Turning Sticks into Fish

August 11, 2014 at 1:00 AMCoombeMill

Coombe Mill ‘How to make’ Series

How to Make Crafts for Children from Coombe Mill

Every Friday afternoon we run an activity craft hour on the farm for the children staying here with us on holiday. The fun from these sessions I often share on my Saturday Country Kids linky in-between our own family adventures, but as these sessions build I am creating a post focussing simply on instructions to make the ideas we use. You can find more crafts in the series under the Farm Crafts Category.

How to make fun stick fish

How to Make Fish from Sticks Craft for Children

What you will need:-

  • A pair of scissors
  • sticky tape or stapler
  • Ribbon
  • String
  • Two sticks of equal length with a curve to them
  • A pen

Things you need to make a fish from sticks


  1. Lay the sticks out into a fish shape
  2. Tie one end
  3. Adjust the shape back to a fish an tie the other end
  4. Staple, tie or tape the ribbon around the beginning of the fish
  5. Weave the ribbon up the body
  6. Secure the end so that it doesn't unravel.
  7. Draw on an eye
  8. Tie string to the centre of the top stick and hang your fish from a tree in the garden or in your bedroom.


How to Make a Stick Fish

A few fun additions to try out:-

  • Try using different colour wool instead of ribbon and weave both ways along the body
  • Use it as a dream catcher and leave messages woven into the ribbon
  • Make different sizes and create a shoal of fish
  • Turn the craft into a learning exercise by practicing counting the fish, ordering by size and identifying different ribbon colours.
  • Collect the sticks as part of a woodland walk, children love to create with the things they have found.
  • Go looking for real fish in a lake, river or the sea.


Hanging Fish and Adding Messages

You can check out the fun we had making stick fish in my Country Kids post here.

I'm linking my Stick fish tutorial up with Magic Moments and What's the StoryMonday Parenting Pin it Party Tuesday Tutorials Pin Party Homemade Thursday 

Silent Sunday / Project 52

August 9, 2014 at 11:30 PMCoombeMill



Tree Climbing at Coombe Mill  

  TheBoyandMe's 365 Linky   OneDad3Girls   

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

August 8, 2014 at 11:40 PMCoombeMill

Gone Fishing

The farm has been buzzing in recent weeks with all our properties filled for the summer season and lots of eager faces both new and returning here to enjoy the magic of the farm. Along with a burst of summer growth around the farm our lakes are looking stunning an teaming with fish and wildlife. 


 Carp Lake in the evening sun

I decided this would make the focus of our activity hour a couple of weeks ago and set about a whole fishy theme. First of all we collected some sticks with a slight bend in them. This wasn't as hard as it sounds as nature caters well for less than perfectly straight sticks and this was just what we needed to make our fish. After securing the ends the children had fun weaving ribbons through them and drawing an eye to make them their own.


Making sticks into fish

I love how the children learn from what each other are doing and I'm always grateful for the help of Farmer Kym, Amber our Apprentice at Coombe Mill and the parents who bring the children to help with the fiddly bits since these sessions can be busy and everyone tends to need help at the same time!


 A helping hand from grownups with crafts

With our fish complete the children wrote and drew messages to attach to their fish or weave into their bodies, this was left to them to design and some were to the fairies and others about the time they had spent over the week on the farm. They were all very touching.


Adding fairy messages to stick fish

Next up a trip to the fairy garden where we hung our fish from the branches. They looked lovely spinning in the breeze.


Fish in the fairy garden


I wanted to extend the fishing idea and bring us back to the real world so we took some fishing nets, buckets and worksheets I had prepared over to the far lake to see what we could find.


Pond dipping worksheets


The older children clambered down the back and swished their nets far and wide while the grownups kept a careful hold on the younger children so they could have a go. Farmer Nick's winter jobs list might just include building an easy pond dipping platform for little ones as I rather fancy revisiting this activity when the frogspawn are around in spring. It wasn't long before we were ticking carp, damselflies, and pond skaters off our tick sheets and overrunning the hour.


Pond dipping on the Coombe Mill lake


Our fun afternoon from crafting through to the evening train ride on video



Joining in with Country Kids  

Country Kids is all about encouraging children away from screens and the ease of indoors into some outdoor fun. All activities including crafting, learning, exploring or playing are welcome here on the linky. Outdoors can be anywhere from the garden to the beach, a play park, a forest walk or even a trip to the city so long as it is outside. With the beautiful summer weather this year being outdoors has never been so easy so do come and share your fun times. It helps if you can please grab the badge or link back to this page and do remember to check on a few of the other posts here, it might just be the inspiration for your next adventure.


