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Tuesday, 16 October 2018

How I Spent My Birthday In Newcastle

I turned the big ol' 25 last week and I'm not mad about it. I used be absolutely petrified of getting older, thinking that my life would deteriorate, that my face would just fall to pieces and that I'd be knocking on death's door by the time I hit 25 because that's a quarter of a century years old. In fact, I've discovered the opposite. There are such negative connotations to growing older but actually, I've become steadily happier with my life as I've got older. Now, I know that 25 is hardly old and I'm actually still very young but when I was in my very early 20s, 25 seemed like so far away and suddenly here I am, closer to 30 than I am 20 and I'm completely fine with that. Yes you do have more responsibilities as you get older but you absolutely could not pay me to go back to being a teenager or even a 20 year old. There's so much to say on this subject so I'll just crack on with how I spent my 25th birthday in Newcastle before I get sidetracked and start rambling on about my life mottos and discoveries - there are more important things to talk about...like dog cafes! 

As some of you may know, I moved to York earlier this year so headed back up to the north of the north to celebrate my birthday and I'm not going to lie, it was definitely Dog and Scone that made me want to spend my birthday in Newcastle. Yep I know what you're thinking: WHAT IS THIS AND WHEN CAN I VISIT? Dog and Scone is a cafe in the centre of Newcastle where you can sit down, drink some tea, eat some cake and of course, snuggle some doggos and puppers. The cafe is garden themed with a quiet, chilled atmosphere to make the dogs comfortable and I can confirm that it is absolute heaven.

A miniature dacshund named Noodle, the floofiest little pom named Sugar, the little long-haired chihuahua named Shadow...these are just a few of the cafe's resident dogs and they are the cutest, cuddliest little fluffies ever! I think the look on my face as I'm gazing down at them can only be described as a mother looking at her child (although I don't think I'd ever look at a human child as lovingly as that). 

You do need to book to visit so as not to overwhelm the dogs and you can do so on the Dog and Scone website. You pay a little deposit and then pay the rest when you get your bill on the day and I think in total our bill came to around £18 for both of us, including the deposit, entry, two drinks and a scone and a sandwich between us which I don't think is bad when this place is like stepping into heaven. 

Back in September, Pizza Punks very kindly invited me along to their opening evening but I couldn't make it as I was in Marrakech so Andy and I went along on my birthday to try out their well-loved pizzas. I'd seen their pizzas plastered all over my Instagram feed so I couldn't wait to give them a try - you really can't beat a build your own pizza restaurant can you? As you can see, the interior is absolutely bloody amazing and I honestly want my house to look exactly like this. The neon, the exposed pipes, the vintage style seating - it's everything you could want from a laid-back, good old stuff-your-face-with-no-one-judging-you style restaurant. 

As for the food, well the photos speak for themselves. We tried the "freakshakes" which were just as delicious as they looked (and obviously provided ample Insta photo opportunities) and the sides were great too. We opted for the chicken wings with a blue cheese dip (which I will have on an IV straight into my body please) and cheesy garlic bread and they were both gorgeous. The pizza menu is something else too with toppings that I couldn't even dreamt of as an option. You choose your base, your cheese, your sauce and then your toppings and what a choice it is. There's the bog standard pizza toppings, such as pepperoni, ham, pineapple (nom), veggies and chicken but then there's the not so bog standard toppings including mac 'n' cheese, beef brisket, black pudding, candied bacon and more. I didn't try any of these weird and wonderful toppings but I'll bet they're surprisingly delicious! 

The service was great as well with really chatty staff who talked to us about the toppings and gave us some tips about what to have and what they would recommend so I'm so glad that we managed to get along and try it out! 

We finished off the day with a visit to Disney on Ice: Dream Big and I was so excited! I was always under the impression that I'd never been but my parents are adamant I went when I was really little but as I can't remember a thing about it, we'll pretend I'd never been. The Disney on Ice show was princess themed and focused on the heroes and villains with them and it was incredible. I think a lot of people have the misconception that it's aimed solely at children which just isn't true. Yes it is a family event and yes the audience does have a small child majority, but anyone of any age can enjoy it because of how brilliant the effects, the dancing and the production is. It reminded me a lot of the productions you see in Orlando in Disney World and the mini shows they put on, with a real air of magic and fantastic atmosphere. 

The ice skating in the show was absolutely breathtaking, with classic Disney songs playing, fantastic effects including fire, fireworks, lighting and lots more and of course, within no time even my boyfriend (who not five minutes before was saying "I don't know how much I'll like this mind") was singing along to Frozen. I was actually pleasantly surprised at the prices of the merch that was on sale too. Don't get me wrong, you could still easily spend a small fortune but I'd say that the things to buy were roughly the same price as what you'd expect to pay in the Disney shop, whereas I was expecting to pay a lot more than this. 

I'd definitely recommend it for anyone who's a fan of Disney and even if you're not, you'd probably have a great time due to how well the show is produced and the sheer brilliance of the skating - it's not to be missed! 

Overall I had a fantastic birthday and this was only one day of it - the other two days were spent out with my friends or with my family (my mum always does a traditional Liddell birthday buffet at home!). Would you go and do any of these activities?

Amy x


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