A family visit to Dogsy Ma Bone at Touchstones Rochdale

Our family blog has given us many opportunities so far that would have been unnoticed to us otherwise. This post is a great example of this. Even though we are not that far away from Rochdale we had never planned a visit to that city before, until we were approached by the Liverpool Biennial team. This time we were kindly invited to attend the launch of the exhibition of Dogsy Ma Bone, the production from Marvin Gaye Chetwynd.

We were quite surprised and in all honesty I had to google the artist and the show, but we are always opened to new family experiences that help us get closer to different activities.

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As they explain it very well on their website “In 2016, Chetwynd worked with 78 young people from Liverpool to create a new film and performance, using the city as a backdrop to the action. Originally commissioned for Liverpool Biennial 2016, the work is inspired by Bertolt Brecht’s Threepenny Opera (1928) and Betty Boop’s A Song A Day (1936).”

Well, we explained to our little ones a bit more about it and told them we were going to see a little show made by kids and for kids. Our 5 year old’s first reaction was “I want to be part too!” haha, as usual, she likes being the star of the show everywhere we go. 😉 Anyway, she finally understood.

When we got there we still had a bit of time to walk around the museum and see other galleries. It is quite well thought for families, since facilities, access for prams and children area are in to easy access. Staff were quite friendly too, must say.

So before the performance started, the organisers explained to us the hows and the why. They said it was definitely a great opportunity for Rochdale to boost youth’s creativity and talent. Then we met Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, the creator of this production, Dogsy Ma Bone.

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Finally a group of youth came out all dressed up in very peculiar fancy clothes. It has a purpose behind all, and if you watch the screening you will learn why they dress like that. They tell the story through the songs. All of them were sung live. Their voices and talent were amazing. Even our 1 year old was paying attention to them, which is really hard to happen.

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For kids, it is something they can enjoy since the rhythm of the music keeps them entertained and there are some props there too. For adults, you can read between the lines and understand a bit more of today’s society’s biggest issues since there is a clear message that comes across with the story of Dogsy Ma Bone.

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Anyway, Touchstones is a great museum, Dogsy Ma Bone is a good family activity and we were greatly surprised by Rochdale town centre and surroundings, which it seemed beautiful to us. So you might want to take advantage of the coming bank holidays or another day and plan a visit there. Dogsy Ma Bone will be there until July, so you’ve got plenty of time!

Our first ever experience getting kids into golf

A couple of weeks ago we were invited to the “Get Kids into Golf” event organised by OnlineGolf, the online golf shop for all golf products and news. We were quite excited to attend since our only experience with golf was crazy golf, and even that we haven’t played it very often!

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The activity was aimed to all children 3 years and above so our little J, who’s 5 years old, took full advantage of it. For our little boy, who is one year old was more just about chasing the balls around.

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We got there on time and met with other families. The place had been set up quite nicely and it was indoors, so the bad weather didn’t affect us at all. They organised us all into groups so the little ones could walk around every station and try a different exercise, guided by professional golf players and instructors.

In the beginning it was a bit tricky cause J is left handed so having to turn around and hold the club properly was a whole new thing -yep, we learnt that word at the event! we used to call it “stick” lol-

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In a fun and entertaining way they used every opportunity to teach the children the right terminology. So we also learnt that an “ace” was a hole in one or a “hook” when the ball curves to the left (they called it “captain hook” so the children would remember it) but it has actually helped me to remember it myself! haha and a “slice” (called it “pizza-slice”) when the ball curves to the right.

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By the way, position is so important! At the end, after enjoying a nice lunch, they gave us some free time to play all the games again, this time, grown-ups could participate too. I thought I would be able to do it, cause, honestly in my mind seemed quite easy…but apparently my body and the club don’t get along too well! I was terrible!!

One of the instructors performed a nice trick show, that all children loved. I would say that that was one of our little one’s favourite part.

You can watch the video of the event created by OnlineGolf here.

