Thursday

Things To Do In London... with kids and teenagers

Hi everyone!! A couple of days ago, my mum took my siblings and I up to London for the day, and we had a really lovely time. London is a beautiful, busy city with plenty of things to do, but I had to do quite a bit of research and weeding through articles before I found fun things for us to do (normally my mum plans our day trips to London, but this time I did haha). However, in the end the activities we chose were really fun, and made for a great day trip. So in this blog post, I will be sharing with you what we do and other fun activities to do in London... with kids and teenagers.

Peggy Porschen Cake Shop - https://www.peggyporschen.com/

The first thing we did, was get the tube to Victoria before walking for a few minutes to get to Peggy Porschens, a beautiful cake shop. This is a great thing to stop and do for half an hour or so, and it's great for all the family.. because who doesn't love cake?! I had a brownie, and whilst it's all fairly pricey, it was delicious. And whilst little ones may not appreciate how pretty the shop is, if you have teenagers they'll be taking heaps of photos for Instagram!! Beware: This cake shop is fairly popular and 'tourist-y', so sometimes they'll be a small queue outside the shop, if you want to eat in. The waitress said it would be around half an hour, but we got a table within 5 minutes. Go the website here, for more details.

St James Park and Buckingham Palace

This is definitely not the most unique thing to do whilst in London (!!), but it's still fun and interesting, particularly for younger ones. Firstly, we went to have a little look at Buckingham Palace, and then went for a walk in the lovely St James Park. Also, Hamleys is fairly near Buckingham Palace, so you could get a taxi there (or even walk it if you wanted!).

Museum of London - https://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/museum-london

I have to admit, I'm not really one for museums haha, but I found the London Nights expedition (info about it on their website is here), and I thought it actually sounded like my cup of tea. Basically, the expedition is full of gorgeous photography of London at night, and whilst littler ones may not be that interested in that expedition (although there are other ones like Fatberg that children may find cool), I found it really inspiring and motivating.

Zip Now (London) - https://zip-now.co/

This isn't an activity my family and I actually tried out (although I definitely want to at some point), and I've seen mixed reviews on it, so maybe do your own research first, but my friend went to Zip Now in London and said it was really fun. Zip Now is basically London's longest zip line at 225 metres. Younger ones may be too scared for this, and I've heard there's quite a bit of queuing, but for teenagers this is an exhilarating and exciting activity many would love. Note: this is around £30pp so obviously a much pricier activity for all the family!

Va Piano for dinner - https://uk.vapiano.com/en/home/

After we'd had our great day out, my family and I where actually heading to Va Piano for dinner.* This is a delicious Italian restaurant which has three branches in London (as well as other branches in the UK and across Europe) and we've been there multiple times before (it's literally my favourite restaurant ever!!). My siblings and I all had the carbonara, and I would recommend it so much... it's honestly the best carbonara ever (and that's saying something, as I've tried a lot!!) The cool thing about Va Piano, is that you can actually go up and watch the chefs making your food, and chat to them as they prepare it (e.g. you can say 'ooh can I have a bit more cheese' or 'could I have chicken as well as bacon' etc etc) - meaning it's just how you like it!

*The meal was complimentary for my family, as a thank you for a previous mention, not to be featured in this post (I'm just including them because their food is amazing haha!!)... all opinions are completely my own.

So there you have it... lots of fun things you can do with kids and teenagers out in London. Have you been to London before? Do you have any other fun things to do in London that you'd add to this list - comment them down below as I'd love to hear them for any future trips. Thanks for reading everyone, and I'll be back soon with a new post <33
tags: London, day out in London, things to do with kids. Things to do with the kids when bored, London for teenagers, activities for all the family teen blogger, blog, family blog, teenagers


Friday

My Favourite MG Books

Hi everyone!! So quickly, before I get into today's post I just thought I'd say that I'm currently planning a Q+A post and I need a couple more questions, so could y'all comment some down below? You can comment as many as you want, and they can be about anything:) Also, just needed to rant about how Brooklyn 99 has been cancelled after just 5 seasons:((( B99 is the most perfect, funny, wholesome show with lots of much-needed minority representation and it doesn't deserve to be cancelled AGH!! Have you watched it? What are your thoughts? #RenewB99!! But anyway hahahah - so recently, I've reread a couple of old MG books back from when I was 11 or so, and it reminded me just how good some MG books are. Nowadays, I primarily read teen/YA fiction, but occasionally I want an easier read, so I lean towards a book aimed at 8-12 year olds. And so, I thought I'd compile a list of my favourite MG books and share them with y'all in today's blog post...

