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Bamboo Bridge at Bagan Fajar, Tangerang : Encouraging Explorations of New Places

25 August 2015 – 12:45 pm |

This is us, walking down a super long (and old) bamboo bridge at Desa Muara, Tangerang, West Java.
It’s called ‘Bagan Fajar’, and the bridge is usually used by fishermen to go further towards the sea …

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Anya – The ‘Composer’

24 April 2011 | Posted in: Daily, Inspirational | 3 Comments

I’ve been randomly spring cleaning our home for the past two weeks.

And as I cleared stacks of stuff here and there, I found this (amongst many other scribbles, drawings and stories!)

I didn’t know when she wrote it, nor what caused her to write it.

And so I casually asked Anya what ‘the writing’ was, and she (shyly) said that it was a song that she wrote.

I asked if she had a tune in mind when she wrote it, and she nodded.

She somehow felt shy about singing the tune out for me (or anyone) though, and so I didn’t press her for it.

[Nor did I laugh or make much 'comments' on it - for I knew it could potentially discourage her from continuing with what she had explored and started on her own]

I did tell her though that there are many ways to thank God for the blessings we have received, and one of it is through songs, like this one.

And she smiled.

I have no idea what she’ll become when she grows up, nor the kind of life that she’ll have some ten, twenty or thirty years from today. My prayer is for her to continually explore her God-given talents, for God to use all our children in His works to glorify Him and to bless others, and for God to give the needed wisdom to us both as parents, so we can raise our little ones according to His ways – because without His help, we’re completely unable to.

It’ll be a tough challenge. And, an honour, at the same time.

Good Friday – The Cross

22 April 2011 | Posted in: Inspirational | No Comment

The Cross was placed where there was no miracle,
but the cross showed us the greatest miracle.

The Cross was placed where there was no light,
but the cross manifested the greatest light.

The Cross was placed where there was no self-defense,
but the cross manifested the greatest power.

The Cross was placed where there was great folly,
but the cross manifested the greatest wisdom in history.

[Extracted from 'The Three Crosses', by Rev. DR. Stephen Tong]

“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.’”
(Romans 5:6-8)

To those who share the same faith as me and my family, may you have a blessed Good Friday today, a day when we all are reminded of God’s great love for us sinners and of God’s ultimate victory over the power of death and sin.

Parenting : One of the (many) Questions I AVOID Asking Kids

20 April 2011 | Posted in: Inspirational, Parenting | 10 Comments

When it comes to conversations with kids (ie. With my own AND with all other children), there are certain questions which I personally avoid.

My reasons? Well, it’s because I feel the questions will encourage the child to think / feel / view something in a way that they shouldn’t.

It’s kinda hard to explain without any concrete examples, … so let me share with you one question which I personally will never ask any children yeah.

(Actually, I won’t ask adults this question too).

Personally, I won’t ask anything that’s along the lines of:

‘Who do you love more, … your Daddy or your Mommy?’

‘Who do you think love/like/spoil you more, … your Dad or your Mom?’

‘Who do you like better, … your grandpa (Dad’s father) or your Gong-Gong (Mom’s father)?’

‘Who do you think is cuter, … baby A or baby B?’

‘Who do you love the best, … your sister or your brother?’

And here are my reasons for not wanting to ask such questions:

> I feel such a question (indirectly) puts children in a position that encourages them to unconsciously make an unnecessary (‘unhealthy’?) choice between two options.

I mean, it’s NOT like we’re asking them if they like bananas more than they like apples, if they like red colour better than blue colour, or if they like the story of ‘Cinderella’ better than ‘Red Riding Hood’ (which obviously are totally okay)

To me, such a question in a way encourages the child to ‘favour’ one relationship over another.

> Children should love both parents (at least, they should learn / be encouraged to love both parents equally). And I personally feel all children should NOT be made to question, compare then decide which parent loves them ‘more’ (because in other words, we’re asking them to decide which parent actually loves them ‘less’)

[Note: Even if a child somehow feels one parent loves him more than the other parent, I still feel such a thought should not be emphasised nor further developed]

> I personally feel children should be encouraged to love all their siblings too, and not asked to pick one over another, ie. regardless of whether the question was jokingly asked or not.

> Children should not be encouraged to judge / decide which person/friend/cousin is ‘cuter’, or ‘smarter’, or ‘richer’, or ‘better’ too. They should instead be encouraged to see other people in terms of their strengths (and not their weaknesses), and to value relationships and friendships.

Anyway, it’s a personal thing.

Like, I always tell Anya and Vai that Mommy and Daddy love them both equally, how they both need to always love their family and look out for each other as siblings, and how they need to learn to respect other people as well.

But then of course, through the years, we’ve encountered others who asked such questions to our children (in a joking manner usually). Such a situation is inevitable and I’m personally fine with it (ie. We can’t filter everything that takes place in our kids’ lives). When such a situation happens and we’re around to hear it being asked to the kids, I’d smile and tell the kids how we BOTH love them, and subtly distract or divert the conversation.

