Rollercoaster Mum: It's a Bank Holiday Weekend - Already?


Friday, 3 May 2013

It's a Bank Holiday Weekend - Already?

Where has the time gone? I can't believe we are two weeks in to the school Summer Term already and my little baby girl is in her last term in Reception class - eeek. This bank holiday weekend has sneaked up on me in a similar fashion so I'm not really sure what we might do, other than enjoy the sunshine (hopefully!)

If you're stuck for things to do to why not check out the National Trust's website of '50 Things to do before you're 113/4' which they have relaunched this week with 15 new things added to the list and if you sign your children up to the website they can unlock secret challenges and games as they do more of the 50 things. They have some great ideas to get the kids outside and active like fly a kite (no. 7) or create some wild art (no. 18). There is something for everybody and all weathers and although it is promoted by the National Trust you don't have to go to one of their properties to do them - no 13 is 'make a mud pie' - you can do that in the back garden and it's especially fun if it's been raining! Chris Evans has done a brilliant synopsis of the 50 things here on an Audioboo -
If you do fancy a day out and you're in the South East - how about trying Petworth House and Park in West Sussex which we visited a couple of weekends ago on the National Trust Free Day Out. It is an enormous stately home still lived in by Lord and Lady Egremont, set in beautiful grounds laid out by Capability Brown complete with a lake, a herd of deer and several follies. The only problem we had that it was so popular that weekend that the car park was full so we had to park over the road and walk across a green to get there. We started off with lunch in the restaurant (set in a stunning hall) to make sure we had plenty of energy and then we set off to explore the house.

National Trust
lunch in that big hall
Next up was the Servants Quarters. They are huge and I think my favourite bit as they really bring them to life. The girls enjoyed turning the churn in the winter dairy - trying to make  butter!

National Trust

National Trust
Trying to make butter!!
Once these were explored we walked across the courtyard to the big house where a lovely lady told us all about the spaniel hunt - there are toy spaniels hidden all over the house and if you spot them all you get a sticker (they are quite small and hard to find but we did spot them all - hint - look upwards!) She also told us about the treasure chests in the rooms which are activities for the kids to do. Little Miss Sunshine was particularly keen on these and they included dressing up, dolls house furniture to rearrange and even a place setting to set out like a posh dinner table. I would say though that at age 8, Little Miss Star was a little left out as most of the activities were a bit young for her but she was a bit young to appreciate all the old pictures and things in the house.

National Trust
Grand spot for dressing up! 
Once all the spaniels were safely found and stickers collected we headed off into the grounds for a walk and the beauty of these is that you can wander around these for free! They are also perfect for ticking off a few of your 50 things. You could climb a tree, roll down a big hill, fly a kite, explore inside a tree or hunt for scary (mini)beasts amongst others.
National Trust
Running down that hill

National Trust

We enjoyed exploring the old boat house and the follies, running down a big hill and clambering around on trees whilst I admired the lovely flowers in the gardens and of course took a few pictures. As usual the girls had to be dragged away and really didn't want to come home.

National Trust
The Lake (and a dog)

National Trust

If you want some alternatives to the National Trust then how about one of these ideas on this handy graphic from Moneysupermarket - there's some deals and the results of a survey on the 'days out habits' of families in Britain - looks like we like our days out but we also love a bargain!

        Image source: MoneySupermarket Travel Insurance

As for this weekend - well I'm not sure what we're going to do but I reckon we'll definitely have a go at ticking off at least one of those 50 things even if we don't go for a day out. I can practically smell those mud pies cooking in the garden! Whatever you do have a great weekend and enjoy that extra day off!

Oh and I'm linking up with Country Kids over at Coombe Mill - I'm sure there will be some more ideas over there on the other blogs too so do take a look (just click the badge!)
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Disclosure - I have not been paid in any way for this post. All words, pictures and opinions are my own.


  1. Some happy pictures of your day exploring a lovely NT property and grounds. The chests and spaniels are great ideas to entertain the children whilst the adults admire the grandeur of the home. Thanks for your lovely comments and sharing with Country Kids.

    1. I think they still preferred the outside though really! Always mean to link up more but don't always have the right posts!

  2. haven't been there for over 20 years! maybe one time we are back south ;-) We did lots of activities for the 50 things at our local national trust castle yesterday a great scheme

  3. Love the photo of making butter


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