So my party had a photobooth..

We sure knew how to rock one.

Photobooth pictures by http://lanovella.com.sg

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Because there wasn’t enough space in my previous post for Thank You’s, here’s some more to express my gratitude.. I’m long-winded like that!

To the friends I’ve met through blogging: Thank you, crazy blogger girls for whoring it up in front of my photobooth, taking ten thousand vain spastic shots, wasting my photographers’ resources ah… LOL. Just kidding. I have much love for you gorgeous people! So blessed to have met genuine and like-minded people through my blogging days, and I no longer have to feel lonely at events, or pretend to be somebody I’m not in front of y’all just for you to like me. I am thankful everyday for the opportunities given to me, and the great people I’ve met because of it. I’ve had a lot of  fun & memorable times with most of you over the years, events that I won’t forget. All of you have impacted my life in one positive way or another, which is why I just had to have you at my party! :*


To my real life friends: To the people who couldn’t make it to the party but still hold a place in my heart, you’re awesome. Obviously, everyone at the party was DEFINITELY awesome. You accept my weirdness, my strange behavior and my quirks. That means a lot. I love our time spent together. I don’t bother with people I don’t like, it’s either I like you a lot or I don’t like you at all. So that means you’re really, really special to me. ♥ To the ones I couldn’t invite to the party because of my 35-guests-limit – I’m sorry and I still think you’re really cool. Please don’t take it personally, I would invite at least 50 people if I could!

To my mother, and father: Thank you for bringing me up and for the love you’ve shown me throughout my life, especially mama. Dad has always been super strict, but I see now that he just wanted his daughter to grow up to be a well-grounded woman who is responsible and successful. Well, I try to be, Dad. It means so much to me when you told me you were very proud of me, because it’s something I never thought I’d hear. I thought you would resent my baking profession forever, passing it off as frivolous and unproductive, but for you to understand what it means to me and the potential it has means.. everything. It was never my intention to let you down by not going to university. I miss you everyday. To mama, I tell you all the time that I love you. So I’m sure you know by now. Sometimes you’re a crazy woman and that’s where I think I got my craziness from. But I know that you would always want the best for me, and try to provide that whenever possible. Now that I see you less, I finally realize how amazing it is to have a caring parent around to nag at you all the time, and to take care of your needs. I miss your nagging, and your homecooked meals. If you ever cook for me again, I swear I won’t complain that the food is boring. There is nothing in the world like  homecooked meal by someone who loves you. Thanks to the freedom you’ve granted me in my teenage years, you allowed me to experience things most people my age still have to wait years more for. Even when I rebelled and flunked real bad in school, got into a shit heap of trouble and insisted on going out with bad boys….. you never gave up on me, and you’ve always been my rock. I love the both of you and it’s a lifelong dream to see you two be in the same room, getting along again.

To Multifolds photography / Melvin: I’ve only gotten to know you better in recent months, but in this short span of time, I think you’re a great friend, and a very professional and friendly photographer with gorgeous captures to boot! I know you don’t usually do birthdays because you’re super busy and always flying here and there for your lovescapades, so thank you so much for snapping my birthday pictures for me. Melvin takes the best couple photos, that in my opinion, captures the moment entirely. You can follow Melvin’s photography on Facebook, where he updates with amazing pictures regularly!

To my man Charles, whom I mentioned I didn’t have a picture of in my previous post (then he sent one to me over whatsapp lol)..

The party wouldn’t have been as wonderful if it weren’t for all your hard work, sweat, worrying and advice as an event planner! This was the guy who ran around helping me carry heavy things, did the floor planning, liaised with all my other sponsors, he’s the one who made sure NOTHING can go wrong.. the person who ran the entire show that night. I literally just rocked up at the venue and did nothing because he had everything covered. He was my superman that night :’) The party was perfect because of such meticulous planning. I really appreciate all that you, Jolene, Vilvian and Gui Jie have done for me, WAY beyond what you guys initially offered to do as sponsors, you people treat me like a real friend and did everything in such a heartfelt manner, entertaining my silly &  ridiculous princessy requests.. because I know you wanted me to have a party that was unforgettable. Thank you for making it happen. Charles also co-owns Fox Out, one of my favorite online fashion stores in Singapore! I’ve done a feature of their apparels before, and you can be sure there will be a next one in the near future ;)


..And that’s how a glittery 21st birthday party happened.

I’ll always remember it as one of the best nights in my life. 

xoxo,
Jess

xoxo,
Jess

My Glittery 21st Birthday Partay!!!

You’d never believe how much has happened in my life since September 20th (my 21st birthday)!!!!

 With all that was happening around me, time just went by so fast, I didn’t even notice it’s been 2 months since the big two one. Now I’m finally settled in a new rented house with internet connection with 50% of my stuff packed, so I’ve decided this post cannot wait any longer…. I MUST share about my epic 21st birthday celebrations with all of you!!! Before it becomes 2014, and it’s all too late. To those who have been waiting for this post a long time.. Really. Sorry. And thank you for your patience! You’ll be pleased to know there are over a whopping hundred photos in this blog post, and I’m not sorry at all for how lengthy this entry is going to be. IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!!!! Although it’s over, I can still bask in its reminiscent glory. For years and years to come.

So here we go! Let’s talk about my party.

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For all my life, I never gave much thought about what I’d do for my 21st party.

