This is My World by Lonely Planet Kids

Posted on September 16th, 2019 -

It can be so easy to become wrapped up in our own lives. The day to day of family life, school, homework, clubs and playtime can be all consuming. However have you ever stopped to wonder how similar, or different, your child’s upbringing might be from others around the world? In “This Is My World” from Lonely Planet Kids, 84 children age 7 to 10 from around the globe sum up their life in words and pictures.  For anyone wanting to expand their knowledge of how different cultures live, this book is a fascinating insight. Read on to discover more and for you chance to win a copy.

This is my world

More about This Is My World

Discover what it is like to grow up in hot and cold climates, in rich or poor countries, in a house, an orphanage or a flat, a large family or a small one and what impact these things have on the children concerned.  Lonely planet Kids and have carefully researched the backgrounds of 84 different children. They have brought each life story to the reader over beautifully arranged double page spreads.

Pages from This is my World

What we love

  • Bite sized chunks of information from each child on their family and the things that are important in their lives.
  • Photos of the children with their families, their country and the things that are important to them.
  • A helpful colour coded reference guide to different continents
  • A fun to answer quiz at the end.  
  • An aid to social understanding, and human geography within the school curriculum
  • Good to know: £1 from every UK copy sold goes to War child UK – a registered charity helping children in war torn countries to a brighter future.

Need to know

Age Range7 – 10
StockistsLonely Planet Kids online store, Amazon, Good Reads
Book specification

176 pages


Dimensions: 237mm × 310mm



Win a copy of “This Is My World” by Lonely Planet Kids and Coombe Mill

For your chance to win a copy of this lovely recourse book and broaden your child’s appreciation of children around the world, simply follow the instructions below. Good luck to all taking part.

This is my World from Lonely Planet Kids


We were sent our copy of this is my World for the purpose of this review. However all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own. Our copy can be found in the Coombe Mill Games room library for our holiday guests to borrow.

DIY Teepee Making, Painting and Campfire Cooking

Posted on September 13th, 2019 -

I do enjoy the school holidays with an older group of children keen to embark on an adventure. It is a chance for me to indulge in some of the childhood fun I enjoyed with my own children.  I had been toying with making teepees’ for a while. With just the right place in mind and the perfect age group signed up to activity hour, I seized the opportunity.

DIY Teepee Making, Painting and Campfire Cooking

Welly Walk Challenge

The Welly Walk was my chosen campsite. It is accessed across the farm so I set the children up with a fun activity sheet for the journey and had all the things we needed already down there.

Scavenger Hunt sheet on Welly Walk

How to Make a DIY Teepee

Having collected a duvet cover, 3 bamboo canes and some farm bailer twine the kids set to work creating their own bespoke Teepee.  I showed them a photo and recommended style and then sat back to watch them create.

Making teepees

Spray painting DIY Teepee Designs

It wasn’t long before the teepees were taking shape. I opened up a bag of watered down poster paint in old window cleaner bottles and invited the children to spray paint their own personalised designs on the covers. It was such a lovely activity, the paint easily washed off clothes and skin and there was nothing to spoil or worry about. We even had a handy babbling stream next to us to rinse hands.

Making Teepee Flags

The final touch was stapling a square of material around a stick for a camp flag.

Flags for DIY Teepees

The kids were thrilled with the finished results and piled into their camps. It was lovely to see how much the parents enjoyed it all too.

inside DIY spray painted teepees

Campfire Cooking

While we were busy building our DIY teepees Guy had been making a fire pit campfire for us. The children wasted no time crowding round to take a marshmallow or lump of cookie dough to toast. There were some hungry children after all that creative camp building happy to indulge.

campfire cooking at coombe Mill Holidays

Rope Swing

the benefit of my chosen location was in any spare minute not only was there the stream to splash around in but also the Coombe Mill rope swing to enjoy.

rope swing

No wonder I ended up heading home and leaving families enjoying the afternoon at their newly made camps.   

End of DIY Teepee Making, Painting and Campfire Cooking

Tips for Making your own DIY Teepee with Children

Provide the basic equipment but leave then enough scope to make it themselves, or help make it depending on age
Outdoors is perfect for spray painting and pushing bamboo into the ground, but an indoor version could be handy on a wet day.
Campfire is optional but a lovely way to support the outdoor living idea. Make sure any fire is well supervised; hair hanging over the fire is a real hazard.

If you are planning a spot at distance prepare well so you are not running back and forth. Here is my check list:

For DIY Teepee Making:

  •  Scissors, stapler, duvet, bailer twine (string is just as good) DIY spray paint, bamboo canes or long sticks (3 per teepee)

And for the campfire:

  • Fire pit stones, sticks, firelighters, matches, marshmallows, cookie dough or other things to cook.


