A babymoon staycation

At 25 weeks pregnant (otherwise known as the Week of the Napa Cabbage), we had a week off together and used it for a mini babymoon – a little trip away, our last as a twosome.

The idea was a few days of relaxation – ideally this would have been done in the sun, on a beach, a flight away from home, but it was summer holidays and those last minute deals never really came to light, so we booked a few nights in North Wales – a short drive but far enough away from home to make us forget about work, emails and what we needed for this week’s food shop.

We headed along the coast to Llandudno where we stayed for two nights and used it as a base to walk along the pretty bay front, take the tram up the Great Orme, visit nearby Conwy and day trip to the beautiful Bodnant Gardens. It was lovely to spend time together and not think about work or rushing around doing daily life. We have a habit of walking to excess whenever we go away, and this was no exception, so I was completely exhausted by the end of every day and three days post-holiday, I’m still recovering. Mentally relaxing, physically not so much.

Fresh air and coastal style
Fresh air and coastal style
Being a total tourist in sunny Llandudno
Being a total tourist in sunny Llandudno
Bodnant Gardens
Taking a break in peaceful Bodnant Gardens

The only downside was the hotel we had booked was awful – I am going to name and shame, it was the Headlands Hotel. A Fawlty-Towers style place where there was only one member of staff at any time (she was the receptionist, the waitress, quite possibly the breakfast chef and cleaner too, and the dingiest, most run down decor I’ve seen in a hotel that could actually be beautiful. There was a reason for this though. Oh, and when I asked about decaf coffee at breakfast she looked as though I’d just spoken an alien language. No coffee at breakfast, no happy Sarah.

We weren’t expecting luxury as we knew we’d done it on a budget, but we also weren’t expecting dogs, and that’s exactly what we got. More specifically a dog in the room directly below us which obviously wasn’t happy with being left alone and let us all know about it by howling all day and all night until the (inconsiderate) owners came back. That, along with the unbearably old bed (we slept directly on springs), curtains which didn’t fit the windows and were so thin that we were wide awake by 4.30, and the knowledge that there was dust stuck down to every surface in the room, including the bed, meant we got no sleep. I had a meltdown over this being our last holiday together and we’re spending it in a shit hole. It sounds bratty but I just felt a little sad, and angry at the hotel for saying they didn’t allow pets when they did, and of course I was overly tired at this point which is never a good emotional state to be in.

By the time I’d woken up from my hour-long doze after the first night, the husband had already been online to book a new hotel down the road and get us the hell out of there. We made our complaints, checked out, and checked in to our new hotel before breakfast had even ended – the gorgeous Escape Boutique Hotel, where we spent our second night in a quiet, clean and beautiful Coastal-theme room, with no howling dogs and a bed I could have stayed in forever. We had the warmest welcome by the owner, despite us being at least 5 hours early for check-in, and that alone made all the difference. A little hospitality, cleanliness and GREAT breakfast goes a long way.

Our Coastal theme room at the Escape Boutique Hotel
Our Coastal theme room at the Escape Boutique Hotel
Coastal hotel decor
Coastal hotel decor

After two nights on the coast, we headed back towards Liverpool and stopped for our third and final night at the Kinmel Spa Hotel in Abergele. The idea was to have one day of total relaxation, where we could roll from the pool to the restaurant to our bed with minimal effort. And that’s exactly what we did.

Located in the country, it’s a lovely little spa which has been open for just over a year. With an underground pool and hydrotherapy pool (which I obviously couldn’t use, along with the sauna and steam room), and a tranquility room which had floor to ceiling windows and a view over the fields and hills in the distance (and the A55 but let’s ignore that), we enjoyed a day of lying down doing nothing, interrupted only by a delicious lunch at the in-spa Thai restaurant, Ching Mai, and the treatments we’d booked – a deep tissue full body massage for him and a a deep tissue leg and foot massage, plus a pedicure for me. Bliss.

The Kinspa Hotel  Spa in Abergele
The Kinspa Hotel Spa in Abergele
The view from the bed I claimed for the day
The view from the bed I claimed for the day
Fabulous food at the spa Chiang Mai restaurant

I also debuted my Asos Maternity Swimsuit for the first time. After much research into maternity swimwear on the high street, I selected the bold stripe number from Asos and despite not loving the idea of being in a swimsuit for this first time this year, let alone as a preggo lady, I felt really comfortable and happy in it. I would NEVER normally do swimsuit selfies, I’ve only just gotten used to doing fully clothed versions, but I banged on about this swimsuit so much – and I did say I would share the good, the bad and the ugly of our slide into parenthood, and this definitely fits at least one of those profiles! So here it is…

I draw the line at showing thigh, for everyones sake
I draw the line at showing thigh, for everyones sake

We then shuffled over to the hotel where we changed and enjoyed a three course dinner in the Brasserie restaurant before getting a solid night’s sleep ahead of a good buffet breakfast and the drive home the following day.

My first preggo pedicure from the Kinmel Spa
My first preggo pedicure from the Kinmel Spa
Babymoon
Our final trip as a twosome, our first pic as a threesome

I’d bought the Kinmel stay as a Groupon offer where we got the night’s stay, breakfast, three course meal and use of the spa for a bargain price. It’s always worth checking out these offer sites if you’re looking for a little stay-
cation, you never know what gems you might uncover.

So while it might not have been the perfect most relaxing baby moon of all time, it had everything we needed – time alone, time to rest and a bit of sun to make us forget that we were only an hour from home!

Diary of an imperfect mum