Tuesday, June 18, 2013


I've been spelling it Middlesborough.  It's the northern accent; they pronounce it as if it has an "o" between the b and the r, but it doesn't, and I've just found that out.  Oh well.  You learn something new every day.

James, who's been living with us this year, is from Middlesbrough, and when he suggested that we plan a weekend trip to visit his family and friends, the kids jumped on the idea excitedly.  I have been looking forward to going on this weekend adventure too; though we tried to explain to the boys that Middlesbrough is just another town like ours, albeit much closer to the sea.  This didn't rain on their parade at all.

We drove up north via York and arrived in Middlesbrough at tea time.  James' parents cooked us a yummy meal which was substantial enough for our hungry little horde, and then we managed to get the kids in bed.  They were bouncing off the walls with excitement over staying in a new house and the thought of going to the beach the next morning.  Looking out at the grey sky, I wasn't sure how great a beach day it was going to be.  Fortunately, I was wrong, and our day out at Saltburn-by-the-Sea was bright and beautiful.

We had the first lazy morning we've had in a long time on Father's Day Sunday, eating delicious pancakes made by James and his sister Hannah.  The four kids played happily most of the morning with James' old toys: a set of Playmobil pirates, complete with a ship and treasure island; and Star Wars Legos.

The remainder of the day was spent down the road with generous newfound friends.  We ate a delicious dinner and enjoyed meeting many new people. The boys played with Legos and Coo loved these Sylvanian Families toys.

After food, we went to Preston Park where everyone played, even the grown-ups.

The kids were very busy with new friends and new toys --always a good combination for adults who'd like to sit back and drink coffee together --at least until it was time to go home.  Then a sort of hide-and-seek ensued.  Daddy always wins, though, and eventually we walked back to the house and didn't have to wait long until our little people were asleep.  They were exhausted, and still are!

Monday morning saw us saying goodbye to James and his family, and driving through Yorkshire for a day full of adventures at Fountains Abbey and the Brontë Parsonage Museum. We drove home in the light evening through the Peak District.

Twilight didn't really fall fully until we'd arrived home an hour before midnight.  These long summer days are exhausting but beautiful, and certainly are a benefit when you're sightseeing.

We're so thankful for all the people who made our stay in Middlesbrough a fun and all-too-short trip: James, Helen and Chris, Hannah, Tom, and the Alberti family.


  1. It seemed like a very good trip. Glad you all could do that.


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