Cannon Hall Farm.

So yesterday afternoon after a super busy morning, Keira asked if we could go to Cannon Hall Farm. As it was already 2pm my first answer was ‘it’s too late to go now but we will go another day’. This answer wasn’t good enough for Princess Keira and her response was ‘but please mummy, it’s not too late.. Please!’

I headed to the Cannon Hall Farm website to check opening times and check the admission prices as I felt reluctant to pay full price of we could only have a couple of hours there.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that on Monday to Friday’s during term time, entry is just £3.00 per person if you arrive after 3:30pm. Parking is also free which is great. You have until 5:30pm in the farm but until 6:30pm in the new Hungry Llama Soft Play so plenty of time for lots of fun.

We got ready (raincoats and wellies as it was literally chucking it down) and set off to the farm. We arrived just shortly after 3pm and was pleased to see that the car park was practically empty. I always love a good car parking spot especially when it’s near to the main entrance.

Off we went into the farm with a very happy 4 year old and a defiant 2 year old who had the privilege of her chauffeur driven pushchair because she decided wellies and socks weren’t on the agenda today. 

It really made me laugh when we came through the entrance and said to the assistant ‘I’m on a school trip and this is my teacher, Miss mummy’ She then proceeded calling me ‘Miss Mummy’ all the way round the farm. She’s really enjoying home education and I’m so glad! 

I have to say one of my pet hates is attractions during busy periods. I get so claustrophobic and anxious that our visits seem to he short lived if it is crazily busy. I was amazed at how quiet it was at the farm during this time and for that reason we would most definitely come again at this time! It was lovely watching Keira run ahead and not get lost in crowds of people.

The first place we headed was to the pigs! We were priveleged to see some 1-day old piglets that had just arrived back from their first injections. We met the cutest donkey family and Keira made friends with lots of goats! As it was quieter the interaction from the farmers was lovely too. A few of them stopped to tell Keira little facts about the animals and she was so intrigued. 


After spending a good amount of time looking at the animals we decided to give the Hungry Llama Soft Play a go. There is a buggy park outside the playgym which is handy – much better than a playgym full of unused pushchairs.

I have to say I was amazed at the size of it! It seems like they have considered everything when designing the playgym and there is so much for the little ones to do! We really could have spent the whole day in there! I know we would have done had the girls had their way.

I ordered some food for the girls as it was close to tea time. Keira had the turkey dinosaurs, homemade chips and peas and Scarlett had just beans on toast. Keira’s food was actually lovely and I was really pleased with the quality. Scarlett’s beans and toast was exactly what you’d expect but I have to say it was a bit overpriced as all she got was a small slice of toast and a few beans and it was £2.25. Other than that the food quality was good.


After running round the playgym after the girls for the past hour, I decided to sit down and have a rest whilst the girls continued playing. After about 10 minutes I realised I hadn’t heard Scarlett so went in to find her. You can imagine my panic after 5 minutes of searching I couldn’t find her. I reached that mown the of ‘oh my goodness! What do I actually do?!’ I kept searching and searching and eventually heard a ‘mum! Mummy!’ I looked up and Scarlett had managed to climb to the very top platform but couldn’t work out how to get down! When I finally got up there she was naked and shouting ‘I need a yee yee’ I have never felt so relieved to hear her say those words! 

For anyone thinking of visiting the farm, we would highly recommend. There is so much to do including feeding the animals, the outdoor adventure playground (which looks fantastic), sheep racing during peak times and then the Hungry Llama Playgym which I mentioned earlier in the post. 


All in all, Cannon Hall Farm is brilliant especially at that time and we will definitely visit again. If you would like to learn more visit http://www.cannonhallfarm.co.uk

Jenna x

Thank goodness I home school!

On Friday we decided to have a day out to the National Coal Mining Museum. I remember visiting when I was much younger on a school trip and I thought it would be a nice place to spend a seemingly warm sunny day with the little ones. Keira is really interested in history at the moment and I love to see the fascination and disbelief when we talk about past events that happened ‘before she was even born’! 


Entry is free so for anyone wanting to save some money it’s definitely a good place to go. I was really pleased to find an under 5’s play area inside which was fantastic. The children really loved it. We got to meet 2 pit Ponies, Eric and Ernie and a cat with no tail – Keira obviously begged to take it home! Unfortunately the outdoor playground was closed for maintainance but I can imagine that being pretty fun too. 

After a morning of exploring and learning new things we decided to head to the picnic area for our picnic. We were then joined by a small school group. I would probably say no more than 20 pupils and 3 members of staff and I have no idea what school they were part of as the children had plain white polo shirts on. 

