Archive - Travel

09.09.15 Summer I loved you long time…part two: France

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Their first surf lessons in Seignosse, Hossegor. Seb’s first tooth came out. We collected sand, stones and shells, crab claws, frogs, bugs and memories. And water blisters on their fingers from how long they spent in the water. Everyone had gone back to school and the beaches were bare. It was bliss.

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synchronised swimming kids

metallic tattoos

chalkboard living in hossegor

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08.09.15 Summer… I loved you long time. Part One – Greece

Kitty in Greece Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Greece by Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

Chalkboard living

I long for the eternal summer. This year we made it to Greece, Spain and France with lots of friends and lots of kids. They are bloody lucky and so are we. Not quite ready for Autumn yet.

I always miss the sound of the waves.

 

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16.04.14 Travel: Hill House Norfolk

hill house norfolk

hill house norfolk

hill house norfolk

A weekend in Norfolk…with the kids. Six adults, 9 children. One word – LUXFUN!

So you have to understand the first thing I type when looking for anything is the word ‘luxury’. I don’t always want or need luxury but without it i seem to pull up the dregs of the internet. Hill House Norfolk however definitely is up there with the term ‘luxury family weekend’.

It’s not often you can rock up to a self catering rental to a giant sized cocktail glass of sweets in the hallway, bottle of champers, and a mountain of lemon meringue cupcakes in the kitchen just waiting for you. This was no ordinary weekend self catering accommodation.

To see the rest of the images and full review please click on the link below. Continue Reading…

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08.01.14 Bill & Coo Suites Mykonos : So this is where you come without the kids

Christmas is over and I’m already thinking of Summer. Last May some friends and I spent a weekend in Mykonos at the Bill & Coo Suites. I’m feeling this is the time to pull out those blue sky pictures ready for a fresh bright new year.

www.chalkboardliving.com

Bill & Coo Suites are a collection of 24 rooms all based around a stunning pool, bar and restaurant in the centre. It’s small, and when I say small I mean intimate, not pokey. It’s stunning location is the first ‘Wow!’ but when you step through the door and view the design and styling of the hotel, I was really sold. I knew we’d come to the right place. It’s a chilled hotel, where serene trendy music hums in the background and people whisper not to annoy other guests. It’s not for kids…or loud shouty people, but if you can handle that you’ll be hooked. The staff are friendly yet incredibly professional and couldn’t do enough for us including giving us a phone to take out with us one night in case we got stuck in the town and couldn’t find a taxi back. We never wanted to leave. I think you can see why.

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

Breakfasts everyday were a treat to the senses.

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

The rooms were clean, sleek and white. Greek perfection.

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

I fell in love with these units imported from Italy. The chefs were very proud of their workplace too. Such a great feeling ran everywhere through the hotel from the staff to the guests.

bill and coo suites mykonos

bill and coo suites mykonos

It’s not cheap when you are there with cocktails working out around  17 Euro’s each but if you are careful and you eat out in the town some nights it balances itself out and is totally worth it for how relaxed you’ll feel when you leave.

bill and coo suites mykonos

www.chalkboardliving.com

Now I’m just crossing my fingers 2014 might be a good time to take a trip back 😉

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02.09.13 France with kids: Hossegor

Where we stay in South West France is close to two of my favourite towns. Hossegor is one of them and where I’d live if I could have a second house… and a few spare million in the bank.

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It’s a surfer town full of the cool kids. It’s charming, and laid back, with a swag of arrogance about it too. It’s the French version of Newquay with a lot of style. Even we had to tape down our wallets to stop ourselves buying Sebby a £100 skateboard, just because it was so damn cool. There are loads of cafes, surfer shops and small independent boutiques. You won’t find tons of children’s toys or clothes here but the kids were quite happy checking out the surfboards and skateboards and choosing gelato ice cream from what seemed like over 100 flavours.

hossegor gelato

It’s a well known World Class surfing spot, hosting the Quicksilver Pro France Competition stage of the ASP World Tour. It has sandy beaches which are also good for swimming, making sandcastles and general people watching and is patrolled by lifeguards between mid May and September. Apart from the beach however, there is also a canal and a huge seawater lake (du lac) which is surrounded partly by sand and on one side, large pathways and steps perfect for walking, cycling and fishing from. You can also take out pedalos for those kids that like a little water adventure.

Plus about 50m from the lake and the shopping centre is a shaded children’s playground, with a carousel and snack bar, perfect for a break from the shops or the heat of the Summer. Cycling is one of the best ways to get around but it’s not too big to walk around the main centre and take it all in. Summer can get busy for parking although you’ll generally find a space up a side street and walk into the centre.

The houses are a real mix of traditional French and stunning contemporary creations. There are a lot of new houses which could give any design lover a lesson in successful modern architecture and this in itself is worth exploring the area for.

My tips… after going to the beach:

Buy nets and fish at the side of the lake. Especially when the weather is not that sunny. It’s a great way to pass a few hours looking for baby fishes and crabs!

