Relaxing with the children – yes it is possible!

by ParentalChoice
in Holidays, Children
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A traditional Punch and Judy booth.

A traditional Punch and Judy booth. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I think we actually achieved the impossible this weekend – well almost! We went away for a long weekend with the girls and actually relaxed. It was heavenly. It was a bank holiday weekend that even the weather didn’t spoil!

After our fairly disastrous week in France earlier this summer, I was feeling pretty depressed about family holidays to be honest. I just couldn’t see how it was possible to look after a baby and a toddler and still be able to relax. After all going on a self-catering holiday means doing exactly the same things that you would do at home but in a different location. And one, let’s be honest, that you don’t know very well and where you don’t have all of the usual distractions to keep your kids happy.

So it was with a rather heavy heart that we set off this weekend to go to Dorset to a “family hotel”. I thought that it was going to be a complete waste of time and money. The weather was supposed to be awful and the reviews on tripadvisor promised a real disappointment. It really could not have been more wrong.

We went to Moonfleet Manor in Dorset. It took us ages to get there because everyone and his uncle decided to drive down the single lane to Weymouth but fortunately super star husband had rigged up a screen and DVD player to the back of my seat and Daughter no. 1 was engrossed for 4 hours in Peppa Pig and Pingu. Bliss! The hotel, when we finally got there, is in the middle of nowhere looking out to sea. It is blissfully calm and tranquil with not another building in site. Real English countryside – a bit of a treat for us suburbanites! We had interconnecting rooms, which although on the small side, had views out to sea and were perfect for the four of us. Even better was the fact that the hotel restaurant (what amazing food! I think I’ve put on a stone at least!) was right below which meant that the baby monitor worked the whole time. The result: dinner with my wonderful husband whilst still being able to keep an eye on the girls!

During the day, there was a crèche for the girls which we could hardly keep them out of; a pool (which could have done with a bit of sprucing up); a huge indoor playbarn and tons of space for them to run around outside. For us, there was several lounges in which to sit back and relax with the papers; a spa (real bliss!); a snooker room; bowling alley and cinema room. And if you were bored of the hotel, there was loads to do in and around Weymouth. On the one sunny day over the weekend, we even had a typical English family day at the seaside with husband and Daughter no. 1 building sandcastles, burying each other and generally having a real laugh. Plus we watched a Punch & Judy show, quickly followed by fish and chips for lunch. Now who says that holidaying in the UK can’t be fun?!

The elements of having on hand childcare and having everything done for us whilst we were there was just amazing. It meant that Husband and I got some quality time together and we got to play with the children. The only one down side to all of this was that our interconnecting rooms meant that we heard everything at 6am when they both woke up (so no lie-in!) but other than that I think we did actually achieve the impossible – a relaxing weekend for the whole family!

Thank you to the staff at Moonfleet Manor for being so friendly and looking after us so well. It was really appreciated!

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