A chilly Sunday at Chartwell

I can’t read any more articles or social media about Covid-19. It’s taken over my entire life in the past fortnight with my job being completely consumed with responding to it (being Director of Comms in a university based within a hospital has certainly been an interesting challenge!) and my freelance business taking a hit as contracts are indefinitely postponed. And of course, at home the impact is just beginning to be felt with Alex and Sophie now stuck at home with Matt and I for the foreseeable future. How we combine working full time with two little people, I don’t know!

But I do know that we are lucky – we are all healthy, we have understanding employers and the home we are stuck in is a happy one (and has an adequate supply of toilet roll!).

Nevertheless, I feel like my brain is going to explode if I keep thinking about what is going on – so tonight I am watching West Wing and looking at photographs from when we were still able to explore the world around us.  I haven’t written a blog post for a while – it’s been just too busy. But I’m going to try and keep it up in the coming weeks to share what we get up to as we socially distance ourselves!

Before that though, I just found a few pictures from a thoroughly lovely Sunday we had two weeks ago. After a run of city weekends packed full of engagements and activities with the children, we suddenly had a free Sunday. So we jumped in the car and headed away from the city.

After a delicious Sunday roast in the Tally Ho pub near Knockholt, we drove to Chartwell – the family home of Winston Churchill. It’s years since we’ve visited so it was such fun to explore the grounds anew. The children ran off ahead in their wellies, following trails and finding little playgrounds and bridges to explore. I loved seeing them running wild again in the mud!

After a rainy morning, the sky cleared and the grounds and garden looked so beautiful. If you look carefully you can see Chartwell house in the distance below:

The children led the way, following the National Trust map in order to find the treehouse.

Along the way, they found a World War Two bomb crater that’s been creatively transformed into a natural play area:

The treehouse was worth the woodland walk – imagine having this in your garden to play in! The children loved climbing the ladders and sliding down the slide, and I loved learning more about Churchill’s children and the mischief they got up to!

We followed more trails through the woods, finding more distractions along the way:

There was even a camping area complete with hammocks and shelters – apparently Canadian troops camped here during World War Two! Alex and Sophie tried to swing as high as they could in the hammocks without falling out, and thankfully didn’t end up with a face full of mud!

Eventually, we came out of the woods and ended up by the lakes and lawns.

Alex loved meeting the geese and was thrilled to spot some the unusual black swans that live on the estate (I failed to take their photograph!)

After our muddy walk, we enjoyed a final wander around the more formal gardens before heading back into the city.

Alex and Sophie walking around ChartwellIt’s amazing having places like this just 45 minutes from our city home – and I just can’t wait to get back outside to explore more of them. But for the time being, we’ll make do with adventures in our house, our tiny garden, and occasionally out on our bikes…

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