I have to say I was disgusted and upset at the way the staff spoke to the children. There was a massive lack of respect. I have never heard so much shouting from adults let alone teachers in my life. It really upset me. I understand this doesn’t happen in every school but it did make me think.. What happens when we aren’t there? Are our children treat in the same way that we would treat them at home? Are they loved, valued and respected?! 

I don’t think people understand the implications of their actions and words sometimes. Yes, adults have to be authoritative but I believe there is a right way to do that. 

As a childminder I am privileged that the parents of my minded children put their trust in me to care for their children. It is second nature to me to treat them exactly how I treat my own children and I view my business as part of my extended family. Every child is special and every child should be loved, valued and respected at all times. 

We finished our picnic pretty quickly as I didn’t want to my little ones to witness any more negativity. I grasped my Scarlett and little A’s hand while Keira skipped ahead and felt so reassured that I’m making the right decision for my girls. I want them to grow into beautiful confident souls and from what I witnessed on Friday that school in particular is not going to nurture that with their own children. Very sad.

Anyway here’s to a good weekend. Back to it next week.

Jenna x

Those moments..

Do you ever have those moments where you feel so ‘in love’ with your children? Like most parents I love my girls unconditionally, but sometimes through life’s busy moments you don’t have the chance to just stop and admire their beautiful little faces and their  amazing personalities.

Scarlett-Rose Newborn (54)

Last night I woke to a loud bang and Keira had fallen out of her bed. I rushed into her room, picked her up and tucked her back into bed. She didn’t even stir!

I would usually rush back to bed to continue my sleep (sleep is so important when you have a temperamental toddler who has recently decided to be nocturnal!) For some reason, last night I didn’t rush back to my own bed. Instead I tucked myself in beside her and for about 10 minutes I laid and I looked at her. I stroked her beautiful curls and looked at her long eyelashes. I held her hand and reminisced about those moments when her tiny fist would grasp around my finger. I noticed the content look on her face and the little snore that let the world know she was resting. And I felt that feeling, that overwhelming proud ‘I can’t believe you are my little girl’ feeling!

I reminisce back to when she was a 5lb 4oz bundle in my arms and I remember telling her that I was going to be the best mummy that I could be. I think of moments that I could have been a little more patient & a little better. But all in all I remember that I am doing the best that I can and I adore her.

I then think about her little sister who is going through the challenging 2 year ‘I am independent’ stage and that today I huffed a little when we went to the toilet for the 30th time that morning, that I sighed when she threw her dinner on the floor then cried because even though she chose to throw it on the floor she still wanted to eat it. Then I picture her beautiful little face this afternoon covered in ice cream and just how much she enjoyed it and all those little niggles are just silly.

Sometimes in life we get so busy. I will always love my children, for every second of every day. It isn’t that I forget to love them. But sometimes I find that life gets so busy and you don’t have the time to just look at them, to take in every perfect little feature and appreciate just how lucky we truly are.

This one is for my girls. The reason I smile every day and my purpose in life ❤

Jenna x 

Adrenaline International Review.

So with Keira requesting a day with lots of jumping and bouncing, I headed to google to
FullSizeRender (2)search for a trampoline park. I was really pleased to find one located on Halifax Road in Liversedge.

Adrenaline International is a family run business that opened in early 2016. From looking at the website it really seemed like they thought of everything that a family may want or need. Not only is there a trampoline park on site but there is also a soft-play area and a cafe too (perfect for my hungry monsters who’s favourite line seems to be ‘can we have dinner?’ – even if it is only 9am!)

On Mondays to Friday at 10am until 11am and then in the afternoon at 2pm to 3pm they have a dedicated 5’s and under only toddler jump sessions. It’s £5.00 per person (children and adults are charged the same which I think is really fair). If you haven’t visited before you will need to purchase special socks but these only cost £1.00 each and you can machine wash them so using them agaiFullSizeRender (4)n is fine.

We arrived at 9:30am, a little earlier than planned but the staff were great. We had already pre-booked online so they checked us in and provided us with the socks. They also gave us the option of paying an additional £2.00 per child to enable them to play in the Lost City Soft Play area and I am glad we took advantage of this. We were firstly showed us the compulsory safety video and then shown the lockers. Free of charge lockers are available which I was really pleased about (with a toddler and a 4 year old I do not travel lightly!).We then waited in the cafe area until we were allowed on the trampolines.

When 10am came the girls were the first on the trampolines and they honestly loved it. The marshals were so good with the little ones. My youngest was in awe of how high they could bounce. Mr Tumble was playing on a big screen which I thought was a nice touch and they played age appropriate music which the girls loved jumping about to. By 10:45 am we were all shattered so decided to call it a day and go and play in the soft play.

