I turned 26 last week and I’m not entirely sure how that happened.

One minute I’m having birthday parties in my great-aunt’s social club where so many people are singing the ‘I’m Blue’ song by Eiffel 65 over and over again on karaoke that the DJ is asking that we stop requesting it, the next I’m sat in a posh sushi restaurant discussing jobs and houses.

HOW did that happen?!

For realsies though, this birthday was a weird one for me. Normally I’m a huge fan of birthdays and I will quite happily string out the celebrations to the point where it’s almost 2 weeks later and I’m still using ‘but it’s my birthday!!!!’ as an excuse.

But this one – this one felt different.

I didn’t really want to celebrate it, I didn’t want as much fussing over as usual, and I felt a whole host of emotions throughout the day that I’ve never really felt before towards a birthday.

Is this me getting old? Is this me realising that I can’t be a birthday princess every year?! Hmm. I’m not sure I like the sound of that.

Anyway – while the overarching theme of the day was a positive one, I still had a few rumbles of the sads.

Love & gratitude

The amount of love I felt for those around me this year was overwhelming.

I think birthdays make you realise again just how awesome everyone is in your life, and this year was no different.

I got absolutely spoilt by my friends and family, but I also got so many lovely gifts and well wishes from my new colleagues – which is awesome, considering I’ve only been there a few months and I’m still a relatively new member of the team.

It made me beam with pride that everyone around me is so bloody brilliant and that they’re my friends. Ugh. YOU’RE ALL SO HECKIN WONDERFUL.

Grief & sadness

Sorry to be a bit of a party pooper – but this birthday hit me a bit hard this year.

In March, it’ll be 10 years since mum passed. I just, for the life of me, cannot fathom how that’s come around so quickly. 10 WHOLE YEARS? That’s craziness.

I remember the day like it was yesterday – and I probably always will – but for some reason with this year being a big ‘milestone’, not having her here for my birthday made me really, really sad.

It made me yearn for a card from both my parents, for a meal with both my parents, and for her to give me a big cuddle and joke with me about how I’m now nearly 30 and how I’m getting on a bit, aren’t I?

Someone at some point told me that this whole grief thing gets easier with time, but in all honesty, I’m not sure it does.

Fear & loneliness

There are times – and they’re almost daily occurrences now – that I get hit with the ‘WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE????’ train.

My birthday was no exception to that rule.

26 is a bit of a milestone; you’re now on the downward towards your 30th, and the years between 25 and 30 are probably where some of the biggest life changes will happen to you and those around you. Engagements, weddings, pregnancies, new houses, new jobs, new careers and new directions.

Because of all that, I’m terrified that life is slipping away from me. I’m seeing some of my dearest friends get married, engaged and probably pregnant within the next couple of years, and in all honesty that scares the living daylights out of me. These kinda things always happened to friends of friends, or ‘adults’ that you knew through work or something. Not us.

I can’t help but feel like I want to put the brakes on time a little bit while I catch up to what everyone else is doing.

I also spoke to my dear nana on the phone yesterday and she said that at 26/27, she was married with two kids.

At 26, I have a cat.

Cool.

Gluttony & guilt

I ate like it was going out of damn fashion on my birthday. And you know what?

I honestly couldn’t have cared less.

I’m trying desperately hard at the moment to lose weight (summer bodies are made in winter!!1111!!!1!11 *eyeroll*) so my daily meals are consisting of porridge, soup, fish, chicken and veg.

It’s all a bit boring, so the moment my birthday rolled around – hooooo BOY. I let loose.

Here’s a quick rundown of what I had throughout the day (please no judgements and sorry to my old personal trainer if you’re reading this):

  • porridge (it started off so well)
  • a Ripple
  • a slice of birthday cake
  • a sausage roll
  • beef pho noodles
  • a Cornish pasty
  • mini eggs
  • a cookie (I might have even have had two, who knows – I was in some sort of sugary haze by this point which is what I imagine living in Katy Perry’s brain is like)
  • mini Terry’s Chocolate Orange segments
  • giant chocolate buttons
  • a banana (look at me trying to justify everything I’ve eaten so far by having that. Cute.)
  • some mango
  • a smoked salmon risotto
  • a burger with chunky chips and onion rings
  • two scoops of vanilla ice cream

I’m not even sure that’s a complete list but what I DO know is that I’m not one bit sorry.

