Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A short clip worth watching

This heart tugging clip arrived in my inbox today. Just wanted to share it with all you beautiful souls as well. We are truly blessed indeed. Have a splendid week.


Sunday, September 6, 2009

Why try?

I've not been faithful with my postings lately. And I would tell you why. I've started working for a firm where they deal with "at risk" students. These are students who are about to be expelled due to their much "commendable" conduct. I'm not going to lie here. This job is emotionally and physically draining yet it's also gratifying in its own way. I could so relate to these students. They are crying out for help by acting out. It's so easy for us, the adults, to negatively label them for their boisterous, rebellious, hardcore actions. But how many of us make an attempt to understand where they are coming from; what causes them to act in such ways; what is their background like. I will remember this particular student forever. He is 14 years old. His dad was hung for murder and his mum is in prison. He has been sent to a boys' home. He has been labeled as the hardcore rebel who has no hope by his teachers. However, during my sessions with him, this is what I have observed. He is a refined, sensible, matured young man. He gives respect to those who treat him with mutual respect. He is very encouraging when I'm feeling helpless. Yes, I do feel helpless when I'm not able to reach out to the kids. When all they do is curse and swear, I feel like throwing in the towel. But his encouragement has pulled me through. He even advised me to read the book on "emo" ... lol. For all those of you who do not know what emo is ... it means emotional in the teenage lingo. I do miss his friendship. I would not be able to see him anymore because my session with him ended last Friday. Knowing my nurturing personality, my employers warned me not to exchange any contact info with him. I wish this young man all the best and he has definitely been one of the best teachers I have ever come across. I would not be coming here often as I am pretty tied down with this new challenge in life. But trust me, when I do have the time to let my hair down, this would be one of the venues I would be heading to. Till then, you guys take care and have an amazing life.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Start writing your own future

The following story came to me in nick of time when I started questioning myself on my past. It was inevitably easy to blame myself for all the painful episodes that had taken place before.But this story made me sit up and realise that none of it was my fault. It was meant to be. Those painful consequences have transformed and moulded me into what I am today. So I thank my bitter past for giving me a better present and a much beautiful future. This is what I learnt from this story. The past may not be my fault, but the future is my responsibility alone. Enjoy reading :)

One evening a young woman went alone to walk barefoot by the ocean after the sun had set. She stopped in her path and turned so she could see the footsteps she had left in the sand. But they had already been washed away by the waves. When she turned to continue her walk, she was startled by the presence of an old woman wrapped in a blanket who out of nowhere appeared sitting by a fire, slowly paging through the leaves of a leather covered book.

She walked up to the woman and asked. "Where did you come from? I didn't see you here a moment ago. And how did you start this fire so quickly?"

Her questions went unanswered but were instead met with a reply in a serene voice, "Sit with me, child. I have something to show you."

As the young woman sat down beside the fire, the mysterious stranger handed her the book. She curiously turned the pages one by one and was amazed to discover they contained the story of her whole life from the early days of childhood to the present. She then came to the page telling of her encounter with the old woman by the fire during her walk on the beach, but upon turning to the next page, she found it empty. She frantically began to turn the rest of the pages in the book only to find that they, too, were all empty. In bewilderment, she looked to the old woman and pleaded with her to explain.

"Does this mean my life ends this night?"

"No, my child. It means tonight your life begins."

At that moment the old woman took the book into her own hands and began to tear out each of the pages with words, throwing them one by one into the fire until all that was left were blank pages.

She handed the book of empty pages to the young woman.

"You see," she said, "just as the waves washed away your footsteps in the sand, your past is forever gone, never to return. The only moment you ever truly possess is here and now. Each new moment is the beginning of the rest of your life and is to be lived to the fullest, for you will not have a chance to live that moment a second time. Most important of all, each new day brings an opportunity to love--one that may never come to you again.

"As for your future, you are free to shape it as you wish, for it has not yet been written."

Then, as mysteriously as she had appeared, the old woman stood to walk away and disappeared into the darkness of the night.

The above story is one of 25 lessons written in allegorical form in the book "For Love or Nothing - Lessons to Illuminate the Path to Love" by William Oak.

Thank You For All the Lovely Comments :)

I have been badly hit by a flu bug for the last one week.Hope to recover soon.Thank you for all your comments.Karla,thank you so much for the beautiful wishes. Wanted to wish you on your special day so badly but couldnt :(. But its better late than never. So here its goes: HAPPY BIRTHDAY KARLA :)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Length of Our Lives Vs Its Width and Depth

“We cannot do much about the length of our lives; but we can do plenty about its width and depth”. Evan Esara

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Meet Oogy

Love comes in many different packages—even in the form of a lovable pet! For Larry and his family, love came in the form of a dog named Oogy.

When he was just a puppy, Larry says Oogy was living in a hell on earth. He was tied to a stake and used as bait for pit bulls in a dogfighting ring. "He basically had the side of his face ripped off, his jaw was crushed, his skull was damaged," says veterinarian Dr. Bianco. "He's lucky to be alive."

Larry and his twin boys were at the vet to drop off their cat when Oogy walked down the hall…and right into their hearts. "He looked like part of him had melted," Larry says. "But he just covered us with kisses. It's like he didn't know that anything bad had happened to him—he was just full of love. He jumped in our arms."

When Larry found out the dog didn't belong to anyone, he asked Dr. Bianco if he could adopt him. "I couldn't believe my good luck," Larry says. "That's how I felt about this dog right from the start."

Oogy was given a loving home, but he still had an agonizing road to recovery. A second major surgery was necessary to rebuild Oogy's face and put an end to his chronic pain. "I think that every day my family tries to atone for what happened to Oogy. He's been through the worst imaginable horrors, and we feel very lucky because of what he gives back to us—an immeasurable amount of devotion and love."

Larry's twin sons, Noah and Dan, have something special in common with Oogy—they were also adopted. "I'm sure when our parents adopted us, I hope it was one of the greatest days of their lives. And I know in my life, my experience when we adopted [Oogy], it was one of the greatest days of my life," Dan says.

Although Noah and Dan will be off to college soon, Larry plans to make sure Oogy still gets plenty of attention. "One of the things I want to do for Oogy is train him to work with kids and take him to kid's hospitals, because I think he'll be an inspiration to young kids who are facing a lot of adversity," Larry says.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Calling All Animal Lovers

The Animal Rescue Site is having trouble getting enough people to click on it daily so they can meet their quota of getting FREE FOOD donated every day to abused and neglected animals. It takes less than a minute (about 15 seconds) to go to their site and click on the purple box 'fund food for animals for free'. This doesn't cost you a thing.

Their corporate sponsors/advertisers use the number of daily visits to donate food to abandoned/neglected animals in exchange for advertising.

Here's the web site! Please pass it along to people you know.


p.s: We have checked the authenticity of this site to make sure it is not a scam.Thankfully its not so lets do our part today.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Last weekend, hubby and I rented the movie Doubt, starring Philip Seymour and Meryl Streep. Excellent casting. Powerful acting by both dynamic actors. There is one scene that has most impacted me. Father Flynn's (Philip Seymour)sermon on gossip. Here it is:

A woman was gossiping with a friend about a man she hardly knew - I know none of you have ever done this - that night she had a dream. A great hand appeared over her and pointed down at her. She was immediately seized with an overwhelming sense of guilt. The next day she went to confession. She got the old parish priest, Father O’Rourke, and she told him the whole thing.

‘Is gossiping a sin?’ she asked the old man. ‘Was that the hand of God Almighty pointing a finger at me? Should I be asking your absolution? Father, tell me, have I done something wrong?’

‘Yes!’ Father O’Rourke answered her. ‘Yes, you ignorant, badly brought up female! You have borne false witness against your neighbor, you have played fast and loose with his reputation, and you should be heartily ashamed!’

