Friday, November 29, 2013

The 21 KM -- Dream

Two years ago, I ran my first ever 10KM Marathon making me able to tick off one item in my bucket list. 

Look how proud I am of my finisher medal :)
 I still have two items to tick off in that list in terms of my running career (ha ha ha); a 21KM and hopefully a full marathon someday.

This Sunday 1st December will the day for the 2013 Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore.  It is always a big running event of the year here in Singapore where thousands would participants in the different categories.  I have conquered the 10KM in 2011 with my best running buddy ever, the hubby.  I was hoping we could conquer the 21KM this year.  But as I am still in the running in one of the best races I have ever joined so far, motherhood, I guess my 21KM dream would have to take the backseat for now.

But hopefully in a year or two, when our dynamics of having to care for a little one will be more firmly establish, then the hubby and I could perhaps revisit this item in the bucket list and hopefully have it ticked! 

To my colleagues and friends who will be running this Sunday, all the best and have fun pounding the streets of Singapore.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


While I am from the Central Visayas, I am fortunate that though we felt the wrath of Yolanda, but we have been spared from her lashes. 

When I received news from home that they are all safe after Yolanda has passed by, I was relieved.  But when news, photos, videos start coming in Saturday afternoon of the devastation that Yolanda has brought to the affected areas…I was shocked.  The devastation is beyond words.

For Singapore based friends, if you would like to participate in the relief efforts; the Philippine embassy has disseminated the channels through which monetary donations could be immediately sent by Filipinos and friends in Singapore. 

Click on image above for details.

And to those who are packing relief goods, a copied post from a friend’s FB wall gives the following suggestion of items to pack.

To everyone who is actively participating in packing relief goods to be sent in Tacloban City/Leyte, please note of the following:

1.) DO NOT PACK NOODLES OR ANYTHING THAT NEEDS WATER. There is no water and electricity so it is impossible to consume this kind of food....

2.) PACK MEDICINES - most especially basic medicines (biogesic, bioflu, robitussin etc). Also if possible, include medicine for surface wounds as many have been wounded because of the debris and fallen rooftops.

3.) PACK AT LEAST ONE BOTTLE OF WATER. People are raging for water (some have even become violent just for water). There is no source of water at all at any part of Tacloban.

4.) PACK CANDLES AND MATCHES - there's no electricity for a minimum of two months so all people will need these.

5.) ENCOURAGE YOUR RESPECTIVE GROUP/ORGANIZATION TO DONATE BODYBAGS. Bodies are lying around the roads within the city and some of the places have already been filled up with bodies.

Why are there so many natural disasters?  Click on the link below to find out what the Bible says about these and the practical steps on how to cope when faced in this situation.   It also tells of a comforting message of hope when soon you can finally say “No more disasters!”

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Long Weekend - Cuteness Overload

My weekday starts today!  Well actually it officially started yesterday, but Tuesday I work from home so I still call it a week off albeit working. (Working in your night gown still feels like a holiday J)And since I did not have to go to work on Monday being Deepavali replacement holiday that fell on a Saturday, I had a long weekend I spent with the boys. 

It was pretty good.  We planned to have it lazy, but it turned out to be busy.  Busy in a good way.  I was able to plan the week’s menu, gone to the market and did the grocery.  We have attended the weekend service and participated as a family in the field ministry. 

We took the little munchkin to Orchard Road hoping to catch the glittery lights that they usually put up around this season.  The munchkin is now into anything glittery and shining lately.  Unfortunately, the lights are not up yet, so we spent the time just walking about and of course, me taking gazillion photos of the munchkin.

Cuteness Overload!!!

And yes, we also discovered that the munchkin has 2 emerging teeth.  The first time parents were so excited! J If only he would be still and cooperate for a minute I would have taken a photo of his new little teeth.

So along with cuteness overload, I had a some side dish of cheesiness too.  Posted these two captions in my FB page.  

Ahhh to be in love and cheesy J

Hope you all had a good long weekend too!  Here’s to a fruitful week everyone!

Friday, November 1, 2013

New month...November, What Will I do to make you the most productive month of 2013?

The hubby asked me last night 5 words to describe my October.
  • Challenging
  • Frustrating
  • Tiring
  • Stressful
  • But Still Amazing (I have the little munchkin to thank….oh well let’s include the big gorilla too ;))

It’s the start of a new month, and the stress is already brewing in everything I do.  But this month of November, I intend to make it different.  While the challenges and the stress are inevitable in any given month (considering the multiple roles we play every day) I intend to replace “Frustrating” and “Tiring” with “Productive” and “Enjoyable”.  So for this Month of November, I have chosen “PRODUCTIVE” as my guiding word.    Sometime back, I applied this concept of guiding word and that time I have chosen gratitude, and I find it very effective.  Alright, I digress ;) …now back to Productivity.
And how do I intend to do that? That’s a good question. I actually don’t know where to start so I have listed and identified the steps I have to take and here they are.

