A Weekend Well Spent #6: Wedding in Derbyshire

Last Friday, we travelled back to the Midlands for the first time since our big move and for a very good reason – my beautiful friend Abbie’s wedding!

It’s funny because, even though I spent 26 years of my life living in the East Midlands, it didn’t feel like I was heading home. My heart very much belongs to the West Country now and in a way, I think I always knew it would, when I dreamt of living here all those years go.

Having said this, I was so excited to be spending the weekend in Derbyshire and re-uniting with Abbie and her family. We met each other just a few months before I moved away. The timing of course wasn’t great but we instantly clicked and I think we both knew we’d built a friendship that could survive the distance. We message each other all the time, she was the person I nervously txt on my first date with Josh and she’s the person I tell everything to. Catching up with Abbie, her now husband (ah!) Dan and her beautiful daughter Emme was just the best. It felt like no time had passed and the only real evidence that it had, was that our kids have grown so much. It was so lovely to see them play together again. I was also thrilled to finally introduce them to Josh and have a good old catch up before their big day!

With the wedding reception Sunday evening, we decided to make the most of our long weekend in Derbyshire, visiting a few different places such as Cromford, Matlock Bath, Black Rocks and Carsington Water, all of which were relatively close to the cottage we were staying at, in the beautiful village of Bonsall. Despite his joke about the air being thinner ‘up North’ (Southerners don’t seem to believe the Midlands exists) and his ‘alright Duck’ impressions, I think the natural beauty of Derbyshire pleasantly surprised Josh. There really are some stunning sights to be seen, particularly from Black Rocks – if you’re brave enough to get up there. I decided to clamber up in the most ridiculous pair of boots – they had no grip and I was slipping and sliding everywhere but alas, I made it to the top and survived the experience.

The holiday cottage (Park Cottage) we were staying in, in Bonsall, was also beautiful. A real home-away-from-home, with everything you needed for a relaxing, family weekend. It was located next to the play park – a dream for Arthur and right across the road from The Fountain Tea Rooms – a dream for the rest of us! We had an amazing cooked breakfast and cream tea there, so if you happen to be passing through, it’s well worth a stop. My parents also really enjoyed the meal they had at The Kings Head in Bonsall, which was just up the road. It’s a great village to stay in and was the perfect location for us; being just half an hour away from Horsley Lodge, Abbie and Dan’s wedding venue.

Of course, the main event of our weekend in Derbyshire was the wedding reception and it was such a special night that I’m so glad we got to be part of. The venue was beautifully decorated and Abbie couldn’t have looked more stunning in her dress. It was lovely to see her and Dan so happy and I may have had slightly water eyes watching their first dance as a married couple, with their daughter Emme joining in. Watching the kids having a boogie afterwards was also the most adorable thing. Arthur has some real moves and couldn’t wait to dance with Emme. We managed to snap a few pictures and they’re going straight in my scrapbook!

I found it really quite hard saying goodbye to Abbie at the end of the night, as I know it’ll be a while before we see each other again. But I know next time we do, it’ll be just the same, like no time has passed at all and that’s a sign of a wonderful friendship.

A big thank you to Mr and Mrs Dugdale for inviting us to be part of your wedding day. We had a lovely time in Derbyshire, made loads of memories as a family and it was most definitely a weekend well spent.

Megan x
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