Nelly Elliott

Newcastle based person, she/her, mama, creative, colourful, caffeinated, plus-size fashion lover, lefty feminist killjoy #funbutmakeitfashion


Making the Most of our Weekend - Lightwater Valley

Since going back to full time hours at work back in March 2018, I have really tried to make the most of our weekends as a family. So, with this in mind I thought I would start a new feature all about how we make time for ourselves as a family.

It is so easy to get caught up in the rat race of full time work then spend the weekend running errands and cleaning, forgetting to fit in the fun. I'm not going to lie and say everyone weekend is a high octane thrill ride, sometimes its just a quick trip to the leisure center swimming pool and feeding the ducks on the way home, but every moment, no matter how small, that we spend together as a family - this is how memories are made.

Having said that, this first edition of MTMOOW (making the most of our weekend) is pretty high octane, lets start this with a bang!

We decided to take a trip to Lightwater Valley - a theme park in Ripon, Yorkshire.

I haven't been to Lightwater Valley since a year 8 school trip! We did a quick search of similar places within a few hours drive, and it seemed the most affordable. I was a bit worried there wouldn't be many rides Zoe could do, but for kids over 1 meter tall there is LOADS. Although, most they have to be accompanied by an adult, which I wasn't super thrilled about. Although in all honesty I really did enjoy some of them.

I actually think I might be raising a little thrill seeker! She snubbed the 'baby' rides for the more exciting rollercoasters and the wonderfully names 'Trauma Tower'. She rode the Ladybird rollercoaster 8 times and cried when we had to leave as she wanted to have one more turn.

She even asked if she could try the Ultimate! Sadly she wasn't tall enough. We found the height charts super helpful for showing her why she couldn't ride, with the green/amber/red indicators she cottoned on pretty quick which she could ride.

The only downside to the day was the food, if we were to go again I would 100% pack a picnic. The food was expensive and all burger, hotdogs, chips and sweets - not a vegetable in sight. Also from an environmental point of view there was so much plastic, I would have liked to have seen a water fountain or free tap water on offer. Heck, I would have even paid to refill my bottle rather than having to buy multiples.

I know these places make their money on the concessions, but I was really disappointed by the selection on offer.

All in all a very successful trip, Zoe is dying to go back to the 'fun fair' as she calls it. Although at £55 for the three of us, we won't be able to do it that often.

Along with this new blog feature I will be starting the #makingthemostofourweekend #mtmoow hashtags and sharing some of my faves in subsequent posts or on my IG stories. Lets share how we make time as families, and share ideas for awesome activities over the summer!


  1. Ah we used to love visiting Lightwater Valley when the kids were younger. I love that there are no queues and there's a decent range of rides. I'd recommend trying their firework nights or frightwater valley in October/November. They're really good value!

    I can barely remember the food options if I'm honest, I think the UK as a whole need to buck our ideas up when it comes to theme park food. The rest of the world seems to do so much better!

  2. Hari O
    Nothing like a fun fair to bring out the child in us all! Carousels and dodgems are my faves. Not that have been on any in quite some years... This is a fab idea for a theme and to give a focus for the family. Well done to 'dad' for the photos of you both! YAM xx

  3. Newcastle Family Life3 August 2018 at 10:32

    My teen went here yesterday, I haven't been for years. It sounds like Zoe had a lovely day x


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