FOCUS.  I was happily pinning yesterday when I stumbled upon an idea.  And I think it’s a great idea, something I can go and enhance for long term benefit.  I wanted to rush to the nearest DIY/Craft store and execute and plunge into my “brilliant” idea.  But I realized I still have an unfinished project that I have started, so I have to complete it before I move on.  So I will FOCUS on that first and see results.  Result = Productive.  Hopefully, by completing this unfinished project this month, this would teach me the discipline and focus to kick-off my “brilliant” idea next month.

And this goes to everything I do be it work or play.  Focus on one thing; see it to completion and on to the next task or activity.

Build extra hours into my day.  The days are long but the hours are few.  Huh?  Yes, I find that my days can be draggingly long but I find there is so little time to accomplish much.  By having extra hours in my day would spell a whole lot of productivity.  This month, I am starting my day an hour earlier and ending it an hour later.  That’s an extra two hours per day.

I intend to take care of myself and ensure the boys are in the pink of health.  Last month, the hubby was down with flu and the little munchkin caught the bug.  Having someone in the family get sick is quite overwhelming.  It puts a dent to our household dynamics.  An overwhelmed feeling saps out my energy.  Listless, lifeless are definitely deterrents to productivity.  This month, we intend to keep ourselves healthy by clean eating, right amount of rest, and regularly physical activity.  A healthy body and mind is a productive person.

With my goals for this month in place and with the above-mentioned steps to help me accomplish those goals, well here’s to a productive November!

How about you, how do you keep your day/month/year your most productive ever?
Share your tips on the comments, would love to hear from you.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Eureka! a love for baking

Wish someday I could capture a similar photo with me and my munchkin.
Oh how food can be so nostalgic. It takes you to a time and place where your heart is.

My mom cooks the most delectable dishes and bakes the yummiest goodies.  And no; I am not saying it as a patronizing daughter.  You should try any of her signature dishes and you will know what I mean.

Back when I was still a little girl, I remember mama always used to bake those lovely pastries and cakes.  I could still smell the aroma of a freshly baked cake fresh out of the oven.  And those "buko" pie topped with just the right sweetness meringue was my all time favorite.

As a little girl when my height was just barely able to reach our kitchen counter top, I would tiptoe so I can see how mama would beat the eggs and shift the flour. I would appoint myself as her assistant.   The best part was that while the cake is baking or the cookies are cooling on the cooling rack, I would happily lick the the sweet batter or the icing from the mixing bowl.  What an assistant!

Though I certainly have not reach my mother's level of competence in the baking arena,  nor do I have any signature dishes in my belt, I do recently discovered I love to cook and bake.  And like all mom's, I hope that some little part of what I do will be remembered affectionately by my children  son.

Or perhaps a family tradition would be born out of this new found passion.  Baking Sunday or perhaps Saturday brunch cooking with Mom....

Let me share with you what we have whipped up this weekend.  Chewy oatmeal bars...Not quite there yet, but will get there in time :)
oatmeal bars

Baked Oatmeal Bars (Recipe)

3 Cups rolled oats
1 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 eggs
1/2 cup melted butter
3/4 cup dried cranberries

1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees (175 C degrees)
2. In a large bowl, mix together oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt.  Beat eggs, milk and melted butter.  Add vanilla extract.  Stir in dried cranberries.  Spread into 9X13 inch baking dish.
3. Bake in preheated over for 40 min.
4. Cool and sliced into bars.

This is yummy with black coffee or tea perhaps.

Happy baking!!!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

If ever I could own a house...

I have been in Pinterest for quite some time now, but I have recently discovered the joys of pinning.  Indeed a picture paints a thousand words.  And with that I am inspired to be a home-owner :)  A girl can dream you know.

If I could ever own a house

I will strive to make it our home.

With big closets…

And a lovely kitchen…

A welcoming foyer with a touch of Country Charm…

And a place for everything and everything in it’s a place….

A bath so lovely, taking a bath will always be a spa-like experience….
A his and her bathroom sink will be an added bonus.

And white picket fences would be a lovely addition  J

Ahhhh the joys of dreaming.

What about you, how do you picture a beautiful, relaxing home?

*All pictures taken from

Thursday, October 3, 2013

How to consciously live life to the fullest?

Last Tuesday, 1st October, I was about to post in my Facebook status “Zombie mode – wake me up when mid-November comes”.  But I pulled back.  My life mantra is what my blog header says “is on a journey to consciously live life to the fullest.”  And the idea of being in zombie mode definitely goes against the ideals I want to resonate in my life.

