a birthday baby

After the best grad week ever, the fun didn’t stop at the beginning of this week cause I was turning the big 2-1. I’ll be honest, I was a bit dubious about how good my birthday was going to be because all plans had to be put on hold after Dom’s accident and I was also expecting to be on a massive Exeter comedown. However, when I awoke to the news that K-Middz was in labour, I knew it was going to be a GOOD DAY.

After I’d leapt joyously out of bed and spent a while shouting about how I always knew it was going to be born on my birthday (I am not even joking), I was shepherded downstairs to the living room where I found this awaiting me.

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Too exciting! My sister said she’d been up since 7am blowing up balloons and nearly passed out as a result, so big thanks to Milly. The amazing cookie bouquet was a find of my mum’s from Claire at Fairy Dust Kreations. I have since sampled and can confirm that they are delish, so thanks also to Claire!

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Cookies admired, present opening commenced immediately. My parents had been VERY reluctant for me to offer any suggestions as to what I wanted for my birthday and had even turned me down when I tentatively asked, a few weeks ago, if they wanted any sort of list or anything. I had spent a while convinced that I wasn’t getting anything at all for my 21st, but clearly I needn’t have worried. They had it all sorted! I began with this adorable inspiring wooden block (for want of a better word) which is going to take pride of place in my room next year:

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Next up was a small, very exciting box. Inside it I found this:

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The gorgeous Daniel Wellington watch I have been lusting after for months! Mum had clearly done a good job on sleuthing the old blog and I totally love it – it’sΒ veryΒ me and you can buy different straps for it for not that much (relatively).

After that surprise, I thought that would be it for my “big” present – until I was instructed to open the final box. I opened a nondescript cardboard box to discover some very familiar Selfridges wrapping…and inside…this!

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I cannot even tell you how long I have been wanting a Marc Jacobs bag. I have mentioned my obsession before I believe, but seriously. When I was about 15 or 16 I once saved up enough to buy one (this was when the pound/dollar rate was seriously good and we had a family holiday to California), and when it came down to it I couldn’t actually bring myself to spend that much, but now I finally finally have my hands on one! I was too excited to take a really good picture, but it’s a little messenger bag that I absolutely ADORE. I could not have been more surprised and pleased so THANK YOU mum & dad for the best presents ever!

However, the surprises were not over. While I was in the shower mum mysteriously vanished. When eventually she reappeared, she called me through into the living room to reveal THIS beauty:

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Isn’t it incredible?! It is inspired by my Disney namesake, Belle, who was my absolute idol as a child, and came from the wonderful Sara, who is a local cake goddess.

The rest of my day was pretty chilled. Mum had got all my favourite Waitrose deli items in, so Dom and I created the world’s best mezze board for lunch.

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Later that evening, Dom declared that he was feeling up to going out to dinner. We struggled a bit to find somewhere ’cause it was a Monday and most places weren’t open, but eventually I stumbled upon the website of The Waterfront in Market Harborough, which is right on the canal and has great waterside views. We got ourselves a table outside and settled down, feeling just like we were on holiday.

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By this point, I was getting seriously worried that Kate wasn’t going to have her baby in time. However, we had just sat down when my dad announced it had been born! I was SO excited and started yelling loudly all over the restaurant – luckily the table behind were just as happy and I overheard them ordering a celebratory couple of glasses of Prosecco. So a HUGE congratulations is in order to Will & Kate and also a massive thank you to them – I think a baby prince is the best birthday present I could ever have imagined!

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Foodwise, I went for the duck and orange mousse to start. I liked the orange marmalade-y stuff and the pancetta, but have to say that the mousse itself was a little bit disappointing: I ate about half and just got a bit bored. Plus, there were huge peppercorns in it which I had to pick out. To be fair though I ordered it as an experiment and I am always a bit fussy about texture so I think it was more a poor choice on my part than a bad dish for the restaurant!

I have to apologise for this awful picture – I have no idea what I was doing but somehow cut off half the plate. Bad blogger here!

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For my main course I had lamb, which came with boulangerie potatoes and minted greens, in a port jus. It doesn’t look too appetising, but trust me it was delicious!

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It was so nice to have Dom out with us. There was a little boy on the table opposite that was fascinated by his halo but other than that, we were basically left to ourselves. Plus, one of the waiters looked EXACTLY like Tom Daley which is always a plus. The dessert menu looked fab, but we had birthday cake to head home to so we called it a night at that. I can highly recommend The Waterfront and will definitely try and return this summer!

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Overall, my birthday turned out to be a brilliant day. After the rush of grad week it was nice to get a little relaxing in while being completely spoilt at the same time. Congrats once again to Will & Kate (I’m sure they’re reading) and thank you thank you to everyone who helped make it such a lovely day!

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