Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 20, 2016

Hope Lives

It was our first time to vote yesterday and I must say that Pinky and I were pleasantly surprised with the experience. Here in Australia voting is an obligation – citizens are required to vote or else you will be fined ($118) for not doing so.

We arrived before 10am expecting the worst. However, there was no crowded voting precincts. No overly done election paraphernalia. No last minute vote buying campaigning. No goons. No harassment and everything bad that comes with it.

I felt extremely blessed to have this kind of experience where we literally went in the polling booth and were done in less than five minutes. However, it also made me feel sad and disappointed knowing that in a few months our country (the Philippines) will also be having their elections but their experience will be totally the opposite of ours.

We recognise our blessings but pray that other people may experience it too. Hope lives, Philippines!

IMG_3166-0.JPG

IMG_3167-0.JPG

Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 6, 2016

Great is Thy Faithfulness

I woke up early today and decided to take a quick bike ride before the family wakes up. I’m alone – my bike buds weren’t available this beautiful Sunday morning. So, I brought my phone instead, turned on some meditation music and pedalled away.

I arrived at the Robelle Domain and was looking for a spot to rest. Just as I was doing so, this beautiful song played on my phone. It struck me so much that I decided to listen to it more as my eyes teared-up a bit.

I found a beautiful secluded spot near a brook – all peaceful, quiet and far from any distraction. Only thing I could hear were the lyrics playing over and over again while the birds chirped at the background. I sat on a boulder on the brook and enjoyed the cool breeze. I was drawn by the words as if someone was talking to me. I was trying to hold it in as much as I can but found it extremely difficult to do so.

I guess The Lord speaks with us wherever and whenever he chooses. Mine was this moment – when I was tired, alone and ready to give up.

As I listened and meditated, I realised how much blessed we are. Our family has it’s own share of problems; our own ups and downs; our moment of question and doubt. And yet, despite those times, we were never alone in the deepest sense of it.

I am blessed because my family is reassured of His great faithfulness. He is constant whatever our situation in life maybe. He is compassionate and he will forever be. He gave us strength for today and hope for tomorrow. All that we needed, he has and will always provide.

I decided to sit here a little bit longer as I write this. The music… God’s words to me today… still playing on so I won’t forget. I hope you to remember of his great faithfulness. He speaks to you in the most perfect time – just try to be still and listen.

I share my conversation with him today and hope you find inspiration as I have.

Great is Thy faithfulness,” O God my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

“Great is Thy faithfulness!”
“Great is Thy faithfulness!”
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—
“Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lord, unto me!

IMG_3156.JPG

IMG_3153.JPG

IMG_3155.JPG

Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 2, 2016

Morning Commute

I work pretty far from home and part of my daily grind is my commute to the office. My 90 minute travel one-way used to be a burden. However, I learned to enjoy it by finding better use of my time by either taking a short nap, surfing the internet or praying.

Thankfully, the public transport here is pretty efficient, safe and, unless it’s a peak hour, relatively uncrowded. Definitely blessed to have this available to us.

IMG_3147.JPG Empty train… I was first to board, people soon followed.

IMG_3145.JPGOur newly built station.

Posted by: Leap of Faith | February 28, 2016

Weekend Cycling

Trying to get fit is such a challenge. Thankfully, Pinky bought me a bike so I can do weekend cycling with the gang.

Loving how my wifey is so supportive and how this wonderful city of ours – though its multiple scenic bikeways -also encourages its people to get in shape. Blessed to have them both in my life.

IMG_3144.JPG

IMG_3143.JPG

Posted by: Leap of Faith | February 27, 2016

Of Morning Walks and Being Blessed

Woke up this morning feeling excited about the weekend. It’s been a hectic first “full-week” in the office for me but I’m not complaining specially after our family’s recent bout of illnesses. Both my daughter and I had really severe cough issues since mid January that I needed to take a 2 week break from work to recover. My wife, on the other hand, had a very bad headache and nausea that we needed to call the paramedics to our house twice in one day! Finally, things are slowly getting back to normal in our household and we can only be thankful for that.

I was sorting my phone apps this morning when I got reconnected to WordPress and my blog. So, here I am again, inspired to post what I know will be a beautiful morning/weekend for us.

Morning walks in the estate is happiness.

IMG_3138-0.JPG

IMG_3139.JPG

IMG_3141.JPG

Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 25, 2015

Tradie Moment

One thing that really stresses me about living here in Australia is having to look for tradesmen (“tradies”) to fix things at your home. Because the cost of labour is so expensive, people have to resort to a lot of do-it-yourself (DIY) projects to save on cost. But, since I wasn’t born with the necessary skills (nor the body) to be a great tradie, I end up trying to avoid house repairs if I can.

It’s been almost two years since we moved to our current home and we still don’t have a proper clothesline. We bought one almost a year ago. However, I’ve managed to successfully dodge every reminder that Pinky had given me to install this already. Somehow, the fear of causing damage to our property enabled me to justify why that clothesline has been kept hidden in our garage for the longest time.

Last weekend, though, I woke up really early and, for some weird reason, felt inspired to channel what little tradie qualities I had. The YouTube instructional videos I watched over and over convinced me that installing a clothesline directly to our brick wall was very easy. Inspired with this confidence, I told my wife that this was THE day. I was in the zone.

I borrowed the necessary tools I needed to do the job and got last minute tips from our relative, who had done this before.

Pinky and I measured the wall, marked where I was to drill and then, as easy as that, made my first hole. My initial thoughts were how easy that was and why hadn’t I done this before?! Armed with renewed confidence, I bore the remaining holes I needed.

