Saturday, February 23, 2013

Aye Aye My Eye

Warning: Graphic content unsuitable for the young and the faint-hearted

I'm suffering from a corneal infection with 3 ulcers in my left eye.

Before I experienced this myself, I never ever knew that ulcers could grow in the eye. You know how painful ulcers in the mouth are? Try having them in the eye. Nope, don't ever try coz I pray that nobody, nobody should ever get ulcers for corneal infection. Having ulcers in the eye is one of the most excruciating pain ever. Fortunately the pain is almost gone by the time I'm crafting this post.


The Beginning

It started on the wee hours of Sunday morning. After a CNY gathering with friends, I removed my coloured contacts and felt pain and discomfort in my left eye each time I blinked. The pain felt as if I had a hole in my eye. After cleansing my face and showering, I noticed lots of broken capillaries. The pain got more intense and I had no choice but to close my eyes and drift off to sleep.

Bimbotic thoughts aloud: I hate my freckles/ sun spots whatever you call them.

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The next day, the "hole-y" pain continued. It was a Sunday and still a CNY weekend so we had guests over at our place. Buddy Cyn and Godson Jase also dropped by to visit and I could still managed a goofy smile through the pain and discomfort.

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The Intense Pain Started

After a day of rest away from contact lens, I thought that the pain and discomfort would slowly dissipate. I was in for a shock the next day. I woke up with excruciating pain and could hardly open my left eye at all. Each time I sat up or stood up, there was immense blood pressure at the eye. It was so intense that I felt like my eye would just burst and spew blood. The pressure on the eye not only caused pain but induced a bad headache and nausea and hence I called in sick.

I tried getting back to sleep but was in so much pain and discomfort that I had to call my hubby from work and asked if he could take me to see some eye specialist. By that time, I could not open my left eye anymore. Apparently the people at his workplace felt my condition was serious when he informed them. After making some arrangements, he came back and sent me to an eye specialist whose number I found off the Internet.

Being cooped up indoors with the blinds drawn, I was not ready for the bright sunlight outside. Even with shades on, the light blinded me and tears flowed down uncontrollably. I felt like a vampire there and then burning under the scorching sun.


At the Eye Specialist

Over at the clinic, the doctor had difficulty trying to open my eye for all the various tests and he had to support my lid while doing the tests. He tested my vision, dilated my eye, dripped some substance into my eye every now and then and after sitting at 3 machines for tests, he told me that I was suffering from a corneal infection with ulcers. There was also lots of white blood cells floating about in the aqueous which made it cloudy. Fortunately my vision wasn't affected by the cloudiness and ulcers as the latter weren't over my pupil.

Kh and I were pretty amused coz we had never heard of ulcers in the eye before. When the doctor pointed out the 3 white spots as ulcers, Kh was totally grossed out. We thought that we could see the ulcers only from the doctor's camera and when he told us that they could be seen with the naked eye, we were quite excited to see the ulcers.

The top picture shows the ulcers (the 3 white spots) as seen with the naked eye and the bottom picture shows the spots taken with the special camera. Ignore the Sadako-looking eye at the botton left picture. The doctor told me to look down when he took that shot.

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How Corneal Infection Occur

The main reason why corneal infections occur would be because of bacteria entering the microscopic scratches on our cornea(from daily wear and tear especially from the constant removing of soft contact lens from the eye) and causing an infection. Ulcers may not necessarily follow but if they do, there would be great pain on top of the bloodshot condition. The doctor speculated that in my case, it could have been due to frequent contact lens wear.

As I was raining lots of questions on the doctor, I suddenly realised that I could open my eye without much difficulty. It was then that he told me he dripped anesthetic into my eye. I was almost thrilled and asked if I could buy that wonderful solution. Of course he said no.


Lessons to Take Home from this Experience

Here comes a few lessons to take home from my experience. I hope that this would serve as a warning to all contact lens users out there. But before that, here are some facts to chew on first.

