This post is part of the Tall Mom tiny baby's Best Baby Friendly Places in Rhode Island Series.
As much as I love decorating, fun food, special candies, and general merriment - holidays themselves really stress me out. Maybe it's because as a young girl I hated waking up early, getting dressed up complete with pantyhose, and whisked off to an all too early church service, only to then be carted around to various friends and family's houses. Maybe it's because I'm a child of divorce, and that mixed with my ever present stubborn Taurus mindset were the perfect storm for chaos. Now as an adult holidays have become the ever present juggling act between my family, friends, and seeing the in-laws - some of whom like me, and some of whom...well...you know.
Now that Itty Bitty has joined our family, I've decided to throw my old feeling about holidays out the window and to start anew. I talked to Tall Dad at great lengths, and together we decided to take our first big step: create a new tradition for Easter. Our grand idea? Visit Blithewold Mansion in Bristol.
Blithewold Mansion is majestic, beautiful, covered in flowers and drenched in reflected sunlight from the ocean. It is a grand escape - a perfect place for a picnic or wedding, and can make the most simple day into an extraordinary day.
After finishing our Easter dinner with my family, Tall Dad, Itty Bitty and I crawled into my tiny Volkswagon Jetta and drove off to the East Bay. The mansion was still open for self guided tours, and the grounds were open until sunset. I slung on my new BobaAir baby carrier, and we took off for the grand building through the moon gate entrance.
The mansion is open from mid-April through Columbus Day. It then opens up again for Christmas at Blithewold from late November through the New Year.
If you're going to peruse the mansion, I'd recommend wearing your baby in a baby carrier, since there are stairs, and the mansion isn't truly stroller friendly.
The Blithewold Mansion was once home to the Van Wickle family, and the 45 room manor is still decorated with belongings and decorations fitting with the time of its hayday.
When you walk through the halls and up the carefully carved stairways, you feel like you are on the set of Downton Abbey.As beautiful as Blithewold is on the inside, it's the outside grounds that have truly made this mansion shine.
The outside gardens are perfect for a jogging stroller, and as well as a picnic on the expansive yard.
Several gardens of different styles are on the grounds, all overlooking Narragansett Bay.
Thousands of flowers and trees (including a bamboo forest) decorate the several gardens at Blithewold, helping you transport to a wonderland. I suggest packing a picnic lunch and spending several hours here, especially in the springtime.
I am excited to return again throughout the warmer months, as well as the holiday season. Who knows, maybe we will create a new tradition of visiting Blithewold for one of their Christmastime Teas!Have you been to the Blithewold Mansion? What is your favorite part?