November 28, 2014



In the past, I've always spent a lot of time thinking about my birthday, what I wanted to do, who I was going to invite over etc. But after about 2011 that died down for a variety of reasons. This year I didn't really want anything over the top, I just wanted to have dinner with my family and Paul's. Unfortunately, life (and work) get in the way and sometimes the way you imagine things just cannot be.

So my plans changed. I guess it was life's way of welcoming me into a world where I wasn't a teenager.

I woke up early yesterday, with a sore back and I desperate need for a shower after working the previous night. I was so fatigued (I cannot even explain to you how I'm feeling today after the push of feeding 1400 people last night) but I wanted to get up early to enjoy my day fully. Ideally I would have fitted in a run, some meditation and a gym session, but I just didn't feel like it.

I sat down, watched Ferris Bueller's Day Off (because I thought that would be a good movie to wish my youth goodbye to), painted my nails and edited some photos before going to lunch with Paul's Mum, Susan and his brother, Simon.

We went to Tulip, a place Paul and I have been wanting to go to for a while. We enjoyed a really nice meal for a couple of hours. Time wasn't rushing me like it normally does, and that was really nice. Afterwards, I saw my parents for coffee and they gifted me with some beautiful earrings.

The afternoon passed by in a blur. We got home, I washed and dried the clothes we needed to wear for work while Paul was helping his Mum and brother finish off my birthday cake. We sat down for dinner and cake at 6pm and we needed to leave by 6:15pm.

The rest of the evening was a flurry of plating up food, handing plates to waitresses, washing an endless supply of bane trays, burning myself and getting more bruises on my arms and legs.


Smoked trout croquette with almond cream / Ox tongue pastrami, pickled walnuts and celery.


Jamon Serrano – cured Spanish leg ham. 


Salad of tomatoes, dried anchovy, burratta and samphire.


  • Grilled asparagus with Gruy√®re, fermented garlic and vegetable compost /  Salad of steamed kale, pancetta, hazelnuts and egg vinaigrette / Half roast chicken with curried carrots, sour cream and tahini / Fried potatoes with sriracha.

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(Ailis cat)

These are a few things I've learned over the past year of my life:
  1. Don't spend time focusing on your flaws/things you don't like about yourself. Spend time trying to better yourself.
  2. Sometimes a person's gratitude is not a good enough reason to do something.
  3. You have to take risks to do anything interesting in life.
  4. Exercise, eating well and meditation are the keys to coping with mental illness.
  5. Stop dwelling on the past. It's happened, you can't change anything.
  6. Nostalgia is good in small doses and horrible when it is a perpetual state of mind.
  7. Feminism is extremely important, but there are issues that men face which also need to be addressed.
  8. Studying online is lonely, but if you make an effort you can connect with some amazing people.
  9. No matter how many times you ring up for a competition to win Katy Perry tickets, you're probably never going to get through.
  10. People who are honest, supporting and good listeners are the best kinds of people.
  11. How many likes, followers or friends we have online doesn't measure a person's worth or their talent.


  1. It looks like you had a very busy birthday, I hope it was a nice one! I just entered my 20th year this summer as well. It's been an interesting ride thus far. Love your insight at the end of the post, and all the food looks delicious!!

  2. That looks like a great dinner-- and that is such a fantastic list! Happy happy birthday :)

  3. Happy Birthday Carolyn!

    I don't eat meat but I have to say this food looks delicious!
    I really appreciated your life lessons so far, very wise, especially the one about Katy Perry tickets :P


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