1. I'm one who never gets eye infection till this experience.
2. I've been wearing monthly disposable soft contact lens for more than 10 years, not every day but most of the time.
3. I've only worn 3 different brands of monthly disposable contact lens -- Geo, Freshkon, Freshlook ColorBlends.
4. I could wear my contact lens for a lot more than 12 hours without feeling discomfort.
5. I fell asleep on a few occasions with my contact lens on without any serious problem.
6. I'm playing with my eye but I sometimes wear my contact lens for more than a month without any serious problem. (Both for clear and coloured)
7. For monthly disposable coloured lenses, I wear them for a lot more than a month. I have the mentality that since I only wear them on occasions, I tend to focus more on the few  number of times I wear them as oppose to wearing them only once or twice and then throwing them away after a month. I'm sure there are many of you out there with the same mentality as me so please, don't do that! Our eyes are a lot more important than thinking about the number of times a lens is worn.

From the above, you could see how many times I ill-treated my eyes without suffering any major problem at all. All these made me more daring.

My good friend Gera who studied optometry often shakes her head when she knows of my practices and got tired of telling me off. I am finally getting my just desserts and this has made me a little more kiasu.

I know that with many gals and even guys love to wear coloured lenses, circle lenses or what you call those  big eye contacts. Speaking of which, I also wore those daily disposable enlarging black lens on 2 occasions. Those were the worst on me. My eyes turned red without pain both times I used them.

Other than all the risks of having the colour dye going into the eyes for those cheap imitations and all the other risk factors involved  wearing coloured contacts on a daily basis in the long run would affect vision. Even with all this knowledge, vain people like us still continue to wear lenses and some of us do not even clean our lenses and cases thoroughly.

I have been going to work with glasses and no make up at all the past week. I would rather play safe than to look pretty. Beside that, I will continue to wear my glasses for quite a while even after my eye has healed. It is good to give my eye a break. I wouldn't want to be causing scratches on my eye surface by constantly pinching the lens out. The reason why I do not like wearing glasses is coz they would give me double vision due to my huge difference in degree. Contact lens gave me no such problem at all.

I had better stop all my 7 bad habits of eye care (or the lack of) before something more serious than corneal infection with ulcers happen. BTW if corneal infection is not treated, one could go blind. So please do not play play with your eyes. It is better to look plain than to go blind.



PS: Thank you dear hubby for being my eyes that day. No thank you for saying my intellect seemed to have gone down together with my blindness and for saying that you wished the anesthetic wore off soon coz I was annoying by talking too much when I was not in pain.   

Monday, February 18, 2013

Valentine's Day Dinner at 漁 Yú Cuisine

Valentine's Day this year coincided with the the 5th day of the Lunar New Year. Both the hubby and I were on leave for the whole week after the CNY public holidays. Kh had been bugging me to apply for leave for a staycation at Marina Bay Sands (MBS) Hotel for our 12th year anniversary this year. Unfortunately after all the feasting and irregular meal timing during the CNY, my tummy problem was acting up really bad. The 2 days of leave proved more like a medical leave for me as I caught up with lots of loss sleep, lazed at home, slumped and hunched from pain while playing Candy Crush Saga.

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Due to my tummy problem, Kh did not plan anything in advance for Valentine's Day and did not make any reservation at any restaurant. When my tummy was feeling much better, we were racking our brains on where to go and I decided on walking into any restaurant at MBS The Shoppes which would accept walk-in patrons. We tried our luck at 漁 Yú Cuisine and sure enough they had seats for us.

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"漁 Yú Cuisine is a modern and hip chinese seafood, dimsum, grill and champagne bar concept restaurant. Spread over two levels, one can enjoy the entire spectacular view of Marina Bay in the evening on Yú’s upper level over your favorite champagne, wine or just a glass of chilled beer with the most delectable dimsum, grill and exotic seafood."

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Here is a collage of me before (with 27 hours without food with headache and nausea building up together with the tummy pain) and after (enjoying the first solid food at 漁 Yú Cuisine after 27 hours).

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Since we were walk-in patrons, we were ushered to the seats that were facing the insides of the shopping mall rather than those window seats with spectacular views. We were only glad that they accepted us.

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With the bubbles and blue themed lighting, I felt like a fish in an aquarium.

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The restaurant offered a CNY set menu and a Valentine's Day set menu on top of the usual à la carte. We opted for the latter as we were quite hungry to think of what to order.


The fish skin crackers appetizer was lightly salted and very crunchy. I love it!

