It's rare that I look upon other parents with envy. I'm reasonably self-assured and confident with my decisions and choices. However, there's a breed of parents out there that have me eyes-wide in awe and wanting to bow down to their complete and utter coolness and quite frankly, jaw-dropping willingness to parent without the help of 6am cBeebies. They are the 'festival parents'.
You know the sort. Great bed head. Look fantastic wearing clothes that have recently be retrieved from a tent floor. Sporting friendship bracelets that look better on their forty-year old wrists than any teenager. And probably best friends with Norman Cook and Zoe Ball.
I so want to be a festival parent. It's kind of like my dream. But, and it's a really big but, I wasn't particularly great a doing festivals pre-kids so I think my chances of being a cool festival parent now that I have two boys are slim to none. I once spent a couple of hours in Delamere Forest watching Jamie Cullum play but I don't think that quite counts. Does it?
However, at the weekend, I found a festival that even I could be pretend to be semi-cool at (well, at least for four hours until my little one threw himself on the floor, distraught at not being in his cot on time for his afternoon nap). That festival was The Good Life Experience, a one day extravaganza right here in North Wales featuring foot-tapping music, deliciously fresh food, amazing cooking displays, crafts and free vintage fairground rides. It was amazing.
I loved the music, my husband loved the bar, my littlest loved the old-fashioned seesaw and my eldest couldn't get enough of the helter skelter and the sausages.
For four whole hours, accompanied by friends, family and my brother's dog, Milo, we wondered happily around the festival grounds and felt that maybe, just maybe, we could pull off the festival parent thing for a full day next year (if our littlest can bear to be away from his trusty cot for a little longer).
The whole event felt so welcoming with so many wonderful things to see and do. If you want to test the festival-waters with your little ones, I'd definitely recommend going along next year (provisional dates are 19/20 September, 2015). I'll be waiting to snap up tickets as soon as they go on sale. Just for the day though. I don't think we're quite ready for a night in a tent yet (I'm not sure that I'll ever be ready for a night in a tent). However, I am very close to investing in several multi-coloured friendship bracelets and am going to put some serious effort in to perfecting my bed head.
Now, does anyone have Zoe Ball's email address?