Time Travelling With A Hamster by Ross Welford

TTWAH was a re-read, but for some reason I enjoyed it so much more the second time round. It's not even like I didn't like it the first time - I really did, but the second time I realised that I love this book! It's funny, but also made me shed a couple of tears at points. The MC I really warmed to, and I loved he grandfather so much. Some points, I have to admit, are a little confusing, but that's only because the book touches on things like The Grandfather Paradox but nothing too majorly confusing for an 9-12 year old (which is who I'd recommend this for). I like that this book really isn't aimed at one gender either - TTWAH definitely appeals to boys and girls alike. Also, I know my little sister has also read a couple other books by Ross and she also really likes them so I might need to check out a couple of his others.
credits: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Time-Travelling-Hamster-Ross-Welford/dp/000815631X

Murder Most Unladylike (series) by Robin Stevens

I feel like I've talked about the Murder Most Unladylike stories so many times on this blog haha, and I can't help but mention them again (I couldn't do a post on my favourite MG books and not include these?!!). I love murder mysteries, but haven't found that there are that many good mysteries for kids (that I know of - if you have any recommendations, let me know). However Robin Stevens' books are an exception to that. There are now 6 books in this series and in my opinion they are all as good as each other, - I don't find them predictable, I love the characters and I think the writing style is perfect for kids and teenagers. Definitely recommend!!

Letters From The Lighthouse by Emma Carroll

I read this book after my sister recommended it to me on holiday and I had run out of books to read (THERE'S JUST NOT ENOUGH ROOM IN SUITCASES OK), but I have to admit I was slightly hesitant. It's just it didn't really sound like my kinda thing haha! But I read it anyway, and I'm so glad I did. I've done a full book review on this (which you can read here: http://www.whatlexieloves.com/2017/08/letters-from-lighthouse-by-emma-carroll.html) but I'll summarise the book quickly for those who don't know. LFTL is about Olive, whose older sister Sukie goes missing during an air raid (this book is set during the 1940s) and her journey to try and find where Sukie is. This is actually a very cleverly written plot, with lots of twists and turns. It's a book if you want an easy, but still really interesting, read.

Scarlet Ibis by Gill Lewis (and any other of her books!)

Again, I have already done a whole post on Gill Lewis - focussing on three of her fabulous books - which you can check out here, (by the way if you do go to check it out, I was much younger when I wrote it - that's why it's not the best post hahahah) but for those of you who haven't read that blog post, I thought I'd include one of her books in this roundup. Scarlet Ibis is a beautiful, touching book about Scarlet and Red - an inseparable sister-brother duo. Their mum is a very troubled woman - who often is drunk and too ill to care for them, so a lot of responsibility falls to Scarlet. But when a tragedy occurs, Scarlet and Red have to be separated and it's all about how they struggle to cope without each other. Whilst this touches on some mature themes, it's handled very very well, so I would still recommend it to 9-13 year olds. I would definitely recommend Scarlet Ibis if you haven't read it (or any other Gill Lewis books!).

Wonder by RJ Palacio

And finally, one of my favourite books... Wonder. If you've been following my blog right since the beginning, then you may know that my first ever blog post was a review of Wonder. http://www.whatlexieloves.com/2013/10/wonder-book-ive-read-over-50-times.html The title over the best was 'The Book I've Read Over 50 Times' and I genuinely have read it over 50 times, that's not even an exaggeration (and my copy of the book proves it; it's so battered and dog-eared *although I prefer the adjective 'well-loved'!!). I still read this book again today, and it never fails to impress me. Wonder is beautiful, heart-warming and such a wholesome book - I cannot explain how much everyone should read this!

So those are my Top 5 Favourite MG Books that I would definitely recommend. Whilst writing this, I thought of lots of other great MG books, so I could always do a Part 2 if you wanted (??). These books are mainly for 8-12 year olds, but every now and again teenagers need an easier, more light-hearted read, so I recommend this list for those times. I'll be back soon with another post (and as I said, it's a Q+A - which I know y'all love, so watch out for that!!)