While almost every single thing I ate that day is precisely what you shouldn’t be eating and I now have a tribe of spots on my chin to thank for it, I enjoyed every damn second of it. If there’s a day you’re gonna treat yourself, it may as well be your birthday.

And the next day I was straight back on the soups and fresh fruit and veg, so it’s all about balance, right?!?!?!

RIGHT!?!?!?!


Anyway – that’s a little round up of how I felt on my birthday.

I actually had a really lovely day, but it’s safe to say that it was a bit of a rollercoaster. I’ve since picked myself up from being so overwhelmed with everything, I’ve decided to draw a line underneath it all and I’ve started off my 26th year (trying to be) happy and healthy.

So – how do you celebrate your birthdays? Do you feel like this throughout the day or am I a complete alien? 🌚

 

Share:

img_2881

We’ve all been there. Trundling wearily round the shops, searching and searching for that perfect present – one that’ll make your beloved put down their glass of prosecco that’s been surgically attached to their arm on Christmas Day and exhale a ‘wow’ in astonishment.

If you’re friend / boyfriend / girlfriend / parent of a blogger, you’ll know that we lust over stuff a lot. As in, every spare free moment of time we have is spent reading other blogger’s favourites for that month, their new beauty obsession and omg have you seen this new range of Primark homewear because ya gal just gotta have some twinkly stuff around y’know?

So, for those of you who are struggling as to what to get a blogger for Christmas – here’s a little gift guide that might help you out…

PS – this is meant to be a little tongue in cheek..

Something cactus related 

Bloggers go MAD for the little green guys, which is why a trip to your local B&Q or garden centre is a must do over the next couple of weeks.

They’re indestructible (although I once killed a cactus, so they can’t be that easy to look after), and they look pretty cushty in an IKEA pot against a white background.

Or – why don’t you go for something a little bit quirky and get a Plantosaurus from Firebox?

Bits to make a home ‘hygge’

Ah – that buzzword of the last few months.

If you’re not entirely sure what ‘hygge’ is, it’s basically a Danish concept (pronounced ‘hoo-ga’. I know. I think it’s silly too) that is the equivalent of our ‘cosiness’. It’s all about blankets, warmth, hot chocolates, slipper socks, greys / pinks / whites, and just general comfiness.

It’s taken the blog world by storm, so a few things under the Christmas tree, like a nice cushion, a couple of candles, a thick blanket, to make a house feel all nice and cosy will be a perfect idea.

You can always take a leaf out of this book here to read up on all things hygge.

Also – if you’re completely not buying into the ‘marketing concept’ of hygge – this article from the Daily Mash will be right up your street.

LED selfie light

A blogger loves a selfie, and also a selfie Snapchat or two, but what good is it in these dark and dreary winter months if nobody can see our pretty little faces?

Step in – the LED selfie light.

This smart contraption that has everyone from Kim K to my best friend VR raving about them, simply attaches to your phone and acts as a ring light that those profesh models have when in front of a world class photographer.

Obviously, buying this is going to make you look like Kendal Jenner, right..??

Copper kitchenware

All good bloggers have something copper in every room, and the kitchen should be no exception.

I’m personally a little bit over the whole copper thing, but these plates would noooot go a miss in my cupboard.

Marble vinyl paper

Okay. I admit. I bought a roll of this.

Remember sticky back plastic that you used to get in school to cover your workbooks? This is essentially the millenial version of that, where you can cover absolutely anything you want to in that god damn lovely marble finish.

I got this for a table that I want to spruce up (and may or may not want to cover up a mark on the top where I’ve used nail varnish remover), but in all honesty I’m holding off doing it because I don’t want to mess it up and do it wrong and it’ll annoy me forever. Does anyone else get that?

Anyway – if you want to cover every surface imaginable with marble, you can do so here.

Smartphone compatible gloves

It’s *such* a first world problem, but there’s nothing worse than your little didgets getting cold when you have to pull out your smartphone when you’re in outside in the middle of the snow.

Enter, the best invention of the 21st Century – smartphone gloves.

These little badboys will make sure that you can use your smartphone no matter what the weather. Brilliant.

‘Ctrl, Alt; Delete: How I Grew Up Online’

I started reading this book on the 23490823948234 number of trains I had to take when I was over in the UK a couple of weeks ago, and it made me laugh so much that I sometimes did have random outbursts and had to give looks of apologies to the other train riders.

