Country Kids from Coombe Mill

July 10, 2015 at 11:30 PMCoombeMill

Butterflies and Caterpillars 

 Making and Finding Minibeasts

Here on the farm I used to dread a wet Friday, activity hour in my kitchen felt a right squish and a squeeze!  However since Farmer Nick indulged my new farm fun time with its own purpose built marquee we can withstand a summer downpour and carry on regardless.  Just as well as after a glorious week the skies looked threatening on the last afternoon as we headed out to pull sticky weed from around the farm for our first activity.  Farmer Nick thought we were doing a spot of weeding for him but I dashed his hopes saying that our collecting wasn't going to relieve him of his afternoon chores.

 

Picking some Sticky Weed

Back in the tent we were congratulating ourselves for beating the rain which then proceeded to lash down on the canvas above. It didn't matter to us; we were already busy making caterpillars by wrapping our freshly gathered sticky weed around my collection of empty toilet rolls. It was harder than it sounds as the weed kept sticking to fingers and clothes just as the name suggests. Eventually we all managed to thread our weed covered rolls onto string to create perfect caterpillars which wiggled and squirmed along the floor when pulled.

 

Making the Toilet Roll Caterpillars

 

We chatted about the magical process of a caterpillar turning into a butterfly before carefully cutting out our own butterfly shapes and print painting one side to another to make our own. These we taped to sticks which formed the body of the butterfly and gave the wings a perfect flap when waved around, just like butterflies flying in the wild.

 

Making the butterflies

The children loved these themed crafts; they were so simple and ideal for preschool ages. As the rain had stopped we used the last of our hour going on a real butterfly hunt.  We found a caterpillar and saw lots of meadow brown butterflies flying around in the long grass but they were so quick it was hard to point them out to the children or capture them on camera, we did a loop back through the Fairy garden to see the pretend ones on sticks that didn't fly away!

In search of the minibeasts

 

If you'd like to see a detailed post on how we made these and other crafts please follow my #Trash 2 Treasure monthly linky for all upcycling, I'd love you to add your own posts too. I am already taken with these peg butterflies from Let Kids be Kids for a future craft session.

 

 

Joining in with Country Kids   

Country Kids is all about the benefits to children of spending time outdoors. A little exercise and time away from screens and sofas is good for them and good for us adults too. I welcome all outdoor fun from days out to crafts and learning so grab your sun hat or rain coat and see what's out and about near you.  When sharing on the linky please grab the country Kids badge or link back here and remember to check out the other posts too, there are always some great ideas to inspire your next adventure.

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:

Chelsea Mamma visited one of my favourite places, the Portsmouth Royal dockyards for a great educational day out.

A perfect 30th weekend from Life at Cooks Cabin had be quite taken by her husband's planning.

We weren't the only one studying butterflies this week, When the Dust Settles enjoyed a wonderful nature day out.

There were plenty of butterflies in the gorgeous lavender meadows as spotted by 3 Kids and a Gluestick.

The Melton House enjoyed a boat trip with the bonus of seeing and filming a pod of 7 to 10 dolphins 

Another awesome adventure for One tiny Leap this time in Utah

Closer to home Our Little Escapades took little E for her first seaside paddle

 

 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

 

   

   

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

May 15, 2015 at 11:40 PMCoombeMill

Wildflower Learning and Crafts

Activity hour changes by the week, every time I think I am going to be easy on myself and repeat an activity I think of something new I want to try! With all the spring flowers bursting forth on the farm I wanted to see if I could create a craft around these. The children staying ranged in age from 2 to 5 so I knew it had to be something engaging, easy to complete and colourful. It didn't take me long to have a plan forming that was easily going to use up our hour.

Wildflower Hunt and Bookmark Craft

As everyone gathered around the craft tent I explained what we had planned for the afternoon. First we were going to design our collecting baskets from a sheet of coloured paper, and then we would be off on a wildlife trail to fill them with wildflowers before returning for more crafting fun with our colourful collection.

