|National Trust – Llanerchaeron|
On Tuesday morning I decided we would head out for the morning. I had to collect something from Aberaeron and thought it would be the perfect excuse to call in at the near by Llanerchaeron, a National Trust property. I made a picnic and once the little one I had for the day arrived we all got in the car to make the thirty minute journey to Aberaeron. Thankfully I was able to pick up my package without trouble and within a few minutes we were making our way towards Llanerchaeron.
There are times when I think my idea’s are mad and it would be far easier to stay at home and today was one of those days. Heading out for a picnic with five children, two of which weren’t keen on going out to start with really could only spell one thing right?! The thing is I’m of the frame of mind that if the sun is shining which is was, you have to give things a go, if it ends in disaster you learn from it, if its successful then fantastic, the children have had a great experience and learnt new things hopefully. I really hoped I wouldn’t regret this outing.
Anyway arriving at Llanerchaeron we could see straight away that it was busy. I laid down some ground rules with the boys, the standard, no running, no shouting, don’t pick flowers etc I decided to take the single buggy with us, it would come in handy for the picnic even if one of the younger two didn’t use it. I had a family day pass which would give us all entry into so we headed over to the reception building. Handing over the pass to the gentleman at the desk we then made our way through the door to head over the lane into the grounds. By this time the boys were all excited and the younger two picking up on the boys excitement were giggling away.
We had been told that there would be the opportunity to feed some lambs in an hours time and I had already decided heading into the house with the five children would not be a good idea so I asked the older boys to work out the way to the lake. Trystan and Luc quickly spotted the signs pointing in the direction of the lake and we set off. Luc pushing the buggy with the picnic in it while I walked along with the younger two, both enjoying the fresh air and the flowers around us. There were a few other people along the path also enjoying the grounds and the sun.
|Carpet of Daffodils|
We rounded a corner to walk along one of the outer walls of the walled garden and were faced with a carpet of daffodils. They looked lovely in the sunshine and the children quickly wanted to smell them. After five minutes we continued along the path with Rowan and Trystan slightly a head of the rest of us. Suddenly Trystan called that he had found the lake, I told them to stay away from the water.
As I emerged from the path with the younger two and Luc I could see Trystan and Rowan watching the ducks on the lake. Erin spotted them too and squealed with delight pointing at them. We watched the ducks and ducklings for five minutes before we continued on the path around the lake.
There were lots of interesting looking trees that the boys immediately wanted to climb and explore. They found one that they could actually stand inside and were quick to take it in turns doing just that. Not wanting to be left out Erin was keen to join in and with a little help from Trystan managed it. The little one I was looking after was happy to watch not wanting to venture over himself.
|Tree climbing fun|
|Look we can climb inside|
We continued a little further until we came to a bench, the perfect spot for lunch. So I set about handing out sandwiches. It was so peaceful and although I had had to tell the Trystan and Rowan not to wonder off and not to get too close to the water, so far all was well.
Rowan and Trystan enjoyed their sandwiches sat near the edge of the lake with an inquisitive duck coming to see what they were doing. While I sat on the bench with the younger two and Luc. After twenty minutes I realised there was only fifteen minutes until the lamb feeding so I asked the boys if they wanted to head over. We packed up our things and started along the path again. I knew I would have to stop and change nappies once we came across the toilets too and the younger two were getting tired.
Without warning Trystan and Rowan decided now was a fantastic time to start messing around! The two younger ones started to get tearful, Erin refused to go in the buggy and she didn’t want her little friend to use it either but he didn’t want to walk any further! So somehow I managed to half carry half walk the two little ones along the path while Luc pushed the pushchair and Rowan and Trystan disappeared from sight! Goodness knows what anyone passing us thought! I was worried about where the two boys had disappeared off too although they knew we were headed for the farm yard. Luc bless him tried to help calm the younger two down but without much success.
Somehow we reached the toilets and after nappy changes peace was restored. Rowan and Trystan appeared from the bushes, apparently they were hiding! I reiterated that they needed to listen and not run off. With that we set off again towards the farm yard where we saw a group gathered. We joined the group and headed into one of the buildings were we found some lambs and piglets. The wardens were preparing bottles of milk to feed the lambs with. Luc joined the other children on the bales of straw ready to have his turn while I showed the younger two the animals. Rowan and Trystan decided they didn’t want to wait and went off to investigate a model cow at the other end of the building.
Rowan though quickly spotted Luc feeding a lamb and came to join him for a turn. Erin was fascinated and kept telling me ‘baby’ pointing to the lambs. It was quiet busy and it was all suddenly too much for Erin’s little friend and he wanted to leave the building when a lamb came to say hi! By this stage Trystan had also managed to fed a lamb so I quickly ushered my lot out of the building.
|Feeding the lambs|
I explained to the boys that the younger two were tired and it was time to head home. Trystan and Rowan wanted to stay longer and protested all the way back to the car. Car loaded we set off, the two boys still unhappy about leaving! Almost as soon as we left the car park the younger two children were fast asleep and I told Trystan and Rowan to use the journey home to think about their behaviour.
The first half of the trip had gone well and everyone had enjoyed, sadly the second half had not gone well and I was left feeling disappointed in Rowan and Trystan’s behaviour. I don’t think I was asking to much from them. The rest of the day passed uneventfully although I felt like I had failed somehow, maybe I shouldn’t have attempted a trip out with five children on my own, had I over stretched myself. I don’t think I had, for what ever reason Trystan had decided not to behave and Rowan had followed his brothers lead. It’s something that we’ve experienced off and on for a while now with Trystan but then why should everyone else miss out because he can’t behave! What would you have done?