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I’m not usually one for all that new year, new start stuff. But, this time around I feel a shift, the sense that our kids are getting older and I do in fact crave more challenges.

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My gorgeous sister got engaged this year, so we’re taking the chance to grab a festive weekend away in celebration. Growing up as one of three, our tight-knit team of five will always be very important to me- even with our own families on the scene now. In December, my parents, brother, sister and I are off to Edinburgh, making the most of some special Christmas fun together.

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Doxford Hall Hotel & Spa in Northumberland invited the Mr and I to visit, so last weekend we headed up to this beautiful country escape for an autumnal weekend break. After a rainy week, Saturday was a glorious day and the hotel grounds were in their element. That said, I also can’t think of anything nicer than cosying up at Doxford with the rain lashing down outside. This stunning four star hotel truly offers the best of both worlds.

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On a cold, dreary day like today I find myself reminiscing and looking back to our blissful summer holiday. This year we went to a gorgeous coastal cottage not far from us in Northumberland and enjoyed a beautiful family staycation. Driving past the sign for our little holiday destination earlier in the week brought a definite smile to my face.

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A couple of weekends ago, the Mr and I returned to our favourite North East hotel and restaurant, Jesmond Dene House, for a blissful review stay.

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