My blog this week centres around my home city of Glasgow. I've decided to name it "Glasgow rocks!" as it's a (pure dead) brilliant city, and also because I watched my first live basketball game this week. The game, Surrey United vs. Glasgow Rocks, was an attempt to bring a little more excitement to my social life. My husband and I took our 8 year old son, who's very self-conscious of his height. Basketball seemed a good way to shed some positive light on being tall. We all enjoyed the game, as well as the Rockettes cheerleaders, featuring dramatic flames in the background. The game was held at the new Emirates Arena, and I was impressed by the building, especially when lit up as we left.
I have discovered an excellent way to find inspiration for nights out with a difference, it's called Groupon. The site (and similar ones), have become essential in my life. I enjoyed the comedian Tom Stade's comedy sketch recently, describing his addiction to Groupon...I too am an addict. Groupon suggests events and places I often didn't even know existed, and the discounts available make going out so much more affordable.
There's a very classy restaurant/bar/nightclub in Glasgow called Arta. I discovered they have started a 1920's Great Gatsby style themed night called Bang Bang, and so we ventured along for our cinema alternative. Singers performed modern music in a 1920's style, as well as some genuine music from the 20's. Nibbles of popcorn and chocolate adorned the tables, and we were welcomed with a champagne cocktail. Husband wasn't too keen, but I enjoyed the evening. My only regret was that I hadn't dressed the part, as many had, in Charleston type fringed dresses and feathered headbands...next time.
Another day out with a difference is held at Saint Judes, a bar in Glasgow offering afternoon tea with a twist. The sandwiches and cakes arrive as expected, but the teapot is actually filled with a cocktail which the server mixes for you at your table. I love the novelty of it, and have booked a few times. Next time I'm taking my friend, leaving hubby to babysit. I'm also going to the Girls Day Out at the SECC, obviously not with husband :) Looking forward to the fashion shows, goody bags, offers and discounts, and a cheeky wee glass of wine while the kids are at school.
Our family days out have also become more adventurous since Groupon etc. entered our lives. We've enjoyed days out at Kelburn castle with it's distinctive graffiti project. Not actually in Glasgow, around an hour's drive, but well worth it. Kids loved it, and often ask to go back, would highly recommend it. Link with more info. about Kelburn can be found here:
I am also curious to try the various Baby Loves Disco events in Glasgow. Described as "a daytime dance party for parents with babies, toddlers and children up to 7 years", it sounds worth a try! I'm sure many parents fondly remember their nightclubbing days, and mourn their loss, but the thought of coming home at 3am, only to be rudely awoken around 6 is to much to bear. Maybe this is an alternative. I've missed the Pirates and Princesses one, but I may well be found at Boogie Halloween; Cosmopolitan in hand watching my 4 year old very competently perform Gangham Style. The Baby Loves Disco events take place around the UK, not just Glasgow. More info. can be found here:
Winter in Glasgow is pretty bleak, we have wind and rain/snow practically on a daily basis. There are, however, plenty options to keep us Glaswegians entertained. We have Xscape, an indoor ski centre with real snow, as well as restaurants, bars, bowling, cinema, and many other options. Xscape is a great place to wander around and meet up with friends. The Glasgow Christmas markets are also pretty good, admittedly not as picturesque as Edinburgh, but improving every year. I also hope to visit the Jack Vettriano exhibition at Kelvingrove art gallery. I know there has been much controversy over the Scottish artist, but I like his work very much.
How do you spend your free time in your city? Has your social life changed dramatically since having children? I'd be interested to read your tips and ideas on family days out, or date nights that are alternatives to cinema.