We had visitors this weekend. It was Apple day in Ford Park, something I have been looking forward to for a while. Being really rubbish however, I got all my timings off so we didn’t arrive till very late on. After parking in the town centre and walking (because I never thought to check if the field was being used as a carpark-honestly, not my day at all!) we met up with my Dad and Stepmum at the bouncy castle. The kids made a beeline for it as soon as it was spotted so we never made it around the car boot sale. They were also rubbish and didn’t want to do any of the activities we passed, so we wandered over to the medieval reenactment village where there were various crafts being displayed. There were 4 or 5 displays with people showing off their skills. There was some woodworking and I managed a quick peek at someone who was making a quilt, but all of us got distracted by a goat. There was a person from a farm there with some sheep, and a goat (not really a petting zoo as she was advertising how she sells the animals for meat) which the kids loved stroking.
After that we headed into the park where the gardens and cafe are. The children thoroughly enjoyed watching apples being pressed and turned into apple juice and they learned that the mash from the apples goes into animal feed and even used to make compost for the kitchen garden at the park. They also had the chance to toast marshmallows at a stall selling fire pits made out of recycled washing machine drums and office chairs, which they certainly enjoyed. To say that the stalls and exhibitions were varied would be an understatement. We wandered into the kitchen garden for a look at the latest fruit and veg on offer (you can buy plants at a very reasonable price here) before heading over to the orchard. The kids were mesmerised by all the butterflies. For about half an hour they barely moved while the butterflies landed on them, I swear it’s the quietest they have ever been! After this we headed up to even more stalls selling handmade crafts before letting the kids have a good long play on the park.
Later on we went out for a lovely meal at the Old Farmhouse before walking it off along the River Leven at the bottom of Ulverston Canal. Despite the cloud and the mist, it was gorgeous. We watched the geese and swans and even saw a heron flying around and landing nearby. You might remember at the Lantern Festival that Tommy was obsessed with trying to spot bats, but wasn’t lucky enough? Well tonight he saw 2! It was very exciting for him and just proved that even in a quick half hour walk, you can have a wildlife encounter. I think it has inspired us to have more after dinner walks and more mini adventures. After throwing some stones (of course) we had two very tired children so we headed home.