10 free activities for children during the holidays.

10 free activities for children during the holidays.

10 free activities for children during the holiday

 

Keeping children busy during the holidays can be so hard. So, I thought I would share a list of 10 free activities for children during the holidays, that I have loved to do with my own.

Children tend to get bored because they don’t know what is available for them to do. As an adult, how many times have you sat doing an activity with your children, they then walk away and you’re still sat there doing it? I know I do.

The following activties can be done with any age group, if they’re bored and you join in with them they will enjoy it.

1. Visit Tilgate Park 

Now, anyone that knows me knows I love to visit Tilgate Park and Nature Reserve because it has so much do. You can walk round the lake, visit the animals, play in the park, go boating on the lake, fishing, cycling, Go Ape and more. The list goes on. Parking is available but it does fill up fast in the summer. There are plenty of toilets plus a cafe in the walled garden and Smith & Western restaurant.

2.  Sleep out on the trampoline 

I’m not sure who loves this more me or my children. Some parents leave their children to it but this is where I used to get my best nights sleep. Fill the trampoline with blankets, putting some underneath you because it can get chilly in the middle of the night.  Add some duvets, pillows and fairy lights then lay back and relax. Eventually, we turn off the fairy lights to enjoy the stars and maybe even a comet or shooting star. In the morning my children then get up and play in the garden, leaving me to sleep! (This never normally happens!)

3.  Watch a sunset or star gazing

 There are some fantastic places to go in West Sussex for star gazing. It can be done anywhere near your house, as long as there are no lights to stop your night vision. The perfect time is during the no moon phase, as the sky will be at its darkest. It takes about 30 minutes for your night vision to work so keep torches to a minimum but if you do need one try to use one with a red filter. A great website is Go Star Gazing as you can view on a map which local places are good for viewing the stars plus it will tell you which phase the moon is in.

4.  The beach

There are so many gorgeous beaches in Sussex. I think my favourite is Goring. It has free parking, two amazing cafes right on the beach (Sea Lane Cafe and the Bluebird Cafe, the latter allows dogs) which are perfect for walking between and has beautiful sunsets.

5.  Lancing Sea Front 

We love to head over to Lancing in the evenings, as it’s normally quiet and is a great place to take scooters. There is plenty of parking, plus a large green for playing rounders or having a picnic. The The Perch Restaurant is lovely for food or there is a small kiosk next door. The beach itself is stony and there are also toilets nearby.

6.  Pond Dipping 

This is such a simple activity but one that can entertain children for ages. It doesn’t need to be a large just big enough for a child to use their to see what they can find.  Don’t forget to take a tray or bucket to see what you can catch.  Please be safe around the water and take care of your children.

7.  Cycling along the South Downs Link Path

This is a, mostly, flat route than goes from Guildford to Shoreham. Click the link HERE to view the West Sussex guide to cycling the Path and the various cafes, car parks and local amenities.

8.  Den Building

There are so many places to go Den Building. Firstly it can be done indoors or outside. My children love to build a den in the living room and then have a movie and sleepover in it. Great places for den building outside include: Box Hill, St Leonards Forest or Leechpool Woods

9.  Shaving foam painting

This is such a fun activity. On a piece of paper, spread some shaving foam across it then add dollops of paint. With a tooth pick you can then draw patterns in the shaving foam and leave it to dry.

10.  Fire Pit & S’Mores 

What better way to end the day than with a fire pit and S’mores. If you don’t know what S’mores are let me explain. These are originally from America and are made by roasting a marshmallow over the fire then sandwiching it between two Graham Crackers and adding a piece of Hersheys chocolate. A quick way to make them in England is to use marshmallows but then put them between chocolate digestives biscuits. They are so tasty but please take lots of care around the fire.

 

If you like any of the ideas I have added please let me know, or even tell me if you have any of you own.

 

For others ideas please visit my other blogs:

Things to do in West Sussex 2

Where to visit in West Sussex in the Autumn

Things to do in West Sussex

Walking along the Wey and Arun Canal

 

I hope you liked my 10 free ideas for children during the holiday.

Have a great summer.

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Thank you

 

Things to do in West Sussex – Tilgate Lake, Crawley

Things to do in West Sussex – Tilgate Lake, Crawley

Things to do in West Sussex with children – Tilgate Lake

During lockdown, it is so hard to come up with things to do in West Sussex with your children, that

a; aren’t full of other people and

b; don’t cost a fortune.

