Halloween Magic

Posted on November 1st, 2011 -

A Great Build Up

What is the magic of Halloween? My children are so excited for a month beforehand planning costumes, making accessories and practicing dressing up. I am never quiet sure if it is the dark, the dressing up or the sheer number of sweets they are allowed all at one time which is the most exciting part. There are some lovely ideas on the web too to help inspire them. Here is one for making a broomstick from sticks in the woods which captured our children’s imagination http://multiplemummy.com/blog/craft-aventures-making-a-broom-stick/  

 Preparing Pumpkins

On the Day

Halloween has evoled at Coombe Mill over the years into a tried and tested format for our young guests. On the morning tractor rides we give plenty of warning to be prepared with pumpkins on the garden gate and dressing up clothes to impress. We go for an early 5.30 start to accomodate our tiny tots which leaves us parents racing to prepare dinner for them before the sweet eating begins!

The Witching Hour

At 5.30 an amazing array of dressed ghosts, witches and all round scary beings with torches and glow sticks crowd excitedly round our reception in anticpation of the fun ahead.Ready to go at Reception

Who’s afraid of the rain? 

The hevens really did open this year but out intrepid young trick or treaters were quite unphased and merrily processed from cottages to lodges welcomed by shining pumkins along the way. Then who wouldn’t given the delights that awaited them at every property!

Did it live up to the Hype?

My children would certainly say that this year, despite the rain was the best yet. A huge thanks to all the parents for making such an effort with bags of goodies, dressing up outfits and amazing decorations and to all Farmer Nick’s little helpers / turn spooky characters for being so well behaved and brave with all those frightening masks around! 

Highlights of a Fun Evening Captured

Pumpkin Soup all Round

If you are wondering what to do with last night’s pumpkin, then here is a great recipe I have just conjured up for ours. It was warmly received by my children with chunks of homemade bread as an instant meal after school and surfing at the beach today. (Yes surfing in November!)

Pumpkin Soup Ingredients


Pumpkin chunks (skin off), potatoes chopped, an onion, a couple of teaspoons each of cumin, paprika and cinnamon (a chilli and a pinch of cayenne pepper for the brave!) salt and pepper.


Boil all ingredients gently for about an hour and liquidizeCooking Pot of Pumpkin Soup

Serve with fresh coriander and a swirl of cream and dunk with crusty bread. Yum!


 Pumpkin Soup

Don’t forget Dotty!

If you are staying with us don’t forget that any of the pumpkin you leave Dotty the Pig and her piglets will be glad to receive!




More than a Holiday

Posted on October 31st, 2011 -

Where learning is fun

We all know kids learn best when they are seeing and doing and not just listening in the classroom. Coombe Mill allows children the chance to learn so much from science to geography. The daily animal feed run is always packed with inquisative children asking farmer Nick one question after another as they help him on his morning chores.Farmer Nick answers questions from children and parents


Practical learning on holiday can also be supported by our education pages which cover many of the national curriculum topics 




William’s Project

We were thrilled to hear that one of our young guests had chosen the River Camel for his school project. The river is a beautiful feature of Coombe Mill, enjoyed by our guests for fishing and play.  It clearly made an impression on William. We are delighted he has brought his project back with him on holiday to show us and agreed to share it here.


By William Age 8


I hope this is the first of many school projects we will be able to show case here on the blog. A huge thank you to William for sharing his good work. If anyone else has completed the education sheets, a Coombe Mill dairy or similar project to William and would be happy to share them please do let us know.

Silent Sunday

Posted on October 30th, 2011 -

I am spoilt for choice for this week’s Silent Sunday, so many happy memories from a wonderful half term, but here goes for one of my favourites:


Polzeath Beach with Lifeguard Flag


Cooks Surprise

Posted on October 28th, 2011 -

Is it a sauce, a jam or a coulee?

I am renowned for just bunging ingredients in a pot and cooking. It sounds random but usually I have an idea at the back of my mind which just develops as I go. I hate waste and love to use fruit and veg in season, especially if it is local or better still from our farm. Naturally when a friend offered me the last of her defrosting redcurrants from the depths of her freezer I jumped at the chance. Fruit jams and chutneys are not my strength but I was determined not to waste anything. Already defrosting I had to act fast and simply dumped the huge bag of redcurrants in a large pan with a large 1kg bag of granulated sugar. Possibly not the correct sugar, but the one I had in the kitchen! It slowly bubbled away and began to thicken. The pith and bits were just too much so I sieved the entire pan full and bottled in old coffee jars. 2 months later I am thrilled to say I am still using my redcurrant goo as a coulee on deserts, as a jam on toast, a sauce with roast chicken or a topping to homemade ice cream! 

I am proud to say that nothing goes to waste in our house, even the pigs rarely get a look in!

  Redcurrant jam all bottled up thick and delicious jamDelicious on ice cream with sliced banana

Recipe Shed

Country Kids

Posted on October 27th, 2011 -

Country Kids