We spent Friday in Bristol, Rhode Island. I like going to Bristol because it is the one spot in Rhode Island connected to my family. My ancestors lived in Bristol in the 1600s, before moving rather quickly on to Connecticut. My family, however, is in no way connected to Blithewold Mansion, which is where we spent Friday.
Two Christmases ago, Meg, Clare and I went with my mother-in-law to see the Christmas decorations at Blithewold. We loved it. My tea-loving children were especially fond of the tea set emphasis in the decorations. However, there's not much to see in the gardens in December so I've been wanting to return. We love gardens!
While planning our activities for this trip, I read that Blithewold was having a family fun day so I put it on the schedule. We arrived a few minutes late but in plenty of time to spread out our picnic blanket on the lawn and enjoy the children's concert. The musician was a Music Together teacher and had the ability to teach musical concepts while having great fun. He used a variety of drums and Renaissance-type instruments to keep everyone interested. Being on the huge lawn the kids could participate as they wanted. Meg danced with a group of kids right by the musician. Clare danced some and snacked some. Anne crawled around on the blanket and waved around the little bell instrument that all the kids received.
After the concert, the kids made maracas with cups, rice and beads. They ate pizza and lined up for face painting. Meg chose to be a tiger while Clare became a cat.
We then headed to the mansion. Meg loves all things Victorian and she was quite taken with this house. (On that note, we've enjoyed all the beautiful Victorian homes throughout Providence as well). At Blithewold Meg's favorite room was a little girl's room decorated in the white cottage Victorian style. She was ready to take the writing desk home immediately.
Finally we were able to make our way out to the gardens. The girls loved the bamboo garden and there were so many areas where water fairies would be quite at home.
After we left Blithewold, we drove to the charming town of Warren for clam cakes and chowder. We happened upon a little beach with a playground and stopped for awhile.
We ended our day with one of our favorite activities--free Friday evenings at the Providence Children's Museum. They have such a wonderful variety of activities, but the water room remains a favorite.
Overall a busy but very enjoyable day.