Riverside Lifestyle – Hampshire

One of the great surprises of starting my blog was the friends I would make along the way. Back when Emma was just a little dot, I started writing my blog as I felt isolated as a new mum. It wasn’t long until I met other mums, some of which started they blogs for the same reason and we’d end up chatting almost every day. However, as we all live in different parts of the country, it’s quite rare that we get to meet up. There are a few blogging conference but these are inevitably quite busy that it’s hard to catch up with friends properly! So when Donna organised a special bloggers’ retreat with 9 other bloggers, I was so excited to have a couple of days away from the usual routine.

Riverside Lifestyle front view

We were all invited along to the beautiful Riverside Cottage, just off the A303 towards Andover. As I came off the A-road, I could hardly believe that you’re instantly in a leafy, idyllic location and feel a million miles away from our usual busy life. Driving down a winding road, we came to the cottage where we would be staying for the following two nights. The cottage was surrounded by plenty of green space with the Riverside Yurt Cafe as you enter. We each had a cup of tea and a very delicious scone, while we chatted and caught up a little. We then took a walk around the grounds, to see the beekeeper collecting honey and the vineyards too. Next door to the cottage, there is the Riverside Lodge which sleeps 4 people and is usually rented alongside the cottage. It looked perfect for additional guests to your party and is home to the swimming pool. As the sun was shining, we all had a dip in the pool and it easily fit the 10 of us.

The cottage and bedrooms were so full of character and I was impressed with the kitchen and conservatory area. It was spacious for a few of us to have a chat while we prepared food. There was also a warm Aga to keep the kitchen area nice and toasty during the winter months. We spent quite a bit of time here catching up and keeping up with work as well, so it worked perfectly that we could all fit around the long dining table.

Riverside Lifestyle view from rear of the cottage

Riverside Lifestyle Kitchen

Riverside Lifestyle Lodge & Swimming Pool

After settling into our rooms, we went for a riverside walk together before having dinner. This was prepared by Little Kitchen Company at the cost of £40 per head. It was quite a treat to have the option of a meal cooked for you and we enjoyed a salmon roulade starter, followed by chicken in a creamy mushroom sauce and an Eton Mess for dessert. I liked that there is the option to self-cater too, as this often works better for our family with Emma in tow. It makes meal-times less stressful and takes the pressure off us having to entertain her at the table while we wait for the food. After the meal, we were lucky enough to have a few cocktails with thanks to 31 Dover.com. I went for a gin and lime tonic in a particularly lovely glass, perfect!

Riverside Lifestyle Main meal by Little Kitchen Co

Riverside Lifestyle Dessert by Little Kitchen Co

Riverside Lifestyle Cocktails

The following day, a few of us were up bright and early for a yoga session with Shelley Edwards from Progress to Success in the yurt. Although I woke up to feeling full of hay fever and with weary eyes, I loved the Shelley’s energy. The yoga session was £10 each and a brilliant start to the day. Shortly afterwards I had a beautiful massage from Holistic Hens, which I had been looking forward to. I went for a 40 minute back, neck and shoulder massage at £40 and really felt rejuvenated afterwards.

Riverside Lifestyle Yurt Bunting

During our time at Riverside Cottage, we also attended a fantastic floristry workshop with Judith Searles. On that second afternoon, the rain was pouring so we all took shelter in the yurt. We arrived to be greeting by a delicious cream tea and then got started with the workshop. Having never done anything like it before, I wasn’t sure what to expect but I really enjoyed it. We each made a wreath using a bouquet of flowers provided and I brought mine home to give to my mum as a thank you for looking after Emma while I was away.

Riverside Lifestyle Floral Wreath

Riverside Lifestyle Group shot

Our bloggers’ retreat was such a lovely few days. It was fantastic to have a break (two night’s sleep!) but also brilliant to meet other bloggers and come away feeling so inspired about my blog. It was also the first time Emma had been away from Mummy and Daddy, and to return to my parents house with news that it all went so well – that was the cherry on top. Riverside Lifestyle is the perfect place for a group of 14 to meet up; I immediately thought of family reunions we have with family members coming from far to see us.

Huge thank you to What The Redhead Said, Le Coin De Mel, Mummy and Boo, Five Little Doves, Dear Bear and Beany, Mudpie Fridays, The Littlest Darlings, Scrapbook Blog and Keep Up With The Jones Family for making it so memorable! Have a look at their blogs for more about the bloggers’ retreat and huge thanks to Lauren for organising our fantastic goodie bags.

