Mother Shipton’s Cave and Knaresborough

Mother Shipton

Mother Shipton is England’s most famous prophetess. As well as making traditional remedies she had the gift of foretelling the future.Known to locals as a witch, because of her rather large crooked nose and bent back, she earned her living by telling the future of those that paid for her words.

Ursula (Mother) Shipton was born, on the night of a terrifying storm, in a cave on the banks of the River Nidd in Knaresborough in 1488. As Ursula grew up she studied the forest, the flowers and herbs that were growing around her and she began to make remedies and potions with them.

The Prophecies

Mother Shipton foretold many predictions, some of them more famous than others are as follows:

Carriages without horses shall go,
And accidents fill the world with woe.
Around the world thoughts shall fly,

In the twinkling of an eye.
Said to predict cars, telephones, internet, satellites and planes.

Under water men shall walk,
Shall ride sleep shall talk:
In the air men shall be seen,
In white, in black and in green.

Said to predict, submarines, hot-air balloons or planes.

She is also said to have foretold the Black Death of 1665 and the Great Fire of London.

Whether she existed or not is perhaps not really important, but she leaves behind a cave and one of England's oldest tourist attraction, which people have been visiting since 1630.

The Walk

Mother Shipton’s cave is a wonderful place to visit. With a children’s play area, beautifully landscaped areas to picnic in, wonderful carvings among the trees and of coarse the cave and petrifying well, there is plenty of things to see and do for all ages.

The park is unique and unspoilt. As you enter through the visitors entrance you are instantly drawn to how beautiful the landscape is and drawn into the natural beauty of the surroundings. Once you pay your entry fee, you are given a wristband. This entitles you to entry into Mother Shipton all day long, so if you exit at the end of the walk and go across the bridge to visit the Castle, you can gain entry again with the wristband. Before visiting the cave and petrifying well, you walk along the mile long Sir Henry Slingsby’s Walk, which runs along the bank of the River Nidd.

Walk along the River Nidd to Mother Shiptons Cave
Sir Henry Slingsby Walk

Witches and Wizards

Throughout the year Mother Shipton’s attraction runs events and we were lucky enough to visit whilst they were holding the Witches and Wizards; a transformation into a mystical and magical event for all of the family. Where we visited the Wuthering Woodland, got sorted into a school house and met magic teachers. The boys got given a trail to follow and had to tick off certain things that they did along the route. The best of all had to be the sorting hat, where the boys got sorted into a house. Once all of the lessons that included Flying and Potions were completed they were awarded with a certificate of graduation to be a qualified Wizard!

Apart from the Witches and Wizardry event there are plenty of sights to see along the route.

Sir Henry Slingsby Walk

The first would be the first bridge that you come across. This is the bridge that Mother Shipton had said “The world shall end when the High Bridge is thrice fallen” It has already fallen twice! eek!

Carrying on you will pass by the oldest building in Knaresborough, just across the River, The Old Manor House. You will then pass under the magnificent Viaducts which was built for the Railway.

As you walk along you will hear the roaring of water as you pass by the castle mill and weir. This place once made the finest linen in the country, but now it is luxury riverside apartments.

Knaresborough Castle mill and weir

The pathway leads up to an adventure playground on the right and some fallen down tree trunks that people can hammer in their pennies for good luck.

Surrounding the Sir Henry Slingsby Walk are some magnificent tall trees that are possibly over three hundred years old. As you walk through the tree lined pathway you get the sense of mystery but calmness. Although these spiders are quite creepy.

Mother Shipton

It’s not long until you pass by the natural underground lake, this is the spring that provides the well with its magical waters.

The natural lake is about a mile underground. As the water comes to the surface it travels along a narrow and of porous rock called ‘aquifer’ and a huge amount of minerals are dissolved. Which is just right for turning objects into stone. Following some steps down and passing through some doors we soon stood in amazement as we saw the petrifying well doing its magic by turning everything it touches into stone.

