Followers

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

A lasting effect......

I read somewhere recently that it’s important to provide holiday memories for your children. I never really thought about providing memories when booking holidays when the boys were younger, it was just "will we all enjoy it there" type of thing.


Something happened recently though that made me realise that what happens on your holiday as a child can stay with you for the rest of your life and influence where you take your holidays as an adult.

When the boys were young we couldn't afford to take them abroad, hell I didn't go abroad until I was 35, so we'd have day trips to the seaside and a week in a caravan here or there.


One place we particulary loved was Abersoch on the Llyn Peninsula in North Wales. We had friends who owned a caravan there and they rented it out to friends and family. Usually we only got as far as Lytham St. Annes near Blackpool in a caravan but, when M&H told us about Abersoch, we thought we'd venture further afield.


The boys were about 9 and 4 respectively on our first visit to Abersoch. We loaded up the car with everything we would need for a week(read kitchen sink here), MWM had planned the route - the M56 to Backford, A5117 and A550 to Queensferry, A494 down past Buckley to Ruthin and down to Corwen, A5 all the way to Bala, round lake Bala then the A414 to Trawsfynydd, the A470/A487 to Porthmadog, A497/499 into Llanbedrog which is just outside Abersoch and the place where the caravan was. If you ever want to go there you now have the directions from our house! This route took us about 31/2 hours but we passed some of the most beautiful scenery. The sun was beating down and we were all raring to go.

By the time we got to Lake Bala we were all bursting for the loo and D (youngest son) was car sick (we think it was all the windy roads that did it) so we had a 'relief' stop. By this time the sun had hidden behind the big black clouds that had been looming since Ruthin and it was starting to drizzle! You know the stuff - that fine rain that wets you through! I opened the boot to get out some wipes and a change of t-shirt for D when I suddenly remembered I hadn't picked up the kagools - they were still piled in a heap on the sofa. I heard MWM give a moan and he announced "I think the new petrol tank is leaking!"

Great, we didn't have much spending money, hoping for glorious weather so that we could keep the kids occupied on the beach with home-made sandwiches and a bottle of pop, now it looked like the majority of our meagre holiday fund would be spent on fixing the petrol tank and buying four kagools to keep the rain off! The rest of the journey passed in a blur of sick bags, rain and misery!

It was almost midday by the time we were coming into Llanbedrog, where the caravan park was, so MWM decided it would be best if we go straight into Abersoch to get the petrol tank fixed - if that was possible. Miraculously the rain stopped and the sun came out, not only that we just managed to catch the garage as they were shutting up shop for the weekend. "Could they possibly have a look at the tank?" MWM said pleadingly. "No problem" said the mechanic. I vowed never to let anyone call Welsh people to me again! There was no leak in the petrol tank it was just a loose something or other which he fixed in five minutes flat and with NO charge!

"What's the weather been like this week?" we asked the mechanic.

"Glorious" he says "we needed that rain, but it will be glorious again this week you watch".

He wasn't wrong. The temperature was in the eighties all week and we never saw another cloud the whole week - no need to buy kagools! In fact we had to buy some more sun cream.

We backtracked to Llanbedrog and found the caravan. It had everything we wanted and was on a lovely caravan park with beautiful countryside all around. The boys found friends in neighbouring caravans and had great fun chasing each other up Donkey Hill (don't ask I don't know why it was called that). We spent long lazy days on the beach at the Warren and the Harbour Beach in Abersoch itself. We found the Sandpiper Restaurant, where N (eldest son) discovered he loved deep fried whitebait and the Abersoch Rock Shop where they sold sticks of pink and white rock saying Abersoch all the way through to the end. After our evening meal at the caravan each night we all walked down to the little pub to sit outside with a drink and take in the evening air. The only complaint we had was the pubs in Wales don't open on Sundays, however it didn't stop us going back there for the next three years!

Now we never knew until very recently what a profound effect the holidays we spent in Abersoch had on our boys. Two weeks ago I had a video message on my mobile phone from N showing his three children playing on a beach with little boats in the background.

"Guess where we are?" said the message "Abersoch!"

I rang N to find out the why's and wherefore's and he told me he wanted A (his wife) and the three children to experience the best place you could possibly go for a holiday, so he had driven them to Abersoch for the day! Twenty-eight years after his first visit. They had a wonderful day there and totally fell in love with the place, so much so they're planning to go back and spend a week over the summer. D remembers Abersoch too, but not, I think, with the same affection as his brother.

