Blown Away by Geocaching!

Bit windy today! It certainly was on top of Cold Kitchen Hill in Wiltshire. Today, after a 1 year and 7 day break, we went geocaching again.

 

It was a long slog up to the top of the hill but the view was incredible!

And thankfully we found the cache, the smalls get despondent if we don’t!

and then we found another one on the way back to the car.

Lovely spot. We will return with fishing nets!!

If you’d like to know how to start geocaching visit the groundspeak website and get out there!!

 

Something for the Weekend – Ever Been Geocaching?

Three years ago this coming April I attended my Step Father’s 60th birthday celebrations, it was a lovely day if a bit of an effort for me, I was 39 weeks pregnant at the time. Sitting at a table with my sisters, their partners and children I noticed my neice child was playing with a rather large plastic toy tiger which she gracefully allowed my daughter to play with too.  It was her new “treasure”.  “What do you mean treasure?” I asked  “We found it in a geocache on the way here”  “Geocache? Whats that?”

I’m sure this film explains it better that I can…

Well I was a bit busy for the next few weeks as I’m sure you can imagine but when things started to settle into a routine my curiosity got the better of me…

This is the point where I discovered a new hobby and a new pet hate too, I hate thinking something is out there and hidden and I don’t know where it is…

We signed on to geocaching.com The hardest bit of which is choosing a team name (once chosen you can’t change it!) and it is free to become a normal member, a few weeks later whilst in Devon on holiday we found our first cache using our Tomtom!

GC16ww1 St Swithens Launcells 🙂

668 finds later I am still a happy geocacher and now the Little Man is managing without the buggy I’m sure we will do many more this year.

Geocaches are placed and their location and logged using GPS technology so you need a GPS receiver to locate them, lots of gadgets have gps now, my husband uses his HTC mobile, there is an app for an iphone (of course) Tom Toms can often be programmed to find a location via northing and westing co ordinates and of course there are many GPSr’s on the market purpose built for the job, my first GPSr was a Garmin Etrex which is basic but does the job well enough 🙂

First timers may like to note that GPSr will take you in a direct line to the cache but please make sure you look up occasionally in case of cliff edges, rivers etc 😉

Once you are gadgeted up and signed on to www.geocaching.com click on to the Hide and seek a cache on the left hand side, then look for the search with google maps link, type in your town/city (if in the UK you will need to put this in like Bristol, UK or you will find somewhere in the USA!)

On the map you will see lots of different types of icons..

A Traditional Cache is a good place to start, the co-ordinates for it are listed, no working out co-ordinates like multi caches, no puzzles like (you got it) mystery caches and I suggest for your first attempt to go for a small or regular sized cache as listed on the cache description page, especially if you are caching with children, finding treasure ie: swaps is often the best part of the experience for them… So you have your gadget, you have decided where to go, have you found some swaps?

Caches can often take small swaps, we have found playdoh eggs, bouncy balls, keyrings, childrens beads – all sorts, it works on a take something leave something basis, you will often see on logs “TNLN” Took nothing left nothing, so it’s best to have a few items to swap before you go, old christmas cracker gifts work well.

Off you go then – don’t forget your pencil….

Let me know how you get on…

 

Please pop over to Thinly Spread for more Something for the Weekend…

Cannon Hall Farm

Yesterday we took the smalls to Cannon Hall Farm on the recommendation of a Twitter friend Himupnorth. The smalls had a really great day out, loved feeding the animals and seeing all the babies, wandering in the kitchen garden and visiting the many Rhododendrons in the fairy garden. We even managed to do two Geocaches in the grounds. Here are some pictures of our day, you will see that the adventure playground was especially popular.

Milking the "cow"

Lots of little piggies

Adults too

wee

Tarzan

new love of slides

Feet first

fly by wire

Worry worry worry

In just under a week my family and I are traveling up to  Yorkshire to house sit for my Brother in Law whilst he and his family fly off some where exotic (ash cloud allowing).

This arrangement came about when, last year with a cut back in my husbands hours and a company wide pay cut we couldn’t stretch to a “proper” holiday and ended up borrowing my nieces flat in Cardiff for a week.  That turned out really well for a Dr.Who / Torchwood fan, we visited various sights of interest and did some great geocaches. Cardiff is a fabulous holiday destination, we had a great time at Mermaids Quay, St Fagans was awesome my daughter loved the “big dollies houses” and we had a great time flying my husbands kites and finding shells on the various nearby beaches.

I digress, at a family wedding just before new year my Sister in Law “reminded” me of a conversation we had apparently had about house sitting for them (neither I nor my husband can remember this but hey, we are flexible) and looking after their 10 month old German Shepherd and two cats,  and so we agreed to do it….

I must have been really drunk at that wedding because it’s fast approaching  and I’m getting seriously cold feet, the logistics of shipping 2 kids, with everything they need including booster seats to sit in whilst eating, a push chair, bath toys, normal toys, a travel cot for little him – this is not small stuff.   The dog, Poppy will need her cage as the thought of leaving the two dogs together overnight sends shivers down my spine, we might need a few things too – it’s frightening!