Starting a session with some colouring suited all ages as the older children drew recognisable spring flowers and butterflies while the younger's children delighted in messy patterns. When everyone was ready we turned our artwork into collecting baskets and were ready for a farm wildflower hunt.

Making the Collecting Baskets

To give us some guidance on things to collect we had printed and laminated our farm wildflower hunt from the Coombe Mill education pages, as created for us with twinkl. Everyone took a sheet and a felt tip pen to tick of each flower they found and add it to their collecting baskets.

Ticking off the Flowers

This took longer than I had bargained on as the children were determined to find every flower scouring the farm hedgerows, river bank and fairy garden. They beamed with delight as they found what they were searching for.

Flower Hunting

Back at the tent we set to work on our bookmarks. I had taken a photo of the children on the farm before hand and each used this photo to personalise their bookmark, a tip I picked up from a post last year from Susan K Mann.  From here the children arranged their favourite flowers and embellished the design with felt tip. We used sellotape to hold them in place and give strength to the bookmarks. When they finished one side we turned them over and repeated the process by which time they were surprisingly sturdy.  For a finishing touch we punched a hole at the bottom and added some floristry ribbon tassels. 

Making the Bookmarks

Guy was blowing the whistle to call the children for the train at 5pm while I taped the last few bookmarks.  I was delighted with the attention to detail and concentration of all the children during this task and everyone had a bespoke book mark to take home as a keepsake for their night time stories.  

Finished Bookmarks

If you are here with us on the farm I run activity hour every Friday when there are 5 or more children staying. Children learn from each other and enjoy an hour in the fresh air cementing friendships and finishing their holiday on a memorable note. You can find other craft ideas and tutorials on past activities under my Farm Crafts section here on the blog.

 

Joining in with Country Kids

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:

A steam train and animals made a wonderful birthday treat for Sophie Is 

The Room on a Broom adventure trail made this country walk exciting for We're going on an adventure

Moors Country Park is great for an adventure especially if you go with friends as Charlie Moos and Chelsea Mamma did 

Popping over from France Mad house family Reviews had a blast at Chessington World of Adventures

More adventure with bubbles at the Abbey for Becoming a Stay at Home Mum

Let kids be kids made their own bubble machines, a lovely simple to do activity for the garden or park

The Joy of five enjoyed a day of mini beast studies which had the children captivated. 

 

 

 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

 

   

   

No-Sew Bunting

March 1, 2015 at 3:50 PMCoombeMill

Coombe Mill Activity Hour

At Coombe Mill we run a fun based activity hour at 4 pm on a Friday afternoon as a fun way to round off a holiday here on the farm. We usually do something crafty with the kids, often with an educational bias to help with fine or gross motor skills or encourage imaginative play. As believers in time away from screens and sofas as promoted through the Country Kids linky, our activities involve outdoor space and nature wherever possible. The results are used to decorate areas of the farm or for the children to take home with them as keepsakes.

Coombe Mill ‘How to’ Series

I have been asked how to make the crafts seen on my Country Kids posts that have shadowed the fun from activity hour, so I have created a Farm Crafts category on the blog with a series of "How to Make" tutorials for some of the crafts that we have covered so far. 

This post covers really simple bunting that children of any age can help make and design. My sewing is woeful and so this simple quick fix alternative works just fine for me, gives instant results for our farm craft sessions and lasts surprisingly well.

How to Make badge from Coombe Mill

 

Make your own designer bunting

Make your own No-Sew Bunting

What you will need:-

  • And old sheet or piece of material
  • Scissors
  • String
  • Stapler
  • Felt tip pens
  • Triangle pattern

 

No-Sew Bunting, What you'll need

Method:-

  1. Trace the triangle pattern out on your material until you have however many you want to work with.

  2. Carefully, cut around the triangles on your material (we tried both double sided triangles and single triangles and found that the singular ones worked best as the double sided ones didn't line up so well).

  3. Decorate your bunting, each child at here at activity hour has the chance to decorate at least one of their own and usually the parents can't resist joining in with one too.

