Kit's been showing an interest in castles recently. Mainly I think because he aspires to be 'Mike the Knight' but it doesn't really matter why, I'm just keen for him to explore what interests him. We've been to a lot of the National Trust properties closeby and I've been trying to pass them off as castle-like but I thought, as a treat, I'd attempt to take Kit to an actual castle, Bodiam Castle (I say attempt because my sense of direction when driving is dreadful and I don't have a navigator so I don't tend to like to drive places I don't already know how to get to). We made it to Bodiam fine though, and it was only an hour down the A21 from where we live, so I think we might go another time too. It was a really lovely place to go on a sunny day, which thankfully it was this weekend.
I would put caution to small legs because to travel around the castle there are a lot of high narrow spiral stairs (as with most castles), I was surprised by how well Kit managed them, I was having visions of him rolling back down knocking everyone over like dominos, but he held my hand and either the rail or the higher step and did remarkably well. The bonus is, because the castle is mainly ruin rather than stately home, he could clamber over things and explore fairly freely (within the realms of safety) without having to worry about not touching. He quized the 'real-life' knight who was standing in the courtyard, and promised to keep an eye out for the dragon for him. And he strangely (for Kit) chose to sit and seemed to enjoy watching the documentary showing the story of the castle. Spurred by watching Brave (it sounds pretty bad that everything Kit is interested in seems to come from TV or film but surprisingly he actually doesn't watch that much - about 3-4 hours a week if that) Kit was keen to have a bow and arrow, I had promised him one at Knole but they had sold out, so he was very happy that they did have one at Bodiam, it is going to take a lot of practise before he actually manages to master it though. I think knights might be an interest of Kit for a while now and as a lover of castles myself it's just an excuse to visit them all.
Monday, 22 April 2013
Wednesday, 17 April 2013
We haven't been to the Horniman since they re-did the garden so when Kit started talking about seeing fishes I knew that we should head there rather than just to the local garden centre aquarium (yes I'm one of those parents - I will forever subject my child to garden centre visits, it is how I was brought up. I will draw the line at show homes though, sorry Mum and Dad but looking at other peoples houses isn't that much fun unless you have a commentry from Kirstie and Phil!). It was slightly damp on the day we went but between the spitty rain it was bright enough to have a run outside. Most excitingly they have installed some giant outdoor instuments, to extend from the already brilliant music collection inside. Kit was able to extend his learning from our Plan Toys Melody Xylophone to the big xylophone there.
And it's always good to drop by on the relatives before you leave.
Tuesday, 16 April 2013
We actually went inside the house at Knole for the first time last week. I don't recommend it for a spirited 3 year old as it is very much a 'don't touch' type of place. Thankfully they have a deer hidden in each room so it does give you a chance to have a look while your child is looking for the deer, so long as you can get them to stand fairly still while they look. We were mainly going in because Kit wanted to have a look, we weren't inside for long. He did manage to get dressed up as a Tudor though, which was fun. And he did enjoy looking for the deer, so as long as you manage your expectations it probably is worth a look around the house if you go and are a member so it doesn't cost you.