Diggerland - Durham

Diggerland - Durham

Scroll to the bottom for a video of our day out.

During the February half term we visited Diggerland in Durham. It was the first time that we’d visited, which feels strange as it’s such a big local attraction. I think there were probably two reasons, firstly because I didn’t know much about it, apart from that it was a theme park about diggers, and secondly it’s pretty pricey to visit, so there never seemed to be right time.

Behind the Seams at Preston Park Museums and Grounds - AD

[Advert] If you are looking for place to visit that will entertain both the children and adults in your group, then <a href="https://www.prestonparkmuseum.co.uk" rel="nofollow">Preston Park Museum and Grounds</a> is a great day out. Until 3rd March 2019, in addition to the brilliant park, museum and Victorian street you can catch <a href="http://www.prestonparkmuseum.co.uk/behindtheseams" rel="nofollow">Behind the Seams</a> is a collection of over 35 costumes from famous films and TV Shows.

Peter Pan Panto - Whitley Bay Playhouse

Last week we went along to the the opening night of Peter Pan, this year’s Panto at Whitley Bay Playhouse. I had high hopes as I’d loved last year's Cinderella at the Playhouse, but this year the story and jokes didn’t really hit the spot for me. However, my 4 year old, who has been lucky enough to see three pantos this year, says Whitley Bay was his favourite. It’s always a relaxed environment so a good first panto for families with young children.

Beauty and the Beast Panto - Customs House

This year’s show is Beauty and the Beast, and it made a really nice change to be heading to a panto to see a show we’d never seen live before. The story loosely follows the Disney classic that we know and love, but with a fair few plot points taken out and replaced with panto slapstick. There were loads of songs, (including four from The Greatest Showman), laughs and warmth. The theatre is small with comfortable seats and due to the layout you are pretty much guaranteed a good view from wherever you sit.

Messy Play at BALTIC

Messy Play at BALTIC

Last month we went to messy play at the BALTIC Centre For Contemporary Art. I’m the type of parent who likes to be out and about pretty often, but planning crafting and sensory play activities at home are well outside my comfort zone. Which is why I love classes like this, as the kids can play in all the sprinkles, flour and paint they like, but it doesn’t fall to me to clean it up.

Summer Activities at Seaton Delaval Hall

Summer Activities at Seaton Delaval Hall

* This is a sponsored post *

We have been National Trust members for a good few years now. Once we had a baby and realised that we'd have a lot more family time to fill, with considerably less money, it seemed to make sense to sign up for an annual membership. Especially as we have so many great National Trust places to visit in the North East. I love that with an annual pass there is always somewhere lovely to visit without needing to spend money. We often take a picnic so it’s always a pretty frugal trip out.

Great exhibition of the North with Tyne and Wear Metro

Great exhibition of the North with Tyne and Wear Metro

Tyne and Wear Metro recently got in touch to work with us on a Great Exhibition of the North family day out. To celebrate the amazing exhibits, inspired technology and innovation, Tyne and Wear Metro have launched a limited edition design of their Pop Pay As You Go card and a Great Exhibition of the North adventure book.

The 2018 Frugal summer holiday bucket list - 42 Free or Cheap Days out in the North East

The 2018 Frugal summer holiday bucket list - 42 Free or Cheap Days out in the North East

Entertaining kids can be so expensive, especially in the six weeks holidays. Whilst I balk at the idea of spending more than £30 on an item of clothing for me, we will regularly end up spending that if we head out for the day with the kids. We are really lucky in the North East to have so many options for free days out, from out beautiful beaches to the fantastic parks in the area. But sometimes it's hard to think of them all, so I've had a brainstorm and put as many as I can think of in this list. I considered 'cheap' to be less than £7 in total for the cost of an activity for an adult and two kids. I've come up with 42 so thats one for every day of the school holidays. Hopefully this might be a page that you return to a few times over the summer holidays to get some ideas that won't leave you eating baked beans for dinner 6 nights a week. 

Splash Pads, paddling pools and outdoor swimming - water play in the north east

Splash Pads, paddling pools and outdoor swimming - water play in the north east

Okay, so we might not get many hot days, but when the sun is shining there is nothing quite like playing in water for kids. In the North East we are really lucky to have a quite a few options for where to cool down when it warms up. Lets face it though, we could have a cold and wet summer and most kids would still love to play in a splash pad or take a dip in a paddling pool. Read on for some ideas about where to head and information about opening hours. 

Little Land Play - Peterlee

We recently visited Little Land Play in Peterlee. One of the newest role play centres to open in the North East. I've been to quite a few role play centres now, and I *think* this one is the biggest? If it isn't, then for me it has the best layout and sense of space. It has been really well designed, with lots of room for kids to run around, but so that parents can view the whole play space from the seating area. The role play area walls are only as tall as kids' height and none of them had front walls/doors so there were no nooks or crannies for kids to hide behind to get.

Winter Wonderland at Whitehouse Farm

Winter Wonderland at Whitehouse Farm

I had heard great things about the Winter Wonderland at Whitehouse Farm on various facebook groups, so I was really pleased when they got in touch to ask us to come along and see if for ourselves. Whitehouse Farm is a perfect for toddlers as there are so many things included in the entrance fee. Winter Wonderland falls into that category. There is no extra charge to visit Santa, write a letter to him (and receive a reply before you leave), join Elf school, or to walk through the winter wonderland. The usual Whitehouse Farm attractions are all still on, some of them - like the tractor rides - have even been given a Christmas touch. 

Breakfast With Santa at Wyevale Garden Centre Gosforth

Breakfast With Santa at Wyevale Garden Centre Gosforth

I have written a few posts about Breakfast with Santa across the North East, but until last weekend I didn’t really know what they entailed. Wyevale Garden Centre in Gosforth got in touch with us because they read my round up post, and invited us to breakfast with Santa, so we took them up on their offer and went along last Saturday.

Santa is clearly an early riser as all of the breakfasts are scheduled for 9am, so getting there was a bit of a struggle for someone like me who is always running late, but for once we arrived bright and early and on time. We headed to the cafe where we were given a really warm welcome by Mrs Claus who showed us to our table, which was looking very festive, set up with crackers and Christmas decorations.   

Our Family Adventure with Metro

Our Family Adventure with Metro

This is a collaborative post.

Tyne and Wear Metro recently got in touch to tell us about their new booklet 'Metro's little book of things to see' which is a guide for famililes on some of the brilliant places to visit along the metro line. The booklet is free of charge and available from any of the nexus travelshops. As well as detailing loads of places that families might like to visit, it is has metro related actvities for kids to try out, such as wordsearches, spot the difference and quizzes. Our favourite game was the #metromission which was a list of things to look out for whilst on family days out, scoring points for each item checked off. It is a really nice little guide and one that I would recommend you pick up if you are going to be out and about with kids on the metro, to add to the fun of getting catching the 'train' and  give the kids something to do to help to pass the time.

Scran with Santa 2017 - Grottos with grub across the North East

Scran with Santa 2017 - Grottos with grub across the North East

This week Fenwick's breakfasts and teas with Santa went on sale...and went off sale. They sold out in a day. Whilst you might have been too late for those the good news is that this year there are SHEDLOADS (over 30 in fact) of other dining with Santa options. Tonnes of them, still with availability, so if it's not Christmas to you without feasting with Father Christmas then read on and decide if you would like, breakfast, lunch, tea or ice cream with the big man.

No Tickets: No Problem. Why you should visit Durham Lumiere next weekend.

No Tickets: No Problem. Why you should visit Durham Lumiere next weekend.

Hello! Now that Halloween is over and done with its starting to feel a bit festive. One of my favourite events returns next weekend, and whilst it's not Christmassy it is one that gets me excited for winter. Lumiere Durham is on 16, 17, 18 and 19th November 2017 and it's brilliant.

It is a festival of light being held across the city, which returns to Durham every two years. We in the North East are mega lucky too as the only other cities to host it are Derry and London. It's absolutely FREE and having been the past two times it has been to Durham, I can honestly say its spectacular.

Tyneside Rocks - The sweetest way to keep kids entertained this summer

Tyneside Rocks - The sweetest way to keep kids entertained this summer

Hello. I'm so excited to be bringing you this post to let you know that you and your little uns are invited to play the biggest game of Finders Keepers there has probably ever been in the North East. If that wasn't exciting enough, it's also got the sweetest Random Act of Kindness feel to it and I think it will be a brilliant activity for any North East kids.