It all kind of started on the 19th April (day before our anniversary) when we took a bit of a road trip with Stewie and his belongings up to Conlig because he was going to stay with friends for the weekend.
We traveled home via Belfast and decided to stop into the Odyssey to get some food from the Indian Ocean. It was delicious (as usual) but the dish I ordered reminded me more of Chinese than Indian food, besides the point though, because we had a lovely meal then headed home to get tucked up in bed to watch a movie and eventually fell asleep.
We got up the next morning after a long lie in, which is very strange for me seeing as it was a Sunday and that's usually the busiest day in my week. We got up and packed our overnight bag and headed down to Newcastle for our overnight stay in the Slieve Donard Hotel. Neither of us had been before (at least as far as we can remember) and as we drove towards the building I think both our jaws dropped. It's a stunning hotel built right beside the sea with a beautiful view of the Slieve Donard, so it was a great place to go away to and relax.
We walked up to the door and were greeted by a doorman holding open the door for us... I felt all posh already! We walked in and I was breathless at the beautiful reception hall. We got all checked in and headed to our room - we dumped our bags and headed straight for the spa to enjoy the swimming pool with an incredible view and the heat experiences. This was sooooo relaxing! We hadn't booked any treatments but this seemed to be enough on its own.
When you visit Newcastle, it seems like a law that you have to get some ice cream - after all you are beside the sea! So we headed into Newcastle to get some Maud's and couldn't help but get their top selling flavour known as "poor bear" but used to be (and still is in my eyes) "Pooh Bear" because it's ice cream with honeycomb through it. It's such a delicious treat and something we try to make ourselves at home but it's never as good as Maud's version.
We walked back to the hotel and up to our room, then watched a little tv while we waited for the time to head downstairs for our evening meal. A very posh affair indeed!!! As soon as we were seated the wine waiter introduced himself and took our order, as soon as he left a waitress offered us some bread rolls, then shortly after that we were asked for our order from the menu. And what a menu it was!
I ordered the barberry duck with rhubarb chutney and potato gratin and Rob ordered the fillet of beef. Both very delicious dishes! And came to the table looking rather classy too....
Then for dessert I went for the hot dessert of the day - sponge pudding with custard.
We had brought our top tier of wedding cake with us so Rob skipped dessert and had some of the cake where as I was a pie and had both!
I can't believe it has been a year where we've gone from this:
And it's a shame we didn't get to have any of the cake a year ago at the wedding because I would imagine (well I hope so anyway) that it was tastier than the top tier was after being frozen for a year and defrosted. The marzipan kind of "sweated" through the cake making it all taste of marzipan and it was also quite a hard cake (and yes it was defrosted fully!) so we didn't eat very much of it at all. Still we had a beautiful meal and were well looked after.
After what I thought was a great night's sleep on a really comfy bed (Rob wasn't fond of it and thought he was getting a sore back) we woke up and headed for breakfast with almost everything you could want for breakfast, the option of a cooked one, cereals, fruit, cheeses, hams, toast, bagels, croissants... and much more. It was a lovely relaxing breakfast in a dining room while some guests read the morning paper and sipped their tea.
I was sad to be going home so soon after this but we had an incredible time there and I'm pretty sure we'll be back, if not for the night at least for the spa!!!! We had a fantastic time celebrating our first full year of marriage and we had a fantastic first year together. I'm excited to see what the future will bring for us and what other things we will be celebrating together.