So why you should get kids into golf? Here’s one of the main top 5 reasons:

“Your kid will learn important life lessons! Playing golf your kid will experience highs and lows, from the first hole-in-one or birdie to a misplaced shot in a bunker. Golf will teach your kid that though we can’t always win, we always have another shot in life and skill comes with practice.”

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Our children are such a great example of this, with perseverance and a good attitude they can achieve whatever they want, and as in golf, we can’t always win, but we will always have another shot.

 

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Top 7 Christmas movies to watch this season

Nothing helps you more to get into the Christmas spirit than a good Christmas movie. Do not miss our top 7 Christmas movies to watch this season if you’ve liked some of our movie reviews. Maybe you can watch one every day for the last week before Christmas. Maybe you can do a little marathon movies with the little ones on a Friday night. Whatever you want to do, grab some popcorn, a few drinks and a blanket -nothing feels better than being under a blanket- and choose your movie:

#1 Home Alone

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This is a Christmas classic! Released in 1990, I was 7 years old when this movie came out but we watched it the other day with our little ones and our 5 year old couldn’t stop laughing with Macaulay Culkin’s interpretation. There are some things that are timeless and even though if that would happen nowadays mummy would just skype the kid and tell him she’ll be back soon, you still have a great time watching it.

#2 Miracle on 34th street

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Do you believe in Santa Claus? This is a tender movie that shows how the magic of Christmas brings back the happiness to a broken family through a non-believer 6 year old little girl and a white beard gentleman. One of the favourite movies of my husband to watch during this season.

#3 rise of the guardians

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Different to Guardians of the Galaxy, ok. Don’t get confused! I like that one too but today it’s all about Christmas movies. This 2012 animation is a perfect choice to watch with your little ones. It’s entertaining for all ages. It tells the story of how Jack Frost gets his powers back after he suffers from a period of amnesia. A must to watch with all the family. 🙂

#4 ELF

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Sometimes it’s hard to keep up with the Christmas spirit all the time. But this Elf shows you how to face the real world and don’t lose a cheerful bubbly personality. This is such a classic that even though it was released more than 10 years ago people still love it and there’s always a meme, a quote or a scene referring to this movie. J’s school are watching it at a movie night next week! 🙂

#5 foster

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Maybe you haven’t heard about this movie. We certainly hadn’t before arriving here to UK but on our first Christmas we saw the DVD at a store and we bought it for just 1 pound. We didn’t expect to cry with it and enjoyed it so much. The story of this married couple who lost their son on an accident and then crosses paths with this peculiar little boy will touch your heart. Don’t be misguided for its low price or promotion, it’s a very good Christmas movie.

#6 the nightmare before christmas

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If you are into spooky things and Tim Burton then this is your perfect Christmas movie. We watched it last year at home and J spent all the month of the December singing “Halloween Halloween This is Halloween!” hahaha It is a fun movie to watch, maybe if you’ve got very young children might be better to wait until they grow a bit more. 😉

#7 Love actually

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Ok, I’m putting this one on the list against my husband’s will because according to him this is not a great movie. It’s a so-so movie. But there is something in this film that I truly love, maybe it’s the simplicity, the love stories or the scenes at the airport where families get reunited, but this movie has for me, a special place in my heart and I enjoy it very much. I am the one who writes this blog, so yep, this is one of my top 7 Christmas movies to watch this season.

What are your favourite Christmas movies? I’m pretty sure you’ve got some good recommendations too! 🙂

Happy Mondays #5: The best ride in the park

Do you remember we told you we would share with you whatever makes us happy? No matter how small, how silly or how much it cost, if it’s something that made us laugh and/or enjoy ourselves we would tell you about it on our Happy Mondays post. This time we are going to tell you what is our favorite and best ride in the park for the whole family.

Going down the Zip-line!

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Ok, we have a bit of a doubt here cause we’re not sure if that’s how it’s said in English, but for the pictures you will know what we mean. 🙂 Every time we go to the park we give it a go. It’s one of those things that seem very silly in the beginning. You don’t feel like it or you think ‘I’m too old for this’ but as soon as you seat and lift your feet from the ground, adrenaline levels go high and you want to do it all over again!

