Union Lido Campsite Review: Going back for more

I need to preface this post with a caveat: we went to Union Lido campsite in Italy for the second part of a two-centre holiday, the first part of which was spent in Bella Italia. We had an incredible time in Bella Italia, and had agreed that it didn’t matter that our mobile was fairly ...

Bella Italia campsite review – what’s in a word?

"So where are you off to?" my child's teacher asked, as we chatted about holidays. “To a mobile home in a campsite in Italy,” I said. “Oh, is it Bella Italia? I went there when I was ten,” the teacher replied, and that was when I realised for the first time that Bella Italia had been around ...

Snapshot of a woman on the cusp

I was going to call this Snapshot of a woman on the edge but that was just too melodramatic for what really comes down to wishing away the long, final days of school before the summer starts. So it's a snapshot from the cusp instead - from one tired mother to all the tired mothers, ...

The Photo Not Taken

Marina di Venezia Andrea Mara Office Mum

Two summers ago, we spent a glorious fortnight in Marina di Venezia, a campsite near Venice that's situated right on the beach. About five days into our holiday, I was lying awake in bed, cranky after a bad night's sleep, and irrationally irritated that everyone else was still snoring (including the four-year old source of my ...

Wishing The Kids Were Here: Martinhal Cascais Review

*Review: I was invited to review Martinhal Cascais, but all opinions are my own* I put my book down on the lounger and turned my face to the sun, pausing for a few seconds to appreciate the moment - to appreciate sitting by a pool in Portugal, with nobody to look after but myself. I thought back to ...

Better than a Roman Holiday in Bloomfield House Hotel

Bloomfield House Hotel - Andrea Mara Office Mum

We spent our first wedding anniversary wandering around Rome, eating pasta and drinking wine, and asking strangers to take our pictures in pre-selfie, pre-smart-phone days. We spent our second wedding anniversary sitting in Shanahan's, eating steak and drinking wine, and praying we hadn't forgotten to bring our voucher. Our third anniversary was different - it was the ...

Pushing Boundaries

Colouring outside the lines. Slipping beyond the boundaries. Leaving schedules shivering in the morning chill as the plane takes off for sunnier places. Forgetting the routine that wraps up the day during the rest of the year. That's the theory anyway. But as soon as we arrived in Spain, I realised boundaries were up for discussion at every turn. We needed ...

When is a holiday not a holiday?

Offie Mum - wine - Dun Laoghaire

What’s your ideal holiday? If you had asked me ten years ago, the answer was easy. Reading good books, getting some sun, sleeping in, eating out. Basically relaxing. I didn’t need to go to the warmest beach or the hottest club – my needs were simple. Or so I thought. Until I first tried holidaying ...