We love how Quarto Kids books inspire young readers. Their nonfiction ranges may vary but always have something to make learning fun. Weather it is activity books with things that pop up, pop out or stick on or quirky facts that appeal to young minds, they have a knack of picking the books kids will adore. We have been testing two of the latest in their Natural History Museum range; 10 reasons to love a turtle and 10 reasons to love an elephant. Both books are packed with interesting information in bite sized chunks perfect for kids. For your change to win a set read on to find out more.


10 reasons to love a Tuttle or Elephant


These lovely quality hardback books have a ‘reason to love’ on each page. Kids will love the random facts, learning about these ancient animals and boost their affiliation with them. There are also practical tips on how to help with their conservation.


Inside pages of 10 reasons to love a Turtle or Elephant

10 Reasons to love an Elephant

There is so much to learn about these gentle giants of the land and the book gives a wonderful glimpse into their lives.

I was particularly taken with elephant fact 3 which tells of how they spread plant seeds in the forest by eating them and then pooing them out in a different place where they then grow into new plants. I might add the same is true of Sally our pig at Coombe Mill. We had a crop of cucumbers seeded in her old garden the year after we moved her pen, no prizes for guessing what her favourite treat was the year before!

10 reasons to love a turtle.

Turtles are one of the oldest species around today. They are now protected species and the book will help you understand a little about their lives and how we are trying to protect them. We have recently visited a turtle conservation beach in Greece where we saw protected turtle nests and tracks. Everything I learned on holiday was all in the book from Quarto and explained in the most engaging way.  For example in protected areas, like the one we visited, there are no built up areas immediately next to the beach as this could disorientate the new born turtles. They need to hatch and crawl towards the light of the sea to begin their life.

Need to know facts

Price per book £9.99
Published by

Frances Lincoln for Quarto Kids

In association with the Natural History Museum

Written by  Catherine Barr
Illustrated by Hanko Clulow
Available from Quarto Kids online
Book format



Win your copy of 10 reasons to love an Elephant and 10 reason to love a turtle

If this little taster has given you a flavour of these fascinating books, why not enter to win a set. Simply follow the instructions below.

Good luck to all taking part.

10 reasons to love elephants and turtles


I was sent my copies of the books for the purpose of this review. Our copies can be borrowed from the Coombe Mill book store. All thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own.

I do love the school holidays for the adventurous spirit of the older children. Every holiday we have someone who starts up a fun river adventure. Years ago it would have been my own children, now I smile as I hear the screams of joy from the riverbank as the next generation discover the wonder of the river. A summer characterised by heavy downpours and sunshine has left the river has been running higher than expected. This has left it at a level that is safe enough for older children to enjoy and fast enough to give the adrenalin and fun factor they all crave. It was a group of our regular guests who delighted in borrowing wetsuits and body boards from our store room to make their own day of fun body boarding the length of Coombe Mill through the river. There were little rapids to tackle and Dad’s on hand to add the extra splash factor at the end by the road bridge.


Body boarding in the rapids in the river Camel


Heading into the rapids upstream

Surfing through rapids in the river Camel

Recreating the rapids downstream

Kids splashing with Dads in the river Camel at Coombe Mill Holidays

Finishing at the old bridge

Body boarding under the bridge


river team at the end of body boarding


Harnessing nature for a day of simple entertainment like this is magical to watch. No play station or X box can re create the fun these children had as they joined hands and boards to speed through the water.  Later that day I told them it was possible to body board all the way down to the start of the Camel Trail. They were only too keen to take up the challenge, and I hoped I hadn’t suggested too much for them as the current was stronger than when my own kids had tried. Thankfully they all managed the challenge and were back in the water again the next day for more.  I’ll put money on this being the highlight of their summer holiday and with any luck the fun factor that will have them returning to Coombe Mill again next year.



Welcome to Country Kids from Coombe Mill 

Country Kids is the original outdoor family fun linky designed to: 

“Encourage family fun outdoors, in an age where technology and screens are such a draw to a sedentary indoor life”

Welcome back if you are a regular to Country Kids and if you are new please join in. You will find plenty of inspiration for enjoying outdoor space and please do share your own adventures. We support the National Trust 100 things to do before you are 11¾ along with all other ideas for family fun outside. 


Body boarding in the rapids in the river Camel

 Bring on the Bank Holiday Activities 

Where has summer gone? I can’t believe we are now into the bank holiday weekend and the children will soon be back to school. Each year I’m sure the holidays pass faster. I’m still to sort out school uniforms and shoes for the new term, we’ve just been having too much holiday fun. Fingers crossed you are more organised than me and are all sorted with a few outdoor adventures to share on the link up below too. 

Guidelines for Joining in: 

My top commenters from last week:

  1. Caroline from Two Plus One is Three & Sonia from Mummy Constant who commented on 21 posts.
  2. Sara from Mum Turned Mom who commented on 18 posts.
  3. Cheryl from Time to Craft who commented on 11 posts.

A huge Country Kids welcome to Caroline from Two Plus One is Three, Louise from We Travel in Threes & Laura from The Mamma Fairy who all joined in for the first time this week!

We had 1 bloggers link dumping this week, please do remember I comment count on Thursday after lunch so get your comments in before then to be counted.

Rockfish kindly sponsor Country Kids 

Win a pair of wellies from Rockfish Monthly

You Could Win with Rockfish Wellies and Country Kids from Coombe Mill 

I am delighted to have Rockfish as the sponsor for Country Kids. Rockfish are a local Cornish company specializing in stylish quality wellingtons for all the family. We have been offering their country wellies in our borrow room here on the farm for over a year and they are always popular for their style, comfort and durability.