 It only became a bigger deal as the actual date drew closer. I’ve never been much of a “omg guyzzz it’s my birthday” sort of girl. The last proper birthday party I had was like when I was 10, and my mother booked a chalet and ordered me a Little Mermaid cake. Sure, through the years I’ve had gatherings and dinners with friends and loved ones, but it wasn’t a themed party with decorations, a guest list, etc. Those take too much work (and if I can be frank, money as well… amirite?!) It was only somewhere in July or August this year, 1 month before my birthday party, that I started freaking out. “What if my 21st birthday party ISN’T a big deal….????? D:”. I know that seems like a petty and frivolous thought for someone who is turning into an adult to have, but honestly, when is the next time in my life I’m ever going to be celebrated like that? To do it every year seems over the top and unnecessary, and yet if I don’t do it for my 21st, when would celebrating your existence be a good time? When I’m 50?

WHAT IF I DON’T MAKE IT TO 50 YEARS OLD?! The next biggest thing would be my wedding, and gee, I’m not even sure if anybody out there in this world would marry me. So I decided….. once in my life, I wanted to make myself to be a big deal (yeah as if I don’t come onto my blog and do that all the time) and I decided, YES, I am going to have a fabulous 21st party. And so, with a month of frantic planning and discussions, surprisingly enough….. we pulled it off. By we, I mean me and my AMAZING team of genuine, lovely people whom I’m ever so grateful for…. because the party turned out so much better than I’d expected (with only 4 weeks to prep for everything!) and without them, there really wouldn’t be a party at all.

I had a hard time trying to figure out what the theme of the party should be, and finally settled on Glitter Glamour (Formal Cocktail) despite how cliche it is.. because my venue would have sparkling lights in the distance as the backdrop and we’d be making merry under the stars – I just thought it’d be so appropriate! Or really, just because I love sparkly things. *shrugs* Reason enough by my standards.

So, I came up with the invitation above *chuckles at Live While We’re Young line* and sent it out to over 30 guests… and then came Thursday, 19th September 2013 - showww time!

 I wouldn’t have chosen to have the party on a weekday if not for the fact that I was being hosted by the kind people at Moonstone who preferred if I held it on the 19th instead of 20th (actual day.) The offer was WAY too awesome to pass up… I mean come on………. would you pass up on a breathtaking view like this?!?

Certainly not me!!! P.E.R.F.E.C.T. ♥
I got to the party venue around 4pm, to find that my event planners, decorators and sponsors were already at the scene, hard at work, sprinkling their fairy dust all over the place to turn it into something magical  :’) I didn’t even have an ounce of make up on because I had a make up artist waiting to doll me up…. I could get used to feeling this pampered!!!!!!!!

An unglamorous shot of me applying my eyeliner taken by Marie. She actually did all of my hair and make up you’ll see in these pictures, I’m just very picky about how my eyeliner is drawn so that’s the only thing she left me to do! I just had to sit back, close my eyes… and 30 minutes later I was partay-readay!

I tried to offer my help to the wonderful pixies that were helping me set up, but everyone just shoo-ed me away with “Don’t worry!!! Go and sit down. It’s your day. Just relax and let us do the work.” I was so touched I wanted to cry…. and that was just the start of the day.

Nobody would take my help, so I just walked around doing stuff like this.

Making a moustache out of pretty streamers I had hanging from the ceiling.

Showing my nail sponsors, Mabel & Christine, how the chrome birthday gelish set they did for me was holding up.

And this.

Posing in front of my glittery backdrop that has S H I B E R T Y spelled out on buntings… Oh. my. god.

I walked around the venue several times, trying to take it all in. All this was happening. For me. This wonderful party that’s about to happen, right now.

I mean, seriously. WOW. Balloons, lots of candles, fresh flowers, ribbons, streamers, red carpet… no expense was spared!

After awhile, I was just lazing around waiting for my guests to roll in! I can’t believe what a diva I was that day. I assure you that on normal days, I work very hard. To whoever is planning a birthday party… get an event planner. Be it hiring a professional one or making your best friend your slave for the day, trust me, you’ll need help. If you try to manage everything on your own, you’ll be too stressed out and busy to enjoy yourself!

My superman of the day was a man named Charles. Unfortunately, I realize I have NO photos taken with him that day… how could it be!!!!!!!! I owe everything to this man!!!!!!!!! :( Still kicking myself over it.

One of the first guests to arrive was my momma bear. I am a big mummy’s girl and I ain’t afraid to show it!

In matching mother & daughter formal attire :)

With my crazy bitch crayner Diana. I love this girl and she doesn’t even know it!

That’s Vanessa and Joey laying out a red carpet in front of the photobooth! Yes, I asked for a red carpet to be at the party. Lol. I didn’t really think they’d actually make it happen, though. But they did.

After some time, the guests started flowing in one by one, that I didn’t even notice if somebody had arrived because I was probably preoccupied taking pictures somewhere. I spent the most time in front of the photobooth!!!

No idea what I’m doing in this pic but here’s my mum and Marie getting their nails done at the live gelish booth!!!

Peggy and Xavier intently decorating my guest book! They’re such a silly and fun couple to be around :)

I love my girlfriends!!!! ♥ ♥ ♥

My favorite couple, Mel and Jon!!!! These two have become some of my bestest friends in recent months, I adore them both to bits! ♥

As the sun started to set and beautiful colors were painted across the sky.. live music began as Marc and Hashy serenaded everyone with their soothing & kick ass voices respectively, then delicious Japanese food from Moonstone’s own kitchen was served!

