For various reasons we’ve decided this year that instead of the kids having birthday parties, we’d go to London for a couple of days. We had decided this ages ago and talked to the kids about it. They had agreed to this at the time, though we weren’t too sure if they really understood. Well, the 1st birthday has come and gone and they both seemed fine with it—so hopefully a decision I won’t rue.

It turned out to be a good decision as one of the HE groups we are signed up to had arranged a trip to the British Museum to see the 1st Emperor of China’s Terracotta Army for today. (The 1st Emperor had a huge terracotta army of over 7000 life size figures made for his tomb.)

We drove in mid-morning on Monday and booked into a hotel near Kew Gardens for the night. We had packed a picnic lunch and ate in our room before heading into the city for the rest of the day. As we were on the outskirts of the city we needed to take a bus and then the underground to get to the city centre. Have to say—that is always the highlight of going to London for Kieran! We spent Monday afternoon at the Science Museum and the Natural History Museum. We all prefer the Natural History one, and weren’t impressed at all by the Science Museum. We had dinner at an Italian restaurant before heading back to our hotel.

As we had to be at the British Museum today by 11:15am, we just left the hotel right after breakfast and went straight there. The display was very good. There weren’t many items on display, but I thought the pieces there were very good and it was in such an intimate setting—you could really see the detail on the figures. Both children really enjoyed it as well—each picking a different statue as their favourites. I think the highlight of today for Hazel was seeing two little friends who used to be in her recorder class. After the museum we went to a Chinese restaurant on Charing Cross Road—we thought that would complete the theme for the day!

Then we decided to head back to Kew to get our car as we wanted to miss the rush hour traffic. Though we had to do one thing first—we needed to head to Parliament Square. We took a Double Decker bus (we had to wait for a second bus that had the front upstairs seats free!) down to Parliament Square. I don’t think we could have left the city until they saw Big Ben. It’s a bit of a ritual—they firmly believe Mary Poppins lives there—on a cloud above the clock! Unfortunately she wasn’t home, so to the underground we headed! And yes—we had two lovely days and neither of us took one solitary photo!

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