Coombe Mill Magic

Coombe Mill Magic

I’ve longed to take Monkey to Coombe Mill in Cornwall ever since I discovered the Country Kids linky 2 years ago when I first started blogging.  I just knew that he would love it.  Last year, following a conversation with Iona at Redpeffer I saved some pennies and booked for us to stay for the first week of our Easter holiday this year.
Iona and her family were already booked in, so I knew Monkey would have friends and it would be nice for us adults to share experiences too.  Of course, when you are really looking forward to something, there is always a danger that it won’t live up to expectations.  Would being on a farm work for us?  Would self catering work for us?  Would both families get on ok for a week together? How would Monkey cope with it all?  It would be our first proper family holiday, excluding our trips to Spain to visit family and we needed a good break.
I spent the weeks beforehand talking to Monkey about the feed run, Farmer Nick and Fiona and the Train rides and showed him the Coombe Mill blog, videos etc. As soon as he saw pictures of Rocky the Goat his little heart melted and he just become so excited.
So finally the day came and we made the journey down to Cornwall, arriving in thick fog – uum! Oh well, the weather wasn’t going to dampen our spirits, we were all just happy to be on holiday.

As we drove down the country lane to Coombe Mill itself, I swear something magical happened. From the moment we parked the car Monkey was a different child.  He was straight on to the little tractor outside Reception chatting away to me.  All very different with him being so reserved normally in new environments.  He was shy when we met Fiona, but he was off, exploring Honeysuckle Cottage, deciding on which bedroom and bed would be his, which would be teddy’s. Then he discovered the toy room.  Is this for me too Mummy?  Yes Monkey, you can do whatever you like in there (within reason!).

Coombe Mill Magic

Iona and family arrived not long after us and the children were excited to see each other.  They have stayed before so knew the ropes and where the best fun could be had.  Monkey was off without a backwards glance.  Wow! Playground – check,
Coombe Mill Magic
indoor play barn – check, fairy garden – check,
Coombe Mill Magic

second Playground – check.  It was wonderful to see the Coombe Mill magic take hold of him and the change in him didn’t actually seem to be just because he was with people he knew.

Coombe Mill Magic

There was no train ride on the first evening and I was fully expecting that it would take half the holiday for Monkey to warm up to the feed run.  I couldn’t see him sitting on the trailer as Farmer Nick drove around and he’d never fed any animals at any of the many farms we’ve visited.  Well, that boy was in the mood to prove his mother wrong!  Straight on the trailer he got, he may not have fed the animals straight away but he certainly was by the end of the week.  
Coombe Mill Magic
Trying to find eggs in the chicken coups was clearly a highlight for him.  
Coombe Mill Magic
But more amazing than all of that was the fact he was doing it alone.  He’d be straight into the trailer each morning, and as soon as the tractor stopped, he’d be off, at the head of the queue for each pen.  Not necessarily with his friends, showing true independence and rarely looking for either myself or Daddy P.  I was totally redundant from day one.
It was a revelation for all of us.  I could relax, my son was really going to enjoy the week.  He was coming into his own and that was just the beginning. Again, with the train rides I was sure there would be a little reluctance to join in for the first few days.  Wrong!  First ride, first child on! Didn’t even look at us.  Blimey! That was him attached to the train for the week.
Coombe Mill Magic
Laughing, having a wonderful time, taking turns, enjoying himself, pulling the signal, with the biggest smile on his face.  Just magical to watch.
Coombe Mill Magic
Now trampolines have always been a big no go area with Monkey.  Friends and my brother all have them, but as soon as there is the slightest whiff of a bounce Monkey would end up in tears, that was if we’d ever got him to sit on one in the first place.  But the Coombe Mill magic sprinkled over him again.  I was soon to find him in the play barn (having gone off with Iona and her son) I told you, I really wasn’t needed, it was a new experience.  There was Monkey, in the play barn, jumping up and down on one of the trampolines.  Wow!  Not only was he jumping up and down, he was enjoying it, laughing.  Look at me Mummy!
But little trampolines were not the end of this part of the magic.  Oh no!  It wasn’t long before my little ‘never do anything remotely scary’ Monkey was inside the bigger trampoline with friends! Jumping around, still having fun, still laughing.  Is this really my son???
Coombe Mill Magic
We all loved our holiday, it was very relaxing, no phone signal meant Daddy P had no option but to switch off, he couldn’t be reached – result!  We had company when we wanted it and could just as easily be alone.  I got really emotional, watching Monkey having such a wonderful, carefree holiday was just the best thing to see.  A little part of me always feels guilty that for reasons beyond my control, he is an only child.  To see him running around for a week with friends was just lovely.  He’s very good at keeping himself entertained but there’s nothing really like playing silly games with other children.  Playing them with your parents isn’t the same.  Having a brother, as annoying as he could be (aren’t they all) I know how lovely it is to have someone to share adventures with.  It was so nice for Monkey to have a little bit of that.
We arrived at Coombe Mill with great expectations and left full of wonderful memories.  My son let go, relaxed, tried new things and had the holiday I really wanted him to.  He fed his beloved Rocky, who he still talks about on a daily basis. 
Coombe Mill Magic
All you can ever want for your child is for them to be happy and confident enough to enjoy life and try new things.  I hope our holiday gave Monkey the belief to bring some of his new-found confidence into his every day life.  I don’t imagine that he will ever be the life and soul of the party, to be picked for the lead in school plays, but I do hope he can open up a bit and let his voice and personality to be heard.  
The Coombe Mill Magic had a wonderful effect on Monkey, and the memories will stay with me forever.
Coombe Mill Magic

