I am Suffering Mum

Notes to Mammy…

1. Mammy is not 20.
2. Mammy can NOT drink whatever is set in front of her.
3. Mammy + mixing drinkiepoos = bad idea…ALWAYS.
4. Mammy SHOULD know better.
5. The first time Mammy thinks that maybe she’s had way more than enough and PROBABLY should go home, she should. She is right.
6. Mammy should not jive with ANYONE, especially if they are considerably shorter than her heeled self.
7. Mammy must remember that while a good big meal is a good idea before supping beverages, supping beverages before and DURING said meal, defeats the fricken purpose.
8. Mammy is NOT a feckin Pussy Cat Doll and should therefore not “Shake it off” or “drop like it’s hot” or any other such teenage nonsense
9. Mammy should only partake in Saturday nights out IF she has all of the uniforms ready for Monday, house sorted and general shot together BEFORE she goes out.
10. Mammy should remember that just because she is dying a death, Mini-Me still talks ALL DAY and Princess still POOS frequently.
11. Mammy should not watch an All Ireland Final the next day…
12. Mammy must also remember that while The Him is very kind and allows her to die a little inside, he will also take every opportunity to laugh at her, torture her and remind her of point number 1…

#neveragain #untilnexttime #fml #gettingtoooldforthisshit #gincident #greatnight #notsogreattoday

I am So not a Pottering Mum

Oh Joyful Joyful Joy! It is FriYay.

As it is the last Friday of the summer holidays, Mammy figured it was PROBABLY about time she started some Back-to-school shopsy. I dropped Princess to childcare and headed into town with Mini-Me, fully intending to “potter” around the shops for a few hours, casually picking up the bits and pieces she needs for returning to her wonderful, joyeous, heavenly educational establishment.

I anticipated a leisurely day of “pottering” with my first-born, where we would hold hands and giggle and have treats, and Mini-Me (free from the competitive…sorry, companionship, or the Wobbler) would lavish in having Mammy’s undivided attention and behave like a Walton child…

And THEN I remembered that I am NOT one of those InstaMammies who can “potter”, especially when accompanied by a 5 year old She-Witch who HATES shopping, starts sentences with “Mammy, in the olden days when you were little…” and had asked “Are we going home now?” 1275 times by mid-day. 😣😣😣 No.

Mammy doesn’t potter. Rather, Mammy TROTS. Like a drunk Pig who can smell the truffles under the muck, I scrummaged through the rails of grey and navy tracksuit bottoms only to realise that every single fecking Mammy in the County had bought the 5-6yrs and 6-7yrs while THEY did their Back-to-school potter BACK IN feckin MAY! The WENCHES. πŸ˜ˆπŸ˜… I swear to you. There will be 11 year olds turning up to schools next week wearing 5-6 trousers, just so their Sanctimammies can scoff and tut “I told you so” at their screen tonight.

I eventually found trousers, only to discover that I had been truffling in the boys’ section, and after the kind lady directed me to the girls’ section, my futile search for the right size began again… (Seriously, the trousers are IDENTICAL. Why they BOTHER with separate sections, is beyond this last-minute Mamma.)

On top of the Back-to-school shite, we also had to scour the town for something nice for Mammy to wear tomorrow night for The Him and Jim’s Summer Shape Up Presentation night. I HAD ordered a FABLIS sexyful, lowcut (to the bellybutton like) jumpsuit, which looked AMAZING on Mylene-of-the-Klass online…

When it arrived however, I remembered that I shouldnt shop on the interweb after 2 glasses of malbec and that Mylene actually HAS boobage,so unless Littlewoods deliver instant boobjobs, the beautiful jumpsuit must be returned. How terribly sad I am about that. (I may writento them to suggest that their returns sheet should have a box marked “Not suitable for fried eggs” or “I forgot I don’t have boobs” or “WTF was I drinking?”πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚)

I didn’t get anything. There’s NOTHING in the town, just like all the NOTHING in my wardrobe. But whatever. Mini-Me is now asleep after her day of torture, Princess is snoring and there’s a grape in a glass, begging for mouth-to-mouth. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ·

How was your Friday? Any Feck-it-ups?

I am So I took a week off Mum

So, as you’ll have noticed, I took a week off.  I deleted the FB app from my phone and took a long overdue trip with the love of my life, sans kiddies. 

