Take a closer look at the picture above. Do you see that blurry arm and a hint of sweater to the left of the boys? That’s an action shot of me, whizzing by like a pro at Westfield London Ice Rink!
Actually my first venture on ice skates was more of a waddling display — I haven’t walked like that since I was pregnant!
To be fair, the instructor did tell us to make like penguins, skating forwards with our toes turned out. Ezra decided to ignore this advice and moonwalk around the rink.
Luckily he had a penguin ‘assistant’ to hold him up, otherwise he would have spent even more time on his back end. At least he claimed falling on the ice didn’t hurt!
The Babes family hit the ice at the launch of Westfield London’s spectacular indoor ice rink last night.
We’d wrapped up warm but since it’s indoors and skating works up a sweat, we really didn’t need all those layers. Poor Ezra was soaked through by the end!
Ice skating was loads of fun even for a newbie like me.
I was quite impressed with myself that not only did I manage not to fall over (‘that’s because you weren’t trying hard enough’, an instructor joked later), but that I also made it around the rink once without gripping onto the edges. And there was plenty of giggling encouragement from spectators around the sides.
Even though he’s under the recommended age of 4, Jed was a little trooper on the ice, assisted by his dad (the only one of us who could actually skate) and the super helpful instructors. Westfield also offers special daytime sessions for under 4s with penguin and seal supports and two-blade skates.
Jed was much more comfortable after he switched from blades to two-blade skates. At one point, Babe Daddy took Jed then Ezra zipping around holding onto the backs of their penguins — you should have seen their little windswept faces!
Santa’s 4D Grotto
Earlier on, we’d been spirited away on a mini train by a gang of crazy elves to Santa’s 4D Grotto. Babe Daddy described this as entertaining but ‘surreal’ and those elves were definitely several tools short of a workshop!
The grotto experience begins with a funny intro from one of Santa’s helpers, followed by a 4D film about an elf trying to make mischief on Christmas Eve.
They’d snapped the kids’ photos just before we entered, and when you watch the film each child gets a lovely surprise seeing their face on a present being packed up for Santa’s sack. It’s such a sweet touch and really wowed the babes.
Santa himself was a good chuckle and quite believable. I think he even convinced Ezra who’s at that age where he’s wondering if the fly guy in the red suit actually exists. You know, for real real.
The boys were pleased to get ‘starter presents’ and after our Blades of Glory escapade we stuffed ourselves with Pizza Express in the food court.
A brilliant evening out and some very tired bubbas the morning after! But as you can see by Ezra’s grin, well worth every minute.
Ice Rink peak times 6-9pm (Mon-Thu), 10am-9pm (Fri & Sat) & 12-6pm (Sun), off peak 10am-5pm (Mon-Thu): online tickets start at adult £10.50/child £7.50 (peak); box office tickets from adult £11.65/child £8.65/family tickets £36 – online pre-booking advised to save time and costs. (Nov 22-Jan 6)
Santa’s Grotto is open 10am-8pm (Mon-Fri), 9am-8pm (Sat) & 12-6pm (Sun); tickets £3/family £10 (until Dec 24)
Ice Rink and Santa’s Grotto experience also available at Westfield Stratford