For many centuries people believed that the well had healing powers and they used to carry their sick/dying relatives across the water in order for the magical, mystical waters to miraculously cure them.

The boys and I spent most of our time here, just watching the water fall down into the well. We were mesmerised by the natural beauty of it. I think we saw every shade of green going.

Behind the petrifying Well there is a wishing well, that is said that if you place your right hand into the water and make a wish then it will come true. We placed our hands into the cold, fresh water and made our wishes. You can not wish for money and obviously if you tell it to anyone it won’t come true.

Wishing well at mother shiptons cave
Making a wish

To the right of the wells is the cave itself. Looking around the cold, grim cave Its hard to believe that once a young woman gave birth to a baby in it and that baby would then make this place her home and sanctuary.

At the back of the cave is Mother Shipton herself

A statue of what Mother Shipton is believed to look like

Could imagine what it was like to spend your days in the dark, surrounded by the cold stone?

Once exiting the cave and well area, you can go back the way you came in or continue to end of the walk which is where the Museum and gift shop is located. Inside you can see a selection of items that have been petrified by the well and turned into stone.

I visited Mother Shipton cave and well as a child with my family and it has always been a place that, if visiting Yorkshire, I would take my boys back to experience. Mother Shipton’s is situated along the banks of the River Nidd in Knaresborough. The town is a beauty in itself and really makes a great day out for all ages. The area is unique and unspoilt and I have never seen anywhere so picturesque as here.

It is definitely a place that, hopefully, we will be visiting again.

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No Bake Energy Boosting Date Balls

Raw food and no baking is becoming very popular. I am always experimenting in different ingredients to make healthy nutritious snacks for my children.

When I was diagnosed with Cancer last year, I researched what food the body needs to help fight those bad cells. As a family we changed our diet and now consume more foods that are not baked and that are raw, with no added GMO and organic. Does it help? I don’t know but it tastes good and we do feel more healthier.

These energy balls are mostly made from medjool dates that are high in fibre and an energy booster. They are simple and quick to make and are super healthy.

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Ingredients:

  • 24 Medjool dates (or similar) de-pitted
  • 2 tbsp refined Coconut oil
  • 1tbsp maple syrup
  • 2tbsp ground almonds
  • 2 tbsp organic cacao powder
  • 3 heaped tbsp organic oats
  • 2 tbsp smooth peanut butter
  • 1tbsp chia seeds

Method:

Place the dates and coconut oil into a blender and blitz to a paste, add in a little bit of water to smooth it up.

Add in the peanut butter and ground almonds and blitz to combine it all.

Empty into a bowl. Mix in the cacao powder, maple syrup, oats and chia seeds.

Place in the fridge for half hour.

These balls are quite oily because of the coconut oil.

Take out of the fridge and take a heaped tsp and shape within the palm of your hands to make a ball.

Wrap each ball in some cling film and store in the fridge.

 

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These balls are ideal for grab and go food as they are stored in the fridge and wrapped in cling film it makes it easy for the children to grab a healthy snack when they need one.

They are high in fibre, minerals and vitamins promoting a healthy bowel. They also provide energy for people who suffer from anemia.

As long as you have the base of the dates and coconut oil you can experiment with adding in different ingredients. Our next one we are going to add in desiccated coconut or even roll the balls in the coconut or cacao powder. You could even add in dried fruit.

Thank you for reading 🙂

 

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Breakfast Survival

Do you struggle with your children in the morning to get them to eat their breakfast?

My mornings are like competing a mini obstacle course when it comes to organising the boys, with three boys all under the age of 11, it’s not an easy task!

  • First I have to awake them from their warm comfy beds, which is survival in itself having to enter their bedrooms (the youngest would happily stay there all morning)
  • Secondly I have to get them all washed and dressed
  • Then I have to prepare their pack lunches, trying to put a balance of healthy foods and snacks in them

Whilst I am doing this all 3 of them will be climbing up the banisters, hanging from door ways, shouting at each other and trying to get past me to the back door so they can go out for a morning jump on the trampoline (My house is like a Jungle full of monkeys)

  • Then I have to get them all to sit down at the  table to eat their breakfast cereal, but only after they have raided the cupboard for their choice of breakfast.

