A Phoenix Burning

Mommy Escape

So, nearly two years ago, my friend Anywho and I escaped for a Mommy weekend away.  We didn’t venture far, but felt like new women when we returned home to our families.  We decided to do it again, so with our husbands’ blessings (they practically shoved us out the door!) we ventured a bit farther and took two fantastic nights away.  We headed down to Newport, Rhode Island on Friday night, arriving late at night in the misty dark.  Unwilling to simply go to bed when we were footloose and fancy free, we decided on a 9:30 pm dinner at The Brick Alley Pub.  Oh, my YUM!  We were so hungry by then that I could’ve eaten the napkin, but I’m glad I abstained…Being a Lenten Friday, I ordered the scallops.  My meal was SOOO good, I felt a little naughty, feeling it was not a sacrifice at all.

We luxuriated back at the hotel after dinner, drinking wine and reading trashy gossip  magazines without a single care in the world.  (I lie…I wondered about my family the whole time—but let’s not discuss that, shall we?)

We woke up to this view out our window in the morning:

What a way to start the day!  We headed down to breakfast, expecting a day filled with shopping, mansion touring, and eating, with an end of the day appointment at Belcourt Castle for their Ghost Tour.  (That experience deserves it’s own post.)  Our expectations changed a bit when the gentleman at the front desk wished us a good day and said, “Are you heading down to the Parade ladies?”  Our response, “What parade???”  He chuckled and informed us that Saturday was St. Patrick’s Day Parade Day, quite an event in Newport.  As we looked around the lobby, it should have been apparent to us since everyone was in green.  He informed us that driving would be impossible downtown and gave us some tips on avoiding the chaos should we wish to.  We decided, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em, and chose to enter the Parade throngs for the spectacle.  We parked a little outside of town at the beginnings of Bellevue Avenue (Mansion Alley) and walked back into town and did some shopping while waiting for the parade to start.  Lots of neat little shops with such diversity!  Although I had a light coat on, it was extremely windy and cold, so I had to break down and buy myself a fleece, scarf, and gloves…all green of course!  I really didn’t want to lug around my camera with the 18-200 mm zoom lens because it is so heavy, so I chose to attach the 50mm and go.  I was quite limited in my ability to get some shots I would have wanted, but got a few good ones nonetheless.

If you look closely in the top left corner of the next photo, you can see me in the reflection, wearing my warm green fleece and mittens.  🙂

Things started to get a bit wild toward the end of the parade…drunk crowds of twenty somethings at Noon Thirty isn’t my idea of a good time, so we headed out of town toward lunch and some mansion tours.  We only had time to see The Elms and Marble House.  All the more reason to return at a later date, so we can see the others!  Since photography wasn’t allowed (Curses!) I don’t have much to visually share, but here is one photo taken outside The Elms.

These mansions were used as “summer cottages” by the rich and famous in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, left to be auctioned off or demolished over time.  The Newport Historical Society has bought several of them and maintain them as museums of sorts.  They are quite stunning and the historical background is fascinating.  To read more about them you can click here and here.

After a short drive partway along the coast…

…we ended the day with a Ghost Tour at Belcourt Castle which, again, will have it’s own post.

After a long day of walking and standing, we were ready to relax in the hotel lounge over a glass of wine and a bite to eat, and woke on Sunday morning anxious to get on the road to see our babies and husbands again, after one last shot from our hotel window:

What a gift the weekend was!  I’m feeling like a new person.

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11 responses

  1. Jennifer A (Bread and Putter)

    Fun pictures – good timing!! We ate lunch at the Brick Alley Pub during the SGDT and enjoyed it quite a bit. You should plan to come back when it is warmer out and really enjoy walking around and outdoor dining – lots of fun spots to do that!

    March 14, 2011 at 10:56 am

    • We would love to return when everything is blooming…

      March 14, 2011 at 4:07 pm

  2. Looks like the 50mm did you well. You must have done some cropping. Never seen a pink firetruck and fireman before. The guy with the glasses..where those his eyes? Wild!

    The morning photos are be-u-tif-ful!

    March 14, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    • Thanks Scott!

      The only one I cropped was the guy with the funky glasses…the eyes were on the glasses! Too funny…he enjoyed freaking out all the kids. 🙂

      The pink firebrick was very cool…”Supporting Women, Raising Awareness” was printed on the side as well as messages signed all over it in Sharpie marker….amazing…I’ll add another shot of that later.

      March 14, 2011 at 4:07 pm

  3. OOOh, a Girlie weekend away, Yes I AM jealous LOL.
    You are right it’s refreshing beyond belief and I haven’t done anything like it for more years than I’d like to admit.
    Sadly now isn’t a good time as I’m not even decently mobile, but this is a good reminder that Himself deserves a weekend second-hand book hunting and that I deserve a weekend too somewhere once I’ve recovered.
    Not only did you manage to have an excellent time, you also managed to take some amazing photos! Bravo on all counts!

    March 14, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    • Yes…it’s amazing what 36 hours away can do for the soul!

      March 14, 2011 at 4:08 pm

  4. So many fine views to choose from, and you know what I’m crazy about? The tuba! I love the tuba! And I must say it’s been too long since my last weekend away. A fresh look at the world does wonders for mind and spirit. Glad you had such a good time!

    March 14, 2011 at 8:26 pm

  5. How fun! You do sound renewed and I whole-heartedly agree that we all need to step out of our everyday lives at times. Don’t let another 2 years pass before you do it again!

    March 15, 2011 at 11:38 am

  6. Sure does sound like you had quite the weekend, but don’t you just hate some of these places that don’t allow photography… At least you managed to get a nice collection of superb shots despite that though… Can’t wait to see Belcourt Castle..

    March 15, 2011 at 12:20 pm

  7. Zandic

    Newport. Newport is my vacation spot nemesis. We made a trip there when Big Girl was under 2 mos old. New parents are so stupid. We thought we could go anywhere, do anything. We didn’t even call ahead for a reservation. We got the baby and a few bags together and got on the road to Newport. By the time we arrived the baby was getting restless. We were so over confident until the Dunkin Donuts before the bridge into Newport where the girl behind the counter said, “Are you here for the car show or the boat show??”. Needless to say we couldn’t find a room anywhere nearby nor at any hotel or bed and breakfast all the way back. We got a glimpse of the mansions on the coast and the neat shops in Newport. Without a place to stay we were forced to start back toward home. That trip was awful. Big Girl at under 2 mos old exploded into tears. KD drove, i rocked big girl’s seat. She cried so hard. Her eyes pleading with me the entire time to take her out and make it all ok. “Why daddy why can’t you fix me? You always make me smile Why daddy? Why??” We stopped often looking for any vacancy but there was no room in the inn anywhere so she went back in the car seat and the tearful sobs started over. That trip broke my heart and though I know my Big Girl would now just put in her ipod earbuds and enjoy the trip. I have not been able to even think of returning to the place that brought me such horrific sadness. The worst thing is that it isn’t Newport’s fault. Newport did nothing wrong. But I may never return there ever again.

    March 16, 2011 at 6:53 am

  8. Oh this post reminds me of the trip in 2008 that my sister referred to in her comment! It would have been so awesome if you had been able to come and we’d been able to meet you. That was an amazing trip and we had such fun on our extended girlie weekend. Seems so strange we don’t hear from Shrew any more.

    March 20, 2011 at 2:51 pm

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