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Christmas at Marwell

Dear mummy, what is it with the man in the red suit? Father Christmas, Santa Claus and Saint Nic. He’s the same person right? Today we visited Marwell Wildlife to see the man in question….I don’t know why and I’m too young to understand. All I know is that he passes judgement on little children, gives them presents if they have been good and rides a sleigh with flying reindeers! You can see why I’m a bit bemused.

Every year across the world people celebrate the birth of baby Jesus. This I understand. So today we are going to meet Father Christmas in his grotto at Marwell. I’m a bit nervous, he seems quite intimidating, being a world authority on present giving and naughty lists. I hope he can remember me helping mummy clean the floor after my breakfast this morning.

My mummy booked tickets to see him and the elves back in November, it can get booked up very quickly and Marwell Wildlife have been listed as one of the top places to see Father Christmas in the UK. So I’m expecting it to be good.

Christmas at MarwellWe are booked into the 2.45pm slot and the ‘Christmas Experience’ takes over an hour and a half to complete. It involves having a story read to us by Mrs Claus, being greeted by elves and having festive treats, crafting a large cracker for daddy and making Christmas decorations and seeing Father Christmas. Included in the price for £33 is a fabulous gift from Father Christmas, all crafting materials and a gift for inside the cracker, mulled wine, mince pies and a train journey to and from the gates of the zoo to Marwell House across the other side of the park.

Unfortunately when we arrive, late as usual, we miss the train so mummy sprints with the buggy and me across the park. By the time we reach Marwell House the other visitors from the train have arrived and are being guided by a festive elf. The costumes are fantastic and the place is beautifully decorated. My mummy downs a mulled wine *hiccup* which thankfully isn’t strong or she would have been on the floor and we chill out in the waiting room filled with twinkling lights ready to be greeted by Mrs Claus.

Marwell Wildlife ChristmasMrs Claus was very animated and friendly telling us the story of the Snowman. All the little children sit on the pillows on the floor while the adults are perched on stools looking on. There are not many of us I would say about 10 families max, which is nice and not over crowded. In the next room elves ‘Glitter’ and ‘Sparkle’ greet us with warm smiles and help us to crafting tables where we make Christmas crackers for loved ones. We get to choose the gifts for the centre of the crackers which are decent soft plush animals. My mummy picks a penguin for daddy and I decorate the cracker with pen scribbles and glitter. It has pre-printed zoo animals on and I do my best to colour them in for daddy. He’s not here as he’s at work, you see it’s a Monday and we’ve decided to go midweek so it wasn’t busy at the zoo.

Father Christmas at MarwellSuddenly children and their families are being called and disappearing into the next room one by one. The elves have a clipboard and are sending the visitors to see Father Christmas. When our name is called I’m a bit scared as mummy leads me through a winter maze of fake snow and ice. It’s very pretty and as we walk around the room we see, in the corner, Father Christmas sat in his big chair. My mummy tries to coax me over to meet him, but I’m not having any of it and make a dash for the door which I can see. He scares me. Mummy thinks he is very convincing and looks the part. Ever the professional, Father Christmas diffuses the situation with his soft voice and gentle smile. I stop long enough to stare him in the eyes and receive my gift. My mummy exchanges a couple of embarrassed words with him and pleasantries and we have our photo taken. I’m not so sure.

As we head out of the room, I notice my name on the ‘nice’ list. Phew! I think it could have gone very very wrong. I’d hate to think what he did with naughty children *GULP*

The second scare of the day was the large fluffy reindeer. At this stage I’m worn out and side step around him. While my mummy gives him a ‘high five’.

Christmas Train Ride at MarwellA quick pit stop to pay for my professional photo with Father Christmas (the only thing not included) at £7 and we’re off catching the train back to the entrance. This is the best bit and I smile and giggle all the way home. Wind in my hair and looking around at all the animals in the late afternoon sunshine. It’s definitely been an experience perfect for an older child my mummy reckons.

Give it a couple of years and we will be back when I’m less of a scaredy cat.

A beautiful setting and great attention to detail the elves were very friendly, we loved the crafting and the train ride, well worth the money. And as for my present that Father Christmas gave me? I sneakily opened it when I got home and it was perfect for me, a magnetic fishing rod game and a baby giraffe… To go with Jeremy (daddy giraffe) which I had got on my last trip to Marwell…what a spooky coincidence?!? Maybe there is something in this Father Christmas business. He knows all.

