Posted on November 12th, 2011 - Fiona
Enjoying the Autumn sunshine with friends on the farm
Country Kids is all about promoting healthy outdoor play. Even just 20minutes of fresh air in a day makes for much calmer children in our house. Whether it is the park, the woods or the garden, I hope you will capture those moments and share them here.
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Posted on November 12th, 2011 - Fiona
Are my Kids typical?
With 6 children in 6 years I suppose I have to expect a little banter, the odd fall out and a bit of possessiveness over toys. But when I signed up to 6 (OK not quite the right phrase) I really didn’t know what I was letting myself in for. As babies and toddlers the squabbles were mischievous and even endearing at times but underneath
it all there was no doubt they adored one another. Tears and howls of “mummy” one minute were laughter and play again the next. Some days were a joy and I can happily recount them playing for hours imaginary games, with soldiers and army teams, in dressing up clothes together or with friends. Happy days! Equally I remember feeling exasperated, permanently mediating and apologising to other parents for my children as they laid into one another with a thump, punch, scratch or bite. Disgraceful behaviour with much shouting and time out on the naughty step imposed from me, or a real talking to from Daddy (worse).
I believed at the time that they would grow through this stage, that the playful squabbles would reduce and sensible polite young people would emerge. Either I was mad to imagine this or Nick and I have gone horribly wrong along the way somewhere with our parenting style!
Am I the Original Shouty Mummy?
I still have days when I feel I am endlessly nagging and shouting at one or another. Days when they just seem to team up and decide whose turn it is to goad me next. I can’t tell you how many times I wake up and say to myself, today I am going to be really patient with my children and understand and encourage them more. Then it all goes wrong even before they are even dressed for school!
Whose fault is it anyway?
If I am honest, when things kick off there is usually a reason. Addressing the problem is always better than just shouting, but I am human too and it doesn’t always happen.
Thank goodness for space!
Having the farm is my salvation. To me, the children are just like puppies. When they all become unreasonable or start play fighting in the house they all find themselves marched outside. A healthy run around and calm is restored. I have space to think and they have space to run off some pent up adrenalin. If I didn’t have the farm I would definitely make a point of taking them to a park or something for at least half an hour a day. They often do this after school as well. Once everyone has calmed down I can assess what is behind the behaviour. Invariably it is one of the following, all of which are easy enough to sort but not always easy to identify at the time!
Top causes of sibling fighting in our home
- Tired children – Too many late nights from after school activities etc leaving them prone to pick at one another.
- Hungry – It is close to dinner time and Mummy is running late for any number of reasons! This seams to affect children so much more than adults.
- Lack of exercise or change of scene– I find indoor play at school on wet days the top culprit here.
- Finally me being tired! If I am tired then a playful squabble which is nothing serious can be blown out of proportion by me. Then I find myself shouting at them when it is really me who needs the time out!
How do you cope?
I would love to hear your thoughts, is it just my kids? How do you diffuse fractious fighting?
Posted on November 10th, 2011 - Fiona
I’ve been tagged by the lovely @welshmumwales in this meme of 10 Questions.
The rules are as follows:
1) Answer the 10 questions
2) Tag someone to do the same
3) Go and leave a comment on the original blog post over at Super Amazing Mum and comment that you have done so in order for us to find out who has been tagged and therefore find out more about our fellow bloggers!
So here goes….
1. Describe yourself in seven words
Married working Mummy, living life to full.
2. What keeps you awake at night?
Remembering things I forgot to do. I keep a pen and paper by the bed to try and write and forget. Oh and a “can’t put down” book will stop me turning out the light till my eyes refuse to focus!
3. If you could be anyone for day, who would you be and why?
Father Christmas, I’d get to make so many children’s day at Christmas and pig out on mince pies and brandy ‘hic’!
4. What are you wearing now?
Jeans, black boots, purple top
5. What scares you?
The thought of my 5 boys driving like loons around our country lanes in a few years time. Now that will keep me awake at night!
6. What is the best and the worst thing about blogging?
Best thing: I find it therapeutic and all absorbing
Worse thing: The spell check on my blog is temperamental and oh boy do I need ti, sorry it!
7. What was the last website you looked at?
Goggle analytics to see what people are searching to find our farm holidays
8. If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?
Loose the “mummy tummy”
9. Slankets – Yes or no?
I had to Google this one, never heard of them before, a definite no from me. I might frighten our guests off answering the door in one of those!!
10. Tell us something about the person who tagged you?
I was tagged by the fab @welshmumwales. Married and working with 2 lovely children. Welsh born and bread, loving blogging and beginning to love cooking. A great twitter friend who always replies to comments.
