Silent Sunday / Project 52

February 7, 2015 at 9:50 PMCoombeMill

We Had Snow


 There is very limited mobile signal at Coombe Mill but we do have an old fashioned working pay phone, yes it takes real coins!  We also have excellent free wi fi here across the cottages and lodges. This was our only sprinkling of snow for winter 2014 - 2015, it lasted about 5 minutes but did make a pretty winter picture. 

Posted in: Weekly Photo


Country Kids from Coombe Mill

February 6, 2015 at 11:50 PMCoombeMill

Catch of the Day

We have two lakes at Coombe Mill, a top lake stocked with young coarse fish where children often first try their hand at fishing or pond dipping and a lower lake with mature carp for the more serious fisherman.


Lakes at Coombe Mill Farm Holidays, Cornwall, UK


It us usually the Dad's who retreat for a quiet hour by the lake at dusk while Mum prepares tea or puts the children to bed. However last October a group of our regular guests enjoyed some family fishing time on the main lake and invited Guy to join them as he had teamed up playing with their children during the week.

Fishing at Half Term on the Coombe Mill Carp Lake

It wasn't long before Guy picked up the fishing bug spurred on by the odd triumphant catch. He had been shown how to carefully bring the fish to land with a landing net and how to remove the hook from inside its mouth. The whole process just makes me shudder, I don't even like gutting the trout they catch in the river after they are dead, to deal with a gasping live fish is beyond me and Farmer Nick is not much better. However Guy was quite un-phased by the whole process and delighted in a team photo whenever they caught a fish.


Caught a fish on holiday on the Coombe Mill Lake


I feared that once the friends left his love of fishing would go with them. I've been pleasantly delighted to watch his enthusiasm grow. It is quite common for him to pick up a rod and take himself off on a spare hour at the weekend or even after school when he just needs a little fresh air after a long school day cooped up. So many times he will come back and say "I caught a fish Mum" so when  some Spanish children wanted to learn to fish over the New Year holidays it was Guy who took them. They had a lovely time, if little patience for sitting there and they left Guy a lovely present and note when their holiday ended. I think Guy was happy just to have their company.


Letter to Guy for teaching our holiday guest to fish at Coombe Mill Farm


This week I decided to follow him out with my camera and just see if these fish he claims to catch alone were real or not. To make it harder he was trying his luck in the top lake. He was perfectly happy in the solitude of the farm; there was only the sound of the wildlife and the river as we are currently closed to visitors until February half term. 


Guy fishing after school on the Coombe Mill Lake


I caught up with him in the late afternoon light and to be honest there wasn't a sign of a fish in sight, no ripples nearby, only the ducks crossing the lake and Guy sat with his twinkl flask of tea and his latest book though how he doesn't feel the cold I really do not know.


Setting up by the Coombe Mill top lake on a quiet afternoon


Then out of nowhere just as I was checking the bottom lake for him when I heard him call me. Running back I could see him reeling in his line. I followed his instructions to grab the landing net for him and watched with pride as he manoeuvred the fish and dug deep into the back of its throat where the hook had inconveniently attached. It was so far back I thought we might lose the fish but my calm and collected son managed to release it by nudging it backwards into the throat so the carp by reflex could then spit it forward and out.


Guy landing & releasing a carp on the Coombe Mill Farm top lake


It was a fine catch and Guy was only too happy to have his photo taken before carefully returning it to the landing net to release gently back into the lake.  A flick of the tail and he was out of sight.


Catch of the day on the Coombe Mill Farm Holidays Lake


If you are coming to visit us this year, don't forget to ask Guy about learning to fish. We have rods free to hire for adults and children and the most beautiful scenery to enjoy.



Joining in with Country Kids

Country Kids is all about spending time away from screens and sofas, getting up, being active and enjoying some good old fashioned outdoor fun. Nature has so much to offer all year round and right now signs of spring are bursting forth. Whether you are spotting spring on an country walk, collecting nature to make crafts or enjoying a trip to the park or further afield please come and share with me here on the linky; all outdoor family fun welcome. Please grab the badge code or link back here and remember to check out some of the other lovely posts, there is always plenty of inspiration to be found in others.