Portrait of an Artist: Vincent Van Gogh & Frida Kahlo

Posted on September 2nd, 2019 -

I’ll take a bet that you can visualise a Van Gogh painting, but who really knows the story behind the artist? The same is true for Mexican born Frida Kahlo. Both made such an impact on the world of art yet less is understood about the incredible personal stories that inspired their work. Read on to discover more about the artists behind the masterpieces and for your chance to win a copy of both books. This is one for young budding history of art enthusiasts.

Portrait of an Artist: Vincent Van Gogh & Frida Kahlo

Portrait of an artist: Vincent Van Gogh

The story behind Vincent Van Gogh is told in a child friendly manner, despite the difficult areas of his mental health and cutting of his ear.  Reading the book with its beautiful illustrations, you gain an insight into a troubled mind in a sensitive and caring way. Through this insight come the amazing paintings we remember him by to this day. Both books make a perfect introduction to the history of art, suitable for age 7+.

Pages from Vincent Van Gogh Book


Portrait of an artist: Frida Kahlo

Frida was born in Mexico. She ended up travelling through her work and marriage, but Mexico held her heart and inspired her now famous paintings. Frida spoke out for individuality, the need for women to be taken seriously in art, and became a real inspirational woman of her era. Her story will inspire young girls the world over to achieve their goals in life.

Pages from Frida Kahlo book

Need to Know

Portrait of an artist: Vincent Van Gogh

Portrait of an artist: Frida Kahlo

Age RangeAge 7- 11Age 7- 11
Product Details
  • Hardback
  • 32 Pages
  • Size: 8.5 in x 10.4 in / 215.9 mm x 264.16 mm
  • Hardback
  • 32 Pages
  • Size: 8.5 in x 10.4 in / 215.9 mm x 264.16 mm
PublisherWide Eyed : Part of Quarto KidsWide Eyed : Part of Quarto Kids
AuthorLucy BrownridgeLucy Brownridge
IllustratorEdith CarronSandra Dieckmann
StockistsQuarto on Line, AmazonQuarto on Line, Amazon


Video preview of both Books


Win your copy of Vincent Van Gogh and Frida Kahlo with Coombe Mill and Quarto Kids

For your chance to win these two inspirational books in the Portrait of an artist series with Quarto Kids simply follow the instructions below. Good luck to all taking part.

Portrait of an Artist: Vincent Van Gogh & Frida Kahlo Books


We were sent our copies of these educational books for the purpose of this review. All thoughts and options expressed are my own. Our copy of the books can be found in the Coombe Mill book library for guests to enjoy.


August reflections with Offers and Events September 2019 onwards

Posted on August 30th, 2019 -

How is it September already? A new term is about to start for those of us with school age children and autumn is beginning to show its hand. I’m always sad to see summer slipping away but equally excited for the beauty of Coombe Mill in autumnal shades.  We have plenty of exciting news from August to fill you in on as well as offers going forwards and our pick of Cornish events coming up for September. Do take a minute to have a read:

August reflections with Offers and Events September 2019 onwards

October Half Term

It looks like week commencing 26th October will be the big one here this year taking in all our Halloween fun. We are almost full for this week so be quick if you were thinking of joining us. If on the other hand you are lucky enough to have the week before as your half term, we’ve just adjusted the price down so pop over and have a look.


Halloween at Coombe Mill

Lower Prices for New Year

We have some new lower rates and flexible booking dates for the New Year period. If you fancy a little escape after the rush of all the family at Christmas why not think about chilling with us down on the farm. Or go the whole way and come for Christmas too. We make it so much fun for the children it really takes the pressure off parents to just chill and enjoy the whole festive period. 


Christmas at Coombe Mill

Get ahead for next summer

We are holding the prices from this year forward to next summer. Jump on board and book your favourite week and property now and give the family something to look forward to.


Summer at Coombe Mill

A holiday for us too

We managed a week away ourselves in August splitting our kids between coming with us and managing the farm. They were helped by my niece and her family. Huge thanks to the team who kept things running beautifully for us, we are just back and full of renewed energy and enthusiasm for the autumn season.


Family Team Photo at August Holiday time


Activity Hour

We have had a real mix of activities tailored to the age group each week. From woodland fairies to kite making, raft racing, teepees and campfires, the children have loved their afternoons of creativity here.

Activity Hour August 2019

On the Farm

Fishing enhancements

The fishing enthusiasts of Coombe Mill told us the brambles were being troublesome along the bank of the pond. We always like to deal with any issues as quickly as possible and Farmer Nick has been digging out a bramble free section, backfilling with chippings to make the perfect fishing spot. It has been well received by all and perfect for Guy who teaches the children here to fish on request.

fishing lake

Plenty of autumn logs

Ash die back has come over to our country from continental Europe. Sadly, just as the name suggests, it is killing the ash trees in our country from the ends of the leaves back to the trunk. We have been hit very badly in Cornwall and especially here at Coombe Mill where ash is widespread in our wooded valley. For safety reasons Farmer Nick and our boys have been cutting down the dying trees in public places before they caused a danger to anyone by falling. On the plus side there is going to be plenty of logs to fuel the woodburners in our cottages and lodges for the winter season and some fun additions to the fairy garden too.


