The Magic Faraway Tree

Posted on June 10th, 2016 - Fiona

Enid Blyton’s The Magic Faraway Tree

I do like to keep the themes fresh and the ideas moving forward on our farm activity hour. This week we had a predominance of girls staying with us and a wide age range, with a couple of families who were allowed holiday leave from school.  It can be challenging to find something that appeals across the age groups but my plans this week suited everyone.    

Discovering the Magic Faraway Tree along the Welly Walk at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays. Cornwall

It is a while since we have had an activity hour session using the Coombe Mill Welly Walk. There is a tree at the far end which is home to our rope swing. I was fairly certain no one had ventured down during the week. It was whilst counting lambs on my morning farm checks and glancing down the welly walk that an idea came to me. The tree at the end reminded me of one of my favourite childhood books, The Magic Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton. Suddenly I could picture fairies, tree people and adventure all around. I had Farmer Nick slice up a branch into sections for us to make fairy doors.  The children decorated their doors with paint and pens, adding their own interpretations on the classic story. I was surprised to find that one 9 year old had even read the book; it is lovely to think that this story is still going strong, generations after it was written. With doors painted, we created magic pebbles to lie around the base of the tree and loaded them all onto trays.

 

Painting fairy doors and pebbles for the Coombe Mill Magic Faraway Tree

 

Handing out welly walk sheets we set off to complete the challenges. There were leaves to identify, waterfalls to find, fords to leap over and gates to open without allowing any sheep to escape! The children had no problem spotting the signs showing them which way to go. It was really rather pretty with the bracken and bluebells all fighting for space along the banks; parents were shocked that they had not discovered this area of the farm all week.

 

Exploring the Coombe Mill Welly Walk in search of the Magic Faraway Tree

 

Our bamboo tunnel captured their imagination as they all ran through.

Running through the bamboo tunnel on the welly walk this afternoon. #kids #kidsfun #nature #naturetrail #wellywalk #holiday #cornwall #activekids #challenge #adventure #wildchild #wild #playtime #woodland #fun

A video posted by Coombe Mill (@coombemill) on

 

On the other side of the tunnel, in a clearing,  stood the Magic Faraway Tree.  We added our fairy doors to the trunk and laid the pebbles around the base.

 

Finding the Magic Faraway Tree at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays. Cornwall

 

Each child then took a ball of clay to make a tree face, embellishing the facial features with nature.

 

Adding nature faces on the Magic Faraway Tree at Coombe Mill Farm Holidays

 

There were some great designs and the finished effect was quite impressive with the tree folk and fairy doors up the tree trunk. It was time to embrace The Magic Faraway Tree and share in its fun with a turn on the rope swing. It was safe to say that this was a huge hit from youngest to oldest.

 

Playing on the rope swing under the Magic Faraway Tree at Coombe Mill

It felt a shame to break the fun and take everyone back for the train. As all my own children were away on various adventures from Scouts to Ballet with Farmer Nick, it was me running the train. We did an extra lap for good luck before rounding off the evening on the pirate ship.

 

Enjoying the Coombe Mill Railway and Play Areas at the Farm

 

I think there were tired children going to bed that night; each with their own dreams of The Magic Faraway Tree.  

 

 

 

Joining in with Country Kids

For the link up and Country Kids rules please click here

 

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall ethannevelyn


Bush Crafts and Bear Grylls Survival Skills

Posted on June 3rd, 2016 - Fiona

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

There is nothing I like more than to see my kids being kids. Yet at age 12 upwards I am seeing their childish side less frequently. However come the holidays, with older children staying on holiday and time away from the social pressures of school, my children learn to be the kids they are once again. This is when they remember  to enjoy the farm and test out their bush crafts,  creating Bear Grylls style survival challenges.

Guy led the initiative this half term when he met up with a good friend who stayed last year. The boys soon picked up where they left off reminiscing over camping and fishing adventures and began planning this year’s challenge. Others soon joined in with a plan to build a survival camp and be like Bear Grylls on the Coombe Mill river island. The numbers swelled as boys of all ages began chopping firewood and making camp, swinging across the river and clambering up and down to the island.

Making a Bear Grylls style camp on river island at Coombe Mill Family Farm Cottage holidays. Cornwall

Parents all joined forces over a BBQ on the lawns keeping a distant watch over the boys whilst enjoying some adult time. The boys refused to leave their island preferring to heat their own beans on their campfire.  

