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Double Celebration, Part 2

2 Jul

Mother Nature was good to us, for it didn’t rain on the big double celebration day. It was cloudy and did threaten to rain a little, but the hot weather held for us to have the outdoor barbecue as planned.

There was a constant stream of deliveries that morning. From my usual online shopping items to dessert cakes, more cakes and pastries, and the ultimate cake towards the evening, we were busy receiving all the deliveries. The fridge was almost bursting with all the delectable goodies, on top of all the barbecue food.

All sorts of mouth-watering yummies!
The funniest 4-inch tall birthday cake!
Our private garden birthday party
A colorful spread

It was a lovely garden dinner affair for the three of us. The birds left us alone, unlike our last barbecue for our Reunion Dinner. Even the mosquitoes did not disturb us. As our little one turned 20 that day, I guess we have to face the fact she is not so little anymore. Happy birthday M2, and many happy returns! Love you to the moon and back.

Double Celebration

29 Jun

Now that M2 is back safely at home with us, we plan to have a double celebration party with a garden barbecue tomorrow. Firstly, to mark her return and secondly, to celebrate her birthday, which falls on Wednesday.

However, the skies and weather have other ideas to thwart our plans. It has been raining a lot, unusual during this time of the year. Even today, it rained this morning and looking very gloomy. And there is a forty percent chance of rain tomorrow as well.

How are we going to have a garden party with such unaccommodating weather? We’ll have to cross our fingers and hope Mother Nature will be kind for a lovely double celebration.

A Quiet Celebration, Part 2

30 Apr

I thought it would be a quiet celebration to mark my birthday this year, having to stay put and all. But I was wrong! Hubby treated me to an early birthday dinner; then there was that golf game and luncheon with all the golf buddies.

The best part was the unexpected delivery. The girls surprised me with a dairy-free cake, or rather six slices of different flavors. Delivered a day early, they planned with hubby without my knowledge. A lovely but unexpected surprise indeed that made the birthday all the more special despite the circumstances.

A Quiet Celebration

27 Apr

Another year older, another year wiser, so the saying goes. This year, the birthday celebration is very different. Both of us are homebound, like 2020, unable to travel anywhere beyond our state border for a birthday getaway celebration. I supposed it’s okay. Better to be safe given the current pandemic that we are facing.

I have lost count of the number of CMCO extensions. And despite several extensions to curb the spread, positive cases are on the uptrend. Very worrying, so it is better to stay put.

The only thing different this year compared to last year’s birthday celebration is the MCO status. Last year, we were under MCO lockdown and had dinner ordered online and delivered. M2 was back then too.

This year M2 is not back yet, and M1 is still in the US, and we are under the CMCO phase, which allows dining in at restaurants. So hubby took me to dinner last night but not today itself. Today will be a round of golf with friends followed by a one-meter-apart-seating luncheon that I anticipate will be a boisterous occasion. So much for a quiet celebration!

I reflect on my life and am thankful for what I have and what I have achieved. The most important thing is I am healthy–save for my occasional Endometriosis issue–and able to do the things I love and be with friends I enjoy. A different celebration is, nonetheless, a happy birthday celebration!

A lovely Japanese dinner to celebrate my birthday!

A Virtual Celebration

19 Jan

A memory feed popped up on Facebook this morning: M1 turns 18 today, and we celebrated. That was six years ago. Today she turns 24! Dang, time sure flies.

Wasn’t it just yesterday she turned one, and we had friends and family over for a party? Then the next thing I know, we were at her graduation commencement in the Summer of 2019. That was the last time the whole family was together. She is currently pursuing her Master’s degree.

With both girls pursuing their education in two different countries, it certainly is hard to have a birthday celebration. Add in the three different time zones that we are all in, a virtual get together is the only way – either a FaceTime or WhatsApp group call for this occasion.

Happy Birthday, M1! Stay safe.

Being Thankful

27 Apr

2020 will forever be etched in stone as the year everyone looked forward to but now wants to forget – for the first half of the year that is. The Covid-19 pandemic has swept across the globe and has caused lives to be upended, events cancelled, routines disrupted and birthday celebrations postponed. Some people even want to reset the year, get a refund for the months lost and such.

For me, I can’t decide what I want but for sure, it’s the first time in my life I’m celebrating a quiet birthday at home, not outside or away. With the MCO in place, there’s no restaurant to go to nor a destination to visit for a getaway celebration.

It’s okay because…

I’m thankful for being healthy;
I’m thankful for my loved ones who are keeping safe;
I’m thankful for my friends who are keeping me sane;
I’m thankful for my hobbies and discoveries that are keeping me occupied, and
I’m thankful for technology for us to stay connected to be closer while staying apart.

Looking Back at 2019

31 Dec

Well well… it looks like another year has gone by again. Time to file the memories away to recall later fondly and another set of annual resolutions to make. Or break. But the end of 2019 is much more than another year gone by, it’s the end of a decade!