  4. Fold the top of the triangle over a long piece of baler twine and staple it so that it doesn't fall off (we found that it worked best with one staple each side of the triangle to hold it over the baler twine and one in the middle that went through the baler twine to stop it from sliding up and down).

  5. Find somewhere that you want to hang it up.

No-Sew Bunting method

 

A few fun additions that you might want to try:-

  • You could use fabric pens rather than felt tips and the drawings might hold better.

  • Would be a great idea for a birthday or christening to have a commemoration from everyone there.

  • Try different shaped bunting such as squares and bubbles.

  • Try using wax crayons and making leaf print rubbings on the bunting

No-Sew Bunting Fun

We have been hanging ours up in the fairy garden. As the weather does its thing and the rain falls it leaves a lovely tie dye effect. The photo below is after a week of hanging through all weathers last summer. I love the way the colours have run.  Eventually the colour from felt tip pens will fade completely. After about 6 weeks you can take them down and redecorate them in a whole new design, ours have on average 3 uses before they are thrown away, that's a whole lot of value and fun from an old sheet!

 

No-Sew Bunting after it rained

If you've enjoyed this post, why not follow our How to Make Pinterest board with all the Coombe Mill craft tutorials.  

Follow the Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays board "How to Make" Craft Tutorials on Pinterest.

 

Did you know the Coombe Mill website also has a full program of educational resources aimed at children from early years through to key stage 2? These resources are perfect for supporting the natural learning on holiday here. 

 

Trash 2 Treasure

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

January 2, 2015 at 10:50 PMCoombeMill

 

Fun on the Farm over the New Year Holidays

It has been another busy week for us here on the farm with all the cottages and lodges full of guests for New Year. Thankfully we have been blessed with amazing clear days and frosty nights which have been perfect for the morning feed fun and afternoon train rides.

 

A frosty feed Run to care for the animals

 

The middle of the day has been the warmest and most of our guests have taken the opportunity to leave Coombe Mill and explore the local beaches. However Monday was our activity hour and several came back early to join us. The activity this week was led by a little fun play the day before when Theo, Guy and Jed, despairing of us ever seeing any snow, decided to go about creating their own snow man and made this:

 

 Coombe Mill Kids no snow snowman

 

I asked them how they did it and copied the idea with our guests. We substituted their flower pot for plastic jars and made the head just as they had done from compost balls. The snow is from a snow spray can and the arms and nose made the traditional way with sticks and a piece of carrot. Everyone had lots of fun with the spray can and our non snow snowmen looked very realistic.

 

Snow Free Snowmen

 

As it was bitterly cold we popped indoors next to make our party blowers. They had everything but the whistle so we all chose a noise to make when blowing them.

 

Whistle blower crafts

 

Warmed up we set off onto the farm led by Felix to light a huge bonfire from all the Christmas wrapping paper from last week's guests. Nothing pleased the children more than to grab a stick and poke at the fire, the heat certainly kept us all warm!

 

Bonfire fun & Warmth with the old Christmas wrapping paper

 

I managed to find some real party poppers with the annoying whistles and gave everyone one to blow on the train ride. The kids of course loved whistling through the train, I'm not sure the parents were so keen on the new acquisition going back to their properties but we were all set up in party spirit ready for our New Year's Eve Celebrations which I'll be sharing on next week's Country Kids.

 

Train Ride with Party Blowers

 

The train rides, feed run and activity hour happen all year at Coombe Mill, if you fancy being part of the fun of the farm please take a look at our price and availability as we are booking up fast for 2015 including Christmas and New Year.

 

 

Joining in with Country Kids

Whether you have seen snow to play in, frosty mornings to enjoy a walk or just let off some steam at the local park I'd love you to come and share here on the linky. Every week there are some wonderful posts filled with fun days out, crafts or nature discoveries all in the great outdoors. Please do visit the other posts linked up, it might just inspire your next week's activity and remember a little fresh air and time out from screens, sofas and central heating is good for us all. The badge is here is you would like to use it, it helps everyone find the posts within the community.

