Sunday, December 25, 2005

Summary 2005

A slight delay in delivering this journal, partly because I am consolidating some thoughts of this year, coupled with the festive season, and the fact that my pc went through another challenge again yesterday, the eve before Christmas. I am really thankful that I can still manage to get it to work today (after I prayed and spoke to my pc nicely, it actually worked!). My pc, please endure with me for another month, until I back up all my files and am blessed by the Lord with a new laptop, thanks pc, for serving me well these last 3 years.

Chapter 1
Finally bought and move into my new flat, perhaps this can be considered the main event of the year. Never really like responsibility, but still I am learning to adapt. Yet I am thankful to the Lord for my cosy little abode.

Chapter 2
Been a year since I got to know my new home group, and am really thankful for them, as I enjoyed their company greatly, hope they felt the same. For the new year ahead, I hope to have more time with all my "old" friends. Suddenly, I realised that I was so caught up with my daily life and work, that I actually missed their company for the past few years. Pals, forgive me, I know you will. Really looking forward to catching up with you all soon!

Chapter 3
It's been a year since I came over to a new team in my job. Being pretty apprehensive at first, with an initial fear of having to compromise and conform with my peers who work so hard and so late, and of sacrificing much of my own time other than proper working hours and weekends in office, this proves to be on the contrary, all thanks to Papa God. It is a miracle, and in fact, time seems to have multiplied unconsciously! Miracle does happen, for He stretched the day just for me! (Not that I have less things to do I believe?!) Work is supposed to be fun after all, not a chore, anyway!

Chapter 4
In the midst of the busy schedule, home, work and church, the Lord sees me through them all. Not that this year is less hectic than last, yet I seems to have much more time to smell the flowers, and have a prolonged holiday break. And yes, I got to see the Alps!

Chapter 5
This is by no means the last chapter, yet it will be the summary of all. For the longest time, I finally picked up my paint and brush this year to start drawing again, never drew so much illustrations for the past 10 years except architectural plans, etc. Only now did I realise how much I miss the fun of painting, not for anyone, just for the fun of it. Hope you too share my joy in looking at the illustrations. This itself is also a miracle from Papa God, that He makes time for me to do what I enjoy doing in the midst of all that I got to do!

Finally, with the above illustration, it shows the diagrammatic summary of 2005, and yet ahead of me, I know He is holding my hand, walking with me on the path of 2006, and that applies the same to you too! Hope you all have a blessed Christmas today! I sure do, had a great time with my family yesterday, having dinner together, opening gifts and watching TV, the simple pleasure in life! For this is the season to celebrate His birth!

Monday, December 19, 2005

How much are we worth?

Just happened to watch a few scenes of a Taiwanese show a few days ago, not that it was a good drama that got me talking about it, in fact I can’t even remember the title of the drama, but an interesting phrase was brought up in the midst that made me ponder on it and also prompted me to redraw a similar illustration I drew a few weeks ago, but in a different expression.

In the show, a girl saw herself worthless, simply because she felt that she is of no use and that she matters nothing to anyone. Just at that moment, I saw something I never really study in depth before. How often we see our own worth through the eyes of others? How often we weigh ourselves based upon how important we matter to someone or how useful we are in this world. Suddenly, I realize how pathetic we are, to fall into this trap, this vicious cycle of searching for our self worth in this world, through the eyes of others, even through the eyes of our loved ones. If in this world, we matter not to anyone, does that mean we are worth nothing?

Perhaps that is why many fall into the trap of depression. Or perhaps that is also why many of us could not help ourselves but fall into the trap of the rat race, climbing on top of one another, stepping on others to hopefully bring greater “honour” to ourselves, and perhaps to even impress our superiors? Selah. (Not that I am suffering from such a situation now, just felt adamant towards it all of a sudden.)

I am glad and felt extremely fortunate, blessed, that the once inferior me, seems to have come out of that trap slowly. Not that I have already climbed to the top, by stepping on many others, but that Someone proves to me my worth, my price. I must have worth a great deal (the price tag on me is priceless), that He is willing to give up all that He has, even His life for me. Selah.

Perhaps in people’s eyes now, I seem aloof, I seem stubborn, refusing to compromise, refusing to follow the norm. I chose to walk in a different, untested ground. Yet let it be. Because I know my worth. I am contented. I am satisfied. I am happy. I am learning and determined not to fall into the trap with His help because I am different, I am priceless in His eyes. I know where I belong, as I am already on top, on His broad, strong shoulders, and there is nowhere else I would rather be. I don’t live or make my dwelling in another’s opinion, I live and ride upon His shoulder! I felt the sudden sense of freedom. And you too! We are special! We are priceless! In Him alone! Just His little lamb!

Friday, December 16, 2005

What to write? Simplicity

Since Wednesday, I have been wondering what to write, and therefore this explains the slight delay till today, and the above picture I drew. Thanks for dear ones and friends that have encouraged me a lot through this year, be it in the form of an encouraging note, or sms, or even a simple comment on the blog, I really appreciate it, and thanks for taking time to read them. I do re-read my own writings at times, and I realized perhaps I wrote too long too much, with slight deviation from my simple initial intention of sharing some simple, hopefully, encouraging cartoons and drawings, to brighten your days. Therefore for the coming year, I shall concentrate on the drawings more. (Hope I will keep to this.)

Yet before the new year begins, pardon me for writing long for the meanwhile. Being the “shy” me, I realized writing is much easier for me to express than speech, and thus this explains why I tend to write too much, do forgive me for this. (I am very quiet when I am working, therefore I need to fulfill my quota of word somehow everyday through other means such as writing.)

Nothing in particular happened this week. Life is a simple routine, and today is as of any other days. However, I reached home extremely early today, as I came home straight from site meeting. My mom was so pleasantly surprised when she opened the door for me, that she gave me such a huge smile on her face. Indeed, this could be one of those really rare days that I reached home before 8pm.

After having a prolonged dinner, with my usual salad, steam egg, fish, and specially made Bah Kut Teh (A soup cooked with pork ribs etc), I spent the entire night watching TV, from 8.30pm to almost 12 midnight. This, the simplicity of it all, was truly a blessing. When was the last time I had such a luxury of sitting in front of the TV and indulge in such an activity?

Looking around me, nothing much to do, just a sense of thankfulness in my heart, with all the needs met in life, and more than that, being blessed with all the modern equipments in life, which are not necessities for living, but good to have, I am thankful and contented. Able to sit in front of my PC now, able to read and write, typing away on my keyboard is a luxury that I almost forgot most of the time, taking things for granted. I truly have everything. Thank You.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

I Have Wings

Heard a beautiful Christian song today and reminded me of another Chinese song I loved. That was how the above drawing came about. Since a child, I had great inferior complexity, and even as the Lord restores me as I grow older, there are still times when I felt inadequate, unworthy, though the frequency of that happening has reduced much over the years. This is especially so in my career and another area of my life.

From young, I never felt I was smart or gifted or talented. People around me may feel that i have the gift for arts, but I had never thought so of myself and I tend to put in much effort to achieve and line up with people's expectation of me. Over the years, I worked very hard, knowing that since I am not clever, I had to be extra hardworking, believing that, so long as I double the effort what others would normally put in, I should be successful. And for many years, this theory had not failed me till later on in life, when I entered the field of design. That was when I went through many failures, times and again, doubt and self doubt again and again, seeing my theory of success failing me. Finding myself not able to catch up with my peers, having no gift and talent, no ability, I utterly gave up on myself and design, went through a period of dark ages, wanting never to touch design again.

That was when I went through one of my life's most precious lesson. Having utter disappointment with myself, I finally gave up. Perhaps also for the first time, I turned to the Lord, seeking for His help, finally. (All this while He never leaves me.) Having still a lingering love for the arts and design, yet having no courage to turn back and restart from scratch, having no gut to see my utter lack of talent, He brought me up, put the passion into me, restored me and put me back on my feet. More than that, He gave me a pair of wings, in fact, He gave me Himself, He becomes my pair of wings. He taught me the steps to fly, He taught me to soar and then finally He makes me soar. He becomes my source, my strength, my inspiration, my only and final hope.

Once I related briefly this short past to someone, not in detail, and he mentioned something that caused me to ponder. He said if the Lord has not helped me, I may have become a very proud person today. And indeed, it may have been so, how scary that would be.

