Five Pits Trail – Download a map here.
After a few days spent indoors over Christmas and enjoying turning inwards to the family, we needed some fresh air. Although I’ve enjoyed the endless Lego, visiting family, leftover roast potatoes and board games, I feel stale and uninspired when I’m stuck indoors.
I packed up some sandwiches and a few apples, filled a flask with hot chocolate, grabbed our minibeasts book and headed out to the Five Pits Trail, parking up in Tibshelf.
We didn’t walk far, probably not much more than a mile, but we didn’t need to. Instead we found a clearing with a frosty bench and we stayed there admiring the view and climbing trees.
The boys shout ‘hello‘ to people passing, wide grins and hearty waving bringing smiles to the faces of strangers. Dogs come to play, weaving between the boys, tails wagging and noses sniffing.
We wander back over fields instead of returning on the same path, slipping down muddy steps and crossing half-hearted, broken bridges. The boys crunch over the frozen ground, delighting in the sound their boots make as they put their weight onto each foot.
Back home I tidy away Christmas. The tree comes down, the advent garlands packed neatly into their bags, the books collected from around the house. All that remains of Christmas is a bulging suitcase ready for the attic and the willow wreaths hanging outside the front door.
After a pot-luck dinner of leftovers – of spaghetti carbonara to use up ham and bacon, potatoes and brussels sprouts roasted in balsamic vinegar, of sausages and red cabbage – we head outside to try out our new Kelly Kettle.
The boys collect twigs and practice with their strike igniters. After getting the hang of it at forest school, the fire is lit within seconds and the water is boiling. We sit together in the dark on a muddy patio drinking tea, and there’s no place else I’d rather be.
The moon is bright and almost round, fast heading towards complete fullness. The sky is clear, a deep blue that never fails to remind me of the chunky glass ink bottles from which my father would refill his fountain pen. It’s the exact same shade and it fills me with nostalgia.
The boys head to bed with smiles on their faces. They thank me for a good day, and even though I know it’s a habit, it always brings me joy. I’ve been thanking my children for years, even when the days have been less than pleasant – but today, I know that they mean it.
In other quick snippets – the boys tried their new hand warmers today – perfect for warming little fingers when the cold sets in.
(Screenshot from Amazon)
They also tried their new base layers which my sister bought them for Christmas.
(Screenshot from Amazon)
Usually, at least one of my boys will complain they’re cold on any given outing. But today, at 1 degree Celsius, not one soul even noticed the cold.
Which makes my life a lot easier. I’m really looking forward to making use of the base layers and the boys were so excited to tell Daddy how good they were when he got home from work.
Add our new Kelly Kettle into the mix, and our outdoor adventures just stepped up a gear.