Friday, 27 February 2015

Dens and woodland fun at Lyme park

Where has this week gone? Seriously, it has just flown. I was hoping to have written up all of our half term antics by now, but seriously its just flown.

Last week we went to Lyme park with Grandma M and Grandad M. We made the most of Grandma not having any plans, and the dry sunny weather. I have never been to Lyme park before, but now we are national trust members, there is no stopping us with the exploring, except a birthday party. J had a party at lunchtime, so we were stuck with the afternoon. This meant we only had a few hours, rather then a full day.

We were hoping to walk through the deer enclosure, but it was closed so the ground could recover. We still saw the deer, and S kept calling them Rudolph....

As we couldn't go through to the deer, we decided to take the next gate to get away from the cars. This took us up a hill, to some trees... perfect fro playing hide and seek. J ran off first to hide, and S followed suit after a little whine. Can you see J hiding?

Grandad was happy watching the birds, whilst Grandma and I found the girls.

When it was my time to hide, I hid inside this den...  the girls then wanted to make it their home. There was so many dens around, it was great. J really wanted to build her own from scratch, but due to time constraints, we have promised (Pinkie Promise, of course!) that we will be back when its a bit warmer, with a picnic, and Daddy to help.

 In the woods, I saw a gorgeous shot, that the photographer in me, just had to capture, as it was framed by the tree's. So here is my landscape shot of the day... Lyme Park house, from the woods.

Grandma, and Grandad had then led the girls towards the park, so I managed to catch this great shot of them all walking in the woods.

They had great fun in the park, but you could tell it was half term. I would love to come back and explore it with the girls more again, as despite the crowds, they still had great fun, and was able to get on everything.
On the way back to the car, Grandma spotted a branch about 5ft up, and suggested J sat on it for a photo. Going back a year, I never thought J would do it. She has grown so much more confident in the great outdoors, it is lovely to see.

In the picture, you cant tell its that high up off the ground, so I persuaded S to stand underneath... I don't think she would have sat still on it long enough for a photo...
I think we started a trend, as after us another family started posing for a very similar shot.
It was a lovely sunny, but cold afternoon, spent outdoors enjoying all the outside world has to offer.
We shall definitely be back for a full day of fun very soon...
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall
Binky Linky

Friday, 20 February 2015

Half term fun with Squirrels

This half term took us back to Heaton Park, in North Manchester. We first visited two years ago, for a geocaching day out, and whilst there, an old man, gave the girls a few monkey nuts. This memory has always stuck, as I have never found squirrels anywhere else as friendly.
So, when I saw Monkey Nuts very cheap in Aldi, I knew it would be on the agenda for this half term week, especially as we had not been back since. We planned to meet with a friend and her boys, for some great outdoor fun.
Our first port of call was to find the squirrels, so we headed to the woods. The boys were much more adventurous then my girlies, but J was keen to learn... O here is pretending to be a monkey, and J later in the day copied the same pose.... at first the squirrels were no where to be seen, so we just let them continue exploring the woods.
After a few throws of the nuts into empty spaces, the squirrels came out of hiding. All the children went armed with nuts, and went chasing them.... no matter how many times we mentioned, if you run at them, they will run, they still continued the chase.
We were stood still, and a few came up to us, and the bag of nuts.... the children were amazed that he took the nut direct from my hand, so they then listened about staying still and quiet - ish....
They came and sat on a log nearby, and within a minute or two, they were all feeding them. JW was a little worried of being bitten, so dropped the nuts as it came close, but all the children were happy, at this rare half term activity.
Even the boys mum wanted in on the feeding action, but with O next to her, she didn't have a chance, as all the squirrels seemed to of preferred him.
It easily passed an hour, and none of the children were bored before we ran out of the two bags of nuts. Well worth the £1.50 in total. We would recommend it too.
We then went off to explore the rest of the park. There were lots of paths, and as we weren't rushed for time, we let the children decide on the route we would take, with the majority vote. The path they chose, took us along some very tame horses, which J was very happy about.

After a little walk, we came across a small park with picnic benches.... perfect timing for a picnic lunch stop. When they finished eating they were allowed to play. J chose the wooden donkey, whilst S preferred a tiny table and chairs made out of a tree...

They had a fairground setting up on the field, and all the children wanted to go and explore. Thankfully for mummy's purse, the fair wasn't open.
The next port of call was the boating lake, with lots of hungry geese. Thankfully we remembered the bread....

Conveniently placed by the lake was the ice cream van. The temperature was a little warmer then it had been the past few weeks, so yes, of course we couldn't just pass by. I was good, and didnt have my own, the calories from the licks to stop the drips from the girlies don't count, do they?

S loved making a mess, purposely putting it on her nose, and giggling.

We were then heading back to the car park, ready for J's appointment at the hospital for an eye test. (Turns out she DOES need glasses now), but before we did, we stopped by the animal farm. I have never seen goats so friendly. They were actually after strokes rather then food. And of course a quick stop by the park.

