So I had a birthday three days ago. And I took the day off work, despite the fact that I am entitled to so few vacation days here at the new office, because heck, birthdays are worth it even if you're going to spend it at home doing chores.
I did spend a good part of my day doing chores, but I also received hundreds of birthday messages from thoughtful friends, which made me feel very loved, and I managed to carry on my birthday tradition of donating blood.
My 45th whole blood donation at the National Blood Bank. Service was excellent, as usual.
The vegetarian meal set for herbivorous blood donors. The only difference from the non-veg version is that our fried noodles are vegan. Mine has tempeh and tofu in it. Thank you, National Blood Bank!
The lobby area of the National Blood Bank is all prettied up for Christmas.
I went out with 6 of my best friends -- Serina, Shalan, Nicole, Sonu, Karen and Aravind -- for dinner and post-dinner entertainment that night. There was no drinking because Aravind and I had just donated blood and the following day was a workday.
A shallow but happy thought occurred to me on the night of my birthday: December birthdays are the best! When you go out to celebrate, it looks as though all the shops and streets made themselves pretty, sparkly, jingly and festive in your honour!
We (or rather, I) had a pre-dinner cupcake and macarons at Cupcake Chic while waiting for the others to arrive.
The whole centre court of The Curve was transformed into a winter wonderland.
Serina suggested dinner at Johnny Rockets and I agreed. We've been curious about trying the food there for some time.
Serina, Nic and I fell in love with the retro American diner ambience of Johnny Rockets almost immediately. It reminded me of the many roadside diner meals I had in the States.
There was even a little old-timey jukebox playing rock-and-roll numbers.
So good to have my best friends around me for dinner on my birthday.
As you can see, we were pretty enthusiastic about the food. I went for their vegan entree, the aglia olio pasta.
Then, as with Johnny Rocket outlets all over the world, the service staff came out to perform a cute little song-and-dance number.
When the staff came out to perform the second time around, I thought they were going to sing Christmas songs, but nooooo......
It was to sing me the birthday song! Serina and Aravind had informed them that it was my birthday, so they came out bearing a birthday sundae with a candle in it, and a plate with a birthday message written on it in ketchup.
Serina had informed them of the correct way to spell my name but they still got it jumbled up, which amused us no end.
I had a task to complete before I could enjoy my birthday sundae. I had to blow out the candle from about 1 - 1.5 metres away using a straw. I nailed it at the first try. Thank you, Johnny Rockets, for a fun and memorable birthday dinner!
After dinner we walked towards the games arcade through the promenade and shopping mall. Everything looked so pretty and magical during the holiday season.
On our way to the arcade, we passed by the ice skating rink, which we love, and Serina and I made plans to return next week to skate.
The arcade is one of my favourite wastes of money! Look at all of us crowding round the basketball hoops! We were all shouting with laughter at one point!
Here is Lan laughing as he watched Aravind and I play the pirate shooting game.
Will ya look at the concentration on our faces!
Of course I had to try the K-Pop dance machine. Even if I do suck at it. If I sucked any harder, I could sell off my vacuum cleaner.
Serina and Lan raced against each other, and Serina won! Attagirl!
Meanwhile, I engaged in a car race of my own. There was nobody around but Serina and me, but I waved to the non-existent crowds anyway.
Throwing in one final round of Street Basketball before we parted ways for the night to get ready for work the following morning.
We had a state holiday two days after my birthday, on account of it being the Sultan's birthday. So in the Sultan's honour, I woke up early, weeded the whole garden, cleaned the house, took Katniss to the vet, met up with my conveyancing lawyer, visited my former colleagues, volunteered at the SPCA shelter and went to help out at the SPCA booth at a Christmas fair.
Frontline treatment for the SPCA cats and kittens, especially the rescues and strays. Poor baby doesn't look very happy, does she?
And then I was off to help out at the SPCA booth at the Christmas Fair at Midvalley. Kelvin was there with another volunteer and sales were brisk! We sold out on so many items that Kelvin had to email the office to deliver fresh stocks.
Our dog-and-cat coin box has been given a fresh coat of paint and Santa hats. Don't they look life-like and adorable?
The woodland Christmas theme at Midvalley this year is positively darling. It definitely is the most wonderful time of the year!
Thank you all for being there for me as I made another trip around the Sun! It's been quite a ride!