So the woman said she was sorry and asked for forgiveness.

‘Not so fast!’ says O’Rourke. ‘I want you to go home, take a pillow up on your roof, cut it open with a knife, and return here to me!’

So the woman went home, took a pillow off her bed, a knife from the drawer, went up the fire escape to the roof, and stabbed the pillow. Then she went back to the old parish priest as instructed.

‘Did you gut the pillow with the knife?’ he says.

‘Yes, Father.’

‘And what was the result?’

‘Feathers,’ she said.

‘Feathers?’ he repeated.

‘Feathers everywhere, Father!’

‘Now I want you to go back and gather up every last feather that flew out on the wind!’

‘Well,’ she said, ‘it can’t be done. I don’t know where they went. The wind took them all over.’

‘And that,’ said Father O’Rourke, ‘is GOSSIP!’

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Are You a Bucket-Filler or a Dipper?

Author Unknown, Source Unknown

You have heard of the cup that overflowed. This is a story of a bucket that is like the cup, only larger, it is an invisible bucket. Everyone has one. It determines how we feel about ourselves, about others, and how we get along with people. Have you ever experienced a series of very favorable things which made you want to be good to people for a week? At that time, your bucket was full.

A bucket can be filled by a lot of things that happen. When a person speaks to you, recognizing you as a human being, your bucket is filled a little. Even more if he calls you by name, especially if it is the name you like to be called. If he compliments you on your dress or on a job well done, the level in your bucket goes up still higher. There must be a million ways to raise the level in another's bucket. Writing a friendly letter, remembering something that is special to him, knowing the names of his children, expressing sympathy for his loss, giving him a hand when his work is heavy, taking time for conversation, or, perhaps more important, listing to him.

When one's bucket is full of this emotional support, one can express warmth and friendliness to people. But, remember, this is a theory about a bucket and a dipper. Other people have dippers and they can get their dippers in your bucket. This, too, can be done in a million ways.

Lets say I am at a dinner and inadvertently upset a glass of thick, sticky chocolate milk that spills over the table cloth, on a lady's skirt, down onto the carpet. I am embarrassed. "Bright Eyes" across the table says, "You upset that glass of chocolate milk." I made a mistake, I know I did, and then he told me about it! He got his dipper in my bucket! Think of the times a person makes a mistake, feels terrible about it, only to have someone tell him about the known mistake ("Red pencil" mentality!)

Buckets are filled and buckets are emptied ? emptied many times because people don't really think about what are doing. When a person's bucket is emptied, he is very different than when it is full. You say to a person whose bucket is empty, "That is a pretty tie you have," and he may reply in a very irritated, defensive manner.

Although there is a limit to such an analogy, there are people who seem to have holes in their buckets. When a person has a hole in his bucket, he irritates lots of people by trying to get his dipper in their buckets. This is when he really needs somebody to pour it in his bucket because he keeps losing.

The story of our lives is the interplay of the bucket and the dipper. Everyone has both. The unyielding secret of the bucket and the dipper is that when you fill another's bucket it does not take anything out of your own bucket. The level in our own bucket gets higher when we fill another's, and, on the other hand, when we dip into another's bucket we do not fill our own ... we lose a little.

For a variety of reasons, people hesitate filling the bucket of another and consequently do not experience the fun, joy, happiness, fulfillment, and satisfaction connected with making another person happy. Some reasons for this hesitancy are that people think it sounds "fakey," or the other person will be suspicious of the motive, or it is "brown-nosing."

Therefore, let us put aside our dipper and resolve to touch someone's life in order to fill their bucket.

Friday, July 10, 2009

For All You Cookie Lovers Out There

An interesting email was forwarded to me by my cousin today. I think its a hoax but we don't have anything to lose by trying out the recipe...do we!Here's the email.If you do ever try the recipe out, please let me know how it turned out.I would love to know if the $250 was worth it after all ;).

Neiman-Marcus, if you don't know already, is a very expensive boutique shop (they sell a typical $8.00 T-shirt for $50.00)

My daughter and I had just finished lunch at a Neiman-Marcus Cafe in Dallas , USA . Because both of us are such biscuit lovers, we decided to try the 'Neiman-Marcus cookie'. It was so excellent that I asked if they would give me the recipe. The waitress said with a small frown, 'I'm afraid not, but you can buy the recipe.'

I asked how much, and she responded; 'Only two fifty - it's a great deal'. I agreed to that, and told her to add it to my bill.

Thirty days later, I got my Visa statement, and the Neiman-Marcus charge was $285. I looked at it again, and I remembered I had only spent $9.95 for two sandwiches and about $20 for a scarf. At the bottom of the statement, it said, 'Cookie Recipe - $250.00'. That was outrageous!

I called Neiman's Accounting Department and told them the waitress had said it was 'two fifty', which clearly does not mean 'two hundred and fifty dollars' by any reasonable interpretation of the phrase.. Neiman-Marcus refused to budge. They would not refund my money because according to them; 'What the waitress told you is not our problem. You have already seen the recipe. We absolutely will not refund your money.

I explained to the Accounting Department lady the criminal statutes which govern fraud in the state of Texas. I threatened to report them to the Better Business Bureau and The Texas Attorney General's office. I was basically told: Do what you want. Don't bother thinking of how you can get even, and don't bother trying to get any of your money back'

I said, OK, you've got my $250, and now I'm going to have $250 worth of fun. I told her that I was going to see to it that every cookie lover in the world with an e-mail account gets a $250 cookie recipe from Neiman-Marcus for free. She replied, 'I wish you wouldn't do that.' I said, 'Well, perhaps you should have thought of that before you RIPPED ME OFF!' and slammed down the phone.

So here it is! Please pass it on to everyone you can possibly think of. I paid $250 for this, and I don't want Neiman-Marcus to EVER make another penny from this recipe!

NEIMAN-MARCUS COOKIES (Recipe may be halved as this makes heaps)

2 (500 ml) cups butter
680 g chocolate chips
4 (1000 ml) cups flour
2 (500 ml) cups brown sugar
2 tsp. (10 ml) Bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp. (5 ml) salt
2 (500 ml) cups sugar
500 g Grated Cadbury chocolate
5 (1250 ml) cups blended oatmeal
4 eggs
2 tsp. (10 ml) baking powder
2 tsp. (10 ml) vanilla
3 cups (375 ml) chopped nuts (optional)

Measure oatmeal, and blend in a blender to a fine powder. Cream the butter and both sugars. Add eggs and vanilla, mix together with flour, oatmeal, salt, baking powder, and bicarbonate of soda. Add chocolate chips, grated Chocolate and nuts. Roll into balls, and place two inches apart on a cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes at 375 degrees (180 C).

The above quantities make 112 cookies. Enjoy!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

When Will They Ever Stop???????????????

The dog, known as Kiwi, was believed to have been hurt by metal traps set for wild boars . A vet had to amputate the remainder of its leg. According to Gandhi, the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated. What do such inhumane, ruthless acts say about my nation I wonder!!!!!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Love A Dog For Who He Is!

Recently, a report I read in the paper left me sick in my stomach. A barbaric, ruthless, heartless creature, in the form of a human of course, tied up a beautiful pomeranian (photo above), in a plastic bag and dumped him near a rubbish bin to die. Luckily, this fortunate soul was discovered in time by a smart husky. He was found motionless by the husky's owner, covered in poo and pee. This dog is a true survivor and a fighter cus he is alive and kicking now, waiting to be adopted by numerous kindred souls who were taken in by his plight. Kudos to the husky and its owner. You guys deserve a standing ovation. As for this beautiful, traumatized soul, I wish him a speedy recovery and may he find a home where he is showered with heaps of love, care, bliss and lets not forget respect....respect for all lives....regardless how big or small.

This is for all you heartless morons out there.

