Pumpkin Picking at Hurley’s Farm

Pumpkin picking is something I have only ever done in a supermarket, but it is becoming increasingly popular for families to visit local farms and to pick their own.

After seeing lots of pictures on social media last Halloween, I really wanted to try it out for myself this year. Living in London doesn’t help as most of the farms/patches are quite rural so you will need a car to get to them.

We found one out in Battlesbridge, Essex called Hurley’s Pumpkin Forest. Not only was the entry into the farm free but they also had fun family games area for the children to join in on.

As we arrived we quickly noticed how busy it was, there was ample of space for parking on site but it was filling up fast and people were having to park out on the road. We managed to find a spot on the farm and with two very excited boys off we went in search of our pumpkin.

To get to the pumpkin field you had to pass through the games area, which I might add was a lovely little surprise. I never quite expected there to be so much for the children to do. They got to

  • Find their way through the Witches Maze

  • Have a go at pumpkin bowling (no pumpkin was used just a ball)

  • Throw a welly boot at a target at Wizard’s Welly Wanging
  • Aim for the holes in Pumpkin Wizzbee

  • Ride in the Pumpkin carriage pulled by a pony
  • Paint your own pumpkin (£3)
  • Enter the huge maize maze (for a fee)
  • Plus plenty more games to try

The children were given a ‘Things I did today’ card as they entered the farm with all of the fun things to do on it and they got to tick each one off once they had done them.

There is also a refreshment cart selling spiced pumpkin hot chocolate, as well as other refreshments like hot dogs and waffles.

The pumpkin fields are actually where the Christmas trees are being grown and the pumpkins are scattered around for you to choose from. There were crates that offered different varieties of pumpkin as well as squash. We went quite late in the day and these crates were pretty empty and also the pumpkins for us to choose from were not that big, but I imagine there to be a better choice and variety if you arrive earlier in the day.

I was a little disappointed as I had in mind that we got to, actually, pick our own pumpkins from the ground. But, we still had fun looking around the fields searching for our forever Halloween pumpkin.

Our pumpkin cost us £3 , I think my son was happy with his purchase. Beats shopping in a  supermarket any day!

There were also plenty of wheelbarrows scattered around for you to use and fill up till your heart’s content, or in our case have a well-earned rest at the end of a delightful and fun day

Hurley’s Pumpkin Forest is open until 31st October, 9-5 and is free to enter. You only pay for the pumpkins that you buy and any additional activities that you want to try.

 

 

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Make Your Own Mouthy Trick Or Treat Bags for Halloween

Are you ready for Halloween? Whether you’re ready or not, I can bet that your children are already planning what they are going to wear and how they want the house decorated ready for the many trick or treaters that will be knocking on your door.

Help your children collect their goodies in these spooky trick or treat bags. Which are also ideal to give out to any spooky guests that may turn up at your door

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They are simple to make and a fun activity for the children to do over the half term

You will need:

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  • Paper bags
  • Acrylic paints or felt pens
  • Scissors
  • Black marker pen
  • Pencil

First cut away the handle from the top of the bag

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Then place your hand on top of the bag, in the middle with your fingertips touching the top and mark with a pencil either side of your fingers (little and pointing finger)20171015_113139

Now draw in your monsters mouth – this will be your new handle

Once your mouth in place you can then draw your monster. Be as spooky as you like

Why not draw a zombie monster or a spider?

Choose the colour and paint your monster, think bright colours like; orange, purple, green and red.

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You can design both sides with different characters or just do one side.

Add sparkle in with some glitter, paint it with glow in the dark paint or even some googly eyes

Now you’re ready to fill the bags with goodies

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Have a spooktacular Halloween 🙂

 

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Shortbread Witches Fingers Recipe

With Halloween coming up these scary little shortbread biscuits, shaped to look like fingers would go down well with the children and would look fabulous on any spooky table of party food.

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They are easy to make so the children can join in.