I guess where you take your kids for holidays can have a lasting effect eh?







PS I just got through reading my son's blog Dan's Fi-ver where he has posted about the countryside around where he lives and mentions The Singing Ringing Tree in Burnley. Go listen to it here, it's amazing!

58 comments:

Dan's Fi-ver said...

Who's the small child with the hat and the long socks??! Be t he grew up to be a handsome fella!!

My most vivid memory is of Donkey Hill with it's weird bridge in the manner of a handrail-less stone slab and the odd single grave - maybe someone's donket was buried there...?!

No matter the small budget, they were great times...

x

Akelamalu said...

He did Dan, he did!

You do remember then! xx

Shaz said...

There looks like a lot of fun family memories there. x x x

RUTH said...

The kids and I have such similar memories of our camping holidays in Cornwall. Every year when the children were small we'd camp on the beach at Pentewan sands...no luxuries and limited spending money but even now the kids are grown up they still remember those days of forever sunshine (actually it rained a lot but they don't remember that)and would love to go back. Great slide show....the girls always built a sand car for their baby brother.
Rx

buffalodickdy said...

We found the "golden years" of family vacations were when the kids became old enough to remember them until they were teenagers and didn't want to be seen in public with Mom and Dad!

Mike M said...

Great post! My dad used to take us camping every year as kids.
I did the same fro my daughter and how she wants to do it every summer.

I agree. Where we go as adults on vacation has a huge affect on our kids.

Akelamalu said...

shaz yes they are lovely memories! :)

Akelamalu said...

The simple holidays when the children were young were THE BEST weren't they Ruth?

Akelamalu said...

Ah yes, buffalodickdy when it became uncool to go away with Mum and Dad!

Akelamalu said...

mike I've never been camping, the nearest I've ever got was going to 'camp' with school, but we stayed in a Nissen Hut type dormitory - no tents.

Shaz said...

Akelamalu there's a tag for you on our meme page if you'd like to play along x x x

Akelamalu said...

Thanks Shaz I'll take a look. :)

Miss Understood said...

We've had some great caravanning holidays too. You can't beat the good ol' British seaside, can you?

Akelamalu said...

No you can't miss u, when you get the weather! ((wink))

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

i has so much fun trying to figure out what the heck you were saying! ha ha... funny how the english language can be SO different in two place. i think i got it all though and the holiday sounds like it was lovely!

smiles, bee

ps: my knee is good, yours?

Autumn said...

Wonderful story and photos. Thank you for sharing with us.

Akelamalu said...

Crikey Bee which bits didn't you understand? My knee's doing really well, glad to hear yours is too! x

Akelamalu said...

Hi autumn so glad you enjoyed sharing our little holiday! :)

Drunk Mummy said...

Great slide show! It looks and sounds like a typical British holiday - glad your kids remember it with such affection.

Akelamalu said...

Thanks drunk mummy, yes typically British apart from it didn't rain! :)

mist1 said...

Can you provide some memories for me too? I can't seem to locate any of mine.

Jenny! said...

What a great story! It's amazing how children view things completely different than adults...we worry about the money and all the kids think about is how cool that trip was! Awesome memories for their kids too!

Catch said...

a great post!!! and the pictures were awesome! I really enjoyed that! We had a summer home we always went to every summer for the whole summer....ugh...I hated it...wanted to be home with my friends. but I do have some great memories of it..at night my Dad would build a big bonfire and we would all sit around it and sing...then we had horses, which I loved..Ill never forget my horses!

Flowerpot said...

when I was a child we went to Polzeath every summer. We've just started going there again - having a family meet up there once a year. We all still love it!

Akelamalu said...

mist that'll be the vodka! ((wink))

Akelamalu said...

Yes Jenny and they usually enjoy the simplest of holidays too!

Akelamalu said...

See Catch you didn't hate it really did you? :)

Akelamalu said...

How lovely flowerpot that all your family still meet up at the same holiday place. :)

talj said...

What a really lovely post! Sadly my memory is so rubbish these days I can't really remember much, if anything , of my 'younger' years! Best I start making some more memories...and take photos of them this time LOL

{{HUGS}} xx

Akelamalu said...

Thanks talj, I think you should! ((hugs to you too))

"Early Bird" said...

The video is awesome...I bet it sounds even better in person!
:)

Helen said...