Tilgate Park and Lake, in Crawley, is fantastic.  It is the perfect place to go to, especially for the evening, after a hot day in the sun.  It was away from the crowds and a wonderful place for the children to relax and enjoy.

Tilgate Park also has so much to offer .  It has a a couple of lakes, large green to play games or picnic, wooded areas, play parks, trim trails, golf course, cycle trails and  nature centre.  It also has a cafe, restaurant and a Go Ape high ropes course. In the summer it has some fantastic inflatable games plus boating on the lake and in the winter Father Christmas comes to visit.  There is so much to see and do, it really is a must if you haven’t been before.

About Tilgate Park.

 

The address for Tilgate Park is: Tilgate Drive, Crawley, West Sussex RH10 5PQ

There is one free car park near K2 and the rest are paying but procedes from the car parks do go back into the park!

Dogs are allowed in the park but not in the walled garden or nature reserve.

 

Our evening

This jetty was perfect for chilling out on but as we arrived a couple of teenage girls, also thought the same.

Unfortunately, for one, she managed to drop her phone through the slats of the jetty, into the water below.  As we had fishing nets, we offered to help, also because she was panicking her mum would be really mad at her.  We managed to locate the phone and helped to guide her underneath the jetty to pick it out.

I have to say, if this was my daughter, even if the phone had broken, I would’ve been so proud of her!  She didn’t hesitate to get down to her swimmer, to enter the water to retrieve the phone.  She even went under the jetty where there were all sorts of things lurking.

Having left, to give mum the bad news, we then had the jetty to ourselves. To enjoy the evening.  From across the lake we could even hear music, from someones stereo, and the air was so warm, as the sun started to set.  It was so peaceful!

Whether you want to walk, cycle or take your scooters Tilgate Park is great for burning of energy with your children.  It is also perfect for picnics and playing games on the large green.

THE OUTTAKES

All photo sessions are meant to be fun!

A little bit of photobombing while taking some photos.

Family Photo Sessions

If you are interesting in booking a fun, relaxed outdoor photo session, capturing the true personality of your family please visit my Home page by clicking HERE

Walking at Ditchling Beacon.. and meeting a lovely couple expecting their first baby

Walking at Ditchling Beacon.. and meeting a lovely couple expecting their first baby

Walking at Ditchling Beacon

Walking at Ditchling Beacon in West Sussex, near Brighton is just beautiful.  From the top you have the most amazing views of both the lush green countryside AND of the sea, in the distance.  Amongst the green, however, was a tiny splash of red…

Poppies… Seeing the pop of red in a field of green is just wonderful!  But I think unfortunately most farmers see them as weeds, so tend to get rid of them.  They also don’t like people trampling over their crops to get to them, which is probably another reason.  I decided to take the dog for a walk around Ditchling to see what I could photograph.  Being a beautiful afternoon, I wasn’t disappointed!

Cheeky cows

These cows were so cheeky! I was following a footpath along the top and either side of the path were cow fields.  As I walked along they came running up to me.  Thankfully, there was a very strong fence between me and them, as they seemed quite keen to get close.  I did love the one of them all walking together, it made me wonder where they were off to.  Once I got to the end, though, I needed to go through their field, so decided to head back, as I didn’t want them coming near me or the dog.  I’d love to know if anyone has walked though this field and whether the cows tend to stay away.

There is a car park near here, at Stamner Lodge, which is only open from 9-5pm.  From here there are lots of lovely footpaths, so please do stick to them and do not cut across farmers fields.  The fields also have cows in them, so do take care.  If you are walking towards the poppy field please only use the footpaths and remember these crops ARE a farmers livelihood.

Meeting a lovely couple and offering to capture some photos of their bump.

When I arrived at the field there was a lovely couple taking photos.    The lady was expecting a baby, so I offered to take a couple of photos of them, together.  Due to lockdown, I kept my distance as all times.  When I got home I then emailed them their photos as a reminder of their evening together.

If you walking around Ditchling Beacon, I would love to know your favourite walk and what you like to photograph, using the comments below.

Feel free to contact me using the contact form below or pop over to my maternity photography page for more infomation.  For anything else head to my main page, by clicking here.

Running 5km for the NHS.

Running 5km for the NHS.

Running 5km for the NHS to say THANK YOU!

Why did we decide to run 5km for the NHS during the Coronavirus Pandemic

 
Running 5km for NHS was our way of saying  THANK YOU because during Lockdown I feel very guilty but privileged to able to stay at home, safe, with my children.
 
