So last week was the run up to my 20th birthday (on Sunday 27th) which I was dreading – turning into an adult and being teased about how I should start using anti-wrinkle cream and that I am now half way to 40! Despite those daunting jokes, I was glad that I had a lot planned.

I decided to treat myself and get my nails done – despite them being so short. I went to Beauty Temple in Nottingham, through recommendation, and had a Jessica GELeration Manicure. I had my nails shaped, cuticles removed, hand massage and then the gel varnish was applied. I decided to go for a deep burgundy colour as for me darker colours suit me better – rather than more girly colours like pinks. I am not one to get beauty treatments done (apart from getting my eyebrows threaded every couple of weeks) so it was nice to sit back and relax – the salon itself was very tranquil with an oriental theme throughout. I was recommended a nail and cuticle treatment by the beauty therapist to makes my nails stronger; Jessica Phenomen Oil (intensive moisturiser) & Jessica Nourish for the Cure which I now apply every night before bed. I can already feel my nails getting stronger and can see a massive improvement of the condition of the skin around my nails.

\  Jessica GELeration manicure & care set.

My birthday celebrations began when my friend Mark from home came to Nottingham to celebrate my birthday with me. We ventured around sunny Nottingham and found some delicious places to eat. Our first stop was Cape Bar in Lace Market – it was a chilled pub with good music and a friendly service. I ordered a chicken wrap with chips and Mark ordered a red onion steak ciabatta with chips. We were both amazed when the barman came over with two serving boards with our delicious lunch on.

Lunch at Cape Bar, Lace Market.

We were very full so decided to take a walk round the beautiful Lace Market, to which I haven’t actually looked around since I came to Nottingham last year.

We then sat in The Old Market Square, having had enough of walking around window shopping, with a Salted Caramel Mocha from Starbucks. It was a taste of Christmas in my mouth – reminded me of being warm and cosy at home watching Christmas films with the Christmas tree in the corner of the living room. It was a familiar feeling you could say.

Salted Caramel Mocha’s from Starbucks – simply bliss!

In the evening we decided to go for a Mexican at Las Iguanas to celebrate my birthday and to do what we both love; EATING! Walking around Nottingham had made room for the amazing dinner we had. Mark ordered chicken fajita and I ordered a chicken burrito. The service was prompt and the decor was outstanding with beautiful twig chandeliers with coloured lanterns dangling down to create a warm environment to eat and chat. It was a lovely evening we had together.

Date night at Las Iguanas.

Saturday was another day filled with new adventures, memories and you guessed it; more food! I had always wanted to go eat at Pitcher & Piano, which I finally had the chance to with Mark. We walked along the cobbled streets in the tranquil part of Nottingham and entered the restaurant which used to be a church. Both blown away by our surroundings, were amazed by the stain glassed windows, high ceilings, glass staircase – it was beautifully converted into a restaurant.

Pitcher & Piano, Lace Market.

Being in an amazing place, I am glad the food lived up to my expectations. We decided to go all out – by ordering starter and mains. Mark ordered crispy jalapenos and I ordered salt & pepper calamari – being a student it is not very often you have the chance to eat amazing fish like calamari so I took the opportunity and it did not disappoint. Then came along our mains – Mark had a jerk chicken wrap with skinny fries and I had the traditional beer battered cod and homemade chunky chips with peas. We were so full we could hardly move! But it was worth every calorie. The past couple of days I had with Mark were amazing, filled with awesome food, lots of memories and of course his great company!

On Sunday, my birthday, I was woken up by my flat mates telling me I needed to get ready because they had something planned for me that day. Little did I know what was to happen! I had just finished getting ready and there was a knock at the door, I opened it not thinking for one minute that it would be my mum and brother Jake standing on the door step. WHAT A SURPRISE! I did not know whether to laugh or cry, I was in so much shock but was over the moon to see them again!

After finally regaining myself I opened presents! I have been truly spoilt this year! My mum gave me some money which I decided to use and got myself a beautiful watch from Larsson & Jennings, a Swedish born company – I fell in love with their watches straight away when I got introduced to the brand by Mark.

Larsson & Jennings; Resurgence in Black and Gold.

Mark took a beautiful photo of my watch.

I then got an amazing jumper with a pug on it (as I am obsessed with pugs) and some new black vans from my brother Jake. My flatmates got me a ‘Pug Mug’ and a lovely 3D spiked necklace, I also got some cool stickers from Mark and t-shirt which is now my new favorite t-shirt. Plus some DVD’s from my mum as a little something to open on my birthday.

I have been spoilt!

More presents!

After opening my lovely presents Mum, Jake and myself went into Nottingham town to grab something to eat. We usually go for Nando’s as it’s always guaranteed you will have a decent meal however, I thought it would be nice to try a restaurant that we hadn’t been or heard of before – Tamatanga; an urban canteen that served delicious curries. We sat down in the canteen-like restaurant and dived into some poppadoms. Myself and Mum ordered chicken karahi with rice & nan-bread and Jake ordered lamb rogan josh with rice & garlic nan-bread. Our curries were so delicious, it didn’t even touch the sides – we ate it that quick!

Myself and my beautiful Mum, Karen.

Urban canteen feel in Tamatanga.

My chicken karahi – DELICIOUS!

We were so full from the delicious curry that we came back to my flat and had a 10 minute lay down – BUT, there was no stop for the wicked, we decided to indulge once again and have a slice of birthday cake. A massive chocolate cake from Marks & Spencers – sublime!

“There’s always room for cake!”

I have had such an amazing long birthday weekend, created so many memories and have loved every single second of it – it just emphasises to me how important some people are in my life and I just want to say “Thank you, you have made it amazing!”. Turning 20 wasn’t so bad after all!

Memories made, it is time to start working hard!

Peace out.

Autumn x