Today, I cherished this pair of wings very much, I thank the Lord for them every day in my heart, as I work and enjoy the process of my work, a sense of gratitude always overwhelms me. I know I could never have done or design anything without Him for He is my pair of wings.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Simple Blissfulness

Just came home, having heard a pretty unusual sermon today, and again, I felt I am in a state of blissfulness. Just a simple day or almost a week passed by, and I did not attempt to ponder on any deep thought to share. Nothing major or great happening this week. Perhaps this itself is a form of bliss, being able to live simply, enjoying each day as it comes, nothing and no need to worry about tomorrow, forgetting the "unhappiness" of yesterday, if any, and enjoy the present.

In fact, having moved into my own little flat for coming to 4 months, once a while, when I remembered, looking at my small little cosy abode, I would feel that I am very fortunate and blessed. Not that my house is beautiful, (though I think it is beautiful, at least in my eyes), that the fact I have a little home to look forward to everyday after I knock off from work, a bowl of nice delicious soup waiting for me at home, specially prepared for me by my Mom, and even some nicely cut up fruit prepared by my brother for me, I feel blessed. Simple pleasure, simple joy, simple gift of life, making everything so beautiful. The beauty of it all.

Just like the picturesque landscape I saw in Siena. The rolling mountains and valleys with plantations, and little huts or farmhouses scattered around. Nothing spectacular, yet in itself, the simplicity of it makes it so beautiful after all. Little human intervention, where man and nature co-dwell. Time seems no more. A state of rest, a state of just enjoying the moment.

Hope that while you are busy with work this week, or greatly anticipating the coming of the weekend, you too have time to enjoy the little NOW you have. Have a great blessed weekend ahead! (Not sure if you understand what I am writing, seems like I am just babbling nonsense, guess it is late, I am tired and it's time to sleep.) Thank God it is Friday today!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Festive Mood

I love Christmas! I can't say it enough, I simply love Christmas, the season of giving. Is it because it is the festive season, that makes my everyday work seem less hectic recently? I was surprised that I have time to relook and refine some of my previous designs, and even make changes to them as requested by the clients, with no complaints, wherein in other times I would have done. Or have I been transformed or changed? I hope it is the latter.

Looking back many years ago, we first started celebrating Christmas when my sister-in-law, then my brother's girlfriend, started buying presents for us every year. It was also then that my dad bought our first Christmas tree into our home, a white Christmas tree. As we moved to another abode, my dad bought another one, a 7 feet green Christmas tree, which is still in use now, at my brother's place. As for my small little cosy abode, I went to get mine about 3 weekends ago, a 5 feet green Christmas tree.

I love this season of giving, in fact, with a little bit more love for it than Chinese New Year, since young, even way before the Lord found me, much more now that I am His beloved. Shopping or making Christmas gifts is never a chore to me, but a really fun and enjoyable process, as I visualise the facial expressions of my loved ones as they open the presents. It is almost like a chance to reunderstand everyone of them again, their likes and dislikes, the things they need etc. Every year this is a learning process, as I would again need to re-educate myself on the most trendy toys, gadgets or fashion. It is fun. And the best part of it all, is to be able to buy something that one would love to have but would most likely never buy for themselves.

As I ponder on this, if this brings me so much joy, how much more would our Lord feel when He give to us, rather than we trying with our puny little strength to do things on our own? If He would give himself for us, how much more would He not give us all the good things we need in life?

Therefore, as we prepare for this great season of giving, may you too have a great time shopping for the gifts, the fact that we can give means that we must be very blessed, to be able to bless someone else! Meanwhile, have a great week ahead, as we draw nearer to Christmas!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Christmas Tree and Presents

For the past 3 weeks since I was back from my holiday, there didn't seem to be any weekend that I really stayed at home and did nothing, except for the actual day when I landed, I was having jet lap and needed a long nap. Yet, for the following few weekends, I was either busy going around selecting and buying my Christmas tree and decorations, or scouting for presents for my family. How fast I have forgotten the little resolution I made when I was back? I told myself, trying my best with my puny effort to tell myself to have at least 8 hours of sleep everyday, but I think I broke my one and only resolution perhaps on the very next day.

Now that the Christmas tree is up, the lights are on, and about 85% of the gifts bought and ready, I felt that I should perhaps slow down my pace, something that I kept telling myself, do slowly and enjoy the process. How true it is! Just heard about this message and it kept ringing in my ear, how we tend to "postpone our enjoyment", thinking that perhaps I would be happy when Christmas comes, or when I go for my break, etc etc. How often we dwell in the future, doing things now to perhaps "buy" happiness for the future! Yet how often we forgot that what we have is actually now, and the right way to live is to enjoy NOW! Just as my beloved Jesus said, sufficient for the day is its own trouble. Live one day at a time! Most of all, enjoy it! In fact, how true it is, there are only 2 ways to live your life, to enjoy or not enjoy.

Having said this much, to be honest, I did enjoy all the shoppings I made, the process of putting up the tree, preparing all the Christmas presents, pondering on what to buy for each individual etc etc. In fact, it is my family tradition, to have a wonderful family get together on the Christmas eve, to stay late, hopefully past midnight, if the children can stay awake, and open the presents together. It is always a memorable time to be, and there is no other place I rather be, or no other people I rather be with on a Christmas eve than with my family.

Yet this year will be slightly different. Since we moved out, the celebration will be at my small humble yet very cosy home. And I am sure that my Papa God will be just as faithful to bless this wonderful memorable occasion for my family and I. Thank you Papa God. Meanwhile, while I am looking forward to the celebration, I shall also enjoy my NOW, and before my 7 hour sleep (changed to 7 hours now, cos more achievable) resolution becomes another unfulfilled desire, I shall end here. Nite!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Most Charming!

Pondered a lot recently on something that I discovered 2 years ago (but I forgot all about it until I caught it again recently), especially with all the hype of the recent release of PSLE results. Not that it has anything to do with me, but I have so many people around me whom I knew who had something to do with the release.

I went to a wonderful, enjoyable concert yesterday. Not that it has many stunts or many change of clothes etc, but it is a purely "music first" kind of concert. Guess if you are not new to Chinese pop, you will probably know what concert was held yesterday in Singapore. Anyway, just in case you don't know, it's David Tao's. Perhaps you might be asking, what has this got to do with the release of results I mentioned earlier? In fact, it has to do with a "revelation" I had 2 years ago, when I was at a similar concert, it created a no small impact on me, not just the music, but I caught a glimpse of beauty, charm, that is always happening to people around me that I never seem to notice until then. I saw and realised then, a person is at his or her most attractive moment when he or she is enjoying what she is doing at that very moment, that passion covers any lack of cosmetic or charisma.

I realised that everyone exudes a certain amount of charm in one way or another, be it an athlete, an artist, a teacher, a singer, a musician, a pastor, a chef, a social worker, a marketing personnel or even for my profession, an architect. At that very moment when one is caught enjoying his work, that passion just oozes forth, and suddenly that person unknowing is at his or her most attractive moment.

Plus the recent sermon I heard, indeed, almost all people who are true to their inner hearts' cries, when they answer the call, that desire in their hearts, despite of all the anticipated difficulties ahead, despite of all the rational reasonings or people's opinions, they will almost all the time find themselves most happy as long as they persevere, or they didn't gave up their dreams. And I believe and think it is true, all successful people are those who tapped on their inner desires and move ahead to nurture that hidden treasure, that God-given gift within. (Papa God is fair, and He certainly has given everyone something special!)

I saw that at the concert last night, again (I am a quiet supporter, fan, not one of those who stand up, shout and sing), I saw someone on stage, immersed in his passionate work, or rather his enjoyment, and the audience enjoyed the concert simply because he enjoyed his passion, and he at that moment seemed to be most charming.

And you know what? My mind just suddenly wandered off, just as he went on to shake the hands of the people off stage. I saw Jesus in my mind, in my imagination all of a sudden, I went back 2000 years in the midst of the concert, I saw the people throoping unto Jesus, desiring to touch Him, and then, I am perfectly sure He must be the most charming, as He enjoyed His work of reaching out to the lost ones, His beloved ones at all moments. No wonder most folks liked to be around Him then, and even now!

My mind wandered for 5 minutes and I came back to reality. I realised all of us are differently made, PSLE does not determine what the outcome of a kid should be, each kid has his or her own bent, and parents are just God's stewards, to identify the gift laid within each child by Papa God, and they are to guide him or her in that direction to fully sharpen the gift. I am convinced, I am assured, I am certain this is the way it should be. Thank you Papa God, that from young, I am not sure how, but I was surrounded by people who led me to study art, to enjoy art, and finally to make art as part of my career, and almost everyday, you know what, I look forward to work, it is fun! Thank you Lord, may you make me most charming in the process while I enjoy my passion too! Amen!

