Hey there July 5th! It’s time for PART ONE of our summer vacation recap!
I mean…it’s the day after Independence Day. Anyone else besides me finding it hard to adult today? We were up waaaaaaaay too late last night. Sigh.
Okay, enough about me being tired…today’s the first recap of our fantastic trip to Scotland and Ireland!
I always like to break these trips down into numbers for you before we start.
Here we go:
5,896 trips to public restrooms (I mean…could Ashby and Madeley ever just go at the same time?!?!?!)
At least 50 rounds of cards with my big three.
1 road trip driving on the opposite side of the road. And car.
Like 1 billion frites consumed (French fries served at every meal is really the only way to eat, no?)
2 outings to learn how whiskey is made…both Scotch Whiskey and Irish Whiskey
We slept in 1 castle.
At least 20 cappuccinos consumed. They taste better in Europe.
1 haunted ghost tour.
And ALL THE TARTAN. I mean ALL OF IT.
Now, did we see everything? No. Did we miss stuff? Of course. Do we need to go back? ABSOLUTELY! We hit as much as we could considering we had four kiddos in tow who from time to time like to just chill out and not run from one thing to the next, so we tried to do as much as we could without running them into the ground. We ate some AMAZING food, and I tried to take note of each place to share with you…but you know, life happens and I didn’t always jot down these restaurants’ names, but if I do remember (or wrote it down), I’ll add it in the post too.
So, remember a few weeks ago when I said we plan our trips out 2 years in advance? Well, we had originally planned on going to Hawaii this summer, but after Kensington and Smith watched a few episodes of Travel with Kids on Amazon Prime, they asked if we could change it to Scotland and Ireland instead. Um, yes. I love the beach and all, but this is way more mine and Andrew’s speed, so we changed gears and got ready to tackle these two new countries. None of us had ever been to Scotland or Ireland, so it was the perfect trip for the Shull six. Bonus…the week before we left, I found out I was 70% Irish, so it was totally meant to be 🙂 .
Sit back and relax…there are just so many pictures of all the fun!
Airport bound!! We left on a Tuesday morning and flew from Dallas to NYC and then connected on a flight from NYC to Edinburgh, Scotland. The Lord really blessed us because our flight out of Dallas was really delayed, but when we landed, our connecting flight was at the VERY next gate! They were already halfway through boarding, but we were able to just walk right over and get on (instead of changing terminals and missing our flight!).
We ate brunch at DFW before boarding the flight. These three sisters were so excited!
Annnnnnnnnd fast forward mannnnnny hours later (THE NEXT DAY), we landed in Scotland around 7:00 AM, went through customs, collected our luggage, met our car service and went to the apartment we had for the next few nights. We all freshened up a bit and then took this selfie as we stepped out into the day to explore Edinburgh. The weather was so nice (low 50s), we were so tired (I mean…legit tired), but we had the day ahead of us and rule #1 for surviving jet lag is NO NAPPING! We conquered the day instead 🙂 . (Psssst: I posted once about our “inflight routine” and how we all sleep on the plane. To read that, click HERE.)
When there is a gorgeous castle as the backdrop to EVERYTHING you know you’re in Edinburgh, Scotland.
We stopped to eat brunch and sat outside in a cute little cafe with a view of Edinburgh Castle. Side note: I’ve had this jacket for YEARS, and it’s so popular that J. Crew still carries it. You will see me wearing it every day for like a week of this vacation. It is MY FAVORITE!!
Photobomber. And when Andrew has his map out…you know we’re in serious vacation mode.
These girls were such TROOPERS!!
Who has time to look at the camera and smile when there’s a castle back there?!?!
I mean…when you’re three, you can only fight the jet lag so long.
We walked all over Edinburgh. It was such a walkable city! We spent the day in the Old Town portion of Edinburgh and there was so much to see and do!
Sweet Madeley! The big kids were already having the BEST time!
