It is now only four weeks before I return to work, and Tony has finished the work he was doing during my maternity leave so that we can spend plenty of time together as a family before I officially hand over the childcare reigns to him once again!
Over the last few weeks we have thought a lot about how we will spend these precious four weeks, we’ve even occasionally got carried away with the thought of a holiday – foreign or at home – but we a reality check on cost has meant that we have returned to our original plan of plenty of lovely local days out.
We started on Sunday with a trip to Martin Mere Wetland Centre in Lancashire. Hubby had fond memories of a school trip to this Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust run bird haven, so he expected great things. On the other hand, my expectations were low – bird spotting doesn’t exactly fill me with enthusiasm and I imagined vast wetlands with a few birds in the distance, viewable only through binoculars (and really, who cares what kind they are?)
In fact, there were a series of different areas which you walked through all with different geographical themes. There were flamingoes, very close up, and loads of unusually coloured ducks (well, they looked like ducks to me). The grounds were quite pretty really, not just the barren, vast open spaces I imagined. There were also beavers (allegedly – we didn’t spot any), but my favourites were the otters.
You could buy a bag of bird seed for £1 which kept Lilly amused – and not ALL of it got dropped on the floor, which was
a miracle good.
Lilly’s favourite thing was the slightly hair-raising walk along the stepping stones with daddy…
My least favourite bit was when Lilly anounced she needed a wee when we were exactly half way around the route – and of course the only toilets were back at the entrance…
All in all, I was more impressed than I thought I would be, Tony was less impressed than he remembered. And it was a bit pricey – all in all for two adults and one child (Isla and Eve were free) it came to about £25. I don’t think we’ll be rushing back, but it was a good start to our programme of days out.
On Monday we visited an old favourite – Croxteth Hall Country Park.
The girls had a good play on the playground before we went for a little walk (we brought Lilly’s scooter), had an explore in the trees and a quick game of football on the grass before visiting the little farm.
The only disappointment was when we sat down to eat some ice creams (the weather was lovely!) and Lilly stepped in dog dirt. It very much took the shine off the lovely time we were having as I had to try and clean her shoe as best I could before putting it back on her to get to the car – and then discovering that the pram wheels had also gone through the dirt so I had to use many more baby wipes to try and clean them… I could rant for days about how much I HATE irresponsible dog owners!!!!!
Once we got home and I had managed to wash my hands about 10 times to banish the memory of the dog poo, the girls had a lovely play out in the garden with their water table.
On Tuesday the weather was still beautiful so we stayed at home and played in the garden. Then on Wednesday we took ourselves to Chester Zoo (where we are members) and had a lovely day in the blazing sunshine. We enjoyed a picnic in a (hard to find) shady spot and visited some of our favourites – Lilly’s being the dinosaurs which are currently there temporarily. Isla finds the dinosaurs too scary so while Lilly, daddy and a sleeping Eve were looking at them Isla and I had a lovely time together watching the penguins, giraffes and butterflies. We had a lovely day finishing up with some ice lollies for everyone.
We are starting to get used to all the things we need to take and the logistics of days out as a threesome – it seems to take hours of preparation and we have a full car load of stuff (we recently upgraded our car to a proper people carrier – just as well!) But hopefully Eve is getting a little more patient and there seems to be less screaming (except when milk is due!) so the days out have become a little less stressful.
Now we’re just hoping that the fabulous weather continues for a while – we have plans for another trip to the seaside tomorrow and our first barbecue in this house on Saturday!
- Life as a family of five (growingmyfamilytree.wordpress.com)
- A quick catch-up (growingmyfamilytree.wordpress.com)
- Funny things they say May edition (growingmyfamilytree.wordpress.com)
- Terrible twos strike again – Isla at 22 months (growingmyfamilytree.wordpress.com)
- Say hello to Eve… (growingmyfamilytree.wordpress.com)
- Pulled pigtails and windy walks (growingmyfamilytree.wordpress.com)
- Butterflies & pretty hearts (growingmyfamilytree.wordpress.com)