February 27, 2007

Celebration

To celebrate my 25th (Fine, fine! Just add 10 if you want to get really anal about the details..... Sheez!) birthday, I treated some of my most cherished family and friends to partake of the fabulously vast and famously delicious buffet at Hotel Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila's Spiral.


Amidst all the endless chatter and laughter over lunch, the restaurant staff suprised me by suddenly gathering at our table to sing me a Happy Birthday song...


...and present me with a scrumptious dark chocolate cake.


After extinguishing the candles with the more than enthusiastic help of my toddler...


....my ever-curious friends Pam and Jenni momentarily paused from their impromptu dessert critiquing session to ask what my birthday wish was.


I was suddenly stunned to realize I actually failed to make a wish before blowing out my candles!

Year and after year ever since I could remember, I had always made it a point to make a silent wish during my birthday. I could not believe I did not do it this time.

I found myself immediately mulling it over in my mind, until it dawned on me.

I did not make a wish because I did not have one. Right at that singular instance in time, I was simply and extraordinarily content with how my life was. I was surrounded by people I loved dearly and who loved me in return, sharing great food and basking in each other's presence.

My ultra-cool parents who are always, always there for their kids, no matter what or how or why...


My little big brothers who crack me up without even trying...


My beautiful grandmother whom nobody believes is 88....


My one and only lovely aunt Laly....


My sweet, sweet cousins Carmela and Camille (Margarita, we miss you!)....


And my super laugh-til-our-tummies-burst partners
Jennigirl and Pammy.


My marvelous husband, who thoughtfully made all the preparations, kept checking on all our guests to ensure everybody was having fun. From time to time, he would also check on me....as well as check me out. Bwahaha! He is really the best man ever.


My hyperactive son, who was very busy running around the hotel and saying hi to every stranger he saw, kept passing by my seat to flash his huge heart-melting impish smile and slap me a high-five.


The glorious day filled me with such an overwhelming sense of joy and fulfillment that rendered the need to wish for more unnecessary.

All I felt was grateful.


So to each and everyone of you who have made my life better and happier by being a part of it....

Thank you.

I love you all very much.

MwaaaaaaaH!!!

53 comments:

Cai said...

Happy Birthday!!! Glad you had a nice, big celebration.

Homo Escapeons said...

Happy 25-ish something..

hey as long as it's under the next Big (decade) ONE who is really counting.
You have a beautiful happy healthy family and great friends...
what else can you ask for?

don't answer that.

Bearette24 said...

I'm glad you had such a fun celebration! Thanks for being part of our lives, too :)

Plus Ultra said...

Happy "25th" Birthday Irene, wow you are very blessed! God is really good to you, I have started a parallel site, please check it out and leave your comments, better still sign up as a contact..click here http://alwaysmorebeyond.multiply.com

Irene said...

Cai: Thank you! =)

Homo Escapeons: 25-ish something...that's a fabulously accurate way to describe how youngish old I actually feel. HAHA!

Thanks for the greeting, dahling! ;p

Bearette: Thanks, beautiful! You're too sweet as always. =)

Plus Ultra: I believe we are as happy as we are grateful. Hope you're having a wonderful week. (",)

Janet a.k.a. "Wonder Mom" said...

My goodness...You have a wonderfully beautiful family!!!

Kirsten said...

Happy Birthday! I'm glad you had such a great day, and the beautiful setting was just the icing on the cake!

Masago said...

Wow! HB!

Claudia said...

Happy Birthday!!!

Irene said...

Wonder Mom Janet: Thanks, fellow Piscean! Again, happy birthday to you, too!

Kirsten: Thanks! The gorgeous ambience of the hotel was really an added bonus to the incredibly yummy food spread. I forgot to take pictures of the buffet. Arrrrgh!

Masago: Thank you! =)

Captivating Claudia: Thanks! When's your birthday? ;p

Menchie said...

Glad you had a good day Irene! And my god, we twenty-fivish girls rock! he he he!

Gigi said...

Happy Birthday! What a wonderful celebration. :)

So the Philippine Plaza is now a Sofitel? Is the waterfall wall still part of the restaurant downstairs or is it now gone (sorry for the questions -- the hotel is a huge part of my childhood memories, and I haven't been back in years!)?

Irene said...

Mench: You bet! We rule! WOOHOO! ;p

Gigi: Yes, Philippine Plaza is now a Sofitel. I know that waterfall wall of which you speak! I used to love watching the fish swim beneath it. =)

The hotel is going through a major overhaul under new management and that water wall is now gone. The restaurant Spiral takes up most of the lower level with a seating capacity of almost 500. The architecture and ambiance are just beautiful. (Don't even let me get started on the food!)

When you come back home, make sure you put it in your must-visit list. =)

vina said...

happy birthday again, irene!

good health and lots of fun and laughter to you and your family always!

krystyna said...

Hi Irene!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!
Thanks for sharing your feelings and beautiful photos!
I'm very glad being here and I enjoying this happy nice atmosphere. It is very nice surprise that restaurant staff sings Happy Birthday to you.
Hotel Sofitel Philippine Plaza looks wonderful.
Chocolate cake looks soo beautiful and tasty!
Great beautiful celebration and fantastik FAMILY! Your grandma looks beautiful and young!!!
Peace and Love to you and your Great Family and Friends!

krystyna said...

You are the Beautiful Queen of this wonderful celebration!

Irene said...

Vina: Thanks a lot for the well wishes! Hope you're having a great week. =)

Krystyna: Your comments always make me smile. Thank you for being ever so sweet and thoughtful. MwaaaaH! ;p

Kyels said...

