In advance I’d like to say this is in no way a boastful post and I hope it doesn’t come across like that. I thought I’d share my birthday experiences because it might help you find gifts for a loved one or even if you just want a looksie to see what other people get!
Hello again Crohnies!
I hope you all are doing well and are having a great summer! I’ve been muddling on through some more health problems with crazy cortisol levels going up and down constantly alongside waiting on my MRIs of my small bowel and pelvis so we can get my next surgery sorted but I’ve also had an amazing summer so far despite not feeling the best. I’ve had some amazing days out with Stuart, so many family dinners, getting to see my baby niece or nephew at their 20 week scan and getting to spend time with my niece when she’s not jet setting across the Atlantic!
I feel so incredibly lucky to have such an amazing bunch of friends and family alongside my incredible boyfriend, Stuart, who make sure the time I can spend doing things that make me feel better instead of being home in bed is amazing!
I turned 25 on Sunday the 29th and I have to say I’ve found it incredibly hard to look forward to my birthday for the last few years. My 22nd birthday was the last one I got to spend with my brother as it was only 3 weeks before he passed away so it’s the last celebration he got to attend. Anyone who has heard about my brother Duncan knows that we were so close and I spent the first 22 years of my life following him around like his shadow so I find it so hard to look forward to any events where his presence is so greatly missed. I have found myself using my birthday only to mark the passing of time since I got to physically be with Duncan and I know every one of my friends and family have known that too and have really done so much to make sure I could enjoy my birthday again. It was still hard on the day itself but I didn’t cry and that’s the first time I’ve not cried on my birthday since I turned 20 as Duncan was diagnosed with cancer over my 21st and was nearing the end of his life at my 22nd so I am becoming more in control of my emotions now. The grief never gets any better or goes away at all but I’m finding it easier to talk about him and the memories I have of him without getting upset but sometimes I still can’t help but get tears in my eyes when I talk about how much I miss him. It might be a bittersweet thing for me to celebrate my birthday now as I miss Duncan so so much but I’m trying to celebrate that there’s another year gone by where I’ve managed to keep my body going despite all the things going on with my health and that really is a good thing to think about and I’m really thankful that I am around to see my 25th birthday.
This year I was treated to some amazing experiences alongside beautiful gifts so I thought I’d share what I was up to because they were so different to what I usually do and they were so creative in comparison to the usual days or nights out I have and some of them might interest some of you!
VIP Experience at Cineworld
I am so lucky to be so close to both my sisters in law and we love to spend time together hanging out and I decided to take them to this for both their birthdays and my sissy Angela decided to do the same for me! Basically what’s involved is you arrive 45 minutes before your movie starts and you head for the VIP floor where you get treated to an all you can eat buffet with everything from soups to salads to pizza and pasta to desserts! You also have unlimited soft or hot drinks too that you can take as and when you’d like to and thats pretty fabulous when you’re like me and get dehydrated super easy!
Once you finish eating your dinner, you can get ready to head into your screening and on the way you can pick up popcorn, hotdogs or nachos with all the fixings and again they are all you can eat too. When you arrive in your theatre every seat is equipped with a swivelling table for all your copious amounts of food and drinks and the seat itself is a huge recliner so you can lounge your way through the movie in luxury! It is currently £30 per person and it is available in Glasgow Renfrew Street and Sheffield. If you want to learn more you can click HERE for information, film times and the current films playing.
Vine and Canvas – Canvas Painting Class
Vine and Canvas is a wonderful little spot located right next to Glasgow Central Station where you get to have a painting class on a picture of your choosing (the picture varies day by day and you can see the calendar for a list of what’s going on each day!) and you paint along Bob Ross style while enjoying 3ish glasses of wine and at the end your canvas will have dried and you get to take it home. It’s also BYOB if you fancy something else alcoholic! My sissy Caroline took me to this and it honestly was something I thought would just be a laugh and I’d end up with one ugly zebra because I’m about as talented as a plank of wood in the painting department but it was so easy to follow along and the lady taking the class was so helpful and lovely that it turned out amazingly! If you want to learn more about these classes or what pictures will be coming up, you can click HERE!
A full day in Edinburgh arranged by Stuart!
I really was completely surprised and overwhelmed that Stuart wanted to take me on a really special birthday date in Edinburgh and it was easily the best day this year! We got the train through after breakfast in a little cafe/deli where we then hopped onto a bus to the Zoo for a day full of looking at our favourite animals like the pandas, meerkats, koalas and penguins!
After the zoo we went and did some shopping which was wonderful and I picked up some bits and pieces you’ll see later on and we then headed for a surprise dinner at The Dome! It’s the most beautiful restaurant I’ve ever been in and I adored the selection of food! We were given the best seat in the house and we couldn’t get enough of the beautiful decor. It really was so magical and we both couldn’t rate it highly enough!
The final stop of our night was a little bit of a walk away from Princes Street and was called The Last Word Saloon. Stuart had checked out what it was like and chose the most me bar of all time. There were candles everywhere giving a romantic atmosphere and we were sitting in the most comfortable high back leather seats drinking vodka cranberries and this weird concoction of beer and bourbon that Stuart absolutely adored! We stayed in Edinburgh until we caught the last train home and went to bed and even now a few days later I can’t believe that I have such a loving and thoughtful boyfriend who made the day so perfect and who thought about absolutely everything to make it as easy for me as possible with my lack of stamina and wound pain!
