It has been eight days since I last graced the internet with my thoughts. In those eight days, and I’ll admit now that it isn’t really a valid excuse for my absence because I have had plenty of opportunities to sit down and write, I have celebrated two very special birthdays.
The first, on the 17th of June, was exactly one year since I started #CAKE. One whole year! I can’t believe how quickly that time has gone. So much has changed. In life, yes, but even just within the confinements of this web space. I was hesitant when I began. What would I write? Who would even care enough to read my content? It was originally supposed to focus on cakes, cupcakes, and other baked goods. Little did I know how much that would change. Apparently I just have far too much to say. No surprises there. It’s a cake blog. It’s a savoury cooking blog. I’m a restaurant reviewer, a travel writer, and an all-round babbler. And I love it. It has given me real purpose outside my working life.
It hasn’t all been smooth sailing though. Oh no no no. I’m sure other bloggers will relate to me when I say that there are some evenings when I get home from a long day at work, and all I want to do is have a bath and go to bed, and the last thing I feel like doing is writing a blog post. Especially if, like myself, you are a morning person. Mornings are my most productive time. But it all feels worth it when you watch your views grow or when someone likes or comments. It’s a great feeling.
I think the hardest period of the year was when I decided to commit to “The Twelve Bakes of Christmas” with no preparation other that a vague plan in my head. I’ll warn you now – if you ever consider embarking upon anything similar, then PLAN AHEAD. I stupidly didn’t. On the plus side – I did learn a very valuable lesson, but with an overly hectic work schedule, and low funds due to a particularly large family and therefore far too many presents to buy, I ended up having an emotional meltdown! At 24 years old, I actually had to jump in the car and go to my mum’s house to calm down. There she was, my ever reliable support unit, waiting on the doorstep for me with a mug of freshly-brewed Earl Grey tea in one hand, and a small shot of whiskey in the other. I followed her to her kitchen, where I consumed both fluids with equal enjoyment, pulled myself together, and proceeded to help her prep for her company Christmas party. I had put far too much pressure on myself. So much so that I barely had time to even enjoy the run up to Christmas. One of my two favourite times of year. Which brings me to the other one.
My birthday. The two days after #CAKE’s birthday was MY birthday! The fact that I decided to start a blog two days before my birthday last year makes me think that I must have been in a birthday-infused cloud of spontaneity. Stranger things have happened. This year I turned a quarter of a century. The big 2-5, if you will. And to celebrate? I was treated to a mouth-watering feast at French bistro, La Serre. It rocked my culinary socks off. I had heard great things about the place, and it was everything I had hoped for and more. The food was impeccable. I made a conscious decision not to blog the evening, because I wanted to relax and really enjoy the meal, which I can confirm is exactly what happened. I’ll definitely be back to blog it in the future though! Without a shadow of a doubt.
The second part to the birthday weekend was an indoor British picnic-style summer party (a.k.a Harry’s Silver Jubilee). It’s too hot to do anything outside at this time of year, and I’m slightly over the whole brunching thing at the moment, so this seemed like the perfect plan. A bottomless vessel of Pimms, freshly-baked anchovy breadsticks, cucumber sandwiches, pork pies, bite-sized scones oozing with jam and cream, Union Jack bunting, far too many balloons, an entirely British playlist, and 30 of my favourite people. It was one of my favourite birthday celebrations to date! And the best part? I woke up in the morning and ate a scotch egg for breakfast. Ok maybe that wasn’t THE best part, but it certainly polished off a truly marvellous weekend.
So here’s to another year ahead, jam-packed with new experiences, adventures, and more. Happy birthday me, and happy birthday #CAKE. Over and out, amigos.