I’ve just had the best lunch hour of my life – off with the office shoes, lacing up my walking boots with eager anticipation and heading deep into the woods in search of the Nature Tots for some sing-along fun. An over-keen shortcut led to the unscheduled soggy and inelegant negotiation of a muddy ditch, which I’m truly grateful nobody saw, but I soon spotted some fizzily animated pre-schoolers playing woodland games along the paths among the bluebells.
Metamorphosed into Aunty Sue, the nervously surreal love child of David Bellamy and Mary Poppins, I wummaged around in my carpet bag to find the stars of the show: Prickly Hedgehog, Jumpy Frog and Tickly Spider, and belted out my best ‘Wiggly Woo Worm’ in the glorious spring sunshine. The braver kids joined in straight away and it sort of snowballed until everyone was up enthusiastically stamping their feet and riding along on an imaginary multi-coloured tractor (I usually go for ‘big green’ – but we made it work).
Rather out of breath after much make-believe bunny hopping, tail shaking, dig-a-digging and with the words ‘I love you because you sing songs’ ringing in my ears I headed back to the office with the most enormous grin on my face. This time I took a leaf out of the kids’ book and stuck to the path.
To be honest, I can’t wait to slip outside and do it all again, but timing is key, I’m hoping to turn up just as the hot chocolate and toasted marshmallows are ready.
The Sussex Wildlife Trust is holding two Nature Tots taster sessions for 2 to 5 year olds. Please see the Nature Tots webpage for details.