Well what a busy week – it’s been hard to keep up with my blog as life has just been so hectic recently, what with school, parent’s evenings, clubs and also loads of birthday parties (I’ve counted six in the last week!)
The most important birthday of all came yesterday (Monday). Our little boy Finley turned four. We both managed to book a day off of work so we could go out for the day. Two of my children conveniently have half-term birthdays so I’ve managed to avoid parties favouring a day out - so far...
Picture by Anarchy Photography
I have always loved the idea of visiting a “real” pumpkin patch (like you see in the USA) – I know a lot of places that lay their pumpkins out in a field for people to choose, but I really wanted to actually go and physically pick our own. It’s recently become popular in the UK – so I did some research and found Secretts Farm in Milford (close to Godalming in Surrey).
Secretts is a PYO fruit and vegetable farm growing seasonal produce, I noticed some Swiss chard and carrots growing, but in October they host a PYO pumpkin event, with tractor trailer rides to the pumpkin patch, biscuit decorating and a pumpkin treasure hunt.
We arrived just after 11am and donned our wellies ready to explore. There was already a very large queue forming for the tractor rides (£1 per person) there seemed to be a few tractors running but we decided not to wait and walked to the fields instead. With the amount of people already at the farm we were slightly concerned that there might not be many pumpkins left! I have heard that they grow around 30,000 especially for this event!! But as we reached the field we were greeted by a sea of pumpkins – wow!
There are loads of different varieties, teeny-tiny ones, white ones, dark green ones, knobbly ones and huge orange ones. It’s definitely best to wear wellies - it’s pretty squelchy, but it was great fun for the kids to choose an unusual pumpkin, just be warned that the stalks are slightly prickly. Bring some cash, the pumpkins are priced on their size, ranging from £2 upwards I think the really huge ones were £10 (but they were massive).
There is also a trailer selling pumpkin soup, cakes, biscuits and other goodies. We left with a large white pumpkin, a dark green one and a lovely bulbous curvy reddy/orange large one (£11 in total). The kids then sat by the pond, laughing at the ducks diving under water and disappearing, before popping up again.
Even managed to get them all to pose together!
Uncle Paul’s treat for Fin was to take us for a late lunch. We were pretty close to Guildford town centre, so we went to Five Guys, an American burger chain. Fin decided to change into his Incredible Hulk costume for lunch, complete with mask, as you do.
We had some pretty awesome burgers, us adults had a double burger with all the toppings. The self-service drinks machines have every flavour of soft drink you could imagine - raspberry Coca-Cola, cherry vanilla coke, orange coke, grape Fanta!
We arrived home, completely stuffed-full at 4pm – Fin had a few more visitors and more presents and a storm trooper birthday cake (not made by me). He then proceeded to stay up until 10pm watching Harry Potter – as he said he was not tired at all!
We have two more birthday parties this week – and of course Halloween. We will attempt some funky pumpkin carving during the week and put our costumes together.
If you would like to visit a pumpkin patch I have found a couple more places in the South East – but get in quick before they’ve all gone!
Secretts of Milford, Chapel Lane, Milford, Surrey Tractor rides to the PYO pumpkin patch (£1 per person). Biscuit decorating and pumpkin treasure hunt. www.secretts.co.uk
Crockford Bridge Farm, Addlestone, Surrey
Offers pumpkin picking (laid out for you) - face painting, apple bobbing, ice-scream parlour, creepy tepee and Neverland in the Woods
Beluncle Farm, Hoo, Kent
You can borrow a wheelbarrow to transport your pumpkins, and a donation from the profits is made to charity. Free entry.
Priory Farm, South Nutfield , Surrey
Tractor rides to the pumpkin field are £2.50 per person, where you can choose a pumpkin which they will pick for you. There is a witches cave and a spooky discovery walk pumpkins are available to buy in the farm shop