Easter Holidays

A week in the Welsh countryside.

Exploring caves.
Riding bikes.
Eating hard-boiled eggs with salt on our walk up Table Mountain.
Writing our names using fallen Magnolia leaves.
Flying a kite with the wind so strong the rope broke.

The views.
Blue skies.


Cotswolds views

I'm so glad the end of February is in sight!  We spent a sunny (but utterly freezing) Sunday snowdrop hunting which is always an uplifting end-of-winter seasonal marker for me.

We stumbled across an amazing view - it was late afternoon and the sun was low and beautifully golden.  Despite the freezing wind there was an ice-cream van parked nearby and all of the children asked for ice-cream.  They are ice-cream in any kind of weather children (they weren't allowed!).


Cadbury Camp Autumn Walk


I loved the weather today - perfect blue skies, a crisp cold to the air and lovely autumn sunshine.  We normally visit Westonbirt for the amazing autumn colour but I was itching to go somewhere new and a friend recommended Cadbury Camp.  It's a short car drive outside Bristol and has some stunning views across countryside.  We had a fantastic time and it was great to add a new scenic walk to our local knowledge.

Here's E looking particularly happy (can't believe how long her hair is!)

And V just pootled about with her stick....

If any local readers can recommend favourite walks I'd love to hear them.


Farewell Summer 2013

We'll be into October next week and whilst we still have a hint of warm sun in the air I wanted to write a little bit about what we did this summer.  I didn't manage to post at all during July and August and we did so many fab things, I didn't want this summer to be missing.  So, our adventures included:
  • So many camping weekends (six consecutive weekends), including two 40th birthday weekends, a mini-festival at my friend's parents' farm and a camping weekend at my Uncle's house.
  • Giffords Circus with Ziggy's lovely Godmother Jessie
  • Ziggy learning to swim solo, after Z & E having two weeks of daily lessons.
  • A week's holiday in Cornwall including sailing, rock pooling, watching the red arrows and oohing and ahhhing over Granny and Poppa's seven Labrador puppies.
  • Visiting a beautiful lavender farm in Somerset.
  • Holding a 'celebration of nothing in particular but everything in general' party in a beautiful outdoor location for our Bristol friends.

Our main summer headline - MOVING HOUSE.  This was the year we finally sold our small flat and moved into a proper family house. No shared front door and our own garden.  An end to our student home and a lovely house to fix and paint and make our own.


Apple Picking

Hello, I'm back! It's been over three months since my last post but I've missed my blog and it's very nice to be back.  We finally moved house last month and it's wonderful - we have a garden, four bedrooms and a long list of house repairs, including a new roof, electrics and heating, gulp! I'll pop some pictures up when I've sorted out a few more boxes and made it a little more homely.

Today we spent the morning at our favourite orchard picking apples and pears. Along with the start of the term, returning home with a basket full of fruit is a reminder that summer is over and autumn is on it's way, no matter how warm the weather.

There is something utterly beautiful about being surrounded by fruit-laden trees on a crisp September morning.  Our day always ends with us racing up and down with the children taking it in turns to sit in the wheelbarrow, absolutely beside them selves with excitement.  Here are Z, V and E in action.


Party in the woods

We celebrated V's birthday with a party in the woods on a day filled with glorious sunshine.  This is V with all her party friends. She's in the white dress with striped leggings underneath (she insisted on wearing the leggings!)

Our woodland base was a beautiful oak framed barn which we strung up with colourful honeycomb decorations.

We built dens, ate cake, played chase and ended up coming home at tea-time having spent the whole day out.  

I made felt feather crowns for the children. There were jewels sewn on the front with hearts for the girls and squares for the boys.  Violet was running around so much I realised when I got home that I didn't have a picture of her on her own, but here are some of her gang.

I'll be doing a post on making the feather crowns a little later as they were very simple and beautiful and I'm a little proud of them!


Vintage Party Invitations {Violet is 3}

I've been meaning to write about Violet's party invitations since we made them two weeks ago.  It was her birthday on the 6th and we've had her party already - I'll write about what we got up to in a later post - today's about the invitations which regular readers will know I love making.

These are about the size of an average postcard and because we were celebrating by having a picnic in the woods I wanted to create something that reflected nature and outdoors.  I spent a evening on e-bay looking at vintage postcards and found the two pictures above which I couldn't choose between so I used them both.  I printed them on watercolour paper to give them a nice thickness and added gold foil print to highlight Violet's big event (I had to get this done by a proper printer-person).    I was a little nervous about having 15 children outdoors given the English weather but we had the most glorious day of sunshine.  I can't quite believe how lucky we were given that I'm writing this with rain and storm clouds outside.