This was my favourite day of the half term week so far. There is something about lots of smiling kids, giggling and enjoying all nature has to offer.
Have you ever fed a squirrel out of your hand??
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall
Binky Linky

The Tiger that came to tea, comes to Liverpool...

This week, we were invited to Liverpool to the Epstein theatre to meet the Tiger that came to tea. We have had the book since J was 1, as it came with a collection we got her for her first birthday. And although its not one of the girls favourite, it is well liked and known here. As it was half term, we decided to make an adventure of it, and went on the train. This meant it was a full day out for us. The girls loved it.
With being stuck with train times, we decided to arrive early rather then late, so we had a bit of time to pass, before it was time. J is really interested in the "city" at the moment, and all the noises that come with it, as we were walking, we heard a busker. We decided as he was pretty good, that we would sit and listen, and let S dance some of her energy off. The girls from muumy3+1dog and both my girlies enjoyed his singing.

It was soon time to go inside, and see what fun was ahead. The girls managed to be one of the first to get their face painted, and of course it was TIGER themed. With both girls full of cold, and noses like taps, I asked for it not to be done around the nose, and instead the girls had some fancy artwork in tiger colours instead.

Just as J was done, the Tiger came out to say hello, S wasn't having any of it, as she finally decided she was tired, and I'm not surprised. She was up no less then 14 times during the night. I have no idea why, but I almost cancelled the trip, but that wouldn't have been fair on J. As you can see, she was having a blast, and had no problems in saying hello to the Tiger.

There was time for some colouring, which both girls were happy doing, and it was great just sat their with the sun streaming through the windows.

We were then called through to the theatre where the show will be held. I have never been to the Epstein theatre before, and it was lovely to see. It wasn't massive, where you would be struggling to see from the back. And had a warm feeling about it.

The children were invited onto the stage, where the story was read to them. The tiger joined in a few actions too.

After story time, it was time for the tea party....

S's plate was much more colourful then J's... but hey, its a party, and they got to choose what they wanted.

The Tiger came around and in true Tiger style from the book, was eyeing up the girls lunch.

The children were also given Tiger themed balloons, which I just couldn't resist, snapping this cute photo of S.

The tea party was soon over, but couldn't be finished without a roaring photo.... here are the girlies, with Mummy3+1dog girls doing their ROAR...

Thank you, Epstein theatre, we are very much looking forward to coming to watch the show in June.
The show runs for 55minutes, and is suitable for children aged 3 and over. They will be visiting Epstein between Tuesday 9th and Sunday 14th June, and tickets can be brought here.
Have your children read this "modern classic" book? What did they think? Will you be coming to watch?

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Spring has sprung at National Forest Adventure Farm

On Sunday, we were invited back to the National Forest Adventure Farm. We had so much fun when we went in October, we jumped at the chance on returning.

They have different things on for the February half term, which has started now. The girls were super excited, and Daddy was gutted he had to work. We arrived at lunch time with a picnic packed, just as the pantomime started. We missed the first 5 minutes, but managed to grab carpet space right at the front... perfect for our sarnie eating, whilst watching the show.

The pantomime lasted around 45 minutes, and had a cast of 4, with costume changes to change characters, they involved the audience, and came extremely close.... the girls loved it... not sure everyone else did, as half way through, younger children started to leave.
After the show, which shows twice a day, we went to feed the ducks the crusts from the sarnies, and then it seemed perfect timing for the tractor ride.... there is something about tractors and children... they just love it... especially when you have to shout scarecrows as you find them...
After the tractor ride, I checked out the timings for the lamb feeding, and as we had 30 minutes to wait, we decided to head for the craft table, where the girls got to decorate their own spring themed masks... 

It was then time to head to the animal barn. S remembered the guinne pigs, and was upset that she missed the petting times, but thankfully the lambs were getting ready for the feed, right on time. The crowds grew, and the girls only got a few seconds feeding, as there were a lot of children, and not that many lambs yet, as they are still expecting more over the next few days and weeks....
It was lovely to see S do it this year, as previously she has been too young. The lamb here was just 5 days old. We then went to explore the other baby animals. I fell in love with a beautiful calf, who had the most stunning eye lashes... the calf was more interested in J's pompoms on her hat though, which she found very funny.
There were also lots of piglets, as well as the lambs.
After seeing all the animals, it was time for more fun... they got a  go in the barrel tractor ride...
Pedal tractors, and try to race each other...
Bouncy castle time, which is new since we last visited in  October half term...
Attempt to milk a plastic cow...
And build sandcastles of course....
They had crazy golf on site too, but by this point we wanted to warm up so headed inside to the large play barn with drop slides, big slides, ball pits, and basically great fun in the warm. I think the girls could have stayed all day in that part alone. How did we miss this in October??
We will certainly be back again.
Will you be trying out the Half term activities with National Forest Adventure Farm??
 *We were given complimentary tickets in return for an honest review. All words, thoughts and pictures are my own.