Lillie and Charlotte turn 21 in October. Thomas was given a car for his joint 18th/21st birthday. This was a perfect present for him, because it gave him the independence he desperately wanted. The girls’ 18th birthday presents were wonderful but I wanted to give them something super special for their 21st which was very individual to each of them. Sometimes twins get a raw deal on their birthdays because they have to share it with another person. This time I was determined to come up with something that each girls would really LOVE and that were really personal to them.
I always knew what I would get Charlotte (you’ll have to wait until her actual birthday to find out what that is), but Lillie was a little trickier…
Lillie had been asking for a tattoo for years. Gary really doesn’t like tattoos, so out of respect for him she had decided not to get one until she moved out. I knew that a tattoo would be the absolute best thing that we could give her…well, that would be apart from going and getting matching tattoos with her!
Gary and I talked about it. I don’t love tattoos, but I do love my daughter so very very much. I thought that going with her and the two of us getting the same tattoo that she had drawn would be so incredibly special. Again, Gary wasn’t keen, but he also knew it would be the bestest birthday present we could give her.
We were right. When we told her she was so overwhelmed she had tears in her eyes. Oh boy, was she excited! She got a start right away on researching the best tattoo artist and sketching out ideas for the tattoo. We both agreed on something small and meaningful. Perhaps our birth flowers? Or a continuous line drawing of something…a sort of hark back to the first art course I ever taught her. In the end we went with a lily flower (her name sake) with a little bee.
Lil found a tattoo artist who specialised in continuous line drawings and she ran an all female organisation. So they corresponded and decided on a date and a design, which Lillie herself drew.
The date was today!
Here are some photos. The tattoo was a little bigger than we first had planned because as a continuous line you need the size to get the detail. I did this for Lillie. I would never ever ever had done this of my own accord…but I have to say, I’m surprised by just how much I love them! I think it was made all the more special because we had them together and spent the day together.
It was a very very special mummy-daughter day which neither of us will forget for as long as we live ❤️
We got up at 8 and headed out for breakfast (although we actually only had a latte), before catching the train to London Bridge. We walked first to Lil’s university to pick up her ID badge and then stopped at the nearby Pret A Manger for lunch. We then walked the 15 minutes to the Tattoo place. She was super, super excited:
As for me, I was starting to feel a little sick!
She, Charlotte and Ads had discussed and decided I should go first as I was the most likely one to bolt! I did not bolt (I knew I wouldn’t because I was doing this for Lillie not for me. I may have had second thoughts if I was just going in alone). The tattoo place was in such a lovely area and was under a railway bridge. I’ve tried to capture that in the photo below. Each tunnel under the bridge had been developed into a coffee shop, a music shop and the tattoo shop (I’m not sure what tattoo places are called. Tattoo parlour sounds so dodgy…so I shan’t call it that!!). It took about thirty to forty minutes each. It didn’t hurt at all – literally I felt the first prick and after that almost fell asleep! Then it was Lillie’s turn. I’d had mine done on the back of my shoulder (just in case I didn’t like it – I didn’t want to be faced with it every morning!), but Lillie had hers done on the inside of her forearm:
We were both so happy with them! I mean, Lillie was always going to love hers but I was surprised how much I love mine. They are a bit bigger than we first thought they would be but because they are simple line drawings they don’t seem too big, if that makes sense?
This was such a special way to celebrate Lillie turning 21 – one of our favourite days spent together, making memories which will last at least as long as the tattoos!