This week, my love for the outside peaked. My best friend got us tickets to Country File Life. I’m not going to deny that initially, I humoured her a lot! I think I was expecting bird watching pods and silence but it was the absolute opposite. We had an amazing time!!!
It was held in Oxford at Blenheim Palace, a huge, beautiful location. The grounds were stunning and perfect for Country File Live. We followed the amazing directions and arrived ready for opening at half 9, we took a long walk to the opening gates. We could have used the tractor shuttle but it would have been a nightmare with the two pushchairs. Jenson was so excited by the passing tractors and stopping to wave that he didn’t even mumble about us not getting on it!
Once we were in, I realised the scale of the event! It was massive. I immediately saw archery for adults and children, fishing, kayaking and organisations such as the RSPB, the Woodland Trust and the National Trust to name a few. Everywhere I looked, it went on for miles and miles. There were tents full of crafts, clothes, food and drink as well as art, photography and homeware. There were shows and show grounds for dogs, birds, horses, farming and even mechanical.
We walked up the middle initially and we were welcomed by the smell of amazing food. As predicted, this event was full of small businesses selling their finest. You name it, it was there, Thai food, carvery, hog roast, pizza, pasta, BBQ, sandwiches, pizza… the list went on and on. There were the most amount of champagne and prosecco stalls, as well a pimms and cider. They even had a pub garden area. For us though, we are all about the tea! That was limited!! We searched for ages and finally found some tea, a coffee and cake stall… the queue was huge! As we moved around we noticed more and finally sat down and had a cuppa, the Woodland Trust had an amazing tent for tea and even gave away an “invite a tree to tea” pack for children.
As we explored throughout the day, there was so much to do for children and families. Most of the charities and companies were aimed at exploring and making things and the children had so much to do that they could take home. Jenson was in his element all day, he learnt so much, had so many experiences and took it all in. Here are some of the things he did, although I am sure I forgot some:
- Milking a cow
- Collecting eggs
- Petting farm
- Holding a chuck
- Stroking rabbits
- Exploring owl pellets
- Bug hunting
- Making seed balls
- Friendship bracelets
- Toasting marshmallows
- Making a fire
- Driving tractors
- Stroking a micro pig
- Making a bug hotel
- Investigating moths and their wings and patterns
- Pond dipping
- Climb a tree
- Making a den
In particular, the Woodland Trust was amazing as was the National Trust. They had a huge area for children to work towards their “50 things to do before I am 11 and 3/4″. It was heaven for any child and family. Adam Henson also had a lovely area for farming with young children, it was really hands on and the children got to explore different areas. The day was filled with so many experiences, Jenson enjoyed every aspect of it, he loved seeing the tractors and the farming in action.
There was such a variety. Jenson tried so many things, Country File Live provided him with so many opportunities and different things to explore. We finished the day by collecting pizza and eating on the grass by our cars. The children were shattered and the legs of the adults ached. Jenson had walked and ran around all day!
It was a fantastic day and we will be back next year.