Soz.

If you’re in your mid-twenties and grew up online, this book will resonate with you so much. I’ve only read the first couple of chapters so far, but everything that Emma Gannon has written so far has got me nodding my head and reminiscing in my own memories.

Get it here.

Fake plants

Because every single one of the plants that I have dotted around the living room (save for the cactus that seems to be thriving), is dead.

For the love of god, stop spending money in your local garden centre and just invest in some fake plants. They look the exact same and won’t have you berating yourself every time you look at them.

And, also – they make for a great addition to any Insta flat-lay.


So – there you have it. My guide for what to get a blogger this Christmas.

Is there anything else you’d add to the list? What would you want to get from Santa this year?

 

Share:

christmaspresentgift

Well.

Nice to see you here.

It’s been a while, hasn’t it?

I haven’t posted since.. October 13th. That’s poor, poor show. I do apologise.

Let me tell you what I’ve been up to so you can see why I haven’t had much time to blog:

  • I’ve visited Barcelona, Lisbon, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Northampton and Liverpool (more on all this later)
  • I’ve started (and nearly finished) a 12-week digital marketing course that takes up two nights of my week
  • I’ve finished a job that I was at for just over three years (v emosh)
  • I’ve started a new job which I absolutely love but, as always, learning new stuff makes your brain do a bit of a fart
  • I’ve had to arrange for a new boiler to be installed (OH the joys of being an adult)
  • I’ve bought Adele tickets (SLJDFLSKDJFLKDJSF)
  • I’m planning for Christmas presents and for the 75765675 parties / Christmas do’s / meals / nights out / events that I’ve got planned over the next few weeks

Life is busy. Everyone knows that. We are always so full of ‘oh, sorry I didn’t get in touch – I’ve been too busy!’ excuses, but we all have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyoncé, and somehow she manages to raise a beautiful child, produce an album that NOBODY knew about, go on a world tour AND just be a general goddess.

God knows how she does it.

So – to relaunch my blog, and to get my head into the creative flow again (man, I’ve missed writing), I wanted to stop with the ‘ugh I’d love to get back into it but I’m just too busy!’ mindset, and go through with the idea of doing Blogmas.

Will I have enough time? Probably not. Will I have to sacrifice some stuff to get this done? Probably. But, this is my passion, my outlet, and my little corner of the internet, so I’m gonna give it a go.

I’ve got a post planned for every day throughout December (if you didn’t know what Blogmas was), and I MIGHT even foray into the world of YouTube. Maybe. We’ll see. But for the blog, I’ve planned a mixture of diary-like entries (so a ‘this is what I got up to today’ type thing), the usual listicles, and some longer thought pieces thrown in – just for good measure.

I’m not promising that I’ll be able to get every single post up every single day, but I’ll at least give it a shot – which is, at least, better than those that aren’t doing anything at all… Right?

So, dear readers, this begins our first day of Blogmas. Stick by me, follow me on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, and I’ll (hopefully) be keeping you company all throughout December with some good ol’ fashioned blog posts.

But, for now, I’m off to plan the rest of the month and go have a v large glass of gin.

Share:

Going out for dinner is possibly one of my favourite things to do on this island, as evidenced by my ever expanding waistline and my love of carbs.

Something else that I love just as much is carbs, is the fact that Jersey has some of the best restaurants, chefs, food (shoutout to the fact that we’re surrounded by sea so our fish is suuuuper fresh), and views from restaurant windows that I’ve ever known.

Processed with VSCO with hb2 preset

We’re a bit spoilt for choice here, so when Tennerfest rolls around, it’s the perfect excuse to try out a couple of restaurants that have been on the ‘must-do’ list for a while.

If you’re not from around these parts, you probably have no idea what I mean by Tennerfest. It’s basically where restaurants do a set menu of 2 or 3 courses for either £10, £12.50 or £17.50.

It’s designed so that the pricier restaurants can do a cheaper menu, thus enticing a new audience, but also so that chefs can try out something new on their menu to see how it’d go down.

One of my favourite restaurants to visit during Tennerfest season is Big Verns, in St Ouen’s. It’s a cute lil place on the beach front that’s open for breakfasts, lunches and dinners. At the moment they’re doing three courses for £10, which is outstaaaaanding value.