Raina, one of the great things I got from entering The Final 1 competition, also agreed to sing for my birthday and she has the voice of an angel. I miss hanging out with her & Cyril so much!!!!! Why are you two always so busy!

Somewhere along the way, I was forced to take the mic and sing as well. I was TOTALLY unprepared and I sucked soooo bad singing “Skinny Love.”  The older I get, the worse I think I am at singing. What was I ever thinking… lol. I think I’ll stick to making cakes.

I am now forever scarred, and afraid to sing that song.

But it seemed to make my mom happy (coz she requested it -_-), so… I guess if it makes her smile…

She gave me a big fat hug after that. :)

Altogether now……. Awwwwww.

Also seen here is Sam, who was secretly filming my little performance! Are my eyes playing tricks on me, or does he look a little watery eyed too? :P

One of my favorite parts of the night is when Sam appeared with a TV (which he lugged all the way from home) and started playing this video montage clip he made with old (embarrassing) photos he got from my mom, and the ones we took together over the years

. He narrated it with touching commentary about how I’m sucha great person (uh huh) How the people who love me will always support me in whatever I do……..  and how my ex bf was a jerk he saved me from………. ….. ….

and I almost cried…………….. 

again.

With Byrne, one of the best human beings I know, who has never failed me as a friend, ever. Don’t know what I’d do without him in my life! Thanks for always being there for me!!!!

Auntie Jackie at the glitter tattoo station proving you’re never too old to have a little fun!

Ma boys looking real handsome, all of them. So appreciative of everyone who dressed up to the nines, with blazers and all, despite it being an outdoor event with no fans. Thank gooooood the weather was merciful and agreeable – getting windier as the night progressed and no signs of rainfall.

Good to know that my guests were well entertained throughout the night thanks to all the fringe activities available!!!

Halfway through dinner, I made a little speech….

This is literally my “giving a speech” face caught in action. Hahahaha.

My guests don’t seem too amused at what I was muttering. :P I can’t remember half the nervous gibberish I said, but I thanked my guests for taking time out of a weekday to join me as I commemorate becoming an adult and “hey thanks to all the bloggers who came”, I invited mostly bloggers that night because I wanted to give a nod to my blogging career that has brought me so many opportunities to experience new things and meet new people. I will forever be grateful for that.

 I would’ve loved to invite other important people such as my cousins, high school best friends, my old favorite teacher, etc… but unfortunately, space constraints only allowed for a small and private crowd. :(

Soon, the night was coming to an end…. and then it’s cake cutting time! I was sad that everyone was about to leave, but excited to show people our latest cake creation. Really, these things are over before you know it (birthday parties) A month spent planning and in a few hours of mingling, taking photos, eating… it’s all gone! Well, I do have memories to last for a whole lifetime :)

How do you like my 4 tiered cake?! Kindly sponsored by Shiberty’s Sweets. LOL.

The face of a very happy girl that night. It was so nice to be surrounded by people who loved me!!!

I am so pleased with how my 4 tiered & over 10kg cake turned out! Spent the entire morning and afternoon decorating it together with Sam. The top tier is entirely cold, covered with 3d little spiky stars. The second tier is plain white, with a big cute bow. The third tier is covered with sugar gems, painstakingly made and stuck on one by one by yours truly……. and the bottom tier is black with gold lace banners and draping curtains! I think it’s glamorous without being too over the top (or time consuming to make :P)

Flavors of cake I’d chosen for my 21st cake: Vanilla cake with lemon & passionfruit, chocolate with peanut butter and red velvet!

World’s sexiest kiss award goes to us.
Really not sure why Sam came up and stood beside me halfway. Hello, you’re stealing my attention!!!

Because my brother and I share the same birthday on the same day and month, I invited him up to cut the cake with me! We’re 8 years apart.

Out of nowhere, ravenous barbarians appeared from behind the bushes and started attacking the cake when nobody was looking. We had to chase them off with sticks.

Presents…. my favorite part. It’s ok if you don’t attend my party, just mail me your present. LOL. I’m kidding (ya think?) My expression says: “HOW DID YOU GUYS KNOW I NEEDED NEW BRAS???”

….And then everyone went home after that.

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…Just kidding. I’m so NOT done with my birthday happenings!!!! That was just a rough skeleton for you guys to figure out what went down, in chronological order. I have A LOT more pictures to post.

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HERE ARE MY HUNDRED THANK YOUS TO EVERYONE WHO MADE ONE OF THE BEST NIGHTS OF MY LIFE POSSIBLE.

And here’s what they did to make it so damn awesome.


•••• •••• VENUE, DINNER & HOSTING:


Thanks to Moonstone‘s prime location at Mount Faber, I had the best backdrop imaginable for my party. I believe the pictures above speak for themselves!!!! Instead of a cooped up indoor event like everyone else is doing, why not have a party under the stars? If you’re looking for a place to: hold your ROM, birthday party, proposal, farewell party, D&D, private parties, romantic dates or any sort of special occasion…. you’ll LOVE Moonstone just like I did, for its charming alfresco concept dining and good food. I’ve reviewed some items from their menu before, here.