(Just a side track, as the concert ended so late last night, I actually missed the last train...sigh...thank God the concert was great! Or else my complaining spirit was sure to manifest....)

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Venice: What a sight!

Perhaps it has become a routine to drop by here to write a line or two, although I have no clear direction as to what to write. But I did paint a lot since I came back from Italy, with so many beautiful sceneries fresh in my mind, and over 2000 digital photos with me, I just hope to share the beauty of God's creations with you all, if you can spare a little bit of time.

Of all the places I visited in Italy, I would say I like Venice the most (or one of the "mostest"), and perhaps, that will be the place I may go back again when opportunity arises. To me, I was fascinated with the fact that there is absolutely no vehicles, and everyone depends on either the water transport or by foot. It is a beautiful sight, with the element of water going right to one's door step, and even the buses are in the form of small ships. I simply could not use words to explain the beauty and the peculiarity of the place!

Another quality I love about the place is the atmosphere of the arts. I can't say I met any artist or musician there, but it does have the quality of art in the air, everything is so picturesque. The wonders of glass are everywhere, no doubt, it is a place where beautiful works of glass are produced, yet quite beyond my budget to buy any. I would love to own one of those one of its kind vases though.

The only down side during our expedition in Venice was the weather, so wet and the day seems so short. Yet despite of this, it is still beautiful, it must be much more enchanting when the weather is fine. Meanwhile hope you like the little picture I drew of a little water "street" in Venice!

Have a great blessed week ahead! Life is worth the living because of the Lord who makes everything beautiful no matter what! Cheers!

(By the way, just want drop a line here for you to share my little excitement, I am eagerly waiting to go for the concert this Saturday, thanks dearest sister, for remembering me even when I am thousands of kilometres away, to ask if I would like to go with you, and thanks for buying the ticket for me!)

Sunday, November 20, 2005

With Me Always

I may sound like a broken record, but then truly, I still want to say "how fast time flies!" It is already November and soon it will be Christmas.

Today, as I was on my way to church in the train, listening to one of my favourite songs "Jiu Si Ai Ni" by David Tao, I suddenly found my mind wandering off, reflecting on several beautiful memories of this year and the goodness of God in my life, and I was overwhelmed. (Not sure if you remembered this song, I wrote down the lyrics before in my blog several weeks ago.) Yet even before the year has reached its end, I realised how much has changed within this short span of time, and how much I have received and am still receiving, and I just want to take this time to list a few.

It's been about a year since I was transferred over to this new group in my office, to work directly with my present boss. I could still remember I was quite apprehensive initially, as several of those in his team are "crazy" workers, they worked really late (as in till 12 midnight and even beyond) and during weekends as well. Those who knew me, know that as far as possible, I don't work on weekends, and I don't work overnight, at most twice a year, in extreme exceptional cases. Yet, throughout this year, the Lord has been so faithful, I did not have to compromise on my working principles, and in fact, I did enjoy working with my "new" boss, he is great! (Of course, can't let him know.)

It's been slightly more than a year that I am in a new care group in Church, initially, wondering how I can relate to them, as most of them are married with kids, and I, being single. Yet as time passes, I enjoyed their presence deeply, missed everyone of them whenever they are absent, they are very wonderful people, very dear to me indeed, and this is a great year that I got to know everyone of them much deeper, all thank to Papa God, for bringing every single one of them into my life, that they are great blessings to me. I can almost say they have become another of my extended family, thank You Papa God.

In fact, last year I still remembered, I was under extreme stress, that I could feel my health being affected, and I was troubled too for being so stressed, and with work, with finding my new flat, perhaps even with a new ministry, etc etc, feeling inadequate, frustrated, and at times unworthy. It was a year of learning to let go, learning to delegate my work, trusting my assistants more, and from there learning to rest, which I am still learning. But the strange thing is, as you learn to let go more, more responsibilities are added at the same time. Why? Yet, this year and the years to come is not like last year, and it will never be, new tasks and challenges no longer seem burdensome, but another opportunity for the Lord to prove His wonderful faithfulness towards me. And yes, thank you Lord for my healing!

As the year went on, learning to let go is hard, yet ever important, if not the most important, to me. As one who is self-willed, with extreme belief only in my own self and own achievement, this was a very difficult process, yet ever so critical. In the process, I felt that blessings come when one does not look for them, and they always catch you by surprise. (How I used to run after them!) To list a few, I got a new extreme long play mp3 player without my asking, at almost half the original price, to me, it was never something I thought of getting this year, since I already had a very good one, though that one has a very short battery life. And who is to know that this new player is to keep me "company" through several really long journeys which my previous mp3 player would definitely failed me. But God knows.

Even for the renovation of my flat, I believed I must have done the least supervision ever, I only attend to it on saturdays, and at times, before I went to work, and I have never taken any leave to attend to it! Come to think of it, that was amazing! The Lord is truly wonderful by blessing me with a good contractor that gave me worry-free work, and little supervision.

As the year drew near the end, when I was tired and felt drained, wanting to plan for a holiday, out of nowhere, I was given an opportunity for a trip to Italy, therefore with half the trip paid for, though it was never on my agenda to visit Italy, never before have I ever thought about it, yet it came as a wonderful great blessing to me. The Lord knows, and His blessing chases me down. I ponder again.

This is not the last, but to me one of the greatest of all blessings, all through this year at work, I was given opportunities to do the things I enjoy doing, and to do projects that I always dream of doing, yet never dare to believe that I would actually do them one day, and my dearest Lord sees the desire of my heart and gives them to me. Somehow, sometimes, I felt I was really born for such a time as this, that Someone loves me so much, that He has pre-arranged everything wonderful, beautiful for me to attend to, to enjoy life itself and most of all, to enjoy Him.

And as I was pondering on all these on the train, I was touched, almost to tears, with the image of the above painting in my mind, the beautiful song in the background, and I hope you too will spend a little time, in this last coming month of the year, to ponder on the goodness of the Lord in your life, surely He has blessed you, and you too are like the little girl in the painting, He leads you by your hand, and He never let go, all you need to do, just follow, He knows best! And yes, He loves you deeply, with a passion!

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Home, Work and Routine

It's been about 4 days since I came back from my holiday. I headed back straight to work on the Monday, finding myself having a slight jet lag (almost falling asleep while drawing), meanwhile I am still slowly adjusting to it, and therefore I doubt I would attempt to write a long journal, since it is almost time for bed.

Everything is back to simple routine like the past, not that I am particularly fond of, but it does feel good as well. My work in office is not as hectic as when I left it to go for my long break, perhaps it is just the beginning, or rather, because my boss is also away for his holiday? Guess I will find out soon in a day or two when he is back. Yet I learnt to cherish this quiet peaceful tranquil moment, something I missed particularly. This does not come often and I simply enjoyed it, able to have nice chatty lunch with colleagues, not having to buy lunch back to office, work, eat, and draw at my work top, what a blessing this is!

Wanted to post something hilarious today, no particular reason, just wanted to show my dear travelmate-friend, as I had mentioned to her, I will draw her with the leaning tower of Pisa, so here it goes. Pal, I had a great time with you traveling to Pisa, and up to the tower, cheers, you made it to the top, I am proud of you! It was fun and unforgettable for ages to come! This exercise was going to last you for another year before your next expedition to the next wonder?

Perhaps to the surprise of many people, this is my first visit to one of the wonders of the world. Despite my frequent trip to China, I have yet visited the great wall, something that I really wanted to do in the past, a wish I had, that I could go there with my dad... Yet I know one day I would still visit, now for sure with my Papa God!

As for Pisa, after my simple analysis, I realised perhaps this could be one of the most convenient wonders to visit among all! No strenuous exercise required except for the 8 storey climb, as compared to the great wall, etc etc.

Pardon my babbling, guess it's time I hop on to bed, and yet today is another new day, with new challenges that await me (my boss is back), and yet, I know my Lord will always see me through victoriously! You too have a great week ahead, face your challenges with no fear, cos He is with you always! Cheers!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

This was done on a train ride, while trying to pass time, my self-portrait with my backpack. No color added, just the original, the way it was drawn in a lovely red sketch book that a dear friend-colleague had given me as a birthday gift which she bought from Europe. I forgot to draw in my mp3 player and earphones, that was how I stayed in touched with Singapore, listening to my Pastor's hilarious, heart-warming sermon.
little lamb art

I'm Back

I'm back, touched down this morning, well-protected in the arms of God, safe, healthy and sound. Can't think of any other ways to describe my condition, but all the worst case scenarios described as warnings from friends who were there before, about the stealing, pickpocketing, losing items, etc, did not happen to me, or was it ever close even.

