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Monday, 12 December 2011

Butlins for Christmas

As a child, Butlins was our annual holiday destination for years.  Back then, it was Barry Island, made famous by Gavin and Stacey, that was our camp of choice.  We used to love the holiday camp experience because me and my two sisters had the freedom to explore the resort, coming together with our parents for meal times and evening entertainment with the Redcoats.

Unfortunately, I was a painfully shy child who desperately wanted to join in with the evening's rendition of the 'Wiggle Wiggle Whoops' dance with the other children, but couldn't muster up the courage to do so.  It was pretty tragic!  Similarly I'd shiver in the corner of the swimming pool rather than splashing around with anyone.  I was so backward in coming forward, something I'd never wish on my own kids.  You miss out on so much being shy and retiring.

Butlins in the 70s....I'm the littlest!!
Fast forward to this weekend and I found myself back in the Butlins fold thanks to the rather inspirational Sally Whittle who had organised an amazing Tots 100 Xmas Party for us bloggers to attend.  It was a fantastic opportunity to combine some family fun into a blogger event, which is the best of both worlds as far as I'm concerned.


Bognor Regis was a five hour drive from Shropshire which was a bit arduous but well worth the effort.  We were staying in the Ocean holiday which was a world away from the hi-de-hi chalets of my youth!  Our room was modern, clean, spacious and funky!  The girls had a separate little room with their own TV and the bed and bathroom had colour changing mood lights (or rainbows as Freddy called them!)


The resort itself was based around the Skyline Pavillion which housed all the entertainment, eateries and amusements. It was all very razzle dazzle!!  There was so much going on to keep all ages having fun.  Freddy loved the little rides and the soft play area.  My girls were brilliant helping to look after him.



We watched shows...the Take That tribute act Beautiful World got me and my sister QWERTY Mum, Bloggomy's Lou and my girls up and dancing.  We were stage front and getting down!  Bjorn the Polar Bear was amazing...how did they do that??  The Guinness World Records show was enjoyed by my girls who built a Lego Tower in their record breaking attempt.


The outdoor funfair kept us occupied for a while and it was all free!  We also took a walk to the beach on Saturday which was a  bright, sunny day and simply perfect for clearing the cobwebs away!


In addition to the family stuff, Sally had organised a meet and greet with a festive tree decorating challenge for us bloggers to take part in.  We were Team C (for competitive!!) and we fiercely defended our scissors, sellotape and creative ideas in our bid to be the winning team.  Sadly we were beaten by the cranberry threading skills of my sister's team, despite us having a cheesy Christmas poem and everything!  But I was lucky enough to feel and squeeze myself to a win in another festive challenge, which involved a box full of items that we had to identify by blindly fondling through a hole.  My fondling skills are clearly well honed because I felt my way to victory! I am the sort of person who never wins raffles or public contests, but my incredulous response was soon replaced by delight!  Thanks Sally :)


We were also treated to a Christmas dinner that was preceded by Festive Cocktails.  Sally spoils us!  I had a great evening with some great company.  We had a small scandal that can only be referred to as Waitergate (poor Sam may never recover from his ordeal!)  There was some hilarity involving the dessert (prunes???  Seriously!  I'm regular enough, cheers!)  And I think Brian Turner hates vegetarians.  But it was a great opportunity to eat, drink and make merry.  It was particularly nice to get to know some bloggers I hadn't met or really chatted to before...Karen and Kate you were a joy!  Plus I got to catch up with my sister!


We ended a fabulous weekend with a visit to the big man himself!  The Enchanted Forest and visit with Santa was lovely and a perfect end to an absolutely lovely weekend away with the family.



Thanks to Sally and to Butlins for a great weekend.  I'm now feeling far more festive and have put my 'Wiggle, Wiggle, Whoops' childhood traumas away for good!

8 comments:

  1. Aww, lovely! I wish we'd made it to Father Christmas, but it was full :-(

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  2. It was great wasn't it? Lovely to see you again

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  3. What a comprehensive post - you are one talented lady.
    Was lovely to see you - wish it'd been for longer and wish I'd met Freds
    xxx

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  4. It was great to see you Wendy....so glad we were teamed up together in the challenge....we were sooo robbed!
    Shame that it was so hectoc & Kizzy & Hanna didn't get to spend more time together but no doubt there will be other times. Love the photo of Kizzy & the gingerbread man.,..not as scary as I thought it would be!
    x

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  5. What a fab post, must write mine up. I would never put you down as being the shy and retiring type : ) So lovely to meet you and your lovely sister. Hope all those donated sprouts didn't come back to haunt you.
    Still worrying about Sam ! Me and my big twitter mouth.

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  6. It was so nice to meet you. The kind donations of veg were greatly appreciated! The fabulous company at dinner more than made up for my lacklustre festive main course! Poor Sam...I wonder if he has recovered yet! xxx

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  7. Gosh! I remember those holidays we used to take at Butlins - how it has all changed for the better - it looks as though you had a fabulous weekend and the pics and blog are great.

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