My guests finished the yummy Japanese skewers within minutes of it being served! One thing that impressed me about Moonstone is that instead of doing your usual party “buffet catering” style of serving food, leaving mass produced food to get cold while people help themselves, they insisted on having waiters to serve freshly cooked food to dining tables so that my guests could enjoy a nice hot meal of appropriate quality, a testament to the restaurant’s true standards. I honestly believe Moonstone will impress anyone who steps foot into the place, the view will take your breath away. The design of the place is understated elegance, with an open upper deck patio concept with minimalist wooden finishing.

The team and management at Moonstone are extremely helpful, flexible and friendly, which will make your event planning that much easier! A BIG BIG BIG BIG thank you to Moonstone for having all of my friends and family over at your lovely venue, and everyone couldn’t stop gushing about what a pretty sight the party was thanks to your top notch restaurant. Please call them to find out more information about holding your next important event there! You won’t be disappointed.

Level 2, The Jewel Box, 109 Mount Faber Road
Tel: +65 6276 0609
Mondays to Thursdays:
4:30pm to 11:00pm
Fridays, Saturdays, eve of Public Holidays (Closed on Sundays)
4:30pm till late
http://www.epicurean.com.sg/moonstone.html

•••• •••• GELISH MANICURE BOOTH, BIRTHDAY GELISH NAILS:

Say hi to Mabel and Christine, from The Nail Status! If you find them familiar, that’s because they have a super popular nail salon at Far East Plaza that’s packed every time I visit them. These two lovely ladies set up a manicure booth at the party, giving my guests prettified gelish nails all night long!

 Even weeks after the party, I heard good feedback from guests about how long their manis lasted! I think a manicure booth is a great idea for parties that have a surplus of women attending. It can’t possibly go wrong. They’ll appreciate having something to do. Instead of standing around doing nothing and chatting, they can get their nails done and chat simultaneously!!! It’s a refreshing change. Small talk suddenly becomes bearable. Party entertainment has never been this practical and frivolous at the same time. I approve. Your female friends will thank you later.

The Nail Status has been doing my nails for months now, and I’ve loved every single set of nails done with them. Here’s my birthday nails that I requested! Each set lasts well over a month, and I only take them off because I want a change in design!

Far East Plaza 14 Scotts Road
#04-83 Singapore 228213
Tel: 6836 2005
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/thenailstatus


•••• •••• GLITTER TATTOO BOOTH:

What’s a Glitter Glamour party without a little glitter tattoo fun?! Even though I wanted the party to have an overall elegant flair, I didn’t want it to be dead boring… and by the end of the night, more than half of my guests were covered in sparkly new tats! Sherie from Makeup Refinery customized suitable stencils just for my party!

You’d think this sort of stuff was meant for kids only… but most of my guests were older than me and more than willing to get sparkly stuff on their bodies. Suitable for any age, as long as you’re young at heart ;)

Me getting a heart shaped glitter tattoo done and looking a tad tire from running around entertaining guests all day. Sherie was very quick to do each tattoo, barely a few minutes per person, so this is especially suitable for large scale kids events!

“Makeup Refinery provides services such as:

o  Pre-Wedding Photoshoot
o  Makeover Photoshoot
o  Bachelorette and Makeover Party
o  Commercial Photoshoot (Magazine/ Editorials)
o  Prom Night, Dinner & Dance, Events Makeup
o  Runway / Fashion Shows
o  Makeup Lessons (Individual/ Group/ Corporate)

From now till 31 Dec 2014, mention “Shiberty” to receive 20% off ALL services/lessons from us!”

http://www.makeuprefinery.com/
Email: MakeupRefinery@gmail.com
Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/MakeupRefinery



•••• •••• HAIR & MAKE UP SERVICES:

Dear Marie Soh… thank you for being such a wonderful friend and an awesome make up artist!!!!!! I totally felt like a million dollars that night, all thanks to your magic touch. Thanks for making me picture perfect just for one night. She was such a sweetheart, and helped me unpack + distribute the goodie bags Maybelline sent over for my guests to take home!

I am so glad that through knowing you as a make up artist, I’ve found a new friend. Marie somehow seems to know exactly what sort of look I want to achieve without me having to elaborate too much! She takes into consideration personal style whenever she’s applying make up for somebody, to guarantee you’ll love the results no matter what. If you have a special event you need to look good for (prom, D&D, photoshoot etc)… she’s your girl!!!! :) She’s just one of the nicest person you’ll ever ever meet.

Her usual rate for a full make over (hair, make up & false lashes included) is $120, but she’s offering only $100 per makeover to my readers when you quote “Shiberty”!

Website: http://mariesoh.com
Mobile: +65 9368.4640 (9am- 5pm)


•••• •••• TABLE FLOWER CENTREPIECE & PARTY STREAMERS:

Poppy Flora Studio offers more than just flower centre pieces – they also provide event planning, decorations, and even cakes and dessert tables! You can go to them for literally everything when it comes to making an event extra special.

They were the ones who did up the whimsical looking streamers in eye-catching shades of cyan, gold, hot pink, and black, AND they did a great job with the beautiful flower centrepieces of red gerberas and dainty pink hydrangeas on every table, which made the event look ten times more elegant and vibrant instantly. My guests liked the flowers so much, they took them home!!!! Nothing adds a fancy touch to a party like some beautiful blooms, and hydrangeas are one of my favorite flowers!

