Jodie Alice Fisher https://jodiefisher.co.uk A personal blog from the heart of a young Mum Sun, 05 Jul 2020 20:15:26 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.4.2 98180168 Godstone Farm Reopens After Lockdown https://jodiefisher.co.uk/godstone-farm-reopens-after-lockdown/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=godstone-farm-reopens-after-lockdown https://jodiefisher.co.uk/godstone-farm-reopens-after-lockdown/#respond Sun, 05 Jul 2020 19:00:00 +0000 https://jodiefisher.co.uk/?p=37553 It’s a rather weird feeling adjusting to life after lockdown. We have two of our daughters back to school and one at home still. Clubs aren’t on, there’s no real need to be anywhere and of course, there’s social distancing to navigate our way around. At the weekend we were invited to come along to …

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It’s a rather weird feeling adjusting to life after lockdown. We have two of our daughters back to school and one at home still. Clubs aren’t on, there’s no real need to be anywhere and of course, there’s social distancing to navigate our way around.

At the weekend we were invited to come along to Godstone Farm‘s reopening. It was actually their first day of opening and I was interested to find out about the safety measures that they have put in place to keep all of their visitors and staff safe through these odd times.

This blog post is mainly describing the safety measures put in place, however, I have other blog posts that can give you a better detail of what a visit to Godstone Farm entails; Our first visit to Godstone Farm,  a summer time visit and Halloween time for Wiglet’s Spook-er-ree!

Entrance to the farm is strictly pre-booked tickets only. These can be easily done online and you can choose from selective time slots, starting every half an hour. This is enabling Godstone Farm to restrict the number of visitors arriving at the same time. They have restricted tickets to 50% of the usual capacity to help keep to social distancing requirements whilst inside the farm.

When you arrive there is a new sign reminding you how to stay safe whilst visiting Godstone Farm.  It’s worth giving them a read ahead of your visit and they can be viewed online.

I loved that the walk down towards the main farm area was full of bright, rainbow-coloured scarecrows. These are there all of the time and get dressed up depending on the season. This time they were wearing motivational t-shirts and welcomed everyone wonderfully.

The photo bench on arrival had been painted in rainbow colours and was a brilliant photo opportunity. Sadly I couldn’t persuade Elsa to join us and we couldn’t ask anyone to take a family photo of us due to social distancing and germs.

We had been greeted at the gate as there was a couple of bloggers attending for the opening weekend. They explained that they were not able to hand out maps anymore but instead had a laminated version that you could take a photo of, these were also dotted about the farm just in case.

This map has a one-way route to follow. Godstone Farm is not enforcing this but more suggesting it so that you can keep safe and make sure you see everything at the farm.

Godstone Farm has taken the sensible decision to keep the tearoom, animal holding, indoor play areas which includes the play barn and Wiglet’s Play Village and the tractor rides closed. These are obviously big parts of the experience at Godstone Farm, especially is wetter weather but it’s important to keep everyone as safe as possible.

 

Our girls were thrilled to find the little tractor slope was open. I wasn’t sure if it would be as this would be a high traffic touch area, however, I was equipped with hand sanitiser gel and had my eagle eyes on them with regards to hands near their faces.

It’s worth noting that we had arrived for 10 am, for a good few hours there was hardly anybody around until the weather brightened up and more people arrived. We was pretty much the first people using the tractor slope after a lockdown period so felt it would be ok.

Godstone Farm is a working farm so there’s lots of places to wash hands anyway, however, they have installed hand sanitisers everywhere. You can literally find one wherever you turn which was very reassuring. 

The main toilet blocks were open (in the farm area and up in the top play area). There was a sign reminding people that it has to be a maximum of 6 people in the building at one time and that they were operating a one in, one out policy. Each time we used the toilets, they were empty and had been clearly cleaned regularly throughout the day.

 

The Gift Shop was also operating a one in one out policy with a one-way system too. Again, there was a sign to remind you to social distance, only touch things you wish to purchase and use hand sanitiser before entering. The shop is only open at certain times in the day too so it’s worth making a note of those times in case you need anything like animal feed, day trip essentials, souvenirs and toys.

All of the Farm trail was open except the creepy cave. I think this area is far too small to adhere to social distancing so sadly (not really) we didn’t get to see any tarantulas. All of the farm animals seemed so thrilled to see visitors.

The geese took a particular fancy to Freya by the pond, the turkey had a conversation with Eva, the ferrets and Patsy the pig came over for a chat too! I love it when farm animals are interactive and not just sleeping. We had lots of fun wandering around the farm. I definitely missed the tractor ride and visiting Wiglet’s Play Village.

