Laura Hamilton Laura Hamilton

Rested, relaxed and ready to start working again…

Anyone who follows me on Instagram or Twitter will have seen that I’ve been on a family break to the Maldives, one of my favourite places in the world. Mirihi is one of the smallest islands in the Maldives, with little to do but that is what makes it so special. I have visited this particular island a couple of times and even after 8 days of relaxing I felt like I could have stayed for longer!

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The children were so happy living a simple life for 8 days, discovering the sea life, finding lizards camouflaged on trees and watching the fruit bats hanging upside down from the palm trees.

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We took a boat out for a few hours to snorkel around a reef close by and Rocco absolutely loved it. Alex could see the excitement in his eyes and I could hear him shouting through the snorkel back on the boat, when he looked below and saw an array of colourful fish. I’m quite scared of jumping off boats into the open ocean, but watching our fearless 3 year old son do it made me think ‘come on Laura get in’, so I did!

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We decided to keep the children on UK time whilst we were away. Although it meant they were staying up later with us, they weren’t waking up until 9am which was nice because Alex and I got a bit of a lie in. It can be one of the benefits of flying East with little ones. Flying West however, is a different story! With a 5 hour time difference it meant there would be a few early starts for us on our return.

So with the Maldives ticked off the children’s travel list, it was time to head some where else beginning with the letter ‘M’… Madeira.

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Madeira is a Portugese Island (that’s actually closer to Morocco). I have visited a couple of times pre-children. I remember the island mostly for it’s pretty flowers and a basket ride down the steep, winding roads. Yes you read that correctly, a basket ride! I promised Rocco and Tahlia a ride in a basket down a hill, after showing them an online video of it.

Madeira is a beautiful island. It’s subtropical climate and landscape reminds me of St Lucia (without the beaches). It’s around a 3 and a half hour flight from the U.K. and let’s just say landing on the island is somewhat of an experience! Apparently only a certain number of pilots are trained to land there.

For this episode I decided to wear some loose fitting, palazzo trousers from Silk Fred and a green silky vest from Oasis. It was great getting to visit Cabo Girao, Europe’s highest cliff skywalk and glass platform. I was slightly freaked out looking down even though I’m not normally scared of heights. I also loved visiting the food and flower market in Funchal which is open every day.

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Whilst I was working, the children enjoyed a trip on a sightseeing bus and a fun afternoon at the Lido on the water slides. As soon as I could join them, we spent an afternoon exploring the city by foot, enjoyed lunch at The Ritz Madeira, and then we took the cable car ride up to the botanical gardens, and the basket ride (that I had promised them) down! I enjoyed it as much as the children and I would say the cable car and basket ride is ‘must do’ in Madeira. We had a great week and I look forward to going back.

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This weekend I’ll be heading to Glasgow for the Place in The Sun exhibition. I’m also planning to trial an exciting new class at David Lloyd Gyms where I am a member. As someone who obviously loves the sun, I think their new class ‘Vitamin E’ is an amazing idea. Vitamin E involves light therapy, endorphin-releasing HIIT exercises and the scents and sounds of summer. Apparently on arrival, guests are greeted not with mats or dumbbells, but with sun loungers, the scent of sun cream, the sounds of waves lapping through their headphones and a pit of sand to dip their feet into. With the clocks going back this weekend, it will act as a mood-enhancing antidote to help banish winter blues. I can’t wait to try it and hopefully the class with become part of the winter timetable at the gym!

So as half term draws to an end, before Rocco goes back to pre-school, we will be enjoying Halloween. We have a few parties to attend and we’ve all got our costumes ready.

What are you all up to? I’d love to see your photos so tweet me or send them on Instagram.

I hope you had a good weekend. Until next time that’s it from me. Next week I’m Fuerteventura bound…

Laura x

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