I told them I wanted pops of color without it looking too tacky or loud against my general white black silver gold theme, and they accomplished just that. Thank you Sarah from Poppy Flora Studio for your help, and I won’t forget you when it’s time to do my wedding floral arrangements!!!!! ♥ You haaave to contact them for your weddings, because I’ve seen their wedding work before and I was completely blown away by how elaborate their themed work is.

http://www.poppy.com.sg/

Tel: +65 6225 8496
Email: poppy@poppy.com.sg


•••• •••• GENERAL EVENT DECORATIONS:


Vanessa and Joey from Frolic Affairs dressed up the place with little details that made all the difference to the overall outlook.

They provided fluffy pom poms, helium balloons, a glamorous red carpet for my guests to walk on, candles in a high top glass holder filled with little beads, blinking LED lights in balloons that floated in the water beside the dining tables… All I did was give them my suggestions and a themed concept to work around – and they certainly didn’t disappoint. It’s all in the details, and I love how they didn’t miss out on anything, making the party a grand affair. If you’re tired of big event planning establishments that seem to have lost that personal touch, give Vanessa or Joey a call. They would be happy to take up small projects such as personal parties at reasonable rates, making it an unforgettable one!

Contact Vanessa:  9029 2113
Contact Joey: 9856 2883

Quote “Shiberty” for 10% of all Frolic Affairs services!


•••• •••• LIVE ACOUSTIC SINGING:

You might recognize Hashy Yusof & Marc Than from “The Final 1″ singing competition that was airing on TV earlier this year! Hashy was my personal favorite to win The Final 1! There’s just this quality about her voice that is so unique and distinguishable. I could honestly listen to Hashy’s soothing vocals all day (I’ve done it before using her SoundCloud!). I’ve known Marc for many years now from an event we did a long time ago, and he’s always been a great guy, but I’d only found out about his rocker talents recently! Give the guy a mic and a guitar, and he’s unstoppable. I was super thrilled when they both agreed to perform at my birthday party. They have very different sounding voices, but with strategic harmonizing, somehow they make it work. I dunno about you, but to me, live music is just so much better than blasting from a stereo. It injects so much more life into the environment.



Check out Marc and Hashy, a new duo, HERE!!!: https://www.facebook.com/MarcXHashy


If you have an event that needs some awesome live music to pump it up, drop them a message!



•••• •••• PHOTOBOOTH, LIVE PRINTING SERVICES & ROAMING PHOTOGRAPHY:

Vilvian & Gui Jie are the masterminds behind La Novella studios. They were in charge of so many things with regards to my party, and their performance exceeded my expectations so much…. I could not have asked for better people to work with. :’)

They customized a huge and gorgeous glitter glamour themed photobooth backdrop which was exactly what I had in mind when I visualized a “Glitter Glamour” party. Shiny, fun, and of course glamorous!

They also provided unique props for people to go wacky with, and let my guests take home as many high quality prints as they wanted..

AND even did up the guest book for my guests to sign, which they totally didn’t have to!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Just one day before my party, I actually did a picnic themed photoshoot with Yina, Melissa and they all sneakily worked together to rush out the pictures (shot by Multifolds, edited by Yina and printed by La Novella) so that they could slot the prints into the guestbook and surprise me!!! :’))))

Speaking of the photo booth, I was blown away by the quality of the pictures, considering we were shooting outdoors at night the pictures turned out freaking awesome!! Since this post is SUPER long as is, I’m going to leave the photobooth pictures and the rest of the credits for another post.

Aside from event services, La Novella Studio is also a photography studio, where I took these shots at! Scratch that, they’re a total design house under one roof. They also provide: web design, outdoor photography, and more services to satisfy your creative needs!

http://lanovella.com.sg/

Eunos Techpark
60 Kaki Bukit Place
#07-16 Singapore 415979

Tel: +65 6844 8944
Email: studio@lanovella.com.sg

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In my next post… A WHOLE LOT OF PHOTOBOOTH PICTURES!!! 

And more Thank Yous to follow, because one post isn’t enough to thank everybody who made a difference that night, and to my life. See you in the next post!

xoxo,
Jess

xoxo,
Jess

Turning the big 2-1.

On the 20th of September, year 2013, I officially turned 21 years old.

I had a really wonderful party the night before, surrounded by many people I adore, held at Moonstone at Mount Faber (check out the twinkling lights behind me! we had an unparalleled view of Sentosa the whole night under the stars)…. a pretty unforgettable night that marked an important milestone in my life. I can’t wait to share pictures of the party with you guys. It was Glitter Glamour themed and everyone looked SO fabulous!!! That night made me realize.. Jesus I sure do have a lot of good looking and nice people in my life. Haha. Most of all, they were all gathered there just for me, to celebrate my birthday, because I requested for their presence. They made me feel so special and blessed. :’)

