Fun in Sussex: My holiday full of festive activities to escape bathroom renovations...

Happy new year, everyone!

I hope you all had as nice a break as me.

In our infinite wisdom, we decided to get our bathroom redone in the weeks leading up to and over Christmas. Given we only have one toilet and bathroom in our house, it was a bit challenging, but it gave me a great reason to get out and about (my husband would say I don’t need one – I love to be busy, often to his home-loving dismay!).

First up was a night in a hotel in Crawley, a last-minute cheap booking to get out the way when the toilet wasn’t plumbed in. We did some Christmas shopping, had a yummy dinner at Wagamama, then headed to the hotel where the kids couldn’t believe their luck that mummy and daddy had splashed out on a luxurious Premier Inn room. It was like they’d never seen beds before. It was sweet they enjoyed it so much, but I could have done without them waking me up at 5.45am...

How have I never been to The Highdown before?

I had a Christmas lunch and drinks with friends at Highdown. I don’t know how it’s possible, but I’d never been to the restaurant there before. It was lovely, and scored maximum festive points for having a working fire.

I took the children to Fishers Farm for the day. They met Santa and my daughter was in awe of seeing ‘the real’ Father Christmas. It made my eyes well up to hear her so animated about him actually being there. She said she ‘couldn’t believe it’.

We used our National Trust passes to visit Standen House for the first time. It was so wonderfully Christmassy inside – how could it not be with about 15 trees?!

We joined my whole family for Glow Wild at Wakehurst, following a lovely meal at The Gardner’s Arms in Ardingly. It was the second year in a row we’ve done it, and once again it was completely magical. I’d highly recommend it.

Glow Wild at Wakehurst – stunning as always

I also had a night out at new Worthing restaurant and bar Vudu, went for a walk on the Downs, went into Brighton and took the children for a bracing walk on the pier where they fleeced my brother for rides, saw the Beauty and the Beast pantomime, went on multiple walks to see Christmas lights, had gatherings with friends and family and more.

It was absolutely brilliant but, basically, I’ve come back to work for a rest.

Read More

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The lights in Offington Avenue are always spectacular
My first trip to Standen House – and it didn't disappoint