Judge not a dog for how he looks, for like humans, they outgrow their cuteness and child like antics.

Judge not his lineage, be it a champion's bloodline, or a mongrel's humble beginnings.

His past doesn't matter, his future does. Love a dog from your heart, not from society's standards.

A dog symbolizes loyalty, love, faithfulness and friendship. He does not represent status, affluence, beauty or your ego.

A dog is happy with himself. He doesn't need anything to improve his standings among his peers. We all can learn a thing or two from them.

Look not with your eyes but feel with your heart, the soul of a dog, his trust, his affection, his loyalty, his total surrender.

Treasure them, for you will find these qualities scarce amongst us.

Love a dog for who he is, because he loves you for who you are, unconditionally and without expectations.

My parting line to you barbarians, what goes around comes around. Thats what we call KARMA.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

My Reflections on India

India is a land filled with richness. Richness in tradition; culture; spirituality and above all, resilience, the everlasting human spirit that is conveyed in the form of smiles. Every single minute, you could see the people drowning in poverty.Not having proper sandals to wear in the unbearable scorching heat. We had to remove our footwear to enter the holy sites and boy did I sprint for my life. It was above 40 degrees and it felt like I was walking on fire. Yet these resilient souls walked calmly, barefoot, without a cringe. Maybe they were immune or shall I say accustomed to all these hardships. But what did not fail to catch my attention was the bliss. The bliss they had on their faces. These are souls who do not even have a proper roof over their heads.They either live by the roadsides in small tents or in dilapidated slums. If you have seen Slumdog Millionaire, you would know what I'm talking about.

There was one particular soul who tugged my heart strings. He was around 7 or 8. When he approached me, I thought he was a tout,trying to harass me for money. But I was so wrong. All he wanted was a notepad and a pen to write. His family doesn't have the means to send him to school. He had the burning desire to study and that could be seen in his eyes.

What was a real awakening was the fact that these souls are deeply embedded in poverty and yet they are able to smile from the bottom of their hearts despite their daily battles with life. The bliss they were expressing among themselves was definitely not a facade. It was a heartfelt genuine contentment that they showed. We, on the other hand, the ones from the developed nations, who are living a materialistic life, cant be easily contented. Why is that so? Are we really blessed or cursed? That burning question has been on my mind ever since.

I'm Bacccccccck

Finally, I'm back. Feeling much settled in life at this point in time. No dramas. No emotional stress. A much deserved "ME" time is here finally. Just returned from a mindblowing trip in India. It was spiritually charging and enlightening. It really feels great to be back. Thank you to all for leaving your comments behind despite my much obvious absence. I appreciate it deeply. Hope everything is fine with all of you. We have lots of catching up to do :).

Sunday, April 26, 2009

To A Special You!

Your presence is a present to the world.
You are unique and one of a kind.
Your life can be what you want it to be.
Take the days just one at a time.

Count your blessings, not your troubles.
You will make it through whatever comes along.
Within you are so many answers.
Understand, have courage, be strong.

Do not put limits on yourself.
So many dreams are waiting to be realized.
Decisions are too important to leave to chance.
Reach for your peak, your goal and you prize.

Nothing wastes more energy than worrying.
The longer one carries a problem the heavier it gets.
Do not take things too seriously.
Live a life of serenity, not a life of regrets.

Remember that a little love goes a long way.
Remember that a lot … goes forever.
Remember that friendship is a wise investment.
Life’s treasure are people together.

Realize that it is never too late.
Do ordinary things in an extraordinary way.
Have hearth and hope and happiness.
Take the time to wish upon a start.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Keep The Faith!

On a long journey of human life, faith is the best of companions;
it is the best refreshment on the journey; and it is the greatest property.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Dont We All?

I was parked in front of the mall wiping off my car. I had just come from the car wash and was waiting for my wife to get out of work. Coming my way from across the parking lot was what society would consider a bum. From the looks of him, he had no car, no home, no clean clothes, and no money. There are times when you feel generous but there are other times that you just don't want to be bothered. This was one of those "don't want to be bothered times."

"I hope he doesn't ask me for any money," I thought. He didn't. He came and sat on the curb in front of the bus stop but he didn't look like he could have enough money to even ride the bus. After a few minutes he spoke. "That's a very pretty car," he said. He was ragged but he had an air of dignity around him. His scraggly blond beard keep more than his face warm. I said, "thanks," and continued wiping off my car.

He sat there quietly as I worked. The expected plea for money never came. As the silence between us widened something inside said, "ask him if he needs any help." I was sure that he would say "yes" but I held true to the inner voice. "Do you need any help?" I asked. He answered in three simple but profound words that I shall never forget. We often look for wisdom in great men and women. We expect it from those of higher learning and accomplishments. I expected nothing but an outstretched grimy hand.

He spoke the three words that shook me. "Don't we all?" he said. I was feeling high and mighty, successful and important, above a bum in the street, until those three words hit me like a twelve gauge shotgun. Don't we all? I needed help. Maybe not for bus fare or a place to sleep, but I needed help. I reached in my wallet and gave him not only enough for bus fare, but enough to get a warm meal and shelter for the day. Those three little words still ring true. No matter how much you have, no matter how much you have accomplished, you need help too. No matter how little you have, no matter how loaded you are with problems, even without money or a place to sleep, you can give help.

Even if it's just a compliment, you can give that. You never know when you may see someone that appears to have it all. They are waiting on you to give them what they don't have. A different perspective on life, a glimpse at something beautiful, a respite from daily chaos, that only you through a torn world can see.

Maybe the man was just a homeless stranger wandering the streets. Maybe he was more than that. Maybe he was sent by a power that is great and wise, to minister to a soul too comfortable in themselves. Maybe God looked down, called an Angel, dressed him like a bum, then said, "go minister to that man cleaning the car, that man needs help."

Don't we all?

-Author Unknown

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Winds of Grace

" The winds of grace are always blowing, but you have to raise the sail."


Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Word Magic

During my trip, I was reading this book 'The Unmistakable Touch of Grace' where the author talks about word magic. It is a prophetic game whereby the visitor holds a question in mind while several colored spheres circle around the page to the sound of calming music. Then, when ready, the visitor clicks on a sphere to reveal a word that represents the answer. It is all in the name of fun. This is the website: www.innerworldmedia.com. Click on word magic on the navigation bar. For some bizzare reason, I keep on getting the word perseverance. Now, the chances of getting the same word over and over again is pretty slim because there are more than seventy-five words available to be assigned to a sphere at any given moment and the words were assigned at random with each visit. So, isnt it weird that I'm given the same word every time I click on the spheres?And for all you curious souls out there, my question was obviously related to pregnancy.Looks like we have to keep on trying. Lets PERSEVERE!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Back from a magical trip

We returned from our trip yesterday. We had such a fabulous time in Shanghai. It was a challenging trip in its own way. Foreigners are called 'aliens' there. Not being able to communicate fluently in Mandarin was not a handicap to us as we imagined. I felt a sense of accomplishment everytime we ventured out to a strange new place all by ourselves and not being able to speak the language made it even more fun and thrilling. Soaking in the atmosphere of the colorful chinese culture was truly enchanting . Being a vegetarian, it was challenging as usual to find meat free dishes, especially in a foreign land where you have no clue what is kind to your stomach and what is not but that did not stop us from being adventurous nevertheless. I loved exploring Shanghai and stumbling upon its various delicious street food. I immensely enjoyed letting the vendors know that I'm a vegetarian and yes I have to emphasise that I dont eat meat, otherwise they would just slide in a few pieces of seafood here and there. I had a ball everytime I said "wo chi su. bu you rou" literally translated to "I eat only vegetables. No meat". I got addicted to this deliciously sinful street food called jian bing big time. It is a little slice of heaven that consists of a very thin batter poured onto a hot round flat griddle (think crepes) and with added elements of egg, green onions, cilantro, some hot sauce and then all wrapped around some crispy fried dough. I got high everytime I ate it. Kinda experiencing cold turkey back home now.

