As children my parents brought us around this forest in buggies and pottered alongside of us when we were toddlers. The Sunday walk carried right on through to our teens and as soon as my kids could walk I started up the tradition once more. Every turn brings back another memory and each special place has a story to tell. This I love sharing these with my kids and making memories of our own.
This place is teeming with wildlife and it is so beautiful to see it in it's natural environment. We have seen deers wandering lazily across our path without a care but to Lucy's constant disappointment are always well hidden from view when we get to where they were standing. Pine martins run along the river hunting for food. There are squirrels gathering up their acorns for the winter months and in the spring the little pond is so full of frog spawn that the water almost looks like jelly.
But there are two main reasons why my kids love visiting here so much. Two elusive creatures that we have never seen but found plenty of evidence that they do live here.
The first is the Easter Bunny. In the centre of the forest there is a clearing under the tree canopy and it is full of rabbit burrows.This is where the Easter Bunny and all his helpers have their egg factory. Making, wrapping and painting the eggs. Each Easter Sunday we visit this secret place with our little empty baskets and a great felling of excitement. It is always a wonderful sight to see the bright multicoloured eggs hanging from branches or lying snugly at the feet of trees. The kids are always in seventh heaven, running around filling their baskets as fast as they can so that they can sit on the forest floor feasting on chocolate until their bellies are full and swollen.
Also in this magical place is where the Gruffalo and his child live. They sleep in the deep, dark forest and only come out at night. But we can see things that they have done when they get up to mischief at night when they come out to play. Like this tree has to have been knocked down by something strong. And my kids decided that the Gruffalo when he was chasing some poor woodland creature. There also was two chairs and a table carved out of tree trunks that we have found hidden away in the forest.
Patrick and Lucy also think that these wild clematis vines would make a great climbing frame for the Gruffalo's child.
Here are some more pictures from this wonderful place.
The trees have toes here and late at night when nobody can see them, they move around.
The veins are on the outside of the tree. It'S life force visible to all.
There is a multitude of fungi growing here of all sizes, shapes and colour. Wonderful to see.
I believe that a childs imagination is like its body. It needs to be feed and nurtured in order to grow. And what is a childhood without imagination.
Thanks for calling in and looking around the Gruffalo's Forest with me. Have you got a magical place to go to, to let your imagination run wild?