Helllooo – ooo – ooo, is anyone there, there , there? *Taps on screen* So, it’s, ahem, been a while. 2 months shy of 2 years in fact since I posted here, I’ve written a few posts over on my running blog but fair to say I’ve lost the urge to write.
But an awful lot has changed since that last post (still making awesome sourdough though which was the subject of that last post), we’ve moved countries for one. Which is the main subject for this post, I thought it was about time I shared a little update about this Welsh adventure we’ve embarked on and some of the plans we’re making for the future.
I’ve written in the past about the dream of finding a job that isn’t in an office, or a job that is more closely linked to my passion for running, cycling and the outdoors. The Lady of the Manor and I have also always dreamed of owning a smallholding and trying to live a simpler life. So at the end of 2017 as I found myself in a job that I really wasn’t enjoying and was becoming quite stressful we decided to stop talking about the dream and just get on and do it. After all, if it doesn’t work out we could always move back again.
So that’s the reason why we decided to make a change but where does Wales fit in? Quite simply Wales ticks a lot of boxes for us; the countryside is stunning and perfect for running and cycling, house prices are lower if you’re willing to be away from the major south coast cities (perfect for us) but there are still reasonable employment opportunities for us both. What we hadn’t expected to find was such great small towns full of life and independent shops or such a welcoming and fun community, particularly at school.
We have our very own Gerald Durrell in this house, I wouldn’t be surprised if Matilda ends up being a zoo keeper or a conservationist when she’s older. She has zero fear when it comes to animals and will happily stroll up to any of them, big or small, and say hello. This also applies to snakes, lizards and spiders much to the lady of the manor’s displeasure. When we visit Pets at Home she shows no interest in the cute rabbits and heads straight for the lizards!
A few weeks ago we went for a day out at Roves Farm which is just a few minutes from us; this is probably the children’s number one choice of place to visit at the moment. There are lots of these farm parks opening up but Roves Farm has to be one of the better ones, I like the simple, honest fun of visiting a place which is clearly catering for smaller children and wants them to get up close to all sorts of different farm animals. There are no cheesy cartoon characters or real commercialism to the place, instead they have simple tractor rides and a den building area. Perfect!
It of course all fulfils Matilda’s love of animals, she gets to stroke the noses of horses, cows, goats and sheep. She can sit and have a guinea pig on her lap in pets corner and stroke one of the free roaming chickens. Plus with this being spring time there is lots of baby animals around, many of whom need feeding.
So it was that we found ourselves rushing to the barn just in time to see little baby goats being handed to small children who were clutching bottles of milk. Flanked by parents who’d actually read when feeding time was and positioned their child in the right place to take part. Normally in these circumstances the child will then stand there until the whole bottle of milk is gone but, in a little farmyard miracle, the parents started asking their children to let someone else have a turn.
We shuffled our way forward and Matilda was handed a bottle which was closely followed by a small white goat desperate to keep having it’s lunch! Wow is all I can say, simply amazing to see the look on her and Henry’s faces as they held that bottle. A real live animal being fed by their little hands. I also loved the fact that the farm just let you get on with it, they of course keep an eye on what’s happening but you aren’t watched over and you’re left to get properly hands on.
The one downside of visiting a farm like this is Matilda has now uttered the words ‘Daddy…. I’d like a horse’.
P.S. This isn’t a sponsored post, we just like it at Roves Farm.