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Packing for Iceland and the cold outdoors

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I booked the bucket list holiday of my dreams this year and at the beginning of September my teen daughter (DD) and I set off for Iceland for 6 days. I had decided to not bother with the Northern lights or the Blue Lagoon as neither really attracted me. I did want to see all the usual touristy things near Reykjavik (where we would be based) though, and I lazily didn't want to hire a car.

So our holiday was a relaxed affair, with tourist buses, no camping, no hiking, and a fair bit of city walking. We did squeeze in a whale watching trip.

With that in mind I looked at weather forecasts and made clothing plans. Because as we all know, there is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.

Icelandic weather in September isn't cold, but it can feel that way due to wind chill (very strong winds) and lots of rain. So I looked for wind and waterproof clothing and some new walking boots. I also made sure I'd got enough pairs of Heat Holders socks because if I know one thing about t…

Boomtown Fair 2018

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Where to begin.

What an incredible festival.

Before going  to Boomtown, but after I had, on a whim, purchased tickets, people were keen to tell me what to expect. To be fair to them, some of these people seemed to assume that a 52 year old woman would be shocked by drug taking and horrified by a festival loo. And on the whole, the reactions I received upon mentioning 'I'm off to Boomtown next year' where those of shock and horror. I was variously told :
"you'll hate it, it's a full on festival" "Rather you than me, it's not a family festival" "People die there you know, it's all drugs and gangs" "The music isn't anything you'd like" "It's a lot of walking, really hilly" and my favourite : 
" 'king hell, rather you than me, you'll die" Reader I did not die. It is true that a lot of drugs are consumed at Boomtown, keys of ket seem to be as much currency as the great British pound.…

Eating Vegan (and not eating vegan) at a Festival

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I've been to a few festivals over the summer, Cornbury, Camp Bestival and Boomtown Fair and have tried the delicious food on offer at each one. This year for an added bit of excitement DD has become vegan so the extra challenge to feed her has been fun. No longer can I just grab a burger or a pie and mash...so what have I been eating and how have the festivals fared?

At Cornbury, which is a smallish festival, there was a fairly good selection. We had to option of vegan curries, vegan pizzas, paellas, and other snacks, including falafels (the vegan staple!) and spicy vegan burgers, this last item being DDs favourite and she returned a few times for the same thing! Goodness Gracious Healthy Foods was at all the festivals we went to and scored a firm 5 stars as they even had vegan cake options!


At Cornbury we discovered some dairy free ice cream at the Shepherds ice cream stall.


Obviously we didn't only eat vegan..well I didn't - and there was plenty of delicious food for me …

Campervans and tents and festival storms

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Last weekend I went to Camp Bestival. Unusually for me I didn't take a tent! I fulfilled a bit of a bucket list dream and hired a gorgeous and retro VW campervan called Molly. She is pink! DD and I had an exhilarating drive, (exhilarating is the polite way of saying terrifying) from Sussex to Dorset. Old campers have no power steering (obviously) and a top speed of about 60mph (downhill with a good wind.) They take a while to get used to after driving a Fiat Panda I can tell you!

So the first hour was punctuated by swearing, giggling and screams, but once we were out of the country lanes and filled with petrol and on our way it was fine, Molly and I quickly became firm friends. VW Campers are great little campers for just 2 of you and real solid little things, Molly had no trouble with driving across fields uphill, and once parked up she was a glorious little home for 4 days of the festival.


It turned out to be a good year to choose to take a camper van, because the wind started …

Camp Bestival 2018 review of (probably) the best family festival on Earth

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Hello! I am back from one of the best family festivals on earth, Camp Bestival,  and I'm not only saying that because they gifted me a ticket!
This year the festival was sadly cut short by horrendous storms and wind, but no one wants doom and gloom so here are the fun bits!

First off, we hired a camper van this year! So minimal tentsniffing for me, but the joy of a cute pink VW camper instead.(more of her soon)

Day one was Thursday. Hot and sunny we drove (slowly in the elderly camper) to the site. Parked high on the hill and gazed down over the festival. Thursday evening we spent lazing about because we assumed we had so much time...note to self, seize the moment! (rules for life and festivals) do not assume you have days and days left..)


Day two. The festival begins. There is much prowling and getting orientated, and this is because with Bestival being held on the same site one week later the layout had changed slightly. Initially (like many people I'm sure) I hated the chang…