Post about "family"

Where to Enjoy the Best Family Holidays in Africa

The very best family holiday, in my opinion, is a safari. A safari offers absolutely everything and is a fun filled holiday, whether a young child or a teenager, and perfection is then ending up on the coast or sailing around an island at the end.Being a parent myself, I am always on the lookout for the very best family holiday and I come back to the same one time and time again, which is a family safari. It simply offers something for everyone, providing one has the budget. Whether you have young children (and there are always malaria free regions, such as in South Africa), or older children, then it simply ticks every box. I am lucky enough to take my family on safari every year and they have been happy enough to be my guinea pigs!The best family holidays take into consideration everyone’s interests and hobbies – whether you are an outdoorsy type of family who would like to have a private, tented camp erected just for you in a wildlife rich region, or whether you would love to simply fly camp for just a night beneath the stars. Then there are treehouses too, that one can sleep in for a night.Learn about other cultures – I remember watching my eight year old daughter spending time in Kenya with Maasai children – the only adults present were our guide and tracker, whom she knew well and trusted and who acted as her interpreters, and she sang and danced with the children and they taught each other songs – the fact they didn’t know each other’s language didn’t matter at all. I have never seen such laughter on both sides of the fence. And this to me is really important. In our western society, our children have so much and I do believe that in a gentle and sensitive manner, we should introduce them to other cultures and educate them accordingly. My children learned how to make bows and arrows, which trees were good to use for this, and how to shoot them. They learned how to make fires with no matches, they visited a school and spent half a lesson with other children, which was illuminating for everyone!They then learnt about the Maasai warriors and what it takes to become a warrior these days, together with learning about how these cultures are struggling to hold onto their identity in the 21st century. This is all very much here and now, and relevant. Perhaps you might like to go on a walking safari assisted with camels and led by Samburu warriors. Learn so much along the way.The children can then go off to the coast – perhaps to a beautiful villa which comes complete with a private skipper and boat and so the days can be spent with complete flexibility and freedom, snorkelling around islands and having picnic lunches on them. Or perhaps staying at a beautiful, chic, Robinson Crusoe lodge on its own private island? Going out with the fishermen in their Arab dhows and learning how to fish.Perhaps it might be sailing on a catamaran in Madagascar which is wonderful fun, and fishing and snorkelling and diving at random. If a luxury family safari is more your style, then you can stay in villas throughout Africa or luxury lodges and camps. Charter from place to place in your own aircraft which means that you don’t have to wait at any point. The best thing is to have your own private vehicle and guide which does allow one complete flexibility and freedom and it means that you can bond together as a family, without the need of making small talk with strangers at the dinner table.Namibia also offers wonderful family safaris, with quad biking on the desert dunes and adrenaline oriented sport invented for the desert, such as sand boarding etc. Spend time with cheetah, up close and personal – something children – no matter what age – always enjoy!Botswana too offers fabulous experiences – from sleep outs under the stars in the Kalahari desert, to being with habituated meerkat and quad biking across the salt pans. You can even go out for a couple of nights with your guide and bedrolls and have your own adventure, away from everyone! Or have a tented camp closed to you, headed by a wonderful guide who is so good with children and teaches them everything from learning about the night sky, to poling a mokoro (and in our family’s case – losing the pole!), but it is all good fun and educational.Ultimately, the best family safari is one where everybody has got something out of it. You return united as a family, sated and happy.

What Are The Greatest Changes In Shopping In Your Lifetime

What are the greatest changes in shopping in your lifetime? So asked my 9 year old grandson.

As I thought of the question the local Green Grocer came to mind. Because that is what the greatest change in shopping in my lifetime is.

That was the first place to start with the question of what are the greatest changes in shopping in your lifetime.

Our local green grocer was the most important change in shopping in my lifetime. Beside him was our butcher, a hairdresser and a chemist.

Looking back, we were well catered for as we had quite a few in our suburb. And yes, the greatest changes in shopping in my lifetime were with the small family owned businesses.

Entertainment While Shopping Has Changed
Buying butter was an entertainment in itself.
My sister and I often had to go to a favourite family grocer close by. We were always polite as we asked for a pound or two of butter and other small items.

Out came a big block of wet butter wrapped in grease-proof paper. Brought from the back of the shop, placed on a huge counter top and included two grooved pates.

That was a big change in our shopping in my lifetime… you don’t come across butter bashing nowadays.

Our old friendly Mr. Mahon with the moustache, would cut a square of butter. Lift it to another piece of greaseproof paper with his pates. On it went to the weighing scales, a bit sliced off or added here and there.

Our old grocer would then bash it with gusto, turning it over and over. Upside down and sideways it went, so that it had grooves from the pates, splashes going everywhere, including our faces.

My sister and I thought this was great fun and it always cracked us up. We loved it, as we loved Mahon’s, on the corner, our very favourite grocery shop.

Grocery Shopping
Further afield, we often had to go to another of my mother’s favourite, not so local, green grocer’s. Mr. McKessie, ( spelt phonetically) would take our list, gather the groceries and put them all in a big cardboard box.

And because we were good customers he always delivered them to our house free of charge. But he wasn’t nearly as much fun as old Mr. Mahon. Even so, he was a nice man.

All Things Fresh
So there were very many common services such as home deliveries like:

• Farm eggs

• Fresh vegetables

• Cow’s milk

• Freshly baked bread

• Coal for our open fires

Delivery Services
A man used to come to our house a couple of times a week with farm fresh eggs.

Another used to come every day with fresh vegetables, although my father loved growing his own.

Our milk, topped with beautiful cream, was delivered to our doorstep every single morning.

Unbelievably, come think of it now, our bread came to us in a huge van driven by our “bread-man” named Jerry who became a family friend.

My parents always invited Jerry and his wife to their parties, and there were many during the summer months. Kids and adults all thoroughly enjoyed these times. Alcohol was never included, my parents were teetotallers. Lemonade was a treat, with home made sandwiches and cakes.

The coal-man was another who delivered bags of coal for our open fires. I can still see his sooty face under his tweed cap but I can’t remember his name. We knew them all by name but most of them escape me now.

Mr. Higgins, a service man from the Hoover Company always came to our house to replace our old vacuum cleaner with an updated model.

Our insurance company even sent a man to collect the weekly premium.

People then only paid for their shopping with cash. This in itself has been a huge change in shopping in my lifetime.

In some department stores there was a system whereby the money from the cash registers was transported in a small cylinder on a moving wire track to the central office.

Some Of The Bigger Changes
Some of the bigger changes in shopping were the opening of supermarkets.

• Supermarkets replaced many individual smaller grocery shops. Cash and bank cheques have given way to credit and key cards.

• Internet shopping… the latest trend, but in many minds, doing more harm, to book shops.

• Not many written shopping lists, because mobile phones have taken over.

On a more optimistic note, I hear that book shops are popular again after a decline.

Personal Service Has Most Definitely Changed
So, no one really has to leave home, to purchase almost anything, technology makes it so easy to do online.
And we have a much bigger range of products now, to choose from, and credit cards have given us the greatest ease of payment.

We have longer shopping hours, and weekend shopping. But we have lost the personal service that we oldies had taken for granted and also appreciated.

Because of their frenetic lifestyles, I have heard people say they find shopping very stressful, that is grocery shopping. I’m sure it is when you have to dash home and cook dinner after a days work. I often think there has to be a better, less stressful way.

My mother had the best of both worlds, in the services she had at her disposal. With a full time job looking after 9 people, 7 children plus her and my dad, she was very lucky. Lucky too that she did not have 2 jobs.