I am truly thankful to Papa God for all He has done throughout the trip, His wonderful grace and protection, and most of all, Jesus' personal presence with me, without which, I am not sure how I managed to come through the 3 weeks. Beside the local food and family I missed in Singapore, it was Christian fellowship. For 3 weeks, I could hardly breathe words of thankfulness to Jesus openly with my travelmates, except in my blog, that was why I was so keen to find internet access everywhere I go.

Yet, thankful to God, I have great travelmates, but still, true enough, we also had conflicts despite of it all. Guess most of the problems may have stemmed from me, a stubborn gal, as what a longtime friend recently told me, I am still as stubborn as 15 years ago. (Thank God, stubbornness may not be bad all the time, it could also mean persistence!) Yet I hope there is no hard feeling left after the trip between my travelmates and me, just a case of differences in opinions, and may we keep only the sweet memories.

We travelled a lot. We went from Rome to Siena, Florence, Venice and finally Milan, before 2 of us took a night train back to Rome for our flight back. It was pretty fun, except for all the walking, which I would have very much preferred to have the quantity reduced, if we had bought day pass everyday (pardon me pals, if you read this and disagreed still). I am one person who would rather spend a little more, think a little less with a few simple conveniences right at my finger tips, such as day passes and a few good meals! How I loved those last few days when we finally gotten day pass, how I travelled! I think I learnt and would recommend to anyone, if possible, get the day pass, the few dollars more per day is worth it all, as one get to see more within a shorter period of time, and can travel much further and being less tired! Think about it this way, since you have already travelled all the way across oceans and continents there, what is a few more dollars anyway! This is my opinion, and since this is my blog, everyone is subjected to my opinion here! Hahaha!

I am a typical tourist, and I took on a typical tourist's objective. I was there to see things that tourists would see, and I did exactly that, that was when my path and my pals' parted. I went to several other places alone such as to see the sculpture of David at Florence (it was impressive, the expression on his face), the civic building's clock tower at Siena (the unforgettable sunset), Como lake at Milan and a few others. I enjoyed going to museums, and to climb to the highest points of most towns to have paranomic views, and my "poor" travelmates would had to visit them with me, guess it was better to part ways at times, sorry pals, I am just a typical tourist, no losing out. And also pardon me, pals, for being inflexible, I know I must have made you all very uncomfortable, about paying the full fare for several of the entrance tickets, not wanting to lie and all the integrity business, it is just me, the stubborn sheep, if you know me long enough, you would know I am like that.

The most uplifting portion of the trip, to my surprise when I looked back, besides conquering the clock tower and leaning tower of Pisa (will talk about this fun trip later when my sketch on the leaning tower is ready) was the little day trip I made alone to Como on the last day. Having no agenda, and no feeling for shopping, I bought a very early return train ticket, alone, and ventured into my little adverture with Jesus. In fact, for the entire trip in Italy, I harboured a desire to take a little look at the Alps, and that was the highlight of it all. Not knowing anything about the place, all I knew was where I could find a tourist information counter, and I asked direction all the way from the train station to get there. With half a day there only, I was recommended to take a boat ride in the lake and the funicular ride up the mountain when it was less foggy, and that was exactly what I did. I was beaming all the way, smiling on the boat, sensing a strong presence of the Lord, smiling at almost everyone I met. It was so beautiful and it was such a wonderful time alone and yet not alone! You may think I am a freck, but I felt I was on a date with the Lord!

The weather was to my surprise, so bright and sunny, with blue sky. Have I mentioned that we met with heavy rainfall both in Siena and Venice, where our main purpose was for scenic reasons. Yet when we headed north to Milan, thinking it would be colder, not to mention Como, which is at the border between Switzerland and Italy. It was a miracle to me then, a gift from Papa God that day that I could actually see the blue sky! With a heart of thankfulness and joy was how I made my way up on the funicular ride. And the climax of it all, was the moment I stepped out of the cable, I saw the Alps, the beautiful snow-topped mountain ranges in the distant, brightly lit by the sun! I was close to tears, with gratefulness in my heart, who am I to deserve this, yet cos of His love for me, I saw what I wished to see! Thank You Jesus! It was so beautiful, beyond words, and I was almost envious of the people staying on this mountain top, they are having a 7 star view from where they lived! And yet, of all people, I am to be envied the most!

There is only one dear Person to thank, despite of all the walking, I was not really tired, there seems to be Someone carrying me, I felt I was like mounted on wings, I would walk and not be weary, run and not faint. That was how I felt, except for the heavy backpack and the increasing products I bought everyday that added on the weight. Yet, He is my strength!

For the next few blogs, I should be putting up lots of sketches of the places I visited, really beautiful, and I really hope to share with you all, but not with photos, as this is a blog dedicated only to drawings, hope you all don't mind. And just a final note, thank You Jesus, for Your unfailing love towards me, despite of all my imperfections, which I get to see more during the trip, You remain faithful and true towards me, truly in You, I have everything!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Wet Day

Today was really a wet day, it was pouring so heavily, and the places we were visiting, the small little town, Chianti (not sure about the spelling) was so foggy, it felt like it was winter. This would be the first day we encounter any rain here in Italy since the day we arrived. And we are leaving Siena for Florence tomorrow, hopefully we get to visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa tomorrow afternoon or the following day. Not that we are really enchanted by the architecture or whatsoever, but merely out of vanity, how can we say we have visited Italy without going to take a look at this wonder of the world? Merely vanity, sigh, vanity.

Papa God was really kind today, despite the rain, we managed to capture a glimpse of sunlight streaming through the cloudy sky in the evening, while we were out in the little town, therefore my spirit was not totally dampened by the rain. All things work together for good, I believe.

You know something? I felt I almost have enough of my fair share of pasta and pizza for the entire lifetime, I really miss all the simple food back home. My kimchi ramen, tom yam soup, my daily salad prepared by my beloved mom, chicken wings, etc etc.... endless. Only till now did I realise how bless I am to be able to eat different type of food everyday back home in Singapore, truly we Singaporeans are fortunate. I missed chilles.

Another thing I missed is washing machine! It was kind of a thrill everyday, that we have to gauge whether we have enough time to wash our clothes before we move on to the next stop. Today was pretty disasterous, we washed our clothes last night, thinking it would be dry by today, but due to the wet weather, most of our clothes are half dried, so while I am blogging, my travelmates are busying drying their clothes with the hairdryer, thank God we still have a hairdryer in our room. Guess I just need to wash one more round of clothes and that will last me for the next 10 days, I would just wear the same T-shirt for 2 days! Another option is to buy new clothes, guess the second option is a bit too costly.

Meanwhile, I wish to send my regards to everyone back home. B or Mei or Xiang, can you kindly forward this blog's address to my brothers or sister-in-laws? Let them know I missed them! And also to let them know how I am for the past few couple of days. Till we meet again, stay blessed, everyone! (Not sure when I would get an internet access again.)

Tuesday, November 01, 2005


Had one of the most breathtaking view today in Italy, not in Rome, but in a small medieval town, Siena. It was so beautiful that it almost took my breath away. Initially, I was in a moment of wallowing in self pity, as none of my travelmates desire to conquer the tower that overlooked the whole city, due to the price we had to pay, 6 euros. For a moment I was truly very sad, having made our way to Siena without having a paranomic view of the city, and I was certain I would definitely have a sense of regret at the end of the trip.

In the end, I queued up alone for 45mins for my turn to proceed right up to the top of the clock tower, praying in my heart, knowing that I was not alone, but my dearest Lord Jesus would be with me all the way, ready to give me a most beautiful gift. Truly, He remains ever so faithful, I was able to catch the spectacular moment of the sunset, if I would to reach earlier or any minute later, I would have missed that moment, and I finally understood why the 45mins wait, any earlier, I would not have ventured to stay so long to wait for the sunset, fearing the long queue of people waiting for their turns. Thank You Jesus. I would never want to exchange this precious moment for anything else, as You prove to me Your never ending love to me once again. And yes, the view was beyond descriptions, I can actually see castles and fields in the distant from the top of the clock tower!

Siena is truly beautiful, it has that intimate, human scale, that gets into you, an unforgettable feeling, so unlike Rome, which is so majestic, so awesome, that makes one feel really out of place at times, as all the things around you seem to be blow out of proportion, being so many times bigger than what is required.

Tomorrow, we will venture to the surrounding smaller town in Siena, making our ways to winery and a castle. Sounds really fun! Will update more if I have time.

Meanwhile, very thankful to God that the place where we are staying, though a bit out of the way, has internet access. Thank You Papa God, thank You Jesus, You are with me always!