Interestingly, though, things went quickly down hill after that. I couldn’t put the screws inside the holes, which seemed too small. So, like a DIY expert, I decided to remove the debris and somewhat chiselled the holes to make it bigger. Unfortunately, I got carried away and over did it since, suddenly, the screws were just easily coming in and out of the holes making it impossible for it to hold the weight of the clothesline. Argh!

After much sweat and swearing, I asked our relative for some help. We tried to remediate the damage by putting some liquid nails but that didn’t work. He thought changing the screws might address the problem but was a long-shot. Our best alternative, though, was to drill new holes again, something I was really avoiding for aesthetic reasons.

The next day, I tried to work on my undone project again (silently praying that changing the screws will work this time). I’m sure my wife silently prayed too in what seemed like my desperate hours. As is always the case, God delivered and pulled me through just when I was about to give up. Pinky and I felt so relieved that the new screws were able to finally hold the clothesline in place.

While I feel a sense of achievement having been able to accomplish something I never thought I could do, I feel more comforted knowing that God is always with me and will help me get through specially when things go out of control.

What’s my next project – none for a long time! I just need to make sure I recover fully first from this stressful experience. In the meantime, I’m just happy knowing that my wife can now do her laundry in peace.

IMG_2193.JPG

My wife’s version …
Hanging Out

Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 19, 2015

Silver Lining

This week’s been pretty blah. Work’s been draining the energy of me. Despite this, I choose to remain positive and thank God for my work. These are tough times and just having a job is a blessing.

Looking forward to the silver lining – definitely happier times ahead… in 13 days to be exact.

Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 9, 2015

The Coffee Club

The Coffee Club is fast becoming one of our family’s favourite places to eat and unwind. Previously, we used to avoid this place only because our Asian background dictates that a good meal should always be something paired with either rice or noodles. Salads and sandwiches are a no-no, at least as far as I am concerned.

It’s interesting, though, how our eldest son is now studying about nutrition in his school and one if his assessment is to monitor his food intake for a week. He mentioned to us how surprised he was to find out how much serving of food we ate compared to his Anglo Australian classmates, who would usually just have a few servings of fruit, vegetables and protein every meal time.

While it may take awhile for us to fully change our eating patterns, I believe we’re taking a step towards the right direction by being more open to eating other cuisines. Having said that, we’ve eaten at this Aussie favourite several times now and our family’s unanimously given our thumbs up every time. Whether it be the Big Breakfast, Eggs Benedict, Calamari, Reuben Sandwich or the hearty winter warmers – clearly still not the healthier choices – we always leave the place happy, full and satisfied. Their specialty drinks, coffee and chai latte are also good although this can hurt the budget specially when you are with three growing kids.

This will definitely not be our last meal here because we heart The Coffee Club.

IMG_2154.JPG

IMG_2155-0.JPG

IMG_2160-0.JPG

IMG_2159-0.JPG

IMG_2157.JPG

IMG_2161.JPG

IMG_2158.JPG

Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 4, 2015

Hot Weather and Kitchen Experiments

It’s a few days into autumn but the cooler weather has yet to kick in. Somehow, summer wasn’t as friendly this time compared to the previous years when we felt the heat and humidity at home was not as bad.

A few days back, we saw this advertisement on how to make home-made ice cream using a special blender. Although we didn’t have the same equipment, we thought that our trusted mixing machine could do the same job. So, using a large tub of Greek yogurt, two packs of fresh strawberries and heaps of chocolate, we decided to make our own version of this seemingly easy-to-do and delicious dessert. Unfortunately, our concoction turned out too sour so we decided to pour in sugar to, hopefully, balance out the taste. The kids found it hilarious how our dessert had turned out into anything but what we originally intended it to be – healthy!

We have yet to see if our kitchen experiment worked. Taste test is tonight. Fingers crossed that all goes well.

IMG_2144.JPG

Posted by: Leap of Faith | March 1, 2015

Of A Thousand Paper Cranes and Horror Movies

I noticed that our daughter couldn’t sleep last night so I decided to lay beside her and keep her company until she fell asleep. I think she thought she needed to justify herself to me, so she said that she saw something on the computer earlier that evening that was bothering her. She didn’t go into details. However, I knew exactly what she meant.

We ate out for dinner that evening and one conversation we had was about this girl she read about who was diagnosed with cancer (effects of the atomic bomb in Japan during World War II ). While sick, she decided to make a thousand origami cranes since this was said to allow her to have one wish if she completed it. Her wish was to get well and live longer.

Unfortunately, she only made a few hundred cranes before the illness took her young life. Her friends and family, however, decided to make the remaining cranes so the girl could get her wish. And she did. She now lives forever in the hearts of everyone who hears her story and understands the cruel effects of such man-made atrocities.

Thanks to modern technology, our daughter’s curiosity led her to easily Google the girl’s name up when she reached home. Unfortunately, doing this not only satisfied her desire to know more about this girl and see how she actually looked, but it also unleashed other images which she was not meant to see. Things that even I myself will probably be tormented with if I needed to sleep alone in our room.

The girl’s name is Sadako and, to those of you who have seen a popular Japanese horror movie a decade ago, you know exactly how our child felt when images of the main character in this (other) story popped up on her web search. Sadly, Sadako’s image will now stick to our daughter’s innocent mind and her story too will now live forever in her.

A word of warning to those who have no idea what I am saying – I suggest you keep your curiosity in tow unless you want to succumb to what our daughter just had – a sleepless night. Mwahahaha (slowly, in deep baritone voice)!

IMG_2136.JPG

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

Categories