A week away to Lynton, Devon…

We left the Friday of a bank holiday weekend (big mistake) it took us about just over SIX hours to get to our destination. We arrived at our hotel – valley of rocks hotel tired, hungry and with a car full of cases and children. The first hurdle…there were no ramps or access for buggies/suitcases/wheelchairs? So after carrying up 4 cases and a baby in a buggy – I was knackered! To then be told that we had missed dinner and were offered just a ham sandwich instead, I was not happy. 


After finding a lift to take us up a few floors and navigating corridors, further random steps with a baby in a buggy, a child and two cases (my mum and sister had taken theirs) we arrived at our ‘family room.’ There was just two single beds and no cot. 

I picked up the phone to call reception to request a cot…only to find the phone in my room did not work. Leading to a trip back down the stairs with the children (minus the cases) to inquire about said cot. 

Back at the room, I was trying to settle the very tired little travellers down. The cot finally arrived and after a bit of faffing by the handyman the cot was up! It was time to make the baby a bottle and a cup of tea for a very frazzled mummy, I filled the kettle, turned on the switch and you guessed it…the kettle didn’t work. You couldn’t make it up. I couldn’t call down to reception…so I gathered up the children and went down again to request a working kettle. 

Kettle arrived. Milk was made. Tea was drunk, mummy felt defeated but nothing a good sleep wouldn’t sort out I thought. 

In the morning we went down for breakfast, ravenous from the lack of dinner the night before. The cooked breakfast was nice but I feel they would benefit from adding some pastries, fruit and yoghurt to the menu as by the end of the week – I was sick of the sight of sausages. 

Overall the hotel looks lovely from the outside, and has undergone some modernisation inside, but is tired in other areas like where one of our windows was stuffed with tissue paper instead of being repaired. I would not have classed our room as a ‘family room.’ There was only a shower, no bath so there was nowhere to wash the baby, there was no fridge, there was also no option of a zed bed…so unless your baby is of cot size you couldn’t of shared a room?! Also you could only get wifi in the main hall of the hotel – not in your rooms. In this day and age wifi should be available in your room. 

I think the hotel is mainly geared up for the older generation and I did get some frowning looks from the other guests if the baby moaned at the dinner table. If they want to become more family friendly – they would benefit from a children’s menu as my daughter rarely liked anything from the set menu and ended up eating a lot of chips (she’s not even my fussy eater!).

The hotel itself is in a lovely location and Lynton was very beautiful. A short drive away is woody bay railway & steam train which was a nice way to spend the morning. I think we got a family ticket and that cost around £18 which was worth it, as although the journey in itself is not a long one – you can go on as many times in a day as you’d like to. The staff were also very lovely and played their parts well. It was our first time on a steam train and I would reccomend it as we all enjoyed it. 

Overall we enjoyed our week away. If the hotel made a few changes I’m sure it would be lovely and I’m glad to report the drive home only took 4 hours – although we won’t be making any journeys that far again until the baby is a lot older. If you do go to Lynton and you have a baby – make sure you bring enough baby milk as the shops do not stock milk powder nearby. We loved Devon and would like to go again someday but maybe somewhere with a few more shops nearby. 

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The wonderful Harrods grotto 2017…

We were lucky enough to get tickets to see Father Christmas at Harrods grotto this year. I have been a few times before and always found it a lovely experience – but this year was even better. We arrived a little bit earlier than our allotted time slot and were allowed straight through (this could be because we went on a quiet day) where we were greeted by Ginger the elf and his friends who pointed us in the direction of the comfy bean bags and sofas ready for the show to begin. The elves put on a funny little skit for the children with magic, silliness and really fully engaged all the children. I have a six year old and an eight month old who were both laughing their heads off. While seated I noticed all the children’s names where written on the blackboard (they had let through three families into the ‘waiting area’) and referred to the them by name which they loved! Once the show was finished they handed all the children a big gold coin and told us parents/carers that we could take pictures while we waited – which we did in front of their gorgeous tree. 

Then after only a few minutes wait, one by one the families were called in to meet Santa and he did not disappoint! As soon as the door opened my daughters eyes widened with excitement. Santa was wonderful, he called her by her name without having to ask it first and also knew that she had started gymnastics this year (they ask for your children’s names, ages and something memorable that’s happened this year when you book online) he was brilliant, so patient and engaging with the children but also had a laugh with the parents aswell. We weren’t hurried at all. His lovely elf managed to get the baby’s attention long enough for us to get some great pictures that we’ll treasure forever and I was blown away by the presents they both received! They were handed a red Harrods bag with a gorgeous brown teddy bear inside, with Harrods embroided on the foot and a Harrods ribbon bow tie!  

From memory I think the grotto had only cost £10 for all of us to go and them to both receive a gift which was more than worth it – you do have to be a Harrods reward card holder to be able to get tickets and have spent money instore in the last 12 months though. All in all we had a fabulous day and if you’re travelling with a buggy like us there are ample lifts to go from floor to floor and huge bathrooms with lots of baby changing space and a buggy park so you don’t have to take it in the grotto with you. I think I loved it more than the children and ‘santa’ certainly restored a bit of my Christmas spirit. If you can get tickets – it’s so worth it. I hope we manage to get some for next year…merry Christmas everyone. X 

Life works in mysterious ways…

So picture this – it was three weeks ago in Menorca, I had shockingly poor wifi connection – I know…scandalous right? I mean it’s 2015 after all 😉 I had to stay stuck to one particular point otherwise I’d be disconnected from the world but I had a 4 year old who didn’t care about the latest Facebook gossip that mummy wanted to catch up on – when I received a whatsapp message from my best friend. 

We managed to get a few lines of conversation in when she said ‘I’ve got something to tell you.’ I knew what she was going to say before she even said it…she was pregnant! I was ecstatic for her and so excited at the prospect of having a new born to hold in the not to distant future (if you haven’t worked it out by now…I’m baby mad lol). Now this next part…I thought were only made up stories in the back of ‘take a break’ magazine and never actually happened to real life people but apparently they do…I asked how far along are you expecting like 8 weeks or something like that. No…no she was 6 and a half months gone already! She’d only found out two days before she told me 😮 ‘oh and by the way…it’s a girl!’ Now you don’t know my friend but she is the most organised person I know. If she’s going on holiday in three months…her bag would already be packed (yep…she is a bit crazy but she’s friends with me, what do you expect?) So this bombshell totally knocked her for six! By the time I got back from holiday a week later and met up for a catch up she’d already planned the nursery, got the pram, brought some clothes and named the baby! The most I’d accomplished that week was a tan lol! 

So as I sit here staring out the window at the torrential downpour wondering why I’ve never been married, why I still haven’t met Mr Right or why I don’t have a ‘conventional’ idealistic life…it just goes to show that you can make as many plans as you want but in the end whatever will be, will be and your whole world can change in the blink of an eye. If things aren’t how you want them to be at the moment, that’s not to say they won’t be so don’t worry…life works in mysterious ways. x