My New Tattoo: Story In Photos

May 1 was my birthday, and I celebrated the way any mature, responsible, 45-year-old woman might: I decided to get a new tattoo while on vacation in Prague. And then I sweet-talked Dave into joining me. Here are the snaps from the day we got matching star tattoos to celebrate aging as loudly and inappropriately as possible.


Once upon a time…

We chose Tribo, based on recommendations from Reddit. The shop was booked, but when Dave mentioned it was my birthday, the artist Lukas volunteered to come in early to mark us up, which is how we ended up getting tattooed at the thoroughly un-rock-and-roll time of 10:00 a.m.


It’s in a more residential neighborhood of Prague than the tourist center, surrounded by buildings that look like this:


Inside, in addition to sparkling clean tattoo and piercing studio there’s a shop with Dickies clothing; cool handmade journals; tough-guy (and girl) jewelry; piercing doodads; and tattoo-inspired art and rock posters.



We had a look around, then met Lukas, our artist. The first step was the outline. I got mine on the inside of my left wrist, right by the tail of my panther.


This is me, happily anticipating my new tattoo. This is after the euphoria of the outline, but before the discomfort of the tattoo needle.


It’s been 12 years since my last tattoo, and I forgot how annoying and pinchy it is. Here’s where I remembered…


Especially when it was time to fill in the outline…


I spent most of the time scrunching up my face in pain, but Dave caught me laughing, too.


Almost done…


So close now…


Mission “Birthday Tattoo” Complete!

Then it was Dave’s turn. He got his star on his right wrist, so when we hold hands, our stars touch and activate our super powers.


He, too, had forgotten the special kind of discomfort that goes along with getting a tattoo. I lovingly captured the moment.


But soon he was done, too!



Then we went to Café Louvre for elevensies — eggs, ham, cheese, bread, coffee, and cake (!) — because who doesn’t need second breakfast after being voluntarily stabbed with a needle?!



The end.

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  • Tamara says:

    Love the comment “I lovingly captured the moment.” The expression on his face says it all. hahahaha I keep trying to talk my hubby into getting a tattoo with me also. They look great!

  • Tina says:

    Love it! Happy Birthday from the Skook!

  • Trisha says:

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE Prague. My husband & I took our kids in the winter & bought hot mulled wine at every street corner! We also ate entirely too many of these tubular pastries they made in the city center. I still don’t know what they were called tho…
    Congrats on your birthday tattoo. 🙂

  • Melissa says:

    Happy birthday! There is no way that is your age!

  • Amy Ayers says:

    I LOVE your reasoning behind getting the stars on opposite arms. So sweet. 🙂

  • Susan says:

    Happy Birthday! I love that you got stars that activate your super powers when they touch!!

  • Romanesque says:

    “He got his star on his right wrist, so when we hold hands, our stars touch and activate our super powers.”

    Love this SO much.

  • Ms jane says:

    Brilliant. Makes me feel good about turning 47 on Sunday and getting a Ganesha tatt on my back! Happy Birthday Mel x

  • mel says:

    you are a friggin adorable, gorgeous 45 year old!!

  • dane says:

    there is no freaking way you’re 45. you look 32. jeez.

  • Happy BIrthday, Mel!! Congrats! I would have never guessed 45–always thought 36 or so!!

    Looks like you are enjoying Prague! Tell Dave HELLO!!

  • Amy in Austin says:

    I love everything about this post. Thanks for the smile and have a great time on the rest of your great adventure!

  • marsha says:

    Hey, I turned 45 on May 2nd-but no tatoo or romatic vacation for me-looks like you are having a blast!

  • Tina says:

    The super hero powers cracked me up! I love tattoos and can’t wait to have some extra money so I can get myself a tattooed charm bracelet. I’ve wanted one forever, as well as to add a star for my kiddo, right next to the one for my hubby.

    I think I might have to add “Visit Prague” to my bucket list!

  • Kay says:

    45?? YOU LOOK AMAZING. Regardless, it sounds like you had such a great time! Happy late birthday!

  • Kelly says:

    Forty-five, shmorty-five. You are gorgeous! Happy Birthday to you!!! And thanks, as always, for the best recipes around. 🙂

  • Ehsa says:

    Love the pictures, love the super hero stars! Looks like Prague totally agrees with you — your smile is great! Happy Birthday! (I made salmon a l’Afrique du nord for dins last night, as I do every Tuesday … just fab. Thank you so much for the Well Fed recipes. Can’t wait for Well Fed 2)!

  • Andrea says:

    What a GREAT GREAT idea! I would love to do this with my fiance before our wedding, but it would be his first tattoo and convincing him of this cool idea would take some work. Probably much more work then getting him to go paleo… but I like a challenge!

  • Skyy says:

    Adorable post and I so am not a tattoo person! “…our stars touch and activate our super powers” Ha!

  • Kelly R says:

    My favorite part of the pics are your hands. I can tell that you can lift some heavy shit with those calluses!


  • Leslie says:

    I found your blog after googling “Grilled Butternut Squash”. I am trying your recipe tomorrow but was looking through the rest of your site and found this post.

    Two things stood out for me.

    1. My birthday is May 14th.

    2. My boyfriend and I have star tattoos on our wrists that touch when we hold hands.


    lovely tattoos, guys 🙂 And thanks for all the fish the recipe.

  • Leslie says:

    umm.. damnit… “all the fish” was supposed to be struck-out 😐

  • LadyM says:

    You are too adorable! What a fabulous way to mark the happy happy occasion. I used to live in Prague and found it entirely easy to avoid the bread–even at Cafe Louvre–because every damn piece of bread in that country is stale. In Hungary? No. In Czecho, yes. I realized then this is why my Czech grandmother still dunks every piece of bread she eats in her coffee.

    Anyway, congrats! Love the blog.

  • Mara says:

    Love this! Been thinking of getting a new tat myself-something to honor my kids and being a mother-but super cool too!

  • Donna says:

    I got my first tattoo at age 40, second at age 50, and third at age 55. Like you said, celebrate aging as inappropriately as possible. I can relate!

    Happy birthday. I’d love to hear if the matching of stars really fires up the super powers.

  • Katie Erdman says:

    Loving this post right now