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J was a bit scared the first time she tried it but now she enjoys herself a lot! It’s interesting to see how sometimes us, grown-ups, get caught by the things of life: work, commitments, bills, and all the bibs and bobs that could make your life daunting and boring. But every once in a while it is good to be like children and let yourself go, be spontaneous and have a blast with something so simple as the zip-line. Laughing can be healing. Laughing for no reason can be powerful.

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it looks like I was going super fast… I wasn’t! LOL

So next time you’re in the park with your kids, shut that little voice that tells you that you’re too old, or too boring or that everyone will look at you and just JUMP; lift your feet from the ground, feel the SPEED, and the EXCITEMENT, go down the ZIP-LINE, and LAUGH at yourself, LAUGH with your children and then, TREASURE those moments. They will come to your mind in the darkest times. And that, my friends, will make you happy.

Zip-lining runs in the family! Having an amazing time with Yayus and uncle A last September.

Do you have a favourite ride?! What do you do to release some stress? Tell us about it. 🙂

Share the Joy linky at TheJoyChaser.com

I love “Cheap Thrills”!

This is my entry for the Spanish Linky #VDLN (Viernes Dando La Nota) where every Friday you can share one or more songs that mean something to you and a little bit of the story behind.  So without further ado, my choice this week is Cheap Thrills from Sia.

Last Friday this song was in my mind but it was too difficult for me to share something positive after learning about the EU Referendum result.  Instead I decided to share my opinion on a blogpost. This week though, the future seems a bit brighter or at least quieter and I think this song it’s just perfect for a Friday night, weekend start, good vibes sort of thing… 🙂

As the future seems uncertain for the UK and us, as EU citizens, this songs just reminds me of the importance of holding tight to what really matters the most, which for me it’s my family. Sam and I like to tell each other that we are one another’s “constant” (This is quite a freaky thing, but it comes from the series Lost, where there was this character, and he would always appear in everyone else’s stories, no changes, always there, always the same) and yep, it is good to know that I’ve got him, and he’s got me, and we don’t need any money, cause we love cheap thrills! 😉

What’s that song that is stuck in your head and why do you like it so much? Let’s spread good vibes for the weekend, shall we?!

 

The Princess with Super-Hero’s cape

 

“The urge to create is equally strong in all children. Boys and girls. It’s imagination that counts. Not skill. (…)”

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A while ago I read about this letter that Lego posted back in the 70’s and it made me think of our little J. I used to think that there were toys meant for boys and other ones meant for girls. I should say it right, more than “meant” I would say “like”, boys like cars, girls like dolls. That was my thinking before having our first child. She has taught me better though. She has shown to Sam and I that there is no gender in “having fun”. She likes the tenderness and love for animals of Snow-white but also wants to be as strong as Hulk and as brave as Spiderman.

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However, society seems to work  from a different angle. If the girl is found running around in the store looking for a football or a truck she’s called a tomboy, if on the other side, she’s only into prams and dolls and loves wearing pink she is classified as a girly girl. I hate stereotypes, they will close all the doors of creativity and imagination. It’s sad to see sometimes when we go clothes shopping that most of the time, super hero themes and other animated characters, like the Minions, for example, are only on the boys section. When I was a child I liked pink, I didn’t like trucks or cars, and I loved drawing, dolls and make-up, and there’s northing wrong with that. We absolutely love J’s personality. She loves having fun racing cars, dressing up like a princess, like a witch, like a mermaid, or sometimes she will be a monster, superman or a ninja. For her, there’s no difference in playing, it’s the fun itself that counts. I’m pretty sure every stage will be unique but so far we’re so excited and grateful for every moment with her that cannot wait to see what’s ahead of us! The main thing is to remember not to fall into labels and get the most out of every memory you build with them.

Check what we mean with this little clip! J training to be some sort of Ninja (this was after watching “The Karate Kid” with Sam) haha

What are your children into? We’d love to read your stories as well! 🙂