Each week my favourite #CountryKids posts, which include my badge or a link back here,  will be considered for a free pair of Rockfish Wellies at the end of the month; the perfect way to enjoy the outdoors whatever the weather throws your way. Keep your posts coming, it could be you winning next!

For more more information on the Rockfish Wellies on offer with us and terms and conditions to win see here. 


Favourite posts from last week added to the shortlist for winning the August Rockfish Wellies:

Top Commenter : Caroline from Two Plus One is Three and Sonia from Mummy Constant

Stopping at Two enjoyed a fun-filled day at Countryfile Live with wool spinning, dog agility and so much more.

Canoeing down the river turned into a real adventure for Mum Turned Mom and her family.

Country Kids 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.

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


Join the growing Country Kids Instagram Community with #CountryKidsFun.

I'll like and comment on all and share my favourites from the week with a tag on a Friday on Instagram and Twitter. With over 5885 posts this community is flourishing with outdoors photos.

My favourite photos from the week came from @mumof2point5@i_am_carop, @claudine.fontana & @chelseamamma. Please do check out these lovely folk on Instagram if you are not already following

#countrykidsfun featured images for the week from @mumof2point5 @i_am_carop @claudine.fontana @chelseamamma. Thank you for all the lovely tags on outdoor fun this week. Please keep them coming. Remember the #countrykids link up is live from midnight tonight. #fairy #princess #ferns #outdoorsandhappy #explorerkids #log #tractor #adventureisoutthere #funseekingkids #outdooradventures #kidsoutdoors #nature #summerholidays

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Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall 

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There are so many of my activities with the children that vary from week to week, but a few are steeped in tradition and fixed to certain weeks of the year. The Nature raft Race is one such event created years ago with The Boy and Me who has stayed with us on the same summer week for years. Thanks to quite a bit of rain this summer and the river running higher than usual I suspected that, apart from my own children, we wouldn’t have too many in the river at the end this year. However I had another surprise up my sleeve to make the afternoon fun and memorable for everyone.

What is a Nature Raft Race?

The idea is to build a mini raft entirely from nature and then have a race from one bridge to the next. It is rather like a giant game of pooh sticks but with plenty of care and competition in the raft building process too.  

Our first job once the rules were clear and my example raft shown, was to go off on a nature hunt to gather the resources. Family, friendship and individual teams all ventured off in search of the perfect materials.


Hunting for nature to build a raft

Building nature rafts

There was a buzz of excitement as the teams set to work designing, building and creating. Welding joints using just grass and bendy branches isn’t easy, but patients paid off and each team had their own unique raft coming together.


Making nature rafts for a raft race on the river Camel


Raft business can be hungry work so I had a fresh batch of marshmallow cakes on hand for everyone to dip into. This certainly spurred on little helpers.


Cake eating at the 2017 nature raft race at Coombe Mill

Finished family team nature raft 

Annual Nature Raft Race 2017

My secret surprise

Finally each team added their decorative and technical final touches while Amber and I, as judges, filled out certificates. We had a little awards ceremony with everything from most creative raft to best teamwork covered and the children were thrilled with their certificates.


Awards for raft building

Ready to Race

Carefully the teams made their way to the starting line stopping for a quick photo before taking their positions on the bridge.


Ready for the 2017 Nature Raft Race at Coombe Mill


Like pros the race began with no false start and no cheating. Instantly excitement flooded the air as the children raced down the river bank to see who would be the winner.


Starting bridge for the Nature Raft Race at Coombe Mill


All credit goes to Jed and Clio, two of my teens who waded down the river after the rafts to ensure none were caught on rocks and lost to the river fairies!  


Following rafts through the water


Watching the first rafts over the winning line is like standing on the finishing line at the races. There was much shouting and cheering.


The excitement of raft racing on the farm. #coombemill #raftrace #raft #river #rivergames #countrykidsfun #outdoorsandhappy #funseekingkids #adventureisoutthere #countrylife #holidayfun #funtimes #farmstay #farmfun

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Winning rafts

To complete our nature raft race we had held back 4 certificates to honour the winning rafts. It was all done in great sporting fun and enjoyed by all.

Winners in the Nature Raft Race


If you have a local park with a river this could be a great activity to do there. It can be quite impromptu using just the nature around you.



Country Kids

If you have tweenage girl age 8 – 13 Gel-a-Peel creative jewellery making is this seasons must have craft kit. Let their own unique style shine through as they design and create the latest fashionable jewellery with their own quirky touches. Let imaginations run free and designs be as wild as you dare. Make something for a BFF or work together on a fun play date. If you have a creative tween this would appeal to then read on to find out more about how Gel-a-Peel works and how you could win an accessory pack and get designing for yourself.

Win a Gel-A-Peel craft kit

Get to grips with Gel-a-Peel

The gel comes in coloured tubes that you squeeze to make your design, much like icing a cake. Everything you need from starter templates to a tray to let your designs set is included in the pack. Be as adventurous as you like with the designs or follow the simple template shapes provided. Simply leave to set, peel, wear and share!  

Creating the Gel-a-Peel bracelets

What we thought of Gel-a-Peel

See how we got on designing a Gel-a-Peel bracelet and creating fun letters with the templates provided in this fun little video.


Need to know Facts for the Gel-a-Peel Glow in the Dark Accessory Kit

Retail price £14.99
Stockists argos
Pack contents 3 glow in the dark gel tubes, 16 design templates, 5 designer tips, and a new gel tray, two pieces of accessory hardware and cleaning tool
Age range 8 – 12
Find out more for tips & tricks, cool how-to videos visit www.gel-a-peel.com


What's in the box Gel-a-Peel


Win your Gel – a – peel glow in the dark kit with Coombe Mill

If you fancy winning this fun and creative kit for your tween just follow the instructions below. Good luck to all taking part.

Gel-a-Peel accessory craft kit


We were sent our kit for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own