Conker Hunting in Westonbirt Arboretum
Autumn was definitely on its way when we last visited Westonbirt, so on my day off work it seemed like a good opportunity for another visit with Emily. She loved the acorns that we found on her last visit, so this time we decided to hunt for conkers.
I am really enjoying getting to have some time with just her as for so long she has had to share me with her big sister. She seems to really appreciate it too. Despite taking the pushchair, she hardly spent any time in it. She was happy to wander around, sometimes holding my hand, but not demanding to be picked up and carried as she sometimes does when Freyja is around. I hadn’t realised how much of this behaviour was just a way of competing for my time and attention. Despite not needing to dominate, she is still the very strong-willed little girl and made sure that she was demonstrating this by insisting on wearing over-sized gloves which although made picking up conkers quite difficult, she refused to take them off for some time.
We collected a bag full of conkers from just one horse chestnut tree. We then spotted a sweet chestnut tree. Emily was fascinated by the contrasting textures of the fruit – the spiky outside and velvety inside encasing the sweet chestnuts.
Emily was delighted to find some very muddy puddles to squelch through on our walk, and it was evident from her wellies just how much she had enjoyed splashing through them when we stopped to have a snack break.
As we walked through the arboretum we looked at all the differences in the trees. The bright autumn colours were obvious, but we also looked at the differences in the feel of the leaves and bark on the trees.
She also turned into a bit of a tree-hugger.
And once you start hugging trees, the next logical step is to cuddle up to them.
Once Emily managed to tear herself away from her new favourite tree, she found a few others to have fun with – especially ones that she could play “peekaboo” with between the branches.
No matter how much fun you can have playing with the trees, a trip to Westonbirt has to finish with a trip to the play area.