Bella x

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Winter Wonderland in London’s Hyde Park

Dear Mummy, thank you for being brave enough to venture into the big smoke and take me to London’s Winter Wonderland, I’ve had a really great time!

It’s not often that we brave London as a family, you see the thought of boarding a train full of commuters, packed in like sardines, sends shivers down your spine. Coupled with a noisy toddler *me*, a buggy, Christmas presents for my Aunty and a large rucksack with previsions for the day sounds like an accident waiting to happen!

Winter Wonderland London 1However, on this occasion, going up to London is a must visit. See, we’re heading up to meet your sister, my Aunty, and hang out with her and Grandma at Winter Wonderland. We brave the 45 minute commute up to London Waterloo and leave after rush hour so we don’t catch too many suits *business commuters* on a Monday morning as they are notorious for being grumpy and rude. However the train is still a bit full, so we scramble for a seat. Bright winter sunshine is filtering through the train windows and flashing against the trees, which is driving my mummy insane, it hurts her eyes, everything feels rushed and she’s slightly anxious at what lays ahead.

We all meet outside Waterloo train station and jump into a taxi, especially handy when you have a buggy, loads of bags and not a clue where you are going. Imagine using the packed tube or bus to get to Hyde Park, disastrous and stressful. Instead we opt for the easy way out and travel in style…it’s not everyday we head to the big city. I enjoy looking out of the windows and seeing the queues of traffic, pedestrians and big London landmarks such as Westminster, Big Ben and Buckingham Palace. I have great fun jumping up and down on mummy’s lap, much to the annoyance of the cabbie. However he was friendly enough and wished us a Merry Christmas as we left the black cab. It’s cold outside today, but we couldn’t have picked a better time to visit Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park.

In this bright sunshine it would have been nice to mosey on down to the parks and you can walk to Winter Wonderland from the following London Underground stations:
Green Park (Victoria, Jubilee and Piccadilly lines)
Victoria (Victoria, District & Circle lines and National Rail)
Marble Arch (Central line)
Edgware Road (Bakerloo line)
Bond Street (Central and Jubilee lines)

It’s just after lunchtime on Monday afternoon and there are NO crowds *yes you heard correctly* and the sun is shining. We head into the Winter Wonderland through Angels Christmas Market, it’s very pretty and the 200 fairy lit Bavarian style wooden chalets are filled with candles, jewellery, toys, gifts, sweets, stocking fillers and everything you could possibly want for Christmas. The prices are a little expensive but that’s to be expected from a top quality Christmas Market in the heart of London….opposite Mayfair! We follow the long avenues of twinkling lights down into the food and drink section of Winter Wonderland. We can smell roasted chestnuts, German sausages and very VERY strong mulled wine. Sweet candy floss fills the cold air with enticement and expectation. My mummy has butterflies in her tummy on what to expect next. It’s our first time here and we have no idea where we are going….this place is HUGE, we can see a giant white wheel in the background, so we decide to head for that.

Winter Wonderland Hyde ParkYou can take a ride on the Giant Observation Wheel and soar 60 metres into the London sky in little pods. While up there you can see 360˚ panoramic views and the whole of the London skyline. Each flight takes 12-15 minutes and the wheel is open until 9.45pm. We don’t venture on the large wheel as I’m a bit scared of heights and pods.

Winter Wonderland has no admission fee to enter its gates – you simply turn up and pay to do whatever takes your fancy. Some attractions get fully booked during peak times and my Aunty is treating us to the Magical Ice Kingdom which was pre-booked off the website back in October. If you are visiting and fancy a go on the fun fair rides you can and just need tokens available from the token booths on site.

It’s worth pre-booking tickets in advance for:
Ice Skating
The Magical Ice Kingdom
Zippos Christmas Circus and Cirque Berserk
Giant Wheel
Bar Ice to ensure you get the time and date you want with no disappointed faces.

We carry on walking up the great avenue towards the wheel, more Christmas gift stalls line the pathways with children’s rides scattered around, giant winter creatures greet us as we find ourselves at Santa Land. We love the Nutcracker statue and bright painted signs.

We don’t spend much time exploring the land of Santa, and miss Santa’s Toy Factory fun house where Santa & his elves are making gifts ready for the big day. We’re worried about finding somewhere warm to perch our bums to have our lunch so the hunt goes on for the perfect spot. Santa opens his grotto every day from 10am to 6pm and it is FREE to visit Santa. Run on a first-come first-served basis and the VERY good children receive a small gift.