Enough about food. I want to stop drooling. How were the people you may ask? Especially those of you who sensed a slight apprehensiveness in my last post? Well, they were...FANTASTIC. Differences in language, culture, skin colour, food were never an issue to us nor them. There is this one particular chap who has left an everlasting impeccable impression on us. He was one of the waiters we came across in this historical vegetarian restaurant. Why historical? Well, it is the oldest vegetarian restaurant in China. It was founded in 1875 by the Qing Dynasty Emperor Xuantong.

From the moment we stepped into the restaurant, I fell in love with his energy and exuberance. His smile and mannerisms were so endearing. Infact, he was so infectious that everytime he came to our table to chat with us or serve us, we would be burst out into laughters. Strangely enough, we even bumped into him once again while strolling through the night streets. Guess what we all did. Yes, we all burst out into laughters again....middle of the street. The Chinese would have thought we were nuts or something. Or maybe it was just us being high on jianbing. Seriously, its souls like him who make our trip simply enchanting and memorable.

All in all, we love Shanghai and whatever it had to offer us....not to mention the addictive mouth-watering jianbing and that infectious waiter :).

p.s: when we have a child, i think we would name him/her jianbing.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Off To Shangai

I would not be posting regularly for the next 8 days or so. We are flying off to Shangai, China this weekend. Heard from a couple of friends that Shangai is not that friendly towards foreigners. Oh well, as usual, we will check it out for ourselves before jumping into any conclusion. More often that not, what we hear and what we experience are poles apart. We do not wish to be carried away by any preconceived notions just prior to our trip. I'm sure we will have a blast with the Chinese. Will keep you posted once I'm back. Till then, you stay safe. Take care everyone :)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference

--Robert Frost

Friday, March 20, 2009

If we could shrink the earth's population....

If we could shrink the earth's population to a village of precisely 100 people, with all the existing human ratios remaining the same, it would look something like the following. There would be:

57 Asians
21 Europeans
14 from the Western Hemisphere, both north and south
8 would be Africans

52 would be female
48 would be male

70 would be non-white
30 would be white

70 would be non-Christian
30 would be Christian

89 would be heterosexual
11 would be homosexual

6 people would possess 59% of the entire world's wealth
All 6 would be from the United States.

80 would live in substandard housing
70 would be unable to read
50 would suffer from malnutrition
(ONE)1 would be near death;
(ONE)1 would be near birth;
(ONE)1 (yes, only 1) would have a college education;
(ONE)1 (yes, only 1) would own a computer.

When one considers our world from such a compressed perspective, the need for acceptance, understanding and education becomes glaringly apparent.

And, therefore . . .

If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75% of this world.

If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more blessed than the million who will not survive this week.

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish someplace, you are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy.

If you can attend a church meeting without fear of harassment, arrest, torture, or death, you are more blessed than three billion people in the world.

If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation, you are ahead of 500 million people in the world.

If you hold up your head with a smile on your face and are truly thankful, you are blessed because the majority can, but most do not.

If you can read this message, you are more blessed than over two billion people in the world who cannot read at all. As you read this and are reminded how life is in the rest of the world, remember just how blessed you really are!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Let Go and Be Vulnerable

Being vulnerable doesn't have to be threatening. Just have the courage to be sincere, open and honest. This opens the door to deeper communication all around. It creates self-empowerment and the kind of connections with others we all want in life. Speaking from the heart frees us from the secrets that burden us. These secrets are what make us sick or fearful. Speaking truth helps you get clarity on your real heart directives.

-- Sara Paddison

Sunday, March 15, 2009

The Butterfly's Struggle

What do butterflies have in common with the human spirit? Meet Maggie, a middle aged wife and mother, who was about to find out.

Maggie wasn’t rich like a millionaire or poor in a manner of being homeless. She was living an average comfortable life. It was made even better when a beautiful baby girl came her way. She and her husband made sure their daughter had her needs met and they were still able to take a yearly vacation by the beach.

Maggie was a partner in her husband’s business. They both had a different set of duties which kept everything in balance. One day a devastating blow came to her husband’s business, and over a three year period the business dropped out of site. Her husband had to totally reinvent himself and was yearning to fulfill a dream with a new vocation. She was happy for him and supported him fully, but still the money was not coming in.

Maggie began to feel guilty that she wasn’t contributing with any kind of income. It had been a long time since she had worked outside the home and had to work for someone else. Needless to say she was scared but still had faith that everything would be okay. She began job hunting and found filling out applications somewhat difficult, especially the part asking for job references. Keep in mind that she was self-employed with her husband for almost 20 years.

It felt as though that didn’t count for anything as she was never called for an interview.
At the time she was job hunting her mom became more ill than she had been and ended up in the hospital for a week. Once Maggie’s mom returned home she became her mom’s helper one day a week. She did the shopping, changed sheets, vacuumed and did other things that her mother was not able to do anymore. Of course her mom would pay her for her time and labor but she still felt she needed to find another source of income.

One of the first applications she had filled out finally came through. She passed the interview with flying colors and was told she was “exactly” what they were looking for. Although it was only part time it was exactly what she wanted. It was important for her to be home when her daughter arrived home from school. She was told they would be in touch when the schedule was ready. Knowing she had the job made her feel contented and productive again.

Within a few weeks though, she received an e-mail saying that the company had changed the job into a full time position and she was not qualified. Maggie was devastated. She felt betrayed and felt she had been lied to. That evening she was alone as her husband and daughter had gone out for the night. She welcomed the aloneness and wanted to drown her sorrows in a hot tub of bubbles.

As she knew she would, she began to cry, softly at first just from the sheer pain of being rejected. Three long years of struggle had finally caught up with her. Then she became angry; angry at everything from the circumstances that got her there, to God himself. She cried harder and yelled, “What do you want me to do?” She really felt that God had abandoned her.

When she was able to cry no more, she became exhausted and gave up. It was at that moment that a silent idea came to her to offer other elderly people home care assistance.
Using another talent for computers she printed off some flyers and cards and distributed them to her church, grocery stores and even placed a small ad in the newspaper. Within a week she had procured two new clients.

Now, even though she’s not a CEO of a major company or a power player she feels happy and productive again. So, had God really abandoned her? Let’s look at nature for the lessons and the answer.

Before a butterfly can emerge out of it’s chrysalis it has to go through a lot of struggling. Yes, struggling. Each time it lunges out to escape, acids are being removed from its wings. If someone were to come along and break the chrysalis open for it then the butterfly would die from those acids. In essence the struggle is necessary for the butterfly to survive. Then in the stillness, when the struggle is over, the butterfly can come out and share its beauty with the world.
We as humans are not any different. There are times that we need to struggle, to rid ourselves of the acids that make up sadness, fear, and anger. It is only at this time when we are exhausted and still that we begin to hear the Universe whisper to us.

Friday, March 13, 2009

We Are What We Think

Mind is the master power that molds and makes,
And we are Mind, and evermore we take,
The tool of thought, and shaping what we will,
Bring forth a thousand joys, a thousand ills,
We think in secret, and it comes to pass -
Our world is but our looking glass.
-- James Allen

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Liberating Old Age

A Senior's Take On Ageing

Old age, I decided, is a gift. I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my body! I sometime despair over my body - the wrinkles, the baggy eyes and the sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror, but I don't agonize over those things for long.

I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself and less critical of myself. I've become my own friend. I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio. I am entitled to overeat, to be messy, to be extravagant. I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read until 4:00 am and sleep until noon? I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 50s & 60s, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love, I will. I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the bikini set. They, too, will get old.

I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten and I eventually remember the important things. Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when a beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.