Ingredients:

  • 150g Plain Flour
  • 50g refined caster sugar
  • 80g Butter
  • drop of vanilla essence

Method:

  • Sift the flour into a bowl, add the caster sugar and then the butter. Cut the butter up into small pieces, it makes it easier to combine with the flour and sugar
  • Using your fingers combine the mixture, by crumbling it between your fingers.
  • Mould into a ball and leave in the fridge for an hour.
  • Divide the dough into 10 little balls.

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  • Shape each dough ball into a rectangle shape. Using a knife make a slit all the way down the middle and add in some strawberry jam. Mould the dough back together and into finger shape.

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  • Use a spoon or a knife to mark in the knuckles and use an almond piece for the finger nail. You can use a little jam to keep it in place.

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  • Place in the oven at 160F for 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on them. Remove when turning golden brown around the sides

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If the fingers spread out a little whilst in the oven, remove and reshape using the edge of 2 knifes to push it back into shape.

Happy Halloween!

Enjoy 🙂

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Spooky Marsh Farm #countrykids

Halloween isn’t only for trick or treating!

Our Halloween day was special as not only was we spending it with Nanny but we was going to visit Marsh Farm in South Woodham Ferrers in Essex. The boys got dressed up into their Halloween costumes all ready to spook anyone they would meet.

Marsh farm is an Animal Adventure park in Essex which is set on over 30 acres of beautiful farm land, The farm offers you a chance to meet and cuddle the animals, feed the birds through the aviary, take a pony ride, enjoy a spin on a tractor, play in the outdoor fun adventure park and if the weather is wet and cold the children can run off some steam in the indoor soft play area whilst the adults can relax and drink some lovely hot chocolate. Through out the year Marsh Farm put on some special events like Teddy Bears Picnic, Christmas Market and Wizards and Witches.

We visited the farm on 31st October, the boys were all dressed up in their halloween outfits and couldn’t wait to have some spooky fun on the farm.

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As soon as we arrived the boys were given a treat bag as they were dressed up, it included some sweets and some spooky stickers. We made our way to the witches cabin to take part in the spellmakers challenge, the boys joined in adding things to the couldron to produce a special spell in which they were rewarded with a bag of rainbow drops.

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Next we went to meet the goats, these were Olivers favourite animals ans he really enjoyed feeding them the food that we had bought from the visitors centre, he even tried to kiss them

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We walked around the farm looking at the animals and birds, we saw Reindeers, Alpacas, Llamas, Owls, Rabbits, Guinea pigs, Pigs, Donkeys and Ponies. There were actors walking around all dressed up Cello the Wizard, Winifred the Witch, Stilts walker and Edward and Mildred unfortunately we couldn’t get close enough to see them as Oliver was very scared of them.

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The farm was offering so many things to do like pumpkin carving, ghost train rides, magic show and monster crafts.

The boys enjoyed playing in the soft play area and riding on the mini tractors, milking a cow and playing in the outdoor adventure area where they dug up the sand with the diggers.

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The Farm is a lovely place to visit and i’m sure we would have done so much more if the weather was slightly better.

I’m linking up with Coombemills countrykids linky, why not pop on over to see what other fabulous activities you can get up to in the great outdoors and while your there check out Coombe Mill Farm website for a brilliant family holiday.

Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Glowing Spooky Eyes

Looking for a quick and easy Halloween craft to do with the children?

Scare your unwanted guests on Halloween Night with these simple but brilliant Glow in the Dark Spooky Eyes.

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Use the inner cardboard tubes from the toilet or kitchen roll to make these fabulous spooky eyes

You will need;
Cardboard tubes
Glow in the dark sticks
Scissors
String to hang

Cut out the shape of your eyes on the cardboard tube.
Place some string through the tube so you can it from a branch on a tree or on your porch
Place a glow in the dark stick inside the tube and watch your eyes glow!

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You can also leave the spooky eyes in hedges or bushes 🙂

Happy Halloween!

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