Turning 27 has been playing on my mind. It’s not a ‘big’ birthday and I’m sure as hell not celebrating any of the milstones I’d have expected at 27 when dreaming about my future as a young child. But it’s just another step away from the nostalgia of my teens and towards thirty, loaded with all the pressures and expectations of growing up.
I started writing my first incarnation of this blog when I was 20 and in those seven years, it’s documented a whole load of my ups and downs. The first piece you’ll find on this website (can you blame me for culling those ‘what’s in my makeup bag’ posts?) talks about how much I struggled to fit in at university and while I’m very much still that same scared girl, in the last year I’ve gained a much stronger understanding of how I cope with different situations.
This blog has documented heartbreak, moving jobs, losing jobs and loneliness when I took off to backpack solo without fully preparing myself for the reality of what that meant. It’s also documented the very best of times: how I discovered the healing power of travel and new friends after one of the toughest times in my life, the incredibly beautiful places I’ve seen and mouth-watering meals I’ve eaten.
While it scares me to think of the amount of really personal information out there on the internet about me, there’s something quite surreal about being able to peek through a window into the past and see exactly what I was thinking at different times in my life – even if it does make me cringe in horror more often than not.
At the start of 2018, I wrote a blog post full of goals but in all honestly, I had no idea where I wanted to be in twelve months time. Somehow though, I’ve managed to end up feeling pretty good, from CBT and rounds of stressful job interviews to a rented flat with one of my best friends and a job that I really enjoy. And that gives me a really lovely sense of contentment so while my friends and I have been discussing anxiety, houses and pensions when we’d have once gossiped about the latest drama in our weekend jobs, I’m kind of okay with the fact our friendship has managed to evolve with the times.
We’ve come all the way from sticky nights in the Krazyhouse when it was still a novelty to dance in a club until 4am and your mouth would ache from the sugary sweetness of the £2 special offer on the bar. Now, it’s all about cosy nights in with allll the snacks, songs that make you smile when they kick in and a cheeky tipple on the side now that I don’t have to drive home every time.
This month, ILoveGin.com helped us out on one of our cosy evenings by sending me one of their subscription boxes to try out. I used to enjoy beauty boxes back in the day when those ‘What’s in my Glossybox’ posts used to get you tons of blog hits but I’d never crossed paths with any other lifestyle subscription until now. But, as gin is pretty much the only alcohol I can drink for actual enjoyment, I thought it would be the perfect accompaniment to a chilled night in.
The box contains two miniature gins (one of which is violet flavoured this month!) and two tonic waters, alongside a cute booklet that features a recipe of how to pair the gins and some information about the flavours. As it’s the festive season, I got straight in there by pairing Pin Gin with a Blood Orange and Cinnamon Tonic; topped with a cinnamon stick, it was a delicious treat to enjoy in front of the Christmas tree.
Quite honestly, an episode of Queer Eye in the background (‘You Can’t Fix Ugly’ obviously) and that delicious gin is the stuff my 27 year old dreams are made of. Sound like the stuff of your dreams too? The ILoveGin.com subscription is just £14 per month and includes a £5 off voucher if you love any of the gins enough to purchase the full size. There’s just something so exciting about opening a delivery where the contents are a total surprise.
In a less pleasant surprise, news of Love Island’s Jack and Dani split has just thrown me completely off my train of thought so it’s time to wrap up. But it turns out that turning 27 didn’t set off the age-induced panic I predicted. In fact, I’m hoping that my toasts (yes…all of them) to a successful 365 days will be fruitful. It’s only a few months until I’m off on a two week trip to one of my dream destinations so I can’t wait to take you along with me.
Now, all that’s left to do before 2018 draws to a close is load up on mince pies, pour myself another drink and line up the Christmas films. Who’s up for it?
How do you feel about getting older? Panicked or thrilled to be leaving those insecure younger years behind?
P.S. I was sent the gin subscription box to try out but all words, oversharing and love of gin are my own.