This time last week, I was swinging off a lampost in central Park in 30Β° sunshine, πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡ singing “Singing in the rain” at the top of my voice and not giving a continental who heard me.  I’m going to spend the next 5 days starting sentences with “This time last week…” πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ 

We spent 5 glorious days in NYC, just me and The Him. (I’ll post properly about it during the week.)  Suffice to say, it was AMAZEBALLS and we really did have the time of our lives.🍏 But today, while it CERTAINLY was NOT 30Β°, we were back in our FAVOURITE park in the world with our favourite little people. Central Park doesn’t hold a candle to Glenveagh with our wee buddies. πŸ’—πŸ’—

Oh how we missed Mini-Me and Princess, and we are so glad to be home safe and sound to them, but taking a few days to be Mammy and Daddy again, (or rather Maria and Emmet), was invaluable. When you’re busy parents, it’s hard to find yourselves in the mayhem.  Every conversation tends to be about the kids. Every phonecall or text message revolves around them. Each thought you have has something to do with the act of parenting. Your daily interactions are mostly about or for the kids. Your entire focus in day-to-day life, is the kids… 

And so it must be,  but to have had 5 full days and nights of just being US, did our little family unit absolutely no harm at all. 

Sometimes, a Mammy and Daddy need to find each other in the midst of all the madness, may it be simply for a dinner date or a movie night, or a trip away.  Yes, we spent much of our time talking about and missing the girls, but we also had fun together, laughed together, drank beer at 2pm, ate our bodyweight, and enjoyed being tourists in a ridiculously fun place.

  We finished conversations without being interrupted 167 times. We did what WE wanted to do when it suited us, just like we used to. We were spontaneous, not thinking about anything but us, and we remembered all the things we actually like about being The Him and The Her. πŸ’—πŸ’™

So while the biggest challenge for me was to STOP referring to him as “Daddy” (and no it is NOT kinky! WTF like? πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚), we managed to have the holiday of our lives. 

 In fact the only thing that made us look forward to getting home, was the thought of getting squeezes and snuggles from the two Dollies. Their reactions were priceless when we got back. 
Mini-Me has announced that we are “never going on holidays again, ever!” and Princess seems to have doubled in size and has learned to use “Noooooooo” quite impressively.  They were spoiled rotten by Ganny and Gwanda.  Of course they were! 
I must admit that I did miss the daily craic here with you all,πŸ’— but I think the week off from writing did me the world of good.   

And how is Jim I hear you ask? Poor Jim, was abandoned by The Him for the Her, for the 1st time in 3 years. Poor Jim my arse.  Jim is probably rocking in the corner waiting for Him’s Daddy back at 6am tomorrow.  
But did we miss him? Not one feckin bit! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

I am Sunshine and Suncream Mum

Oh it is sunshiny and fablis. 😎😎
Oh how wonderful.😎
Let us drive home with Stepford Mammy notions of pottering in the garden, topping up our Vitamin D, naming flowers and passing on our memories of nature walks and such. Let us have a light, sunnyful,  salady dinner and let the children run free while we watch and adore them from the poofy lounger. And then, let them be so exhausted from their frolicking and pottering, that they snuggle down for a long sleep, full of the joys of summer and sunkissed and freckled, smelling of the great outdoors…
Good Mammy.
Now let us be realistic. πŸ˜…
Yes, we may drive home full of these notions, but notions they are, and only notions.
In reality, let’s collect the minions, tired and cranky from the heat at play/school, let us put them in a car of approximately 31Β° even with the windows down, for them to get MORE cranky and sweaty on the way home. Let us have a complete fecking meltdown when you offer icecream but end up with ice-POPS because the cone machine has had fecking heart attack at its sudden overuse. Let us try to get the homework done, because Clever Mammy knows that whatever chance we have of getting it done NOW, there is precisely feck all chance of it being done once the pottering commences.
Let us wrestle more suncream onto the two wrigglers, before having a quiet and peaceful πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚standoff with the Mini-Me about putting ON her hat,  while the Princess insists on removing HER hat to EAT IT at 3 minute intervals.
 Let is not even think about sitting one’s Stepford Mummy posterier on a lounger, poofy or not, because “Pottering” with a wobbler ACTUALLY means following the little turdler, 3 steps behind, lifting her away from the dog’s bowl and racing her to the gate 16 times in 6 minutes, wondering how her fat little legs are so fast?  πŸ˜₯
Then, let us realise that unless you have a fecking COOK residing in your home, having a light summery etc dinner, STILL requires Mammy to go inside to COOK IT. And going for pizza would require gettinto the car again… nope! 😭
And so begins the END of the “pottering”, and the beginning of ARMAGETTIN…which is where you forcibly remove the suncream clad, slippery, sun stricken, cranky, exhausted and very fecking happy wobbler from the sunshine, by grabbing her in your ARMS and (trying to) GET IN!  

