Last week I've was away in Tullow, Co. Carlow, with my parents, boyfriend and son. I planned to put up some new posts but unfortunately the wifi situation isn't great (explained further down). We stayed in a house lodge on the grounds of the Mount Wolseley Hotel, Spa and Golf Resort.
All my pictures below are all mixed up so I'm just going to fly into the week! We arrived around 4pm on Saturday 20th June, my parents had just arrived before us. We unpacked the car and headed off for a food shop. We then sat around and chilled for the evening :)
Sunday, we went to Rancho Reilly's Pet Farm. They are only open Saturday and Sunday during the year, and weekdays then in July and August (school holidays). We got there around lunch time and we headed inside to pay the admission fee of €3 per adult (€6 per child over 1). There were 4 adults and 1 baby under 1 we were allowed go in for €10 as the lady at the till offered and said we wouldn't be doing much on the grounds anyway!
When we left the indoor area (playzone and cafe/shop) it started to rain a little so we dashed straight for the petting house, in here were reptiles and rabbits etc. This is where the 'outdoor staff' decided it would be a good idea to put a huge snake on me and Daniel! He overheard me saying to Dan I wasn't going near the thing! It was HUGE! Luckily the snake's head just sat in my handbag and wasn't wiggling around the place! Then he put the snake on Daniel and then tried to put a baby snake on Alex's leg when my dad was holding him! Alex started to read for it and nearly had him when we warned the staff Alex would put the snake in his mouth, a bit silly of him to try to give a baby a live snake to touch - Alex is strong and would tug the snake too hard.
We then strolled around and looked the geese and pigs. Alex didn't like the geese when one started squawking at him, my dad didn't realize until I said it to him that he was starting to get upset. We moved on, there was a sand pit, a playground for older kids, a 'wheels zone' that had tricycles, bikes, and a few cozy coupe cars. We sat Alex into one but he was too small and tried to eat the wheel! We then moved onto the disco bus, I had to admit the music was a bit too loud for my liking for a children's place. There was a Shetland pony and donkey (they looked disheveled :( ). We strolled around, there is a barrel train, trampolines, more animals (sheep), more playground stuff and that's pretty much it. Inside then they have a cafe and an indoor playzone. I think it's great for children, lots of space to run around and play. I would definitely recommend not taking young babies and toddlers because there isn't much for them except a swing! Despite this we had a good day out.
From here on everything will be pretty mixed! We went to Rathwood and The Chocolate Garden. The Chocolate Factory of Ireland was a big let down in terms of what we were expecting. We thought it was a tour around a chocolate factory. When we walked inside there are chocolate moulds of different things on display, like footballs, and other chocolate treats. They have hot drinks, milkshakes and sundaes. I got a mint chocolate sundae which was delicious, it had a scoop of mint ice cream, a scoop of chocolate ice cream, chocolate chips sprinkled and a dollop of cream on top. Daniel for a milkshake, my parents got a coffee and a scone. The food and drinks were delicious, my mouth is watering over the ice cream, it was amazing! You can make chocolate in moulds for €10 (with a free scoop of ice cream) but we passed!
We went outside to the play area, sand pit, slide, boat, head slots and took some photo's with Alex. We then walked up a path to the Rathwood centre. Rathwood is a lovely modern shopping place, it has unusual brands and shops within the centre. There is a garden centre, furniture for sale, stone, sheds, the maze of Ireland, a falconry, a teddy bear picnic, a playground, a restaurant, and lots of lovely bits.
We went back to Rathwood a second time and went to the Restaurant and playground as we hadn't done the first time. We went to the falconry but it was closed from 1-2pm. We wanted to pick up some pressies/gifts for family the second time.
We went to Greenan Farm Museum and Maze. They have a lovely nature walk, a treasure hunt, farm museum, a house with old Irish stuff inside from 1920's. There is a tea room there but only open weekends until July and August. We really enjoyed this day out. Alex got to see horses, a donkey, chickens, turkey, a peacock, rooster, pigs, butterflies and more. He is such a nature baby. He loved walking through the nature walk in his daddy's arms exploring and looking around at all the tree's. He tried reaching up at all the tree's and loved just looking around.
We went into the maze, maneuvering a buggy wasn't the easiest thing considering other people were walking around, a couple with a big dog and another family with a buggy! My mom has this trick with maze's that if you decide to go left or right, stay going that direction the entire time and you'll get to the centre/exit. Alex didn't mind the maze but once we got into the centre he got fussy! Mom and I left with Alex, as we all had a plan to get out of the maze! My dad and Daniel both got phone calls so ended up dragging behind! We got lost and dad found us and got us out, Daniel was still inside but found his way out, luckily he found one of Alex dummies and strap on his way out because we'd have never found it if we tried!!
|My parents at the entrance to the farm museum|
We went for a stroll to the playground on the hotel grounds twice. One evening I went with my parents and Alex and the second time Daniel, Alex and I went. Alex went on the swings, a motorbike roundabout, slide (with me) and on a few bouncy things! He was a bit small to get the full advantage of the playground but he still giggled and smiled. There was also a basketball court and tennis court there too.
The hotel has a leisure centre, gym and pool. We took full advantage and went to the pool every day except Wednesday, to give Alex a break. We went swimming for 30-45 minutes a day. We had a blow up swim chair for Alex to use some of the time, but because of his swimming lessons he loved being in the water without it. We brought in some squirt bath toys for him to play with a chew on (these were great fun for the adults too ;)). This was the first time I went swimming with Alex so I took full advantage and loved it.
We went into Carlow town to have a stroll around, I broke the bank in Penneys and New Look. My mom heard the Penneys in Carlow is great and has some sort of student price thing but it wasn't any different to any others! Another night me and Dan went to Carlow to go to see Jurassic World. We bought Alex a new toy and a book, and I got my mom a new eye shadow palette ( a cheaper version of Urban Decay's naked ones) - cheaper because she's not a huge makeup pro but it may be good to get her into smokey eyes ;).
|The ladies ;)|
I love how my hair looks in the sun ;)
I know Alex won't remember the holiday and won't remember the things we did but the memories made will be treasured forever! We will definitely return to the hotel because it is great for families and I highly recommend it for families. You could stay in the hotel all week if you wanted because there is great places and activities for children. There is a soft play room, teen room, family den, activities room, high tea (3 course meal) for children, a spa, golf course and gorgeous decor :D It is a bit expensive for the lodge but it's well worth it!
Lots of Love