Wait. What's a babymoon, you ask?
Think of it as a reverse honeymoon. You're celebrating this big occasion in life by going on a vacation, but instead of going after the big event, you go before, since going after would mean you'd be brining a baby along with you.
Basically, we're going on a vacation to celebrate the upcoming birth of our child. And getting one last trip under our belts before baby makes us stay put for a while.
So, when we started brainstorming places to go, we knew we wouldn't want to go too far since I'd be 30 weeks pregnant during the week we put aside for this adventure. That ruled out a lot of options, including flying.
I also knew I wanted some place that would be affordable, yet luxurious or romantic or unique, and definitely relaxing.
And I put a 6-hours-away-by-car max on our travel, 'cause this pregnant body doesn't want to sit still in a car much longer than that.
That narrowed things down quite a bit.
Within a 6-hour driving radius of Memphis, we've got places like...
Nashville (3 hours), but we've already been there, done that a lot.
Chattanooga (6 hours), but I wasn't getting the luxurious vibe.
Land Between the Lakes (3 hours), but again, not luxurious.
Little Rock (2 hours), but who goes the Little Rock on vacation? It just didn't seem special. (No offense, Little Rockers!)
Hot Springs (3 hours), but been there, done that too.
St. Louis (5 hours), which could have been romantic, since that's where John and I met, but since we both lived there for a while, it didn't quite feel like "getting away."
Memphis (0 hours), which would have been a nice stay-cation, but like St. Louis, wouldn't have felt like much of a get away.
New Orleans (6 hours), which we almost decided on, but at the last minute realized it'd be too much walking for lazy ol' me.
And then we found it. Our babymoon destination!
After several hours of online research and hemming and hawing over finding the perfect destination, I finally found it.
Eureka Springs, AK in the Ozarks, exactly 6 hours from Memphis!
While asking around for suggestions, a coworker mentioned Eureka Springs, but I hadn't really given it much thought. It looked nice and all, possibly even romantic, and definitely relaxing, but didn't have that unique wow factor.
That is, until I found a place where we could rent a TREEHOUSE!
Or a HOBBIT HOLE!
Or a CASTLE!!
WE'RE STAYING IN A MINI-CASTLE! :)
Our castle-for-two has fireplaces, a luxurious five-head shower, a private jacuzzi, and even a secret passageway!! Plus all the other lovely amenities you'd expect... wifi, mini-kitchen, plushy bed, cable.
AND it was super cheap to stay since we're going during the off season. Sure, it may be a little cold, possibly even snow, but that's what those fireplaces and jacuzzi are for, right?
Plus, reviews of the place online are all GLOWING. Somehow, I hit the jackpot!
This momma can't wait to get away!
Ok, so time for me to admit it. I'm a planner. I spend hours online, researching and reading reviews to plan the perfect trip. I'm not the type that can just show up with no plans and enjoy the spontaneity of exploring a new city. Eeek! That sounds so stressful to me. This lady has got to have a plan to make the most out of every minute away. And thank goodness, I have a husband who doesn't mind putting all the planning in my hands.
So, in addition to booking our castle (hehe, it's fun to say that) and hoping to spending many hours lazing about there, I've also already found about 20 restaurants that sound yum, super cool looking shops that are calling my name, museums for exploring, other sights to be seen, and this beautiful chapel that I can't wait to photograph the heck outta.
Oh, and of course I've booked us a couple's massage. John's will be extra special because it's a chocolate massage. Yummmm! (Shhhh, don't tell him. It's a surprise!) Oh heck, mine'll be special too: a prenatal massage fit for a pregnant queen! We never do massages since they're usually so expensive, so this will be a royal treat!
This is shaping up to be one lovely babymoon!
We depart later this week, so expect for things to be hush on the blog for a little. And then expect a Eureka Springs Babymoon recap post, including a big picture dump, I'm sure. You know how I roll.
Eureka Springs, get my castle ready because here we come!