Monday Money #54 – Holiday and Trophy Time

Good Morning! Totally going to keep this one shorter as I’m sat on a balcony in Corsica, listening to the sea gently lapping the beach and watching the sun rise over the Med. This is week I am a digital nomad and I am working from Corsica.

The wonderful Mark Warner holidays have treated the boys and I to paradise (I say treated, we did pay, but did get a generous discount, thank you Polly & team). We are staying the San Lucianu resort, around 30 minutes from Bastia in Corsica. It really is beautiful. We stayed here two years ago, but there are so many improvement at this visit.

Holiday and Trophy Time

Our room is stunning, we have 2 linked rooms both with sea, pool, gardens view. So far we have tried lunch and dinner, both were incredible home cooked with local ingredients food. The wine is plentiful and included. Its pretty big here so you never feel crowded, and if a child is shouting too loud just move to one of many sun loungers dotted around the gardens, beach area.

Travel Saving Tips

I wrote a great post a week or so ago about all the things we did to save money in preparation for holiday, airport parking, foreign currency, travel insurance etc. But I have more tips! We arrive at Stansted airport at 3am on travel day, yes 3am, and had to wait even for check-in to open at 3:30am. I thought about moaning, then sat on the floor and played on my phone, answering the boys repeated questions of what time is it 35 times.

We got through everything once open very quickly, the self-service from EasyJet was brilliant. Dylan and I headed straight to Boots to grab toothbrushes (we forgot) and snacks for plane (water, Pringles and choc buttons). Then we headed straight for breakie. Top saving tip. In the Easy jet app, very well hidden, there are airport money saving offers. If you head to itinery, offers you will find it there. We could get either 15% off in coast to coast or giraffe. They were right next to each other. 

The boys chose Coast to Coast, mainly for the pancakes. They have a very good value children’s menu of 3 or 5 their choice of items breakfast, Josh had 2 pancakes, bacon, beans, eggs. I had soy milk porridge with banana and sunflower seeds which was lush. The five of us ate a lovely and quickly served breakfast with drinks for £41. I think that is a bargain.

I then just happened to lose them for 20 minutes with hubby not answering phone so I had to sit at champagne bar and have a Bellini. Okay at £11.50 that perhaps wasn’t good value, but it was 5am, and holiday time, you have to have a drink at the airport right?

Half Term Savings

Of course it was half term last week, yes before you question it I am pulling the boys out of school for four days this week. One day was an inset day anyway. And its Dylan’s last few weeks at primary school, where they are doing so little. It is our last chance to have school term time holiday as I know you can’t really do it at secondary school. There was no fine by the way, because our attendance is normally 100%.

Back to half term. We saw Aladdin and used our Kidspass, saving us 40% on our tickets, popcorn and drinks. I liked it, Will Smith was great, very funny. But it felt a bit contrived and anti-feminist. The film end with Jasmine marrying Aladdin, not a plot spoiler, come on, everyone knows the story. And I left feeling deflated. She had just been made Sultan of her empire but yet has to marry a man at the end of the film for happiness. Nah life isn’t a fairy tale.

I am more of a Moana film, proper girl power film. And I love the Rock.

We did a bit more last minute holiday shopping, found sliders in Next for £10 for Dylan, rather than the £16 ones on Amazon. I try to NOT shop at Amazon. I know their customer operation is so slick, quick, but they are not always the best value for money. AND THEY DON’T PAY ENOUGH TAX! Come on this country is in a mess and needs every penny it can get for things like education, health, police, fire services. I know I moan about paying tax, but its a very necessary thing for the UK to survive. Rant over.

I got sliders and a swimming UV top for Jack. There are rules at Mark Warner. Kids club members must wear UV tops and hats at all time. Sun cream re-applied at regular intervals.

Drinks in London

I had drinks in London on Thursday night. Yes I was supposed to be eating clean, so I stuck to gin. More on that later. But I did have quite a few gins. We tried to save money by leaving the redic trendy and very expensive bar near Granary square and moved on to cheaper bar right by canal side. It was a messy night and I got home at 2:47am after a £25 taxi ride from Welwyn as I missed last train to Knebworth. This was not a money saving night out, nights out drinking cost a lot of money. But I love my old EE crew, our thing is boozy nights out and we have a lot of fun.

Football Presentations and Tournaments

We had a football presentation evening for Dylan’s Stevenage team where he won parents player, unbelievably proud, I cried. District football is only for U11 age group. Its the root to England schoolboy football. We got to play the other district teams from Southern counties, so teams like St. Albans, Portsmouth and Birmingham. It is the only thing allowed alongside Academy football (and school football, but Dylan isn’t interested in that) as it is only for the best boys in a district. Such an honour for Dylan to win that award, it was the parents comments that made me cry. He is a very talented boy.

AND THEN Josh made his comeback to football on Saturday. He re-joined his Letchworth eagles team on Saturday for their home venue summer tournament. The sun was out, the parents were super chuffed to have him back and he scored a cracker of a goal 45 seconds into the first game. Again I cried.

Josh and trophy

The boys went on to win the entire tournament and Josh scored 11, yes 11 goals. He had a blip, he needed a break, and he has come back stronger and on fire.

Eating Clean, Train dirty with Victoria At Future Fit

And of course I was eating clean, and am still (doing my best) to eat clean on holiday. I started on Sunday 26th. Victoria had planned us a lovely menu, with fresh, clean ingredients. Day 1 was fine (except I ate popcorn at cinema), Day 2 was fine, Day 3 was awful, headaches, sleepy, angry. Day 4 was good and day 5 I had a hangover.

Eating clean & Vege

I got weighed on day 5 and had LOST 4 lbs in 5 days. That is impressive! I feel fitter, my skin is better my hair and nails are stronger. I am carrying this on! As well as the food we did lots of exercise. 5 sessions of boot camp were included in the program. We did circuits, Pilates, HIIT, boxing and core work. Each was very different and equally hard. I enjoyed the Pilates the most, boxing the least, but only because it was technical and I hadn’t properly done it before.

On holiday I making good choices with food, lots of fruit, veg, fish. I am drinking wine, as its included. And maybe a daily Apperol Spritz (I have to pay for any non wine beverages, so will keep to minimum!). And I will do exercise everyday. Yesterday travel day I just did 10k steps, I think that is enough!

Plus Vic set up a Whatsapp support group for the 6 members eating clean. This was an invaluable support group and was so funny on the Friday morning when three of us admitted our drinking from the previous day, it was confessional time!! As well as lose weight I have gained friends. Love it.

Victorias plan costs just £65. It was well worth it and I recommend it to any local to Knebworth, Oaklands, Woolmer Green, Welwyn, Stevenage person to give it try. This is me after 5 days. My skin looks pretty good. And hair despite the greys.

Me after 5 days Eating Clean

That’s it for now, okay I didn’t keep it short, but i can type fast. I am off for a run. On the beach with others whom I hope are not super fit marathon runners, wish me luck.

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Lynn Beattie

Aka Mrs MummyPenny

Personal Finance Expert

I write about personal finance made simple, lifestyle choices that will save you time and money, as well as products and services that offer great value.

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