This is the only time in the morning that they are calm and sitting down and it’s the only time from when they have woken up that I may get a chance to sip my coffee (which by now is cold!)

  • Once breakfast has been consumed, teeth have been brushed, book bags been checked and any last minute work added to the homework/reading books we are ready to leave the house.

Having a nutritional breakfast is an important part of the day, it sets you up for the rest of the day. The boys need to eat something that is quick but filling to get them through their tough morning at school til lunch time. I always make sure that we have a good selection of cereals for the boys, our cupboard is always full of cereal boxes their favourite being Shreddies.

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According to new research by Nestle Cereals, 70% of families have less than an hour to get ready for school, I totally agree with this and the more children you have to get ready the harder the routine gets, But we always make time to eat out breakfast! Eating their cereal means that they are getting a good start to the day and taking in important nutrients like fibre, vitamins and minerals.

Did you know that Shreddies contain 8 vitamins and minerals, and are low in saturated fats and are a great source of fibre?

Did you know that Cheerios are a great source of 9 vitamins and minerals including iron, calcium and vitamin D?

Celebrity Mum, Marina Fogle, says: ” Just like most families, sometimes we find it hard to navigate the jungle of the morning routine. But, however busy we are, making time for a nutritious breakfast is a key. A bowl of cereal is not just quick and easy but a source of important nutrients my family needs to start the day in a nutritious balanced way.”

“My husband is best known for travelling to remote locations and being a survival expert, putting himself through his paces, but back at home I’m a survival expert as a mum!”

To support other parents looking for help to survive the jungle of family breakfast, Marina has teamed up with Nestle Cereals to launch ‘Breakfast Survival Guide’, full of tips and advice.

 HOW ELSE CAN I GET MY ESSENTIAL VITAMINS?

How about eating some bugs! Did you know that bugs, grubs and plants from the jungle are packed with vitamins and minerals!

Kids love eating weird and wacky things, A Mopane Caterpillar is a good source of iron and the root of a Bulrush might be a great way get your fibre, or you could eat 100 Jewel Beetles for a great source of calcium.

We was invited along to A breakfast Survival event run by Nestle Cereals, where we got to go on an exciting exhibition through the jungle of the family breakfast routine. The boys had a blast meeting some wonderful creepy crawlies, tasting some of the alternative choices of a jungle cereal and we even got to meet Marina Fogle and renowned nutritionist, Juliette Kellow who were around to answer any of our questions.

Jak tasting a BBQ bamboo worm
Jak tasting a BBQ bamboo worm

 

Holding a Millipede
Holding a Millipede

 

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What breakfast would you prefer?

The eldest and I tasted all of the bugs, they wasn’t as bad as i thought they would be but we still would prefer to eat a bowl of cheerios any day! Whilst we was tucking away into our nutritional helping of bugs, Joseph was sitting in the next room tucking into a bowl of his favourite Shreddies.

Not only does Nestle Cereal make the perfect choice of breakfast but they are also ideal to put into pack lunches for the children to snack on.

Do you have any tip to make mornings that little bit easier? Why not share them on twitter using the hashtag #BreakfastSurvival

We was invited along to the event for the purpose of this post, thank you to Red Consultancy and Nestle for a lovely interesting and yummy afternoon.

 

 

 

 

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Vitamin D Day 31 March 2013

FIRST UK VITAMIN D DAY LAUNCHED TO EDUCATE PARENTS

Vitamin D Day to shine spotlight on vitamin D

 At the dawn of British summertime 2013, growingupmilkinfo.com launches the UK’s first Vitamin D Day (31 March) to raise awareness about the importance of the vitamin for toddler development. I recently wrote about how we get our recommended dose of the sunshine vitamin Here

With a recent survey highlighting that the majority of UK mums (91%)  don’t know the recommended daily intake of vitamin D for toddlers, Vitamin D Day has been created to address misconceptions, and educate the nation’s parents, about the role of diet in providing the essential vitamin.