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The roast meat platter consisted of roast pork, roast duck and char siew served with wasabi mustard sauce and plum sauce. I love the roast pork and roast duck a lot. They tasted so good on their own without the sauce and tasted just as good with the wasabi mustard sauce. The char siew was well charred but as char siew is on the sweet side, it did not quite agree with my taste bud that evening. Sweet food that evening seemed to trigger lots of pain.

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I'm simply craving for the shark cartilage soup with fish maw and scallop as I'm typing this. This is one of the best shark cartilage soup I've ever tasted. I try as much as possible to avoid ordering shark fin soup unless with a huge group of relatives or at Chinese wedding dinner that serve the dish. I sure hope that for shark cartilage soup, the sharks are not inhumanely treated as of shark finning. Does anyone have any idea?

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A call from work disrupted our conversation.

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The things I do when I've got nothing to do.

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By the 3rd dish, which was asparagus, squid and mini clams fried with XO (which taste really like sambal), all the 3 different kinds of sick (tummy pain, headache, nausea) were plaguing me and I wasn't enjoying the dish to my fullest capacity. The dish was a little spicy and I was merely picking at all the asparagus. Kh gladly finished my share, all the while commenting that this place served really good Chinese food and that we should bring our families there. I didn't know this restaurant is rated so well on hungrygowhere.com. I feel like trying some of the dishes that the reviewers recommend.

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I can't remember how this king prawn dish was cooked as by then, I could only finish half of the prawn while kh gladly took my leftover including the cholesterol-rich prawn head.

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The glutonous rice with lap cheong (Chinese sausage) was too sweet for my liking. After a small spoonful, my nausea was building up and once more, everything was passed to kh.

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The pink honeydew sago with black pearls was extremely refreshing. I finished everything and was craving for more despite feeling nauseous for all the sweet dishes before.

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My 2nd sis took this picture for us. It was such a coincidence to bump into her at MBS The Shoppes.

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This unobservant lady strolled past the whole length of the restaurant from the outside while looking in and she did not even notice 2 stupid idiots waving their arms wildly to catch her attention. I had to call her on her mobile, asked her to freeze in her tracks, u-turn and take 20 steps back. This lady could even tell me that as she was looking into the restaurant, she had a hunch that kh and I would be here.

...

Then why you no see us???



After dinner, kh and I went window shopping. I liked how the water was gushing down from the inverted dome and I liked imagining that we were trapped from the outside world as I peered through the glass dome at the outside.

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Oh dear! Will the gondola be sucked into the whirpool?

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It was our first time in The Louis Vuitton Island Maison. For a pictorial tour of The LV Island Maison, head over to this site.


There was an ongoing exhibition. Check out the Chinese characters on the corals.

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Chinese characters on the wood.

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Chinese characters on the (fossil rock?)

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I've been wanting to get kh a messenger bag ever since our Europe trip. The plan was put on hold since a messenger bag isn't really a necessity for somebody who seldom carries a bag. However when he does need a bag, he will not have any suitable one that could match his formal and smart casual outfits. We finally found a brown leather messenger bag that he really liked from Gucci.

Side note: We spent a lovely 1 hour plus in the boutique due to a very affable sales assistant. We were really impressed by her service. She even wrote a Thank You card for us each as I wrote her a good feedback.

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I thought it was rather interesting that the loading and unloading "carpark" was opened to public due to the crowd on V day. This was taken at the end of the night. When we first parked, I was awed by all the cars parked in neat rows in the massive space the size of football fields even without any markings.

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Although I was sick, I enjoyed the short evening out after being cooped at home the past 2 days. Happy V day and anniversary to you, hubby deardear!

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I did not have a full length shot for my outfit of the day. I was dressed totally in black -- black dress, black bag, black shoes, black black eye make up. It was the exact same look as last Halloween. I was just feeling really black.

♥ Max Mara black fringed dress
♥ Black boots from Bangkok
♥ Salvatore Ferragamo bag

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

It is a few more hours to Valentine's Day so here's wishing all of you a Happy Valentine's Day.

Well, Valentine's Day isn't just for couples. It is a day to show your love to your family and friends and even to strangers. Spread the love, give a little love like what I shared on my blog the other time.