Armagettin. πŸ˜…πŸ˜…
Let us then rejoice in the fact that Iggle Piggle is working his blue bottomed magic in the corner and let us spend the next hour feeding the kids who are two fecking HOT to eat anyway and looking longingly at the sunshine that you can’t get out to, and watching the clock, wishing it to be bedtime so that we can steal the last 30 minutes of sunshine for ourselves.
Let us love this weather, but let is not fool ourselves.  

Stepford Mammies we are not.
It’s not all pottering and gleefully finding bugs in the “gawden Dahling”.  Sometimes it’s a suncreamy, slippery, cranky sesspit of overheated mayhem, that will ultimately lead to 2 sticky, smelly and happily knackered minions CRASHING from a combination of sunshine and heat, and the need for all the bedsheets to be washed in the morning. 

(Trust me, THAT is easier than trying to bath these two tonight! 

Feral I tell you…πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚)
And THEN, let us sup on cold grapes and enjoy the not so sunshiny, but still quite lovely evening, in the suncream free company of my boychild. πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡

Have a good one Lovelies. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

I am sipping bubbles in the bubbles Mum-Review of The Shandon Hotel & Spa, Donegal

​Shandon Hotel and Spa, Dunfanaghy, Co. Donegal.

The Him decided to finally whisk me off for a romantic break in The Shandon Hotel and Spa.

Since it reopened in March 2016, we’ve heard only gushing reports about it so have been very much looking forward to visiting ourselves.

We’re a fussy pair you know? When we do get a little time away on our own, we like exciting food, comfortable and clean surroundings and a little bit of luxury. Β The Shandon gave us all this and more.

First Impressions:

Check-in was efficient and quick and friendly. Β The foyer is beautiful; very tastefully decorated and perfect for relaxing with a paper or simply enjoying the amazing views of Sheephaven Bay.

Because we visited at Christmas, it had the added sparkle and romance of the Christmas trees and seasonal decorations; beautiful.

Our room was on the third floor. It was large, spacious and ever so clean. The bathroom was small but cleverly appointed, making excellent use of the space. Again, pristine cleanliness. (I love clean…did I mention that?) The window was massive, and like every room in the hotel, overlooked the bay and offered stunning views of the area.

Tea/coffee and shortbread, a safe and all the usual. The only thing I missed were robes, but no biggy.

​ (Our only issue on arrival was that when we got to the third floor, it became clear that there was major work/renovation being carried out upstairs. The noise was deafening. We checked with reception who immediately apologised and assured us that the workmen would be finished shortly and wouldn’t be starting until 10am the next morning. We were happy enough with this, but had we not been booked into the spa at 10am and had we been anticipating a lazy morning until Check out, I would not have been impressed. A small issue for us, but it might have beena disappointment for others, and perhaps we might have been made aware on booking that renovations are underway at certain times.)

But first impressions were good and we instantly relaxed, knowing that we were in for a perfect “switch off”.

Feed me Now!

The hotel bar is comfortable and cozy and has a full wall of window.

It seems that no matter where you go in the building, you are able to see the famous view. It’s wonderful. We enjoyed lunch in the bar and were treated to good conversation and excellent G&T by the lovely Gary.

There was absolutely no problem when I asked for a variation to the Gin menu. He was more than happy to accommodate Little Miss Fussy Knickers here.πŸ˜‚ After lunch, I ordered a glass of wine. I wanted a glass of Malbec, but it only came by the bottle. Gary suggested that he could open the bottle and have it in the restaurant for us for our dinner booking. This is the first time that I have ever been offered this in a busy hotel. We were hugely impressed, and true to his word, the bottle was in the restaurant for us when we arrived that night.

Lunch was superb. The menu is impressive and the wine list and gin menus are extensive. If you visit, you MUST try the Salt and Chilli Prawns. They were HUGE, perfectly cooked and subtly flavoured. The only other place I have had prawns that good, was in a seaside restaurant in Portugal. They were so good that I ordered them again for lunch the next day. The Him had Salmon which was also superb. (The Steak burger he had for lunch the following day was incredible too.) We figured that if lunch was this good, then we were in for a treat at dinner.

