It’s almost a certainty that when the kids have an entire week off school for half-term break that the storms will swoop in bringing with them heavy rain, fierce winds and hailstones! There are so many PJ days I can have with my kids before it all starts unravelling at the seams! I love snuggling up and watching movies with my boys 100% but not for 7 days in a row – no, that inspires cabin fever, frayed nerves and too many wrestling matches for my liking!
So, when rainy days linger on without much prospect for a break in the clouds…please…a small glimpse of blue sky…no?
Okay, wellies on boys, we are off out on a rainy day adventure!
Thankfully, my boys are up for most of my suggestions if it involves food and an opportunity to run wild and get muddy. We invited a few friends to join us for a rainy day trip to Crawfordsburn Country Park. It’s one of our winning places to visit because it has it all – gorgeous woodland, riverside walks to a magnificent waterfall, beaches (yes, plural), toilets and heaps of parking.
On arrival we found a cute little sheltered area and set up a ‘campfire’ in the Kelly Kettle so that we could cook sausages for lunch followed by toasted marshmallows for dessert. Once the fire was lit, the boys all took off for a game of ‘capture the flag’ while my friend and I enjoyed a cuppa and a chinwag and kept the fire going. The whoops and cheers coming from the forest kept us up to speed with the goings-on of the kids’ game and before long they seemed to sense when it was hotdog time and emerged from the trees like hungry beasts – how do they do that?
We enjoyed our camp party and although the rain continued to fall we somehow managed to keep fairly dry in our little spot sheltered by the trees. Once the grub was devoured, appetites satisfied and a serious number of gooey marshmallows scoffed, it was time to pack up and go burn off some energy.
Into the woods…
Wintertime slowly beginning to merge into spring is a beautiful time to go wandering in the woods. Little buds and blossoms are starting to poke their heads up, the place is coming alive once more after a long sleep and it feels pretty special to explore. Kids are right at home in this setting aren’t they? – the wildness of the landscape matches their interior wildness and they seem to sparkle and come alive as they make up silly games, climb trees, paddle in the river and explore. Routine, exams, homework and all the other expectations placed on kids these days are forgotten awhile as they enjoy the freedom of time and space. Before long, mud from the earth is smeared on cheeks as camouflage – how quickly and naturally they become part of the natural world! These wild creatures were alive!
We returned home that evening muddy to the eyeballs but still laughing and chatting about our rainy day fun. It was great to share the time with friends and let loose for a while before snuggling up with blankets, a roaring fire and another movie!