21 Again – Part 1

Birthday

One month ago, on 4/4, I turned 21 for the n-th time. It was truly special; full of joy, laughter and a couple of firsts, I don’t think I’ve ever felt so loved on a birthday before.

What ensued was more or less a week of celebration, with a 3-birthday combined party the night before my birthday and a ridiculously sweet surprise to end my actual birthday. Sorry, all photos taken on iPhone, I got lazy about taking an actual camera around with me, plus so much of it was unexpected.

To start, my dad flew out to LA to visit. He arrived on Thursday 3/31 and stayed for a week, literally just to celebrate my birthday with me and see how my life is in LA. I’d told my family about how much I loved Santa Monica and my CBCWLA family, and naturally my family were relieved albeit curious. He had free time, so came to visit.

IHOP Breakfast

The first few days of his arrival passed pretty peacefully with Business As Usual. Dad accompanied me to the office, to fellowship, to dance class, to the marriage series on Saturday. Sunday happened as per usual as well during the day. Then in the evening, 26 of us showed up to Bud Namu for K-BBQ.

Bud Namu

Once everyone had more or less finished eating, they brought out a stunning cake. Daniel & Ceri had prepared an Oreo chocolate cake with Oreo cookie cream, decorated with real Oreo cookies and strawberries. It was one of the most delicious cakes I’ve ever eaten: rich, but not heavy.

Michael, Luke and I had birthdays very close together, so we took this occasion to celebrate our combined birthdays.

Birthday Celebration

Birthday Kids

Birthday

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Then the selfie-taking began, and you’ll find this became a trend during my birthday celebrations, ha. I had to combine most of them since there were just so many!

Birthday Selfies

See if you can spot the terrifying creeper in this one:

Birthday Selfies

It was particularly hilarious when we looked at the photos on my phone and zoomed in on him, hehe.
Turns out we’re all incapable of being non-blurry at the same time, so I just made a collage of the other selfies on that night:

Selfie Collab

Shortly after, someone decided it’d be a good idea to smear cake on the birthday kids. For the first time ever, I ended up with birthday cake on my cheek, hair and ear… and honestly? I loved it! I felt like such a child again. Thanks, guys! That said, I wouldn’t want to do it again :p

We said our goodnights shortly after that, but here’s a group pic before the cake-fight began:

Bud Namu Birthday

Thanks so much, everyone <3 Especially to Daniel & family for preparing the cake and our cards, and Mama Jon for treating me & daddy! Also thanks to the Bud Namu staff who put up with us, hehe. We weren't able to finish the cake in the end as we were so stuffed but we'd already thrown the cake box away, so we gave the rest to the Bud Namu staff. I hope they enjoyed it as a small token of our gratitude as well :)

On the day of my birthday, I took the afternoon off. I picked up my dad and Bean and we headed up to Malibu for lunch.

Malibu Seafood Fresh Fish Market & Patio Cafe

We ate at Malibu Seafood Cafe with a beautiful view. The food was fresh and tasty too. I’d say more, but this isn’t a food review :p I would totally go back though, and definitely recommend it!

Malibu Cafe

Here’s a pic to give you a better idea of the view, and then the same photo lightened. Shame the pic becomes so noisy after lightening!

Malibu Seafood Cafe view

Malibu Beach Cafe

Malibu

We then headed over to the place I saw Pierce Brosnan on my very first trip to California 1.5years ago for a snooze, some iced coffee and lots of selfies.

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I promise I am not usually this vain, but I think once a year as a memento is okay, right?

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END:

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That evening, we had dinner at Bean & Roberto’s place. I love Bean’s cooking, she’s so talented and totally inspired me to start cooking again! And Roberto is a pizza chef, so there we go. My stomach is always happy when I’m with them. Since we had a late lunch and we were all looking for something light to eat given our K-BBQ feast the night before, Bean made us soup and veggies, which was exactly what we needed. I love her!

At around 9pm, I was getting tired and decided to head home, which was perfect timing as dad was still jet-lagged and wanting to go back and rest. That’s when I received a very unexpected text from my housemate:

“You have some friends over!”

I was like, what??

…More on this tomorrow, because this post is already getting too long and I am knackered. I think I’m coming down with something again, my colleague had to call in sick today and my other colleague is already sick. I am more or less always sick, so it’s bedtime for me before I get worse methinks :)

Love! x

21 Again - Part 2
Missing You, CBCWLA.

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