I have toFullSizeRender (3) say I was even more impressed with the soft play area. It was fantastic! I think they have thought of everything and the girls (and mummy!) had such a fun time. We spent another hour in the soft play before calling it a day and deciding to go home for lunch.

I did have a quick look at the Menu in the cafe and I was pleased to see a nice variety of foods available. The prices are similar to what you would see in most play gyms. We would definitely consider eating in the cafe next time we visit.

We only spent the morning here but you could definitely stay all day if you wanted to.

I am really impressed to have found this trampoline park and will definitely be recommending to family and friends. No matter how old you are their is definitely some fun to be had here so I would give it a try.

If you would like to find out more about this attraction click Adrenaline International to be redirected to the website.

Jenna x

Tuesday is Adventure Day!

Tuesdays have to be my favourite day of the week as it is my day off work. This means that me and my girls can spend the day together doing whatever we want to do.

FullSizeRenderAs Keira is the eldest sibling she seems to automatically become the decision-maker for the group. To be honest she does seem to come up with fantastic ideas so it works well for us all and I certainly look forward to hearing her exciting ideas.

We are relatively new to home education. 3 weeks in to be precise! Our first Tuesday was spent at our local splash park at the new sports centre in Huddersfield and I have to say it was just fantastic. On our second Tuesday together Keira had a lie-in (another perk of HE) and when she got up the heavens had opened. She decided that it would be fun to go to the park so we put on our wellies and off we went. We took a workbook and pencil crayons and had an absolute blast jumping in muddy puddles. The girls were absolutely filthy but I completely agree with the statement ‘Messy Kids are Happy Kids’ as my girls were certainly happy that day!

Last night Keira decided she wanted to do lots and lots of jumping and bouncing.  I got my thinking cap on and headed to google to see what I could find. I was pleasantly surprised to find a trampoline park that wasn’t too far away from us. I will do a separate review for this but it was amazing! We will most definitely be going again.

I think its so important that as parents we let our little ones be decision makers sometimes! Its so lovely to see their ideas come to life and be able to enjoy their plans with them.

Jenna x

‘Am I going to school today?’

This morning Keira woke up and the first thing she said to me was ‘am I going to school today?’ – I found myself pausing before I gave her an answer. Does she want to go to school? Am I absolutely insane to think HE is the right thing for her?

image
I finally responded ‘no Keira, remember you are home educated now. You won’t be going again’ and the response I got was so reassuring. She turned to me with a big smile and said ‘that’s great mummy! So what are we doing today?’ I have to be truthful. I still feel a little insane (I actually probably am!) but my main priority at the point of deregistering her was to make her happy and I feel like I’m certainly doing that 😊

Today was a working day for me so we had two additions to the clan – A who is 2 and L who is 3. Both are just wonderful and get on perfectly with my 2 girls. We visited our local group this morning where we spent time with some other HE families learning about animals, drawing pictures, playing games and reading stories. We then spent he afternoon doing more arts and crafts – my poor floor is covered in glitter and sequins! Watching their imaginations develop is fantastic though. We have had little A (2) role play a hairdressing Spider-Man – she actually snook to the craft drawer for scissors but luckily SuperJenna caught her just in time! Then Keira has spent the afternoon trying to persuade L (3) to marry her! Unfortunately he does not agree!

So that’s our day today in a nutshell. Lots of fun, adventure and happiness. Just what we needed 😀

Jenna x

‘But when will they socialise?!’ 

When sharing the fact that we are home educating with other people I find that one of the main questions asked is ‘how will they socialise?’ I don’t know what people assume but I don’t lock my children up in the house and hide them from the world! I promise you they actually have more socialising opportunities now that we home educate. 

As parents we obviously want our little ones to be confident and build friendship groups so the social aspect of our HE journey is very important. 

Keira attends drama class which she loves and will be starting Rainbows once she turns 5, which is something I am sure she will enjoy. She has also expressed an interest in gymnastics & horse riding (my girl has expensive taste) and these are all things we will explore. Scarlett Rose doesn’t attend any classes yet but we regularly attend play gyms and toddler groups which she really enjoys. 

As I work as a childminder throughout the week, the girls are constantly around other children of various ages who they have formed some lovely bonds with. The ages vary from 6 months up to age 3. As I am required to adhere to the EYFS, when I set tasks for the younger ones I try and implement some similar activities at ks1 level for Keira. It enables her to feel included but also challenges her a little. Even though she is still 4 and a half, it amazes me how well she completes ks1 work so it’ll be interesting to watch her develop new skills and knowledge over the next few months.