I always comment on every post that links up with me but doing this has led to some commenting systems seeing me as spam. If you don't see a comment from me please check your spam, I am probably lurking there!  

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

Country Kids will continue to run throughout the festive period so please stay with me and share your outdoor festive adventures!

 

A few of my favourites from last week:

Chelsea Mamma and Chocolate is not the only fruit came to spend christmas with us here on the farm. I've had a lovely time reliving the fun we all had thought their posts, please do take a look.

Just to show I'm not biased Lattes and Little Ones jetted off to sunnier climates and this looks magical too.

Brinabird and son was lucky enough to see snow and her son looks delighted to be playing in it, I hope some comes to cornwall this year too.

Fresh air and exploring outdoors over the Winter Holidays can be perfect for blowing away the cobwebs, these two posts will make you want to grab your coats and run outside Our footprints on the world and Mummy Constant 

 

 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

   

   

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

July 11, 2014 at 11:30 PMCoombeMill

Pirates and Fairies

Quick DIY Pirate & Fairy Crafts

 

We had one of the great British downpours just before our Coombe Mill activity hour began. Everything was drenched even though it had actually stopped raining by the time everyone had assembled by our reception. Given the soggy state of my garden bench and table we headed in to the kitchen leaving the doors open as it was still muggy and warm. Thankfully my kitchen table is big and there was plenty of space for everyone. Here we delved into the land of make believe creating simple pirate swords cut from card and covered in silver foil,  eye patches from black card and string and for the younger girls they chose to raid the dressing up box for fairy costumes and make simple wands from sticks and cardboard stars covered in silver foil. Kym had cut the templates out in advance to make it easier so the children just had the fun task of coating and assembling their play props.

 

Fairy wands and Pirate eyepatches

 

By the time they finished the sun was out and the ground drying up enough for us to head back outside. We handed out tick sheets and pens in preparation for a little hunting challenge for our pirates and fairies.

 

Tick Sheet

 

Excitedly we trooped off to the fairy garden to see if we could find the lovely decorated stones from Lisa Bailey Brown marked on their sheet of paper.

 

Off to the Fairy Garden

 

Each animal on the stone had the corresponding hoof / paw / foot print associated with it. The children took the task very seriously shouting in delight whenever they spotted an animal print stone from their list, I think the parents quite enjoyed joining in too. Kym had rearranged the stones in advance so no one knew where to look and as I had just added some new items into the gardens that day there was plenty to discover along the way.

 

Finding the stones

 

Once everyone had found the stones we headed over the road to our pirate play ship to hang out some Cornish Flags in preparation for a spot of play before Guy arrived to run the afternoon train.

 

Hanging out the flags

It was lovely to watch the children continue in their make believe world clutching their swords and still wearing eye patches and fairy dresses as they sailed down the slides and steered the ship.

 

Play Time Fun

 

Another successful activity hour making the most of what we have here at Coombe Mill.

 

Joining in with Country Kids    

Country Kids is all about enjoying time spent outdoors. It can be going on an adventure, a day out, holiday, craft activity, playing in the garden or anything else that inspires you. There are so many health benefits from a little fresh air and time out of our busy daily lives with our children. I hope you will share your fun here on the linky. Please grab the badge or link back here and remember to check out some of the other posts too. There are always some great ideas to inspire your next outdoor adventure. 

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

Pin on the Pinterest Board

Join the Google Plus community page  for Country Kids

Share your posts on  Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids 

 

A few of my favourite posts from last week

Chocolate is not the only fruit explores Cornwall from a holiday base here at Coombe Mill

Joys of the journey discover an exciting national forest far away while Over there to here enjoy the woods of England 

Over 40 and Mum to One takes some amazing photos on a most successful nature walk

RollerCoaster Mum treads in the footsteps of Winnie the Pooh

Lets Talk Mommy tells of no place like home and makes me want to visit too. 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Coombe Mill

"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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Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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WOW’s toy filled Countdown Calendars have been created for children who are looking forward to a special forthcoming day or event in their young lives. Each comes with 10 toys so the fun never ends

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