Category Archives: family

Things that make you Cry and Laugh at the same time

One thing is life for sure.

I hope your life is funny, sunny, bitter and sweet at the same time. That’s a life worth living.

But other than Life, there are moments littered in our every day that possess the same powerful effect, that could make you laugh and cry at the same time:

A Good Read. A book that speaks to you through its volumes of a past experience, a deep ache within. Or maybe one that offers a window to someone else’s life, a life so helpless and fragile, and yet you could not reach out to help in any way. You laugh because you can imagine its simple sweetness, and you cry for all the unfairness suffered.

A Decade-old Photo. When you see your smooth, oval face and the spotless laugh that knew no troubles; oh how you hate and love at the same time! Love for the moment you had, and hate that it is long over. Pleaseeee get over the bitterness and be grateful that you were enriched by such beautiful experiences! (:

A Cup of Coffee. You could be having it alone, or perhaps as a friendly brew with an old acquaintance; anyhow, caffeine is a great brain stimulant, and at times it could work just as well even for the tear ducts! Say if you were sharing a private joke (even just to yourself) and you burnt your tongue while chuckling quietly.

Very likely.

An Unwilling Lesson Learnt. That was what happened to me today. I was bringing my parents out for a day trip, our usual food-hunt, and I envisioned a relaxing stroll after a delicious meal.

To my own grievous fault (heh), it became a stressful roundabout walk, long hours of getting lost, and a set of tired and grumpy parents, carrying two pairs of feet that were more tired and grumpy than anything ):

It was really my fault. Not only did I walk too fast, I was way too impatient in finding my way around, indecisive about what to do, and too stubborn to take any advice.

You know I thought I changed! I used to be a panicky drowning-duck-in-the-pond type of person, and I really, really thought I shook that off already. I thought that I have learnt to carry myself in a confident, relaxed way. I was so wrong! I am still the worried little girl trying so hard to prove myself. 

After all these years, I am still the same in so many ways. What a downer.

I guess one improvement is that I don’t sulk out loud and pretend nothing’s wrong anymore. I shed a few quiet tears, and as I thought back about the frantic walking we did, I actually managed to laugh out. AT myself.

There you go, crying and laughing at the same time!

How could I be so wrong, thinking that I’m all good and grown now. How you surprise me, oh G.

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A shining light

Happie Neu Ear and belated merry Christmas!!

Live a little, love more, and have lots of blessings.
I wish that you are a light for others, and for yourself,

xoxo,
G

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GJB: Girls Jump Boracay/ Short Letter from a Filipina Island

BORACAY, 22DEC — We are waiting in the Kalibo airport for our flight to arrive. It is a long wait, but not so tiresome, because I have pretty memories of our stay in Boracay to play out in my mind for amusement. I just took a picture of everyone eagerly facing the magic gates, anticipating the moment they could burst through them!

Sleepiness overwhelms me; I shall stop writing now.

I am so tired already. We are at the Manila airport waiting for our homebound tiger airways flight. Despite my grouchy sticky dirty state, there are several things I want to be grateful for today:

I want to be grateful for the delicious, full breakfast I had. It is positively one of the best ever 🙂 With runny omelette, crispy toast and quality butter, things couldn’t get better; but then I had fresh milk too! My prayers for fresh milk just a day ago was nicely answered.

I am grateful for the ferry ride to Caticlan Jetty being fast and comfortable. Transition from our hotel to Caticlan was almost seamless. We caught a reasonably-priced trishaw the moment we stepped out of Crystal Sand, and easily got our ferry tickets for Caticlan without queuing, and slipped into the ferry within a matter of seconds! A few minutes later the ferry was nice and full and before we knew it we were already chugging away from Boracay.

Bye bye, island of thousand gorgeous sunsets, and beautiful island hopping and lovely sand and sun. I will always remember you, and the brilliant pictures we took together. There are so many more things to experience there, I wish I will have the chance to go there again with Joel!

I am extremely grateful for the fact that our flight from Kalibo to Manila was only delayed by an hour. When we arrived at Manila we had to take a taxi to the international airport, and once again, I am ever glad that we got a great cab driver to bring us on the quickest and cheapest route to Terminal 1! Phew.

I am especially glad that we arrived at the airport in time, and checked-in alright for our homebound flight. I felt that so many things could go wrong throughout the day; for those things that did, and I am still so glad that we still made it here in one piece.

SINGAPORE, 23DEC — and now I am back at home, it is 3am and I am JUST SO GLAD TO SEE THE SILLY FLOWER PRINTS ON MY SILLY BED. I missed you!!!!

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Deepavali in sanskrit literally means “Row of Lights”. This Festival of Light is celebrated by Hindus as an important day that marks the coming of the new year, the triumph of good over evil, light over darkness. Hindus would wear new clothes, gather with their family and have goodies and sweets together 🙂

and it is a public holiday for me. YAAAY!!! Just to let you know, we are celebrating this festival (and public holiday) together with people in Sri Lanka, Malaysia, India, South Africa, Trinidad and Mauritius, just to name a few!

Deepavali

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Room with a view

(An excerpt from my “Kiehls” diary)

21 August 2011. Happy anni[versary] to to Joel & me!! (: It’s the 21st again!! I am still using the acne cream and it is working so well that it is scary. it showed me all the white heads i didn’t even know i had.