Living consciously is about taking control of your life.  Sleepwalking through life is definitely not taking control.  But most of the time, it is easier for us to set our lives in autopilot mode.  Do what we always do because we are used to it. It’s easier that way even if we have difficult chaotic lives.  It’s familiar.  It is never easy to break out of routines.

Yes it easy to cruise through life. But conscious living is living in the now.  It’s about taking time to smell the roses and be aware of your life and things that you are doing.

It gives us an understanding on what’s going around us and paving the way for us to get to where we want to go.  It allows us to expand our horizons.  It gives more passion into our relationships.  It makes our world more vibrant and colorful.  It creates a life that is more fun.  And who would not want that kind of life?

Living consciously is not a change you can do overnight.  It’s a journey with so many roadblocks and you will definitely have setbacks along the way.  I am on that journey and I am having my fair share of roadblocks and setbacks.
So how does one live a life of consciously living it to the fullest?  I have no definite answer.  It takes effort, and willful vigilance.  As what my cousin would often quote “let’s grab the bull by the horns”. Not an easy feat I should say, but it will definitely be a life well-lived.  And this is my work in progress.

So instead of sleeping the whole of October and half of November, I'm upping my oomph!  Well, hello there October! :)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Staycation @ Marina Bay Sands Hotel

September is anniversary month for hubby and I.  We wanted to have a quick getaway, but to save us the hassle of flying or “floating” with a little one in tow, we opted for a staycation.  We’ll after all; we celebrated our first anniversary with a staycation in Hard Rock hotel which I have talked about here.  So probably, we can make this a yearly tradition of staycations during our anniversary month.  Now that’s something we can look forward too.

As we have been eyeing Marina Bay Sands for quite sometime now, so this year, we chose to finally give in for an MBS experience.
hubby enjoying the infinity pool
Check in time for MBS is 3 pm, so we made use of the half day to kick off our staycation weekend by bringing the little one to his weekly baby spa at Yishun North Point.  
swimming @ the babyspa
The little one got tired after his swim.  He did not get to have his massage after because he was so sleepy already.
tired after my swim

We had a lunch at SWENSENS, before we head off to Marina Bay Sands. 
Fish and Chips
Chicken breast...they look the same :)
Gold Rush, my favorite :)

We arrived at MBS around 3:00 pm and the place was packed with people especially tourists who were probably just us curious as us to check out the MBS hotel.
waiting for our turn at the check-in counter
The room was like any other standard hotel room.  
little one getting comfy on the bed
But we get a good view of the Garden's by the Bay.  And the so many boats/ships lining Singapore sea (or do you call it coastline? :) grammar patrol help! ).
view from the top :)
What I love most was the bathroom.  I always love hotel bathrooms.  I often wish that someday I would have a bathroom similar to one of those hotels I have stayed in, but with the more cozy and homely decor.
bathtub love!
Yay! to double sinks.  His and her...
And or course the highlight of any MBS hotel stay would be the infinity pool.  The water was quite cold, but when you begin to wade and swim, the water's coldness would no longer bother you anymore.
he's just getting warmed up....
For hotel guest, they give you free access to the sky park. For the general public, you can visit the sky park for a fee for 20 SGD. (That's was two years ago, is it still the same fee?)

So we took advantage of this additional perk, and was rewarded by celebrity sighting.  We saw WWF Bokker T.  I don't know him but hubby did and he had their picture taken with him.
celebrity sightings!!!
But the real celebrity I think was this little fellow.  He was a hit to a few western mothers (I think they are either mothers/grandmothers because they find a little baby adorable:).  They even have his picture taken.
the real celebrity!
look mom, tiny matchboxes...can we take them home??? pretty pretty please!
We did went to the sky park again at night and the view was amazing.  I did not post some pictures here, as our camera phone did not do any justice to the view.

We did some window shopping and picture taking in the Shoppes by the Bay and in the hotel lobby.
hotel lobby interior

We had our dinner at The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Bistro.  No photo of what we ate as our camera phone's battery died on us.

After a few more hours window shopping, we called it a day.  The next morning we then took the opportunity to have our last MBS infinity pool experience before we  had breakfast at ToastBox and headed home.

However, there are some downside of the hotel's amenities though worth mentioning.  I do not like the idea of automatic private bar charges.  Ok, its hi-tech, but if they do that, at least they provide another fridge storage.  Think breastfeeding moms and little ones who need to make use of fridge storage.
at least provide some place  I can store my baby's food...
I just want to read the bottle's label first before I decide if I want to drink it or not...
And you are charging me for that???
And I also wonder why they have to hide their tea/coffee set.  At least they should have displayed it nicely to enhance the homely feel of the hotel room.  We had to open all drawers to look for the electric kettle for us to boil water.

But all in all, it was a good one time experience.  A bit pricey I should say, but after all we have to pay for good experiences right?

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Happy baby...healthy heart

ECG or echocardiogram is a test that uses sound waves to create moving pictures of your heart. The pictures show the size and shape of your heart. They also show how well your heart's chambers and valves are working.

