I do love days that just seem to sort themselves out. I had absolutely no plans for yesterday. I’d figured that Monkey would be worn out from school and we’d just spend a day together at home chilling out. He had a high temperature when he went to bed and ended up in with me in the early hours. So I had an idea that a quiet day would be in order. But I was wrong. Monkey woke up as bright as a button and the sun decided to join us too. Mummy can we spend Good Friday at Blenheim Palace please? Ok, yes, of course we can, although it may well be a bit busy as we’ll be leaving home later than we normally would. Ok, let’s go. Regular readers will know that Blenheim Palace is an old family favourite.
Monkey had spoken, and who was I to argue. I wasn’t prepared for a day out at all, so just grabbed his water bottle and a snack and off we went. The traffic heading towards Blenheim Palace was much busier than normal, not surprising given the lovely weather. Parking was interesting, I very nearly got stuck in the mud, the car behind me wasn’t so lucky.
We decided we’d head to the Pleasure Gardens to complete the Easter Egg hunt, with a promise of a train ride once we’d completed our mission. There were a few moans when Monkey realised that we were parked a little walk away, but the promise of chocolate at the end was all the incentive he needed to get marching.
As we live fairly close to the Palace we have annual passes which are great value for money, especially when you use Tesco Days Out vouchers towards them. We showed our passes, collected our Easter Egg Hunt sheet and set off on our adventure. This year we needed to find 10 different animals dotted around the Pleasure Gardens. Not as easy as it sounds, but we had lots of fun hunting them all down.
Not here Mummy.
Maybe they are hiding up here instead.
Umm, no luck so far.
Perhaps the animals are watching the Archery?
Or maybe they are hiding in the Butterfly House?
Could they be with the birds?
Or maybe they are hiding behind the hibiscus flowers?
I did have Monkey in fits of giggles when we entered the Butterfly House. I’m wearing my glasses all the time these days and I’d totally forgotten what happens to them in humid settings. That was me all steamed up!
We were having great fun collecting our animals on the Easter Egg Hunt. I was still very much in charge of writing, but Monkey loved sounding all the names out. How many more have we got to find?
Maybe we should look in the Marlborough Maze Mummy! Really? I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with mazes and I can get a bit panicky in them, the thought of going in without another adult didn’t fill me with happiness. Mad really, as we’ve been in the maze countless times over the last 6 years. Ok, let’s do it.
Well, I have now dubbed my son the Maze Genius. I don’t think I’ve ever walked around the maze so quickly, reached both bridges and got to the middle. Monkey made an excellent maze guide.
No visit to Blenheim Palace is complete for Monkey without a visit to the Bygones Museum, Mummy we really should check there too!
We were missing two of our animals but our tummy’s were telling us to stop for lunch. The queues were to be expected, but we really didn’t have to wait too long to be served and Monkey found us a table to eat at. We had a quick sandwich and a drink before heading back outside to retrace our steps. Where had we missed?
We had a few chuckles when we finally discovered our errant animals. Yes we’ve got all 10, and without anyone to help us either. Monkey was desperate to go on his beloved Winston train. Ok, well let’s go on the train, get an ice cream at the Palace and get the train back to pick up your Easter Egg before we head home. It’s warm and we don’t want it to melt do we.
We timed things perfectly and managed to get the last two spaces on the train. One very happy boy. For 50p each, each way, it’s a simple way to keep my little chap happy.
There was me looking forward to a lovely ice cream but Monkey had other ideas, no Mummy I want to go straight back on the train again. Grrr! Well that means we have to queue again and I don’t think we’ll get on this train. That’s ok, we can wait, and we did. We chatted away, and just enjoyed the glorious sunshine. It’s moments like this that I realise how much my son has grown up. Proper little conversations, waiting patiently, not moaning, enjoying the moment.
One more train journey and we decided that we’d pick up Monkey’s prize and head home.
We’d had a lovely, impromptu day and said hello to an old family favourite. We really must return again soon.
As for the chocolate? It was a rather lovely Easter Bunny, was being the operative word. It didn’t last long …..
So we’re off in search of more supplies at Stowe Landscape Gardens today! Another family favourite, and this time we’re taking friends with us too. Well its Easter, and you can never have too much chocolate …… right?!