This taken was taken at Afon Argoed, which is a brilliant bike route in Wales. We did it twice that day and, with a 500 metre uphill at the start, I was very happy to see the mini bus at the end!
Now that the winter is well and truly here, I’ve been enjoying looking back over our lovely, (and sunny!), pictures taken during our mini-break to France, over the October half term. We visit France regularly, and we’ve always loved it. We’re very lucky that my husband speaks French. This makes it easier for us to get by and do things, especially as I get tongue-tied when attempting to speak French!
My husband found us a lovely little cottage located on a working farm, just an hour outside of Calais. It’s a beautiful, old-fashioned cottage set within a very quiet village, and in stunning surroundings. It was idyllic, and perfect for a relaxing break away.
We explored our new home and found three very friendly (but very bouncy) dogs who became a complete favourite of my daughter. They would come running over every morning, and my daughter would love leaning out of her window to see them on guard. While we were wandering around, one day, the farmer ushered us into one of the big sheds. He showed us one of the baby calves that had been born that very night! It turned out that he was a twin, and Mummy-cow was delivering another calf. My daughter was so amazed and, if she could, she would’ve stayed all day and helped the farmer deliver the other baby!
We had such a wonderful time. If you’re in France on a Sunday, you have to visit a local street-market to buy some tasty treats and, of course, a roasted chicken. This is a “must-have” (for meat lovers) when visiting a traditional French market. The chickens are cooked on a rotating spit with open flames, and the scent hits you as soon as you enter the market. It’s real treat for us, and a change from the usual “traditional” Sunday roast. We enjoy a juicy roasted chicken, along with a selection of fresh salads. There are fresh cheeses, crusty baguettes, the most delicious cakes and pastries that you could imagine, and the variety of vegetables and fresh fruit is always amazing. I love this way of shopping.
My daughter enjoying her favourite French meal of Moules and frites!
One of my favourite days was when we went for a bike ride. The weather was beautiful and, after changing two flat tyres, we were off. Riding through the villages, looking at the little farms and enjoying the flat paths was amazing. Luckily, we encountered no steep hills and, after a short stop in a little cafe for cold drinks and ice cream, we gained some much-needed energy before heading back home. In total, we rode just over 10k.
My husband was amazed, as he hadn’t been on bike since he was a young boy. We all agreed that French bike-saddles were a LOT less comfortable than our lovely gel seats at home! The irony is that we rode through the village of Agincourt, and my husband was convinced that his sore “derriere” was some kind of French revenge for the famous battle which, incidentally, took place exactly 599 years to the very day that we visited!!
We also spent a wonderful day at a nearby aquarium in Boulogne. My daughter wants to be a marine biologist when she’s older. She loves visiting aquarium, and this one is truly amazing. It’s probably one of the best I’ve ever been to. There are thousands of different species of marine life to look at, all set in huge tanks replicating their natural environment. There are also lots of environmental projects to show children how we can protect endangered species, great talks and films shown throughout the day explaining about things like the impact of pollution on the marine environment, as well as responsible fishing and so much more. (It’s also a great chance for weary parents to rest their feet!). The main attraction for my daughter is the shark tank. She loves to sit and watch, mesmerized, as these huge creatures glide gracefully and silently through the water. The aquarium is located on the beach, and so we were able to have our picnic lunch overlooking the sunny scenery, followed by-play on the sand. It was hard to believe that it was October, with such wonderful weather.
We had such a lovely, relaxing time and staying on a farm was so interesting for my daughter. There was so much to see and explore, so it was a perfect venue for an outdoor-loving family. It may seem like a lot of work, what with biking, walking etc. There wasn’t much “sitting by a pool in the sun, sipping cocktails” but, for our family, this was activity-filled, fun-packed heaven.
It’s our type of holiday, and we can’t wait to plan our next family adventure abroad!
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I have just come back from a Duke of Edinburgh training weekend and this was the way I had to walk each morning to where the conference was running.
Plas y Brenin is an outdoor adventure centre set deep in the heart of Snowdonia. One of the most beautiful places I have ever been to and I don’t think this photo shows the true and full beauty of the area.
I couldn’t have asked for a more breath-taking place to stay.
Taken at Sgwd yr Eira waterfalls in the Brecon Beacons. This amazing waterfall is very special as you can walk behind the waterfalls to continue on your walk. We had to suit up head to toe in our waterproofs and we still got soaked!
A beautiful part of the country and makes me feel very lucky that I live in Wales.
This was linked in with My Sunday Photo:
Hallowe’en saw us enjoying a wonderful party, with traditional celebrations, at Friends of Pentre Gardens. We held our usual arts and crafts in the hall, and children could make crafty bits to decorate their homes ready for Hallowe’en, and also make some costumes with Hallowe’en inspired materials, like foam grave stones, flying bats with teeth made from plastic forks, fabulous orange pumpkins, and white lace materials used for capes and corpse-brides!
The start of our spooky Tomb Stones!
In the outside area, we held all the messy (and very fun) traditional party games. The children had so much fun putting their faces into flour attempting to get their tasty treat, also apple bobbing, trays where hands (and sometimes faces) were plunged into gooey stuff, in order to get a sweet. There was also polo-sucking, eating cream crackers in one minute, and my favourite was the Mummy wrapping game.
This was a team game where someone must stand still and be covered (head to toe) in toilet tissue to be created into a Hallowe’en Mummy! These were such wonderful and messy activities, seeing all ages and abilities working together to, ultimately, just have lots of fun.
What I love about this community playscheme, is that we see a lot of parents staying to play with their children. This is lovely to see, and that makes the project so successful within the community. It’s wonderful to see the interaction between the parents, and it’s always great to see parents crawling on the floor, hunting through the craft materials, and making creations for themselves.
Here’s looking forward to the Christmas party!
Is there anything better for an outdoor worker than sitting in a warm mini bus in the beautiful Brecon countryside, enjoying a flask full of freshly homemade Cawl made by a lovely husband.
A random photo to share…..yes, but this little sign on the back of a workman’s van made me laugh out loud! I found it very funny, gave us a smile before we went for a rainy walk and I wanted to share the humour.
I have always loved random surprises you see in a day if you keep your eyes peeled!
Its been a while since I have posted and I must admit I am really struggling with time on my blog at the moment. Currently I am desperately trying to finish my Level 3 in Forest School work, it’s been a huge task and lately I seem to typing away on the computer early in the morning and then grasping moments late at night when I come home from work, or some days I’m faced with a mountain of paperwork finishing an ecological impact mixed with holistic learning development. It’s slightly manic and I really cant wait to finish, a brilliant course but working full-time and being a mum makes any type of training hard!
Mix in being a part of the PTA for my daughters school, a Governor and also teaching Duke of Edinburgh one night a week and other things seem to be getting squashed to the back of the queue sadly.
Then I have the dilemma that I am an outdoor based blog. When the weekends come we try to get outside and make the most of our family time together. So does it make sense that my posts come when we have had family adventures and I really want to share a story?
It has aways been an aim of mine that we don’t get to involved with mobile phones, social media and computers, especially when its family time. Our summer was great this year as I made it a mission not to be the one behind the camera capturing every moment but missing the important ones. It worked and we had one of the most action packed adventurous holidays this year.
What I wanted to share is that I am still here, some weeks are more busy than others, we continue to have outdoor experiences and fun but like everything in life it’s about getting that balance. I know that when my Forest School training is over I have a lot more time to dedicate to my blog and do have a nice list of ideas that I would like to write about when I have more time.