Also, I have just under a week to get the house in a resemblance of order as the neighbours are kind enough to come in and feed Pippa and Sophie. They are really lovely people but I don’t want them tripping over bits of “Happy Valley” whilst emptying the dirt tray…

On the bright side we have been to the BIL’s  house before so I can picture the kitchen with it’s hard wipe-able floor, so I know the dining room carpet is safe.  We will have cbeebies and a DVD player for afternoons while the Little Man has a nap.   There is a small bath in the second bathroom which the kids can use rather than worrying that their might only be a shower as there is so often nowerdays.  It’s only Yorkshire, not darkest peru, so no fumbling over currency, worrying about not tipping enough or struggling to be understood in a foreign dialect – ok so there might be a little bit of that – hehehe.

My sister in law (bless her) has kindly provided us with a list of parks to visit, where to find the swimming pool and cinemas, some local museums, the “last of the summer wine bus tour” too!  I have had a good look at http://www.geocaching.com and I’m really looking forward to an almost fresh field of attainable geocaches (we did a few last year in the area), the town itself is also really cute and has many different shops to look at, so we will be well entertained.

I know what you are thinking, I worry too much.  It’s true.  I have a big fear of the unknown since the smalls arrive, I like to plan stuff out not go off in my own little spontaneous way like I used too.  I pour over websites of the intended location especially the accommodations,  I need to know I can feed them and keep them safe and warm – old mother hen!!!

I’m sure  everything will really be brilliant, the kids will behave and not break the ornaments, the dogs will get on great (but not too great!)  The husband will be  supersupportive and we will have a really great break, as with Cardiff, sometimes a holiday without expectations is often better than one longed for and placed on a pedestal, I will of course let you know how we get on.

Image credits

Mermaid Quay by Me

“Hoovering up the mess from” Flickr  by Sad Old Biker

“Don’t worry everything is going to be amazing”  from Flickr by Supercapacity

Freetime Quandry

This coming Monday morning, my son is going to attend nursery for the first time on his own and I will have for the first time in 3 1/2 years a morning off, 3 precious hours to do with as I want.

I know what I’m not going to do,
I’m not coming back home,
I’m not going to turn on the laptop – at all!
I’m not doing housework
I’m not running errands
I’m not going to the dentist, the doctor or the optician.
I’m not cleaning the car
I’m not doing gardening
I’m going to do something for me – but I don’t know what….

Here is the shortlist of what I think I might do, but it’s a bit dull I would love some suggestions or you can tell me which one you think I should do…

A) Take the dog out for a good long walk probably Geocaching
B) Go Swimming
C) Book a massage or something

Told you it was dull – help!

Kreativ Blogger

This Meme was a bit harder than the last one – also tagged by Susie at NewDayNewLesson 🙂
7 things you may not know about me – here goes….

1) I have lived in 9 different counties

London, Avon, Northamptonshire, South Gloucestershire, City of Bristol, Lancashire, Cambridge, Gloucestershire, Wiltshire.

2) I was packing a parachute when I met my husband to be, I had a particularly bitchy boss at the time and I used to imagine it was her head and bash it into that bag realllly hard!

3) I have a Higher National Diploma in Hotel and Catering Management but still manage to burn water… I did learn some particularly useful napkin folds 😉

4) I am a huge fan of 1970’s childrens TV, I love Ivor the Engine, Bagpuss, the Clangers, Mr. Ben, Chigley, Trumpton and Camberwickgreen and others and try and get my smalls to watch them too.

5) I’m a Sims3 player, I love platform games but none so much as the Sims, I started playing steadily many years ago with The Sims – usually when the grand prix was on, when Sims2 came out I was still pre children but when Sims3 came out I had the little miss already – no excuse! It’s on my laptop now so it’s easier to play LOL!

6) My Gramp once took me on a tour of London trip when I was about 9, it was awesome, we took a boat down the Thames and rode on the tube and trains and busses.

7) I have placed 13 Geocaches and found 605 (at time of writing). My Caches are in Dorset, Wiltshire and South Glos and we have cached in England, Wales and Portugal. My favourite are virtual caches because I like the icon which is a little ghost. You can find out about Geocaching at www.geocaching.com

I have only just tagged 10 other bloggers in the 10 things that make me happy Meme and I’m so new to this game I’m not sure who else has done it so once again, I don’t want to make a nuisance of myself so I’m not going to tag, if you fancy a go – go to it!

So what do you think?

Hello world!

I’m new to this blog thing, it’s my first post – can you tell?  I’m not a writer or particularly literate, I certainly can’t spell and I make no promises about having anything interesting to say.  I’m here because as a mother of two toddlers I spend most of my days talking about things that interest a 3 year old girl and a 2 year old boy, or to my other mummsy friends about what their little darlings are doing so splendidly…  It gets a tad boring but it is also a novel colourful world of amusement and wonder, so I may end up telling you too much about that anyway!

My career before the children was not very interesting, to me anyway, I live in a small rural town in Wiltshire I like it, it suits me, I’m married, I enjoy wine, I geocache whenever I can, I twitter regularly and I play facebook games and Sims3 given a space of peace and quiet to do so. Fairly ordinary and, oh yes, quickly approaching my 40th birthday which is giving me a lot of cause to be pensive.

So that’s me, some of it, there may be more…..