We’ve had our National Trust passes for a couple of years now but it’s been a while since we went to Mottisfont. I offered J a variety of things to do on the first day of her school holidays and she proudly told me that she hadn’t been to Mottisfont for a long time, and wanted to go thereI love that they do interactive activities for children in the school holidays, and even before J started school we used to visit during the trails. I find they’re a great blend between fun, outdoors activity, education and craft at the end, and don’t mind paying a pound towards it
I’m a big map reader, but I let J take the reins on this occasion and she proudly marked off each number as we got to the stand, helping me to read the information on the board and then following the activity request it asked. This included collecting leaves, identifying leaves, drawing autumn items and so on. She really enjoyed taking charge, running around the fields and showing me where each stand was, before rushing off to the next one
It was a shorter trail compared to previous years, and we had completed it in less than an hour, but we then spent a good half hour at the craft table which is one of J’s favourite parts of the trails. I sat patiently while she stuck leaves onto her patchwork booklet, stamped it and coloured it in, offering to help when she needed me to
As we were heading round the trail I promised her a trip to the mud garden and then the water play area once we had finished, and although it was very wet when we were there I was surprised to see so many people – gone are our days of visiting with few and far between visitors!
The water play area was a massive hit, and all the children clubbed together making water dams and then letting the water through each level. I always find it amazing how kids naturally come together and work as a team, talking amongst themselves and including outsiders to get to the end result. I had forgotten to bring a spare change of clothes but told J she could get as wet as she wanted and that I’d strip her off at the car
It was lovely to be back at Mottisfont and to do the trail, each time we go it offers something new for J, and I won’t lie – I like the odd trail and map! We won’t leave it so long next time!