As my birthday month draws to a close, please allow me to write about my 40th birthday one last time.
My 40th birthday was very special to me because despite not having my family and my closest friends around to celebrate an important milestone with, J and my new found friends in Wellington made sure that I had the best 40th birthday I could ever hope for.
And so the celebrations began a week early. On the 2nd of July, what I thought was a simple get-together to formally introduce me to the rest of the "power puff" girls turned into a surprise birthday party. Sort of. My friend E has previously mentioned about bringing my favourite cake (ube-macapuno)for dessert, but I didn't know that there was going to be party hats and candle-blowing involved.
I was deeply touched by the girls' thoughtfulness because honestly, I can't remember the last time I had this kind of birthday party- so simple yet so heartfelt. Even my mother was so happy when she saw my photos on facebook.
On my birthday weekend, we travelled to Sydney as planned. It was the best birthday weekend ever.
We arrived back in Wellington just before midnight on the 10th of July. Basically, I spent the last few minutes of my thirties at the airport and the first few minutes of my forties in a taxi. So, here's hoping to more travels in the coming years!
The following day (on my birthday), I woke up to a voice message from one of my favorite little ones Ethan, singing happy birthday to me. This was followed by a photo of him with a birthday cake. The sweetest thing ever. Thank you, Ethan.
Tired from our tip to Sydney, I didn't get up until about midday- one thing that I have not done in a very long time. Then we went to shop for food in the afternoon. Afterwards, I phoned my family. As expected, they celebrated my birthday with pancit for long life (haha) and some fried chicken.
In the evening, J and I had an intimate dinner at one of our favourite restaurants in Wellington, Boulcott Street Bistro. Finally, a birthday dinner without any fuss. Just the way I wanted it to be.
And then there was also a post birthday celebration. My friend Eirenne and I had a fantastic afternoon tea at Martha's Pantry in Cuba Street. Yes, I finally gave in to an afternoon tea and I really enjoyed it. And they had plain scones, too.
My three-week birthday celebration ended with a yummy Yum-cha at my favourite Chinese restaurant in Wellington- Majestic Cuisine in Courtenay Place.
And I have my Wellington clique to thank for that.
Although I was not expecting any gifts from anyone (as I just normally don't), J and some of my friends still made an effort to make me feel extra special on my birthday. My friend Katie bought me another acre of sunflower seeds in Uganda. Another friend of mine, Kemi sent me beautiful cards and a little book. The Wellington girls got me flowers and an apron, which I really need as I am cooking a lot more now. :)
Eirenne got me an easel, while J bought me a painting set. Now, I am pressured to paint.:p
Not to mention the overwhelming birthday greetings from family and friends on social media. There was so much love.
I honestly can't think of any better way I could have celebrated my 40th birthday. What happened in that three weeks encapsulated everything that is important to me: people, food, travel, love and happiness.
And that is how I did 40.