Monday, October 31, 2005

Misses Home

Kind of misses home, how is my mom, anyone? How is everybody back home? Would be leaving Rome tomorrow for Siena. A bit drain after several days of walking and minimum public transport, would definitely prefer to take lots of public transport than walking, yet in order to save cost....

Rome is quite a beautiful country, finally have enough of art museums and sculptures and cathedrals and basilicas..... guess would definitely want to have some great time shopping for gifts and hopefully Christmas presents.

Right now, I am using a paid internet access, so would not be long, as I do not want to burn a hole in my wallet. Just wish to drop a line here for all my beloved ones at home, miss you all, and yap, do keep me in prayer, and surely our Lord Jesus is with me! A bit exhausted only after 1 week. Will update more when I reach home... all the stories! Ciao! Blessed week!

Friday, October 28, 2005


Sorry, niece, I am unable to enjoy this wonderful birthday occasion with you this year, yet I hope I am still able to give you a pleasant surprise from Italy, most probably from Rome. I am not sure if I would be able to deliver this birthday wish personally and promptly though. In fact, I am now writing this blog several days before your birthday, hopefully I can find an internet access at my hotel to post it from there. So by the time you read this, I must have cleverly resolved this. Or should I get your sister to help me?

How time flies! Now that you are already working, and even considering of studying again. I am happy for you, in whatever decision you make, as I am so sure that whichever path you embark on, our Papa God will surely take care of you and He has great plan for you, way beyond your imagination.

The above was a sketch I did many years ago, I believe when you were perhaps 6 or 7 years old, and when I possibly was in my secondary school, asking you to be my model, while I practiced my sketching for my fine art class. I discovered this drawing while I was unpacking all my stuff during the moving of house, and what sweet vivid memory it evoked. It was not really a masterpiece, just a piece done by a simple young girl, whose aspiration then was to be an artist. I did a little touched up before I published it, but certainly, there are many flaws still.

This niece is another precious gem of mine, and most certainly the Lord’s. From young, she is quite unlike her older sister. Perhaps with a seemingly “outstanding” older sister in terms of study, she is always under scrutiny and comparison by adults and relatives, and indeed she may seem weaker in studies when compared with her sister, yet in other ways she is no inferior, and it does not take too long for one to discover. She is cheerful, bubbly, and at times almost “rowdy”. She does have the ability to make everyone around her comfortable.

From young, just like her sister, she spent a great deal of time with us, although she was cared for by a nanny. She would often come and stay with us over the weekend. As she grew older, and I grew wiser (I presume), I became her tuition teacher when she was in secondary school, giving her many intensive classes and drilling, preparing her for “O” level. I believe it must have been a frightening episode in her life, some sort of drilling that was, and thank God, she passed pretty well!

I remembered about 2 years ago, when she turned 21, we went backpacking in Shanghai, as part of her birthday wish to fly, and that was when I realized she could really shop, amazing! It was a wonderful experience, though I was a bit of a “fierce” aunt at times, which I know! Do forgive me!

Mei, know that you are no ordinary person, you are His beloved, special and unique in His eyes, and even in mine, and you have many gifts in you, placed there by our beloved Papa God, which you have yet sharpen them and use them to their fullest. Always remember, you are not a face in the crowd, you are special in Him, and even in my eyes. And for today, you are the superstar in my blog!

As promised and requested, I wrote about you in this blog as a birthday gift to you! Cheers and love ya! Blessed birthday!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Just a short note

I am now in my final day at Ancona, and tomorrow I will be leaving for Rome, visiting one of Renzo Piano's auditoriums. That to me is kinda of interesting as for the past few months, and in fact, almost 2 years, I have been dealing with quite a bit on auditorium design, perhaps this is one area that I should study into... I ponder.

Been saying that dinner here in Italy last for 4 hours, and it is quite an experience, I already had tasted twice for the past 2 days. How the dinner stretched into the wee hours of the night, and the most 'exciting' thing about it was that we never know what is coming next, we never know what was the next dish and what we are eating, until we ask the waiter. This was kinda of 'scary' for me as I am pretty fussy about food as most of my good friends would know, most of the time, I only eat vegetables, fish and chicken. And perhaps for once yesterday, I ate beef (other than in burgers). It was quite tasty after all, thank God it was prepared quite well, or else...

Many things to thank the Lord for. Perhaps not many of you know, I suffered 'air sickness' on plane sometimes, yet this time round, I decided to just trust the Lord with no medicine, and thank to His faithfulness, the 12-hour flight was great, I could eat and sleep and I actually finished 3 movies on board. Must be God.

Anyway, got to go, someone is waiting for the computer as well. We all are deprived of proper internet access. Not sure if I can find an access in Rome, see you all soon. God bless and have a blessed week! B, send me an sms, please with your email address by today! Thanks.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Greetings from Italy

I am now in Italy, in a countryside area, having my seminar, really kinda slow here, and I am still trying to get used to it. The good news is that there are internet access in my hotel room, but the bad news is the software is too old and I could not access my blog, and therefore, I am really grateful to find an internet access here at the seminar place, of course, sneaking out of the seminar to have a quick fix of blog.

Things are really kind of relaxing here, we have long italian seminar with English translation and long Italian dinner, that last for 4 hours due late into midnight. There are so many things I want to say here, but guess I got to rush in for my seminar.

Meanwhile, my dearest niece, can you send me your email address via sms to me I am trying to contact you but I have difficulty locating your email address. Thanks, dear.

Dear ones, our Lord Jesus loves you and miss you all. Will get back soon if I find an access again.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

On Leave Finally

Almost could not send this journal out before I embark on my holiday tonight. My pc almost "dieded" on me again, until I prayed and spoke nice word to it, and even threaten it, and like an angry parent, I took out the last straw, I hit it literally on its side, and suddenly it came back to life, amazing, miracle! Guess it is high time I get a laptop, yet this has to wait till early next year, since I spent so much already this year, on my flat, renovation and this trip, although it is already half paid for. Why am I still grumbling? Papa God help, You overlooked all my imperfection and You are my provider!

Was thinking perhaps I would drop a line here in my blog, if my pc still could not work, at the airport later tonight, yet thank God, this needed not be consider afterall.

Once again, I sound like a broken record, I just want to apologise to my niece and my friend, sorry for not being able to celebrate your birthdays, but for sure, you will get a present. As for the 2 weddings I missed, sorry for that, I am sure you will definitely be very blessed, for I know my Papa God takes good care of you, be the most beautiful brides ever.

As for all the dear ones who sent me smses and emails, knowing I am going for a long break, thanks, and do keep me in prayer, that this will be a wonderful relaxing trip, where I do not need to think too much. Finally, I let my brain sleep a while, and just satisfying my 5 senses will do. Thank You Shepherd, for bringing your little lamb there, and you'll be there with me still.

And not being sure whether I would be able to post anything here while in Italy, if I can find an internet access, I would definitely drop a line or 2 during the trip, when I have nothing better to do at night, and when I miss home, but I doubt I can post any pictures even if I draw a lot, unless I find a scanner, or use my camera to take my drawings? Too troublesome, I suppose, being the lazy me...

So many things to say, yet so little time... cleared almost everything at work finally, about 80%, I suppose, guess my colleagues will have to take care of the 20%, not totally my fault, simply wrong timing. But guess what? I finally cleared my table. (After being reminded by my boss to clean and pack my table before I go on leave. I actually planned to do this, but with his reminder, I did it with great reluctance, it is so human nature, to dislike doing things when asked to do it...) It was so clean and tidy, that I couldn't believe it myself, I finally see what is the color of my table top! It is white with many scratches! Amazing! I could hardly recognise it. Hope it will be maintained as it is till I come back, hopefully my colleagues will not dirty it while I am away, and hope you all read this! For colleagues who have read this, perhaps you can kindly forward this to my dearest 3 assistants sitting next to me?

I also like to take this chance, to thank them, thanks dear colleagues, for helping me out all these while, and many more days to come, and also covering my work for me while I am away, you all are really dear and precious in my eyes, and more so in my Lord Jesus' eyes, hope you will come to know of His great love for you all. Meanwhile hang on! Thanks, see you all in 3 weeks' time. You all are great, and are great blessings to me!

As for the dear friend-colleague, I can't wish you farewell personally, but I wish you all the best in your future endeavour, and also, you know me, I still hope you can join me for one service in church someday! Hope you get to read this, ST, can forward this for me to her? Thanks.

ST, also I pray for you, knowing surely, our Lord Jesus, He is your wisdom, you sure will do real well! Jia You! Rest in Him is the key!

