Well, what a busy time I’ve been having – seems like ages since I’ve blogged. Lots of visitors, lots of wonderful friends and family time, lots of entertaining. We also have my lovely father-in-law as a house guest. All lovely but the days have been very Full. I am expecting to ease back into a slightly gentler routine this week so I’ll be able to share all of the posts I have lined up to show you. It’s so lovely having the photographs to look through to remind me of how much fun it all was. I have not had a chance to upload the piccies from this week yet but I have this post that I told you about here when I had just returned from a wonderful day out. I cannot believe it was a fortnight ago but I think you will enjoy seeing this. As promised, it is going to be choc full of cuteness!
The weather forecast for Birmingham and the surrounding area was apalling with regular, heavy rain predicted throughout the day. Living in England one cannot stay in just because of a bit of weather but days out in the rain with babies and young children are not always the most relaxing experience and we were hesistant to spend a fortune on a trip that could end up being a wash out. If we went further East, however, the weather prospect was slightly clearer. After a bit of Googling I came up with a destination – a Waterfowl Sanctuary and Children’s Farm near Banbury Cross.
Anybody with experience of travel with babies and young children will know that getting out of the house is like a
failing military opperation (especially when, like me, they have a relaxed, slightly haphazard approach to life). Eventually, by late morning, everybody had been kitted out with coats and suitable footwear (Wellington/Gum Boots were a must!) and we were off. By the time we found ourselves driving through the delightful village of Bloxham there were already cries of hunger from the back seats. Normally we would pack a picnic for this sort of outing but this was Grandparents Treat Day so we stopped at the Horse and Groom Inn in Milcombe. Unfortunately I have no pictures of the pub or the delicious grub within but all I can say is Yummy. If you are ever in the Banbury Cross area I recommend a trip to this tavern as the food was superb and was devoured by one and all.
It was mid afternoon when we finally reached our destination. Hopes were high – we had never heard about this place before and we were hoping it would not disappoint. Imagine my delight when we walked through the door and were greated by this pile of colourful, woolly goodness:
Any doubts disappeared. This place was going to be fun! And indeed it was. The sanctuary was a small, family run operation with a warm, friendly vibe and was very reasonably priced. No gimics, just animals, mud and space for children to run in. Perfect. I felt quite nostalgic with the humble simplicity of it all – there are not many commercially run children’s attractions with shelves like this in their shops:
Just look at them – awww! So sad that after all that work they’re only sold for £3.99.
The first attraction was a sort of ‘pet’s corner’, which was wonderfully low key and interactive. Those colourful woolly scraps were put to good use as little hands got to stroke the bunnies…
…the big people got a cuddle too!
The guinea pigs were just adorable – my sister once had one that looked just like this:
Just look at that twitchy nose! So Cute!
The gerbils were very friendly but too fast to catch on camera…
…and this little guy was just Too Gorgeous!
However there was no competition for my favourite:
I wish I could show you the faces of the children as they got to hold them all. ‘Look – A Real Duckling sitting in My Lap!’
All of the animals were really friendly and used to being held, even by excited little hands, and the staff were very patient, happily exchanging the rabbit for a chick for a duckling until everyone was satisfied. So much enjoyment and we’d only just entered the place!
I hope you’re enjoying the trip so far. I’m going to sign off now but come back tomorrow where there will be plenty of these fellows waiting to say hello: