Soaking Wet

If there’s one activity that my toddler enjoys more than playing with toy vehicles, it’s playing with water and bubbles. On Friday afternoon I poured some warm water into the box he uses for water play in the yard, and gave him a big sponge with some washing up liquid in it. I thought that he would stand, sit or crouch on the floor outside the box and play with the water and bubbles like that. He had other ideas! Within about ten seconds of seeing the water, he just climbed straight in, fully dressed! He played for ages and everything got soaking wet – including me! He thought it was brilliant.

Around the point where he decided that eating the bubbles would be a good idea (it wasn’t), I took him out, tipped it away and then took him upstairs for an early bath. As I was bathing him I was reminded of how we used to play just like this when we were children. Or rather, when we used to go on holiday to Pevensey Bay, we would play in the sea or on the sand for ages and get so wet, sandy and filthy that we would need early baths. We’d moan about having to stop play and go inside, and shriek at how hot the bathwater was in comparison to how cold we all felt after being in the sea for so long. And then we’d get out, get dry and put on clean clothes and go and sit in the warm sunlounge room at the front of the house, overlooking the sea.  And although we’d fought hard about coming inside in the first place, the feeling of being cosy and clean and dry and warm was so … shnuggly that you found you didn’t want to go outside and play again and were just happy to be in.

Maybe it’s just me, but it feels special when I see things from my childhood being repeated in my son’s childhood. I have really fond memories of my childhood and so it kind of feels like I’m doing things right when this happens. He had such fun that afternoon, and helping him to have fun is one of my favourite activities :-)


Just One Sunny Day

After the week of greyness and rain that we have had, I wasn’t holding out much hope for a sunny birthday. I was very surprised to wake up to perfect blue sky and sunshine! Very happy though, it is always a pleasure to have sunshine on my birthday. Andy has had this week off from work and we decided that we would go to Hesketh Farm Park and then to the Yorkshire Dales Ice Cream Parlour for lunch. The former is more of a toddler’s day out, but if he is happy then I am happy and I just delight in seeing him interested and happy. I knew that he would love all the animals and I was right.

It’s a rare treat for us all to have a day out and I think TTB knew this too as he insisted on holding both of our hands to walk. Until he saw the free range rabbit that is …

He was saying “stroke! stroke!” here and trying to catch it but the rabbit was a big tease and hopped away. I get the feeling that the rabbit enjoys being chased! It was hopping everywhere, in and out of the animal pens, over the walls and under the gates.

The most surprising free range animals were the three (spur-thighed?) tortoises! Just ambling around, as you do. One stood on my foot while I was washing my hands! They moved a lot faster than I was expecting. As you can imagine, TTB thought these were wonderful.

I loved seeing all the piglets! There were several pens with a sow and nursing piglets, these were the smallest ones. I was surprised at the variation in size between the piglets in the litter. They’re really funny though, they were all frantically feeding at once, squawking and grunting and wriggling …

… and then not long afterwards they had all turned around away from mum and piled on top of each other for a snooze! The biggest one is on the top in the middle. I presume they all do this for warmth, it seemed to be a popular sleeping formation as all of the other piglets in the other pens were piled up too.

I had quite a lot of time to enjoy the scenery once we made it outside of the animal barns because there was a John Deere tractor that you could go in, and TTB did not want to get out.

Even when we did get him out, he led Andy round in a circle around the tractor and then just back up the steps again and got back in!

I managed to snaffle him for a photo though. I can never believe how big tractor wheels are, I know that’s silly but they’re huuuuge.

Driving along the lanes afterwards was so lovely, and I felt so happy. Perfect weather, perfect day, spent with my two favourite people. Summer in the countryside is so pretty! Look at all that cow parsley and the puffy clouds!

Having no oven means that I can’t bake a birthday cake and so I felt justified in sending Andy to the fancy cake shop instead. OH YUM! I have wanted one of these dinky carrot cakes for AGES!

I can confirm that it was deeeeeelicious.

I got a rather lovely surprise in the evening when one of my friends popped round with a beautiful bunch of roses for me, and her son (who is TTB’s friend) had made me a birthday card and he sang “Happy Birthday” to me. So sweet! I had such a lovely day and I got more cards than I think I ever have before. Just a lovely day, I couldn’t have asked for better. It has poured with rain all day today and so it feels even more special that we had wonderful sunshine yesterday. Happy happy happy :)