When our doctor referred us to a pediatric cardiologist because Little One has slight heart murmurings, my reaction was like that of any other mother would have had...I was scarred, anxious and apprehensive to have my boy undergo the test.  But the doctor assured us that we should not worry too much because the heart murmuring could just be blood flowing which is quite normal for young babies.  But considering LO's background, undergoing the test would ensure our peace of mind.

We were referred to Kidslink Child Clinic who has a pediatrician who has Special Interest in Paeditric Cardiology.  I called the clinic to make an appointment.  After the appointment, I "googled" on what to expect during an ECG test.

Echocardiograms are considered very safe, and generally require no special preparation.  Its a simple, painless way for doctors to investigate possible symptoms of a heart problem exhibited by your baby. Armed with that knowledge, still i was not pacified.

We were 45 minutes early for our appointment.  I was thinking that we should be early so that LO would have time to settle down and relax so that it would not affect his test results.  I don't know whether there is any scientific basis to my theory though ;)  Then when it was our turn he was weighed and measured and then we were asked to bring him to the doctor's room where he was examined.  Dr. Heng Joo Teck was quite positive. He  reassured us that he doesn't hear anything that would cause our concern.  But still he recommended that we go on with the test.

Miguel did very well during the test.  He did not moved that much which is quite surprising :). He was very cooperative that time. We dress him with button down shirt for easy access.  And we did not apply oil on his body (which normally we would after every bath).

The rest of the ECG test was very similar to my sonogram when I was pregnant.  After jelly is applied to the chest, the doctor slides the probe around to get pictures of the baby's heart.  He even examined his tummy area.

There is a monitor where you will see pictures of the baby's heart on the screen as the echocardiogram is performed.  And well, if you are as "crazy" as me, you may be searching for any signs of problem and jumping to conclusions even if you have no idea what a normal or abnormal heart would look like.  I also from time to time would look at the doctor to see any signs of concern in his face.  I was hardly breathing, that hubby had to squeeze my arm and jokingly say that  if I continue to hold my breath, I would be the next one to be examined.  After several minutes, which for me was like eternity, the doctor finally said it was over.

He gave as a smile and said everything is normal.  Then that's the time I started breathing normally again. And little one is innocently blabbering as we dress him up.

We got the result on the same day. I tried to read what the results says.  Ventricles, Aorta, Artery, Atrioventricular valves and some I cannot even read was written on the piece of paper.  I really don't know what those foreign sounding terms are and for now I actually don't what to know.  What I was interested in was the world "Normal" besides every foreign sounding heart part.

As what my mother told me, nothing is impossible in prayers.

I am a very happy mom.  I have a happy baby, with a healthy heart.  What more as parents can we ask for? :)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Life happens...

I have promised myself that I would not give any excuses why I haven’t updated my blog.  It’s over a month since my last entry.  So instead of ranting on why I haven’t even dropped by to say hi and ho, well I can only say one thing…Life happens 

I often read successful bloggers say that just go out there and live your life so you have something to blog about.  I guess I took the advice way to seriously, I went out there and live my/our life, however I forgot the part on seating down and writing about how amazing it went. 

So to recap these  are the happenings that have transpired since last mid July.

The little one went for his out of town trip and rode the coach to Malacca Malaysia.  It’s a good 3 to 4 hours drive and he was behaved most of the time.  5 stars for him…
Little one on the way to Malacca
Malacca has more than 500 years of history. It was one of the oldest Malay Sultanate. Its unique historical background means unique local cuisine too, with Peranakan food and Portuguese food.  I would try to feature it in one of my features posts. 

After a 3 day stay in Malacca, we enjoyed the long weekend in Singapore because of the Hari Raya and National Day celebration.  

So my little family took the opportunity and rode the World’s Largest Observation Wheel.  The Singapore Flyer.
Family picture at the World's Largest Giant Observation Wheel
Then off we went to Garden’s by the Bay…
Garden's by the Bay
And before the long weekend winds down, we took the little one to the Chinese Garden, where he was all smiles. 

Happy baby at Chinese Garden
 I guess we have an outdoorsy young man in the making here.

In between all these happenings, well there was the laundry, cooking, ironing and all those stuff.  Plus work and family time, outing and invites of friends and family worship time (Make God the center of your family)

Love your work, and you don't have to work a single day in your life...
inviting positive vibes for the career  Yahoo!!! ;) 

One of the cheaper things to do in Singapore! Picnic at the park.
Quality time spent with family....

Bible reading time, digital style with the little one...

Can't wait to have a real dip soon!!!

Nightlife with friends at McDonald's (East Coast Park)

Whew! Life happens ….. And if I may quote Kung Fu Panda  It’s “Awesome!!!!”

How about you, how’s life lately?

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