Late last Sunday, while feeling a little bit guilty for having spent the weekend away from the kids, we decided to go out together. I was happy to walk down to our local beach or woods, but Dave suggested driving to one of our favourites, West Dale.
The road into West Dale is very narrow with no passing points for a long stretch of it- thankfully I have never came across another vehicle and had to reverse…yet!
It is so pretty though, so I always forgive and forget this point until the next time we visit!
There a are a couple of bays for parking. We parked by the field full of sheep (you’ll know what I mean if you ever come here!) There is a path from this field straight down to the beach, but it is quite steep so we walked around the road and steps way, but returned to the car on this cliff path as going up is easier with young kids.
We passed Skomer Island, you can visit here on a boat from St Martin’s Haven and see all the protected wildlife.
Despite living in Pembrokeshire for most of my life, the heights and hills don’t come naturally to my short legs. The big kids ran ahead, Dave helped Izzy and I carried the bags steadily (this is a huge improvement, at one point I used to be scared to carry anything when at a height- it was not just an excuse honest!).
All safely on the beach, we could dump our stuff and start exploring. Rebecca shows me Whelk Egg Cases.
This is the smoothest pebble ever apparently.
I kept spotting surfers riding waves through this frame of rocks, it would have made such a good photo but my lens failed me (yes, I will buy a better lens and take more photos for you- if you insist!).
We had a quick, shop bought picnic on the beach. That was the best I could muster with having been away.
This is not a sponsored or a review post, but I spotted my Mia Tui Matilda Mae lying on the rocks and thought it looked quite at home! I love a bag that I can take anywhere and it never looks out of place.
Izzy wanted to climb up here like her older brother and sisters but couldn’t work out how. I took a cute little video of her.
The youngest and oldest have a together moment. People always ask me if the kids get on and which ones get on best and I struggle to answer. Honestly we have moments where they all get on, sometimes some get on better with others and sometimes we have “Sibling Wars”. It changes all the time. I suppose I could describe it as they get on but have regular fall outs. Danny loves his biggest little sister, Rebecca but hates how she loves One Direction, but I think this is a fairly typical sibling attitude?
Even though we have been expecting Spring and Summer, it has surprised me this year how I need to be all of a sudden leaving off the layers and applying sun screen again.
We hadn’t packed anything for the beach apart from food (it is so much easier to not be weighed down with bags!). I just thought this would be a picnic, explore and walk kinda day. The best days are the ones that you never expect and soon all the kids bar Izzy were down to their pants and paddling.
Danny looks a bit John Travolta in Staying Alive (minus the white suit) in these photos!
We had insisted that t-shirts stay on for some warmth, but once Danny’s was wet, he whipped it off to dry on the rocks.
I love this photo!
Here are their clothes drying on the rocks.
When I was little and went to the beach, I had fun all day, but dreaded the moment we had to get dry and dressed, you could never get dry enough and always ended up with more sand on you than before. I’m sure I used to have a moan and dread the same with my kids. We had no towels, so they sat on the rocks eating cookies to dry, then I wrapped them all one by one in my coat as Dave calmly helped them dress. As he chatted and joked with them, I think it took their mind off the wet, sandy socks and slightly damp clothes he was putting on them!
When I was keeping Danny warm in my coat, two of the girls came to cuddle him to give him their warmth as they know it is harder for him to warm up on the beach.
I took the easy option off the beach with the bags, while Dave took the more adventurous route with the kids.
We then walked up the direct route to the car. It’s a shorter route but quite wearing, so we stopped to let Danny rest half way (I admit I was grateful for the rest too!). While we rested and had water, Dave walked back with Rebecca and Caitlyn. On the step we were sat on I couldn’t let go of Izzy, it just felt like she would fall straight of the edge back down to the beach! She wouldn’t have, of course, but I get so irrational around heights. I’m glad Dave shows them a more reasoned approach, so they don’t all end up scared like me!
One more glance at West Dales, as we made our way to the car.
The girls picked up a little bit of sheep’s wool from the field and we reminded the kids of the importance of keeping the farmer’s gates closed.
Who needs a gift shop when you have a shell, a pebble, some wool and a shoe full of sand to remember your day?