Happy Birthday!

I am glad to see that you managed to have a blast!

(:

-Princess Shin- said...

Ur grandmother is 88? Oh my god.. she looks 60! What is her secret?

Happy Birthday my dear friend! See that you were certainly having great fun! Mine is today! =)

Steven Novak said...

Happy 25th!!! Er....ya.... ;)

Steve~

Kris said...

Glad you had a fantastic 21st birthday..because I mean come on..you don't look any older than 21! Your son is such a lady killer...he is going to break the hearts left and right. Cake looked delicious. Birthdays are always the best when you are surrounded by those you love!

KatieBelle said...

Happy belated birthday!

Oh man...what a wonderful celebration!! Thanks for posting the pics ;)

KatieBelle

v I v E k said...

hey irene, happy birthday to u..u had such a wonderful birthday party.i hoped u enjoyed every bits of it..

Maryanne Moll said...

Your grandma rocks. Seriously. :)

choochoo said...

that looks like a great party. I want one, too. Do you have to have a birthday in order to throw a birthday party? Maybe I can have a practise-party...

houseband00 said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, IRENE!!! =)

Pamela said...

happy birthday a day late.

Hey... you come from good genes.
Everyone looks much younger than they should be!!!

I'd love a piece of that cake.
Is that a piece of chocolate spiralinhg on the edge?

RTTguapa said...

ooh... i'm hungry... gonna have to try out that place.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

Scott from Oregon said...

Most excellent!!

Mimi Lenox said...

Happy Birthday and many more to come. You look happy and relaxed. What a great party you had!

Michael C said...

Looks like a great, great way to spend a B-day! Happiest of birthdays to you!!!

A chuisle said...

that sounds like a great day! and what a wonderful thing; to be content. i'm so happy for you.

Nabeel said...

awww happy birthday .. enjoy your next 365 day trip around the sun :)

Maria said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, IRENE! (belated...) it's not the age but how you live your life! so stop counting.

you have a lovely, happy family and friends!

slaghammer said...

I remember when I turned thirty-five, paper had not yet been invented which was no problem at all since the sum total of all human language consisted of only two words, “mammoth” and “Peter O’Toole.” I will now sing your birthday song.
We wish you a merry birthday
We wish you a merry birthday
We wish you a merry birthday
And a happy new year.
Wait a minute, I have my greeting cards mixed up, merry thirty-fifth birthday anyway.

Kora said...

Happy birthday and i am glad to hear it went great. Your family and friends look really happy for you. I am also happy to hear that you feel very content with everything. That is always a wonderfully happy feeling to have. Hope everything goes wonderful for you from this time till the rest of your long and happy life. teeehee... happiness is wonderful.
You're only as old as you say you are. teehee.. that is my favorite saying

-Kora

Smalltown RN said...

Happy Birthday to you....what a wonderful day you had....looks and sounds fabulous....cheers!

ShadowFalcon said...

Looks like a great day! Hope you had a wonderful birthday!

rmada said...

Irene,
Happy Birthday! That cake looked so delicious. Great pics, too!

zeroimpact said...

Happy belated birthday
That must have been a really great celebration
:)
May all your wish come true

thethinker said...

Happy "Twenty Fifth!"

Great pictures. That cake looks delicious.

Susan Abraham said...

Hi Irene,
I'm sure I had wished you happy birthday somewhere down the line but I'll happily say Happy Belated Birthday once more and more all your beautiful dreams come true.
I tried to leave a comment last and a few days ago, but Blogger was being very difficult on your blog and a few others. So sorry.
I really enjoyed looking at such ravishing pictures of your family that is covered with so much love and blessing. Good for you!
And yes, it is very hard to believe your grandmother is 88 years old. I got a shock! :-) love and a big hug.

Christina_the_wench said...

How touching! You are very blessed to have such a close knit family. *hugs*

Cazzie!!! said...

What a marvellous setting to be celebrating, what a lovely family and gorgeous roup of friends, who would want it any other way.
I hope health and happyness follow you always, and I shall visit your blog from now on.

jase said...

BELATED HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU MY DEAR !!!


MWAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH !!!!


Beautiful beatiful people around you. No wonder you are sooo fulfilled and happy! You are indeed sooo lucky!

Wish you the best of everything!!!

MYSTI said...

Happy Happy Birthday! I am glad your day was such a good one. Your family and friends are all so beautiful!

I hope this year brings you much joy and happiness.

Hugs,
Mysti

Peg said...

Cheers, Irene! I know I'm shamefully late in wishing you a happy birthday...I messed up my reader and thought you were on it, and just silent lately. Little did I know. Ugh!

I always love your photographs and love to see the warmth, and genuine affection that you share with your family and friends!

You are richly blessed...
:D

Helen said...

Happy birthday! That cake looks wonderful...
Helen

Jo said...

happy bday, looks like you had a blast, can I help you eat that cake plssssssssssssssss

Cathy said...

Irene, Happy belated Birthday! You have a beautiful family. Your son is adorable..

Where are you?

psycho-therapist said...

what a lovely posting, irene! you are indeed one blessed person- maybe you can send out that wish albeit belatedly for a little world peace. happy happy birthday to a beautiful soul.
lisa

Belle said...

Nice photos! Great looking family and friends you got there! Birthdays are truly going to be awesome because of those special people around us. Just a thought though, Sofitel has an ongoing photo contest on Facebook, I think it's a primer for Spiral's re-opening this November, you may want to join, here is the link: http://www.facebook.com/SofitelManila/app_372342376178592.

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