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  • Writer's pictureClaire@Thistledown

Wow! Our last blog was April 1st 2020. Reading it back now I can still feel the emotion that poured out when writing that last post. The world was in chaos & we were scared. Scared for our health, scared for our children, scared for our friends & family, and scared for our business.

There is no denying that that the last 18 months have been tough in so many ways - for everyone. No one has not felt the effects of covid in some way & it is still with us as we start to learn how to live our lives around it.

But, as the Summer shifts into Autumn we are saying a huge thank you to everyone who has supported our business through these difficult times. We have had an amazing summer, meeting so many lovely guests. Some who were new to us & who now appreciate the magic that is Thistledown. Many guests returned for their second or even third visit - and that really makes us so happy!

Joining Fern Cottage, Finch & Wren in June 2021 was Bramble Cottage. Our beautiful, quirky cottage. As unique as you may expect from us, Bramble has had the most amazing feedback this summer. From the second it's doors opened it has been fully booked!

Although we said 'No More'!! when Bramble Cottage was finished with seconds to spare before it's first guests arrived - that didn't last long. We have a new, smaller project in the pipeline! Our lovely shepherd hut Finch will be undergoing a bit of a facelift in a few weeks. We will be revealing that as it happens. So make sure you keep an eye on our fb page.

Thanks for reading - we will try not to leave it so long until the next blog.

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  • Writer's pictureClaire@Thistledown

This months blog was meant to be all about spring and introducing our 2 new lambs, Seren all Eira, but the world has had other ideas and all anyone can think about right now is Covid-19. No one can escape it, it effects us all and life is unrecognisable to how it was even a month ago.

For us here at Thistledown Glamping life has definitely changed. The 3 adults that live in our house are all classed as high risk so we have been self-isolating and we are now into week 3 of that, and for our 2 young children there is no school or Cylch and they will celebrate their third and fifth birthdays in isolation. And our business is closed.

The isolation part isn't too bad, we are so very lucky too have lots of land for the children to play in which helps pass the time, and they are young enough to think it's all a big adventure. Plus we can shield them from the realities of this awful time. We have wonderful friends who keep the shopping coming for us and we will be eternally grateful for that. For us, we are scared, mostly for our health, and we will stay in our little bubble for as long as we need to and are able to in order to protect ourselves and others. But we are also scared for our business. We are not able to welcome any guests now or for the forseeable future. It's heartbreaking.

Like many people who are self employed we have worked incredibly hard to get our business where it is today so to close our gates indefinitely is so very hard. We face very uncertain times. The financial side is a huge worry, our income has stopped over night and we now have nothing coming in until we can welcome guests again. We had many guests booked in over the coming weeks and months, the messages and phone calls we have received from many of them has been such a boost during these very difficult and stressful times. When all this is over we will welcome each and every one with open arms.

There is no denying the tough times are not going to be over for quite some time, but we will come out of this the other side, although I suspect life will never be the same again.

It's very easy to feel anxieties and fears rise with social media posts and News reports but lets all try and find the positives in every day. Being able to pick up the phone to speak to a loved one, the sun shining, birds singing, or the flowers that are starting to bloom. And lets not forget the people who are keeping our country going right now, our amazing NHS workers, carers, supermarket staff, couriers, posties, farmers and local small-businesses who are ever evolving to help communities as the situation changes daily.

Stay safe everyone, we really can't wait to see you all again.

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  • Writer's pictureClaire@Thistledown

There is no getting away from the fact that the weather isn't great at the moment, but that doesn't mean you can't get out and enjoy yourselves! A saying we hear a lot in Wales is that there is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes! So get your wellies on, wrap up warm and see what this part of Wales has to offer even on a dreary day........

The most obvious place to explore are any one of the beautiful beaches near by. Keeping a safe distance if the tide is high or the sea is very rough there are several places you can picnic in your car and watch the waves crashing on the rocks. Cwmtydu is one of our favourites, there is something mesmerising about hearing the crashing waves echoing around the rocks. If the tide is out and the weather calm, rock pooling can be so much fun, seeing who can spot the most crabs is a serious game!

A favourite rainy day activity among our friends is The Escape Game in Carmarthen. Your team have to solve a series of puzzles to escape the room within the time limit. Challenge yourself in any one of the different themed rooms. A great rainy day activity for everyone.

One for the grown ups is 'In The Welsh Wind' A local gin distillery where you can make your very own gin to take home. Combine this with a trip into Cardigan for a delicious lunch at Crwst and you have yourself a perfect rainy day plan!

A little hidden gem for the whole family is the National Wool Museum in Drefach Felindre. They often have activities on for children and it's a great place to pass a couple of hours and to enjoy a cup of tea or a light lunch. Another of our 'go to' places to take our little ones is Teifi Valley Railway - a trip on the magical Pixie line will keep them entertained.

Before you head back to your cosy shepherd hut at the end of the day be sure to go to Caws Cenarth near Boncath and get some of the local cheeses. So many to choose from and try, they really are amazing! Pick up some wine & crackers too and you have yourselves the makings of a perfect evening sitting round the fire pit with the hot tub heating up!

Happy Glamping everyone!

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