I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turn gray and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed and so many have died before their hair could turn silver. I can say "no" and mean it. I can say "yes" and mean it. As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong.

So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream -- and not make dreams your master;
If you can think -- and not make thoughts your aim;

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;

If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings -- nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run --
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And -- which is more -- you'll be a Man, my son!

- Rudyard Kipling

Sunday, March 8, 2009

A message that hit right home

"I once picked up a woman from a garbage dump and she was burning with fever; she was in her last days and her only lament was: ‘My son did this to me.’ I begged her: You must forgive your son. In a moment of madness, when he was not himself, he did a thing he regrets. Be a mother to him, forgive him. It took me a long time to make her say: ‘I forgive my son.’ Just before she died in my arms, she was able to say that with a real forgiveness. She was not concerned that she was dying. The breaking of the heart was that her son did not want her. This is something you and I can understand."

If we really want to love, we must learn how to forgive.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

A Teacher's Tear

The Good Lord was creating teachers. It was His sixth day of 'overtime' and He knew that this was a tremendous responsibility for teachers who would touch the lives of so many impressionable young children. An angel appeared to Him and said, "You are taking a long time to figure this one out." "Yes," said the Lord, " but have you read the specs on this order?"

…must stand above all students, yet be on their level
...must be able to do 180 things not connected with the subject being taught
... must run on coffee and leftovers,
... must communicate vital knowledge to all students daily and be right most of the time
... must have more time for others than for herself/himself
... must have a smile that can endure through pay cuts, problematic children, and worried parents
... must go on teaching when parents question every move and others are not supportive
... must have 6 pair of hands.

"Six pair of hands, " said the angel, "that's impossible." "Well," said the Lord, " it is not the hands that are the problem. It is the three pairs of eyes that are presenting the most difficulty!"

The angel looked incredulous, " Three pairs of eyes...on a standard model?"

The Lord nodded His head, " One pair can see a student for what he is and not what others have labeled him as. Another pair of eyes is in the back of the teacher's head to see what should not be seen, but what must be known. The eyes in the front are only to look at the child as he/she 'acts out' in order to reflect, " I understand and I still believe in you", without so much as saying a word to the child."

"Lord, " said the angel, " this is a very large project and I think you should work on it tomorrow".
"I can't," said the Lord, " for I have come very close to creating something much like Myself.

I have one that comes to work when he/she is sick.....teaches a class of children that do not want to learn....has a special place in his/her heart for children who are not his/her own.....understands the struggles of those who have difficulty....never takes the students for granted..."

The angel looked closely at the model the Lord was creating. "It is too soft-hearted, " said the angel.

"Yes," said the Lord, " but also tough. You can not imagine what this teacher can endure or do, if necessary".

"Can this teacher think?" asked the angel.

"Not only think," said the Lord,. "but reason and compromise."

The angel came closer to have a better look at the model and ran his finger over the teacher's cheek.

"Well, Lord, " said the angel, your job looks fine but there is a leak. I told you that you were putting too much into this model. You can not imagine the stress that will be placed upon the teacher."

The Lord moved in closer and lifted the drop of moisture from the teacher's cheek. It shone and glistened in the light.

"It is not a leak," He said, "It is a tear."

"A tear? What is that?" asked the angel, "What is a tear for?"

The Lord replied with great thought, " It is for the joy and pride of seeing a child accomplish even the smallest task. It is for the loneliness of children who have a hard time to fit in and it is for compassion for the feelings of their parents. It comes from the pain of not being able to reach some children and the disappointment those children feel in themselves. It comes often when a teacher has been with a class for a year and must say good-bye to those students and get ready to welcome a new class."

"My, " said the angel, " The tear thing is a great idea...You are a genius!!"The Lord looked somber, "I didn't put it there."

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Growing Older vs Gowing Up

This is one of the inspirational stories that I love sharing with my students. Hope you enjoy it just as much as we do :).

The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to know someone we didn't already know. I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder. I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up her entire being She said, "Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years old. Can I give you a hug?" I laughed and enthusiastically responded, "Of course you may!" and she gave me a giant squeeze. "Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?" I asked. She jokingly replied, "I'm here to meet a rich husband, get married, have a couple of children, and then retire and travel." "No seriously," I asked.

I was curious what may have motivated her to be taking on this challenge at her age." I always dreamed of having a college education and now I'm getting one!" she told me. After class we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate milkshake. We became instant friends. Every day for the next three months we would leave class together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening to this "time machine" as she shared her wisdom and experience with me. Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she easily made friends wherever she went.

She loved to dress up and she reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living it up. At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet. I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her three by five cards on the floor. Frustrated and a little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said, "I'm sorry I'm so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me!

I'll never get my speech back in order so let me just tell you what I know." As we laughed she cleared her throat and began: "We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy, and achieving success." You have to laugh and find humor every day. "You've got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die. We have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know it!".

"There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up. If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don't do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn eighty-eight. Anybody can grow older. That doesn't take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up by always finding the opportunity to change." "Have no regrets. The elderly usually don't have regrets for what we did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets. She concluded her speech by courageously singing "The Rose." She challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily lives.

At the years end, Rose finished the college degree she had begun all those years ago. One week after graduation, Rose died peacefully in her sleep. Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never too late to be all you can possibly be.


Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

My New Lease Of Life

Definition of Divorce:

1. To dissolve the marriage contract of, either wholly or partially; to separate by divorce.

2. To separate or disunite; to sunder.

3. To make away; to put away.

Ever since my dad's recent relapse, this word 'divorce' has been dominating my heart, soul and mind. I have been trying hard to seek answers. Seeking answers to baffling questions such as: What caused the relapse? Why did he break his promise? Why doesnt he want to see himself and us happy? Why does he deliberately want to absent himself from our lives again? Why did he start abusing my mum? Why doesnt my mum want to divorce him? Why does she keep deceiving us time and again by giving us the false assurance that she will? Why does she, a highly educated, spiritual woman, allow herself to be emotionally trampled by her companion, who is supposed to celebrate, treasure and cherish her for the kindred, compassionate, beautiful soul that she is? Why does she allow the 'love of her life' to strip her off her very inner core?

Light- bulb moment! I finally came to this realisation. As a daughter of an alcoholic, I will never know why my dad allows a bottle to take precedence over his family. As a daughter of an abused mother, I will never understand why she wants to put up with his constant torments. From one woman to another, all I can do is respect her decision. As a daughter, who has been fighting tooth and nail to see her mother in utter peace and bliss, all I can do henceforth is support her choice. It's about time I give up fighting for my mother's happiness. I dont wish to fight my dad, mum and myself anymore. If this is the life my mum has chosen for herself, let it be. I wish her well. Infact, I wish both of them well. On my path to self-discovery, however, I have learnt that I can only become a better soul if I eliminate certain negative factors in my life. Here's the list of factors that I want to divorce myself from:

1. I want to divorce myself from my alcoholic father. I don't wish to trudge on the toxic path to self-destruction because of him, ever again.

2. I want to divorce myself from anguish and despair.

3. I want to divorce myself from hatred.

4. I want to divorce myself from anger.

5. I want to divorce myself from sadness.

6. I want to divorce myself from low self-esteem.

7. I want to divorce myself from bitterness.

8. I want to divorce myself from arrogance and hostility.

9. I want to divorce myself from the fear of being judged.

10. Ultimately, I want to divorce myself from my old self.

I deserve to be happy and I will strive to achieve that ultimate freedom, which finally releases my soul from the clutches of my inner demons. Here's to a NEW, POSITIVE, PEACEFUL AND BLISSFUL SOUL :):):)

Saturday, February 28, 2009

To All You Beautiful Souls Out There

Blessing Of Solitude by John O'Donohue

May you recognize in your life, the presence, power, and light of your soul.

May you realize that you are never alone, that your soul in its brightness and belonging connects you intimately with the rhythm of the universe.

May you have respect for your own individuality and difference.

May you realize that the shape of your soul is unique, that you have a special destiny here, that behind the facade of your life there is something beautiful, good and eternal happening.

May you learn to see yourself with the same delight, pride, and expectations which God sees you in every moment.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Smile Meditation :)

"In ancient China, the Taoists taught that a constant inner smile, a smile to oneself, insured health, happiness and longevity. Why? Smiling to yourself is like basking in love: you become your own best friend. Living with an inner smile is to live in harmony with yourself."

-Mantak Chia

After a 7 month break, I finally got back to my meditation last night. Intrigued by the smile meditation that was introduced in Eat Pray Love, I decided to put this simple soul-gratifying task into practice and see if it works. To my surprise, it did. What does this meditation entail you may ask? Nothing. Just sit, close your eyes and smile. For once, sitting still and focused for 10 minutes was a breeze. Infact, I did not even want to come out of my meditation mode. As I opened my eyes slowly, I could feel my soul smiling back at me and thanking me. Thanking me for giving it food (meditation) to nourish. Immediately after, I started googling for more information on this smile meditation and this is what I found:

The Inner Smile Meditation Technique

A genuine smile transmits loving energy that has the power to warm and heal. By learning to smile inwardly, you can make your whole body feel loved and appreciated. This is a very powerful way to counteract stress and tension. In this meditation you will feel the energy flow down the entire length of your whole body like a waterfall.

This informal technigue is simple and easy to remember. Initially, begin by relaxing yourself. When calm and centered, bring your awareness to the very center, inside your head.Visualize, looking out from the center of your head and see the inside of the 'mask' of your face. Starting with the inside of your forehead, simply notice the broad, screen-like surface where , now blank, clairvoyant visions might play out.

Next, direct your attention downward, witnessing the inside of your eyeballs, eye sockets and the muscles and skin around the eyes. The eyelids are closed. There is nothing to see 'out there'. Simply witness these marvelous 'windows to the other world' with the shades drawn. See the inside of the eyes and feel. Feel your eyes as they are in their neutral, relaxed state. Next, direct your attention downward, witnessing the inside of your nostrils. Take a moment to observe the ebb & flow of life as it passes through this forward-reaching vent. Simply witness the inhale and exhale as it is.

Next, direct your attention downward, witnessing the inside of the mouth and lips. Notice the mouth is relaxed, teeth slightly separated, the tongue lightly pressing the roof of the palate against the back of the upper teeth. See the inside of the lips and feel. Feel your lips as they are in their neutral, relaxed state.Finally, direct your attention downward, witnessing your jaw and chin. See and feel the muscles, skin and bone from the tip of your chin to the hinge of the jaw, as they are in their neutral, relaxed state. Pulling back your focus, witness the whole of the inside of the mask of your face, as it is in its neutral, relaxed state. Again return your attention to your lips, to the corners of your mouth. Notice the feeling of the corners of your mouth as they are in their neutral, relaxed state.

Now, ever so slightly, raise the corners of the mouth until you feel the 'inner smile'. Perhaps imperceptable by an outside observer, you are lifting the corners of your mouth, ever so mindfully, until you feel a distinct shift in energy, a warm sense of well-being. Allow the corners of your mouth to remain in this uplifting position and turn your attention to the inside of your eyes. First, notice them as they are in their neutral, relaxed state. Then, ever so slightly, raise the corners of the eyes until you feel the 'inner smile' feeling here also. The corners of the eyes and mouth should now feel like one unit radiating a distinct, warm sense of well-being. This feeling is The Inner Smile.

As an informal practice, whenever it occurs to you, periodically come back and witness the neutral inner mask of your face throughout the day. Bring your attention back to feeling the inner corners of your mouth and eyes as they are in any given moment. Then choose to reset The Inner Smile.

As a formal practice, the energy of The Inner Smile can be consciously directed downward into the heart, the belly, the liver, the stomach and other digestive organs; to the bones, blood, nervous system ... to the whole of the body ... in directed flows through particular parts of the body or as a global radiating whole.

'Half smiling' mindfulness exercises

Half-smile when you first wake up in the morning. Hang a sign , or even the word "smile" on the ceiling or wall so that you see it right away when you open your eyes. This sign will serve as your reminder. Use these seconds before you get out of bed to take hold of your breath. Inhale and exhale three breaths gently while maintaining the half smile. Follow your breaths.

Half-smile during your free moments. Anywhere you find yourself sitting or standing, half-smile. Look at a child, a leaf, a painting on the wall, anything which is relatively still, and smile. Inhale and exhale quietly three times. Maintain the half smile and consider the spot of your attention as your own true nature.

Half-smile while listening to music. Listen to a piece of music for two or three minutes. Pay attention to the words, music, rhythm, and sentiments. Smile while watching your inhalations and exhalations.

Half-smile when irritated . When you realize you're irritated, half-smile at once. Inhale and exhale quietly, maintaining the half smile for three breaths.

p.s: I'm fine with the entire technique except the last. That is going to be a challenge. Maybe I could try it with my dad :) :) :)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Explain God

Written by Danny Dutton, age 8, Chula Vista, California, for his third grade, homework assignment

One of God's main jobs is making people. He makes them to replace the ones that die so there will be enough people to take care of things here on earth. He doesn't make grown-ups, just babies. I think because they are smaller and easier to make, That way, He doesn't have to take up His valuable time teaching them to talk and walk. He can just leave that to mothers and fathers.

God's second most important job is listening to prayers. An awful lot of this goes on, since some people, like preachers and things, pray at times besides bedtime. God doesn't have time to listen to the radio or TV on account of this. Since He hears everything, not only prayers, there must be a terrible lot of noise in His ears, unless He has thought of a way to turn it off.

God sees everything and hears everything and is everywhere, which keeps Him pretty busy. So you shouldn't go wasting His time by going over your parent's head asking for something they said you couldn't have.

Atheists are people who don't believe in God. I don't think there are any in Chula Vista. At least there aren't any who come to our church.

Jesus is God's Son. He used to do all the hard work like walking on water and performing miracles and trying to teach the people who didn't want to learn about God. They finally got tired of Him preaching to them and they crucified Him. But He was good and kind like His Father and He told His Father that they didn't know what they were doing and to forgive them and God said OK.

His Dad (God) appreciated everything that He had done and all His hard work on earth so He told Him He didn't have to go out on the road anymore. He could stay in heaven. So He did. And now He helps His Dad out by listening to prayers and seeing things which are important for God to take care of and which ones He can take care of Himself without having to bother God. Like the secretary, only more important, of course. You can pray anytime you want and they are sure to hear you because they got it worked out so one of them is on duty all the time.

You should always go to Church on Sunday because it makes God happy, and if there's anybody you want to make happy, it's God. Don't skip church to do something you think will be more fun like going to the beach. This is wrong! And, besides, the sun doesn't come out at the beach until noon anyway.

If you don't believe in God, besides being an atheist, you will be very lonely, because your parent can't go everywhere with You, like to camp, but God can. It is good to know He's around you when you're scared in the dark or when you can't swim very good and you get thrown into real deep water by big kids. But you shouldn't just always think of what God can do for you. I figure God put me here and He can take me back anytime He pleases.

And that's why I believe in God.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Start Romancing Your Soul Today

I was helping mum move recently. She was busy packing all by herself while my dad was busy you know...drinking his and our lives away! As we were packing, we came across a box of beautiful candles I bought her from overseas. Yes I am a candleholic and I thought of rubbing my addiction onto my mum as well. It did seem to work for sometime. I managed to transform her into a candle junkie overnight too. Yay me!!!!!

In midst of our packing, she asked me to take those gorgeous candles back. As much as I was tempted to, I mustered enough willpower to say no. I insisted that she should use them to beautify their new abode.

