappy at your feet for a while but I'd say if you were really trying to be prepared. Have that potty at the top of all your stuff haha

  5. So funny. Love the tube story. Our eldest constantly says things like that. Wish the ground would eat me up! x

  6. Haha! This is funny. Day trips with kids can be eventful.

  7. Oh hun, I did cackle all the way through this especially at the monkey wee x

  8. Oh dear that monkey wee story is funny (more so in hindsight when it's happened to someone else!) I do feel for you about the potty training though.

  9. I think the time my son demanded a fruit pouch at passport control and squeezed it too hard will remain ingrained in my memory. We had no spare clothes, and his whole face was covered in fruit puree. Luckily the man at passport control saw the funny side and still tempted to check his passport!


I always love reading your thoughts and comments - Sam x

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