Awwww! How lovely :) We built a speed boat on our last holidays with C and E. All the other kids were joining in in the end, great fun! Thanks for looking in on me. And thanks for the Reiki.
Love ya loads
H XXXX

Helen said...

oops! I meant to say we built a speed boat in the sand!!! LOL...

Akelamalu said...

The singing Ringing Tree is awesome early bird isn't it!

Akelamalu said...

Helen you should have built a bigger boat! :)
You're welcome honey, hope you feel better soon. I love you too. xx

Skittles said...

What a wonderful story, but I have to admit that I guessed the ending! My kids have told me about some of their favorite times and it was always something that just happened.. never going to a touristy place. :)

Linda said...

This had to be a really fun post for you to write as I'm sure it brought back a lot of happy memories! And the pictures really capped it off!

By the by, I have tagged you for a meme over at my blog, I don't think you've done this one yet!

la bellina mammina said...

oh...that's so cute...and priceless. Thanks for sharing Akela...

GEWELS said...

What a nice post. And look how clever you are with your slide shows.

And a kagool would be.....? a raincoat, galoshes? I'm sorry I don't speak English apparently.

Elween said...

such a long post of the trip! it must be really significant to you. love the slide you posted. well, you said you didn't spend much but i think you spent quite a sum on petrol for car itself! ahha :)

Akelamalu said...

Yep, the kids always enjoyed the simple holidays more skittles.

Akelamalu said...

Yeah it was fun to write Linda it brought back such good memories.

I'll take a look at the meme later, thanks.

Akelamalu said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it Bella :)

Akelamalu said...

A kagool is a short waterproof jacket with a hood Gewels. As to the slide shows, now I know how to do them you'll be seeing plenty more!!! :)

Akelamalu said...

Thankfully we didn't lose much petrol Elween. Glad you enjoyed the post and the pictures. :)

Dumdad said...

This is so true. I still remember with great affection a holiday we had as a family in Robin Hood's Bay when I was about eight years old. The guest house was damp and cold and the food dire. It rained most days and everything seemed to be shut.
And yet I still remember the joy of gathering winkles (and cooking and eating them later) and playing on the beach despite the wind and rain.
Happy days!

Akelamalu said...

Ah Happy Days dumdad. Thanks for dropping by, do call again. :)

Pearls of Wisdom said...

Happy memories and camping...I love camping with my children. I do so hope they remember all the memories as they get older. I am so glad your son remembers my sweet friend.

Hugs,

Angel ():)

CG said...

What wonderful memories! I'm always surprised by how much our kids remember of family holidays. This post made me feel realy nostagic!!

Pauline said...

The holiday that sticks in my mind the most is a trip to Windermere with Dad. Mum stayed at home because she had to work. Dad took us on a forced march up some local mountain and down the other side, promising ice cream sundaes as a treat but when we got there the shop was shut.
My sister frightened me to death with a rams skull she had found and my brother fell out of a cherry tree and broke his arm. It was wonderful and I've loved the Lake District ever since.

Josie Two Shoes said...

This story warms my mom heart, Ake! One of my son's happiest memories is the trip we took to San Diego and Sea World when he was just three. We definitely couldn't afford it at the time, but I won't ever regret it for a minute, family memories are priceless!

Bankerchick said...

Good story, I am going to think about some of my favorites from youth and I think I'll ask my kids what they remember as fun and exciting. We hardly went anywhere w/o the kids, neither did my folks.

Akelamalu said...

I'm sure your camping trips will be are the forefront of your children's memories Angel :)

Akelamalu said...

So was I cg, even D commented that he remembers a lot about it and he was only 4!

Akelamalu said...

That was some eventful trip Pauline, no wonder your remember it! :)

Akelamalu said...

Oh Josie to give your kids memories like that you'd almost sell your soul wouldn't you?

Akelamalu said...

You'll be surprised bankerchick what they remember, and you too if you think back! Hope you'll do a post about it. :)

somebody said...

酒店經紀人,菲梵酒店經紀,酒店經紀,禮服酒店上班,酒店小姐,便服酒店經紀,酒店打工,酒店寒假打工,酒店經紀,酒店經紀,專業酒店經紀,合法酒店經紀,酒店暑假打工,酒店兼職,便服酒店工作,酒店打工經紀,制服酒店經紀,專業酒店經紀,合法酒店經紀,酒店暑假打工,酒店兼職,便服酒店工作,酒店打工,酒店經紀,制服酒店經紀,酒店經紀