Butterfly world

I love family days out, days that cost us less than £15 for all 5 of us are even better!

We have been wanting to go for ages and you know what I’m not sure why we havent, but isn’t that the way it always goes!

Today broke sunny – for a change, and we decided to bite the bullet and the 9 degree weather and do it!  And of course it was fab.  The kids loved it, I loved that it got them outside running around and seeing and exploring new things.

They loved butterfly house (even though we thought there could be more of them) and loved the ant house even more (no extra ants needed here)!!! They loved holding giant snails and looking at the roaches, praying mantis and stick insects. There is a fab play area that is so nicely spaced out that you don’t feel on top of other people as well as different things to do (rope bridges, 3 different slides, climbing frame, sand pit and wobbly bridge).  There are walks and willow tunnels. Different gardens with giant pots and forks, recycled gardens, water gardens, urban gardens as well as a pond.  There is enough to keep you busy for a full morning and actually the kids really didn’t want to go home and wanted to stay playing!

To be honest we thought the gardens were looking a little worn, but I think that’s due to the time of year and that really did not take away from a super day out!

Prices are £5 for adults and over 3’s at the moment which is really reasonable and there always seem to be vouchers out there for half price entry if you look.  They also do toddler mornings, craft days, hold the bug sessions with stroy time and the list goes on!  Next year autumn the new biome should be done – the world’s biggest butterfly walk through which will be amazing… an annual pass might be needed!

Have you been, what did you think?

The momentum post!

 

We were blessed recently by friends with tickets to a Christian festival – Soul Survivor Momentum in the summer holidays.  It was something we had been wanting to go to for many years but kids and logistics has always got in the way.  This year there was nothing stopping us besides finances but that’s no obstacle for God as he proved.

There were 8 families from our church that went together and it was an absolute blast.  We loved it and the kids loved it.

Camping with a 4 yo, 2yo and 1yo had it’s logistical complications but nothing a cable tie and some ribbon couldn’t sort out!  I was really surprised at how easily they go into it… for us it was a little harder to get into the super early mornings that seemed to accompany camping in the middle of summer with bright early morning sunshine!

Worshipping and spending time with about 6000 other Christians is WOW!

The weather played along and lovely evenings were spent with under the stars with vino or coffee whilst children slept listening to the sounds of worship drifting over from the big top.

There were sessions for the kids so that we could attend the main sessions and we took ours to the evening worship sessions from 7-8pm where they loved dancing around!  There was also supervised movies for children over 5 so that parents could go to the evening talks.

You know what if you have the chance do it, go with friends and enjoy some special and inspiring times with God.        Next time I’ll make sure I remember a potty – 2am toilet block runs are not fun!

Best laid plans…

Sometimes you research and plan and get organised only for it all to fall apart! Yesterday was one of those days. There seem to be a lot of those days with children.  Sometimes it’s due to logistics and sometimes nap time and grumpy children put paid to things.

Sometimes it makes me angry (I like to be in control just a little) and other times it just makes me disappointed that I didn’t get to do what I planned but on days like yesterday sometimes just going with the flow and enjoying the moment means a great and fun day out for all of us. Even though we adults didn’t get to do and see what we wanted to do and see.

Maybe living in the moment and enjoying will make life less stressful. And happier. And more fun. For everyone. Maybe I’ll have to trial it… and get the husband to buy into it…  Long, lovely, London summer days spent in the park… I think I can cope it that’s the result every time.

Lets see how long it lasts.

How do you cope with things not going as planned?

Olympics part 2.

We were so lucky and had great weather!

How scary is this whole temporary stadium made of scaffolding… it moved, a lot.  Especially during the mexican wave and when people were stamping their feet; freaked me out big time!

Much prettier at night…

The tuft was bright, someone get me my glasses!

The Coke Cola Beat Box – strange looking thing!

Loved the commitment from people who dressed up to support their countires! Here’s  one of many! There was even a guy dressed only in a British flag as a toga!

Spontaneous splashing.

After a lovely busy day- church, a drink with friends which was followed by a 3rd birthday party in some lovely hot weather inside we decided to make a pit stop before bed time as the 2 younger kids had passed out in the car on the way home and it was 5pm – too late for a nap!

We decided to stop at the moor down in town.  It’s lovely, it’s along the Grand Union Canal and at different times there are horses or cow there.  Yesterday was horses and their foals. The kids loved them. There is also a stream with some grassy flat spots for picnics!

Sometimes, it’s the spontaneous stops that are the most fun! I wish we’d had the camera with us to get some really lovely photo’s! Oh well, we’ll just have to go back and do it again!

Beachtime fun

We spent last week down in Cornwall for a family holiday with my parents! As usual the weather wasn’t on it’s best behaviour but that didn’t stop the kids from loving it!

It’s times like this where I really miss home and living on the coast – in the sunshine! I’ve always loved the beach and the sea and it’s really something I’d love my kids to grow up feeling comfortable and content in… at the moment we live too far away from it to make that happen easily but I’m going to take every single opportunity to do it!

They loved the mussels and anemones, Jenna wanted to eat the mussels for dinner!

Oh dear someone sat down in the rock pool!

Doesn’t it just make you want to go on holiday… I know I wanted to stay on holiday!! Thanks Mom and Brian it was a super time away! We’ll have to do it again… in warmer weather… with no rain!

Sunshine fun in Shenley!

I always love getting tips on new fun and free places to take the kids, especially when they are less than 10 min away and nearby to other family members! We got one such tip from a lovely (and thrifty) friend Nadine a few weeks ago.

We took advantage of the sunshine last weekend and decided to check it out! It was super!  There is a playground with cafe over looking it with apparently amazing scones (we were too late to try them out this time – oh well will have to organise another visit), there’s an orchard, wild flower garden, a supposed pond – it was empty when we went, a walled garden where they put on plays etc and a bunny/chicken/guinea pig corner! All in all pretty much everything a good park should have!

We were there for over 2 hours walking around and took a picnic dinner to have to finish it all off!  The kids loved it and it knackered them out, which is always a great side effect.

Come on summer! I can’t wait to do more things like this in glorious sunshine without jackets, boots and hats!

Fresh eyes

My husband and I were lucky enough to both be able to go to the Soul Survivor Naturally Supernatural conference one night last week. It was such a brilliant time just spending time with hundreds of other like-minded people!! The atmosphere when there are so many people in one place all with the same goal of drawing closer to God is just amazing. It’s at time like this that when I look around and wonder how anyone can say God is irrelevant, outdated, non-existent and has no place in society today.

Yes, it’s not something you see everyday and no it’s not something a lot of people are exposed to often.  It was so lovely to be sitting to a lovely new Christian lady who was seeing the Holy Spirit work in some new ways that she hadn’t seen before! I loved being able to share in the moments as she discovered new ways that He can work and manifest in us. In a non scary and totally loving way!

It took me back to pre children where we were able to go to things like this a lot more often. Admittedly I did feel like the old aunty in the room with so many young people around, and yet all I had to do was look to my left to see a couple who looked in their late 70’s just as excited and involved in the worship as those in their early 20’s!

He is truly a God for all the generations and all the people. And you know what if you don’t believe, that’s Ok, but if you ever get the chance to go to something like this take it! Don’t knock something you’ve never seen or tried. There’s a place for everyone in His house, a church for everyone – whether you like the loud or the quiet, the very traditional or more modern!

Sitting at the conference I was looking at it all through a fresh set of eyes, thanks to the lady on my left, and it made me appreciate again what an incredible, mighty, loving God we serve!