Entertaining the kids on Summer Holidays!

So the weekend at ‘The Flavors of Fingal’ in Donabate was fun for the kids. It had lots of entertainment, but it was expensive and not something us Irish people can afford to do every day of the Summer holidays. So what do you do with a bunch of ten year old girls on their first day of school’s out when you’re broke after the weekend?
That was my thought exactly yesterday as I had four of Yasmin’s school pals over for a play date.
So firstly, I let them play around the house and garden, catching up on their neglected toys and bouncing on the trampolene, while I cooked a lunch and packed a picnic.
Myself and my neighbour Catherine with four kids (three that she minds) decided to go to Donabate beach, North County Dublin.
Donabate beach is a beautiful safe beach with no deep shelving, but deep enough to swim. As usual with the Irish weather, it started out really warm yesterday morning, but as we arrived at the beach at 2.45pm, the wind had got quite strong and the sun had decided to go elsewhere!
But children being brave and adventurous stripped off and headed straight in! Jumping into the cold waves with big squeals of happiness. Not for the faint hearted!
 I remember when my sister in law Darlene and her five children from Texas came to visit one Summer and we brought them up to Donabate beach in the freezing cold weather of June at the time. Their shocked faces told us we were mad! We were indeed. I’m sorry Darlene.xx
Anyway, when the kids were cold enough and turning a good shade of purple and the sandwiches had flavors of sand crunching in them, we headed back to the playground beyond the beach.We piled plenty of jumpers and jackets on the freezing little bodies and shared biscuits and tea and hugs.
The kids were soon stripping off again as they start running around with a ball. A few dock leaf’s later after numerous stings from running in through the little forest playing hide and seek, declaring, ‘not the worse stings they had ever got’. “Mine was much worse” said Maggie Joe, “Once I fell into a whole bunch of nettles and I was stung all over!” Everybody ‘Ooohed.’
Our gang of nine girls and we two stopped at the notoriously famous ‘Scrum Diddley’s’ in Donabate village on the way home for ice cream and coffees and everybody was silently relishing their delicious ice cream at 2.50 euros each for a generous cup and three toppings.
 The kids happy as peas in a pod as we left for home. (I did have to stop once for a little bout of car sickness from Yasmin and all the girls went ‘Ugh!’ But sure it was grand, ‘Not the worse bout’, she said)
Day 1 over and Yasmin exhaustedly fell into bed last night with a smile on her face, “What are we doing tomorrow Mammy?”
xx Jean

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