At primary school, one of my favourite hymns was ‘Autumn Days’. I would sing at the top of my voice whenever we had it in assembly & I still hum it on days like today. For those of you not familiar with this musical masterpiece, it was in the ‘Come & Praise’ hymn book & the lyrics went:
Autumn days when the grass is jewelled & the silk inside a chestnut shell,
Jet planes meeting in the air to be refuelled & all the things I love so well,
So I mustn’t forget, no I mustn’t forget to say a great big thank you, I mustn’t forget.
Whipped up spray that is rainbow scattered &
a swallow curving in the sky,
Shoes so comfy though they’re worn out & they’re battered & the taste of apple pie.
So I mustn’t forget, no I mustn’t forget,
To say a great big thank you, I mustn’t forget.
Scent of gardens when the rain’s been falling &
a minnow darting down a stream,
Picked up engine that’s been stuttering & stalling &
A win for my home team!
So I mustn’t forget, no I mustn’t forget
to say a great big thank you, I mustn’t forget.
This morning certainly reminded me of this song & it was running through my head as we went for the most lovely family walk in a little wood near to where we live. It was a crisp, sunny & not-too-cold morning, so we put on our wellies (& Little T’s brilliant waterproof dungarees, that we could not be without), put the dog in the car & off we went.
I downloaded one of the amazing Woodlands Trust ‘Nature Detectives’ Autumn Leaves sheets & so we were on the look out for as many of the different leaves as possible, which Little T got really excited about (although I think it was still a tough call whether it was him or me that was most excited!). They’re a brilliant way to really investigate your surroundings on a walk & also to make sure you look all around, as some of the leaves we found were on the ground, while some were still on the trees.
There is a little wooden bridge to cross before getting to the path & Little T likes to pretend that he’s in Billy Goats Gruff & ‘trit-trots’ across it before the troll eats him up! We also like to explore the textures, so used bits from the ‘We’re going on a bear hunt’ story, as we went through the long, wavy grass that went ‘swishy swashy’ & through the oozy mud that went ‘squelch squerch’ & Little T had great fun jumping in puddles & generally getting filthy!
I had also printed off the ‘animal tracks’ sheet, but it was a bit muddy & we couldn’t find any paw prints except dog ones & human ones – which was not really a surprise, as I expect most of them had been made by our dog, Monty! We did find some interesting holes though & tried to decide who might live in each. I find it adorable that Little T will call each animal ‘Mr’ something, so it could have been ‘Mr Badger’ or ‘Mr Fox’ that lived there. He really loves reading the Percy the Park Keeper books with my mum & dad & I’m surprised by how much he knows about the animals featured in them.
Armed with our leaf collection to show his grandma later, we headed off for a cup of tea (mummy & daddy) & a cake (all of us) in a nearby garden centre, which had the best cattor cake I have ever tried. A fab end to a really lovely morning. I think we’ll make the most of the Autumn sunshine as long as it lasts. If I won the lottery, every day would be a day spent like this morning; just the 3 of us (4 including Monty), outdoors, tea & cake! Perfect!