If you’ve travelled with a child/children you know exactly what I am about to say. But more specifically this applies to times when travelling abroad or to an all-inclusive style holiday. The flights, the pools, the sunshine, the free flowing food and ice cream (literally) on tap. Luckily our next trip in July is to a villa in Portugal with James Villas where we can control the sugar in take a little more...!


We have recently got back from a week in Majorca and I can’t even begin to tell you the amount of bribes and lies that came out of my mouth whilst we were there. I was actually annoying myself so much at the amount of rubbish I was saying!

“Oh okay, no ice cream then”

“Do you want to go to the beach?”

“Ok no lollies at the beach”

“Alright if you don’t want to put your sandals on then we can’t go to the pool and see your friends”

I was like a BROKEN. RECORD.

I swore I’d never be one of those parents. The ones telling all sorts of fibs just to get their kids to eat at the table for longer than thirty seconds. HA! How foolish I was.

On holiday it’s a little like a sensory overload. The plane, the travelling, the sun and the pools. There’s just so much for them to do and see that I am not surprised they go a little nuts. And the pressure. You have this image that you will all sashay off of the plane dressed in your finest travel attire with a calm sleepy child and holding onto your designer hand luggage. When in reality you’re all tired from the 2am wake up to get to the airport, the kids have been playing up on the flight so you’ve, yet again, been using every excuse you can to keep them still. Or maybe they slept so now they’re all grouchy as you need to get them up and put the seat belt on them to land. That first day is never that magical Disney-like arrival to your destination. You’re all tired and haven’t settled into your new home for the week. We always say day one is a non-starter. Wait for day two to feel the magic I say...

Holidays with kids simply are not holidays like they used to be. There’s no real rest. You’re policing poolside fights over the inflatables and buckets you’ve all bought but have now got all mixed up. You’re trying to make sure they don’t run so fast around the pool that they slip in. You’re trying to distract them from seeing the self-service ice cream machine by the bar. You aren’t laying on a sun lounger with your new book or your headphones in. Nuh uh. Those days are long gone. For now at least.

Eventually when you get them to sleep after the kids disco, you’re back in your room trying not to make a sound so you don’t wake them. Flicking through your phone looking at the photos from the day, you smile. You’re creating wonderful memories for these little creatures. And it is so worth all the hassle trying to get suncream on them and making sure they don’t climb over the balcony while you aren't looking. You truly wouldn’t have it any other way.

This year I am a James Villa Ambassador! What I am looking forward to about our next trip is that we will have our own space, our own pool and with villa holidays you get to do things on your terms and timings. I love an all inclusive holiday, definitely, but with a villa you can make it a little more your own and it'll be a lot quieter. We've been away in a villa before and having that independence really makes a difference.

We're off to the Algarve in Portugal in July and luckily we already know the area so well. We must've been to the Algarve over ten times in the last few years as one of our closest friends has a house there, so we know our way around.

I'm excited to just jump in the hire car and whizz to the shops and stock up the house, get some inflatables for the pool and make it feel like home for a week. The one uncertainty I've always found with staying in hotels with kids is the sleeping arrangements. Will the bed be big enough? Do they have blackout blinds? Is it noisy outside the hotel room? When it comes to villas you are usually in a nice quiet area and you can see the bedrooms available, and even floor plans online, so you can work out which room would be best for the little one. But trust me, we'll still be popping to the shops for some tin foil if it's a little too bright in the room! (please tell me you know about the tin foil trick?!) Once he's asleep we have a whole house to roam about in, we could even have a cheeky evening dip in the pool without having to worry about the little monkey who is so intent on not having daddy's help but swimming on his own!

And if you're anything like me you'll secretly be living for the moment your partner tells you to take an hour to relax and they’ll take the little one off for a walk so you can enjoy a Cuba Libre and lay in the sun in peace. That one hour holiday feels like a week when you're a parent.


I am a James Villa Ambassador for 2018. This is a sponsored post.