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fishing

My favourite homeware boutique: L’air du Sud 2 .

Our favourite eating spot with kids; Salon du the Marcot. It has  a small section inside and out but a larger seating area in the middle square opposite the restaurant, which had a fantastic atmosphere. A great choice of food including burgers, Croque Monsieurs and salads. They also did a mean mojito and the service was quick and with a smile with most staff speaking some English. I will say everyone in Hossegor seemed to just have one child or maybe two. We rolled about with 6 between us and so it did seem a little like a walking school sometimes and we did get turned away from one restaurant who I think were scared of a child invasion! After finding this little gem, who were happy to accomodate us, we ate here twice.

hossegor cafe

Take or hire some bikes for getting around.

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Or enjoy the people watching whilst eating gelato (that’s ice cream to you and me!)

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For more details check out inhossegor. The independent guide to Hossegor, France.

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19.08.13 We’re Home

chalk family

surf

skate

running

kidsjump

kids

 

 

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07.08.13 My Holiday Stuff: Henry aged 10

I asked the kids this week. What couldn’t you live without on holiday? Here’s what they picked. I love to see the difference in the kids, between what’s most important to them right now.

I’ll post one every day this week. This is the 10 year old gadget boy version 😉

Arsenal, sunglasses, rucksack, ipod, kindle, underwater camera

1. Arsenal Rucksack. It’s a really easy way to store all my essential stuff. And it has a little pocket where you can put your toothbrush and toothpaste. Plus, it’s Arsenal.

2. My Kindle. It’s really good especially on the journey here and at night. I finished all the Doctor Doolittle books and I’m now on my 5th Lemony Snickett!

3. My ipod touch. I watch movies on this and when you’re bored you can play games on it and listen to music. This is probably my favourite holiday item.

4. Underwater Camera. That’s just really good for the pool for taking underwater pictures. It’s my favourite colour blue and it’s just amazing.

5. Sunglasses. They just help me look really cool and obviously shade the sun, which there’s a lot of.

Henry age 10, www.chalkboardliving.com 050813_0462

Photos and styling by Tracey Chalk. Post production on images by Louise Freeland.

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05.08.13 My Holiday Stuff: Sebastian age 4

www.chalkboardliving.com

In case you hadn’t realised from my instagram, we’re on holiday with like 100 kids, well 6 to be precise. So I asked the kids this week. What couldn’t you live without on holiday?

Here’s what they picked. I love to see the difference in the kids, between what’s most important to them right now.

I’ll post one every day this week.

Sebastian – age 4

1. Lego – My mum put some of my lego in a lunch box so that we could bring some with us on holiday. I still play with it nearly everyday.

2. Monkey Baseball Cap – it’s really sunny here and it’s a gorilla one.

3. Nutella. (pronounced by Seb as Peanutella. Cute) I love chocolate spread.

4. Raphael (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle) Did you know he has real swords?

5. My lego Chima! He has wings too.

6. Sunglasses because they’re cool.

www.chalkboardliving.com

Photos and Styling by Tracey Chalk. Post production on images by Louise Freeland.

 

 

 

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05.06.13 The Chalk Diaries: Just another day in paradise

paradise mykonos

I’m back and focused on this thing called life. I miss the sunshine and the silence. The silence filled my head with a thousand ideas and yet gave me a serenity in my crazy head.

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I read.

www.chalkboardliving.com

Lived a little.

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I watched. Soaked in the beauty.

www.chalkboardliving.com

www.chalkboardliving.com

And explored just a little.

www.chalkboardliving.com

The trip was made by the hotel. Words cannot express, so i’ll post separately. I’m almost scared to share the secret in case it becomes fully booked for the next decade. Yes it really was that good.

Geez i needed it.

How have you been?

 

 

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12.02.13 Stockholm Design Tour : Meet the Blogger

Tiina of Elcestockholm guided us on a City Design tour around Stockholm to meet with the owners, designers and artists involved in four of the most inspiration design hotspots in Stockholm. My favourite without a doubt had to be the seductively simplistic and creative office and store of blogger and Stylist Lotta Agaton.

tassle decoration at Lotta Agaton shop

black balloons at Lotta Agaton Store

A woman with a love of black and white, who ties black balloons to bottles of San Pellegrino is a woman after my own heart. Her space is functional yet beautiful and i was particularly taken with the pom pom banner mainly for its neutral colour, mixed with metallics – perfect for Kitty’s room one day?! She collects items she loves from around the world to adorn her walls because the space is her office as well as a shop selling items she loves only on a Thursday every week. If you are in Stockholm on a Thursday I highly recommend you take a trip even if just for the inspiration and you’d be hard pushed not to be tempted by some of the fantastic prints she sells. The space is an education in Simple Scandinavian Design.

candle holder Lotta Agaton Store

This is what a party really looks like. Not neat and tidy for long!

In fact there was a little party at every stop. It was awful as you can imagine.

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