Mum expressed out of bitterness that she doesnt need this many candles, especially when romance is non-existent in her life. Thats when I came up with this retort, "You need them to romance your soul." We dont need someone else to show us what romance is all about. We can experience it ourselves. We should make a constant, conscientious effort to shower our own souls with heaps of romance and love. Our souls need that desperately. We owe it to them.

To everyone who is reading this... Light up the beautiful candles and start romancing your soul today! Your innerbeing deserves it!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

God's Coffee Anyone?

A group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old university professor. Conversation soon turned into complaints about stress in work and life. Offering his guests coffee, the professor went to the kitchen and returned with a large pot of coffee and an assortment of cups-porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite-telling them to help themselves to the coffee. When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the professor said: "If you noticed, all the nice looking expensive cups were taken up, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones.

While it is normal for you to want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress. Be assured that the cup itself adds no quality to the coffee. In most cases it is just more expensive and in some cases even hides what we drink. What all of you really wanted was coffee, not the cup, but you consciously went for the best cups. And then you began eyeing each other's cups.

Now consider this: Life is the coffee; the jobs, money and position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain Life, and the type of cup we have does not define, nor change the quality of life we live. Sometimes, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee God has provided us." God brews the coffee, not the cups. Enjoy your coffee!

"The happiest people don't have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything."

Live simply.

Love generously.

Care deeply.

Speak kindly.

Leave the rest to God.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Bringing some lightheartedness into my day

Here's a collection of funny quotes and funny thoughts to tickle my funny bone. Boy, dont I need a good, hearty laugh!

Funny Quotes and Funny Thoughts

A bank is a place where they lend you an umbrella in fair weather and ask for it back when it begins to rain.
-- Robert Frost

A woman is like a tea bag - you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water.
-- Eleanor Roosevelt

Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn't.
-- Erica Jong

An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.
-- Gandhi

A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject.
-- Winston Churchill

Always and never are two words you should always remember never to use.
-- Wendell Johnson

Always forgive your enemies - nothing annoys them so much.
-- Oscar Wilde

Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else.
-- Margaret Mead

Beauty isn't worth thinking about; what's important is your mind. You don't want a fifty-dollar haircut on a fifty-cent head.
-- Garrison Keillor

Buy land. They've stopped making it.
-- Mark Twain

By the time you're eighty years old you've learned everything. You only have to remember it.
-- George Burns

By working faithfully eight hours a day, you may get to be a boss and work twelve hours a day.
-- Robert Frost

Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.
-- Mark Twain

Consider the postage stamp, my son. It secures success through its ability to stick to one thing till it gets there.
-- Josh Billings

Everyone told me to pass on Speed because it was a 'bus movie.
-- Sandra Bullock

Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes.
-- Oscar Wilde

Experts say you should never hit your children in anger. When is a good time? When you're feeling festive?
-- Roseanne Barr

For some strange reason, no matter where I go, the place is always called "here".
-- Ashleigh Brilliant

Having a baby changes the way you view your in-laws. I love it when they come to visit now. They can hold the baby and I can go out.
-- Matthew Broderick

He who laughs last probably didn't get the joke.
-- Author Unknown

He who laughs, lasts.
-- Mary Pettibone Poole

I am nobody. Nobody is perfect. Therefore I am perfect.
-- Author Unknown

I don't understand why Cupid was chosen to represent Valentine's Day. When I think about romance, the last thing on my mind is a short, chubby toddler coming at me with a weapon.
-- Author Unknown

I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.
-- Groucho Marx

I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me.
-- Noel Coward

I recently read that love is entirely a matter of chemistry. That must be why my wife treats me like toxic waste.
-- David Bissonnett

I think men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage. They've experienced pain and bought jewelry.
-- Rita Rudner

I told my psychiatrist that everyone hates me. He said I was being ridiculous - everyone hasn't met me yet.
-- Rodney Dangerfield.

I'd much rather be a woman than a man. Women can cry, they can wear cute clothes, and they are the first to be rescued off of sinking ships.
-- Gilda Radner

If love is blind, why is lingerie so popular?
-- Author Unknown

If you can remain calm, you don't have all the facts.
-- Author Unknown

If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance.
-- George Bernard Shaw

If you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman.
-- Margaret Thatcher

If you rest, you rust.
-- Helen Hayes

I'm an excellent housekeeper. Every time I get a divorce, I keep the house.
-- Zsa Zsa Gabor

It's better to live one day as a lion, than a hundred as a sheep.
-- Benito Mussollini

I've been on a calendar, but I've never been on time.
-- Marilyn Munroe

My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which never happened.
-- Montaigne

My theory is that if you look confident you can pull off anything - even if you have no clue what you're doing.
-- Jessica Alba

Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.
-- Erma Bombeck

Never make the same mistake twice or you'll never get around to all of them.
-- Author Unknown

Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most.
-- Mark Twain

One of the keys to happiness is a bad memory.
-- Rita Mae Brown

Reason to smile: Every seven minutes of every day someone in an aerobics class pulls a hamstring.
-- Author Unknown

Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.
-- Oscar Wilde

Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must lead.
-- Charles Bukowski

The ability to quote is a serviceable substitute for wit.
-- Somerset Maugham

The advantage of a bad memory is that one enjoys several times the same good things for the first time.
-- Friedrich Nietzsche

The elevator to success is out of order. You'll have to use the stairs... one step at a time.
-- Joe Girard

The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is that one often comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won't.
-- Henry Ward Beecher

The first law of dietetics seems to be: if it tastes good, it's bad for you.
-- Issac Asimov

The hardest years in life are those between ten and seventy.
-- Helen Hayes (at 73)

The main thing is keeping the main thing the main thing.
-- German Proverb

The nicest thing about quotes is that they give us a nodding acquaintance with the originator which is often socially impressive.
-- Kenneth Williams

The past is a guidepost, not a hitching post.
-- Thomas Holcroft

Those who dance are considered insane by those who cannot hear the music.
-- George Carlin

To be happy with a man you must understand him a lot and love him a little. To be happy with a woman you must love her a lot and not try to understand her at all.
-- Helen Rowland

To solve the human equation, we need to add love, subtract hate, multiply good, and divide between truth and error.
-- Janet Coleman

Until I was 13, I thought my name was 'Shut Up.'
-- Joe Namath

When I was young I was called a rugged individualist. When I was in my fifties I was considered eccentric. Here I am doing and saying the same things I did then and I'm labeled senile.
-- George Burns

We don't stop playing because we grow old; We grow old because we stop playing.
-- George Bernard Shaw

We spend the first twelve months of our children's lives teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve telling them to sit down and shut up.
-- Phyllis Diller

When everyone thinks alike, no one thinks very much.
-- Walter Lippmann

When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth. So, what the hell, leap!
-- Cynthia Heimel

When women are depressed they either eat or go shopping. Men invade another country.
-- Elayne Boosler

Whether women are better than men I cannot say—but I can say they are certainly no worse.
-- Golda Meir

Why get married and make one man miserable when I can stay single and make thousands miserable?
-- Carrie Snow

Wise men talk because they have something to say. Fools talk because they have to say something.
-- Plato

Woman are meant to be loved, not to be understood.
-- Oscar Wilde

Women complain about premenstrual syndrome, but I think of it as the only time of the month that I can be myself.
-- Roseanne Barr

Women dress alike all over the world: they dress to be annoying to other women.
-- Elsa Schiaparelli

Friday, February 20, 2009

An email I just received from my dear friend


1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate anti-depressant.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Buy a lock if you have to.

3. When you wake up in the morning complete the following statement,'My purpose is to __________ today.'

4. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.