As for those who have yet to prepare anything, are you running out of time to hand-make some craft or bake some cookies? Why not whip up something simple? I've collated some really simple Valentine's Day ideas coz me being so lazy, I can't even bother to read till the end of the ingredients list for some Valentine's recipe that I found on the Internet.

So lazy people let's unite and read on!



~*Love Toast Bread*~

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You need:
- bread
- heart-shaped cookie cutter
- egg

♥ Press the cookie cutter down onto the bread.
♥ Place the bread onto a lightly greased frying pan on low heat.
♥ Crack the egg into the hole.
♥ Cook the egg according to the doneness you like.
♥ Serve with sides like ham, bacon, fresh garden vegetables.

Be creative with your love toast bread and have fun!



~*Sunny Love Up Eggs*~

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You need:
- egg
- heart-shaped egg mold

You don't even need me to tell you how to fry a sunny side up egg, do you?



~*Heart Boiled Eggs*~

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You need:
- egg
- milk carton or any juice carton (cut open, washed well and dried)
- chopsticks
- rubber bands

♥ Cut milk carton and fold it in half lengthwise.
♥ Make a hard boiled egg.
♥ While the egg is still warm, peel the egg and put the egg on the milk carton.
♥ Place a chopstick on the center of the egg and tie rubber bands on the both ends.
♥ Leave it to cool for about 1 hour.
♥ Take the chopstick off and cut the egg into half.
♥ Now you have heart boiled eggs for your egg salad or as a finger food.
♥ Serve with a dash of creativity.

If you are not a textual person, this video would help a lot!





~*Strawberry Nutella Crackers*~

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You need:
- sweet crackers (those airy kind)
- strawberries
- nutella (or any chocolate sauce)
- mini heart-shaped cookie cutter

♥ Cut strawberries lengthwise to resemble a heart.
♥ Using the smallest heart-shaped cookie cutter, press into crackers and peel off the flakes within the heart.
♥ Cut strawberries to fit.
♥ Drizzle nutella into the hole and press strawberry in.

Note: This is my own directions from what I see in the picture. I sure hope it works coz I've not tried it before.



~*Heart-Shaped Butter on Muffins*~

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You need:
- muffins
- butter
- mini heart-shaped cookie cutter

Noooo!!! I'm not gonna give directions on how to make a muffin. This is for the laziest people around who  would just pop by the store to buy some raspberry or cranberry muffins and cut heart-shaped butter out from cookie cutters. Such a cheat right?



~*No Bake Pots De Creme*~

This is the only one that requires more steps and for the full directions, please click here.

It is supposed to be simple as it doesn't require baking. However upon reading the directions, lazy me simply gave up though I would still love to share this with my more hardworking readers who could whip up a feast in the kitchen.

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Sunday, February 10, 2013

Happy Snake Year

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Happy Lunar New Year to all my Chinese readers! 新年快樂!

身體健康

心想事成

一帆風順

And to all my Singaporean Chinese readers, enjoy these 4 days of visiting, feasting and spending time with your loved ones. To my non-Chinese Singaporean readers, enjoy the break! Yeah, we lost 2 days due to the weekend but still, 4 days away from work is worth popping the champagne bottle.

Have fun!

Monday, February 04, 2013

Jac's Birthday Celebration at The Coastal Settlement

"The Coastal Settlement - a casual dining restaurant, cafe and bar, provides you the one of its kind village home-like environment, with a view of Mother Nature’s plantation of greens and a peek of the sea. Take a break and extricate yourself from your hectic metropolitan lifestyle and allow yourself to enter an aura of relaxation in a halcyon atmosphere. Come, relive the old days gone by with your family and friends, there will be much to talk about..."

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It was my second time to The Coastal Settlement in the day and even though I love the rustic charm of the place by the day, I would really love to go there at night for I often hear from my friends that it is really lovely by the night as well.

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Last Sunday, we were there to celebrate Jac's birthday. Well, actually her boyfriend's birthday was in January too so we celebrated both their birthdays together.

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We could help ourselves with the packets of biscuits.

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The packet contained our childhood "flower biscuits" and a cheese cracker. When we were young, most of us would eat the sugared flower parts and toss the biscuits away. For me, I would always eat the biscuit part first and lay all the flowers in a row grouped according to their colours as I pretended to be a florist. Super lame now that I'm saying this at such an age.