Looking back, I’ve had my fair share of good memories and heartaches with many things happening in the year. After all, there’s 365 days. What stood out most for me can be summed up to these.

Both girls are all grown up, with one having graduated and continuing on with grad school in the US and the other just starting college in Ireland. Proud parent moments. Then there’s me reaching the milestone big five birthday. Happy me occasion.

My carving hobby resulted in a mixed growth in Gigglesville’s population this year. There were only 13 new Citizens to reach 194 (I couldn’t push myself to reach 200), the Whales grew to 48, with 30 new ones while the Gnomes had only two new giant ones to make three dozen as of 2019. It could be better.

But with this carving activity, there was a price to pay: my aggravated injuries. My golf game suffered as a consequence and for the first time, I find myself not giving the sport any priority anymore. I lost the will to excel when injuries persisted. Hopefully this mindset can change to a more positive one come 2020.

Besides the sports injury, my endometriosis pain was well, a pain to deal with this year. More acute than ever, I was at the mercy of a monthly recurrence, it was dreadful. So I started the 16/8 intermittent fasting diet to manage the painful backache and cramp attacks. With a controlled diet and a list of food to avoid, losing a fair bit of weight along the way was a booster and motivation too besides minimizing the agony. It helped.

Not everything was rosy and good though. My iPad Mini has been wonky and unreliable with each passing day, my MacBook Air had to be resuscitated but nothing compared to losing our beloved English bulldog, Rooney aka official pet number one to old age and sickness. It was the saddest day of our lives and suddenly, the house was emptier than ever and our lives changed.

Looking back, if I were to put 2019 into perspective of a phrase, ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’ aptly summarizes the year for me. Now as I ponder what to expect for the new year and new decade, I hope it will be one that focuses on ‘the good, the better and the best’. No resolutions needed though.

To everyone, here’s wishing you an awesome 2020 ahead, Happy New Year and Goodbye 2019!

In Memory of…

11 Nov

Today would have been official pet number one’s 12th birthday. Sniffle…

It’s been a month since Rooney’s passing. How time flies! There are days when we get home, I find myself looking out for him expecting a patch of fur lying at the garden terrace when I open the front door. But he’s not there….

We have been keeping busy so that we don’t think too much of the loss. The house has been rather quiet sans the barking or the act of talking to a pet who was literally our third child, our baby. To overcome this, I find myself playing music more often than ever on my iPhone XR. Sometimes I would up the volume on Spotify’s choices for me or simply blast my Music’s playlist so that it’s not so quiet. Sigh…

Happy birthday Roo, you’re in a better place but always in our thoughts and hearts.

Celebrating Us

21 Oct

When ten women gather for a down-memory-lane-high-school reunion, you’d be assured of it being a boisterous one, almost bringing the roof down. Staying at a resort owned by another school friend (from the primary school years) and a surprise 11th hour turn-up of another flying in to join us on the third night, it made the four-day bonding even more special and the celebration memorable.

Throw in good food, lots of alcohol, some shopping, silly card games, a commemorative tee-shirt, girlie chatters, an impromptu cooking session (which we enjoyed the end result tremendously after toiling over the stove) and of course the endless squeals and laughter, the gathering will be remembered for a long time. Even the weather was beautiful throughout our stay as it only rained on the island after we left.

All of us attended Methodist Girls’ School in Klang together since we were seven years’ old (Standard One) until we were 17 (Form Five). During that phase in our lives, some joined in later but it didn’t matter. That’s how we met and forged a friendship that lasted so many decades.

As time passed, some left for different schools or countries, others pursued different paths in education, careers and lives. Despite the distance but thanks to technology though, everyone reconnected. That’s what being friends is all about… remembering each other to keep in touch and stay connected.

This 2019 as we all reach the big five birthday milestone, we reflect back our times together with this trip, which was planned basically to celebrate our birthdays and to cherish our friendship throughout the decades. Through thick and thin, friends we have remained.

Celebrating Us is about us. Happy Birthday Gals!

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BFFs

Bonding Time

18 Oct

Girlfriends are the best. They will be there for you in times of need and no questions asked. So you know you can always rely on them.

My high school girlfriends and I have been friends since the longest time I can remember. After all, we are all dinosaurs. It is for this reason that we planned this trip to celebrate our friendship and our significant milestone birthdays this year.

Although a bigger group would have been better, the fact that ten of us made it is truly wonderful. What is even more wonderful is that we are staying at La Pari-Pari resort, owned and operated by one of our classmate of the earlier school years.

La Pari-Pari

Our room

The laughter, besides the drinks and food, is what makes our friendship so treasured, indeed a good bonding time which started yesterday and will last until Sunday.

Seafood lunch

Dinner spread

A toast by the early arrivals