Country Kids is around in these communities, I'd love you to join me:

Pin on the Pinterest Board Just ask for an invite to pin and include Country Kids on your pins for me to stop by on your boards too (no need for a hash tag in Pinterest)

Follow Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays's board Country Kids  from Coombe Mill on Pinterest.

Join the Google Plus community page  for Country Kids and add #CountryKids to your tag elsewhere for a +1 from me

Share your posts on  Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids for a like or a re-tweet

A few of my favourites from last week:

Over 40 and a mum to One turns visiting a lighthouse into a family adventure

So much to see and do down by the canal for The Love Bump.

Mum to a Monster found a perfect place for her toddler to explore and develop

Wetlands provide a great way to lean in nature as discovered by Plutonium Sox and There and Back Again.

Mummy of Two proves the beach in winter has all the fun of summer.

Kriss Macdonald shares watching the cows being milked with a serious message to us all.


Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall



Let your best photos flourish

February 2, 2015 at 8:14 AMCoombeMill


In today's world it is easier and easier for us to take professional looking photos. Phones are now as good a quality as cameras once were and DSLR's have automatic functions that even an amateur can work. Yet what are we doing with these photos? If you are like me they are stored away in the depths of Instagram and Facebook albums, worse still in a haphazard order on my pc and somewhere on Flickr or Tumblr. Back in the good old days we would socialise over a photo album, remembering 'that' holiday or baby's first year, or hang family portraits on the wall.

Things have come full circle and we can welcome back the good old days with a modern twist thanks to canvass prints from Wall Create.  Move over gilt edged portraits that look ridiculous in a modern house, now you can hang your favourite photos in a modern canvas format. Better still with the use of the internet those buried photos can be uploaded and ordered as prints in super quick time for no more than it used to cost to have your film developed.


From Photo to Canvas with Wall Create


Wall Create gave me the opportunity to sample the quality of their work. I simply sent a photo and back came a canvass in just days. The higher the resolution the better the results so it is worth finding one that will scale well. I chose a snap taken last year of my son holding a newborn lamb. It was after school in spring as the light was sinking down in our valley, he is still in his school uniform but keen to meet the first lambs of the season, it was a lovely natural photo showing his softer side which I've always meant to do more with. Now it will be a Birthday present for my husband and hang on our wall. It comes with two handy screws on the reverse to add your own string or picture wire and is super lightweight so no need to worry about the strength of your walls or the possibility of it falling and hurting someone.

If you fancy turning one of your favourite photos in to a wall canvas Wall Create have a range of prices and sizes to meet your needs.


Wall Create Prices for Canvass Prints


I love the look of the triple canvas and think they would work really well on a panoramic photo like this one of our local beach (taken on my iPhone).


 Seascape of Tregardock Beach, Cornwall


Wall Create are offering Coombe Mill followers a discount on their already competitive prices. To benefit from 15% off any of their canvas prints just add coombemill as the discount code.  

Discount code from Wall Create with Coombe Mill

You can also win your own canvas by entering the giveaway below. This is for a print of your choice from a photo you are storing on line. It will be printed at 40cm x 30cm, the same as the one I have above, so do ensure you have a photo scalable to these dimensions.  

Good luck to all taking part and I hope you will be as happy with your picture as I am.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Disclosure: I was given my choice of photo on canvas for the purpose of this review. However all opinions expressed here are my own.


SBS Event 2015

February 1, 2015 at 6:40 PMCoombeMill

I'm on my way home from the most amazing trip to Birmingham for the annual Small business Sunday meet up.


#SBS Winners Event 2015


As a little background I won my tweet out from dragons den Theo Paphitis back in 2011. This is THE community to which all small businesses aspire to belong. It is friendly and supporting on social media and backed by the most inspirational business man.


A Photo of Fiona Cambouropoulos with Theo Paphitis at #sbs Event 2012


This is the third event and I've been lucky to attend them all as I won early in the process and the events fall in our January close down time. Each year builds on the last but a common thread runs through them all and that is sharing what it takes to be successful in Business:

Essentially this boils down to a real belief and passion in what you do. Yet this alone isn't enough, it must be combined with a gritty determination, a self confidence to persist and a thorough understanding of your business money. The assumption here is of course that your business is a viable one in the first instance.

