Wednesday, February 10, 2016

IAN'S 40TH SURPRISE!

Dear gorgeous person, you! 

I know you're probably already aware from my endless posts on Instagram and Facebook that E turned 40 just over a week ago. Thanks to my slight camera obsession, we ended up with over 400 pictures. You only turn 40 once so I really wanted to make his birthday very special and capture every moment. I started planning these multiple surprises from around October last year. It's very hard trying to surprise someone you live with and practically do everything with but thankfully, I pulled them all off without him finding out much until the last minute. My Facebook friends have not seen these yet - think how special you are :) x


SURPRISE 1: PROUD CABARET

As part of E's first surprise, I invited his brother Grant and his wife Hannah (both of whom you know from my 'What I did at Christmas' blog) and E's sister Kay and her husband Wes to a cabaret night. Proud was amazing!!!! The burlesque was fantastic and very tasteful - oh and of course the girls were extremely sexy too. Forget the performers, the waitresses.... the waitresses - literally wearing nothing so if that's your thing (who doesn't love that haha), then you must go!! No really, it was beautiful, bubbly atmosphere and I felt it was the perfect way to kick off E's 40th. We went for their platinum package which included a glamour kit (hats, braces, gloves etc), champagne, shots and a 3 course meal. After the show, the stage turned into a dance floor with a live DJ. See how we quickly turn from glamorous to sweaty and not giving a damn, as the pics progress haha!



SURPRISE 2: THE PEAK DISTRICT 

For E's second surprise, I invited his best mates from his university (Cambridge - yes, not just a handsome face haha, I'm so proud of him for this). They all live far away and have gorgeous partners and children and in the three years that E and I have been together, we've never had such a get-together with all the kids and adults in one place for a whole weekend. It felt so special and I really was humbled by them all - the adults and their long standing friendships, the kids and their different levels of understanding and sheer intelligence for their ages. I feel so lucky to have them all in my life.

We found this amazing house called Benty Grange, through Peak Venues and it really was just what we needed. So much space for 11 adults and 7 children. The kitchen was nice and huge. All 7 bedrooms had inbuilt en-suites - pretty spacious too. For our party, it was just perfect, very clean and all practically new amenities too.



THE CAKE

If you've watched my 'Where have I been?' video, you'd know that E is a big fan of Star Wars. So for his cake, I really had to make an effort. The hardest thing was not knowing which of the Star Wars characters to choose. I found Angela Ostler on Facebook and as soon as we emailed, I just knew she was the one for the job. I wanted a cake that would blow E's mind and Angela did just that with this R2D2 piece. It didn't just look the part, it also tasted beyond amazing. Having colour inside the cake was such a big deal for me as I do not like a boring looking cake. Angela made the bottom tier red velvet (my fav) and R2D2 himself - vanilla with different shades of blue (click here to see the pic). I do feel terrible that we didn't take as many pictures of what the cake looked like inside. I guess the whole weekend was breath-taking and just emotional. 



On Saturday morning, we did a lovely two hour walk in the sun (well, until it became very windy and cold at the end). It was lovely to be out in the open and most of the kids loved it. 


After the walk, we were all desperate for warmth so off we went to have lunch at at the local pub The Royal Oak - the food was absolutely amazing! There was so much on the menu and the servings were beyond generous. I could totally see why the trip advisor reviews were so good! I mean, it was so good, we went back there on Sunday. Staff were so lovely and flexible, considering we were a big party. They welcomed us and accommodated all our needs.


On Saturday night, we also planned a surprise toga party for E - a very cheesy one - apparently they had lots of toga parties at uni. It was lovely to see the kids all dressed up. We all loved it. Although we sent the kids to bed early and the adults had a lovely time. We ordered some Chinese food and reminisced over old photos. E's friends actually brought their massive photo albums with them. There were so many pics from the 90s I had never seen before. E doesn't take pictures so I've only been told stories. It was lovely to see the much younger E and all I could think of was I would have still been all over him like a rash (pretty much as I am now lol) if I met him at uni. His hair was long, silky and black and he just looked like a right mixed French and Italian stud. 


Sunday was pretty chilled - well for some. Tim, Pat and I went for a 7km run in the freezing, raining cold. It was gruesome but I loved it. See our progress pics herehere and here. We had a lovely lunch at the pub in the afternoon after Nishika and Claudia decided to act out a play for us. I literally want to adopt these two. They're so cute and beyond intelligent.


All I can say is I hope someone loves me this much when I'm 40 so they can plan something so special and thoughtful. E was very pleased and bless him, he never expects things or makes demands around birthdays or just in general. He is so loved by everyone who knows him and I'm just so happy to have been able to share such a big milestone in his life.

Love him to bits! Happy 40th my baby! Looking forward to spending many more milestones with you!

J
xo xo

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