Winter Wonderland Hyde ParkOne thing that we were impressed with is that the walkways are great for babies! Most of Winter Wonderland is flat and level for buggies, with only gentle inclines. The baby changing facilities (when we visited) were heated and clean with loads of room are were situated around the Winter Wonderland site. The only thing we will say is that there weren’t enough heated seating areas to eat food or take a relaxing break. Everywhere seemed cold and we couldn’t find any high chairs! We looked around and before we knew it we are finally at the foot of the giant wheel, opposite is a warm indoor eating place. At last! Somewhere warm and cosy! Unfortunately the only seats are high stools (not really practical for children) next to the hay bales. We can’t see any high chairs around :( and assume its an oversight for Winter Wonderland as they seem to have everything else? This is the first massive hurdle we’ve encountered, I can’t sit on the floor as it’s too dirty and the hay bales are part of a display. Maybe next year they could use hay bales as a cheap low seating solution for small children. Mummy and Grandma have to hold me during lunch while I precariously balance on one of these high stools like a proper adult. We enjoy our lunch which is a hot dog and chips and mulled wine for Mummy, Grandma and my Aunty.

I get fidgety and my mummy takes me out one of the side doors, suddenly we’re transported into a winter scene, giant polar bears and penguins, an iced waterfall and snow. It’s beautiful the whole area is blue and white with wooded chalets dotted around, steam chugging out of their chimneys and doors, we can see lots of people wrapped up warm here. Right in front of us is The Ice Kingdom which we are going to at 3pm. My Aunty had booked us all tickets to go and see the ice sculptures for our Christmas presents!

We walk around the area known as the Article Circle. There’s plenty of entertainment on offer in here, from winter themed rides, ‘try your skills’ games and even the North Pole frozen fun house. We watch the Winter Wonderland StarFlyer which Soars 60 metres into the air overlooking the whole Arctic Circle, it makes my stomach turn just glancing up at it! Behind us we hear screams and laughter coming from the Ice Mountain roller coaster, it’s built like a bob sleigh and zooms around a lot going through an ice jet! Brrrrrr too fast and too cold for me!

imageBefore we know it the small queue has started to form at the Magical Ice Kingdom, this is why we are here today so we rush to join the end of the line. We put on our wooly hats and mittens which I proceed to take off the nearer and nearer we get to the entrance. It’s cold outside but we really have no idea how cold it will be in the Magical Ice Kingdom. It’s a walk through experience and the largest of its kind in the UK. The normal time it takes to walk through this Ice Kingdom is 15 minutes, as spending anymore time in the -8c temps true is too much for anyone to take, unless you are wrapped up in Arctic gear. My mummy stupidly forgets her gloves so her hands are freezing. She stuffs mitten on my hands and squashes then under her armpits to keep them warm. We see the frozen forest with the ice unicorns drinking from a lake, the ice fairies and the ice thrones which we sit on. And get our photos taken (there are no queues today!) my grandmas braves the ice slide while my mummy and I look on in amazement! But before long I’m scrambling for the door as its soooooo cold in here. As soon as we get out into the day light we are bathed in the British winter weather and it seems barmy and much milder than inside the Ice Kingdom! Still seeking more heat to warm our cockles we head to the Arctic Lodge and warm up by the open fire and enjoy a hot chocolate and more mulled wine.

The rest of the afternoon is filled with walking around the remainder of Winter Wonderland and as we lose the daylight the artificial lights and magic continues to make us smile with the fairground rides coming to life. We watch skaters on the ice rink, people on the roller coasters, shoppers in the market and families cozying up in the numerous food outlets and bars. The Ice Rink looks truly magical and romantic. It’s set around an old Victorian bandstand and illuminated with over 100,000 lights. There are a lot of people watching the skaters and it seems busy now its night-time. It’s open from 10am until 10pm and you don’t need to bring your own skates as they are provided as part of the ticket price! Booking is recommended though as this is one of the key attractions at Winter Wonderland!

imageWe leisurely stroll around the Christmas markets on the way out. As we are leaving there are masses of people queuing to get into the Winter Wonderland at 5pm. It must get busy here in the evenings my mummy thinks due to people finishing work and kids wanting to go after school. We picked a good time to go.

So will we return? Yes, now that we’ve done it we will be brave enough to head up to London again, it’s a very long day for us but worth it. We might pass on Winter Wonderland next year and wait until I’m old enough to go on a lot more rides. Next time we’ll like to explore Santa Land, but I’m still a bit scared of the man in the red suit with the white beard. Until next time London!

