I had  a very busy start of the year mainly focused on schools, assessments, school choice, stress, decision, and repeat in some cases. I declined an offer from a school for Maya, then changed my mind, asked to get it back, only to have to decline it again later. Somehow I am still not 100% convinced I made the right choice but at some point you have to close the deal and move on. After taking a pause from blogging I am back with more content and a clearer vision of the direction I want to take with my blog.

To mark this relaunch, I decided to start with a post about my birthday in late July. This year was an important birthday for me with lots of introspection, soul searching and gratitude. I used to hate getting older for vanity reasons. But I now look at birthdays as a blessing. Many people do not get to celebrate their birthdays.

I am grateful to be alive and in good health.

I am grateful for two beautiful children, a great husband, my loving parents, sister and niece who are all equally healthy.

I am grateful for friends who helped me when I was down and who tell me the truth even when it is hard and I do not want to hear it.

Now, the fun part! My husband whisked me away to NYC for my birthday weekend and we had the most amazing time. We stayed at The Dominick Hotel in Soho, which we feel we can visit again now that it is no longer affiliated to the Trump Organization (do I really need to explain?). My mother in law came from France to babysit the girls and we left on Friday afternoon. We landed in NYC around 8pm and after a crazy ride in a yellow cab (more like CRAZY!), we got to our hotel. After checking in, we immediately went out to dinner and got a table at Aquagrill just before the kitchen closed! Is there anything more decadent than a seafood platter and a bottle of white wine right off the plane?! The oysters were fresh and delicious and we splurged on dessert! I have been to this restaurant many times over the last decade and I still love it as much. The food never disappoints and although the decor is not the most glamorous it is still a firm favorite in DABS books.

The next morning, to mark my actual birthday, I did a fun photoshoot with the super talented Upasana Mainali. I have already posted a lot of those pictures on my Instagram but keep an eye out for more!

The afternoon was spent shopping after a yummy brunch at Balthazar. Despite my motivation to make the most of every single second, I had to take a nap at some point because the jet lag hit me hard later in the day. To celebrate my birthday, we had dinner at Buddhakan. Remember that place? That’s the restaurant where Carrie and Big had their rehearsal dinner in the first SATC movie (you have to know your classics!). Coming down the gorgeous set of stairs was quite the experience. We had the Dim Sum platter as a starter and they were amazing. Lots of different tastes and unexpected combination of flavours. However the rest of the food was a bit bland in my opinion. We had a light strawberries dessert to share and I got to blow my birthday candle (tradition matters!).

The next day we had brunch near Central Park at Jams NYC with our good friends M&F. Beautiful setting, large table, comfortable bench seats, great location but nothing to write home about when it comes to the food. My burger was overcooked and so was my friend’s bacon. However, Mr X had the smoked tofu scramble and loved it so a mixed review overall.

The highlight of the day was that I got to meet my six month old godson who is the most adorable little man. His older sister and Maya are the same age and seem to be equally strong willed so I expect a lot of fireworks when they get to see other again!

After spending some time together in the Park, we said goodbye and headed uptown to walk around and enjoy more of the City. Later, it was time to get back to the hotel, pick up our luggage and head back to the airport.

It was an amazing trip and I could not have wished for a better birthday.

Thank you to Mr X for organising this fabulous getaway.

Pictures of me courtesy of Upasana Mainali Photography.


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