Supper at river island Bear Grylls camp with parents watching over at Coombe Mill Holidays. Cornwall

As night fell, there was just Guy and his friend left bunking down for the night. However not long after 11pm I heard the door open and Guy come in. The ground was soggy and the fire had gone out. Suddenly, bush crafts and Bear Grylls didn’t feel such fun!

Kids sleeping wild on river island at Coombe Mill Holidays. Cornwall

By day two, they were rethinking the camp and set to work chopping branches to form a proper structure and covering it with foliage. When their camp was finished they added two camp beds and this time it looked like something they could actually spend the night in.

A real survival camp Bear Grylls style on river island at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays

There were plenty of admirers and helpers coming and going.  Even my Screenager Theo came out to help and chopped a branch to form a bridge with a rope swing of dubious quality but added a new dimension to accessing the island for the brave.

Making a rope bridge to river island at Coombe Mill Farm Holidays. Cornwall

For me it was wonderful to see them out enjoying nature, using their imagination and testing some basic survival skills. I left the front door open just in case they came home again, but they stayed the whole night. By the time I went out to see them in the morning the fire was going and they were cooking breakfast. 

Cooking breakfast after a night of wild camping at Coombe Mill. #beargrylls #wildchild #camp #camping #holiday #kids #woods #woodland #bushcraft #campfire #cooking #bbq #breakfast

A photo posted by Coombe Mill (@coombemill) on

Bear Grylls watch out, I have some boys after your job!

 

Joining in with Country Kids

I’d love you to come and share your outdoor fun with me here on the linky. All posts are welcome from playing in the garden to days out and Bear Grylls style challenges like my kids this week. All I ask is that the post is predominantly outside, away from screens enjoying some fresh air. I’d be delighted if you would take my badge or link back here and please remember to check out some of the other posts, it might just be the inspiration for your next adventure.

Country Kids is around in these 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

Follow Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays’s board Country Kids  from Coombe Mill on Pinterest.

Join the Google Plus community page for Country Kids and add #CountryKids to your tag elsewhere for a +1 from me

Share your posts on Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids for a like or a re-tweet

Two chances to Win with Rockfish & Country Kids

Win a pair of wellies from Rockfish Monthly

A Chance To Win with Rockfish Wellies from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall, England, UK. 

I am delighted to announce that Rockfish have joined with Coombe Mill to sponsor the Country Kids link up. Rockfish are a local Cornish company specializing in stylish 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. The wellies we offer may change each month but are always high quality, comfy and stylish so keep an eye out here on Country Kids to see which designs are up each month.

Congratulations to Sally from Teddy Bears and Cardigans who is my May Winner of the Rockfish wellies with a lovely post from Dewstow about Fairies and Grottoes

Sally you can choose any welly form the online range. For more more information on the Rockfish Wellies on offer with us and terms and conditions to win see here

A few of my favourites in with a chance of the June Rockfish Boots:

I never knew there were Cable Cars in London, MummyShire shares her experience of a family trip on them and now it's on my list too when we next visit. 

Running a half marathon through beautiful vineyards with family support looks like a wonderful weekend away for Catching the Magic 

Priory Maze and Gardens looks like a great family day out as discovered by Him, Me and Three

Island Living has been discovering the beauty of Norway, the photos of snow capped mountains are stunning. 

Win 25% off weekly with Rockfish

On top of the monthly free wellies, Rockfish has kindly offered everyone who enters #CountryKids this week a chance to win 25% off at their online store, a little extra incentive for some affordable outdoor fun.

25% Off Rockfish Wellies Week 18

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Ahoy the Pirates are Sailing

Posted on May 27th, 2016 - Fiona

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

I do like to be resourceful and rethink our activities on the farm using nature and whatever I have to hand. This week I had an inspired idea to reuse my box of treasures from a previous activity hour based on pirates, combined with the Maypole and cardboard boat from the previous two weeks. We would have a pirate activity hour with a colourful pirate boat. It was a great way to reuse things from before and create a whole new afternoon of dun on the farm.

Pirate ship and Map at Coombe Mill Family cottage Holidays. Cornwall

 

Creating Pirates

We began by raiding the dressing up box; we had a mix of traditional pirate gear and some pretty fairy pirates. All were welcome. Now all good pirates need an eye patch and cutlass and this was our first task to begin our adventure.