Top tips for visiting Winter Wonderland

1) Go on a week day, less queues, more seats, more space and a better experience.

2) Wrap up warm and wear layers.

3) Take buggy clips for bags, jackets and scarfs.

4) If you are a baby-wearer take a sling, it’s a must for busy areas like this or reins for walking little people.

5) Grab a map at the ticket/token booths.

6) Find and set up ‘Base Camp’, an operation like a trip to London requires a go to haven if children get lost.

7) Take lots of money and change, you’ll going to need it, pre-book well in advance for the major attractions to avoid disappointed faces.

8) Keep an eye on your personal belongs, wear your rucksack on your front and keep valuables hidden and close to you.

9) If you can afford it, grab a taxi or walk with small children, the tube is stressful if you aren’t use to the underground and can ruin a day out with the kids on a busy day.

10) Breath and relax, find time to sit and watch the world go by at Winter Wonderland, it is a beautiful setting and very Christmassey.

Love Bella x

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Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Dr Brown’s Training Cup

For tried & tested this week we are trying out this new training cup from Dr Brown’s. I’m a bit of a mucky pup and constantly spill juice down my chin and knock things over. So we’re hoping this training cup from Dr Brown’s is a good solution to my dribbly ways.

Bella and Dr Browns Trainer Cup 3The packaging is basic but it does the job, it comes with a nifty little instruction booklet which handley fits in the bottle and tells you how to clean the cup.

It comes in two colours, pink & yellow and blue & green. It has soft grip handles for me to wrap my little fingers around, it’s a good size 270ml (roughly 9oz) and is a sturdy bottle which easily fits in my mummy’s rucksack.

Sometimes the handles can stick out when shoving it into a bag which is a little annoying for mummy but I don’t mind. All parts are interchangeable and you can use the trainer cup without the handles if needed. It’s got a hard spout which it great to bite on, perfect for when I’m teething.

Bella and Dr Browns Trainer Cup 2It’s really easy for me to use, I’m 21 months now so have strength and dexterity to lift and hold things in my little fingers.

My hand finds it easy to navigate around the Dr Brown’s training cup and I like drinking from the spout. It’s sip activated and only works when I suck to drink.

I find it much easier than drinking from a straw and there is a lot less mess! It’s a non-drip non-spill cup too which means no little accidents when I drop it :)

It may not be the prettiest drinking vessel to look at but it’s super functional and practical. It would be lovely if Dr Brown’s made some of these with pretty patterns and colours…then it really would tick all my boxes.

Dr Brown’s products are renowned for quality and this little training cup doesn’t let the standard slip in this non-drip ;) *see what I did there* It’s BPA free which is reassuring too.

Love Bella x

Family Fever
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Top of Town Christmas in Basingstoke

Dear Mummy, we visited the Top of Town in Basingstoke recently to partake in some festive fun. We heard that Father Christmas and his reindeer were in town. This is the first time I’ve clamped eyes on Rudolf and I wasn’t disappointed. The Top of Town Christmas event was on for one night only, on Friday 5th December. My mummy picked me up early from nursery so we got parked up early before the crowds. We easily found a space up at Joices Yard car park behind the high street and it was free! We couldnt believe our luck! Must be because the Christmas event is on.

Top of Town BasingstokeWe head to The Tea Bar, which is a quaint vintage tea shop in the heart of the high street. It’s very pretty in here and we find comfy sofa’s and warm up with hot tea and a babyccino for me. The Tea Bar is very kiddy friendly and at the back of the cafe is a large low coffee table with children’s books, a large plasma screen, board games and wooden toys next to it. We enjoy some cake and my mummy and grandma catch up and have a good chat, while I play. The Tea Bar has a fantastic range of teas and plays host to Live Jazz evenings, crafty workshops for kids and vintage parties. My mummy would like to go to the Rat Pack evening, check out their FB page for more details :)

Its 5pm and we head outside into the cold to watch the school choirs sing, a crowd gathers underneath a large gazebo huddled in chairs. The mayor of Basingstoke is here and opens up the Christmas celebration and we see Santa arrive on his wheeled chariot and heads to his grotto. A lot of people are here to see him and eagerly queue outside one the shops which has been transformed into a fairy light wonderland. While we’re here it’s the perfect time to go and explore the shops. We head to the Naomi House charity shop to see our friend Angie and buy a raffle ticket.