My Meme: 10 Questions all complete
For the next Meme: 10 Questions And now I tag the following
Posted on November 8th, 2011 - Fiona
Thanks to the internet, so much can be found these days at the click of a button. Recently I found myself caught up in a series of email exchanges from a lovely lady who holidayed at Coombe Mill with her Mum, Dad and 2 brothers in 1969 and 1970. Back then Coombe Mill was just a farm and a farm house with some camping. Linda had looked us up out of curiosity after reminiscing with her father not long before he passed away about their 2 lovely holidays here. I was thrilled when she agreed to me publishing her childhood memories and photos here on the blog!
Childhood Memories sent to Coombe Mill by Linda Ashcroft
“We stayed at the biggest house you have.. I don’t remember any lodges, maybe they were next on the agenda..”
Millers House – Then and Now!
“From memory the owners were called Mr and Mrs Lawrence, Mr Lawrence was ill at the time so we felt bad he was kipping in a caravan while we had his house!!”
“I can still smell the kitchen, it had bright yellow vinyl laid across it. All our shopping was there on arrival, Cornish pasties, eggs ,bread, fresh milk from Coombe Mill cows or goats in a big fridge with a ‘fat door’. The Lawrence’s used to come in (while we were out for the day) for the kid’s piano practice or to get something out the freezer in the locked store cupboard, a freezer was rare then. One day my Dad had stayed at the Mill and was having a lie down in the bedroom right at far end where there were 2 bedrooms near a main bath room…Mrs Lawrence came in and was having a bath and she never knew my dad was having a kip…funny!! Dad remained as quite as a mouse, as didn’t want to freak her out!!….like a carry on film eh!!
Such a quirky memory, I can’t quite imagine anything like that today! You will be pleased to hear we have our own house in the heart of the Coombe Mill estate. Camping out in the fields and popping in on our holiday makers to ‘borrow the facilities’ is so not my idea of country living or our guests idea of the perfect holiday. How things change!
“They had couple of kids and they had a horse called ‘OXO. This horse in question managed to get close to the house, there was a full length glass door in the middle hall I think directly opposite the main front door, it started to walk through the door on to the flag stoned floor!”
We still have the original flagstones in the downstairs living room.
“Up stairs the far bedroom (you could only get to it if you walked though another bedroom). from memory, had a wallpapered ceiling/dormer window papered in blue with stars. Beams as well…I slept there and my 2 brothers at the time were frightened of that room. They thought it was’ creepy’. I can remember looking out that window in there and the land was a bit lumpy and almost as level as the first floor window..”
The “creepy bedroom” is now the en suite to the master bedroom and the view from the bathroom window much the same!
“We felt like’ lords of the manor’..My Dad cleaned all the ornaments and brass that was about in Coombe Mill (Millers House), while we were there. I remember a piano and a store cupboard (locked) where they had a freezer . Next door was small house.”
The small house would have been Water Mill cottage which joins Millers at the corner. Not so small and in fact now makes a spacious cottage for 7! https://www.coombemill.com/cottages/water-mill
“There were goats down by the river. My Dad bathed the wounds around their necks from the collars they wore as they were tethered.”
Definitely no collars or tethering now for our goats. Amazing how the animal side of Coombe Mill is still a feature and the goats are still as popular as ever.
“A previous holiday maker did not have enough to pay for their petrol home so the Lawrences bought their massive tent off them so they had some cash. We then bought the tent off the Lawrence’s and erected it by the river. It was a magical holiday x 2”
What delightful people the Lawrences sounded. No camping here now I’m afraid, unless you count my children in the garden during summer time, but I can see why Linda would have remembered an event like that!
We bought my dad a bear at Tintagel as my dad was celebrating his 40th birthday in 1970. He gave us £5, a lot of money then , to go and find something nice for him. We bought the bear, a huge golden bear with a blue ribbon (well it seemed huge years ago!!) We still have the very bear, he is 41 years now! We used to put ’Arthur‘ (after king Arthur and his round table) ) in my Mums armchair after she died so Dad had company. Happy days, Arthur lives with me now! A constant memory of Coombe Mill.
“I can recall as we left Coombe Mill ,we packed our cases and left them outside over night (don’t ask me why we did this?) When we got home the cases were full of earwigs! Haha so funny! We travelled to Coombe Mill on both occasions in my Dad’s bright yellow campervan with a raised white top. By our 2nd visit in 1970 we had my little baby brother Scott too.”
Such a strange thing to leave the cases out all night, can’t imagine what that was about.
“My dad died last month and we were talking to him about Coombe Mill, a fond memory.”
A huge thanks to Linda for sharing her very personal thoughts on her family and their holidays here at Coombe Mill. Linda is now booked to come back and visit us in the Spring with her husband, that really will be a trip down memory lane!
Posted on November 7th, 2011 - Fiona
Country Kids: Bonfire week