Birthday/Babymoon Weekend: Part 1

Hi guys – Matt and I are back in town after a really nice weekend away for a combination birthday celebration for me and last trip away for the two of us solo before the baby arrives! Only 2 months until the due date now… wow.

I’m splitting this into 2 posts because I took a billion photos and we packed a lot into our short weekend away! It’s hard to come back today… feeling pretty bummed our last trip for quite awhile is over. It went by so quickly… take me backkkk!!

We decided to splurge and stay at a lovely boutique B&B about an hour and a half outside DC called Glen Gordon Manor. My friend Gretchen and her husband went there for their babymoon and it looked like the perfect spot – a beautiful place with great food and easy access to our favorite place to hike, Shenandoah National Park. It’s also right by a bunch of wineries – we want to come back for those when I can drink again!

We hit a ton of traffic getting out of DC on Friday (right at rush hour… fail timing), so when we arrived we basically dropped our bags in our room and headed right back out to find dinner. (They have a lovely fancy dinner at Glen Gordon Manor, but we booked it for Saturday night – couldn’t afford to do it both nights!) They recommended we check out the Griffin Tavern which was only a 5 minute drive away.

This ended up being an awesome recommendation – the place was super cute with a huge porch, and they had a fun (non-smoking) back tavern area with live music. All the tables were taken so we set up shop at the bar and ate there. It ended up being a really fun night – the bartender was friendly and the music was fun! We shared a salad to start and then I had the burger for my main course – soooo good.

Getting a nice long sleep without dogs waking us up was pretty amazing. We took a little stroll before breakfast on Saturday to explore the grounds – such a lovely spot with views of the mountains.

Breakfast was really good – they served it in multiple mini-courses. The portion sizes were perfect – you didn’t leave stuffed at all and I liked having tastes of different things. We had blueberry muffins, a mini yogurt and fruit parfait with granola, and then a sort of huevos rancheros-inspired dish that was fabulous.

After breakfast, we got ready for our big adventure of the day: a hike, of course! After consulting our Hiking Shenandoah National Park book we decided on Compton Gap trail in the northern district of the park. To get to the peak it’s a 2.4 mile round trip hike along the Appalachian Trail. Uphill, but not crazy. Sounded good!

Some fall colors are starting to show in the park – but it felt like summer out there! Sunny and in the mid-80’s.

We broke about halfway through for part 1 of lunch – we were hungry! We picked up food from a cute place near our inn called Skyward Café and packed it up for the adventure. I got their hummus and veggie sandwich and added gouda cheese. It was really good!

When you reach the intersection in the trail where you can turn right for the final hike up to the viewpoint, there’s also an option to go down to the left to see some cool rock formations. We went left first! It was really steep – definitely took it slow on this part with some help from Matt at parts, too! Also, fun fact: hiking on steep downhill while 7 months pregnant makes you REALLY need to pee. Hello, bladder pounding. You’re welcome for that information.


Made it! Cool – these rocks remind me a bit of the ones we saw on the black sand beach in Iceland.

Then it was off back up the steep rocks to make it to the overlook! Oof – I’m definitely slow hiking uphill nowadays. Thanks for being patient, Matt! 🙂

Getting close…


It was such a clear day – perfect for an overlook.

We had part 2 of lunch while hanging out on the peak – some really good fruit salad (also from Skyward Café) and the rest of my sandwich!

Our baby is already becoming quite the experienced hiker – let’s hope she likes hiking once she’s out of my belly, too. 🙂

When we got back to Glen Gordon Manor, we hopped in the pool! There is nothing more amazing than a cool pool after a hot outdoor adventure. It felt soooo good. Also, how gorgeous is this pool?! We originally thought it was just a decorative reflecting pool – what a nice surprise that it was actually a real swimming pool!

I wasn’t expecting to need a swimsuit on this trip and didn’t pack one, so I went in in running shorts and a pool-appropriate sports bra. Matt rocked running shorts, too. Classy, I know, but it did the job. 🙂 Thankfully we had the pool to ourselves!

This post is getting really long, so I’ll stop here. Stay tuned for part 2 tomorrow!

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