Health expert and ITV’s This Morning regular, Dr Chris Steele, who is backing Vitamin D Day, stressed the importance of dietary intake of vitamin D for toddlers. He said: “Many parents don’t know how much vitamin D is needed for the normal growth of toddler bones and teeth.

growing up

He added: “The low levels of vitamin D in toddler diets is a growing health concern and we need to ensure that our toddlers are getting the best from their diets. Presently, the average British toddler is only getting 27% of their recommended daily dietary vitamin D intake ii and the sun cannot be relied upon alone to fulfil a toddler’s vitamin D needs.”

Vitamin D Day aims to educate Brits on the food sources, like oily fish, liver and eggs, as well as foods and milks fortified with vitamin D, such as fortified breakfast cereals and Growing Up Milk, to help top-up vitamin D levels in our little ones’ diets.

To support Vitamin D Day growingupmilkinfo.com has launched its new website which includes vitamin D rich recipes for toddlers and expert health advice and tips, as well as a vitamin D Q&A video with Dr Chris Steele.

 

For more information on the importance Vitamin D and toddler nutrition, visit www.growingupmilkinfo.com.

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The Sunshine Vitamin

Children need Vitamin D to help their bones develop properly, grow and stay strong. Vitamin D helps our bodies absorb calcium which helps us to build strong teeth and bones. A deficiency in Vitamin D at an early age can lead to a child developing rickets (a bone deformity), delayed motor skills, aches and pains and future bone fractures.

We get about 80% of our Vitamin D recommendation from the suns Ultra Violet (UVB) rays, when the sunshines on our skin our bodies make the Vitamin D, although if the sun is low lying or it is a cloudy, foggy day then our bodies will struggle to make the Vitamin so we need source it from other materials either by suppliments as an adult or from a food source.

Regardless of age a child’s Vitamin D daily requirement is 10 micrograms/400iu

Good Sources of Vitamin D:

  • Oily fish like Salmon and Tuna
  • Egg Yolk
  • Orange Juice
  • Fortified Milk (Formula)
  • Breakfast Cereal
  • Meat
  • Fortified Margarine

How we get our Vitamin D:

Get Active: 10-15 minutes of play a day outside, receiving sun exposure on your arms and legs should be enough for your Vitamin D requirement, remember to apply sunscreen on really hot days. 2-3 days a week during the summer months (April-October) should be enough to get the sufficient amount of Vitamin D.

Eat Healthy: Eating a balanced diet which is rich in dairy and fish

Formula Milk: Infant formula milk is already fortified with Vitamin D and if your child is drinking about a pint (500ml) a day then they will be receiving enough of their daily Vitamin D without having to supplement their diet.

Oliver my 19 month old boy still drinks two bottles of 6oz growing up milk a day, one in the morning after breakfast and one in the evening just before bed, so I ensure he gets the rest of his recommended dosage by giving him a balanced diet. We eat fish twice a week, once on a Friday and another day it will be tuna with pasta, which Oliver prefers to eat over chicken, he drinks lots of orange juice and loves his breakfast cereal so I make sure that it is one that is fortified with Vitamin D. Oliver is a very active boy who is full of energy and is always running and climbing I want to make sure that he stays strong and healthy so he doesn’t at an older age have weak bones. Oliver loves to be in the great outdoors and the weather is nice he will spend most of his time digging playing in the garden, if the suns rays are strong I do take precaution and rub suncream onto his skin, although in order for our bodies to get the sufficient amount of vitamin D from the rays the exposure needs to be without sunscreen.

How would you recommend that we receive our Vitamin D requirement?

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