6. Host friends for a grown up dinner party

20161119_195309Winner, winner, chicken (curry) dinner!

It has taken me a while to tick this item off my 27 List, after setting the goal in 2014, but last month I finally took the opportunity to make it happen. I chose a date, put out a Facebook invite to my netball mates and luckily some were free.

I cook dinner for friends quite often, and have done so many times in between 2014 and now but for this to feature on my goal list I decided it had to be planned, at a table and at least two courses.

I made three courses in the end, one main and two desserts! Desserts is always the easy part for me and as it was around Thanks Giving time I made two American desserts, Banoffee Pie which is possible my second favourite dessert (Pavlova is always first) and homemade peanut butter cups. I didn’t manage to take a pic of these, but they were so sweet and delicious.

I’m most proud of the curry I made for dinner though. It’s a recipe from Rick Stein’s India Cookbook. My friend bought this for me for Christmas one year when we were planning an epic trip to India* and it is one of my most used cookbooks. This is saying something because as you know, my baking books get a fair bit of use.

I made butter chicken with rice, naan and coriander, there was supposed to be beans too, but I forgot them. It got a thumbs up all round and filled us so completely we struggled to get a buzz on to go out dancing afterwards.


20161119_210425Of course though, enough gin and prosecco will get you there eventually. We danced all night at Monarch in Camden. Saturday nights is ‘Songs from the movies’ themed so we were in our cheesy element.


20161120_012110^^^ dancing to the Frozen anthem.. Let it go… Let it go…………………… !

Was a great night, thanks for joining me girls xx

*Note: We never went to India, it’s still on the travel wishlist… maybe one day.


2. Watch the entire series of Sex and the City

_MG_0028I went one better, not only have I watched the entire series these past two months, I have also watched both movies and read all the behind the scenes trivia on IMDB. Apparently Sarah Jessica Parker, who plays Carrie, and Kim Cattrall, who plays Samantha, despised each other right from the first series. Who would have known?? I thought Carrie and Samantha were besties! Mind = blown.

I got quite attached to the ladies over the 94 episodes. Over 50 hours of TV, that I watched pretty much every evening I was home and some mornings, and well, well into the wee hours of the night often. I binge watched hard, and I loved every moment.

Sex and the City originally aired from 1998 – 2004, so I could have watched this as I grew up like most of me peers did. I would have been 17 when it finished and 21 when the first movie come out. I wonder what I would have made of it as my younger self, I’m sure I would have been so taken in by the glamorous lifestyles of the characters. But for what ever reason, most likely there was something Dad wanted to watch on another channel, I never saw it.

_MG_0034Yes, its super cheesy and so far removed from real life. It’s painfully 90’s in the beginning, too. There is an early episode where the girls all having lunch, as they often do, when Samantha brings up dildos. The other three are intrigued about this, which was endearingly quaint for me watching this nearly 20 years after it first aired. Brazilians, Botox and boob jobs are also covered off by Samantha as the series progresses, met with varying degrees of surprise by the other three, but would not raise an eyebrow with the viewers of today.

I found it sweet (Charlotte’s earnest hunt for The One), annoying (How many times will Carrie let Big hurt her?), unexpectedly topical (Miranda trying to prove herself in the ‘boys club’ law firm – she would totally be a feminist if written today), and hilarious (Samantha, always Samantha, the sushi dinner, the humpy dog, the condom incident in Abu Dhabi). I was chatting with a friend about Sex and the City the other day and she asked, ” So, which character are you most like?” and I came to the conclusion, as cliché as it sounds, that we’re all a little bit like all of them. Which is probably why I found the show unexpectedly relateable, considering my life comes no where near the glamour and drama that they experience evereyday.

The characters may be relatable, but their world is certainly not. Along the same lines as Desperate Housewives and Gossip Girl, Sex and the City portrays a life that could only exist on TV. Endless lunches and bar openings, ball gowns and pick up lines. It makes New York seem like an adult equivalent of Disney World, Big even takes Carrie through Central Park on a horse and carriage at one point. It’s an escape into a fantast world, and a fantasy wardrobe. Watching this series has sparked so many great conversations with friends and workmates. Whenever I am asked “What have you been up to lately?” I respond with something like “Watching Sex and the City! I’m addicted! I’m up to the part when……..” and we go from there. Usually ending up with ” OMG! I want all Carrie’s clothes… sigh… If only….”.

Finally though, and I am surprised to say, I’m going to get deep here. The part that really resonated with me was their friendships and in the end, ability to stay true to themselves. After the final credits rolled I was so moved I messaged my two best friends in New Zealand and set up a Skype date – thanks for being there ladies, miss you always.

The series ends, as it always does, with Carrie saying something ‘profound’. I say profound very loosely here as Carrie’s profound is usually something very flip like “Are we all just playing games?” or “Denial: Friend or Foe?” or my personal favourite “Are men just women with balls?” But with this statement she’s on to something.

“The most exciting challenging and significant relationship of all, is the one you have with yourself” – Carrie’s parting words in the final episode.

So, that was my surprisingly long review. I hope it inspires you to watch again, or like me, give it a go for the first time. Putting this on the list was an easy win for me, I knew I wanted to watch it, I knew it would be easy viewing and I knew I had a lot of free nights ahead of me to binge watch. I did not realise though how much I would gain through watching this show. What did you think of Carrie? Are you a fan of Sex and the City? Team Big or Team Aiden?


I’m Team Aiden….