I knew that the tearoom wasn’t open ahead of our trip. It looks like it’s being refurbished as there was some demolition visible. So I made sure we packed a picnic. It felt so odd preparing a picnic after never leaving the house, wondering how much food I needed to take and whether it was too much or too little. Parenting after lockdown is a very strange thing to get used to again.

Thankfully there are some refreshment and food facilities open at Godstone Farm. Down in the farm area, Wiglet’s Play Village cafe is open. You can only access it from outside, there’s a perspex screen across the window. There’s also little queueing stickers on the floor to remind you to be 2 metres from the people in front of you. They serve hot and cold drinks, ice cream, snacks, sandwiches, hot dogs and pizza. So everything you’d need if you forget your packed lunch or need a pick me up treat. 

The other place to get some food and drinks is up in the Top Shop near the big outdoor play area. There’s also handwashing facilities to the side of the shop and hand sanitiser too. You are not allowed to eat near the animals but there are picnic areas marked in various locations.

 

It was very exciting to release our girls into an outdoor play area for the first time in months and months, it was equally as terrifying too. All of the play equipment is open except for one swing.

We would usually allow the girls some freedom to play. To bond with each other and have fun, but Hubby and I didn’t feel safe doing so. It was like having a toddler again and we followed the girls around making sure they were keeping aware of the people around them and staying socially distanced. It was all going good until about 1 pm when it got busier.

I wanted to make a big emphasis on the fact that it wasn’t the fault of Godstone Farm as to why we suddenly started to feel a bit unsafe. It was sadly the other parents. There was a lot of children unsupervised who were quite young and not understanding of the social distance rules. They were getting a little close for our liking so we kept moving our girls away.

Of course, after being in lockdown for so many weeks, I don’t blame the parents for wanting a bit of peace and allowing their kids to run off some steam. However, it’s that kind of attitude that makes me feel unsafe and that had nothing to do with Godstone Farm.

There are signs along the left of the pathway to the Top play area, letting us know that you cannot take food beyond that point and into the play area. This is to help with hygiene and I think it’s a brilliant idea.

The other side of the path is a field area where there would usually be a few picnic benches dotted about. However, Godstone Farm has removed nearly all benches from the farm. So I’d highly recommend taking a picnic blanket and possibly a foldable chair if you can, especially if you are elderly or struggle with walking for any length of time.

After we spent a good few hours in the play area with the girls, we wandered back down towards to animal farm. It was less busy down there. We said our goodbyes to the animals and had a few more turns on the ride on tractors before heading home.

Godstone Farm has done a brilliant job at making sure everybody stays safe. There was staff cleaning the areas regularly including signs and other high traffic touch areas. On the whole, it felt like a very safe day at the farm with lots of wonderful laughs. If you are looking for something outdoorsy to entertain the children, then this is a great option. Don’t forget to pre-book your tickets in advance.

I filmed our day, as always which is below. I’d love it if you could watch and maybe subscribe…

Disclosure: This is a gifted day out with Godstone Farm.

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Siblings 2020 – June https://jodiefisher.co.uk/siblings-2020-june/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=siblings-2020-june https://jodiefisher.co.uk/siblings-2020-june/#respond Tue, 30 Jun 2020 09:00:00 +0000 https://lifewithpinkprincesses.co.uk/?p=36530 Somehow my favourite photos of my daughters have included animals this month. I love it! June has been an odd month of readjusting to whatever this new normal is right now. We have two of our girls back at school and the family dynamic seems a little broken. It’s been a good month and I …

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Somehow my favourite photos of my daughters have included animals this month. I love it!

June has been an odd month of readjusting to whatever this new normal is right now. We have two of our girls back at school and the family dynamic seems a little broken. It’s been a good month and I am positive.

Freya

Freya started back at school first. We decided to wait a couple of weeks after the Government announced that children could return. I wanted to take my time in the decision and it was a difficult one to make.

Getting Freya back to school was by far the best thing we could have done for her. She has been enthusiastic and energetic about life. Previously it felt like a candle had been blown out and she was quite down. It’s nice to see her happy again, smiling and telling us about her day.

I have been encouraging more independence this month as Freya begins to prepare for her Secondary School in September. It seems crazy that I am filling in forms and buying new uniform. She’s still my little premature baby!

Eva

Now that we are doing a morning school run, we have been able to get outside for fresh air. It didn’t occur to me how much Eva was finding being at home hard, she’s always so happy, but seeing her running freely whilst we feed the ducks made my heart melt.

Virtual home learning has been quite tricky with Eva. She has little focus. Eva thrives in the school environment and it’s such a shame that she cannot be at school with her sisters too.