I guess, at the end of the day, what’s more important is the kind of values / principles / teachings that we parents instill in our children and how we ourselves ‘walk our talk’ and learn to continually be a living example to our little ones?

Care to share your thoughts on this one?

Pregnancy : My 33 Weeks Updates!

18 April 2011 | Posted in: Pregnancy & Babyhood | 5 Comments

[Wearing my maternity support belt. Click HERE to read my review on Facebook]

> My Doc sort of gave me his gender prediction, BUT right until today, each time we had a scan, it’s NEVER clear if it’s a boy or a girl. It was either blocked, or sort of … fuzzy. So, as much as I would LOVE to know, I’m ready for either a boy or a girl. Just as long as baby is healthy and well =)

> I’ve been telling people that I’m due next month (ie. May). If it’s a complete 40-week pregnancy, actually I’d be due in the first week of June though!

You see, Anya was born when I was 38 weeks pregnant. Vai was born at 37.5 weeks. So I really am hoping that baby #3 is also due around the same time =)

(If I could choose, I personally would prefer having the baby at 37 weeks, than at 40 weeks. The weather’s been so warm lately, I do feel exhausted easier, and I find myself needing to sit straight up in order to breathe properly. Sleeping at night is not that convenient when the belly is big. I mean, I can’t imagine how much bigger (and uncomfortable) one would get if baby still prefers to be inside at Week 40!)

> Aching wrists and index finger, thanks to water retention.

You’d think that ‘water retention‘ only makes pregnant women’s feet look SO swollen and huge! But noooo … apparently now I know that water retention can also hurt my wrists (without making them look swollen!) I mean, I’d wake up in the morning and my right wrist would hurt. And when it happens (luckily it’s not THAT bad everyday), I can’t even lift a glass of water with my right hand.

This btw didn’t happen when I was pregnant with Anya and Vai.

[Waiting for the kids to finish their water and sand play at the beach]

> Conflict between my ‘nesting instinct‘ and ‘physical exhaustion’

I must say, it’s very different now that I’m pregnant with baby #3, compared to … say, when I was pregnant with Anya, my firstborn.

When I was pregnant with Anya, there’re no older siblings to care for and I had much better rest time. And now that I’m pregnant with baby #3, it’s much tougher to slow down.

People (and those pregnancy email bulletins) would tell me to ‘rest more’, especially now that I’m in my third trimester. Hmm, but with endless housework to clear, school-going kids to send and pick up (and coach), and not to mention a whole lot of other things to do everyday, it’s hard to simply … rest (as much as I’d love to, I mean).

[No, I'm not a 'neat freak', so as much as I'd like to clear my housework chores, they're NEVER cleared, hehe]

There are tonnes of things that I hope I could do (in order to get my home ready for a newborn), BUT these days I’d wake up feeling … tired. And, errr … I haven’t even done anything.

Oh well. Anyway.

Having shared all that, I AM really grateful that this pregnancy has been relatively smooth sailing so far. That I’ve been healthy and well throughout this pregnancy too.

Can’t ask for more.

“Adventure ahead … If more rest time is not possible, I’m asking God for extra energy needed… And somehow I know His grace will be sufficient for us … ”
[As shared on my Facebook status a few days ago]

Why Grand Theft Auto (GTA) Should NOT be Played, Especially by Children

12 August 2015 | Posted in: Parenting | 2 Comments
grand theft auto v

Let’s ask ourselves these three questions:
1. Do my children play video games, or any kind of games online, and freely access the internet?
2. Do I know the kind of games they play (on their own …

Being in the Outdoors : Life Lessons for City Kids

13 July 2012 | Posted in: Parenting, Places to Visit | 2 Comments
cijeruk forest kids

The other weekend we drove out of the city of Jakarta for a few hours and checked out Cijeruk, West Java!
We’re there for three days.
I LOVE the fact that we finally could be away from …

5 Inspirational Quotes on Father’s Day!

18 June 2012 | Posted in: Inspirational, Parenting | 2 Comments
daddy hero

Nobody says that being a Dad is easy.
Juggling work and family is tough.
To wives,
we may not agree with some of the things Daddies do (like, letting the kids go to bed without washing up / …

Missing my twosome moments

2 August 2006 | Posted in: Marriage & Relationships | No Comment

I was browsing my old photo collection and saw some of our old traveling ones. Aahh … it brought back sooo many sweet memories.
Frankly right now, with a toddler and a newborn coming very very …

The facts of being married

26 February 2005 | Posted in: Marriage & Relationships | No Comment

This was Wilson’s conversation with the guy who cut his hair the other day:
Guy: Oh, so you’re married already? *really suprised* You would’nt have done it so early if you had the choice, would you?
Wilson: …

Book : First-time Mom

2 May 2008 | Posted in: Marriage & Relationships, Parenting, Video | One Comment

Here’s one parenting book I’d like to recommend today.
First-time Mom, by Dr. Kevin Leman.
Getting off on the right foot – from birth to first grade
After a friend of mine shared how insightful the book …