Unable to work, as a non essential business, this to is a small price to pay.  At home I am able to spend time with my children: having fun, homeschooling and teaching them life skills.  All the while, others are out there risking themselves everyday and then coming home to their family….Still trying to keep everyone safe! 
 
 

Getting fitter during Lockdown.

A few times a week I have been able to get out for a run. Away from others and slowly building up my fitness. Something that lots of NHS workers have probably been unable to do, during this troubling time.

My children have been spent days with me, as a family: playing on the trampoline, cooking, taking the dog for walk; enjoying carefree days.

Saying thanks to the NHS.

My daughters football team, Southwater Royals Girls Under 13, challenged the girls to run 5km for NHS. So I decided my two children should attempt that challenge.

Having just built up to 5km myself, I told them we would just take it slowly, as neither of them had run that far before and nor had they done any training for it! Although as children they are constantly on the move. My daughter also loves athletics so she did have a head start in fitness. All because other people out there are working VERY hard to keep us safe.

running 5km for NHS

The 5km run for the NHS

We set off early morning and both children were quite excited. The start was tough because it took a little while to warm up and set our pace.

Before long we all settled into a good pace and we were all smiling and chatting. The route we did was great because it had 4 sections, which meant you felt like to were checking off the miles pretty quickly. It was also through the beautiful countryside around Southwater so really nice and peaceful!

Running 5km for NHS charity in Southwater

The final leg is where things got a bit harder but both children were still brilliant. Preferring to sprint, my daughter would run off and then went for us to catch up. Whereas my son, who doesn’t normally run took the slow and steady option. I was amazed by his determination because he didn’t walk even when he was really tired!

Running 5km for NHS charity in Southwater

What amazes me most is how normal they both looked when we finished. I’m really proud of them both because they took the challenge on without any complaints and it was a brilliant thing to do as a family. If anyone would like to give a donation to the NHS please click 5k for NHS

Running 5km for NHS charity in Southwater

If you would like to find out more information about Claire Wilders Photography and the services that we offer please click here

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Things to do in Sussex…

Things to do in Sussex…

Wisborough Green Hot Air Balloon Festival 2018

Things to do in Sussex

Finding things to do in West Sussex can be hard to do when you don’t know what’s out there. But have you heard of Wisbourough Green… 

I can’t imagine many people have.  Its a lovely, sleepy little village in West Sussex that is set around a village green and a pond.  It also has a pub,  cafe,  school and post office.  I only know it because I drive through it or occasionally I cycle to the cafe.  However once a year the village comes alive with people and bursts of colour.  As 25 balloons descend on the village ready to take flight for the charity  Chestnut Tree House!

Colourful hot air balloon

Around sunrise and sunset the hot air balloons are prepared on the village green.  It’s amazing to walk amongst them at the various stages of inflation.  The colours are absolutely stunning.  Once set up, you can watch the stunning display of balloons taking off and flying over the Downs and Sussex countryside.  This year the weather was so warm with bright blue skies.  Watching the balloons was just magical, especially being able to see them in the sky as the sun was setting.

I can’t wait for next year when I’ll definitely be up early to see them setting up.

For more information on booking a hot air balloon ride at the event South Downs Balloons.

Chestnut Tree House

Visiting Sheffield Park Sussex

Visiting Sheffield Park Sussex

Visit SHEFFIELD Park Gardens, Sussex

Leaves, Autumn Colours, Sheffield Park in the Autumn


Things to do with children in Sussex, Sussex Photography,

First of all, it’s no secret that I LOVE Autumn and that I love the idea of moving away from Sussex and back to the mountains and the sea.

Leaves and feet, autumn leaves, Sheffield Park, Sussex Photographer

However, there is a place in Sussex that ALWAYS makes me happy when I visit … and that’s

The National Trusts Sheffield Park, Sheffield Park and Garden

Nan and Grandaughter in the Autumn, family photo sessions in sussexLast weekend I decided to drag my two children and mum out for some lovely Autumn photos and to enjoy a beautiful walk around the gardens. This only happened because I promised them a go on the big swing and a play in the den building area afterwards. Family Photo Sessions, Sussex photo sessions, Autumn family Photo SessionsLast year I made the mistake of going there first and NEVER actually making it into the gardens because the swing is absolutely awesome!  The children also spend hours building dens too.

Nan and grandson in the Autumn, Photo sessions in Sussex

Sometimes, however children don’t want to play and decide they don’t want their photo taken… children of photographers included.

Grumpy children with nanny

Autumn photo sessions with grandparents, nan and grandchildren family photo shoot ideas, susses photography

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