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Showing posts from April, 2014

Parenting - Before & After

Just the other day I was looking at a photo video I had created for our 4th Wedding Anniversary. Our older son Z was with me, and he was thrilled to see his Daddy and Mummy and all the other important people in their lives. He would point to a particular photo and I would take the time to explain to him where it was taken, and what Daddy and Mummy were doing there. We then came to the part in the video which featured Z in the hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, connected by tubes to the UV machine. The little boy looked sad as he pointed to the baby in the photos. "Z...", he said. "Sad, sad." But his eyes brightened again after he saw the happy faces of the numerous people who had come to visit, as well as the photo of the three of us smiling broadly as the video came to an end.  Z at Day 5. Our hearts melted when we saw how much he had to bear at the Neonatal ICU. As we journey into the 7th year of our married life, I can only smile as I think about our t

Easter Week : A Sense of the Resurrection (Part 2)

On the morning of Good Friday, the children woke up bright and early all excited for our outing with our homeschooling group at the Botanics. Our family started a new tradition by having Communion Breakfast with hot cross buns (provided by Nai Nai) and grapes. Communion Breakfast - a new family tradition for the Lim family. Daddy led a time of communion and shared about the last meal that Jesus had with his disciples. He then broke bread, and the family ate the buns and the grapes. And all that despite our  1-year-old E, who found it difficult to understand why he had to wait for everyone to eat the bread and grapes together. The Lim family partaking in communion. After breakfast, Daddy told the Easter story, and shared why Jesus had to die on the cross to take away all the pain of the world. But Jesus rose again from the dead on Easter, and that's why we can live forever with Him. At the Botanics, we met our homeschooling group and promptly started to put togethe

Our Faith is Not in Vain

Quote of the Day: On this day I remember an empty tomb that was guarded fiercely by a whole watch of soldiers. Two people were confronted with the curiosity of the empty tomb. One was John, the disciple whom Jesus loved. The other was Mary Magdalene, a close follower of Jesus. John saw and believed. As for Mary Magdalene, she remained in denial until Jesus appeared and spoke to her personally.  We are faced with the empty tomb today. Which of these two people can you relate to? Our desire as parents is for our two children to choose to see with the eyes of their heart, and believe the undeniable truth that Jesus rose from the dead.  You can read more on the impact of the empty tomb here .

Staying Connected in a Hyper-Connected World

This feature article was first written in July 2013 for Essential Parenting, an online parenting magazine by the Ministry of Social and Family Development. It has been reproduced here following the closure of the magazine. The changing face of society: Dinners are no longer the same... It is a rather common picture nowadays at restaurants all across Singapore. An entire family of four would be seated either waiting for the food or eating. The father would be surfing the Internet or checking email on his   i Phone or Android; the mother talking to friends or searching for the latest fashion information on her smartphone; the teenage daughter listening to music on her   i Pod or communicating with her friends via WhatsApp; and the little toddler watching cartoons or playing games on his   i Pad. One could argue that the family has the best communication technology there is on the market. However, how connected are each of the family members with regards to the day to day happen

What Language Do You Speak?

This feature article was first written in June 2013 for Essential Parenting, an online parenting magazine by the Ministry of Social and Family Development. It has been reproduced here following the closure of the magazine. Holidays: Spending quality time with the family. It was a hard lesson to get through. Tim was complaining about each task that I had set for him to do, and as his teacher, I was getting increasingly frustrated. Tim finally shared that he was upset because his father hardly spent any time with him. “All he does is work, work, work…”, he said resignedly. I asked if he had shared his feelings with his parents. He said he had, but nothing had changed. “How about the time he cooked a special meal for your birthday?” I recalled. “I’m sure your father loves you. It’s just that he has a lot of work to do.” “Yeah… well, maybe,” he replied. “But no matter what, it’s not the same. My brother and I still need that special time alone with him, and I’m pretty sure it’

For God So Loved the World

Quote of the Day: On this day I contemplate one of the most curious acts in all of history. God as a Father sent His only Son to die for the sins of all humankind. Jesus died so that we can be saved. As a father, I cannot fathom why a parent would allow his child to die so that others may live. I cannot imagine anything happening to any of my children. There can only be one reason: that God loves humanity immensely.... What a mind-blowing thought!

Easter Week : A Sense of the Resurrection (Part 1)

I had been planning to do this ever since I found Oh Amanda's activities on her website which help us to take our children through Jesus' death and resurrection as Easter approaches.  However, as we were sick last week I didn't have the strength or energy to start, so we only just began yesterday with celebrating Palm Sunday (late,  I know!) Well, better late than never, I always believe, especially when it comes to homeschooling activities... We began our morning by reading about Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem and how the people recognised His Kingship by laying their cloaks on the ground as well as palm branches, and shouting "Hosanna!" We then started our craft time by tracing our hands on green construction paper and sticking the green hands on the ends of ice cream sticks. (This was great for eye-hand coordination as I had Z put one hand on the paper while using the other to trace it himself.) Here is our little one's contr

Fragrance from the Netherlands: A Review of Tulipmania 2014

A review of the preparations for Tulipmania 2014 at Gardens by the Bay. Written for Little Day Out, a Singapore-based website that provides information and updates on the best of Singapore for families with young children. Z and his Daddy get to pose with the adorable Dutch rabbit Miffy. Not Just a Walk in the Park Imagine a lovely walk along peaceful waters. The evening sun is just about to say its final goodbye; and the fragrant whiff of the tulip flowers linger in the gentle breeze… No, you are not in the Netherlands. But a visit to Tulipmania 2014 in Gardens by the Bay might bring about such a calming illusion. Gardens has brought back Tulipmania, following the resounding success of the exhibition last year. Inspired by Madurodam, a miniature park and tourist attraction in the Netherlands, the centrepiece at the Flower Dome will depict Dutch canal scenes, houses and windmills, all set amidst spectacular blooms of tulips and hyacinths. Z posing for a shot with t

Enduring Love, Noble Aspirations

Quote of the Day: The strength of the marital relationship strongly influences how children turn out. I believe that the enduring, committed love between a man and a woman is what stabilises the marriage and provides children with the confidence and certainty that they need to grow and thrive. This is the love that God modelled for us.

Let Your Eyes Light Up!

Quote of the Day: There are times when our children may tire us out. But we have learnt that parenting is about taking those moments in our stride, and being present with them no matter what. Our children know when we are absent emotionally even though we may be there physically.  So we choose to laugh with them; cry with them; and be with them in every possible situation!

Children are a Heritage

Quote of the Day: A reminder that our children are gifts from God; intended to be a blessing to us. I am heartened to learn that children can be our "weapons", and that they will be there to take care of us during times of need.

Korea 2013: Gyeongju Chapter 4

Bulguksa Temple The boys were rather tired from their long walks the day before, so by the time we got to the first site of the day, it was almost 11 in the morning. Bulguksa Temple was designated as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites and we were excited to see it.  Korea Tourism had a long write-up on the place, and I have reproduced an extract of the page here: Bulguksa Temple is the representative relic of Gyeongju and was designated as a World Cultural Asset by UNESCO in 1995. The beauty of the temple itself and the artistic touch of the stone relics are known throughout the world.  Bulguksa Temple was built in 528 during the Silla Kingdom, in the 15th year of King Beop-Heung's reign (514-540). The temple was originally called ‘Hwaeom Bulguksa Temple’ or ‘Beopryusa Temple’ and was rebuilt by Kim Dae-Seong (700-774), who started building the temple in 751 during the reign of King Gyeong-Deok (in power 742-765) and completed it in 774 during the reign of King H