However, more about my party in a separate blog entry when I get the photos from friends and photographers.. (sorry to be such a tease!) Today, I would like to talk about actually turning 21 years old.  Dear blog readers… my virtual friends.. I know some of you literally watched me grow up. It always makes me smile when somebody comments “I’ve been reading your blog since you were in secondary school!”, that was a long time ago. You’re all like the best friends I wish I had. You’re always here to listen to what I have to say, no matter what it’s about. I know I’m no longer a “sweet young thing” who enjoyed blogging about bitchy controversial topics or posting up bikini photoshoot pictures, so my relevancy level naturally dropped a lot, but still there are people who are interested in the normal life I’ve now adjusted to. The older I get, the less I blog about my personal life events. It’s not that I don’t want to share them with you people. It’s because I am no longer a bored student with hours and hours of free time on my hands. Time that I should have spent studying, I actually spent blogging instead! Wish I could do the same when it comes to work, but well, I’m 21 years old now and if I don’t work, I would have no money to live on. I haven’t relied on my parents for my living expenses for a long time now, and since November last year, I also moved out of my mum’s house and started renting my own place with my boyfriend. So yeah, I’ve got bills to pay, including the roof over my head. To tell you the truth, I’ve felt older than 21 since forever. I feel like an old soul. In fact, personality / character aside, everyone thinks I look like 25. Not sure if that’s a good thing but it doesn’t bother me though, because when I was 16 people already thought I was 25. Anyway. Instagram has become my main platform now (because it’s so easy to update!) but my blog will always have the biggest of my heart. I never thought I’d be blogging for as long as I have. Blogging has brought me so many life changing opportunities, events and opportunities… to try new things, to go to greater heights and to meet amazing people. For that, every single day I am thankful.

Contrary to popular belief, I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth. I never had an easy life, and I still don’t have an easy life (despite what it may look like because I know bloggers get a lot of “free” shit but it’s not like we don’t work hard for them!). I grew up experiencing an extremely difficult childhood, things I do not even wish on my worst enemy (actually I don’t have enemies, people I dislike do not deserve space in my brain). What sort of horrible things could have possibly happened, you may wonder? Well since I’m planning on giving a truthful account of my life story in a nutshell right now, I might as well give you a rough sketch of the full picture. One of the earliest memories I have of my life was my parents screaming at each other and flinging objects around when I was probably 3 years old. Daddy and Mommy were never around much. Eventually, Dad just stopped coming around completely. Mom was always at work and seemed stressed out 99% of the time, and the only other person in my life was an elder brother who was 8 years older and growing up much quicker than I was, thus he wasn’t interested in playing with me either. Actually he used to spray perfume in my face for fun and knocked me on the head when I asked for the remote control to watch cartoons. So I guess it’s safe to assume I was a pretty lonely kid. Yeah, lonely, I was. I didn’t hang out with cousins / neighbours / family friends like a normal kid would. Don’t ask me why, I was too young to really remember stuff or make any decisions.

When I entered primary school, I thought I was going to make friends, and life would be less lonely. But turns out, everyone in school pretty much hated me. I guess I wasn’t very pretty?… And apparently, I was also a bitch. Yes, I was a bitch at 9 years old. LOL. I know this because I was taunted and called names everyday, names like “Jiak Sai Ge” or “Bicycle” instead of Jessica. Jiak Sai means literally to eat shit in Hokkien. Or is it Teochew? Ok anyway you get the picture. Oh, another one of my endearing nicknames was “San ba”, which means “Bitch” in Chinese. Pretty intense shit went on in my Primary School. I don’t know why people think children are angels. Children above 6 years old are devils. They’re little parcels of evilness. I was so much worse a person as a child than I am now. Back then I would torture insects for fun. Nowadays I cringe at killing an ant. And devils went to my school. I’m convinced I was the most unlikable person on earth because they would do unimaginable things to get to me. Aside from the usual backstabbing, taunting, name-calling, rumor-making….. I vaguely recall a pretty horrific incident in school. It went something like this: I borrowed someone’s colorful crayons before recess time. It was a fancy box of crayons that everyone in class went Ooooh and Ahhh over. I made sure I returned it to the owner’s table before I left to have my meal during recess. When I got back to the classroom, the kids that didn’t like me all had this smirk on their face. I could sense that something was wrong, but they were always plotting against me anyway, so I tried not to think too much of it (but I was already panicking inside my head). To my utmost horror, the girl who lent her crayons to me actually told the teacher that she LOST her crayons, because somebody took them. My then teacher addressed the class very seriously and told the thief to own up to their mistake now before it was too late. I started breaking out in cold sweat because it was a major FuckMyLife moment. I knew 100% I’d put it back in the right place, who could have taken it? If they don’t find it soon, people are going to think I took it. I looked around and thought to myself, “It must’ve been them. They must’ve taken it to make me look like I stole it, because the last person who had it was me.” A couple of minutes went past, and my teacher lost her patience by the second. She demanded that everyone opened their bag to show that they weren’t hiding the stolen box of crayons inside it. And would you fucking believe it? When it was my turn to empty out my bag, the fucking box of fucking stupid colorful happy looking crayons were sitting there, staring me in the face. Stupid fucking crayons. Stupid fucking classmates. 11 years later, I still get worked up when I talk about it. When I looked up at my classmates, everyone was staring at me with the most disapproving, judgemental look in their eyes. I protested and told my teacher that it wasn’t me, but even the teacher didn’t buy my story because well even teachers didn’t like me at all (seriously my life sucked). Whenever there was trouble in class, it was always my fault. This was just one out of the many, MANY awful things that happened in school. Who could have known that 10 year old children could be so scheming, so ruthless? I was so depressed, that many days out of a week I came home crying to my mother, shouting “I WANT TO DIE.”