Top of Town BasingstokeThe Top of Town Christmas is part of an initiative by Basingstoke Borough Council to encourage more shoppers up to the top end of Basingstoke to support small businesses and encourage growth. However, the Top of Basingstoke only really plays host to pubs, restaurants, hair & beauty salons, nail bars, tattoo parlours and charity shops, so really needs more high street shops up there too. There are a couple of small jewellery shops which take my mummy’s fancy but the majority of retail shops are in Festival Place Shopping centre now, which is much the same in every big town and city – when large shopping centres open the high street suffers. I’m glad the council are trying to do something positive to keep the Top of Town alive and prosperous. There are still a lot of units closed which is a shame and kind of off-putting. They need some more local businesses up there in pop-up shops, maybe a soft play centre or something to draw the crowds up there?

Its starting to get really cold, too cold for a baby like me to be out so, we enjoy some quick crafting and make a reindeer mask with SL Art workshop and see the reindeers before waving goodbye and heading home. It was a lovely way to spend a couple of hours in an area where we wouldn’t ordinarily visit. Hopefully the Top of Town will play host to more events like this is the future. Can’t wait until Basingstoke Live returns next year! That’s always a sure fire way to get the community up to the old high street.

Love Bella x

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My NEXT Christmas Wish List

Dear Mummy, it’s that time of year, when people crack open the ‘Christmas Jumpers’ and the glitzy party wear. We’ve scoured the high street shops and are quite excited about the NEXT collection in stores and online. Some really nice stuff there. Here’s our Christmas Wish List. My mummy’s favourite item from their collection is the funky (and warm) Leopard Faux Fur Jacket at £70. Mine is the super stylish Lace Prom Dress at around £30. We’ve teamed them below with our favourite pieces from NEXT stores. What would be on your NEXT Wish List?

Next Christmas wishlist 2014

This is a competition entry for the NEXT Blogger’s Network. #NextmasWishlist

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

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Christmas at Mottisfont, National Trust

“The Nutcracker”

Today king of mice, tonight king of dolls. Tomorrow… king of EVERYTHING!
-Mouse King

Dear Mummy, it’s December and we are looking for fun things to do in Hampshire over the Christmas period. As you all know we’re big fans of The National Trust and have been members now since I was born. Each Christmas Mottisfont hold a Christmassy wonderland in their grounds and the house. If you don’t know what or where Mottisfont is, then head over here to check it out and have a look at some of my past reviews.

Mottisfont GroundsThis year the Mottisfont NT team have put on a spectacular display, it’s theme is The Nutcracker, where toys and fun comes to life!

The Nutcracker is based on the book “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” by E.T.A. Hoffman. Russian composer Peter Tchaikovsky wrote the music for the ballet which it is now most famous for. Over the Christmas period families flock to see the ballet, but this year The Nutcracker story is being hosted a bit closer to home in Romsey, Hampshire at Mottisfont, National Trust until Jan 4th 2015.

We were lucky enough to go on the opening day and weren’t disappointed with the weather either. It’s a bright and crisp day, the last day of November 2014 and there is a chill in the air. We wrap up warm and put our wellies on, as it’s especially muddy at Mottisfont at present, you see they have some building works happening at the entrance to the estate. The National Trust are creating a super-duper visitors centre which will be opening this time next year! Looking at the plans on the way in, it looks fab – very modern and in keeping with its surroundings.

So there is a temporary wooden chalet with pretty fairy lights to greet visitors to Mottisfont. It’s very quaint. No ducks are out on the river, as it’s too cold! The large trees are all bear, their huge branches looking creepy like something out of ‘Sleepy Hollow’ I half expect a headless horseman to appear out of the large trunks.

The Cafe has been swapped around since we last visited, which is a shame as the dinning areas seem a bit more cramped and the queues for food longer. It could be because its busy today….We grab some yummy Christmas Cake, a kids picnic box and some warm soup and a jacket potato. My mummy dives into the cake before she’s had the soup! I, on the other hand, am quite content to be a fidget-bum and terrorise the rest of the dinners by weaving in and out of the chairs and creating havoc. It’s all a bit stressful to get all of us sat down and eating, and mummy and daddy take turns to feed themselves then me. An elderly group sit next to us and just stare.

Mottisfont's ChristmasAfter lunch we head outside to explore, running around like mad loons on the grass – and that’s just mummy. You see my daddy is still not well, he had pneumonia and don’t think he’s fully recovered yet, so walks around finding it hard to breath.