£10 for three courses of warm, hearty goodness?! Vern, you cray cray.

The starter: garlic bread

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

You can’t really go wrong with this classic, can you?

While it was a simple dish, it was done so, so well. The bread was just crisp enough without you having to go to the dentist the next day to fix a crack in yer tooth, and yet the garlic and butter combo had just enough flavour that you weren’t overpowered and stinking of garlic for the next couple of days.

A big thumbs up from me.

The main course: penne pasta with woodland mushrooms, spinach and Parmesan

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Boy, oh boy. This is gonna be in my thoughts for a good, good while.

Now – I must confess – I actually really, really hate mushrooms. “Why on earth would you order a mushroom pasta then?!” I hear you cry.

That’s because that was the only veggie option for main, which I guess would be my only gripe with the menu. There was only one veggie option per dish, and us veggies eat more than mushrooms and beetroot.

This was, however, rich, creamy and even though it probably isn’t any good for my calorie intake for the day, it tasted pretty damn good. I would expect to be paying around the £10 mark for this meal alone, let alone the whole 3 courses.

The portion size was also super impressive; normally with Tennerfest menus, they scrimp on the portion size so that it doesn’t cost the kitchen a lot per plate, but this was a full sized bowl of carbs.

Another massive thumbs up from me.

The dessert: profiteroles with chocolate sauce

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Uggggghhh. Good lord.

These tasted just as incredible as they looked. They were light, fluffy, just on the right side of being cold (there is nothing worse than a frozen profiterole, I tell ya), and hugely satisfying.

I did come away feeling slightly sick after eating them, but that miiiiiight have been down to the fact that I just ate a whole load of stodge.

Yet another thumbs up!

The other stuff: service / ambience / price

This is where Big Vern’s shines; I always find that the service is really friendly, and also super quick as well. We ordered at 6.30pm, and within an hour, we were ready to leave.

Even though that sounds rushed, we never felt like we were being watched or being brought out the courses too quickly. It all came at the right time, when necessary.

The ambience of the place is great, too. It’s informal, especially as it’s best known for grabbing a quick hot chocolate before the drive home after a long day at the beach, but there were a few people on other tables that were on dates, or had made a bit of an effort with what they were wearing for the occasion.

Overall verdict

Overall – this place gets a solid 8/10 for me. The only things that brought down the score was the fact that the veggie options were quite limited (although this was only on the Tennerfest menu; I could have gone rogue and gone for something on their full menu, but who would do that when you have 3 courses for £10?!), and the fact that you had to go up to the till to pay at the end. That is suuuch a personal preference though, and obviously didn’t affect the quality of my meal.


So, there you have it. My review of Big Verns’ Tennerfest menu.

What do you think?! Do you think it looks good for what you get?!

Share:

This week has been a bit mental. It’s seen the arrival of a new housemate (hi, Bekki!), my first shift at a nightclub (hi, Watersplash!) and the news that I’m starting a 10-week digital marketing course, starting Monday (hi, Digital Jersey!). All that, teamed with a couple of surf lessons and planning out my vegetable patch for next spring – it’s been a busy ol’ week.

Home: Christmas candle

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Don’t you dare tell me it’s too early to get involved in Christmas. I walked into my favourite garden centre last week (where else would you find me), and I was greeted to loads of staff getting all the shelves ready and in place for all the Christmas decs. Even though I was on my own, I still did a little gasp and you can bet your bottom dollar a *IT’S HERE!!!!* squeal came out.

You’re welcome, everyone.

Now it would have been just plain rude to the Christmas gods if I’d have come out of there empty handed, so I put this little bad boy in my basket and off I trotted home, safe in the knowledge that my lounge was soon going to be filled with the sweet, musky scents of Christmas – and this doesn’t disappoint.

This particular one is from Colony, and is in the ‘Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh’ scent. When I told someone at work about my beloved purchase, all I got was a confused look and a ‘but what on earth does gold smell like?!’ I couldn’t quite answer that, and even now I’m still not entirely sure, but if it’s good enough for Baby Jesus to have been given, then it’s damn well good enough to make my lounge smell of it.

It’s sweet, but not sickly, and it’s woody without it smelling like a man’s aftershave. I bought the mahoosive jar, the 545g one to be exact, and apparently it’s got around 150 hours of burn time which means I can light it whenever I want to without feeling guilty that I am literally burning money away.

You can grab a gift set with some other festive smelling flavours, here.

Travel: Liverpool next weekend

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Ah, Liverpool. You old beaut, you.

I’m half scouse, which means that I get all the best parts; I have a penchant for a dead good eyebrow, but I don’t feel the need to wander around Tesco at 4pm on a Saturday afternoon with curlers in my hair and my jammies on (if you know, you know).

So, I’ve booked some flights to go see my paternal motherland to go see my nana, have a good ol’ shopping session around Primark (‘perks’ of living on a tiny lil island in the middle of nowhere is that shopping in mainland high street stores feels special), and stuff myself silly with some hearty home cooked food.

I’m only there for a couple of days, but if you have any recommendations for somewhere we need to go, let ya gal know!

Beauty: OUAI Wave Spray

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I bought into yet another blogger hype – I bought the OUAI Haircare Wave Spray – and after I say what I’m about to say, please don’t go unfollowing me on all forms of social media.

I really don’t like it.

Let me explain why. I have the thickest hair known to man, and every *single* hairdresser I’ve ever gone to has exclaimed ‘aw jeez, you’ve got so much hair!!11!!!’ to me while they’re tugging desperately at all the knots with a tiny comb (like that’s going to do much good – camman man). I’ve even had one hairdresser sigh with exasperation as she’s 30 minutes deep into blow-drying my hair and she’s only done a third of it.

I just don’t think my hair type is suited to this at all, as it makes it even fluffier and frizzier than I want it to be. I know that’s what a wave spray is meant to do – to give volume, bounce and those oh-so-effortless waves – but if I’m honest, I get a better result if I just whack an oil and a heat protective cream in my barnet.

It made my hair incredibly sticky and crisp, to the point where it made it difficult to brush out, and it dried out and knotted my hair like nobody’s business.

It also smelt like an off Chanel perfume.

I mean, there’s every possibility that I’ve got a dud one, but it’s frustrating when I see all these influencers on Instagram using it and looking like they’re on Baywatch and they’ve just came out the sea. But somehow when I use it, I look more like Monica from Friends in the humidity (you know what I mean) than I do Pamela Anderson.

Sorry folks – this one isn’t for me.

Music: Frank Ocean – blond

frankoceanblondalbum

My main man is back! And about bloody time, too.

If you’ve been living under a rock or you’re not entirely sure who Frankie boy is, he was once upon a time part of OFWGKTA (of Tyler The Creator fame). He started bringing out his own, softer stuff, which in all honesty I preferred to all the Odd Future noise.

His voice is like melted chocolate, and it’s so, so soothing to the ears. His previous albums, Nostalgia Ultra and Channel Orange, were released to critical acclaim and were probably one of the best albums of the years they were released.

And, after all that success, we all waited patiently with baited breath for his next release.

And we waited.

And we waited.

There were promises of release dates, with nothing coming to light. We were then treated to a live stream of him doing some carpentry in a workshop, to which nobody had the foggiest as to what it all meant – was it coming?! Finally, were we going to get some new Frank tracks?!??!

And then – it arrived. blond came in like a steam roller and blew all the expectations we all had about him out the water.

I first listened to it during Annie Mac’s album listening party, and a couple of the tracks instantly blew me away (mostly Pink + White and Self Control). It also features a track that’s solely a voicemail from his mum telling him not to do weed or get in car with someone who is drunk. Brilliant.

Go check it out on Spotify or Apple Music – it’s honestly worth a listen.

Life: it’s all a bit hectic

I thought with it coming to the end of summer that everything would start settling down until the Christmas party season came into full swing.

Nope.

I have every weekend planned out until the middle of November, I’ve got blog post ideas coming out of my ears that I want to work on now, I have my whole week planned out by Monday and I’m starting to have to ‘squeeze’ people in as to when I can see them. I’ve just started a new digital marketing course, and I’ve just gained a new housemate.

How is this all happening?! And what do you mean it’s only 100 days until Christmas?!?!?

Jeez. It’s a crazy, exciting and mental time but if you’re feeling the same, I urge you to just say no to stuff sometimes and make some time for yourself every once in a while. There is almost nothing that a face mask, a cup of tea and an episode of Suits can’t fix (anyone else fancy Harvey Spector?).


So – that’s my crazy week! How has yours been? What have you been up to?

Share: