Life in general and holidays seem to have got in the way these past few weeks and I’ve struggled to find time to put pen to paper so to speak. Hopefully April will see calmer times and a much needed catch up as I have so many photos from our adventures
A couple of weeks ago we visited Longdown Activity Farm for Mother’s Day and took my mum along with us. We last visited on Father’s Day in June last year, and it’s quite nice as parents go free depending on which day you’re celebrating. Mum hasn’t been to any farms or zoos with us since having J, and it’s been years since she last visited Longdown with me as a little girl so it was nice to experience it with her and for her to reminisce from when I was young
As soon as we entered the farm we went straight to the hens and see if there were any eggs available for collection. J found one in the access holes and was pleased as punch, taking it straight to the farm shop and receiving a big sticker. She was a little sad to see it go, but I promised her that at the end of the visit we would buy some eggs to take home, hopefully including the one she had found
The next stop was the calf shed and bottle feeding the calves. J got straight into it and the calves greedily gupled on the bottle as she was holding it. Mum and I helped her as she fed the calf and the hubster looked on, snapping away at the camera. I mentioned a while ago that there’s so few photos of mum and I, and even fewer of mum, J and I, so this was a perfect opportunity to rectify that and I find that I struggle being on the other side of the camera but he did a pretty good job!
J then had a play in the barn as we watched on. She fell quite a way off the makeshift hay sides and onto the floor, but it was so soft that she got straight back up and carried on playing. It was a real difference seeing her this time round, she was much more fearless and happily ran off in the play areas leaving us to observe. We had a play on the diggers, the children’s tractors and even the outdoor table tennis which we were totally useless at before heading over to the next activity
One of my favourite encounters last time was seeing the baby chicks and rabbits. J spent a good deal of time telling the baby chick off and telling it not to eat her which made us laugh a lot, so I was intrigued to see how she would cope this time around. She was great, and even held two chicks before moving onto the other animals to pet them. It was lovely to sit and snuggle with her and talk about where they had come from and what they would look like when they weren’t baby chicks any more
We fed goats and the pigs along the way around the farm and the goats made J laugh as she tried desperately to hold onto the food container and they ate as fast as they could. Mum joined us with another tray shortly after J’s tray had finished so she had a double helping and she kept telling us they were really greedy goats!
I’m not sure why but J often tells us her favourite animals are pigs even though she’s seen very few of them and she stood there watching them as we queued for feed and then fed them through the feeding shoots. We even saw a few piglets which were very cute and snuggled into their mum. I love seeing Spring appear and watching all of the animals with their newborns and it’s nice to be able to show J that they are small once, and not the ‘normal size’ she sees
As with every place we visit, if there’s a pony ride she will ask to do it and we will happily oblige. This time round was like no other, we queued for a little bit and she went on the pony, sitting up straight and riding proudly as I snapped away. I keep saying that horse riding lessons are on the cards and she keeps cementing that idea, it’s just finding the right age to do it. I expect once she starts school we will start seriously thinking about it but I’m not too sure when is best having never been horse riding before
Because we had such awful weather in February, much of the outdoor play area and tractor rides had been closed and cancelled because of the waterlogged fields. It didn’t put a dampener on the day and instead we decided to let J play on the indoor soft play while we queued for her to have her face painted. It’s not something we normally do because the queues are always huge (this time was like no other!) but mum used to do face painting and had promised J that she would have it done as a special treat on the visit. As grandparents tend to do, mum showered her with love, attention and gifts throughout the day and it was really nice to watch
The face painter did a great job and J had a beautiful pink tiger face to finish the day’s adventure. We went straight to mums house for a nice coffee and a lovely roast lamb dinner to finish the day off with dad who hadn’t been able to make the farm due to work commitments. It was really nice to finish the outing off as a big family of 5 and we really mustn’t leave the adventures with my parents for so long next time.
A much overdue linkup with Fiona at Coombe Mill for the great Country Kids linky
And Whatever the Weather