“I don’t know if you’ve ever felt like that. That you wanted to sleep for a thousand years. Or just not exist. Or just not be aware that you do exist. Or something like that. I think wanting that is very morbid, but I want it when I get like this. That’s why I’m trying not to think. I just want it all to stop spinning.”

I contemplated suicide and dying a lot when I was younger. I had no friends, no family, nothing positive I could remember at all. The only thing I had in my life was school, and that made me more miserable than ever. I couldn’t concentrate on my school work and teachers were anything but encouraging. They seemed all too happy to scold me or punish me for things I may not have even done. I felt stupid when I couldn’t finish my homework in time because the environment at home was not conducive for studying at all, so eventually I stopped doing homework altogether. I don’t remember anything to smile about except the rare occasions I did art and read books.

“It’s strange because sometimes, I read a book, and I think I am the people in the book.”

Those two things made me happy, because I could lose myself and be transported into another world, one where things weren’t so difficult. Luckily for me, eventually I joined the choir, and that took a huge load off my shoulders. My choir teacher was one of the very few people in school who liked me, and liked me she did, because I remember her always getting me to stand up and sing for everyone, and calling me the “reigning queen” in choir class and that made me oh-so-happy and a little bit more confident of myself, because I hardly ever received compliments, and every time I did, I would remember it. That was the only saving grace of any self-worth I had left. Of course, the other kids wouldn’t accept me being praised and turned “reigning queen” into “raining queen” and that was another one of my nicknames. Ah, those kids. Those bloody kids. In case you couldn’t already tell, this is the story about how I got bullied in school, to the point where I had to see a counseller for child depression.  At one point, I told myself, “FUCK THIS. Fuck all of you. I’m shutting myself out.” And that was the moment I decided I didn’t know how to feel happiness.

I may not remember all their names, faces or what exactly happened that day. But I’ll always remember how they made me feel. Kids who had trouble at home found comfort in school, when they have fun with their friends. Kids who hated school sought solace at home where they could be left alone. Me? Things at home were a downright mess and we actually lost the home I grew up in after a few years, so we had to move in with one of my mum’s friend who agreed to let us stay at their home for free. But what my mum and her friend didn’t know is that the parents of this said friend-of-mum’s would abuse me when she wasn’t around. The mother would abuse me verbally and mentally, always putting me down, insulting me and getting me to do stupid shit for her as though I was her maid like mop her table and fetch things for her like a dog. If I would refuse, she would scold me endlessly and complain about me to my mother. The father, on the other hand, would abuse me physically, in ways I really don’t think I should begin describing on my blog…… because some things are…. best not shared with the internet. Let’s just say I was never the same again after that…. Keep in mind all of this was happening concurrently with the bullying going on at school. It took me many years to get over it.

“So, I guess we are who we are for alot of reasons. And maybe we’ll never know most of them. But even if we don’t have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them.”

When I was about 11 years old, I discovered the internet. My life was changed forever, for the better. I started making friends online on forums, and spent much of my time playing games and chatting with people. Of course, I never told them I was eleven. Everyone believed that I was Jessica Lo (without the H, LOL), 19, from California. I guess I’ve always been rather eloquent (no shame in admitting what’s true!), especially in writing, so that wasn’t so hard to believe. Back in the day, we didn’t have broadband, only dial-up. I really pissed my parents off when I racked up $1000 in internet bills for A MONTH’S usage. That’s how addicted I was. It was nice being able to converse with people online because they didn’t know who I was. They didn’t give me a hard time, and they were there when I needed somebody to talk to. I guess we all needed somebody to talk to me. It was like books, but better because it interacted with you! While. My eyes were opened to the world out there. My grasp of the English language and level of social maturity also improved a whole lot after I started speaking to a lot of 20+ year old Americans (as opposed to chatting with my other 12 year old Singaporean friends).

So the next few years of my life went by really quickly… It always does when you spend a lot of time on the computer, doesn’t it? I entered high school as a super-geek (think: glasses. greasy hair. english speaking. loves books. always raises hands to answer teachers questions. no friends. super mega loser) but after a couple of months, things quickly changed. I somehow made friends with some of the most popular (notorious?) girls in school even though they totally hated me at first (??? How’d we end up being best friends remains a mystery till this very day). By popular I don’t necessarily mean the most well-liked people in school (HAHAH sorry girls but you know we were bitches. Fabulous bitches) everyone seemed to know who they were! They were the sort of girls who when they walked past, you could tell people were looking at them. And eventually, people started noticing me too. People whom I didn’t know, knew my name. Wow. FINALLY. That was a nice change. I did anything I could to fit in. I just wanted to be anything but the wallflower I thought I was destined to be. But I’m sure more than a few people noticed what a sore thumb I was. I stood out from the rest in a very awkward way. Maybe my Hokkien vulgarities weren’t convincing enough because it had an angmoh slang to it. It’s funny how we started being friends, actually. We were having a class camp and I was trying to sleep, then this noisy girl called Jasmine and her friends JUST WOULDN’T STOP LAUGHING. I re-iterated many times, “If you all don’t shut up / stop talking / go to sleep I’m going to tell the teacher right now okay!!!!” OMG that was how annoying I was. I started reading books less and tried to be less of a smart ass. I went from always raising my hands in class to falling asleep in class. I got rid of my greasy centre parting loser haircut and layered my hair just like how every ah lian did. I wore ankle socks, folded my skirt, and picked up Hokkien vulgarities. We had a lot of fun together and often laughed until our tummies ached or until our stomachs hurt. They started out hating me, but ended up loving me. Awww.