We figured right.

The service was perfect. The food was divine. I had a duck confit to start and Seabass (with more of those prawns!) for my main, followed by a Cheese board to match any I’ve had before. The Him had a Crab starter (yum!), a perfectly cooked steak and a lemon tart to finish. There was a sorbet between courses and the Guinness Bread to start was gorgeous.

(I don’t have pics of the dinner as we left the phones in the safe for the evening…imagine!? πŸ˜‚πŸ’–)

The next morning.

Breakfast was excellent; your typical hotel breakfast, but again the standard was high, with lots of little touches like β€œShandon Detox water” with lemon and cucumber and homemade smoothies. Very good.

Now!

The Shandon Spa​.

Oh!

Β  Β  Β  My!

Β  Β  Β  Β  Β  Word!

We had hoped to visit this on arrival, but it was fully booked. (Check with the spa for availability as early as possible to avoid disappointment.) In hindsight, it was a much better way to do it anyway as rather than have breakfast and head home, we felt like we had a second day away! We checked out after breakfast, threw the bags in the car and were in the spa as it opened at 10am. Again, it was superb; the Reception, the staff, the changing rooms (soooo clean! πŸ˜…) and atmosphere was Β quiet, relaxing and gentle.

​ We were first into the Thermal Suite that morning.

Ladybelles, it is THE nicest spa I have been to in Ireland.

It is bright and spacious with a spectacular glass wall, again overlooking the bay. Jacuzzi, pressure/massage showers, tropical showers, a herb infused sauna and a little room filled with essential oil steam are only a few of the facilities. It is first class.

Sipping bubbles in the bubbles!

We spent an hour in the Thermal Suite and then headed out to the famous Hot Tub on the balcony. You know when you anticipate something for so long that it ends up a disappointment?

​ Yeah, well that did NOT happen.

We were brought two glasses of chilled prosecco and spent 20 glorious minutes sipping bubbles in the bubbles! It was baltic that morning; cars were frozen in the carpark; my wet hair was frozen by the time we got out; but we were toasty warm and afterwards, you can warm up on the heated marble loungers inside. The tub is magical. It is EVERYTHING I hoped it would be and EVERYONE needs to experience it.

We were then taken off for our treatments. The Him had booked the Spa Sensation Package so we were getting Full Body massages. My therapist was Rita and she was brilliant. The relaxation room offered fruit and water and more views of the bay. We stayed there for about 15 minutes before returning to the changing rooms. Afterwards, you can chill with a selection of teas and coffee in yet another room with sea views beside reception. There are also soft drinks, wine and prosecco available for purchase. What I loved most about this was the lack of rush.

So many other spas tend to want you to leave ASAP after your treatment. β€œWhen you’re ready” generally carries the subtext of β€œHurry along now!”, but not in The Shandon. We could have sat there drinking tea and enjoying the view (yes again!) for as long as we liked. It really was the most relaxing few hours and I have it on good authority that The Him loved it every bit as much as I did.

Overall, The Shandon Hotel and Spa really is a jewel in the Wild Atlantic Way. It is beautifully appointed, well run and the food and service are equal to any we have enjoyed in any 5 star hotel, both at home and abroad. The spa is exceptional and the setting is perfect. And for us, the fact that it is only a 30 minute drive from home meant that we could escape for 24 hours and still be home quickly to the girls. πŸ’–πŸ’–

We returned home completely relaxed and rejuvenated and ready to start the hectic New Year. For some quality time as a couple, it is the perfect location. We only wish we had been able to go over earlier on the first day so we might have gone for a walk on the gorgeous beach and had a look at the leisure centre and pool…

Next time!

We can’t wait to visit again, and might just have to make it an annual anniversary trip. (But I’m already planning a night with my Girls in February, because as romantic as it is, it would also be the perfect spot for a girly catch up, gossip and giggles and some first class pampering. Sssssh! I won’t tell Him just yet! πŸ˜‚πŸ’™)

Congratulations to the Shandon team on creating a magical hideaway, right on our doorstep.

If you’d like more information, here’s their website. http://shandonhotelspa.com

And find me on Bookface @the.s.mum for polite and shy daily musings about motherhood… πŸ˜‚

The Shandon Hotel and Spa gets a Super πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹from The S-Mum!

Β Please note: I write this review simply because I feel like it and because the hotel deserves it. Β We paid for our stay in full and I have no ulterior reason for my gushing, other than having had a wonderful time.