Sunday, 13 May 2018

Our happy place!

Everyone should have a happy place - a place that almost 'resets' you, where you feel that you can escape, whilst feeling at home. We are lucky to have a couple of places in England that we love, but none are as special as Brighton.
We first visited Brighton in 2008 (we were pretty shocked when we worked that out!) for Pride, and loved it so much we got engaged there a few years later. When flight changes meant we lost a day of our Mexico honeymoon, we stayed in Brighton for the night instead! We spent Lauren's 30th there, and converted our Civil Partnership to marriage in Brighton Town Hall, so as you can probably tell, its a pretty special place to us!
So when we fund ourselves with three days off over bank holiday (rare in our jobs!), we decided it was a great excuse for a trip to Brighton. We have been pretty frazzled lately - my job that was pretty awful is now pretty lovely, Lauren is settling into a promotion in a career she started a year ago, and our baby is no longer a baby, but a talkative, energetic little boy. It seems to be the start of a new period for us, and whilst its lovely, we were definitely in need of a break to clear our heads.

The only problem was, with such short notice, most hotels and even Air BnB's were full. So we decided to try something a little different, and try a private room. This turned out to be a great idea, as our room turned out to be a large, beautiful bedroom with ensuite, fridge, and Nespresso machine, on the ground floor of a gorgeous Brighton townhouse. Although we were greeted by a couple of members of the family who lived there, we didn't see them for our whole stay, and had free parking - important in Brighton!

So on a very sunny Saturday morning, we drove down to Brighton, and spent the afternoon walking along the seafront, going for amazing vegan pizzas, and breathing in the atmosphere.

After working up an appetite from all that walking, we went for dinner at Purezza, a vegan pizza restaurant we visited on our last Brighton trip. They do the best pizza we have ever tried, and we have been looking forward to going back ever since last time!

The next day we ventured down to one of our favourite places in Brighton, the Laines. We sat outside at one of the street cafes and took in the sights of the Laines. We also had one of the best breakfasts we've ever had! Sat outside in the sunshine, it was a wonderful way to start the day, and definitely got us into holiday mode.

After breakfast we spent a while wandering through the Laines and doing a bit of shopping. The Laines is such a beautiful, quirky interesting place, with something different around every corner, so we are often here for a while!

After a while we decided to head to Pavilion gardens to cool off a little. We love that the gardens feels peaceful even when its busy, and Oskar kindly had a long nap, leaving us to chat and people watch!

We then headed to Boho Gelato, an amazing ice cream shop serving dairy and vegan options - its the best ice cream we've ever tried. We decided the beach would be a great addition to ice cream, so luckily found a quiet spot. We were surprised when we stood up to leave just how full the rest of the beach was! Oskar had a great time sorting all the pebbles into piles, and chatting to fellow beach dwellers! We particularly loved his outfit on this day - rainbows and beach huts!

We had originally planned to go for Indian food for dinner, but on the drive down remembered a Sri Lankan restaurant in Hove called Moonstone, that we have visited several times. We decided to book a table there instead, and were glad we did! It's quiet, pretty, and the food is delicious. The staff are really wonderful too, despite them thinking Oskar was a girl! (And on a rare occasion he was dressed in blue, too!). We had a lovely evening, and it was strange but really nice to be thee with our son this time!

The next morning we went back to The Laines - another cute café, another amazing breakfast! (And how cute is the tea set?!)

After breakfast we went down to the beach, but had underestimated just how hot it was. I usually love the heat, but with all the parasols taken, it was too hot for all of us, and definitely too hot for a half English, half Danish toddler who was already covered in factor 50! So we decided to watch the sea from the street above. Before we left, Oskar had spotted the carousel, so Lauren took him for his first spin on it. I watched them, took pictures, and generally got quite emotional about watching my wife and son laughing on a carousel we had watched so many times throughout our relationship!

We then had a lovely slow walk along the sea front, enjoying the sunshine, and the sparkling sea. We couldn't quite believe we got so lucky with the weather especially on a bank holiday in May, but we were really grateful! We love Brighton anyway, but bright, beautiful sunshine definitely added to the holiday feeling.

Before we left, there was just time for one more ice cream stop, and a visit to a vegan donut shop for car journey treats. Brighton, as always, left us feeling completely recharged, and ready for every day life! It was so wonderful to spend time as a family, and the break helped us to realise ways we can be even happier as people, as a couple and as a family. Every time we leave Brighton we are always thinking of when we can return, but w always seem to bring a bit of its happy magic home with us. Until next time, Brighton!

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