Bowood Country Park

The kids have been off for 10 days for the Autumn half term with Halloween during the second week.My friend Dee asked if we wanted to go out for the  day, so we went Bowood County Park which is just down the road from us.

We did the obligatory walk around the lake which was so stunning with all the Autumnal colours of the tree reflecting off the water.The kids haven’t done the walk for over a year and it was in the height of Summer.They have visited with other relations or have been with friend for birthdays but they just stay in the children’s adventure play area.

Bowood Country Park Calne, Wiltshire


We found blackening wax caps nestled in the moss under sweet chestnut trees.An edible mushroom bright red in colour with orange stems found in boggy areas.We saw a huge gaggle of geese grazing, where I moved far too close  to get a photo and they hastily gandered off.

Bowood Country Park Calne, Wiltshire


After walking around the lake we headed off to the little waster cascade and little grottos hidden in the wooded area of the park.This kind of landscape gardening along  with the faux temple was very typical of Victorian botanist.The temple is 4 pillars, a few steps up to a seating area, there’s no actual temple.But the view is just immense and breath-taking with the Autumnal air and colours.We could view Bowood House from where we sat but this was an extra charge so after picnic we spent two hours in the adventure playground.The kids played on huge swings, pirate ships, death slide, trampolines in the beautiful settings of Bowood Country Park.Me and Dee sat chatting away and drinking tea from the take away booth in the play ground.

It cost us £35.25 for a family ticket (2 adults + 2 children) and plus Mouse.I hate the fact that a family is classed as two adults and two children by the way.

It was a very enjoyable day even though a tad chilly.

I’m linking up with Fiona of Come Mill for Country kids.

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

And Jayne of Mum’s The Word for Closer To Nature.

Mum's the Word

Dirty Tricks – ASDA Spooky Scribes Challenge

Kip has written Dirty tricks for the ASDA Spooky Scribes challenge.

This is Mr.Clown, the spookiest clown that ever escaped from the circus.

This is Miss Vampire, the scariest, weirdest  vampire that ever even existed.They always played wicked tricks on each other.Every day.It was Halloween and they were both planning the biggest trick, the most menacing trick ever! Miss Vampire was putting mothballs and bat poo into 50 water bombs.And Mr Clown was sending plastic pencils.When they were used they turned into marigolds that squirt out clown wee.Yuk! Miss Vampire sent her screeching bats to drop her horrible water bombs on Mr Clown.But at the same time he was sending his friend Little Miss Vampire to deliver the fake pencils.The bats arrived at Mr.Clown’s cave.”What’s all the noise?” cried Mr Clown.Then a water bomb landed on his head.”Yuk, yuk, yuk.I’m going to bathe in frankfurters now.Curse you!”.All at the same time Miss Vampire was squirted with clown wee.”Er, I’m going to bathe in mothballs now!.
These are just two of the exchange tricks that happened in the deep dark wood.
If you like Kip’s Dirty Tricks spooky Scribes story please leave a comment.The story with the most comments in the Spooky Scribes challenge gets there story printed in book form and I get another voucher.


We were sent two Halloween costumes from the ASDA Hallowwen costume range, a note pad, coloured markers, face paints and a voucher in exchange for a review.

Slow Cooker Halloween Punch

As you probably know I love old cookery books with old recipes.Charity shops are my biggest source for such finds and nothing makes me happier to find an old book that’s been pre-loved and passed on to be found and loved again.

I found recipe in an 80′s slow cooker recipe book but as usual I’ve had a bit of a fiddle.The cinnamon sticks replaces ground cinnamon, I’ve used the apples differently from the original recipe but the alcohol content is the same.This punch is very warming and pleasant to drink and can be easily steadily drunk without realising it was having an effect on you.

Slow Cooker Halloween Punch

1 litre (2 pints) dry cider

1 cinnamon stick, broken into two

8 cloves 

2 apples, cored and thinly sliced

2 tbsps light brown sugar

1 orange sliced

150 ml (14 pint) gin

Preheat the slow cooker on HIGH.Pour the cider into the slow cooker.Place the cinnamon stick pieces and  cloves into a small piece of muslin and tie with string.Carefully hang the bag into the pot and leave the string to dangle over the side.Add the apple slices.Leave on HIGH for one hour.Remove the muslin bag, add the sugar, stirring until dissolved.Turn to LOW and add the orange slices.Stir in the gin just before serving.

slow cooker sunday


Joining in with Mediocre Mum’s Slow Cooker Sunday.




Samhain- The Celtic New Year


Samhain, The Celtic New Year is a day where we remember our ancestors who have gone before us.We think of relatives and friends who have died, particularly in the last year.It is a very sombre occasion very different from the commercial Halloween that is celebrated on this day.Halloween has origins in Pagan traditions but have lost it’s meaning and significance because of the commercialism we see today which does sadden me some what.As a parent I always explain with the children the  holidays and special days that have Pagan origins.

Last Saturday I went to Avebury Stone Circle for the Samhain Gorsedd.It’s the first time I have vivisted in two years so it was nice meet up with old friends.The circle lasted about an hour where the meaning of Samhain was explained, poems read and songs sung.We remebered those who had died that year when a stafff was passed around as names were called out.Cakes and mead also passed round where each person would say to the person stood next to them in the circle,  “May you never hunger” when offering the cake and “May you never thirst” when mead was passsed to the next person.

After the ritual I warmed with half an ale and shared bowls of chips my friends and we left Avebury to visit West Kennet Long Burrow not far from Avebury and in view of Silbury hill.West Kennet is a Neolithic burial site, it was very eerie inside but very pearceful at the same time.High on the hill we stayed inside for about 10 minutes taking in the atmosphere and looking at the stones and the chamber.

Samhain, The Celtic New Year celebrates the end of an old year and the beginning of a new one as the 8 festilvals are represented as a wheel.This is cyclic like the revolving Sun and the ebb and flow of the Moon’s cycles.Yule is the next festival celebrated on or around the 21st (this is based on the Sun’s position so it differs each year between the 20th-21st December) and was Christianised as Christmas.I talk about in more detail next month.