Family holidays are fun. Awesome. Just you and your loved ones, human and canine, crammed into a house and getting away from it all. Except each other. Family holidays are the dream, idealized for months before the time, the idea of their relaxing qualities and cozy, loving perfection built up like sandcastles in the sky. But sandcastles fall after only one stamp of an angry little foot or sweep of incoming tide. Many family holidays dissolve in tantrums and tears as siblings revert to childish roles. After not having had a family holiday for a while, we packed up for a lovely long weekend and enjoyed every moment. This is, over the years, what we’ve learnt.
1. Make. Everybody. Eat … Often.
Almost everyone in our family gets super ratty when our sugar levels drop. Mom knows to have enough healthy snacks on hand – fruit, sachets of oats, crackers with spreads, yogurt, dried fruit and a few slabs of Bubbly to separate out after dinner. We always tell her that she’s taking too much – we’ll never get through it all – it will go off. It never does and I don’t know when we’ve bought home much. Danny has a mug that says “Mom is Always Right” and every family holiday, she proves it true.
1. To visit the only capital spanning two continents – which is seriously cool – and the crossing over the Bosphorus isn’t bad either:
2. To stay in an old-city hostel (finding out about the hidden cameras too late), waking up with calls to prayer not long enough after going to bed, to belly dance in said hostel and make friends you’ll keep in touch with for years: