Birthdays come and go and whereas you can never wait until your next birthday as a child even counting halves of a year; as you get past 21 they decline in significance until a small peak at 30 and then enthusiasm rapidly declines there after. This year I hit 31 – if 30 made me feel like a proper adult, 31 cemented the fact. Consequently I decided against a big celebration opting instead for a small family affair; a BBQ at home. My Mum made me a Sex and the City cake which was fantastic and I sipped Cosmo’s – what could be more perfect?
I have kept up false nails since the wedding as I couldn’t bare to go back to my rubbish stumps and I wanted to share with you my birthday nails – I thought these looked amazing but unfortunately the bows were less than practical, catching on everything; at least I had an excuse to put my feet up!
Whilst on the subject of nail varnish, I have got very into OPI nail varnish lately I love these Disney inspired ones – ‘Kermit Me to Speak’ (from The Muppets) and ‘Minnie Style’ and ‘Innie Minnie Mightie Bow’ from the Minnie couture collection.
I finally am the proud owner of a pair of GHD (Good Hair Day) hair straigteners thanks to my wonderful husband. These might have been around for over a decade but their position as top manufacturer of straightening irons reins supreme. I got the violet edition ones to blend in with my purple boudoir; all that remains for me now is to learn how to curl with them as well as using them for their traditional purpose.
People obviously know me well and know I love elephants as I also got an elephant adoption and a couple of gifts from ‘The Elephant Parade’ which I originally saw in London in 2010 but apparently visited Bromley this summer. The parade is the world’s largest open air art exhibition and seeks to raise public awareness and support for Asian elephant conservation. One of the gifts was an elephant for me to paint myself – not sure my art will be anywhere near the standard of the actual artists versions but will give it a go! Pictured here is the one designed by Diane Von Furstenberg for the Hong Kong leg of the tour.
One of the advantages of not having a big party is the opportunity to have lots of mini celebrations. On a Friday night, 3 friends took me for cocktails followed by a meal in Covent Garden’s Café des Amis which was most enjoyable. As an early celebration of my birthday and a late one of my best friend’s birthday (we were both in Australia for our respective birthdays) we treated ourselves to a meal at Gordon Ramsey’s restaurant – Maze in Grosvenor Square London. The website describes it as a fusion of taste and style and it certainly made us feel special. Admittedly we probably wouldn’t have ventured there had we not thought there was an offer on, which it turns out, was not valid on Saturdays! However the staff were fantastic and still gave us the free Bellini’s we were expecting and also did a deal on the cost of the food. Each dish was quite small but expertly presented and by the end of the meal we both found ourselves to be suitably full. I highly recommend this restaurant.
The Sunday after my birthday a friend and I had a belated birthday celebration at BB Bakery in Covent Garden. Set in the bustling hub of Covent Garden is this quaint, vintage, Parisian style tea room. The windows are adorned with birdcages, hat boxes and display domes containing beautiful tea cups and saucers. We were seated and then served champagne afternoon tea. The tablewear is vintage style and the walls are white with cute cartoon drawings of women with bakery shopping bags. The savoury plate contained a mini quiche, a blini with smoked salmon, a cream cheese and cucumber sandwich and a role containing cheese and ham. The cake selection was divine and so colourful. There was a lemon meringue, a raspberry tart, a chocolate brownie which was just the right consistency being slightly moist in the centre, a cupcake with strawberry frosting and a macaroon. We were full already but we still had the delight of a warmed scone with cream and jam. Everything was delicious and served with a smile. It cost £33 each which I think is quite reasonable especially as aside from the champagne we also had a glass of freshly squeezed orange and numerous teas and coffees. I will definitely be popping in there again soon and for those Sex and the City fans out there; it reminded me very much of the Magnolia Bakery in New York with the added bonus of being able to eat in.
Talking of Sex and the City – one of my friends got me this brilliant Sex and the City bauble for my birthday present which, along with the return of the X Factor, has me counting down to Christmas!
The summer is almost over; although it’s still warm, we will soon need to be considering an autumn wardrobe. A great transition piece from spring/summer is the kimono. I got this one from New Look and this Paul’s boutique bag compliments it brilliantly.
Our annual visit to Broadstairs was made more exciting this year as we took my Mum’s friend’s from Long Island, New York along during folk week. There were various parades, stalls and bands. Ironically there was a US stall and on recommendation I tried a drink called Mtn Dew and it was fantastic – might have to get some shipped! Their visit made me feel quite old as my mum’s friend’s granddaughter who came is 16 and I was roughly her age on my first trip to New York when she was just a baby – time really does fly. My Mum’s friend has obviously discovered eternal youth as she never changes.
I’m looking forward to 2 weddings in September so look out for my blogs on those! Meanwhile put your feet up with a glass of wine, preferably a glass like this one!