Saturday, April 7, 2012

Easter Weekend in St. Jacob's

We decided to spent a couple of nights away this long weekend with our son, since we haven't really taken him anywhere since last summer, and because with the baby due to arrive in August, there won't be many more opportunities for just the three of us to spend some time away together.  We didn't want to spend a ton of money, but we wanted to go somewhere new. 

So we decided on St. Jacob's, Ontario.  Mennonite Country.  Where travel by horse and buggy is not uncommon.

The area is only about a two hour drive from where we live, and is literally 5 minutes outside of Waterloo.  I wanted to come to see the Farmer's Market and check out some local products.  We thought it would be a great destination for my son because there's the scenic train that runs between Waterloo, the Farmer's Market, and the Village of St. Jacob's. 

There are a number of cute little bed and breakfasts available in the Village itself, but we decided to stay at a hotel just outside of it for one reason: the indoor pool.  I personally would have preferred a bed and breakfast, but with a three year old in tow, an indoor pool trumps romantic charm any day of the week. 

The Destination Inn is located just a few minutes away from the Farmer's Market area, and also close to the Conestoga Mall and other stores.  The room we have is nice, with a little seating area and desk separate from the bedroom portion, so we don't feel cramped.  It doesn't have a restaurant, but there is a continental breakfast included.  There are a few items safe for those gluten free: fruit, yogurt, hard boiled eggs, coffee and tea.  For those not gluten averse, there are croissants, muffins, toast, bagels, and cereal in addition to the other items mentioned above.  A few more gluten free items would have been nice, but my son was able to eat a fairly good breakfast with what was available. 

Last night, we went out for dinner close to the hotel.  We tried East Side Mario's first, but the ONLY gluten free option on the menu was the rotisserie chicken, and the waitress informed us that they were out of chicken, so we had no choice but to look elsewhere.  We ended up at Kelsey's, since we weren't familiar with the area and we were all starving. 

Turns out there's not much on Kelsey's menu that suitable for someone who doesn't eat gluten.  Unlike East Side Mario's though, the waitress at Kelsey's was able to help us put together a meal suitable for our son.  A grilled chicken breast, steamed vegetables, corn tortilla chips and salsa, all the for the same price as a kid's meal.  Good enough for me.  And as it turns out, my son LOVES steamed brocolli.  Who knew?

He was happy, and I filled up on a wrap and a side salad with cranberries, feta cheese and pumpkin seeds.  YUM!

An hour or so of swimming followed by a hearty dinner, and our little guy was so tired he TOLD me he was ready to go to sleep.  That has never happened before! 

Good thing too, because today was another full day.  But that's a story for another post. 

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