Lastly, my dear nieces and nephews, my dear ones, if you have any time to spare, do visit grandma while I am away, keep her totally occupied, okay? I sure can trust you all with that right? For one though, I know I can trust Papa God to take good care of my mom, while I am away, for He cares for her even more than me! Thank God I have You in my life! See all of you soon..... will miss you all....But I will sure have great fun!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

No picture, just a "Long Line"

It is like a final countdown to me, as the day of my long break draws closer. Having many seemingly endless amount of things to clear, and things to plan, everyday seems to fly past so fast, or has time indeed moves faster than we thought it is? i ponder with no answer.

No attempt was made today to draw something but just to drop a line here. Thanks my dear colleague, for offering me help in finding hotel accommodation. All thanks to our dear Papa God, we found a hostel already, though not as inexpensive as yours, but it is fine. And sorry for not being able to attend your wedding, I would really really love to be there, as since I joined this office, this would be the first colleagues' wedding that I would be attending, do pardon me! Wish to be there, this is my sincere desire.

Going for such a long trip, with no clear direction as yet whether all the hotels we are staying would have attached bath, and also to save the hassle and time to wash my hair, I cut my hair short recently, no special style in particular, just told the hairdesser, shoulder length please with layers, despite the chances of the hair ends curling inwards, I do not really care, so long as it is easy to maintain. No particular reason, simply utilitarian. The reason I am spending time here to explain this was because several persons came to ask why I cut my hair, was it a change of look? I ponder again in deep thought, not sure, maybe subconsciously? And thank God, I think I look fresh in this short hair. (When I was in high school, my hair was only at my ears' length.)

And lastly, I pray that I would have a wonderful time travelling with my pals, one is a great co-worker, the other a pal I just knew for less than a month. Lord, teach me to appreciate one another's differences, and enjoy one another's company, only you can! I decide from day 1 that we would agree to disagree and resolve amicably any hiccups that arise. Thank You Lord, I know it is already answered.

Friday, October 14, 2005


It’s been almost a week since I last wrote, and about a week more, I will be off to my long break! And thanks for my niece’s support, who asked me why I didn’t post for the past 5 days. I pondered as well. I do not know how I manage to write when I was so busy a week before, and while this week I am relatively less busy, I was too lazy to write.

And indeed, I am thankful to Papa God, for this wonderful peaceful, less hectic week, though there are still many “datelines” and with the fact that the day of me going on long leave approaches, I would like to finish all the things on hand to prevent passing on too much things unto my assistants. Indeed, I cherished the peace and slight monotonous of this week, certainly a little amount of routine in life could really be enjoyable at times.

While I am looking forward to the break, I was also sorry to say that I would be missing a few good friends’ wedding and a few dear ones’ birthdays. Wish you have a blessed birthday.

As the day of my Italy trip approaches, my pals and I began to realize we have so many things to do yet so little time left. In fact, I have tried booking several hotels in Rome but to no avail. Papa God help! Only you can put us at the right place at the right time! Thanks, Dad!

This would be the second real backpack experience I would be having in my life, the last one was about 5 years ago, and it was truly fun, with 8 of us, including my friend’s parents and another friend’s sister. Really unforgettable, how we try to save and cut cost, waiting for the supermarket to announce discount price after 7pm, and how we bought fruit and vegetable to bring back to our small hotel room to savor with our instant noodles. How we studied the maps, took night trains to save on accommodation, and how I “forced” every one of them to go Disneyland with me. It was fun!

While that was a past episode in my life, I move on, ready for another adventure, and I pray for peace between my travel mates and myself, no argument! And do pardon me, pals, I am not the really adventurous type, I don’t like to cycle and I don’t like to swim, though I can do both a little…. I just want a simple break, a getaway, a no brain trip, and an eye opener architecture retreat….

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Learnt this great truth about nature today, and was almost touched beyond words. Have you ever consider if the amount of water held up in the clouds did not descend upon earth in the form of rain or snow? The amount is tremendous, and if we were to imagine pouring out the water like we are pouring out water from buckets, how much of this beautiful earth will be destroyed by the tremendous force and impact? God in His love for His creation has created rain, pouring forth the water in droplets, so that even the weakest, most vulnerable flower can still survive and bloom after a heavy shower, how great is His love for us!

little lamb art

Thanksgiving vs. Taking Things for Granted

I apologized for my previous journal which seemed to dwell in an air of unhappiness and discontent. I was indeed so for the past 2 weeks. Things have turned around during these last few days, and situation will surely become clearer after I come back from my long break in a few weeks’ time.

I have opted to be dropped out of a team of a “prestigious” project with the “unbearable” colleague, I can only tell Papa God, I failed to see that Christ loved him and died for him too, and I wanted a quick way out, and God in His mercy has allowed a way of escape for me, thank You, Papa God. I am thankful for being blessed with wonderful bosses that understood and did not insist on me staying in the team. Thank Jesus for great bosses that understand. “Prestigious” to me is not as important as compared to enjoying my daily work.

There is a great restructuring of the team I am in, and I am still adjusting to it, I will attempt to talk about it in future when I am back from my break. Guess I need to spend this long awaited break to think about my new team and trust the Lord with all the new team players. Lord, give me wisdom and grace, without You, I am truly nothing. Yet, I trust my Lord that this restructuring will result in better time management in the team, better welfare and greater efficiency, leaving all with more time with loved ones and yet able to accomplish our work and more, this is my prayer, Lord.

Many a times, we tend to overlook small little things in our lives, taking things for granted, and I am truly thankful for a wonderful pastor who reminded me today how blessed I am, and how much I already have. I am glad to be born and living, having all my senses working, able to walk, talk, see, smell, taste, touch, hear, and enjoy simple pleasures in life. I am thankful for a beautiful home to come back to after a long day work, and a nice warm meal waiting for me.

I am thankful that I have a close-knitted family, and a mom who loves us unconditionally. I am thankful for wonderful siblings who care and love one another although they each have their own families and we are staying apart. I am thankful that I am already an auntie with great nieces and nephews since I was seven. I am thankful for friends I have, friends of old, from primary school to university, wonderful co-workers and dear friends in the office, understanding bosses, beloved friends from church, a wonderful gang of caregroup members who care and pray for me always, a wonderful church that I grow up in and humble pastors who teach me the wonderful love of God and His Son.

Yet, most of all, I am thankful to Papa God for loving me so unconditionally, always trusting me again and again even when I failed many times, and my dearest Shepherd Jesus, who never leave me nor forsake me, and is always with me despite of my many imperfections and shortcomings, yet He loved me the same and died for me. Thanks Jesus.

I am thankful. I am reminded and learning to appreciate all that I have, and to enjoy the simple things of life, enjoy the journey of life itself. I reflected. I changed my mind, realizing my past 2 weeks of unhappiness partly came as a result of me losing sight of what I already have and kept looking at what I hope to have. Remind me always of this, Lord, truly I am a very blessed person, and in fact, I have everything because You are in my life, Jesus. I am learning to cherish all that I have now.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

No Regret

Didn’t have a good sleep last night, or rather this morning, tossing and turning on bed, although I was extremely tired having reached home from work at 4am and having to rush to office for an early meeting. I am one who can fall asleep in less than 5 minutes the moment I hit my bed. Thus it was an unusual day for this to happen. Today’s blog will take on a sad note, do pardon me. I was deeply upset yesterday, and perhaps the first of a long time, I cried tears of sorrow.

Yesterday, I decided to get some cough syrup from the family doctor before I headed to work. I had a nice short stroll with my mom, chatting about work, food and simple everyday occurrences. Recently, I noticed my mom enjoy going shopping with me, which in the past, I could hardly drag her feet to go anywhere further than 30 minutes away by train.

I perceived she is lonely. In the past, she would not have wanted to walk all the way to the MRT station with me, yet yesterday she volunteered. I began to wonder what she does everyday at home, despite my giving her the best Chinese cable entertainment channels possible, helping her plan things to do when alone, teach her to go Orchard to shop which she never does when alone, as she tends to get lost in the underground MRT train, as announcement is made in English only. She is lonely. I can’t emphasis this enough to let myself know. I was arrested with this heartache upon realizing this.

In the midst of my busy schedule, now having a home to take care of, I felt an unknown burden which I may have placed upon myself, with bills to take care, and added responsibility, for a moment, I lost sight of the reason of why I worked for the past couple of months, and I realized I have unknowingly fallen into the trap of working too hard and late into the wee hours of the day. Is it worth all the while? I repented.