If you are interested in making these I am making downloadable printouts for my upcycling linky #Trash2Treasure which will be published on 6th June.

Making pirate crafts at Coombe Mill Family Farm cottage Holidays. Conrwall

With cutlasses and eye patches ready, I taped a huge chunk of wallpaper to the pathway adding dollops of pant. The children were tasked to turn this into a giant treasure map. They eagerly worked as a team painting islands, palm trees, a big sun and of course some red crosses to mark where the treasure would be. Meanwhile Guy had run off to the pirate play boat with my box of treasure to hide.   

Making a Giant Treasure Map and Studing the Treasure Box at coombe Mill Family Farm Cottage Holidays. Cornwall

The children declared the map complete and we were ready to make our pirates a ship. With a hole in the centre for the mast (previously a maypole), the children gathered sticks for oars while I tied the maypole ribbons to the handles of the boat to act as rigging. We laid the map ahead of the boat and the pirates climbed aboard. Taking up the oars we sang:

“Row row row your boat

Gently across the sea,

If you see a pirate coming

Don’t forget to scream! “Ahhhh”

A new take on row row row your boat for our Coombe Mill pirates! #kids #fun #imagination #trash2treassure #dressingup #holidayfun #cornwall

A video posted by Coombe Mill (@coombemill) on

 

Arriving on our treasure island, the pirates disembarked and quickly picked up my clue for the hidden treasure on the pirate play boat.

 

Pirates enjoying a Treasure Hunt at the Coombe Mill Family cottage holidays Pirate Ship

Pirate treasure was swapped for sweets and a Coombe Mill badge, and my little pirates returned home via the Coombe Mill Train. Still in imaginary mode, they waved their cutlasses and shouted shanty anthems as the train departed.

Pirate Train at Coombe Mill Family Farm Cottage Holidays. Cornwall

 

It was a wonderful activity hour with plenty of imagination and a great use of many of the resources I had gathered over the last few weeks.

 

Joining in with Country Kids

I’d love you to come and share your outdoor fun with me here on the linky. All posts are welcome from playing in the garden to days out. All I ask is that the post is predominantly outside, away from screens and enjoying some fresh air. I’d be delighted if you would take my badge or link back here and please remember to check out some of the other posts, it might just be the inspiration for your next adventure.

Country Kids is around in these 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

Follow Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays’s board Country Kids  from Coombe Mill on Pinterest.

Join the Google Plus community page for Country Kids and add #CountryKids to your tag elsewhere for a +1 from me

Share your posts on Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids for a like or a re-tweet

Two chances to Win with Rockfish & Country Kids

Win a pair of wellies from Rockfish Monthly

A Chance To Win with Rockfish Wellies from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall, England, UK. 

I am delighted to announce that Rockfish have joined with Coombe Mill to sponsor the Country Kids link up. Rockfish are a local Cornish company specializing in stylish 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. The wellies we offer may change each month but are always high quality, comfy and stylish so keep an eye out here on Country Kids to see which designs are up each month.

My May winner will be able to choose any welly form the online range. For more more information on the Rockfish Wellies on offer with us and terms and conditions to win see here

A few of my favourites in with a chance of the May Rockfish Boots:

 

It's festival and fair time of year. there are some lovely country fairs around that make a lovely family day out. I really enjoyed this one from Would Like to Be

I can never resisit a good beach. This remote beach in Pembrookshire was perfect for a day out for Dairy of the Evans Crittens

From tree top walk to science fun Westonbirt Arboretum has it all for Stopping at Two

Fairies and Grottoes are close to my heart, Teddy bears and Cardigans found them all at Dewstow Gardens

Win 25% off weekly with Rockfish

On top of the monthly free wellies, Rockfish has kindly offered everyone who enters #CountryKids this week a chance to win 25% off at their online store, a little extra incentive for some affordable outdoor fun

25% Off Rockfish Wellies Week 17

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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How to make a Cardboard Rowing Boat

Posted on May 20th, 2016 - Fiona

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

There is no such thing as rubbish in my world. We had just taken delivery of a new running machine for the gyand while I helped Farmer Nick and the teens unpack it, I was already thinking of uses for the cardboard box it came in. It didn’t take me long to come up with a cardboard rowing boat and fairground games idea for my enormous box. Stimulating imagination and creativity in young children is a great way for them to develop and learn.

Practising Counting

My little group was age 2 to 4 and I wanted to weave some basic number work into our cardboard rowing boat adventure. I knew I had to keep things fast paced with little ones and took every opportunity to practise counting during the hour.

We began with a counting book in the games room, where the children counted, pointed and answered questions.

From here we moved on to one of our Early Years farm counting sheets from our website. The children needed a little help with the higher numbers but were great on the 1 – 5 range, matching farm pictures and numbers.

Reading and counting games to start Activity Hour at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall

Let’s make a cardboard rowing boat

There is only so much number work little minds can take on board, so we broadened our learning with imagination and role play. It was time to brave the drizzle outside as each child was tasked with finding two sticks to use as oars in our boat.

Stick hunting for Activity Hour at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall

We used a pair of scissors to make holes in the cardboard just big enough to push a third of the stick through to form the oars.  Then the children climbed aboard and to a chorus of “row row row your boat” we set off to the fair in our cardboard rowing boat.  

How to make a cardboard rowing boat. Fun at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall

At the fairground

The fairground had a game of skittles all waiting for the children. The other half of my cardboard box became the skittle alley with toilet roll inners as skittles and a soft ball to roll. The children soon got the hang of the game, taking it in turns to count how many they knocked down. With support and cheers from parents and help with counting, each was keen to improve their score.

We moved from knocking down skittles to throwing a ping pong ball into cups, after a week of farm fun and with imaginations taking hold, this soon turned into throwing the toy animals into the cups and I was delighted to watch them embellish the game.

Fairground games at coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall

 

Finally, the rain cleared and we were able to go back outside. The next challenge I’d set was a nature hunt to make a paint collage. The children searched around for twigs, leaves and flowers to make prints with while I set up a sheet of wallpaper with paints under the veranda of the games room.   

 

nature hunt

 

I started them off with a quick leaf print and then left them to explore with paint and nature, sticking on any pieces they wanted. I was thrilled with the enthusiasm of the children for their task, each of them doing something and progressing from nature prints to hand prints, watching colours mix and the collage grow.  

Making a nature art collage

When everyone was finished, I left the artwork to dry and hung it up on the games room wall, while Guy led the children over to the front lawn for the last train ride of the week.

Guy running the train at coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall. UK

It was an involved challenge for my little ones this week but they coped really well. I even had one ask his Mum after if they could make a cardboard rowing boat at home. I’ve saved the boat as I have another idea forming in my mind for next time.

Joining in with Country Kids

I’d love you to come and share your outdoor fun with me here on the linky. All posts are welcome from playing in the garden to days out. All I ask is that the post is predominantly outside, away from screens enjoying some fresh air. I’d be delighted if you would take my badge or link back here and please remember to check out some of the other posts, it might just be the inspiration for your next adventure.

Country Kids is around in these 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

Follow Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays’s board Country Kids  from Coombe Mill on Pinterest.

Join the Google Plus community page for Country Kids and add #CountryKids to your tag elsewhere for a +1 from me

Share your posts on Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids for a like or a re-tweet

Two chances to Win with Rockfish & Country Kids

Win a pair of wellies from Rockfish Monthly

A Chance To Win with Rockfish Wellies from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall, England, UK. 

I am delighted to announce that Rockfish have joined with Coombe Mill to sponsor the Country Kids link up. Rockfish are a local Cornish company specializing in stylish 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. The wellies we offer may change each month but are always high quality, comfy and stylish so keep an eye out here on Country Kids to see which designs are up each month.

My May winner will be able to choose any welly form the online range. For more more information on the Rockfish Wellies on offer with us and terms and conditions to win see here

A few of my favourites in with a chance of the May Rockfish Boots:

It isn't often I favour an urban post on Country Kids but this look at New York had plenty of walking, outdoor fun and sights galore from Mum turned Mom

A little imagination can turn beautiful gardens into magical fairy gardens as Little hearts big Love did with her girls

Mommy's Little Princesses found the perfect relaxing park for a family outing with her girls 

Win 25% off weekly with Rockfish

On top of the monthly free wellies, Rockfish has kindly offered everyone who enters #CountryKids this week a chance to win 25% off at their online store, a little extra incentive for some affordable outdoor fun

25% Off Rockfish Wellies Week 16

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Maypole Dancing and a Fairy Party

Posted on May 13th, 2016 - Fiona

Country Kids from Coombe Mill

Mayday is quite a British Tradition from Maypole dancing to Morris dancers. Here in Cornwall Padstow really go to town for May Day and I’ve taken the kids to enjoy the festivities in the past.  Back at the farm I really wanted to capture a little of the May Day party atmosphere in our Activity Hour.  