Disclaimer: our accommodation was provided free of charge but we paid for the extras ourselves. All opinions are my own.

Flatlay of Riverside Lifestyle Goodie Bag

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53 Comments

  1. July 7, 2017 / 9:56 pm

    It was lovely spending time with you and Riverside Cottages was the perfect place, I think I need a trip back their on a frequent basis to restore the stress levels back to a normal level. Such a good idea to give your mum the flowers I now feel a little guilty. xx

  2. July 10, 2017 / 8:31 am

    Your photos are so lovely! I had such a nice time and it was nice nice to spend more time together!

  3. July 11, 2017 / 7:59 am

    Ah, some familiar faces there! Sounds like a fabulous break and chance to catch up with blogging mates. Great photos. #DreamTeam

  4. July 11, 2017 / 8:07 am

    This is amazing! Food, yoga and even unleashing creativity on flowers. What a treat and a break from the mum routine. Thanks for making me daydream. #DreamTeam

  5. July 11, 2017 / 8:12 am

    What a brilliant idea and it looks like an amazing place to spend a few days too. Thank you for hosting #DreamTeam

  6. July 11, 2017 / 8:43 am

    What a lovely retreat, it sounds like you had a great time! The cottage looks lovely and that cocktail…yum! #DreamTeam

  7. July 11, 2017 / 9:37 am

    Beautiful photos. Such a lovely thing that you all got together through the blogs! Loving the goodie bags too! X#DreamTeam

  8. July 11, 2017 / 10:06 am

    It looks (and sounds) delightful! I can feel myself turning green just reading what a wonderful time you all had. The cottage looks like it could be anywhere in the world, it’s nice to see the weather was on your side. #DreamTeam

  9. July 11, 2017 / 11:25 am

    Wow this sounds and looks amazing! Such a beautiful location to spend with friends. #DreamTeam

  10. Tracey Abrahams
    July 11, 2017 / 12:38 pm

    Oh I love the idea of a blogger holiday, and the cottage looks beautiful. #dreamteam

  11. July 11, 2017 / 1:20 pm

    Oh wow, a lovely little retreat for not just lots of friends, but to take the family aswell.

    I do think there should be more blogger little holidays because you can really learn alot from meeting the people behind the other blogs you read.

    #dreamteam

  12. July 11, 2017 / 1:41 pm

    Sounds so lovely! Anything with the word ‘retreat’ in the name always does these days ha ha!
    #dreamteam

  13. July 11, 2017 / 3:21 pm

    That is so exciting! One day I hope to meet up with my fellow bloggers. #dreamteam

  14. July 11, 2017 / 5:13 pm

    Oh my word this cottage looks amazing! It must have been so nice to actually meet up – I’d love to hang out with some of my blogger friends! #dreamteam

  15. July 11, 2017 / 5:21 pm

    All of the posts I’ve read about the retreat make it sound so lush! I’m glad you enjoyed it! Hope I’ll get to join you on one one of these days!! #DreamTeam

  16. July 11, 2017 / 5:38 pm

    Hi, what a fantastic venue for a bloggers catch up. A stunning location and lovely weather. The food looks amazing with a little pampering yoga thrown in. I want to visit now #dreamteam

  17. July 11, 2017 / 6:29 pm

    Beautiful photos. It looks so idylic. #DreamTeam

  18. July 11, 2017 / 8:19 pm

    I’m so jealous! That looks like heaven. Also jealous of the child free night, I’m 5 years in an still waiting haha. Beautiful photo’s x #dreamteam

  19. July 11, 2017 / 8:26 pm

    Your photos are stunning as always – and I’m very jealous of that lovely pink cocktail! It sounds like you had a lovely time – it’s always nice to catch up with other bloggers face-to-face after chatting virtually for ages. #DreamTeam

  20. July 11, 2017 / 8:47 pm

    What a lovely idea – there are so many fellow bloggers that I’d love to have a proper meet-up with! And the accommodation looks gorgeous! #dreamteam

  21. diynige
    July 11, 2017 / 9:35 pm

    Looks like a fab weekend and that food looks so yummy great read thanks for hosting #dreamteam

  22. July 11, 2017 / 9:53 pm

    Wow! Your time together sounds amazing, your place idyllic! I am so envious! Ugh, I am here in the US (ugh for so many reasons!). Lovely all of you! #DreamTeam

  23. July 11, 2017 / 11:20 pm

    Looks delightful and I really like the idea of just a few bloggers coming together for fun times