I hardly see my mom everyday except for the brief 15 minutes in the morning when I am having breakfast, as several nights when I reached home, it was already late. Yet all these have never bothered me so much until yesterday, coupled with working with an unbearable colleague, who really made my work which used to be fun into a chore. I dreaded working with him, who has the ability of making a relatively fun project into a strenuous task, stretching my working hours into the wee hours of the night, because of that.

I was mad, frustrated, and this was further aggravated with sorrows, guilt and emotional pain. After a long day at work, on my way home on a cab, raining cats and dogs just before dawn, I saw a familiar figure standing at the lift lobby at 4am, it was my mom, waiting at the void deck for me. What if I did not come back till 6am? She must have stood there for more than an hour. My heart sank, and I cried, alone hiding in the toilet cubicle, fearing anyone to see. My eyes are opened. I repented. Sorry, mom, I should know better. It is not the money that I gave her that shows her I care, but my time with her.

During the short few hours in bed this morning, I finally made up my mind that I would let my boss know, hopefully something will work out to reduce my workload, and I would have no regret even if I am to resign. And indeed, I did, after the presentation that we rushed out the previous night, I did precisely that, I relented to my boss in a clear, concise email, and a sense of joy came and the burden left me totally. I know I did the right thing, I know I got to let go, and trust God. I know it is time to prioritize the things I value in life. Thank you Father for making me see. Thanks, Dad, thanks, Jesus. No regret. All things will surely turn out for good. (I do have a good working environment and a good boss, despite of that "hard to work with" colleague.)

Now I know what is precious to me, spending time with my family, having time to attend church and bible study, is indeed a blessing no money can buy, time with my loved ones. And now I finally see and know. No more compromise, no more waiting till tomorrow to cherish and appreciate those you love, now is the time.

I am assured that tonight I will sleep like a baby, in His arms.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

I am always fascinated with seashell. Isn't nature beautiful? Having just moved house, I can finally understand the hassle of moving around, upgrading apartments, etc. Yet Papa God is so amazing, look at the seashell, isn't it the home to a sea creature. It grows with it, adapting to its new needs and growth, and most of all, it moves wherever the owner moves, without packing and unpacking. This is the silent cry of a lazy person like me. Just a simple sketch, hope you too have time to look at a little beauty in nature today, certainly it is one of God's way of expressing His love towards you with His creation.

little lamb art


Yesterday was an unusual Saturday for us, as a family, since my mom, my eldest brother and I moved away about a month ago. So busy was the past few weekends, with house warming and office’s cruise, that I hardly noticed the difference until yesterday.

It is part of our family routine to have family dinner on every Saturday night. My mom being the binding force for the entire family, draws everyone together every Saturday. At least to me in the past, to have dinner together was effortless, as all my brothers and sister would come to my second brother’s place for dinner, and I needed not to travel at all, since I was staying with him.

Yet, things have changed since the day we moved. My house isn’t that big and spacious, and for the entire family to gather at my place seems a bit out of proportion. Thus, we gather we shall still meet at my second brother’s place for dinner. Yesterday was the first dinner after our moving away, it was a strange feeling to me, as we made the journey to my old place of residence for dinner. No longer do I wait for my siblings to come, but I travel to meet them. Perhaps, I was nostalgic, or not used to it, somehow it just felt a bit different for me.

I also experienced a strange and yet familiar feeling again yesterday. Seems so familiar, it reminded me of the day when I passed the exam to qualify as an architect. I felt I was finally free to do whatever I want, to pursue whatever dream or something totally different, and to go anywhere, and even to give up architecture totally. As if a huge stone that I have unknowingly put upon myself, trying to work it out on my own, without Papa God’s help, has been removed. I felt a burden suddenly disappeared and I was ready and free to pursue my dream. This feeling came back again to me yesterday. Only now did I finally realize, I have truly moved house. For the past few months, I was so caught up with choosing the flat, buying the flat, getting the loan, finding the correct contractor, designing my flat, renovating and finally moving and unpacking, it is only now that it dawned on me it is finally over and I have a place of my own.

And at the same time, it freed me. For the past few months, I have been postponing all my travel plans, and dreams, thinking that all these can wait till I have settled down, and now, it almost caught me by surprise, it is all over and I can move ahead with my life to do whatever I want again, except for the unwilling loan at the back of my mind.

I wonder why I felt this way. It could be due to an old friend of mine. She has decided to pursue a long cherished dream of working oversea. All along, she is one of the few that to me, who constantly displays great passion for architecture. She can spend days to perfect a design which I felt already perfected. She explores, she experiments, she enjoys the process, and for that, I salute her and am proud of her for her boldness to move ahead to a land where her talent can be further sharpened. I wish her all the best in her journey, and most of all, during this phase of her life, may she and her husband find the greatest love ever, the love of Jesus.

As for me, I still cherished within me some precious long time dreams, I am still not so sure whether architecture will be my lifelong career, yet for now, I enjoyed it, the joy of seeing spaces and forms in my mind and transforming them into blueprints and finally into reality, is still a thrill to me now. There are still many dreams, and though I am not sure how they are going to be fulfilled, I just know right within my heart, it is in His hands. Meanwhile, I just live a day at a time, enjoying the process while He continues to open door for me. Rest in Him is the key. Rest.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

My Self Portrait

How can an aspiring artist cum cartoonist not draw some self portraits? So the above is my humble attempt, I am cute isn't it? (don't puke please.)

You must be really surprised to see this posting so soon, early part of the week, on a Tuesday. I thought this will be a great way to allow my smile to be permanently imprint on the screen, since one of my colleagues keep commenting how "forced" my smile looked at times, especially when I seem hyper "stressed" or busy. So here it goes!

In fact, I was thinking maybe I should take this opportunity to write a bit on myself, not to mention that I have always been writing on myself, and I bet you pals know me more through this blog than the past few years put together. Yet, I would still attempt to do so here, perhaps for the first and the last time. So please bear with me for this little elaboration.

I am a very shy person. I am afraid to express myself verbally in front of others, but I can express myself slightly better in words and pictures, that is why I attempt to write. Yet, people around me may think of me as a rowdy, fun-loving person, as I dislike sudden silence moment, and when such moment occurs, I will always either try to make fun of people, make a fool of myself to draw some laughters from others, or try to make people talk. However, many a times, when friends are alone with me, especially when it is one to one, you will find me extremely quiet, and that is me. I don't open up my feelings to people very often, and if I do to anyone, that one must be a very dear dear friend, yet I am a pretty good listener. But I speak to Papa God all my ups and downs, for this is the very private "little lamb", me. But I am a bit blunt in speaking my opinions, people often described me as either very "true" or too "straight" (in Chinese).

I am also very conservative, the typical old-fashioned Chinese, who believe strongly in moral values and strong family ties, perhaps due to my upbringing and all the Chinese and Korean dramas I often watched.

I am not very fussy, and a not "into detail" kind of person, I don't really triumph in details, but I am a more big picture person, and that makes me very "man" in most of my thinking, sometimes I think people around me may think I think and work more like a man than a real man. (I am female, for your info, if you don't know.) I even shop like a man, very focused. One can attempt to distract me, but hardly anyone succeeds. Sometimes, I am so focused, I wish I can be more distracted, especially in terms of work, being task oriented, I tend to neglect people's feeling at times. So if I did offend anyone in the process, I wasn't intentional, just task oriented.

In a nutshell, I am a person with many faults, and uncountable imperfections. Nothing much to boast about, but one thing glad to always remind myself, I am still a beloved "little lamb" of God, His beloved child! Hope you see a bit of light of who I am from this! Shalom!

Monday, September 26, 2005

What A Sunday!

It’s already quarter past 12, and I am still here, writing. It is simply amazing how yesterday, Sunday passed by.

I just came back from an office’s cruise to nowhere. More a “strategizing cruise” for the future of the office. Initially, many of us were quite apprehensive about all the meetings we are going to have on board. Yet, looking back now, it seems pretty short and little, in fact, a bit too little, and that most of the work to be done were the directors’ part. I almost felt we did not really achieve the objectives of the trip. Anyway, this is just my opinion, and since this is my blog I am entitled to my own opinion.

Much can be said about today, this was an unusual Sunday to me, that I actually only attended half a church service. I rushed to church the moment I hit coast, knowing that if I were to attend a later service, I was sure to be really tired, with even shorter attention span and concentration ability, and that was why I rushed straight to church while I was still bright and cheerful after the cruise… and some of you must be asking, why don’t you just miss once? And you know what? I couldn’t, I couldn’t help myself. I need to recharge, and this is the place where I can always feel “fully charged” after service, and knowing that I have a long week ahead, and many challenges await me, how could I let it pass? Therefore this is my reason. I love listening to sermons, and I think this is also the secret formula to be efficient at work for the following week.

