Once upon a time a young man called John met and wooed a lovely young lady called Alice by the shores of a lake in Staffordshire, England. They fell in love, married and had such fond memories of their time at the lake that they called their first born after it. The lake was called Lake Rudyard, and the baby was a welcome son to proud Mr & Mrs Kipling.
Fast forward 147 years and some special mum's and dad's decided to start their own children's festival in a beautiful woodland setting next to Lake Rudyard, and call it the Just So festival in honour of the great Rudyard Kipling's famous children's stories.
Unfortunately by the time I had been alerted to the festival by a friend all of the weekend camping tickets had been sold, but I will definitely be first in the queue next year, as the lure of pyjama sing songs around the campfire and night time lantern processions, together with a firm child friendly bedtime curfew, hot showers and luxury flushing loo's sounds wonderful!
So here is a summary of our time at the festival;
We visited the story telling field, and loved the fun rendition of 'Aliens Love Underpants' a firm favourite in our household. Whilst my son was enraptured by this my daughter went off exploring - a pretty new experience for her
given she only started walking last week.
She was lucky enough to chance upon a
nearby fairy glade. Honestly, the number of
times I have gone looking for fairy glade's
without any success, and yet she manages it
at only 14 months of age. tsk.
We then braved a rather torrential downpour by sheltering in a fancy dress tent where my son created the concept of a horse-riding shark pirate. Unfortunately this unique event has gone unrecorded as it really was too soggy to get my camera out. Ah well.
Once the rain stopped we found ourself at a beach (in a field - go figure). My daughter loved playing in the sand, much of which is now firmly entrenched in the permanently damp and dribbly folds of her chubby neck.
My son in turn loved paddling in the paddling pool, with no shortage of rain water to keep it topped up.
We then enjoyed a soggy picnic and sampling the lovely coffee available. I was truly impressed with the standard of refreshments available: luxury hot chocolate with real cream and marshmallows, wood fire oven baked pizza, Gloucester Old Spot burgers and sausages and fresh spicy Thai curries being far superior to the usual festival fare I am used to - coffee seasoned with floor sweepings and a dose of high cholesterol with your burger and chips.
Well the rest of the afternoon was spent in a flurry of activity; playing in the adventure playground, circus rides, yoga, live music and dancing, punch and judy shows and, oh, the simple joy to be had by splashing in puddles when you are wearing wellies for the very first time! Much fun was had by my daughter with this activity!
Then, just as our tummies were starting to
rumble, along came our favourite food
- GRUFFALO CRUMBLE!
After a lovely dinner of organic deli baby food for the little one, and pie and mash for the rest of us, we bundled two happy, sleepy heads into the car who barely roused when we got home and put them to bed.
A huge thank you goes out to the organisers of this magical and fun festival. We can't wait to come back next year!