Creating Maypole Dancing and a Fairy Party

Maypole dancing round a windbreak!

My biggest challenge was in making a Maypole. I hunted high and low before spotting the perfect solution whilst moving our boot room; an old Windbreak that was about to be thrown out. I took the best of the poles and Farmer Nick knocked it into the ground for me. A little coloured floristry ribbon and some Duck Tape Colours and my party theme was taking shape.

 

DIY Maypole for some party fun at coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

We began the session with a gorgeous Orchard Toys jigsaw. I love this puzzle as it is of a woodland party and full of imagination and make believe. We made the puzzle and talked about all the fun going on at the party. I explained that we were going to have our own party and set one up for the fairies in the Fairy gardens too.

Making the Orchard Toys Woodland Party Jigsaw at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Every party needs cake and the children helped me fill the cupcakes and decorate them. They would have just enough time to cook while we put on our dancing shoes.

Making Cupcakes at Coombe MillFamily Farm Holidays Cornwall

Guy and Clio came to help me and organised the music for our dancing. I have to say Maypole dancing is harder than I remembered and it took all of the parents helping me to get a good pattern going round our maypole. It’s fair to say we were far from perfect but it was a lot of fun and took me back to my school days.

Maypole Dancing at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

By the time we stopped the cakes we cooling and everyone was ready for a party snack. Refuelled we set about making mini Maypoles from sticks and floristry ribbon for the fairy gardens along with painted bunting.

Making fairy maypoles at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

There was just enough time for the children to choose their location for the fairy maypole dancing party and add their decorations.

Creating a fairy party at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

While the children enjoyed a ride on the train with Guy I hung back just long enough to see the first gnomes tentatively stepping over to try their hand at Maypole dancing!

Gnomes going to the fairy party while the children board the Coombe Mill Railway at Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

A great afternoon of fun and games here on the farm with plenty of fresh air and sunshine all the way.

Joining in with Country Kids

I’d love you to come and share your outdoor fun with me here on the linky. All posts are welcome from playing in the garden to days out. All I ask is that the post is predominantly outside, away from screens and enjoying some fresh air. I’d be delighted if you would take my badge or link back here and please remember to check out some of the other posts, it might just be the inspiration for your next adventure.

Country Kids is around in these 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

Follow Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays’s board Country Kids  from Coombe Mill on Pinterest.

Join the Google Plus community page for Country Kids and add #CountryKids to your tag elsewhere for a +1 from me

Share your posts on Instagram and Twitter with #CountryKids for a like or a re-tweet

Two chances to Win with Rockfish & Country Kids

Win a pair of wellies from Rockfish Monthly

A Chance To Win with Rockfish Wellies from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays, Cornwall, England, UK. 

I am delighted to announce that Rockfish have joined with Coombe Mill to sponsor the Country Kids link up. Rockfish are a local Cornish company specializing in stylish 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. The wellies we offer may change each month but are always high quality, comfy and stylish so keep an eye out here on Country Kids to see which designs are up each month.

My May winner will be able to choose any welly form the online range. For more more information on the Rockfish Wellies on offer with us and terms and conditions to win see here

A few of my favourites in with a chance of the May Rockfish Boots:

Exploring the South West Coast reveals some stunning tucked away beaches. Domestique found a beautiful spot at Sandymouth.

 Craft Invaders shares some fascinating facts while foraging for edible plants in the countryside.

A few puddles made fun by Ups & downs, smiles & frowns

I can't get enough of the lovely bluebell posts at the moment. This one from Walking Talking Polly Pocket is beautiful.

Win 25% off weekly with Rockfish

On top of the monthly free wellies, Rockfish has kindly offered everyone who enters #CountryKids this week a chance to win 25% off at their online store, a little extra incentive for some affordable outdoor fun

25% Off Rockfish Wellies Week 15

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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