The Animals

August is the calm before the storm. All the animals have been soaking up the sun and enjoying the last of the rich summer grazing. It is the month for putting on weight and fattening themselves up ahead of autumn – the season of love! Our Billy goat gruff is already beginning to smell of strong goat’s cheese and keen to be let in to woo his lady friends.


Animals at Coombe Mill August

Cornish Events September 2019 

Cornish Events September 2019




Find out more

Distance from Coombe Mill

New Trampoline and Play Park

Trenance Park Newquay

Daily 10 – 6

Trampolining From £10.50

Play park from £2.00 40 minutes

Motorfest Motoring Family Festival

Crantock, Newquay

1st September

 Adults £12 Child £9
40 minutes


Tintagel  Castle via new bridge Just openned



Daily 10am to 6pm

Adults £13 child £8 25 minutes

East Pool Mine Herritage Open Day


High Street Bodmin 5pm

14th September 10.30 – 4.30

Free 1 Hour 20 minutes


Steam and vintage Rally


St Mawgan, Newquay 

21st and 22nd September

Adult £5 children £3 40 minutes


Music Makers Weekend at Eden Project

Eden Project

21st and 22nd September

Free with entry to Eden project: Music to listen to and intstruments to make  40 mins

Lappa Valley (steam trains for kids) Grandparents Day 

Lappa Valley  28/29th September Grandparent goes free with full paying child 40 minutes

Nb: I have not been paid or sponsored to mention these places, they are just the Cornish events September for 2019 that I feel would be of interest to Coombe Mill Guests.

I hope you have enjoyed a wonderful summer and made the most of the holidays. Best wishes to all those going into a new school, class or preschool this term. I hope to see some of you here on the farm soon.

Fiona x

Country Kids linky  keep= Shank You Very Much  3 Little Buttons Confessions of a New Mummy  Mix It Up Linky “Reflections



Colourful Junk Model Raft Race

Posted on August 17th, 2019 -

Raft racing isn’t a new concept to us on the farm. It has been a popular activity hour for years. Typically we run a junk modelling version around Easter and a Nature Raft Race in August. Having missed the Easter slot this year with other Easter crafts, I wanted to resurrect the activity. With 15 children signed up, and a terrible forecast of rain, it felt like the right week.

Colourful Junk Model Raft Race

I spent the week collecting and washing up all the bottles from the Coombe Mill recycling centres and added to this a pile of sticky tape from the £1 shop.


Junk Model Raft Building in the Games Room 

Having set the bottles and tape up in the games room the children all crowded round to start building and creating. Before long the games room was a hive of creative chatter as bottles clinked and tape ripped.

Junk Model raft building

A splash of colour.

When the basic models had been created the children brought them outside to add paint. I had filled a collection of empty cleaning spray bottles with a watered down paint mix. These were perfect for squirting the inside of the clear bottles to bring colour without mess. The children could still hold the outside and with the lids replaced the river wouldn’t wash the colour away.

spray painting bottles

A little technical help

I gave a few tips on buoyancy and the need to weight rafts. The children graped this at once and braved the rain in search of sand and gravel to weight their rafts, and a few decorative bits for effect.

collecting nature for raft race

Ready to Race

Finally we set off for our launch bridge. Despite the pouring rain the children stood for a photo with their rafts of the steps

Ready for a colourful junk model raft race

Then they all lined up waiting for “Ready steady Go” before dropping them into the water.

Launching colourful junk model rafts for a race

The rain after weeks of dry was just what was needed to give the rafts a bit of speed in the water. I had Guy waiting to wade downstream after them and ensure none were grounded or caught up in the banks along the way.

Raft Race in progress


Everyone’s a Winner

Farmer Nick was on hand with fishing nets to catch the rafts and declare the winners for me. I had certificates ready laminated not just for 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the race but also for team work, best technical raft and most creative. This ensured a good spread of success for all. 

finishing line on colourful junk model raft race

It was certainly a soggy affair, but everyone enjoyed our junk model raft race and it was a wonderful way to enjoy a little outdoor fun on a wet afternoon.

Tips for creating your own Junk Model Raft Race

Save up all your plastic bottles including the lids.
Keep back a few empty spray bottles for the paint. Water the paint 50 /50 with water so it sprays through the bottle. Use clear bottles like window cleaner so the colour is obvious. 
The pound shops do some great £1 coloured sticky tape that is easy to share out a roll per team.
A great activity on a local river but make sure you have a safe place for wading or nets to catch the rafts.
Medals or certificates for aspects other than winning, like team work and creativity, reward different skill sets.
Be vigalent at all times around water and never race after a storm or when the river is running to fast to safely enter.
Identification DIY flags or nature are a fun way to decorate the rafts.
Remember the heaviest side will end up face down so weight your raft wisely to float upright. We used sand and gravel.


Our fun Colourful Junk Model Raft Race

Country Kids linky  keep= Shank You Very Much  3 Little Buttons Confessions of a New Mummy