Perhaps not a revolutionary message but delivered as Theo does it reminds me what I love about having our own farm holiday business.

This year three successful business people joined Theo to tell their story of how they made their millions and take questions from a huge expectant audience. Each made me realise how much is possible for those prepared to run with an opportunity.


sbs question time panel

Reflecting back on this in the car as I travel home these are the gems that will stick with me back into my working day next week. 

  1. If you're not boring all your friends and family about your business you should be! I always worry about this one, perhaps I shouldn't. This was Theo's tip that resonated with me.

  2.  We are all masters of our own destiny, Theo is an incredibly motivational and supportive of our individual businesses, but it is us who must use that and create the success for ourselves.

  3.  Success rarely comes from your 1st business venture and it's ok to learn and change. Judith Naake didn't make St Tropez her first business; in fact she didn't acquire the brand until she was 47, my age, and made millions in the 13 years she owned it. How amazing is that? It does inspire me to keep progressing and developing what we do here at Coombe Mill and adapting in line with modern trends.

  4.  Out of disaster can come real compassion and business acumen - Rob Forkhan and his brother lost their parents in the horrific Indonesian tsunami, his story and business success in Gandys flip flops was born from this, moreover his business helps others who were orphaned just as he and his siblings were. I'd rather not experience the disaster but it is a real example of how positive thinking can generate success and that successful business people like Theo and Rob can be compassionate in helping others. Food for thought for me at Coombe Mill and the experience we have to offer children.

  5.  You don't have to be first to market to make a success, it's OK to copy someone else and do it better. The "lovely" Julien Callede from did just this and took online affordable furniture into a multimillion pound business. Tenacity and perseverance and marketing are all important here. Julien marketted online as his point of difference to start his road to success in furniture.


In answer to Theo's Tweet:


A tweet from Theo Paphitis about #sbs event 2015


The question time was the highlight of the event for me. However there was plenty more too.

Networking is a huge part of the day, on a social and business level. It was great to catch up with fellow business friends and meet new contacts too. The formal time set aside for this was much appreciated and of course it spilled over in to some evening fun.


Networking at the #sbs event 2015

The Cornish Contingency

#SBS the Cornish Winners

Day time to Night time fun with #SBS 2015

The website for SBS winners has had a makeover from Metal Frog Studios and I'm excited to update my profile in here and use it more proactively as a member. Joy from AP Bassets Solicitors who is still waiting to win herself says it makes her even more determined to win and enter this website community, I must make my membership count.


New #sbs website


I have a headache from typing in the car on my phone, but I really wanted to capture my renewed motivation for Coombe Mill while it all so fresh. I vow to keep making Coombe Mill Farm the best holiday experience for families of young children.

Finally thank you to Theo, for his support and desire to see others succeed and for to the speakers and the whole SBS organisational team for putting on such an inspirational meet up all fully funded. It is a pleasure to attend. Now to explore my lovely goodie take home bag!


Goodie bag from #SBS 2015


If you have a small business and would like to get involved, look out for this tweet on a Sunday and make your pitch, it could be the best tweet you ever send!

A tweet to Win on #SBS with Theo Paphitis


I am making this post a blog link up for others who attended to link up their posts from the day as I know many have business blogs too and I'd love to read your take out. Grab the code here to share the badge on your site and the link below.


sbs blog hop from coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays



Silent Sunday / Project 52 / My Sunday Photo

January 31, 2015 at 10:10 PMCoombeMill



BBQ & Pirate ship in morning fog


A chilly morning as the mist rolls off of Bodmin Moor and across the farm, making the BBQ Hut and Pirate Ship Play Area look magical.


Posted in: On the Farm | Weekly Photo


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"Tales from the farmers wife" shares the funny and interesting happenings on our lovely holiday farm with Farmer Nick and our 6 children. A behind the scenes look on balancing family, farming, the holiday business and cooking for all. 

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