Eva has been enjoying video calls with her teacher and friends. We have also had a couple of socially distanced playdates this month, one that evening included a dog walk. 

Elsa

This girl has been a challenge with regards to home learning. I can just about manage to persuade her to do some Reading Eggs on the iPad but putting an actual pen to paper has been tough. I’m not sure when she last did if I’m honest.

Elsa’s year group had returned to school but we had decided to keep her at home. In a way, it was to keep Eva company, but also because the younger years were not socially distancing so I was worried. After seeing Freya go back to school and thrive, I felt completely torn about my decision.

Eventually, we decided to send Elsa back to school. This is only her second day but I can see the benefits it will have for her. Educationally and socially. She has selective mutism so being at home was never going to help her. 

Sisters

It’s been a weird month. We’ve had small snippets of being a family of five and then the majority of it, is a bit broken. Eva and Elsa have spent many days bonding together, we’ve visited the ducks and paddled in streams.

It’s been odd not having my girls as a three. Seeing them readjust to a weird new normal, snatching small pockets of time to be all together again. 

It definitely doesn’t feel like a new normal, it’s sort of like living in a limbo world right now. Literally taking every day as it comes, having no real routine or plan. It’s odd but my girls are troopers and they seem to be coping really well.

Check out our previous Siblings Project posts here!

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Celebrating Fathers Day With Playmobil https://jodiefisher.co.uk/playmobil-back-to-the-future-delorean-review/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=playmobil-back-to-the-future-delorean-review https://jodiefisher.co.uk/playmobil-back-to-the-future-delorean-review/#respond Sun, 21 Jun 2020 09:00:00 +0000 https://jodiefisher.co.uk/?p=37487 Admittedly, I nearly forgot all about Fathers Day. Lockdown has most definitely turned my brain to mush. I always struggle with Fathers Day and figuring out what to buy my husband to show how much we appreciate him. Especially when he says “don’t buy me anything”. Thankfully Playmobil had my back with the launch of …

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Admittedly, I nearly forgot all about Fathers Day. Lockdown has most definitely turned my brain to mush. I always struggle with Fathers Day and figuring out what to buy my husband to show how much we appreciate him. Especially when he says “don’t buy me anything”.

Thankfully Playmobil had my back with the launch of their new Back To The Future playset to celebrate the films turning 35 years old! Making my gifting much easier this year.

Back To The Future is an iconic film trilogy made in 1985. Back then, this film pushed people’s imaginations and was well ahead of its time.

It’s a film I’m ashamed to admit that I have never seen but I have heard of it. It was very clear that my husband had seen it, his face was full of excitement to receive the new playset as a present from his daughters.

The Back To The Future playset comes complete with a replica of the iconic Delorean car. The set also includes figures of Marty Mcfly, Dr Emmett Brown and Einstein the dog.

I was the one chosen to put the car together. There are quite a few parts to fix the car together but the instructions are easy to follow. The Delorean even has a light-up exterior using batteries. This makes it the first Playmobil item we’ve had that lights up. We were all very impressed!

For those who were alive in the era of the Back To The Future films, I think the Playmobil Back To The Future set would make a great gift. It’s a fun replica of the car and can ignite imagination within the younger generation.

The set costs £49.99. Look how happy he is! He did want me to mention that this is his awful lockdown hairstyle right now, and he’s very much looking forward to the hairdressers opening soon.

Disclosure: This is a collaboration post with Playmobil.

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Strawberry Picking In A Pandemic https://jodiefisher.co.uk/strawberry-picking-in-a-pandemic/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=strawberry-picking-in-a-pandemic https://jodiefisher.co.uk/strawberry-picking-in-a-pandemic/#respond Fri, 19 Jun 2020 09:00:00 +0000 https://jodiefisher.co.uk/?p=37477 I haven’t had the chance to write about the fact Freya has now returned to school. We did film a video though and Freya did a fantastic job at describing her experiences of being back to school.  Something we do every year is go strawberry picking at a local Pick Your Own at Stonepitts Farm. …

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I haven’t had the chance to write about the fact Freya has now returned to school. We did film a video though and Freya did a fantastic job at describing her experiences of being back to school

Something we do every year is go strawberry picking at a local Pick Your Own at Stonepitts Farm. I was a bit sad that we might miss it due to the pandemic, but thankfully they’ve been able to open.

Stonepitts have put in safety measures including limiting the amount of visitors at one time, a socially distanced checkout area and contactless payment.

This happened to be the first family trip we’d been on for twelve weeks. An incredibly long time to be tucked away indoors. It felt glorious to be in the sunshine and doing something normal and familiar to us.

We came away with three punnets full of delicious, juicy strawberries and we are looking forward to our next visit.

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