  24. barriebismark
    July 12, 2017 / 2:07 am

    What a beautiful place. You have such lovely photos.
    #dreamteam

  25. July 12, 2017 / 9:16 am

    Now isn’t this just the best part about blogging! The people and the friends we make along the way! beautiful photo diary of the retreat. Love the sound of yoga – what a treat! #DreamTeam

  26. talkingmums1
    July 12, 2017 / 2:12 pm

    The riverside looks just gorgeous and it sounds like you all had an amazing time. Off for a girlie weekend myself on friday, can’t wait x
    #DreamTeam

  27. July 12, 2017 / 2:54 pm

    Bridget this place looks absolutely heavenly. So lovely to meet up and relax in luxury with other fab bloggers and I can’t think of a nicer place to get together. Thank you so much for being such a gorgeous co-host. #DreamTeam x

  28. July 12, 2017 / 4:17 pm

    Oh wow this place looks amazing. The perfect place to meet up with friends or family. How nice to spend a few days with other bloggers as well, away from the usual conference type setting. #dreamteam

  29. sriches
    July 12, 2017 / 7:04 pm

    It looks and sounds like you all had a fantastic time – Riverside Cottage looks beautiful! Sim x #DreamTeamLinky

  30. July 12, 2017 / 8:48 pm

    #totes jel and glad you enjoyed it and found time to chill amongst activities that both stimulated your creativity and rested your soul. looks lush x

  31. July 12, 2017 / 9:00 pm

    Your photos are beautiful! Looks like a lovely place for a break away #DreamTeam

  32. July 12, 2017 / 9:43 pm

    This break looks so wonderful, and having activities to join in with too… well I’m mega impressed. I love the idea of doing something like this ourselves! #DreamTeam xx

  33. July 12, 2017 / 10:37 pm

    oh, how much would I have loved loved loved to have joined you all! it looks amazing and your photos are superb. Are you a pro photographer? You should take more food photos, it had my mouth watering! Glad you had a lovely time. Liz x
    #dreamteam

  34. July 12, 2017 / 11:25 pm

    Oh wow! What an amazing opportunity and what a wonderful place! You lucky things! I definitely need some blogging friends…I’m sure my non-blogging friends just don’t get it!! #dreamteam

  35. July 13, 2017 / 9:38 am

    What an amazing treat, that retreat just looks amazing, and how great to hang out with your blogging mamas! #dreamteam

  36. July 13, 2017 / 5:04 pm

    oh wow, the retreat looks amazing! Im really jealous! Such a nice idea to have time off with fellow bloggers! #dreamteam

  37. July 13, 2017 / 9:43 pm

    Looks like a really beautiful place. How great that you all got meet up and have a proper catch up with lots of pampering and cocktails, sounds like heaven.
    #DreamTeam

  38. July 13, 2017 / 10:35 pm

    Love the photos!! This looks/sounds like such a wonderful idea, and I’ll admit I did get a little rush when I read how close you were to where we are moving next week (cough cough hint for an invite tot he next one haha!!!) So glad you had such a good time xx #dreamteam

  39. July 13, 2017 / 10:50 pm

    Very jealous because a) it looks fab, b) you all look like you had fun together and c) I’ve never even met another blogger! #dreamteam

  40. July 14, 2017 / 4:06 pm

    This sounds like an incredible experience! What a beautiful place to stay #dreamteam

  41. July 14, 2017 / 8:18 pm

    What a wonderful experience in such a lovely place. Thank you sharing 🙂 And for hosting each week

  42. July 15, 2017 / 12:07 pm

    It looks like a fantastic retreat and place to just chill. Photos are great too. Great post.
    #DreamTeam

  43. July 16, 2017 / 3:04 pm

    It sounds absolutely wonderful. The venue looks perfect. And it must have been so lovely to catch up with friends that you often talk to online but don’t get around to seeing often. #DreamTeam Hugs Lucy xxxx

  44. July 17, 2017 / 12:28 am

    Wow, this place looks absolutely amazing!! I need to go there, maybe after the 6 weeks summer holidays i will need a retreat!? perfect excuse?!?! #dreamteam

  45. Le Coin de Mel
    July 20, 2017 / 3:48 pm

    We had such an amazing time, didn’t we! I think you’ve got it spot on when you describe the cottage as having character. Yep, that’s it, completely! I want to go and edit my post now hahaha! Love the photo of the cocktail: so pretty! xxx

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