Family farm holidays in Cornwall magical for children, toddlers and babies.
Coombe Mill Blog
"Tales from the farmers wife" shares the funny and interesting happenings on our lovely holiday farm with Farmer Nick and our 6 children. A behind the scenes look on balancing family, farming, the holiday business and cooking for all.
My Shirley Valentine Beach Moment in Cornwall
Be Shirley Valentine in Cornwall on our hidden beach. A lesser known beauty spot. Enjoy a glass of wine on a summer's evening and soak up th... Read More
Studying Caterpillars and Butterflies for The Big Butterfly Count
The Big Butterfly count is on till 20th August. See what is triving in your arrea and try these fun crafts for kids to support your study. ... Read More
Paddington Sightseeing Adventures Board Game
Help Paddington find his way home through London's famous sights in Paddington Sightseeing Adventures, the board game, from University Games... Read More
Caramel the alpaca loses his winter coat
Caramel the Alpaca has his winter coat sheared to the audience of our holiday guests. A relief for the alpaca and a treat for the geusts to ... Read More
Campfire and bark rafts down the welly walk.
Adventure down the welly walk with a campfire and bark rafts. Shade from the sun and a stream to sail the rafts, bubbles to catch and a rope... Read More
Back over the Easter Holidays we started our Kindness trail. The children had a lovely time spotting all my giant painted stones and plaques and helping to start a wishing tree. As summer arrived the stones became buried in lush new growth and Farmer Nick had to rescue them and hammer them onto batons in the ground for me. I also added a wishing well next to the wishing tree and the trail took on a new lease of life. I was keen to use the newly refurbished trail to build on our Easter activities around trust and friendship. This time instead of stones we created kindness bunting, played some games centred on trust and finished off with rainbow friendship bracelets.
As it was half term I had a huge variation in age from 2 – 11. I wasn’t sure quite how it would work and at first I only had the younger children as the older girls were busy playing with the ponies up in the field.
However as I set to work in the afternoon sun with the younger children a couple of the older girls came down to join us. Cutting the material was always going to be a challenge for the younger children but the older girls were able to work independently. We choose colourful material from my scrap collection and stapled while sheet over the top to create a mounted piece of bunting. The children all chose their own kindness message to add in pen.
While the older girls finished their bunting pieces I took the younger ones off across the fairy gardens to hunt for kindness rocks to tick off on their sheets.
We attached all the bunting shapes along string to create our kindness bunting adding the older girl’s pieces at the end as they finished carefully writing. Then we set off up the kindness trail in search of the plaques with messages. I was very impressed with how well the 5 year old’s read and identified each plaque to mark off on their sheets and their enthusiasm running from one to another as they saw them approaching .
Make a wish
The little well was an instant distraction. The children added grass and flowers to the bucket and wound it up and down.
It turns out we were missing one plaque, it must be buried deep in the summer growth on the slopes and I’m now determined to take a long stick and have a good look for it. We hung our bunting between two trees on the trail and watched it flutter in the breeze.
Back down on the grass we began our trust games; I had a set of games I thought everyone could manage. Many involved a blindfold and instructions demonstrating the need to trust the instructions given.
Finally we settled back down and made kindness bracelets with little animal trinkets. I taught the children how to finger knit the wool which gave it both stretch and width. They were delighted with the results.
As always it was an action packed afternoon with a little gentle learning and a lot of friendship fun.
Kindness bunting trust games and friendship bracelets
If you have a football mad tween enjoying the world cup at the moment we have just the books for them. Top of the League Football Facts and Trivia and 50 things you should know about Football are perfect for football fanatics. Watch the games and stars of today become the facts and trivia of tomorrow. These fully revised editions bring the reader right up to date with players and leagues as well as delving into some fun moments in history. To find out more and be in with a chance of winning our own copies of the books read on.
Top of the League
The book has everything young football fans will love. Impactful illustrations support clever tactics, legendary matches are shared with fun trivia to take kids from beginners to experts. I love the rules of the game at the back; finally I think I understand the off side rule! The book isn’t just for boys either; there is a whole section on women’s football. I had no idea women were playing matches as far back as 1895.
50 Football things you should know about
Discover how football spread across the globe as the most popular sport. Meet the stars in each country, see how mascots play their part, who ended up in major films and how technology has influenced the game. This book is packed with interesting bit sized snippets carefully presented to capture the eye of kids even if they are not prolific readers. I really appreciated the words in bold all being in a glossary at the end. Very handy for a non expert!
Both these books you can just pick up and put down, read in bite sized chunks and revisit many times over. It didn’t take my football mad son to get his head in them, and that isn’t something I see too often.
We were sent our copies of top of the League and 50 Football things for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Our copies can be borrowed by our holiday guests from the Coombe Mill library in the games room.
From the start of June each year we are on the lookout for baby deer fawn in our deer field. Last year we didn’t spot any in the early days, instead waiting until they were grown sufficiently to run with the heard. It was 2016 when I last spotted a deer calf hiding. This year we have been lucky again and our group searches revealed our first fawn hiding in the bracken.