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

Pin on the Pinterest Board Just ask for an invite to pin 

Join the Google Plus community page  for Country Kids

Share your posts on  Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids


A few of my favourites from last week:

There were so many wonderful posts to choose from and I love that so many of you had an amazing time spending very little. It is family time and state of mind that creates the fun not expensive places.

Camping has been popular this holiday and Deep in Mummy Matters has 3 posts on her fun holiday. Here is part one

Camp Bestival looks like effortless with so many children for Chelsea Mamma

I love this journey stick from Kids in the Garden, it is like my fairy wands in a new form and I shall copying this for Activity hour here on the farm.

I've often seen Arundel from the road and thought it a an impressive castle. These posts from Over 40 and Mum to One and Soup Draggon Says suggests it is definitely worth a visit on one of there special event days

Ambleside sports day from Lakes Single Mum looks like the sort of Country Fun I can't resist

A perfect birthday for the price of a bottle of fizz with Diary of the Evans Crittens

I love the look of this decoder ring for a scavenger hunt by Keithas Chaos

I love this post from Mummy Constant just for the wonderful photos at the splash pool.


Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Win a Personalised Character book from Penwizard

August 4, 2014 at 7:30 AMCoombeMill

Reading is a great love of mine and an important skill for children to learn. However I am aware that trying to encourage kids to read can be a difficult task, especially in this day and age when they are more interested in games consoles and computers. I have found that if a book is going to capture the mind of a young child it needs to be interesting, imaginative and illustrative with something extra on the side to hook them.

Encouraging Kids to Read



Introducing Penwizard

Penwizard Logo

Penwizard found us on twitter following a conversation from Liquorice UK’s Country Kids post about a day trip to Peppa Pig World. From here I discovered that Penwizard offer personalised children’s books, including Peppa Pig, which I thought was a great idea. What could get a child interested in reading more than a book about themselves? A book that contained both them and their favourite characters.


Books from Penwizard

The Little Boy Who Lost His Name

I knew immediately the books from Penwizard would be perfect for the age range of the children visiting us here at Coombe Mill. We have introduced a weekly activity hour this summer for the children and I had a hunch they would enjoy one of these stories as part of that hour; all I had to do was decide the best way personalise the book for us. After a good browse around the lovely books on their website I found one called ‘The Little Boy Who Lost His Name’ and that gave me the inspiration I needed. Farmer Nick is the guest’s favourite person here, so a story about how he found his name is a perfect addition to the Coombe Mill bookshelf.


On the Bookshelf

Ordering the book was easy and Penwizard were quick to respond on twitter so I had no worries that if an issue occurred I could sort it promptly, however everything went through smoothly and my Farmer Nick book was ordered. My favourite thing about the ordering process was that I could preview The Little Boy Who Lost His Name to ensure I was completely happy with it.


Personalised Book Giveaway


The book is beautifully illustrated with a perfect balance of writing to pictures and is made of a quality thick paper, though worth noting it is a paperback not a hard back. The storyline is fast paced and full of different characters. For activity hour I had a blanket laid out with the book on it whilst we were working on our crafts, I noticed many eager eyes kept looking towards the book with curiosity on their faces. So, when at the end of the hour I asked if they would like a story, I had plenty of takers. They were all fascinated with how the story progressed and when we reached the end and the little boy's name was Farmer Nick they chuckled. 


Reading The Little Boy Who Lost His Name.

Penwizard offer many different types of books all of which are personalised for your child. The various characters include Peppa Pig, Roary, Noddy and Fifi and the Flowertots as well as storylines about princesses, football players, wizards and knights.

Your chance to win with Penwizard and Coombe Mill

Penwizard have offered a giveaway for one of you to win your own character book personalised for your little one. The offer is for a character book and the postage worth £17.49 in total (If you win and would prefer The Boy / Girl Who Lost his / her Name as reviewed here you are welcome to pay the difference of just £5). Just follow the instructions below to be in with a chance of winning:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received my copy  of The Little Boy Who Lost His Name for the purpose of this review and giveaway. All thoughts and opinions are my own and those of the children who read the book with me.

MamaMummyMumWe're going on an adventure

Silent Sunday / Project 52

August 2, 2014 at 10:40 PMCoombeMill



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Posted in: On the Farm | Weekly Photo


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