“There’s nothing like deep breaths after laughing that hard. Nothing in the world like a sore stomach for the right reasons.” 


Suddenly, I was officially in the cool crowd. We did a lot of crazy things in high school together. We skipped classes all the fucking time to do the randomest things like making a ruckus in open air carparks, drawing offensive words on each other’s hands in colorful markers, attempting to smoke, vandalizing playgrounds, shoplifting (hey I’m not proud of it but we all have a past right?) and sometimes terrorizing other people. I tried not to partake in taunting other people too much (note: TRIED) because I know how it feels like to be bullied. You could say this was the “high” point of my life. Primary school was a low, this was a high. But just because I got “high” (literally) doesn’t mean things were actually going well. It was still terrible, in fact. I would stay out all night getting up to mischief, and not tell my mum where I was. My mother was appalled by my new found rebellious behaviour and threatened to disown me I began spiraling out of my control and my grades dipped to an all-time-low, and if it wasn’t for my teacher Mr Yeo who brought me back down to earth, I don’t know how long I could continue floating around for. Mr Yeo could tell that things at home were really messed up and started reaching out to me in ways no other teacher had ever done. When I stopped coming for classes, he knocked on my house door instead, not giving up on me even when I pushed him away. I owe so much to him, for bailing me out whenever I got into trouble and for being the reason why I was not expelled from school when I was 15. High school really was a whirlwind. So many experiences in such a short amount of time. I met my ex-boyfriend, fell in love, then fell out of love. A lot of crying was involved. Coz when you’re fifteen and somebody tells you they love, you’re gonna believe them.

“We accept the love we think we deserve.”

Not all was fine and dandy throughout my four whole years with my friends, of course. During my last year, I fell out big time with my clique after I started blogging more often and drifting away from them (I guess the popularity got to my head) and they hated me so much, they actually wanted to pound me into a pulp right before my O’levels began, threatening to break my arm so that I couldn’t sit for my written paper. I was literally outnumbered in a dark corner (1 of me and many of them), surrounded by really angry people who wanted to tear me apart. (I have a knack for making people dislike me it seems) At that moment… I thought I was doomed. I could see the hate in their eyes. And I wonder how people who spent 4 years of their lives together could let it amount to this. But well, it didn’t happen in the end…. (I knew you guys wouldn’t hurt me *weak smile*) and today we are friends again. Yeah, my life really is VERY dramatic. I scored really terribly for my O’levels, by the way. I walked out of my Chinese paper halfway and fell asleep during my Mathematics paper after scribbling some smiley faces. What a failure. I thought my life was over after getting above 20 points for my O’levels and I didn’t know what I was going to do. I had just broken up with my boyfriend of 2 years, lost my high school friends that I shared some of my best life memories with, and scored disgustingly shitty points for my most important examination of my life. I hit a new “low” point in my life.

“Things change. And friends leave. Life doesn’t stop for anybody.”

To people who are awaiting your O level results, or who are taking it soon or feeling bad about your grades… it really isn’t everything. As long as you’re smart, resourceful, lucky, talented, passionate, driven or at least ONE of these things, you’ll make it somewhere. Somewhere is better than nowhere.

Fast forward a few more years… I went to take a private diploma in MDIS, met a boy named Sam, grew up, started up a cake making business out of passion, had a few cute babies I didn’t tell my blog readers of (just kidding. wait, or am I? :P) and now I’m 21 years old, sitting here, typing this.

Despite how my traumatic early years could’ve damn well ruined me for good, I am thankful to have gone through those experiences because it has ultimately shaped and molded me into the person that I am today. I picked myself off the ground, dusted the dirt off and went about on my way until I got to where I wanted to be. If I had not gone through such alarmingly shitty phases in my life, I wouldn’t have tried so hard to turn things around for myself. Because of all the bullying and torment I went through, I now take shit from nobody and put people in their place when they try to step all over me. One of the best feelings of turning 21 so far is the clear realization that.. Hey. I really do like who I am now. It feels good to be able to say this about myself. I believe I’m a good person, in a good place, doing good things. It’s not like I am anything near perfect, but I try to learn from my mistakes (most of the time) so I don’t beat myself up too much over the wrong doings I’ve committed. After battling with depression for a few years, I’ve now near mastered the life skill of always trying look on the bright side of life, while staying hungry for newer and better things, which pushes me towards my goals more. Do I have any regrets? Like Frankie would sing… Regrets; I’ve had a few, but then again, too few to mention. Life has gotten increasingly better throughout the years, and although life is not necessarily a bed of roses, making the best out of what I have everyday seems to be working for me. Am I a successful person? Well, compared to people who are representing their country in sports, winning Nobel prizes, earning millions when they’re in their twenties….. I’m not one of them. But I read somewhere that doing what you like is freedom, and liking what you do is happiness.

So at the end of the day, I can at least say I have both freedom and happiness in my life, two things I dared not believe I deserved barely years ago. That’s good enough for me.



“This moment will just be another story someday.”

Thank you for being a part of this story.

xoxo,
Jess

xoxo,
Jess
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