How to behave with baby deer fawn
The only means of defence for a baby deer fawn is camouflage. They are vulnerable to many predators, notably birds of prey, foxes and badgers. The mother’s visit them for feeds and then just leave them hidden. The fawns know to just keep still, like a game of statues, until mother returns. If you are close to a baby fawn the mother will not approach, instead she will stand back and watch you from afar; hoping to fool you into thinking her hidden baby is not there. For this reason if we are lucky enough to spot a hidden baby we never go too close. Watching from a short distance will prevent a human scent trail being left for predators to follow. By standing back the baby will hope they have not been spotted and remain as still as a statue, with just their eyes following you. If you go very close the baby will have no option but to try and run for safety, but with no idea where mother is or where to run this can be a disaster. In our field it is easy for them to re-hide in the bracken but it can still alert a predator to their presence so we try to avoid this at all cost.
The perfect location
Our first discovery was in a typical location, hidden in bracken beneath an oak tree. Fortunately this was just below a granite outcrop that gave everyone an opportunity for a reasonable look from above without the need to walk too close.
Zoom lens from a safe distance, still this little one knows we are there.
As we turned to walk away I spotted the mother watching anxiously from afar.
The mother wasn’t taking chances, by the following morning she had moved the baby deer fawn to a new hiding place. However we have since spotted more, of course we are never sure if we keep seeing the same ones or different ones! As this is the first year our new stag has worked the field we are thrilled to see his success.
No dual parenting here….. our Stag waking from a nap in the Bracken.
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 #50 things along with all other ideas for family fun outside.
Heatwaves are great if you are on holiday!
Well it isn’t often I’m handing out sun safety advice and suggestions for staying cool with kids in Cornwall. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining, I love this weather, but for our holiday makers with little ones it has been quite tough keeping them cool and equally the animals are feeling the heat and seeking shady spots to lounge around in after the morning visit from us. Having our own stretch of river to paddle in and the beautiful beaches nearby has been ideal. Whatever your plans for the week ahead I hope it includes some outdoor fun and as always please come and join me with your adventures on the link up below.
Guidelines for Joining in:
Post must be predominantly outdoors such as in the garden, the park, the woods or the beach with crafting, learning, exploring or playing.
Despite the title, both countryside and urban outdoor adventures are welcome.
Unheated covered areas like a barn or tent count as outdoors.
Please comment on my host post and a minimum of 3 others of your choice.
If you use #CountryKids when commenting the post owner will know where your found them and hopefully come back to visit your post.
Please take my badge, without it you won’t be considered for winning the lovely Rockfish Wellies.
Linked posts should be written and made live within the last 2 months.
I understand sometimes you need to do catch up posts and write about something from a couple of months ago but the publish date should be within 2 months.
There is no restriction on the number of posts that can be linked up, however please be sensible, if you have more than 3 consider linking over a few weeks.
Thanks to all of you who joined in last week and for the comments you took time to leave, we had a week with no link dumpers so a pat on the back to you all!
Rockfish kindly sponsor Country Kids
Win a pair of wellies from Rockfish Monthly
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 June Rockfish Wellies:
Top commenter: Elaine from Fun as a Gran
Yorkshire is a long way from us here in Cornwall but I’d love to visit some of the places Mummy Melton did
I’ve never been to Austria but Pink Oddy makes it look very beautiful
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.
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. We crossed the 10.000 post mark with outdoor fun in this community today which I find really exciting. Thank you to all who join in.
I had been creating a giveaway post for a lovely set of Lonely Planet Kids books all about recording holiday memories. One of the double pages reminded me of our popular colour by nature activity last year. With a little twist on last year and inspiration from the book I had a new afternoon of creative fun mapped out turning a rainbow of summer flower colours in to nature flags with a little challenge at the end.
After a beautiful sunny week we had a rumble of thunder and a few humid spots of rain just as we were due to start. I quickly ran through the idea of hunting for every colour under the rainbow in summer flowers and using these to complete nature boards and decorate homemade flags.
Scavenger hunt for a rainbow of summer colours
Then we took our boards of rainbow colours and collecting trays and scoured the lawns, gardens and hedgerows for a little of every colour. I have to say early summer is perfect for finding rich purples, pinks and yellows, though we did struggle with black. A few old leaves from last autumn were deep shades of brown and red and almost black as was the odd feather.
We stopped to see if there was nectar in the honeysuckle yet, smell the last of the wild garlic and play with sticky weed; these are all nature activities I remember from my own childhood.
Finally we took our brimming haul back to the craft tables. Thankfully the threatened rain never amounted to much. With a little sticky back tape we secured a sample of each colour to our rainbow pallet boards.
Lets get crafty with nature flags
Then with the creativity flowing we cut flags from old sheets and stapled them round collected sticks to make a flag. Once the fag was formed the fun started. The children took their time designing their nature flags, taking account of heavier items near the stick to allow the flag greater movement. We secured their chosen designs with sticky tape and staples and added a few felt tip finishing touches.
A crazy competition
I had a plan for our finished flags. We would use them on the crazy golf course in place of the regular flags and have a golf competition. I managed a quick snap of everyone with their flags before they chose a hole to make their own.
Then the fun began. We counted number of shots per hole taken by everyone, and thankfully with no rigging from me everyone won at least one hole!
We untied the nature flags for the children to take home with them as a little reminder of a fun afternoon on the farm.
“Tales from the farmers wife” shares the funny and interesting happenings on our lovely holiday farm with Farmer Nick and our 6 children. A behind the scenes look on balancing family, farming, the holiday business and cooking for all.