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Things you no longer see around except as props.

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Old school music player. I don't even see this when I was young. This must have dated back way before.

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These are moulds for making traditional kueh. These are still pretty much in use as we still have those kuehs around.

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Who doesn't love a classic Vespa? Speaking of Vespa, my bro-in-law just bought a classic red vespa after selling his mint blue one a year ago. Now I'm kicking myself for stopping my riding lessons.

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It was already afternoon but we were still in time for brunch as brunch is served till 4pm. TCS does know how to cater for lazy people.

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While waiting for everyone to arrive, we shared some side dishes all of which were delicious.

Portobello Fries lightly crumbed with truffle mayonnaise dip... Yummy! Crisp on the outside and juicy on the inside.

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Calamari with a unique passion fruit mayonnaise dip.

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Truffle Fries... Makes me wonder how I could eat other types of fries after being addicted to truffle fries.

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Some chicken which I didn't get to eat.

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Mac n Cheese. This is the best Mac n Cheese I've ever eaten. There are three different types of cheese and I could taste gourmet cheese in there.

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For mains, more than half of us ordered the Steak and Eggs with our eggs done scrambled style. I've never seen beef steak and eggs on the same plate before but that didn't really deter us from ordering it. It was one of the best medium rare steak ever! I'm never a fan of fats in meat but the fats in this steak simply melts in your mouth.

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The rest had the Smiling Eggs Benedict.

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Daddy, Mummy and Belle.

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Happy family photo bomb by kh. Belle was watching her Elmo show on the iPad which was dragged away from her to get her to look at the camera but to no avail.

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The hubby is usually good with kids but somehow, the chemistry between him and Belle just doesn't match. Belle never ever smiles with him around and she even cries.

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In fact, Belle is so shy that she seldom smiles or laughs when with us as a big group. She has the cutest smile ever but it is just very difficult to make her smile.

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After Daddy monkeyed around for a few minutes, Belle finally let out a toothy grin for my camera.

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I wanted an individual shot of Jully but kh didn't let it happen, leading to having his ear pulled by her.

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Jerm wore a super funny Black Bear + White Bear = Fight = Merged into Panda T shirt. Panda is all the rage in Singapore now with the arrival of Jia Jia and Kai Kai -- the panda pair in our zoo.

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The birthday couple and their accidental couple T shirts. They claimed they did not agree to wear the same colour.

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Couple not. SL's cousin-in-law from Canada joined us for the brunch before he flew off that day.

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The newly wedded couple for the day. I can't help marvelling at how they look like twins with their eyes, nose and smile and especially when they have their glasses on.

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The flat hair couple. I dunno why both our hair looked super flat that day.

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Jully asked me to pull kh's ear while she pulled the other side for the next photo. These 2 ah, always at loggerheads since their schooling days. Can't be helped as kh is one of the most annoying person ever. He could pit against The Annoying Orange.

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After our meal, it was time for dessert in the form of Jac and Jon's birthday cake.

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The lovely couple. Happy birthday Jon and Jac!

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Make a wish, give a kiss, cut the cake. May your love continue to blossom!

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A parting shot...

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And another with the attractive vintage props behind as background.

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Outfit of the day:
♥ Denim Dress from Cowboy Series
♥ Salvatore Ferragamo bag

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Btw I wore the denim dress on purpose as I bought Belle a Zara Baby denim dress. When daddy WL and mummy B took out the dress, they went, "So cuuuuuuuuute!!!" I bought it in a bigger size so that Belle could wear it when she is bigger since kids grow out of their clothes very quickly but guess what? The dress could actually fit Belle now. Daddy WL watsapp me these pictures and it was my turn to exclaim, "So cuuuuuuuuute!!!" WL said that if Belle wears the dress during any of our outing, he would make sure he let me know so that I could wear the demin dress too.

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It is so rare to see Belle smiling like this. Flor could not make it for the brunch that day though she visited the Chan family that night. WL could not help but send this picture to provoke kh. The secret weapon to carry Belle and make her laugh? ELMO!

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The hectic week concluded with a lovely brunch with friends, lots of catch up snooze and the start of spring-cleaning for the Chinese New Year.

See all of you during CNY!

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