5. Drink green tea and plenty of water. Eat blueberries, wild Alaskan salmon, broccoli, almonds and walnuts.

6. Try to make at least three people smile each day.

7. Don't waste your precious energy on energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.

8. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a college kid with a maxed out charge card.

9. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

10. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

11. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

12. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

13. Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.

14. Don't compare your life to others'. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

15. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.

16. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: 'In five years, will this matter?'

17. Forgive everyone for everything.

18. What other people think of you is none of your business.

19. GOD heals everything.

20. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

21. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch!!!

22. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

23. Each night before you go to bed complete the following statements : I am thankful for __________. Today I accomplished _________.

24. Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed.

Time will heal my wounds

Whatever my troubles, however grievous they may appear, time will heal my wounds. But surely there must be something I can do to prevent myself from being hurt in the first place. Why should I allow troubles to drain my energy away and make me unhappy? The answer is, of course, that they do not, it is me who make myself unhappy. I realised that there is a solution to all those problems I'm facing. That is to be found by achieving freedom from my selfish desires and by eradicating all forms of confusion and ignorance.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The bubble has finally burst!

For those who have been following my blog from the beginning, you would know that my relationship with my dad has been strained since my teenage years. He couldn't stand me because I would always stand up for my mum. We hardly spoke though we lived under the same roof. The only words I would hear from him were vulgarities. My mum used to tell me that he was the one who chose my name because he was very much smittened by its pronounciation and meaning. I was amused or shall I say tickled by the fact for as far as I can remember, he rarely addressed me by the beautiful name that he lovingly chose for me. He would only shower me with vulgarities. Disturbing names that have emotionally scarred me, till to this day. I'm not innocent either. I have even raised my hands on my dad on several occasions due to the constant verbal and physical abuses he put my mum through. I am not proud of my actions but that was the only way I could defend my mum from his torments. That's all I knew at the age of 8. In my 32 years, I've only caught my dad sober on a few occasions. But to our pleasant surprise, after a volatile family intervention last June, he changed for the better (so we hoped). He stopped drinking and for once, we got to experience the beauty of having a father figure in our lives and for my mum, a husband and a companionship she has been yearning for the last 40 years. Yes folks. They have been married for 40 years. We were on cloud 9 and we couldnt ask for more. Even his counsellor was very pleased with his changes. However, after 8 months of bliss, the bubble has finally burst. He has reverted back to his binge drinking. He is now back to square 1. Will he ever change? I dont think so. Not anymore. Not after all the chances we have given him so far. If he had truly loved us; if he knew how much emotional damage he had caused all of us all these years; if he appreciates how we were readily willing to forgive and forget the past and give him a chance to reprise his role as a dutiful father and loving husband, would he even have had the slightest inkling to revert back to his vice? All I have learnt from this sombre awakening experience is that my dad is a saddist who gloats over his loved ones miseries. He loves seeing my mum breakdown. He loves playing mind games with her. Simply put, he loves seeing her miserable. He knows for sure that if she is miserable, that would make us, the kids, devastated. He hates seeing us, his own flesh and blood, happy. He doesnt want to help himself or us. Do I hate him? No! I sympathise for him. He needs help. The question is how can we help someone who doesnt want to be helped? It shatters me and my brothers into pieces when we look at our mum these days. She has made so many sacrifices for us and our 'darling' father. Doesnt she deserve peace and bliss in her life? How much longer must we endure this? Why must we go through this vicious poisonous cycle all over again? Why was all our happiness short-lived? The special father-daughter bond that I had shared with him for the last few months has finally turned into a mirage. So much for getting a chance, that too after 32 years, to experience what it is like to have a loving father in your life! For all you beautiful souls out there who have doting fathers, cherish them; treasure them cause I would die for such a golden opportunity.

"Dance With My Father" by Luther Vandross

Back when I was a child, before life removed all the innocence
My father would lift me high and dance with my mother and me and then
Spin me around till I fell asleep
Then up the stairs he would carry me
And I knew for sure I was loved
If I could get another chance, another walk, another dance with him
I’d play a song that would never, ever end
How I’d love, love, love To dance with my father again
When I and my mother would disagree To get my way,
I would run from her to him
He’d make me laugh just to comfort me
Then finally make me do just what my mama said
Later that night when I was asleep
He left a dollar under my sheet
Never dreamed that he would be gone from me
If I could steal one final glance, one final step, one final dance with him
I’d play a song that would never, ever end
Cause I’d love, love, love To dance with my father again
Sometimes I’d listen outside her door
And I’d hear how my mother cried for him
I pray for her even more than me I pray for her even more than me
I know I’m praying for much too much
But could you send back the only man she loved
I know you don’t do it usually But dear Lord she’s dying To dance with my father again
Every night I fall asleep and this is all I ever dream

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Quotes that Provoke Deep Thought from a Soul Level

Teachings of Buddhism

"The ugliness we see in others is a reflection of our own nature."

"We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make our world."

"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion."

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Crossroad of Uncertainties

Crossroad of Uncertainties 1- Being raised in an environment engulfed by the family disease called alcoholism, not even once did I ever think my father would change for the better. But to my pleasant surprise and disbelief, he did and now I'm rejoicing over the existence of a beautiful bond that had left a vacuum in my heart all these years!

Crossroad of Uncertainties 2- Being a slow learner amid two 'Einsteins' in my family, I never once thought I would attain a degree. But to my pleasant surprise I did, that too at the age of 30 and I'm damn proud of myself!

Crossroad of Uncertainties 3- Being the chubby girl with loads of low esteem, I never once thought that I would lose weight and get my esteem back. But to my pleasant surprise I did and now I'm exulting!

Crossroad of Uncertainties 4- Being abused emotionally in a string of past relationships, I never once thought that I would find true love. But to my pleasant surprise I did and I'm now swimming in sheer bliss!

Crossroad of Uncertainties 5- Being born into a conservative and traditional family, I never once thought that my family would easily embrace my inter-racial relationship without any inhibitions and judgments. But to my pleasant surprise, they did with their arms wide open and with so much ease and I'm truly grateful to them!

Crossroad of Uncertainties 6- Being a mother of 0 for the last three years, I never once thought that I, the embodiment of positivity and optimism, will be on the brink of giving up hope to experience the beauty of motherhood. However, today, I fervently started believing that one day(hopefully soon) I will be adding this line to my post, "But to my pleasant surprise and disbelief, we have finally created God's precious gift of love!!!!!!!!!!!!"

p.s: Thank You Karla and Elle for returning my hope, in its full glory, back to me. You have no idea how uplifting your comments were :).

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Do You Hear Me Now?

You are here there everywhere,
You seem to hear me all the time.

You do not fail to fulfill my innermost desires no matter how minute they are,
Even without me asking.

But why are you playing games with me now,
When I need you the most?

Why is my one and only deepest desire still unfulfilled?

A 16 year old delivers a healthy baby boy,
then throws him in the garbage like some old broken toy.

A drug addict has 3 beautiful little ones,
and beats them black and blue for nothing they have done.

A worn-out woman with already more than she can bear,
sighs dissapointedly when she sees two lines are there.

Already a mother of 6, a single divorced woman has 8 more,
Now thats what I call a BABY GALORE!

Where did I go wrong?
What did I do wrong?

All I want is a bundle of joy to cherish and love,
You alone now can give me the blessing from above.

With all the painful waitings,
My patience is slowly growing into despair!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Beautiful Bonding Between A Koala and A Firefighter In Midst of a Deadly Crisis

Firefighter David Tree sharing his water with a Koala that was badly injured in the recent Australian wildfires.

Please do pay attention to how the koala bear holds on to David's hand as she drinks from his bottle. How touching and beautiful! Btw, the rescuers have named the koala Sam. Wishing you a speedy recovery Sam and David may you be blessed for rescuing such a beautiful creature. My heart goes out to all the innocent human and animal lives that perished. May all your souls rest in peace!