I always think that the February half term break is a turning point in the seasons, marking the dwindling of the winter months and a taste of spring ahead with tantalising days of blue skies and sunshine - although still with a nip in the air.
Our three little bantam hens keep hunting out the sunniest part of the garden to enjoy a bit of fun in the sun....
Whilst indoors I am enjoying some floral colour especially the delicate pink of these lovely tulips, an early birthday bouquet from a thoughtful friend.....
I am looking forward to a change in routine over the next week. We can be a bit more leisurely without the timetable of the school run and other activities defining our day. I've had a glance at what's on over the half term break in our neck of the woods and we might try and get along to one or two of the events taking place.
In case you fancy an outing yourself, I have put together half a dozen ideas that you might like to share if you're in the area:
Jorvik Viking Festival - February sees the largest Viking festival in Europe taking place in York. Over the coming week there's a chance to do some 'Have-a-go Sword Combat', watch a dynastic clash in the Combat Arena at York Guildhall or enjoy a performance of Beowulf by candlelight.
Hepworth Wakefield - The Hepworth Gallery is one of our favourite art galleries to visit with the kids. It always has a family-friendly programme of events. As well as their regular gallery trails and crafty art pods, there are printmaking sessions over the holiday to entertain the kids. If it's fine out there's an outdoor play area with swings and zip wire plus an indoor picnic area.
Yorkshire Sculpture Park - Just a hop and a skip down the road from the Hepworth Gallery is The YSP. It's a fantastic 500-acre open-air art gallery with plenty of parkland to explore with its follies, shell grotto and lakes as well as current sculpture exhibitions. The kids will love the current exhibition by American artist KAWS whose voluminous cartoon-like sculptures are on display across the park.
Dalby Forest Dark Skies Festival - The North York Moors offer some of the best stargazing in the country and the Dalby Forest Space Centre is holding a dedicated week-long festival. Activities include night vision using the latest infra-red technology; open telescope sessions; wildlife walks and stargazing; astronomy talks and trails; a solar system scavenger hunt; telescope-making; rocket building and other crafty activities.
Flamingoland - We have had some fun days out at Flamingoland during their winter opening (up to March 6th) when the rides are closed and the animals are the highlight. The sealion show is amazing. I never realised what personable creatures sealions were until I saw them in action. The entry prices are cheaper at this time of year too.
Mini mornings at Vue Cinema - A cinema trip is always popular with my gang in the holidays. Mini mornings at Vue cinemas offer big discounts on tickets costing from only £1.99 (3D £2.79) per ticket for adults and children, every Saturday and Sunday morning and every day in school holidays.
I hope this has given you a taste of what's on in North Yorkshire this half term. Whatever you do - and sometimes the kids just want to spend a bit of time chilling out at home - I hope you all have a fun-packed break.