Thursday, 7 January 2016

Where did the last 18 years go?

Greetings! I hope everyone has settled back into their normal routine again after the delights of Christmas and New Year. I have to admit to giving a huge sigh of relief when all the decorations were safely back in the loft, although I do keep discovering more pine needles - they seem to get everywhere!
Sunday saw us braving the weather and driving into London for E's birthday treat. My baby was 18 on Monday - yes, 18!!! I can scarcely believe it; where has the time gone? It only seems like 5 minutes ago that I went into labour a week early and we were desperately going down our list of friends, trying to find someone who was at home, not ill and not still away after New Year celebrations to look after L. At one point it looked like she might have to come with us! Fortunately, all worked out in the end and my baby girl arrived safely in hospital. She was absolutely beautiful, the image of her big sister .... and suddenly, when I wasn't looking, here we are with A levels and uni on the horizon!
Anyway, maudlin aside, the birthday girl had decided that she would like a nice fountain pen for her present. She uses one normally, but it is just a cheap one and it was decided that a better one would make a great present and something to keep (barring accidents or loss) for a lifetime. Hence, our first port of call was here:
The nice man in the 'writing room' (!) was incredibly patient as E deliberated at length over which one to choose. Eventually she narrowed it down to 2 and, after R pointed out that our car was probably about to be clamped, we suddenly had a winner. All I can say is thank goodness for the January sales! It is, however, beautiful, is a perfect keepsake and E is thrilled with it.
Next on the agenda was a trip to the ballet. Early January isn't the best time for theatre trips - lots of places are still in Pantomime mode, so E had decided on this at The Coliseum:
The Nutcracker, along with Peter and the Wolf, was one of the first pieces of music that the girls really listened to, so it seemed appropriate somehow and we really enjoyed it. The Coliseum itself was lovely too.

Finally, we nipped over to Piccadilly and had afternoon tea here:
Sorry, it was a bit dark by this time! Here are a few photos of the inside:
I couldn't resist taking one of the Powder Room!
The Christmas decorations were still out in force:
 A harpist actually played Happy Birthday as a special birthday cake was brought in - E was pleased and embarrassed in equal measure!
A few shots of the tea - we battled manfully through all the sandwiches and cake but, eventually, had to admit defeat and R furtively pocketed some of the scones to fetch home for the chickens! They were greatly appreciated!
Anyway, that was our weekend. Term has now started again and I think an early bit of spring cleaning may be in order - well, someone has got to shift those pine needles!
Toodle Pip for now. x


  1. Happy 18th Birthday to E and what a lovely way to spend her birthday. I am sure the fountain pen will be much treasured and The Nutcracker long remembered. Your afternoon tea looks delicious too. Good luck with the Spring cleaning, definitely not my favourite job! xx

  2. what wonderful sounding celebrations! I got a fountain pen for my 18th (not from Harrods......) and I still use it xxx

  3. That's not a bad way to spend your weekend or your 18th! When I started my secondary school, my Dad gave me a Parker ink pen. I still have it, but use it rarely. I should.
    Leanne xx

  4. What a perfectly splendid way to spend your daughter's birthday! I too have a cartridge pen that dates back very many years, and I still use it. Great gift choice!

  5. Happy birthday to E! What a lovely way to spend her birthday together. I can't wait until I can do things like this with my daughter when she's a bit older. A pen is a wonderful gift. I gave my younger brother a good pen when he was about that age. Hope you are having a good week.

  6. It's lovely that E will enjoy her new fountain pen. Beautiful handwriting is a joy to read. Her birthday treat sounds like heaven, especially the ballet. Tea at the Ritz is something to remember too. They do grow up surprisingly quickly, don't they?
    Cathy x

  7. What a lovely way to celebrate an 18th Birthday! I hope the pen is treasured for many years to come along with the memories of the ballet and afternoon tea (which looks magnificent.)

  8. Happy Birthday to your daughter! What a wonderful way to spend the day and to celebrate!! So glad that it was fun for you all. That is quite a powder room isn't it! xx

  9. Happy Birthday to E, and what a wonderful celebratory trip. A fountain pen is such a lovely gift. And tea at the Ritz, wow! I dream of tea at the Ritz, it looks absolutely stunning there. One day... CJ xx

  10. Happy Birthday to E. What a fun day to celebrate. A day to remember.

  11. Happy Birthday E! What a wonderful way to spend your 18th. Yes I can relate to where did the time go with my youngest soon to be 28! Crikey I can't possibly be old enough :)

  12. Ahhh....happy birthday to E! Time certainly does fly where kids are concerned. The pen, ballet and ever sooooo posh afternoon tea will be something she remembers. I need to do an urgent spring clean

  13. What a wonderful way to celebrate a special day. I'm sure she will always treasure that pen :) Barbara x

  14. Happy birthday to your daughter! What a wonderful celebration she had and she will always treasure her beautiful fountain pen.
    Marianne x