Anyway i was standing at my living room in the dark, sneaking a pineapple tart because i was slightly ashamed of myself, and i looked out of the window and i saw a view. a narrow view constricted by neighbouring flats. a small view of a corner of someone’s life (mine) overlooking a parking lot, another flat and the road just beyond.

But when i turned my head higher, I saw the sky. it was about 12.30am and it was dark, but not quite fully black. I could see the clouds, dark red in colour.

it made me realize how we always looked at our own life from a narrow window. we think that all our misfortunes are so important, our joys are so important, that we are so important.

but we forget that [the] view from our window is just one of the many, many window [views] out there. we are small and powerless. but that isn’t depressing – it is actually so exciting that the world is so beautiful, mysterious and big. it will be a life’s adventure to experience everything.

and most of all, i feel comforted that there is a living God, who sees from all angles from all windows. I know, you think he is ignoring you because he has bigger things to do, but that’s not true. he is already working his magic in our lives.

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Happy Moonie Fest

Happy Mid Autumn Festival!

The mid autumn festival marks the autumn equinox, hence its name. It is also a time of harvest in most parts of China, and the people would offer up their fruits of labour, apples peaches pears grapes melons oranges, to worship the moon. This festival has been celebrated by the Chinese for a long time, since the Shang Dynasty from 2000BC-1066BC. It falls on the fifteenth day of the month when the moon is at its fullest, and people would have dinner together, and admire the moon while having sweet snacks and Chinese tea, to wish sweet blessings of family reunion.

A special food during the mid autumn festival is the mooncake. The mooncake is a sweet, dense cake, filled with a paste made from melon seeds, almond seeds, lotus or bean puree and orange zest.It is also round, to imitate the fullness of the moon. A salted egg yolk is traditionally embedded in the centre, and it is baked till the skin turns a light golden brown. The mooncake skin is embossed with traditional symbols of the festival. It taste gorgeous. Truly.

Family friends and relatives would give boxes of mooncakes to each other during the festival, to give well-wishes of family reunion.

Today, many Chinese celebrate the mooncake festival not only by eating mooncakes, but also playing with lanterns and recently sparklers too! Mid autumn festival in Singapore is a festive light-up. Chinatown, Clarke Quay and Marina Bay are lit up with decorative lantern floats and displays to commemorate the festival. Around the neighbourhoods children carrying lanterns dominate the playgrounds and parks. Most of them would sport electric lanterns that emit multicolour lights or even carry a tune, while more composed ones carried the traditional, delicate paper lanterns. Some children may even choose to play with just candles or sparklers.

When I was a kid i did them all with my brother. I had paper lanterns which caught fire, electric lanterns in the sharp of a rabbit, and boxes and boxes of candles which I stuck in the sand pit in the playground. I played with whistling sparklers too! They made my eyes dazzle.

On my way home from work earlier I saw several children who were out early parading their lanterns. Most of them carried electric ones.

I know it is quite a stick-in-the-mud of me to say this, but the paper lanterns definitely rocks much better. It is absolutely fantastic when it catches flames!

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Something important to hang on to

We need an anchor in life, so that we will not be swept away by the undercurrents.

What is yours?

I would build mine around my passion for books, reading, philosophy, family, great ol’ friends, and nice nibbles (: Oh and beautiful clothes! (we have to wear something, righttt?)

To top it all, freshly baked bread are the mainstays of a wholesome, delicious and blissful life! Yums Yums!

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Remember Me


Let me tell you a true story.

An old woman in her 80s recently fell ill, and was admitted to the hospital. During an examination, she was informed by the doctor that she might have contracted the lung cancer.

At that time she had two choices to make.  She could either go for an examination, find out about her condition, or do nothing at all.

She thought to herself: I am already old and feeble. My time is almost up, undergoing treatment cannot let me live much longer. I doubt I even have the strength to see myself through any intensive therapy.

After careful consideration, she made a brave decision not to pursue further treatment. A few days later she was discharged from the hospital.

As the days waned, so did her strength. But a curious thing happened. Though her physical body became more frail, her spirit grew stronger. Beneath the impassive exterior, she was starting to prepare for her final departure.

Memories of the past she never knew she cherished came to mind. She thought of how she used to cook some favourite home dishes for the family decades ago. She remembered how her husband would accompany her to grill cuttlefish snacks over charcoal fire. With the help of the maid, she did those things again.

The family noticed her strange actions, and it dawned on them that she was dying. Knowing that she loved gardening, they brought her to a flower shop. There she said:

“Pick a flower you like, and I will buy it for you. I do not have the energy to care for it anymore, so you shall do it on my behalf.”

The purple orchid represents her simple wish to be remembered.

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Fly away, lil Lamb

Mamma is like a lamb, and today she grew cream-coloured wings. This was the outfit we chose for this hot, hot day.

And boy how I wish I had put in just as much thought into the itinerary as I did for the clothes! I thought it was smart of me to make sure we stayed nice and cool in the shopping centre. My nice plan practically turned inside out.
Like a girl caught wearing a reversed shirt, we ended up topsy turvy dizzy and sizzled in the heat of the situation. Gahh!!
I curse human heat. It was The Sunday and every Tampinesian was at the shopping centres to be seen and heard (I heard them loud and clear, I tell you). It was Crazily Congested on the shopping floors; there were human traffic jams at the crucial bends before and after boarding the escalators.
Altogether it left us with a curious “Sunny” effect – we became hot, bothered and dazed. Now I am damn sure that at Tampines is where the sun never sets.
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