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

26 thoughts on “Coombe Mill Magic

  1. So wonderful hearing how he came out of his shell, and hopefully the confidence and independence will continue.

    I think the ability to enjoy time on their own is great being an only child (I know N loves playing and pottering on his own), and it’s often noted by nursery staff at how well he can cope on his own, but having friends and cousins nearby for us is brilliant. It means N gets the best of both worlds really. So it’s great that Monkey has close friends to explore with.

    1. Interesting. Our preschool has commented on something similar with M. He knows what he wants to do and is completely happy to do the activity on his own and will later join with the other children if they do something that catches his imagination. Yet he has an older sister at home!

      Mary, glad you all had a good time and the trampolines were a success.

      1. I guess with a sibling, sometimes they want time away to do their own thing?

        I think the comment on N was in comparison to a lot of the others who just follow everyone else around, but don’t go off on their own out of choice. It’s good to know they can do both.

  2. I hope he will be able to take so much from this holiday into the everyday-it was lovely to see him in action and feeling able to join in with gusto. I find it hard to believe this is the same boy I first met a year ago! And I’m so pleased for you too-I know how much it means x

  3. What a lovely post. Monkey really looks like he was in his element, I’m so glad you all had such a lovely holiday. I really have to go to Coombe Mill sometime, it looks idyllic.

  4. Awe, it looks like you all enjoyed it so much and how cool monkey accomplished some firsts. I would love to take the monkeys one day and will do it (somehow!)

  5. This holiday looks absolutely magical! I’m bookmarking this place for when we next need a holiday.

    So glad you all enjoyed it!

  6. This post made me smile and cry all at once, it really was a magical week and I so enjoyed seeing Monkey develop and hear your daily stories of all the new first time experiences he had enjoyed. Rocky is now out in the field by day and night but still comes for a cuddle whenever anyone calls his name and twice a day for his bottle. gorgeous photos, don’t forget to link up for Country Kids!

  7. This is so lovely and really makes me want to visit ASAP. I’m so glad Monkey loved it, it sounds like he had an amazing experience, which in turn made it fantastic for you. I better start saving.

    Thanks for linking up with Small Steps Amazing Achievements :0)

  8. Ah, this is such a lovely post to read. How wonderful that Monkey felt so relaxed and comfortable there and found his confidence. It must have been the most amazing thing for you to watch. I’m so glad you had such a good time x

  9. Sounds like the perfect holiday! It is wonderful that Monkey was able to be so comfortable at Coombe Mills!

  10. What a beautiful post. It’s amazing what being at Coombe Mill, surrounded by things to do, animals and other children did for him. I really hope that confidence continues.
    We called into Coombe Mill for the morning last year and I must say it really does feel like a magical place. None of my kids wanted to go and were all grumpy about being dragged out to see ‘one of mummy’s blogging friends’, but they all loved it and want to call in again this year!

  11. It looks fantastic, I am always so envious when I see the pictures as our children love going to the farm. Monkeys face says it all really, just pure happiness 🙂 #countrykids

  12. I always thought thru the photos that Coombe Mill exuded a form of magic and you’ve just confirmed it!
    Sounds like you had the most amazing holiday and that Little Monday is growing in confidence every day
    Looks wonderful xx

  13. There is something very magical about coombe mill. sounds like you had a wonderful time and i just love your photos x

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