Sunday, 30 September 2018

Joining the Quarter-of-a-Century Club: My Birthday 2018! 🎂

As a teenager, being 25 sounded sophisticated and distant. I think past me would be surprised by how little really changes at a first glance, but maybe a little impressed by the deeper alterations within. I feel more sure of myself than I used to, and now have the confidence to stand up for myself. September always feels like a new beginning; it's nice to have a birthday that coincides with new academic years, and the start of autumn, my favourite season. This transitional period of the year always feels so exciting to me, and so much of what I want to achieve over the following year tends to be decided during this time. I'm no longer at that point where I get a year older and frantically compare myself to others, wondering why I've not achieved more by this point. Life rarely works out to the timelines we set ourselves, and sometimes, the things we thought we wanted end up being null and void once we work towards them. This time last year I thought I'd be sticking to a career in buying, trying to make the transition into fashion head offices. Yeah... life kinda squashed that one. 

This year I wanted to be festive and silly, to mark my birthday the way one would mark any other "milestone" birthday. I think 25 is underrepresented in that regard. In my opinion, surviving for a quarter of a century is a huge achievement, so I did my best to give it the respect it deserves. Here I am: alive, healthy, brimming with ideas, still full of aspirations and dreams I'm working hard to achieve, and on a path I never would have expected could be possible. Sometimes it's messy, disheartening, and soul destroying. But sometimes it's beautiful and leaves me feeling blessed and inspired. It is what it is. Some people have achieved more by this age, and some people less. It's irrelevant. We're all on our own paths and life isn't a race. We have to do our best to make our dreams come true, no matter how long it takes. That's all you need.

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On the day of my birthday, a warm Thursday, I set off to Victoria where I had a pleasant lunch with my partner in Dominique Ansel Bakery, which neither of us had been to before. The shopfront was decorated in flowers (seems to be a big "thing" in London right now) and the interior was simple and clean. I was surprised by how large the interior was, as so many places I've tried have been awkwardly cramped. There was a counter with a wonderful selection of sweet treats. Along with a savoury muffin for lunch, I decided on a strawberry pavlova for dessert.

It was cute but also delicious, though I wish there had been a little more cream filling to help wash down the remaining pavlova piece I ended up not eating. Over lunch my partner gifted me a lovely top from Lazy Oaf, which you will see later in this post!

I went for a birthday cake themed outfit with Bodyline macaron skirt, and a cupcake necklace!
After the meal, and I'd got a photo in front of the lovely flower display, we headed off to Covent Garden. I like to make obligaatory stops in places like Artbox, with its cute imported kawaii items, Rockit Vintage (though this is definitely not as good as it used to be) and the Astrology Shop (though on this day the place was a mess and you couldn't move for the stacks of boxes in front of all the bookshelves). Skinny Dip didn't have anything that caught my eye on this occasion, and we found ourselves sat on a bench planning our next stop. 

On a whim, we headed up to Goodge Street and walked over to Treadwell's, my favourite bookshop. They sell all manner of magickal tools, but the real draw is their huge selection of books on anything from tarot reading to spells, herbalism to divination, history to modern literature. Once inside, it feels as though you're in Diagon Alley, and all manner of people congregate there. I could spend hours in there, particularly on their super comfortable browsing sofa, but I managed to restrain myself on this occasion as I didn't want to get stuck in rush hour traffic on the way home! I ended up choosing a book on spellcraft before we decided to make our way home.

On arriving, I found myself greeted by a large, flat pink box. What could this be?

I opened it up to find that my friend Sammi had had flowers sent to me specially for my birthday! 

They were beautiful, and lasted a whole week! Every time I saw them over that period of time made me feel so loved.

I ended the day feeling positive and pleased I'd gone out and done something to celebrate.

A couple of days later I met up with my friends Wing, Reina, and Memz to essentially carry on the festivities! We headed to a pastel café where I had a lovely cream tea with my favourite scone texture-- crumbly and melt-in-the mouth. Perfect! It was great to catch up with everyone over tea and sweet treats.

I always feel so relaxed in pretty places! There's something about traditional English cream tea and crockery that fills my heart with joy.

Wing surprised me with a cute little kawaii food themed sticker and eraser set from Artbox! I things like that-- so adorable, especially when the stickers have the bonus of being squidgy.

Afterwards, we went shopping, heaving into Soho for the usual haunts like Monki. I barely buy anything anymore as my current situation requires me to be frugal (not that I've ever been good at spending money anyway!) but it was a lot of fun to window shop and look at pieces with the perspective of my friends to help. It's always interesting to see how other people would coordinate items and make them look good, particularly those unassuming or seemingly garish pieces that really just require the eye of someone with a different style to you!

Of course, we had to take a trip to Lazy Oaf!
We made no outfits plans beforehand but we all somehow ended up choosing to wear pink! Accidental coordinating is the best!

What would a day with Reina be without us accidentally wearing similar outfits!? We did it again. I don't quite understand how this always happens but I love it every single time! The pink top I'm wearing is the present I mentioned earlier, and it's so versatile. I'm looking forward to getting a lot of wear out of it as the weather gets cooler.

Before we knew it, it was late afternoon and we all needed to head off home. I was sad to say goodbye to everyone but isn't that the feeling you should be grateful for? That's when you know you've had a really good day!

I'm so pleased I got to spend such a wonderful time with loved ones to celebrate my birthday not just once, but twice! The kind gestures, fun conversations, and positive energy made for the best birthday celebration I've had in a long time, and I cannot help feeling immense gratitude. 

How do you like to spend your birthday? Do you prefer to treat it like any other day, or do you like to have a fuss made of you? Do you compare yourself to others, or do you feel positive about your achievements thus far? I'd love to hear about it!

As always, thank you so much for reading. See you next time 


  1. Happy belated birthday and congratulations on reaching another milestone! Sounds like you had a wonderful time ^__^

    1. Thank you so much! ^_^ It was a really positive birthday <3