While I hate celebrating my own birthday, I absolutely love organising celebrations for other people’s. This works well with my mum, as she very much enjoys her birthday and the partying that comes with it.
Over the past few years I have completely taken the reins from my dad when it comes to organising mum’s birthday, however this year I do have to share the credit with my cousin Amy who came up with the idea of surprising my mum by turning up unannounced on the Saturday morning before heading off for a spa. The surprise kicked the day off perfectly, and set the mood for what proved to be a very enjoyable weekend.
After the post-breakfast surprise, mum, Amy and I headed to Celtic Manor for a spa day complete with afternoon tea and facials. Celtic Manor was already a family favourite for a relaxing night away or even a Christmas break, however we had never before experienced what the Forum Spa has to offer. Aside from the facials which were beautifully relaxing, the smell of chai throughout the spa and the abundance of Elemis products made it a near-perfect way to spend a Saturday. Of course, we couldn’t leave without a couple of bags of Elemis goodies to send us on our way.
The afternoon tea was a nice little feature of the spa package. The bento-box presentation of the food and the cutely arranged hors d’oeuvres looked even more appealing when accompanied with a flute or two of champagne for each of us.
Leaving Celtic Manor suitably refreshed, next stop was Mint & Mustard in Penarth for 11 taster courses of various Indian dishes, my favourite of which was the Banjara Lamb. The restaurant being only a stone’s throw away from my flat gave us the ideal amount of time for prepping with some tunes and champagne.
11 courses is a lot of food, even when they’re only taster size – but when it’s that delicious, you make your way through. That said, it was very much a team effort. With each course comes the accompanying wines, some of which were not our usual choice but it’s always nice to try something new!
Every good Saturday night should be followed by Sunday brunch to reminisce…and cure the hangover somewhat. Although the coffee didn’t quite blow away all of the cobwebs, the opening of cards and presents luckily didn’t require too much strenuous activity, so mum just about managed!