We’ve recently started to attend HE meet ups and the girls and myself have met some lovely friends. It’s so nice meeting people who seem so similar to yourself and have similar opinions too. I do hope to go on more meet ups soon.

It also helps that we have a big family who we spend a lot of time with. 

So that’s it for this evening. My children spend a lot of time with people. They are chatty and confident and I have absolutely no worries about the social side of HE 😊 

If you are considering HE, please don’t worry about the social side. Having the freedom to do what you want to do and go wherever you want to go is one of the perks of HE.

Jenna x

Outdoor Fun.

We absolutely love the outdoors.
I haveIMG_3341 days where I can be a little OCD and I feel my inner ‘sensible’ voice shouting ‘noo don’t get dirty’, ‘Please be careful’ ‘Don’t run’ etc but I really try to stay relaxed and let the little ones get messy, explore and have fun.

I do believe the quote ‘Messy Kids are Happy Kids’

Tuesday is my day off from work so for the full day my girls get my full attention. As Keira-Elise is the oldest and the spokesperson for the two I allow her to choose what they would like to do for the day. This morning she decided that they wanted to do arts and crafts and then go to the park. I try to be quite frugal so this was a w
in win situation for us all, lots of fun for the girls and no money spent for mummy!

We found the most fantastic Wood-Land Log Book – It’s printable and black and white (so cheaper to print) and we had so much fun exploring the park. We didn’t go toIMG_3346 the woods this time – though we have a lovely one nearby as Scarlett kept shouting ‘swing swing’ and I didn’t want to disappoint her so off we went with our log book in hand.

Its absolutely amazing how much you see when you just take the time to look. One of the best things about Home Education is not having to rush.
We had absolutely nowhere to be today so we strolled through the park at our own pace, taking in the surroundings and the girls loved it. We saw a duck with 7 ducklings, found some mushrooms which Keira found fascinating – Scarlett just couldn’t understand why mummy wouldn’t let her eat them. We jumped in muddy puddles (fortunately we all had wellies on) and the girls got absolutely filthy but it was a lovely day.

My eldest is currently sat draw
ing in the rest of the booklet and the little one is sticking stickers to the dining table while I run them a nice bubble bath.

I’ve included the link below. I would definitely print it off next time you visit your local park, woodland etc – who knows what you will find.

 Jenna x

http://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/mediafile/100745262/woodland-log-book.pdf?cb=f9da5b597f3445bf9dfb20a4377ec4e7

Making the decision to Home Educate.

IMG_3278Making the decision to Home Educate our children was far from easy and it is something that we have considered for a very long time.

In my mind, I felt so conflicted between knowing what was right for my child and what society expected from  me as a parent.  We are conditioned to think that when your child reaches age 4 or 5 years of age, they must go school.  Even though Home Education is something I had thought about before I guess like many others, I felt that school would offer something more than we as parents could offer.

Our school application process started in 2014 and we visited our local schools before applying for the one that we felt could support our child in the best possible way. I can honestly say that even though we have now made the decision to Home Education I am still glad that we chose the school that my child went to and for any friends or family who are looking at a mainstream school I would still recommend them. Our decision wasn’t personal to the school and taking her out was actually very emotional as it meant taking her away from some people she had built positive relationships with.

Before making the decision to Home Educate our daughter we did a lot of research and I mean a LOT! I think I actually started driving my partner up the wall with needing constant reassurance that we were in fact doing the right thing for her. I am fortunate that when it comes to our children we are a really good team and we made the HE decision for them together and already we know we made the best decision for them both.

 Before I continue I want to point out that I completely support every parents decision with education whether it is sending your child to public or private school or like us, making the decision to home educate. As parents we all want the best for our children! For some children school works for them and if it does that is great. For some children, like our Keira – school just wasn’t right for her. As her parents’ we realized that her personality and character was changing as a result of this and we took action to ensure that she became her happy self again.

 Through further research that I have done I do worry that the school education system is like a production line trying to mould our children into all becoming the same thing. They are all expected to learn at the same pace and level as their peers. There is no flexibility in what they learn or when they learn and the child has no say in their own education. Like I said before, some children adapt well to this and this can work for them. However these factors personally contributed towards our decision to Home Educate! Above everything all we want is for our children to be happy. Happiness, confidence and self-esteem is so important and I feel that by giving them the freedom to find themselves, grow and develop at their own pace and supporting them in whatever they want to do, we can set them up for a fantastic fulfilling future.

 I will leave it there for today but if you are a parent considering Home Education the biggest piece of advice I can give is ‘Education is compulsory; Schooling isn’t’. You don’t have to send your child to school and you have every ability to teach your child yourself. No-one wants more for your child than you do and if anyone can bring out the best in your child, it is you – the parent.

 Jenna x