We head into the house and follow The Nutcracker paper guide and activities (the printed map is a suggested donation of £1 and is a good keepsake) We follow Clara and other characters from The Nutcracker around the large manor house. First we stop to see the enormous size christmas tree and wrapped presents – the baubles are larger than my head! My uncle, cousin and daddy sit on the carpeted floor and play with some of the old-fashioned toys laid out (it’s all very civilised) well…it was until I decided to have a mad 5 minutes, jumping around and dancing to silent music.

The Nutcraker at MottisfontWe head down the pretty lit corridor to the large wooden staircase and see Herr Drosselmeyer (a character out of the Nutcracker) directing visitors upstairs to the dream mechanical world of the Nutcracker. We play peekaboo through the banisters and I get scared of the large wooden puppets, we don’t have time to sit and craft paper puppets, so my mummy takes them home for us to do later.

The next room is filled with clear little boxes. Inside these boxes are little mechanical toys. They look super cute – but on closer inspection and when daddy pushes the red buttons on the side of the display cases – they come to life! I get scared instantly and look away. However, my mummy is in her element, pressing each and every one of those red buttons and enjoying the displays. The weird and wonderful automata are on show from the famous Cabaret Mechanical Theatre. We eventually walk through Mottisfont’s art exhibition rooms, where the Nutcracker story is projected through film, showcasing an exciting battle between the Mouse King and the toy soldiers, artwork and activities (we won’t tell you too much as we don’t want to ruin the surprise for you if you decide to go) but it’s awesome. Beautiful little lantern theatres reveal more of the story.

Bella at MottisfontWe’ve been inside the house for nearly half an hour, and as the sun is shinning we head back outside to find the ‘Land of Sweets’ in the courtyard, a cuppa tea and some Christmas presents from the gift shop.

My mummy decides that sticky fingers shouldn’t be inside a gift shop and after picking up several times and being told to put them back, I’m safely escorted from the premises by daddy. However I do mange to convince them to buy this cute little pack of jingle bells for the tree….well, they aren’t really for the tree! I take two out and frantically wave them up and down, making the bells ring around the courtyard, people stop and stare and they sound very christmassy – just like reindeer bells I think. It’s not long before I’m trading one for a chocolate coin off my cousin..yes I’m really that devious. My mummy peals the golden wrapper off it and I devour the chocolate coin – my first one ever! Now that my cousin and I have bells we ring them together creating even more noise – its such fun!

The Winter Garden at Mottisfont Holding hands we all head to the ‘Land of Snow’ in the Winter Garden to take in the beautiful art installation by Sarah Filmer. Glass and perspex snowflakes hand from the tree and sparkle in the winter sunlight. The sun is bright and low in the sky and the snowflakes twinkle when the wind catches them, we also see large mirrored snow geese swooping up to a large oak tree.

I have fun chasing my cousin around down the windy paths and through the gates, I get very muddy after falling over a couple of times. My mummy however, is not horrified by that – I mean whats a bit of mud eh? What she IS horrified by though is other visitors reactions and judgment to seeing me covered in mud *Shock* Horror* covering their expressions….come on guys! It’s only a bit of mud…haven’t you ever seem a muddy child! Jeeeeze!

Mottisfont WinterThe temperature has dropped and we ahead back to the courtyard where I play in the learning and activity room, colouring in a gingerbread man and sticking little gems on him, while daddy warms up. On returning outside I see my opportunity to check out this large puddle which has been playing on my mind. I wanted to play in it earlier, but didn’t have the chance.

Now mummy and daddy are having a rest drinking their tea and watching me from afar I jump in. The puddle covers my feet so I can’t see them anymore, mummy and daddy are talking and I can hear them discussing about whether I’m ok jumping in that large puddle and what happens if I………oh dear. I’ve fallen over. Right in the puddle. Right on my bum. Water seeping into my boots. Doh! Oh well, at least mummy and daddy have ANOTHER spare set of clothes.

Needless to say on the way out we dodge all puddles……

There is mist coming off the River Test, when we leave at 4ish, we’ve lost the daylight and the half-moon is out, I eagerly point at it shouting ‘mooooom’. Its cold. Real cold. My cheeks are rosy and my fingers are like little icicles. We all bundle in the car and head home. I sing loudly all the way home (much to the annoyance of mummy).

If you love the Nutcracker story…or just love Christmas, then this is the place for you. It really will capture your imagination.

We were most impressed by the time and effort that went into the creation and preparation of the Land of Sweets by Mottisfonts Craft Group….so well done! It really was appreciated.

We had a fantastic day. I’m sure these photos say it all!

Love Bella x

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall