Posts

Showing posts from December, 2017

Why do we blow candles off on our birthdays?

Image
To start off today’s sermon, the preacher cheekily asked us who hasn’t celebrated our birthday yet this year, and at that moment, my hubby asked me a very interesting question.  Why do we blow candles on birthday cakes?  That question never crossed my mind before. And when the preacher asked the same question, I waited with great expectation for the answer.  So why do you think we blow candles off on our birthdays? Apparently it is because another year of our lives has passed and we have one year shorter to live.  It certainly does not sound like a very happy thing, does it?  And maybe that is why we instinctively don’t celebrate birthdays anymore when we get older.  pearlie

An extremely worried mom

Image
I posted this picture last week and today I’m posting it again.  I’m thinking more and more about how this big turn in my life will be and it’s scaring me but it saddens me even more.  I spent some time today checking out the place and I am feeling a little better but it still worries me.  And my good friend was telling me her mom cried for months when her brother left home and I think I will be just as bad.  Oh dear... pearlie

Are password manager apps safe?

Image
I am on leave at home and with all my devices with me I suddenly realize they all carry different passwords and I keep keying the wrong ones for the different devices and applications.  Our lives are so full of passwords these days that I have no choice but to use a password manager app.  But a very important question is how safe is it? Check out these articles and let me know what you think: - A Skeptic’s Guide to Password Managers and Security -  Is it safe to use a password manager? -  Password Managers: The good, the bad and the ugly I think it is both good and bad but where we are now we really have no other choice.  One of the articles claim that “Despite fears, most experts in the field agree that password managers are still the safest way to secure online accounts.” pearlie

A Thousand Words #218

Image
I tend to laze my off days away... pearlie

What on earth is expensive junk?

Image
Someone said something to me today I am still trying to figure out what it means.  He said something along the line of stop eating expensive junk.  But what is expensive junk?  I don’t eat much junk food and so Dorito’s is out of the picture and therefore what on earth is expensive junk? Are all the expensive food—and food is very expensive these days!—I’ve been eating junk? So pray tell me what is expensive junk so I can stop eating it.  pearlie

2017: My Year In Books

Image
I’ve made reading challenges for the past few years and I’ve read 30 in 2012, 37 in 2013, 56 in 2014, 41 in 2015 and 30 in 2016.  I’ve read the least this year since I’ve started the challenge.  I’m not sure if I really did challenge myself—because I’d put it at 20 books every year, that is, I must at least read 20 a year.  I’ve done well from 2012 to 2016, but not this year.  I literally had to get myself to sit down today to complete the book I’m reading so I can complete the challenge, if I can call it a challenge.  And if you take a look at the books I read this year, because of my interest in the Korean language, I’ve been reading a lot about the country as well, and it is a fascinating country. But that’s another post.  And I better get back to more reading for 2018.  But even though I’ve only done 20, I’m proud to be part of the mere 1% who have completed their challenge.  And for those who haven’t been reading much, I challenge you to start. Create an account in goodreads.com a

A great family day

Image
My nieces (my husband’s nieces actually) came to visit from the UK.  Aren’t they precious and gorgeous? We spent some time with them in church yesterday followed by shopping for clothes (first time my hubby spent so much on clothes for so many girls, i.e. two nieces, a sister and a wife), and then we were all in the cinema watching Star Wars, The Last Jedi , which is not bad I’d say though my hubby would beg to differ.  But a great family day it was.  pearlie

Why was Jesus born?

Image
We celebrated Christmas Eve today at church and it wasn’t the usual Sunday service. After praise and worship, there was a short skit where three men talked about what Christmas is in Starbucks... ...followed by the same three guys playing the three wise men having a discussion about the birth of Jesus in Starbeth Cafe in Bethlehem.  Then pastor gave a very good sermon about Christmas.  I didn’t get the chance to take any notes but I remember a couple of new things I learnt from him: 1. The Jews knowing that the prophecy of the coming of Messiah was about to be fulfilled did not welcome the birth of Jesus but the magi who weren’t Jews were so excited about it they wanted to not only go and visit and give gifts, but to worship him.  2. The virgin Mary was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, not by sexual relations with a man, and with that  Jesus did not inherit the sinful nature of man. And what the Holy Spirit did to “overshadow” Mary—the same way he overshadow the world when it

Mary Did You Know?

Image
We were practicing the song Mary Did You Know for worship service tomorrow and I found this version by Anthem Lights that was very well done.  Mary Did You Know, Anthem Lights pearlie

The problem with learning a new language

Image
I am really finding it so hard in my language learning recently, especially when I feel I am not progressing at all and being fluent seem so distant it’s beginning to feel impossible.  It’s so frustrating.  And I found this  article  that says that I am not only hitting one wall but nine! 1. M y vocabulary is too basic to hold a conversation. And isn’t that so true.  2.  When I learn a new vocabulary word, I still don't understand it when a native uses it. I can only understand bits and pieces here and there.  3.  I can't speak fluently, even though I understand the language when I hear it . Not a wall I’m facing yet since I don’t understand much of what I hear.  4.  I don't know how to stop making the same mistake over and over again. T his is what has been frustrating me lately. I keep mixing up words and grammar rules.  5.  I can understand the language, but I just can't speak it. I can only understand bits and pieces and obviously can’t speak it at all.  6. T he l

A Thousand Words #217

Image
pearlie

When the unexpected happens

Image
There is only one kind of shock worse than the totally unexpected: the expected for which one has refused to prepare.  ~ Mary Renault, The Charioteer There is a feeling of disbelief that comes over you, that takes over, and you kind of go through the motions. You do what you're supposed to do, but in fact you're not there at all.  ~ Frederick Barthelme, Elroy Nights I drew a deep breath, trying to think of something to say, then pulled a handkerchief from my pocket and gave it to him. "Are you breathing, Ian?" His mouth twitched a little. "Aye, I think so." "That's all you have to do, for now.  ~ Diana Gabaldon, An Echo in the Bone (Outlander, #7) God has mercifully ordered that the human brain works slowly; first the blow, hours afterwards the bruise.  ~ Walter de la Mare, The Return pearlie

Office Year-End Lunch

Image
It has been awhile since I have attended a departmental lunch and it’s nice that we had one today.  pearlie

Emergency Bypass on your iPhone

Image
Now that I have used my Mi Band 2 for about a week, I realised one very important thing about emergency calls.  Ever since I started using it, I have switched off all sound and vibration in my phone in order to prolonged battery life, since I’m going to get notifications on my Mi Band anyway.  Except when it’s on a Do Not Disturb mode, which I have set to turn on when I’m asleep.  I then thought—what if I were to receive an emergency call in the middle of the night?  Even without my Mi Band with the DND mode, my phone would have been on silent anyway and I wouldn’t have notice it vibrating when I’m sleeping.  Gone were the days when family members can call the house phone that will ring so loud you can hear it from anywhere in the house at any time of the day or night.  I googled and found out that I can switch on an Emergency Bypass for any selected contacts.  Do this on your iPhone: 1. Open your Contacts app 2. Search for the desired contact 3. Tap Edit on top right of he contact car

Taipei Day 5

Image
It’s finally our last day in Taipei.  We didn’t do much today. I had wanted to drop by Ximending again but my mom refused.  So we practically spent the whole day on the way to the airport... ...where we had our last Taipei bubble tea, though this is the grass jelly one... ...lined up to check in... ...caught up on shows I’ve downloaded into my iPad to watch, and arrived safely in Kuala Lumpur.  I know...a total waste of a day, but it’s still a good slow day to slow down and reminisce to remember the good trip we just had.  pearlie

Taipei Day 4

Image
It’s our fourth day in Taipei and by now, I am feeling quite exhausted with all the walking. My legs were very much in pain and as a result I began to walk really very slowly by now.  As such, I did not have the mindset to take any pictures and what saddest is that I met up with my italki language friend, Yi-Jung, but we never took any pictures! I felt so awful about it when I realised that.  Yi-Jung brought us to Dansui Old Street. It was a 30-minute MRT ride.  Photo from guidetotaipei.com All was good except it was raining quite bad. I felt quite miserable today.  We didn’t stay too long in Dansui and got back to Taipei Main MRT station. Yi-Jung showed us around as we will be taking the MRT to the airport tomorrow.  pearlie

Taipei Day 3

Image
For our third day in Taipei, we started off with a late breakfast at this recommended place for four herb intestine soup. Yum yum.  We then walked to Datong for lunch and on the way there were rows and rows of shops selling dried foods, nuts and tea. And I guess I was too engrossed in observing the sites I didn’t take any pictures! Time passed by too quickly and we were soon in another night market called Shilin.  Shilin night market is all street food... ... and my favourite so far is the popiah ice cream. (And I was obviously too busy enjoying to remember taking any pictures. LOL. I got these photos from  ah-hong.com .) The seller will first scrape the peanut block with lots and lots of energy and rigour.  The grated peanuts will be placed on a popiah skin where two scoops of ice cream will be added with some cilantro.  Cilantro with ice cream? Oh yes! It’s then rolled up and you can ask it to be cut in halves or you can have it whole.  Mmm...the yummiest dessert, ever.  We were so t

Taipei Day 2

Image
Our itinerary today is to Jiufen, Shifen and Miaokou Night Market in Keelung.  And I thought we hired a tour guide for one day but I must have misinterpreted it.  Turned out that I only hired a driver.  It was disappointing but on the bright side of things, my mom wouldn’t have preferred a stranger prodding us to go here and to go there and by the end of the day, we have agreed that we didn’t like the guy anyway, so all is good that he isn’t our guide.  The day started when our driver brought us to this place for breakfast.  My mom’s first reaction was classic—why? Why such a lousy place and not a proper restaurant—my niece and I laughed it off telling her that these are the places where we should be for food in Taipei.  We ordered fish soup and fried meehoon. In the end, my mom liked the meehoon so much, she had second helpings! After breakfast, it was a 30-minute ride to Jiufen. The only problem was this: it was raining. What a bummer.  Jiufen, meaning nine portions, is in a mountain