We strolled, explored and ate ice cream along the way.
Ashby thinks ice cream helps you fight jet lag 🙂 .
We loved watching this guy perform in the street. He was playing with fire and so the girls cuddled for security 😉 .
We played at the park a little and then, we stopped to pose with the lion. See my boy?
We had heard wonderful things about Monteith’s for dinner, so we had reservations there that night. Everything was delicious! I wish I had taken pics of the inside. It was downstairs in a cozy little den-like restaurant with stone walls. We had calamari for an appetizer and then I had steak frites for dinner. It was so good! We ate an early dinner and then went back showered and went to sleep. We all slept straight through the night and then were ready to go the next day…
Ah! Up and at breakfast sitting by two of my girls. We typically ate a cafe-like breakfast, dinner at a restaurant and then lunch was more pub-style. Psssst: my pullover is HERE.
My view across the table 🙂 .
After breakfast, we had 10:00 AM tickets for a walking tour of Edinburgh Castle. We started here and then the tour took us up to the castle.
Friends, THESE are those TOMS I told you about months ago. The COMFIEST SHOES I’VE EVER WORN. I wore them on this day of the trip…AND EVERY.SINGLE.DAY.AFTER. I brought my pink slip ons and my Go Walks…but after I wore these babies all day, I never looked back. They come in three colors, but my heart belongs to “shade suede”. And my cute jeans are HERE 🙂 .
Here we are…still on the walking tour…learning so much about Edinburgh Castle!
Love this nugget!
Apparently, every August, there is a big festival in front of the castle, so they were busy building these grandstands around the entrance.
Cannons with a view.
I’m so glad it wasn’t windy up at the top of the castle.
Madeley is all “what’s up with your hair?”. Bahahahaha!
Inside the castle made us happy too! After our visit to the castle, we stopped by and visited the National War Museum…but I forgot to take pics of that. It was a really full morning, and we loved it all!
Ice cream makes us happy.
I love traveling with this guy. We counted…30 countries together (and then a handful a part). He’s my favorite person to explore the world with.
We had a pub lunch… #givemealltheshepherdspiefishandchipsbangersandmash …and then visited the National Museum of Scotland.
My thoughts exactly Smith.
She bought a puppy dog purse along the way…and loved showing it off. Doesn’t every girl need a Scottie dog purse? This museum had so many great things for us to see and do. It was VERY interactive with loads of things the kids could play with. Like…
…try and pull themselves up using just their arms 🙂 . It was a fun stop!
Rumor is…if you rub its nose, it brings you good luck.
Ashby loved Edinburgh 🙂
We stopped for an afternoon cappuccino and macaroons and sat at the cutest little outdoor cafe.
I love these girls so much!
Living our best life in Scotland! We were having such a good day!
We walked from the old town section of Edinburgh to this massive park right in the middle of the city. The kids wanted time to run crazy…so, we let them.
Madeley Moo decided to nap instead.
It was such a gorgeous day to watch the kids play!
After we played at the park, we grabbed a quick dinner before…
…our reservation to go through the underground ghost tour!!! Ha! Ashby! She said she was trying to look scared…trust me, she was not. This was one of our favorite things to do in Edinburgh! It was a big walking tour (probably 20-ish people) and she walked us around telling and showing us so many interesting things about the city.
Kensington’s face! The tour wasn’t fabricated information, it was real info about people who used to live in the city. It was so fascinating!
Madeley was scared.
The tour lasted about an hour and a half…but it didn’t feel long at all.
Madeley was downright frightened.
The last pic of the day I took was here in this old cemetery where they estimate over 300,000 people are buried.
After the tour, we walked back and went to bed. It was a full and fun day to see this beautiful city! Side note, just like when we visited Norway and Alaska…the sun really didn’t set. It was very light and bright all night long 🙂 .
That wraps up PART ONE! Thanks for scrolling through all the pics with me. I’ll see you tomorrow, friends! xo