iHeartFaces – Vacation

8 Jun

iHeartFaces is on vacation and inviting us to, in a non-competitive way, submit vacation photos. I’m not much of a holiday snapper. I’ve taken the older kids to Canada and the USA more times than I can remember and have very little photographic evidence to support this claim – and mostly they were too young to remember. At the time I was too busy whooping it up with being run ragged by them to be bothered lugging a camera around.

2008 saw us visit La France. With the camera still on Auto. Before we got Photoshop CS4. This is SooC stuff!

This was the first time I’d ventured into a non-English speaking country with my older son. He has a very serious peanut/treenut/coconut/legume allergy and whilst I can handle “y a-t-il des noix ?” I’m not up to discussing all possible legumes in French. MrW’s pretty nifty at le francais tho so combined with the fact we were staying in a fully equipped villa we figured he’d be safe enough.

After a gruelling 12 hour overnight drive to London what better way to spend the day then in a theme park? Hahahaha! Chessington World of Adventure.

Further on to the South Coast and Folkestone. With a very steep beach. And wind.

The Channel Tunnel to France. with big posters everywhere banning flash photography. Guess what I’m saying?

At the villa in Le Touqet we met up with my sister and her family and my parents. My parents flew to Paris and rented a car. Sensible move. 30 minutes and 20 odd miles away the beaches looked like this… still windy tho.

At Disneyland Paris we couldn’t be bothered lugging the camera much. It’s WAY nicer than Florida… way.  Despite numerous visits to Florida I’ve only done Disney once and once was enough. We’re a Universal family… but Disneyland Paris is really rather lovely. .

And tiring

Then to the whole point of picking that area of France as opposed to the South. First The Somme.

You had to be this tall to join up.

Thiepval

The Newfoundland Memorial Park at Beaumont-Hamel.

Then a day trip to Paris. There’s a fine Scottish word for someone who wears gloves and a hoodie in 80 degree heat – TUBE. Pronounced “tchoob”.

And innit funny how no matter where you go you always bang into someone you know….

The highlight for me was our trip to Ypres in Belgium. Here we squeezed in a whirlwind tour of some of the most beautiful memorials to the fallen of WW1 including Tyne Cot

And Langemarck

We visited a preserved trench at Sanctuary Wood

The In Flanders Fields museum in Ypres, in my opinion the museum that should serve as a blueprint for every other building that claims to be a museum.

Then we closed the day at the Menin Gate where we had the great honour of participating in the daily Last Post Ceremony. MrW read the famous extract from Binyon’s For The Fallen

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

Then my Dad, my two older children and my nieces laid a wreath in memory of my great grandfather who was with the British Expeditionary Force and died at the 1st Battle of Ypres in 1914.

His name is carved on the Menin Gate itself as he has no known grave.

And that was France. My son survived. He’s developed a real talent for languages in the past year and should manage to travel anywhere they speak French or Spanish by the time he leaves school and order non-lethal food. MrW and him have been back already with the school and MrW will be returning with my daughter’s year group in 2010 leading a trip specifically to visit the battlefields. It’s a bit of a passion of his and I thoroughly enjoyed this fleeting glimpse of it. Next time we go with no children. They have rather lovely beer in Belgium.

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13 Responses to “iHeartFaces – Vacation”

  1. Life with Kaishon June 8, 2009 at 5:15 pm #

    Wow. You have gone to some amazing places as a family! I know the family will look back on these times with wonderful memories. Very cool!

  2. Emily June 8, 2009 at 5:29 pm #

    I love your pictures. They are amazing. It makes me want to pack up right now and get on a plane to France. It is beautiful and the pictures of your family honoring your great grandfather are something to treasure. Thanks so much for sharing.

  3. erica June 8, 2009 at 7:30 pm #

    what beautiful pictures! looks like you had a fabulous time!

  4. Becca June 8, 2009 at 10:40 pm #

    These are amazing! 🙂 I LOVE them all and I’m doubly impressed if they’re really SOOC! 🙂 you are talented for sure!!!

  5. Foursons June 8, 2009 at 11:57 pm #

    Great perspective on your photos!

  6. Mr W June 9, 2009 at 1:32 am #

    These photos bring it all back… I hadn’t realised I was in so many of them either!

  7. Diana Rambles June 9, 2009 at 1:49 am #

    Awesome photos! Mine is here.

  8. Herb of Grace June 9, 2009 at 3:13 am #

    Beautiful, beautiful. What an amazing memory for your kids. I hope we have a chance to do something similar with our kids some day.

  9. Dean's Mommy June 9, 2009 at 5:17 am #

    Beautiful! Your photos make me want to go back immediately, thank you for sharing!

  10. Niecey June 9, 2009 at 10:30 pm #

    Looks like an excellent and educational vacation. Awesome photos!

  11. jessicaisawinner June 10, 2009 at 4:24 am #

    great photos!

  12. mandi June 11, 2009 at 2:50 am #

    Amazing job! Your camera has a great auto setting! I hope one day to visit Europe.

  13. tanisha long June 13, 2009 at 6:19 am #

    beautiful family! love your photos!

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