Saturday

My Top 5 Favourite Teen Bloggers

Hey!! So lately, I've been discovering lots more amazing blogs (particularly through Instagram), which are written by teens. In the past, particularly when I was first starting What Lexie Loves up, I struggled to find other teens and kids with blogs, so for today's post I thought I would share with you a roundup some of my favourite lifestyle, fashion and review blogs written by teens. These are some of the top blogs by under 18 year olds, that I think all teens should follow. Do you know any other awesome Gen-Z bloggers that you would recommend? Let me know, as I'm always on the look out for cool, new child bloggers:) Anyway - let's just get into the post; here are my Top 5 Favourite Teen Bloggers...

Taiya Maddison | http://www.taiyamaddison.com/

Taiya Maddison is one of my all-time favourite teen bloggers, even though I only came across her blog a couple months ago. Her blog is so well-thought out; it has a super cute design, she publishes high-quality and interesting posts really often (I don't know how she does it!!) and her Instagram is ACTUAL GOALS! Taiya's blog is based around lifestyle and fashion, so she writes lots of posts like fashion tips, her early 2000s playlist which she is currently obsessed with (sidenote - SAME, I'm obsessed with my throwback playlist too at the moment, our playlists are literally identical!!) and fashion trends she can't wait to try.

how gorgeous is her feed?!! instagram.com/taiyamaddison
Hot Town Cool Girl | http://hottowncoolgirl.blogspot.co.uk/

Hot Town Cool Girl is this awesome blog by Nabila, a 13 year old from Texas. Nabila is just so lovely ahh and one of my best blogger friends<333 Hot Town Cool Girl is, similar to my blog, a mix of everything and anything, it doesn't really specialise in one niche, but branches out to lots - Nabila does reviews, writes a little poetry, shares all the cool things she's been up to, gives advice and so much more! If you're looking for a new blog to check out (or are parent wanting to give your children a blog to read), I would definitely recommend Hot Town Cool Girl!

Capturing Life On Camera | http://www.capturinglifeoncamera.com/

Natalie, who writes Capturing Life On Camera, is just such a #GIRLBOSS! Her blog and Instagram are literal goals (her design is so cute - minimalistic and aesthetic, and all her posts are well-written and so relevant and useful to me.) And, like Taiya, she posts so regularly, and with gorgeous photos, HOW DO THEY DO IT hahahah?!1!1? Also, Natalie is from NYC, which is just one of the coolest places to live (in my opinion) - I want to visit NY so badly!!


Absolutely Olivia | https://absolutelyolivia.com/

I love Olivia and her blog so much! Firstly, her style is just the coolest!! She's so bold and unique wth her fashion, in such a confident way - she inspires me to go out and rock quirky outfits that I wouldn't normally. Obviously I don't know her in real life, but she just seems like such a sweet and genuine gal! She's also so empowering, particularly when it comes to girl power - she recently did a small project about feminism, which I took part in, and you can check out here. I love her fashion and lifestyle blog so much too, her latest post is a 'How To Find Your (Girl) Squad' and it's got loads of useful friendship tips, which I recommend you checking out, if you're in a toxic friendship right now, or just want to make some new friends.

February Fairy | http://www.februaryfairy.com/

Ok first of all, I just wanted to say I love the name 'February Fairy'; I think it's so cute haha!! February Fairy, written by Ella Marie, is an advice and lifestyle blog "helping girls learn to live fully and embrace their inward beauty". If you're looking for a motivating lifestyle blog, written by a lovely person, then February Fairy is the place to go! Alsooo, Ella's a writer - she completed her goal of 40,000 words for Camp NaNo this month ON HER FIRST TRY (!!) - so she has some posts on writing, with tips and tricks, like this one.

So those were my Top 5 Under-18 bloggers that I recommend. Of course, if you're new to my blog - then I'm also a teenage lifestyle blogger haha, so stick around (haha I couldn't do a post on teen bloggers, and not mention me #shameless #selfpromo!!) If you liked this post, I know of loads of other amazing teenage bloggers so I could do a part 2?? Who are your favourite teens to read?

Xx
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