to have wanted to enjoy our first holiday with our baby

(114 Posts)
pamelat Thu 11-Sep-08 08:53:43

DD 8 months.

Just back from a week away, so glad to be home!

We shared an over priced sad hotel room with her.

First night she woke every 2 hours. Second night hourly. After that she decided that she would sleep from 7pm until about 2am (fine) but then that would be it .. !!

We took it in turns to get up with her at 230am and drive her around (!) so that the other one could get some sleep.

She was then grumpy every day because she was tired. We were fractious because we were tired.

We spent a fortune (which we don't have) because the weather was awful so we had to go to things.

Evenings we were often in bed by 9pm (with the TV on silent so as to not wake her).

I guess you learn, never again will I share a hotel room with her! Self catering is the only option.

I know (or think?) that some of you may be critical and say "well you were lucky enough to go on holiday, lucky enough to have a DD/DH etc" but I can't help but feel hard done to, was looking forward to it and frankly it was a disaster!!

Oblomov Thu 11-Sep-08 09:53:20

O.K. I have TOTAl sympathy with you. We went to Bath for a long weekend, for our first trip with ds. Total disaster.
However, I do disgree with many of the posters.
I do think you can holiday like you used to. Its just that it changes slightly. You have to get yuorself in a slightly different mindset. the requirememnts are slightly different. But I DO think it is possible to go on holiday with a toddler and encorporate .... a wine tasting session... or similar, life doesn't need to stop altogether.
AND hotel holidays can work. They have worked for us , many times going on a package, all inclusive. Worked a treat with ds. We too learnt our lesson and always make sure he is in a seperate room. Has never failed.

If you search on MN, there are lots of threads/advice on compromising to get the type of holiday, you ALL want.

Sorry you had a shit time. Beleive us, it happens to us all. But don't give up. You will get it right.

Even going self-catering was pretty knackering with DS last year as he was waking up loads in the night. And it rained...

This year was much nicer, he was rising 2, much more settled, we were more relaxed, no expectations. And we could all crash back at the cottage in the afternoon, happy memories of nap time wink

But it's still not going to be the relaxing break that it was before he came along, according to my mother you have to wait around 20 yrs for that...

SoupDragon Thu 11-Sep-08 09:53:46

I had 2 weeks in a luxury beach fron villa in an all inclusive resort in Antigua this year with the SmallDragons.

"Bliss!" I hear you cry.

Except BabyDragon (2 1/2) was up at 5am, spent the whole time bolting here and there, ran away had to be retrieved from the beach where she was playing (naked) with another family, ran straight for the pool and had to be fished out by DS2 (twice), didn't sit still at meal times for more than 5 minutes and kept bolting through the restaurant with me sprinting after her in flipflops. DS2 (7) got banned from Kids Club and DS1 (9) got a D&V bug and I spent the whole holiday lugging a 6' inflatable dolphin, a boat, BabyDragon and towels to and from the pool.

Still, at least it was hot and sunny!

Doodle2U Thu 11-Sep-08 09:54:42

Same as Balloonslayer, only this year, when I said "It's like the same job but with crappier facilities" - DH got it! So we did self-cater but we added in a load of restaurant meals so we didn't have to do so much cooking/washing up!

pamelat - I feel your disappointment. Similar happened to us a few years ago. Self-catering in a kid friendly apartment/villa/caravan/tent is the best option until they are old enough for connecting hotel rooms or rooms of their own. Everyone in the same room is just rubbish - there is no escape!

SoupDragon Thu 11-Sep-08 09:54:43

Oh, and BabyDragon screamed for a large proportion of the night flight, mightily p*ssing off all those around us (including first class - bet the didn't get much sleep in their lovely lie flat sleeper seats )

WideWebWitch Thu 11-Sep-08 09:56:08

Self catering has worked for us and been a break WHEN:

- we stayed somewhere really lovely, on a beach
- we had food delivered and put away before we got there
- we ate out a lot. ds is 10 and dd is 4 and they can be relied upon to be well behaved and lovely company in restaurants now
- we let them stay up late and they got up late. Ds will also get up with dd now nad let us lie in a bit so it IS a break.

Doodle2U Thu 11-Sep-08 09:56:19

PMSL at Soupy! What did he do to get 'banned' from kids club? shockgrin

I still remember as a nightmare a weekend at those "luxury family friendly hotels" with 15 months old ds. He used to wake up very early. He was starting to walk and didn't stop moving for a second. I was pg with dd and had morning sickness, so the lovely restaurant was totally wasted on me. We were surrounded by softly spoken middle class families. I eavesdropped a father explaining British colonialism to his 5 yr old son. We went with 2 friends who felt really smug with their lovely (not moving) 4 months old dd.

A nightmare.

Oblomov Thu 11-Sep-08 10:00:46

Loving the banning from Kids club. Ha ha. Do tell.

WideWebWitch Thu 11-Sep-08 10:01:06

We went to a cottage in Wales with friends when dd was 1 ish. It was HELL because

she didn't sleep and when she woke, so would the other 6 children
there was only one bathroom for 5 adults and 6 children
it was freezing
friends smaller 2yos kept bopping dd on the head so we couldn't leave her anywhere (meaning one of us had to be in the room with her at all times)

Hell on earth.

TigerFeet Thu 11-Sep-08 10:06:38

We went to a studio flat in Switzerland when dd was about 14mo - it was ridiculous - dd took over an hour to go to sleep every night and we had to sit in the dark and quiet until she did. Often we would think she was asleep and venture to the loo or attempt to put the telly on and... WWWAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH she would wake up. Every night. It was a form of torture.

