So here’s a nice thing to do on a Sunday.
Today we celebrated my father-in-law’s birthday by being outdoorsy. We drove to St Catherine’s Hill in Winchester, climbed up to the top, and flew a kite.
Incidentally, we picked this kite up from Aldi a few weeks ago. Best random find ever! We bought two – this one and a stunt kite.
It was good and windy at the top of the hill. Both the kids had fun running around, and in Elliot’s case, jumping in cow pats. Charming boy. I think, however, Ross and I were more enamoured with our kite than the kids were.
There is a labyrinth at the top of the hill as well, which the kids enjoyed.
After we’d had enough of flying kites and gazing down at the M3, we walked down the hill, along part of the Itchen Navigation path, back to the car and to a pub in Twyford for lunch.
Lovely Sunday was lovely. Back to school for my girl tomorrow. Hello, 6:30am starts, how I have missed you*
*this may not be true.
This morning we woke up to the pitter patter of raindrops on our bedroom window. Boo, we collectively thought, today we had planned to go for a jaunty hike somewhere. Ross got up with the kids, and I rolled over and promptly went back to sleep, toasty warm.
When I was woken up an hour or so later, by my small son clambering over my face no less, the rain had stopped. All was not lost, and the idea of a jaunty hike was revisited.
“Let’s go to Moors Valley” Ross exclaimed. Capital idea, chum! Two hours later we were zipping up the M27, walking boots donned.
Moors Valley is possibly my new favourite place to go. It’s situated just outside Ringwood, and just inside Dorset, about a twenty-five minute drive from Southampton. There is no admission fee to the country park itself, but parking is charged, although very affordable – we were there for three hours, and spent £5.40.
Today we walked the play trail – a mile long trail through beautiful pine woodland.
Day three of half term and we are having fun. On Monday we went to our usual playgroup, which was heaving. It was one of the few groups still running in the school holidays and let me tell you, people took full advantage. It was loud and boisterous and Elliot especially had oodles of fun. I love that playgroup because a few of my friends go, so it always feels so welcoming and inclusive. I’ll be sad when Elliot starts school, mainly because I will have no reason to go there anymore.
Anyway, yesterday we went to Manor Farm, and if you are Hampshire Hogs like us, then you really must visit. And even if you are not quite Hampshire Hogs, if you have inquisitive little ones, then they’ll love it
This morning, I was just getting ready to get Roo to school. I’d made her lunch, she’d snarfed down some toast with chocolate spread, her teeth had been brushed and her uniform was on. I looked at my phone to find a text from the school:
SCHOOL WILL BE CLOSED TODAY. PRE-SCHOOL AND THE JUNIOR SCHOOL WILL ALSO BE CLOSED.
Oh, the possibilities. Half an hour later we got a message from our friends from up the road, asking if we wanted to go over for snow fun and warm drinks.
Yes please! These friends are FUN! We always enjoy ourselves when we spend time together – we even went on holiday together in the summer. So midmorning, we bundled ourselves up, and trundled up to their house, chucking the odd snowball at each other on the way. Roo found a patch of fresh, untouched snow far too tempting not to lie down in and make a snow angel.
Nice chatter, nice biscuits and chai latte. Just what is needed before heading out for a snowball fight.
I don’t think this post could have come at a better time, given all the gold medals we’ve just won at the Olympics for cycling. The Vendée region of France is very popular for cycling, and has a lot of dedicated cycle paths and routes.
We decided to hire bikes whilst we were on holiday and check some of them out, and made a little video about it.
Even though it was a damp day and spitting with warm summer rain, we got a decent few hours riding in, stopped for a picnic lunch in the forest before bundling our sleepy toddler back in the trailer and heading back to the Siblu village.
We are no Pendleton and Wiggins (though Ross is a very keen cyclist), but it was a very fun day out, and I’ve come back to the UK on the lookout for a bike of my own. How is that for inspiration?
Today we drove out to Winchester for a yomp with our friend Chix, and the kids, at Farley Mount. I had never been before and Ross kept harping on about a horse that fell into a chalk pit, so I didn’t really know what to expect. But it turns out Farley Mount is a GREAT place to take adventurous children.