Anyway, having only slept for less than 5 hours for the past few days, the prized item today was my bed, the thing I longed for, my queen size bed…. After having slept on a smaller than single bed, on the upper deck with little headroom on the ship, this was a great relief to me, and suddenly I felt and realized how blessed I am, which I actually never knew of cherishing until now.

And yes, all my dear colleagues out there, my dear cabin mates, I have a great time with you all, pardon our little differences and thanks for the guitar, it was a nice little time we have while we waited for our turns for the bathroom. And also the Taboo game and the silly game I taught you all “chop chilli chop chilli chop chop chop.” But wasn’t it great fun? And suddenly we were all back to childhood? And pal, watch out, don’t you dare show people all my funny shots!!!!! I will definitely from this day forth, lengthen the time of my smiles at you!

And all readers, pardon me, no picture today, as I am still a bit too tired even after a 2-hour nap. Will definitely post a picture soon this week! Good night!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Once Upon A Time

Who can shout, jump, run and even publicly display the most intimate behaviour without being ashamed or still remain oblivious to the onlookers?

The other day I was on the train on my way home, intending to spend the journey home catching a short nap, after securing a seat. Much to my dismay, before I could do that, I heard the loud conversation, almost shouting from 2 young sisters, age about 4 and 7 years old, swirling around poles, running from one end of the cabin to the other end, treating the cabin as a children’s playground. We, onlookers, all of a sudden, became props in this new found playground of theirs. As both parents are seated far apart, they try to catch their attention by shouting, being totally indifferent to the surrounding.

It was not too long before they finally gotten several empty seats, and the whole family sat down together. This was when the next outstanding scene took place. (In fact, during the entire trip, there was no dull moment, simply by watching them.) The sisters were obviously greatly in love with their parents especially their mom and vice versa. With no sense of awkwardness or uneasiness, they started displaying their love for their mom, trying to force kisses upon her.

For a moment, they were the stars on the train, everyone’s eyes were upon them, watching their every move and speech. Yet, the look displayed on every onlooker was not a look of disgust, but of envy and smiles, with me included as well.

It was truly a beautiful sight, a heart warming Kodak moment, perhaps almost unforgettable. Just then, a question popped up, when was the last time we did this to our own parents? It seemed so far away, almost like “once upon a time”, it must have taken place before.

And just a little sidetrack, isn’t this what Papa God wants us to be before Him, to be totally oblivious to our surroundings, with our eyes only on Him, He being our Person of interest, and Him alone? How difficult it seems at time for us to come to Him like that, yet it is easy when we start to see ourselves as His beloved little children, which in fact is what we really are in His eyes.

Monday, September 19, 2005

You Are Welcome

I am always glad to know that my dearest Shepherd is always with me especially now that I have moved into my new place. I just had a small cosy housewarming with my family members on Saturday, and then I realised my place is really quite small, it seems pretty crowded when all come home. Also, all my dear friends out there, not sure if any of you would want to come and visit, you are most welcome.
little lamb art

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Eventful Weeks

Last 2 weeks were truly eventful, and I do not wish to go through the same kind of schedule for the next 3 years if possible.

We did not employ any professional mover, anticipating that it should be pretty easy to move, since we did not have much furniture, only my computer and a 17 inch TV being my 2 biggest possessions. However, much to our miscalculation, all the smaller items, making up largely of books, clothes, toys, and other stuffs that we have never foreseen, were quite a large quantity, and that it actually took us more than a week to move them with my brother’s van, making an average of 2 to 3 trips a day, and perhaps 5 trips or more on the weekends.

On top of that, there was still the strenuous work of having to unpack, tidy up, and the unfortunate event of seeing my computer “homesick”. It actually “dieded” on me on 2 occasions even after repair, and that the technician had to come twice to attend to it. It must be seriously “homesick”, perhaps it will be soon for me to part with it, in a year’s time or so. Before that, I had to backup all the data and especially all my illustrations and mp3s.

Besides, it was also one of those extremely busy week at work, the week before last, when we were moving boxes over from the previous dwelling, that I was unable to attend to most of the moving, as several nights were spent in the office, rushing for presentation. An as soon as there was a free night, I got to make an effort to rush home to pack and unpack.

And then there were new emerging challenges, of getting used to the new place (for me is less but not so for my brother), sleeping on a new bed, meeting new neighbours. Most are well except for the neighbour’s “dirty” cat, which has the habit of urinating along the common corridor. I am not an animal hater, but I am definitely an environmentalist, being in the building line, especially against environmental pollutions of any kind. There are already “crazy” thoughts such as complaining to town council or even contemplating “extreme” measure of putting a “poisonous” fish outside my apartment, and if the cat “happened” to come over for its daily routine, that is it. (This is just a hypothetical thought, please do not take it seriously or use this to sue me, it is just a joke.)

And I really dislike wires now, wires of any kind, so many different machines and gadgets to fix, that I actually spent so many hours putting them together, even after reading all the manuals, etc, I could still get them wrong! Anyway, I just finished from a 4-hour long laborious war with hooking up the wires for my new dvd recorder and scv cable. I almost wanted to call up SCV to get them to send someone over to solve it, until I realized that I did not know how to use the remote control correctly. Now I have 4 remote controls on my TV console, it is really confusing, why couldn’t man simplify things? We have so many gadgets to do so little things, and Papa God is able to use so little things to do so many things! (To illustrate my point, refer to “Air” as an example.)

Yet in the midst of every cloud, there is always a silver lining or in another way of putting it, as I always say, “serendipity” event. Try to make a guess before you go on reading.

My long break is finally here, and the news of it came as a very pleasant surprise, and to be honest, I am extremely grateful to Papa God upon hearing the news. Remember a few journals ago, I was lamenting for a good break, and I was shocked how fast He answered my dream. I will be away for a 2 to 3 weeks break in October to November, many thanks to my boss. He was invited to attend a seminar in Italy, and since he was so busy, he actually recommended me go instead, what a blessing! And of course, when he asked me about it, how can I say “No”? And he had also graciously expressed that I could extend the stay on my own if I want. And why not? It was a part of the world that I never thought of going yet so soon, in such manner. Thanks, boss, you are the best, but I do not hope you will get to read this, just in case you get too puffed up. And sorry boss, for that 3 week leave I am applying, there may be quite a few things that you may have to handle personally while I am away.

And thank to Papa God for a co-worker pal who has kindly agreed to tour Italy with me. At first I was a bit apprehensive of traveling alone but not so now, with her around, thanks pal, I wonder how many times I have thanked you in my blog? You are a dear gift from God to me.

Meanwhile, from now till then, you will still see more of me here, in cyberspace.

Side track: I hope to bring along my sketch book and watercolor if they are not too heavy and be inspired, and hopefully use some of those sketches for the blog after that. Thanks again for you all, for always being so patient with me. By the way, what a long journal this is, you can see how much I missed it!

Thursday, September 15, 2005


I have finally settled into my new place. The past few days were really eventful, and I guess I would probably take the next blog, a proper journal to write about it. I am just updating a little now, just in case I lose all my friends and dear readers or "secret admirers" out there (Just a joke!), in case all of you think that I have given up on this blog.

So many things have happened, and I would just update on one, my computer was homesick, as the way my colleague has put it, and therefore it went to the hospital for treatment for 1 day, how I missed my computer, that I actually felt like "mourning" for it. I was intending to update my blog on Tuesday, after I have gotten my broadband on Monday. However, it just wouldn't start properly on Monday night, and there it went for servicing. Then I realise I must treat my computer with care, as it is already old, according to my computer surgeon, as the harddisk is considered old after 2 years.

As for the housewarming, I am not so sure, on the one hand, I wish to share my new home with dear ones, and on the other, I am really afraid of receiving more gifts, after I have forced myself to throw away quite a lot. Friends, forgive me, I have not much choice for throwing your gifts away, as all the new shelves are already exploding with stuffs. However, friends, if you would like to visit my place, drop me a line here, I am just "shy" to invite you directly. Definitely, I would hope to invite you all.

Pardon me for not posting any drawing today, as I have yet installed several of my essential programs. In fact, today, the moment I reached home, had my dinner and shower, I checked my emails (over 40 numbers) and am writing this blog now, so I believe all of you would understand, as I know you all are the most kind. I would definitely try to post a nice, wonderful blog this weekend, so stay tune. Thanks for being so patient and supportive of this blog. Thanks.