This summer we’ve been suggesting loads of great ideas for fun things to do, but we’ve also been encouraging you guys to suggest things. Using the #ShareOurSummer hashtag we’ve seen what you’ve been up to and, frankly, we’re a little bit jealous.
With so many great examples, we wanted to share some with you so we’re giving over our blog to the brilliant Capture by Lucy as she talks about her family holiday for today’s post.
So without further ado, enjoy!
Before I was born my grandparents bought a little flat by the seaside in Southbourne on the coast in Dorset. My childhood summers were spent with cousins – first holidays for each of the babies in the family – a tradition which has continued for the next generation. Everyone has a happy place, and this is mine. The furniture has been updated over the years, but the feeling is just the same. The beach hut has been re-painted, but the routine is known and loved by everyone who visits.
Every year we share a few days with best friends who love it as much as we do. We trundle to the beach, down the zig-zag path counting the benches, stopping to take the same photo of the long stretch of sand, then fill the worktop in the hut with a bottomless picnic and lay out the beach chairs. We smile as the children race onto the beach, a place where they have the freedom to roam under our watchful eyes, running up the sandy steps to get another spade from the washing basket under the counter top, bursting with sandy old buckets and precious stones collected each year.
When you love something it feels so nice to share it.
We spent a day on the beach, building castles, making mermaid sand tails and chasing the waves crashing onto the washed-up pebbles. We combed the beach for sea shells and our three mini entrepreneurs set up a shell shop on the edge of the prom, exclaiming to passers by, “Get your shells here, loads of lovely shells here!”
Of course the shells were free but they role played being shop keepers and bartered with dog walkers giving them a special offer of 3 for 2! A day of simple pleasures, making as many memories as the number of shells laid out on the prom. It was hard to keep them out of the fiercely cold sea, they just ran in whilst we took a sharp intake of breath each time a wave hit our ankles.
There’s something quite magical for me, watching the boys relive my childhood with their little sweetheart, just like I did with our family friends. It’s a special thing to have friends for life; someone who knows you forever and who you love like a sibling. They waded into the water holding hands – the pure innocent joy of a treasured friendship.
For once there was no shushing them as they screamed at the top of their voices! They kicked and splashed under cloudy skies and we practised skimming stones into the foamy shoreline, all scanning the pebbles on the beach for the perfectly smooth stone.
The rest of our mini break featured crabbing lines, watching our catch scuttle down the jetty and back into the sea, ice creams smothered in sprinkles and train rides to the Mudeford beach huts. I have the very same photo of me at the boys’ age on the Noddy train, cuddled into a carriage with my cousins, waving wildly to smiley faces as we whizzed by.
The white fluffy clouds finally gave wave to blue skies as we caught the ferry back from the Quay and the brightly coloured beach huts were bathed in sunshine. We had a pitstop at a beach house café and, armed with ice creams, headed for a paddle along the shore before we caught the train back to Hengistbury Head to get our sandy ones into a warm bubble bath still just about big enough for three.
We kissed them goodnight, the slightest whisper of salty sea air lingering on their sun kissed faces and crept out, stopping at the door to listen to them debating whether they could all fit in the top bunk! A perfect week with the loveliest of friends. How lucky we are to have them share our summer adventures.
A huge thank you to Lucy for sharing her beach trip with us, what a beautiful tradition. For more great posts and images, check out Lucy’s blog