Silent Sunday / Project 52

Posted on May 27th, 2012 -

Sshhh….Its Sunday


Playing in the Bluebells at Coombe Woods


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Country Kids from Coombe Mill

Posted on May 26th, 2012 -

Coombe Woods

We had one of those Sundays where it is hard to go out and do anything. Dotty the pig had given us a proper fright in the morning and we were keen to stay around in the afternoon to check on her. Furthermore, the eldest two children were away on Scout camp, the youngest off to a birthday party, one was off playing with one of the guests leaving Guy and Theo at a bit of a loose end. They caught up with me checking on Dotty and asked if I could play with them. How could I refuse? I knew the woods backing onto our deer field was awash with bluebells so I was delighted when they suggested taking me to some of their favourite camps in there. Just a hop skip and a jump over the style and we are in a woodland wonderland


Jumping from Coombe Mill into the WoodsA beautiful woodland playground


Evidence of my children stretched far and wide with several half made camps on the go. We worked together building them for a while; they relished being in charge and advising me of where the branches should go. I was happy to oblige soaking up their enthusiasm.

 Den Building in the WoodsDen Building in the WoodsGuy builds himself a camp chair!


There are some beautiful old trees and I was soon treated to how high they could climb on their favourite ones. To save my nerves I diverted then into looking for wildlife. We saw a red deer in the distance, much larger than our fallow deer, and  inspired by the fairies and mystic of the woods by  More than a Mum and You Me & The Mindee’s on the Country Kids linky last week we searched for rabbit holes and tree crevices and wondered who might live there. 

Up high in the treesPretending to be a small animal sleeping in the woodsLooking for animal tracks and wildlife

Using the granite outcrops as a trampet I was treated to some gymnastics practice then nearly came a cropper trying to copy them! They both laughed their heads off at Mum on the rope swing; I must say I felt far from safe!

Fun on the rope swingFun on the rope swingMum on the Rope Swing 


This was my favourite part. The densely growing bluebells made a magnificent purple carpet, lying down we could hardly see each other. These snaps of us fooling around together are ones I will remember fondly for a long time and well worth the damp bottoms!  


Bluebells everywhere in the woodsBluebells everywhereBluebells everywhere


Joining In 

Country Kids is all about children enjoying the outdoors, in any way they can. If you have an outdoor experience to share from fun in the garden to a day out with the family please join me on the Country Kids liny here. Do take a minute to read and comment on what others have been up to too, there are so many lovely ideas each week many of which cost next to nothing. 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

Posted on May 25th, 2012 -

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

The Versatile Blogger Award

Posted on May 23rd, 2012 -

Delighted to be nominated


This meme asks for 5 random facts about yourself and to tag 5 people to do the same.

My thanks to the ever happy and friendly Emma who blogs at The Mini Mes and Me  for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award. If you haven’t read her family blog yet do pop over and have a read. I discovered from Emma’s  Versatile Blogger Post that she has an unusual passion for pain, by way of bruises from paintballing, or at least that is the story she give us *cough’s loudly* I did initially think I had already been awarded this prestigious award, after feeling certain I had dragged through my memory previously in search of interesting personal facts. It turns out I was deluding myself as I had completed a similar but different meme here . Just thought I would drop that in, since looking back they seem like a cool collection and I am now scrapping the barrel for more!

5 random (new) facts about me 

1. This one is a little weird and freaky: I am double jointed in my fingers and can move in strange ways; check this out!

 Bending in strange waysFinger splitsExtra bendy

2. I love frozen peas, I mean actually frozen! I am quite incapable of cooking peas without popping a handful straight into my mouth before they hit the pan of water.


3. My boys still think I am joking when I tell them I won a tank driving competition years ago on a corporate team building day. I beat all the men in the genuine monster size tank across a tricky country course. A real one up for women drivers!


Sewing Machine, Unused with cover on.

4. I can’t sew! I have a lovely sewing machine sat in my office gathering dust. Even adjusting curtains is too much for me. This feels like such a confession when I follow so many crafty blogs with beautiful sewn and embroidered products like Silver Birch Crafts and Just Bunting.  I will have Nick re hang a curtain track, which he does with ease, rather than attempt the sewing machine. The children wait weeks for me to get round to sewing on scouting badges, sewing badge should be the first one they work towards! My sewing phobia dates back to school and being ridiculed by the teacher for sewing over the arm hole on my gilet! 