And now we’re onto the bit you’re all waiting for… the gifts I was given!
An Apple Watch Series 2 in Rose Gold
I was extremely lucky to have been given an Apple Watch by my parents which is so beautiful! I love that it’s so customisable and I’ve not stopped playing with it since I got it. I got this watch as a way to track what movement I’m doing and my heart rate to use alongside my food tracking app on my phone so I know exactly what affects me and when it’s time to rest! I love that I can mix beautiful design with amazing functionality in a way that helps me monitor my health and make me feel much more comfortable going out in public because if I am alone for any reason I have medical ID up to date on it and I know when to take a break!
A Red Raspberry Yankee Candle
This one’s pretty obvious, I just love Yankee Candles and it matches in with my bedroom too so that’s a major plus! The smell is very summery, it reminds me of the end of summer when you’re enjoying the last of the fruit that is in season before the jam making begins with any leftover berries!
A River Island Bag and Purse
I absolutely adore this design! It is definitely more of a statement bag and I want to wear it when I’m dressed up but honestly I would use this every day and I will end up doing that but it’ll be getting minimal use until the end of August as it matches perfectly with our outfits for a family wedding in Ireland! I have to say the quality of River Island bags/purses is amazing and in my experience are the best on the high street for being durable and long lasting! I’ve had 3 bags from River Island for at least 7/8 years and they’re still only showing minor wear even after using one as a school bag for an entire year. I also love how this set stands out so much, I am definitely someone who loves a statement piece be it shoes or a bag and I feel this set will really pull together a lot of outfits!
A Set if Hello Kitty Pyjamas and Bunny Slippers
I am a huuuuuuge fan of Pjs and with all the leaks and stuff I have, I refuse to spend a ridiculous amount of money on them, especially when there are all the possible designs I could want from Primark! They also wash better than any other brands I’ve tried (which are a lot) as they don’t tend to stain unless I eat something ridiculously red like raspberry sauce from the ice cream van and they hold their colour really well too and don’t fade like a lot of other heavily patterned pjs I’ve bought elsewhere have.
A Selection of Clothing from Primark
I had been given money to treat myself to some clothes so I picked out a few pieces in Primark (I’ve also got a H&M order on its way to me too!) which led me to finding this lovely checked skirt with black taping down the sides that’s a bodycon fit but it is really stretchy so I find it accommodates my ostomy bag really well and I think this is a great transition piece to take me from summer to autumn but I have a plan for an outfit to wear at night while on holiday next month in Tenerife and I’m hoping it doesn’t make me look too much like I’m already desperate for it to be autumn!
I also got two tops, a yellow Winnie the Pooh tee because I love anything Disney as you can probably tell from my other posts and the second tee is an oversized black striped fit with 2 little bedazzled (is that the right term?) bees! I finally got some socks that are baby pink and have little French bulldogs on them because they’re adorable!
A Selection of Gifts That Looked Adorable Together
A Daisy by Marc Jacobs Perfume Gift Set with Body Lotion and Body Wash
This gift box is absolutely gorgeous! I’ve been trying to find a new perfume to use every day and being given this as a gift has meant I have the perfect scent that isn’t my daily scent of DKNY Be Delicious Night that I wear every day! It honesty is such a thoughtful gift and it will certainly get a lot of use!
The Happiness Gift Set by Lush
What a gorgeous, summery box this is! It is perfect for a summer birthday like mine and it consists of stuff that smells delicious and is just what you want when it’s hot and sticky outside and you want a cool bubble bath! Inside the gift box is the Brightside Bubble Bar which lasts me between 6 and 8 baths as I just break off a bit of it then crumble it under running water and the Avobath bomb which leaves your skin silky soft and super hydrating!
A Cath Kidston Otter Travel Cup
I’m very new to drinking coffee (I need the caffeine majorly as I spend my nights writing until 4am!) and I also am hoping to decrease the amount of single use packaging I go through because I create so much waste from medical supplies and ostomy supplies and I feel really guilty about it so this travel mug is the perfect gift. I’m so excited to have such a beautiful mug that I will get lots of use out of when I go back to uni as I’ve been working from home for the past 8 months and I’m definitely not used to the early starts so I think coffee will be my best friend!
A Little Baby Penguin Called Sam
Stuart treated me to this adorable souvenir from Edinburgh Zoo as a little reminder of our day! Penguins are some of my favourite animals and we spent so much time with them on our day out that it was only fitting that a little one came home with us. I decided to call him Sam after the Netflix show Atypical’s main character who has a passion for penguins!
A Selection of Sweets and Treats!
I think it’s safe to say these are the best part of having a birthday because everyone loves sweets! I’ve definitely stuffed myself with more sweets and cakes than I can cope with so I’m going to make sure these last me for a long time haha!
This is pretty much everything I got for my birthday apart from the gifts of money I was given by my family and my H&M order but if you want to see what I got when it arrives then you can find me on Instagram by searching for @CrohnieClothing where I’ll be trying everything out.
Thank you so much to everyone who wished me happy birthday and to my friends and family who were lovely enough to give me presents, I’m so grateful for you all!
I’ll be back soon with another blog post so be sure to keep an eye out. Thank you for reading,