I’ve already written at length about how much fun it is to stay at Coombe Mill with little ones when we visited previously, but spending time on the farm was such a central part of our Christmas week away – it deserves another post and a lot more photographs!
Having visited in the early Summer before, it was great to see the farm during a different season – although it’s been so mild, there was plenty of green and even spring flowers! We stayed in Water Mill cottage again – loving the old, quirky building and its glorious setting. I’d been a bit worried it would be cold in December, but the wood burning stove meant we were toasty all week (and gave my dad a chance to take on the key role of fire caretaker during our stay!)
The highlight of the day for Alex and Sophie was always the morning feed run – and we went every day rain or shine! A fellow guest during Christmas week has written brilliantly about what to expect on a feed run – worth reading her post if you’re thinking of a stay at the farm.
The tractor was a major highlight for Alex (don’t worry – the engine was turned off when he posed for the photos below – Farmer Nick isn’t that trusting!)
But he really is driving here (and was frankly terrifying as he sped around the car park steering rather erratically – thankfully he got a bit better and the trailer didn’t end up in the river!)
We couldn’t persuade Sophie to drive, but she loved to ride in the trailer!
Even Grandma rode in the trailer!
On the feed run, there are great trees for climbing and posing for photos:
There were some very noisy pigs who made light work of all our leftover food – the children found them hilarious!
There were chickens and even wallabies to feed:
We got up close and personal with the beautiful fallow deer – I love Sophie’s face here! She loved it all!
We looked forward to feeding the goats every day – and catching up again with Sprout who’d been a small kid when we visited before. All the children loved feeding Sprout!
My favourite place was the snug rabbit shed where the daily feed run always ends. With the weather rainy, we enjoyed keeping dry with the bunnies and feeding them grass. We even got to have cuddles with the baby rabbits – it was so tempting to bring a couple home with us!
The bad weather meant plenty of muddy puddles – so Sophie often gave up the chance to ride in the trailer to instead follow it via all the puddles! She was very methodical about ensuring she didn’t miss any along the route.
One of the things I personally love about Coombe Mill is that the predominant noise you hear (apart from happy children and occasionally hungry piglets) is the River Camel which flows through the farm. It has such a calming presence. We liked paddling through it and going back and forth over the little bridges over it.
We played lots of games of pooh sticks (although it flowed so fast it was tricky to see who’d won – so Alex claimed every round!)
And by its banks, we whiled away a rare sunny hour in the den building zone with some of the other guests!
So – did my Coombe Mill Christmas deliver what I so hoped it would in my little video? 100% yes. The children thrived being outside in the fresh air and the mud, they made friends and got involved with everything. I know my parents loved getting to spend so much time with their grandchildren and exploring a part of the country they didn’t know. And as for Matt and I – we properly unplugged from London life. We caught up on sleep and I managed to read three complete books during my time at the cottage! We even squeezed in a date night (to see Star Wars!).
Massive thank you again to Fiona and the Coombe Mill team for the opportunity to get away from it all!
Final Cornwall post to come tomorrow – and features the rare times we left the farm!
Your post goes to show how much family fun you can enjoy even when the days are short and the weather mixed. Such lovely photos from a very happy week, I’m so pleased Christmas with us lived up to your expectations and that you had a real break managing to switch off from life in London. It was a pleasure to have you here.
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