5. I am a bargain hunter, especially when it comes to clothes. I am much happier rummaging in a charity shop for a missed designer gem than shopping for new amongst the racks of garments pushed as this year’s trend. I keep promising myself I will link up with the lovely  for her weekly Magpie Monday linky as most of my wardrobe would qualify! Magpie Monday is just as it suggests a linky on second hand bargains you have purchased recently hosted by Liz over on her blog Me and My Shadow. Liz has a lovely writing style and some great competitions so well worth visiting her blog. As a meme linky double up here is my entry, it is a lovely cocktail dress and little bolero jacket, bought at Age Concern in Wadebridge whilst waiting for Clio’s weekly ballet lesson! I am considering wearing it in September to the MAD Blog Awards

 Bargain find Bargain huntBargain hunt

  Why not hope over to Liz’s site and see what bargains others have unearthed. Just click on the magpie.

Me and My Shadow


Continuing the Versatile Blogger Meme

I am now tagging the following lovely bloggers as I would love to read their 5 random facts: 



Dotty, we love you!

Posted on May 21st, 2012 -

A long pregnancy on Dotty Watch

We have new born animals on the farm from February to late summer but we only have one pig. Dotty is a pure Gloucester Old Spot who visits her boyfriend just once a year. Commercial pigs will have up to 3 litters of piglets a year, but there is no way we would do that to Dotty, she is almost a pet to us. This year for the first time I have been charting Dotty’s last few weeks on facebook and twitter and have been delighted by the support from followers and holiday makers keen to wish her well.  

March "Dotty Watch"April "Dotty Watch"May "Dotty Watch"

A long night in labour

Dotty struggled on two weeks over due from the original dates we identified. I am sure in hindsight our dates were lacking in accuracy, anyway after several false starts by Wednesday last week I was in no doubt this was the real thing. All evening we watched and photographed. I even trekked out alone with a torch at 11.30 for a final check. A collision with the field shelter roof beam left me on my backside with a grunting Dotty, but no piglets.

A final stroll and drink in laourA long night ahead

12 Bouncing bonny piglets

Farmer Nick is our early riser and by 6.30am he had come back to the house to report 7 piglets. By the time I had come to and checked at 8am there were 12 and 4 still born. The younger children and I dealt with the messy business with the afterbirth and stillborns ahead of the feed run with the guests since Farmer Nick and the older children were already off to school by then. The children couldn’t have been happier helping the piglets find their way to their first milk and sneaking in a quick hold. For once I think they had a fair excuse for being 5 minutes late for school and for less than clean uniforms; we even forgot to practice our times tables on the way!  Posting the news and first picture up on facebook I was overwhelmed with ‘likes’ and well wishes. Thank you to all who commented or liked!

Dotty and her new born piglets A quick cuddleClio and Piglet


This video is just adorable. I have watched it over and over, it is amazing how Dotty allows the piglets to run and sniff all around her face and then nudges them back towards her belly for milk. 



All not well!

By Sunday morning we were beginning to worry. Correction, Nick was beginning to worry and left an early morning message with the local font of all knowledge on pigs. I was more than worried and rang the Sunday out of hours vet (a somewhat more expensive exercise!) Dotty had not eaten since giving birth, and really looked under the weather. I worried all the way around the feed run, Dotty lay quite still, ears flopped grunting quietly as the children and parents all came to admire her. I knew she should have been up and eating by day 2 and this was day 3 and the piglets didn’t appear any fatter than when they were born. One of the guests reported seeing Dotty out of her shelter earlier and straining hard for a poo to no avail and I feared that perhaps there was some after birth left behind and causing problems. I was willing on the vet to arrive and wondering, if the worst happened, could I hand raise 12 piglets?  


A poorly looking DottyVet checks out DottyTemperature check


Fingers crossed

The vet was excellent and Dotty was the perfect patient allowing all manner of poking up her backside to check everything out. After a cocktail of injections to help her milk flow, boost her system and ease the constipation Dotty was up on her feet and looking much better than she had for the last 12 hours. Thankfully there were no birthing leftovers and the Vet assured us she had delivered well. Nick still has 2 needles of potion to administer today but for now I am so much happier.  After a long afternoon siesta Dotty and her piglets were looking much stronger. We take each day at a time here on the farm and just hope she builds her strength up a little more each day.


Piglet and Me Dotty up and about and looking much brighterPiglet out in search of Mummy


 Please support my blog

Thanks to the wonderful support for my blog  I am a finalist in the Mad Parenting Awards and the Loved by Parents Awards. I am in Small Business and Family Fun with MADS and Blogger of the Year as Fiona Cambouropoulos under special awards with Loved by Parents. I fear you may all have award fatigue but if you have not yet done so I would really appreciate your vote.