Autumn is in full swing now and even our oak tree has begun to succumb to the shorter days and cooler weather. The ground beneath it is a mottled brown and green of fallen leaves and lanky grass.
The oak tree isn’t the only bit of the garden gearing up for winter. We’ve been out building a hog-house for our resident hedgehog and the bird feeders have become noticeably more active, with the food has been going down pretty fast. We have moved both feeder several times to deter the squirrels from munching all the peanuts. The clever things took to launching themselves off the bird bath instead to get onto it so we moved the bird bath (it was heavy). For a while they were foxed but then instead broke into the greenhouse through a small slit in a window and helped themselves to the bird food in its bags making a huge mess. Turns out they also have a penchant for sunflower seeds…
October has been a really busy month for us on the social and travel front. Roo turned 3 years old two weeks ago, so we had a woodland themed mini party with an owl birthday cake which was fortunately easier to make than I first suspected! The recipe was from BBC Good Food – love that site! On her actual birthday we headed to London and made good use of the London Passes we had been sent. If you’re heading to the Big Smoke any time soon then give them a look – they represent fairly good value for money if you’re planning on spending a couple of days or longer seeing the sights and enjoying all the London has to offer.
At the start of the month we had the privilege to return to Pembrokeshire for a long weekend where this time we saw seal pups!. Staying at Asheston Eco Barns we discovered not only a fantastic (and eco-friendly) place for a family holiday in this part of the world but also met Karen, the owner, who was fascinating to talk to as she has done what I always wished I could do myself – namely abandon the conventional day-job for a self-employment adventure in a beautiful and rugged part of the UK. If you’ve not taken a look at the review yet then do!
The wedding of good friends up in Scotland took us on our first proper road trip as a family of four. We managed to fit North Yorkshire (staying at super-scenic Ox Pasture Hall Hotel), Loch Lomond, Midlothian and the Peak District into 7 days of road-travel with plenty of short walks thrown in. The Peaks was well worth the extra day at the end – I got to taste my first ever Bakewell Pudding (not the tart) and we tested out the kiddies walks pack ‘Making Tracks’ for the Peak District which I’ve been wanting to do for a while. I’ve not had a chance to write up much of the trip yet but keep your eyes out – it’s coming soon. In the meantime, here’s a quick overview!
With the end of October upon us, we enjoyed a very autumnal weekend this weekend. Roo embraced Halloween and got very excited about dressing up as a witch and we had a fantastic autumal wander in Henley deer park – somewhere I’ve been meaning to go for ages. Later in the evening we went to see fireworks and Roo had so much fun at the mini fairground. So did I – first time I’ve been on a fairground ride since the girls were born!
November is going to be action packed too – we don’t have a single free weekend! We are off on an exciting weekend to the Isle of Wight in a few weeks (any good tips on where to go, let me know) and I am heading to Blogfest – my first ever bloggers conference. I’m a bit apprehensive about this new venture – not least because it is being held in Kings Place in London. The last time I was there was dressed in a suit and heels in my capacity as an Operations Manager for the railways in pre-Baby Routes days. How times have changed!
What have you been up to this October? I hope you’ve had plenty of time to get outside and enjoy autumn. If you’d like a heads up on ideas for outdoor fun and walking in November as well as special offers, don’t forget to sign up to the monthly newsletter which is coming out in the next week.