Ever since then we have gone somewhere where she has her own room, SC in caravans and chalets.

elliott Thu 11-Sep-08 10:07:52

Our first holiday with ds1 was also awful...he was 9 months old and we booked the same kind of holiday we'd have had pre-kids - self catering in Majorca, in a little town miles from anywhere...
It was exhausting! He slept badly, we had nothing to do in the evenings, he didn't eat well and we couldn't find the right kinds of food in the supermarket, restaurant hours didn't fit with his needs for sleep etc etc
I came home and the first hting I did was start surfing the internet for 'child-friendly holidays' - and found mumsnet in the process!
I wish I could tell you it gets easier, but I'm still making mistakes 6 years later smile We've probably had about 3 or 4 holidays in total that have been relaxing.

SoupDragon Thu 11-Sep-08 10:10:59

Nothing major really. He lost at a game of cards and started throwing things about. Apparently. Thankfully it was nearly the last day!

CatIsSleepy Thu 11-Sep-08 10:11:18

aaah
poor you it sounds awful!
I can't bear sharing a room with my dd
you'll know for next time...self-catering/cottage def the way forward
oh, and make sure you start off with very low expectations-that way if you enjoy any of your holiday it'll be a bonus wink

stitch Thu 11-Sep-08 10:12:05

to the op
you were being unreasobalbe to expect to have a lovley holiday, with the plans that you had made. very very few babies will respond well to the change in environment and routine easily enough to enable there parents to enjoy themselves in the way they used to pre kids.
we took our 9 month old ds with us on an extended trip accross two countries, and about ten differnet cities. dh was with me for only the first two weeks. it was lovely because we could be flexible. had i still been breastfeeding, it would have been easier still. but flexibility was the key.

elliott Thu 11-Sep-08 10:14:21

Sleeping arrangements definitely very important. And I never travel anywhere without taking blackout material these days!
Self catering is ok, it does give you more space, but its nice not to have to cook all the time. Our best holidays have either been in swanky hotels, or in places where we can afford to eat out every night. Oh, and nice weather helps a lot.

Elffriend Thu 11-Sep-08 10:23:38

This is not a helpful thread. sad

We are going away next week for a one week break. Only to a place which is about an hour and a half away and self catering so I am trying to minimise disruption but I am NOT looking forward to it. Even this was a compromise as DH wanted us to go to Spain and I refused. I can't get it out of my head that it will be the same routine and drudge but with worse facilities than home and none of Ds's friends!

I'm being a bit PFB I know as DS has just turned 2 but he is VERY particular about his routine and he is a very fussy feeder (which is a whole other thread) which means us having to plan and take a load of frozen meals (which pisses me off and brings home my worries about his eating) and I could really do without it all!

BUT, we have not been away since well before DS was born and we have to take a baby step don't we?!

Tell me it will be ok!! (Not shooting for relaxing or fun you understand, just survivable without gritted teeth!)

AIBU to really miss the fact that we used to have fab hols and were really adventerous travellers?!

Oblomov Thu 11-Sep-08 10:26:55

Disagree with everyone.
grin hmm
It must be just me and dh (and ds) then, but we have had great holidays, right from the start. Apart from the Bath fiasco.
I will try and analyse for you, why they were so good. But I tell you, we have been on nearly 10 holidays in the last nearly 5 years, and they have all be FABAROONEY. Will try and detail for you why. Once I have worked it out myself.

Surely I am not the only Mn'er who manages successful holidays with little ones ?

Elffriend Thu 11-Sep-08 10:28:34

We have stayed away with DS for one night in a hotel (not our wishes - farkin family thing) and hardly dared breathe all night. DS screamed the place down as he did not want to fall asleep in a strange place, took ages to settle, thenwoke in the night, chatted to us for a while and copied DH snoring. We were all KNACKERED the next day.

Lovely weekend hmm

TheHedgeWitch Thu 11-Sep-08 10:35:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Aww, feel v sorry for you pamelat. What a waste of a holiday. Just chalk it up to experience and choose more wisely next time.

Louandben Thu 11-Sep-08 10:44:12

Sounds familiar! Our first holiday with ds was an expensive disaster too. We rented a villa in Italy, with visions of swimming in the pool and relaxing together, putting ds to bed then enjoying gorgeous Italian food and BBQ with wine in the garden in the evenings.....

The weather was awful.
There was a dead mouse in the pool.
The neighbours had about 12 cats so there was sh** all over the garden (ds was at crawling stage).
There were no nice food shops anywhere.
Ds woke at 4.30am every day (even tho in own room) and we took it in turns to get up with him and then be the one falling asleep over tuna pasta at 8pm...

We were soo happy to come home!

Several (better!)holidays later i'm still not sure what the answer is (esp whether self catering is better or not-think it is if you have fussy eaters and decent food shops nearby) but holidays are never as relaxing , that's for sure!

SoupDragon Thu 11-Sep-08 10:44:33

Oblomov, I don't think that the holidays are bad, it's just that you have to change your expectations. a holiday with small children is never going to be the same as a holiday without small children.

WideWebWitch Thu 11-Sep-08 10:46:12

Agree, they're not bad, they're just different.

throckenholt Thu 11-Sep-08 10:47:33

bottom line - you are responsible for all the needs of your kids while on holiday - that isn't a recipe for relaxing.

Doesn't mean it can't be fun - but unlikely to be relaxing (I usually come back feeling exhausted).

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