Good Works In Your Vocation

Food For Thought:

While searching for his purpose for me here, i often get frustrated and down when i need to serve clients who might not be adhering to government regulations when operating their business. I start questioning my value of work and Why me?

I spend many days  “complaining ” ( instead of praying ) . This quote from The 2:10 Project speaks it all and it’s timeliness can never be better than NOW. As a HR professional for over 10 years, i have so interviewed and grow with so many of my clients and candidates. My role is to bring the RIGHT people ( in this case God has presented us with a candidate who is motivated to influence the company step by step to make things RIGHT ) .

My paradigm shifted when i start to think of the many years in executive search in China, how i never look to God and try to understand why he has strategically placed me in my vocation, and how God is using me strategically to deliver HIS purpose.

If you are facing challenges understanding your value/ purpose at work, i hope this quote will INSPIRE you on why you are doing what you are doing now.

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Pain Management 101

Checked in to the hospital at 8pm on my week 41 . 14 October 2012, we will try to induce labour. By the time the doctor checked my dilation, I was already 2cm in dilation. She was very happy and said she will put continue to induce labour. She put on a white colored like gel into my birth canal. All was well and I started watching TV. About 2 hours later, I start to feel contractions, it’s sharp continous backache and menstration cramps at regular intervals . I was still able to manage the contractions till 2am. Soon the pain gets more intense, and unbearable, still very regular. Unlike cramps that does go off after you drink hot water or apply a warm bag,  labour pains are sharp and continous , when you do see the peak of the contraction coming, it’s the fear that the pain is coming again and will not go away . I started practising breathing , inhale with the contraction at its peak  and exhale  together with the contraction as it starts to subside ( imagine blowing a candle but to keep the flame on, flickering ) , visualizing the image of the candle in my mind is a good way to keep one’s attention away from the pain.

8 hours has passed since the doctor induce the labour process at 8pm, the contractions are getting even sharper now . From 4am onwards, the pain gets more intense and nearer. Now I need my hubby beside me, to handhold and breathing is not helping much. Whenever a contraction comes, I just have to press hubby’s hand tight to manage the pain. I was watching the clock ticking by and i am very happy whenever the nurse comes in to check on me. I was upset to know I have not even dilated to 3 cm ( when I officially can ask for epidural ). My next nurse visit will be at 6.30am. From 4am – 6 am , the pain was so unbearable that I told hubby I am for epidural but at 6:05 am , I felt a warm gush of water ( i dare not look down and tot it was blood but actually my waterbag has burst ) and started screaming in pain. The pain has become so unbearable that screaming is the only way out for me. I was becoming hysterical due to the pain. Hubby pressed for nurse and I am confirmed to be in active labour. No more time for epidural and I was asked to inhale and exhale, but not to push downwards.

My doctor arrived and soon I was directed by her to push downwards which I fail to get the cue. Glad hubby was there to direct me to focus, breathe and push whenever i feel a contraction.Never felt so much energy being used before. At some point, I was not pushing correctly and the doctor got fierce and told me my energy is wrongly channelled, instead of 3 push, I could only do 2 and will get exhausted. I told myself I need to get the baby out fast , tried and tried. Finally the crown was out, I tried and push at one go, the head, and then the shoulder , my baby was out..finally…after 1.45 hrs considered long as most active labour abt an hour) .I still felt a lot of warm water gushing out..( a lot of amniotic fluid as per my doc. My hubby cut the umbilical cord and the blood splashed over my docs glasses. I was too tired but had a good laugh. My placenta ( which my doctor said was really big too ) slipped out very quickly on it’s own..I didn’t remember delivering it!

Soon heard my baby crying out loud and clear , and i heaved a sigh of relief. I’m experienced labour! Finally I know how it feels really like – after 41 weeks of reading , websites searching and experience sharing by others.

What I learn about labour:

1.Having  a supportive birth partner is very crucial, my hubby played a very important role beside me throughout the entire labour.

2. When you are going into labour for the first time, like I believe, do not go reading books or experiences of others to learn about the pain, what its like. Everyone’s threshold is different. Know your options at different stages of pain.

3.  When a woman goes into normal delivery, she redefines the threshold of pain she can take in life. Yes, I said in life.  Lesson 101 on pain management indeed.

Adrenaline that gets a woman to push during labour – i often wonder where a woman gets all the energy…its really a lot of energy required. I conclude that after all the earlier contraction pain ( i tot my labour was abt 10 hrs but written in my medical report as 6 hrs 45 mins ) one will be even more motivated to push with all your might and do whatever it takes for the last phase of delivery to achieve the one ultimate goal : Get the baby out safely and fast.

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Week 40

Waiting for baby’s arrival on the 40th week. Keeping my faith and waiting for God to bring baby safely into the world.

Pregnancy can be very emotional challenging especially times waiting for baby’s arrival in week 40. Sleeping becomes a challenge  due to frequent toilet visits and one will feel you are carrying a heavy stone at all times. I wonder how man with big belly manage . Basically one cannot lie down flat , even sleeping at sides can be challenging as pressure adds on one side – you tend to get aching on the leg  and shoulder joints .

For someone like me who likes to control and plan, sometimes being unable to control when the baby arrive also makes one feel lost. One becomes sensitive to tell tale signs of labour.As people say, uncertainty is the only certainty in life, how apt when you are waiting for baby to arrive.Doctor has advised that i be admitted to hospital to induce labour. I would still pray and have faith for a natural delivery without any inducing and with God to partner me , the baby and daddy to experience this moment together with faith.

Also, there are times i can’t explain why i feel vexed though it’s largely explained that hormone changes plays a big part in causing emotional roller coaster. For mums to be who experience emotional changes, I’ll suggest listening to soft easy listening music. Worship music helps soothes me a lot. At times, i also try to do small soft shouts to relieve the vexity in me.

Overall, i still find pregnancy  a magical experience to have a living life moving inside my body. I find it a priviledge to be able to experience it. Thanks the Lord for everything.

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EF Short Guide on Eating In Paris

Finding good dining places in Paris can be a challenge , and for preggie mum like me. Sit down brasseries can be found almost everywhere – only they serve the same combi of main course. Yes, 25% salad + 25% french fries / fried potatoes + 50% of main course of your choice ( duck confit, burger, steak, veal steak etc). Soon , i started getting sick eating in brasseries ( given i cannot take raw salad and french fries is not something i want to feed baby with for the next 7 days). Thanks to hubby finding the Les Cocottes Place i saw on TV before our trip, to experience casual dining using staub cooking wares, and also referring to the magazine recommended places. We tried one of the resturant and it turned out very well too.

EF Eating Guide

Les Cocottes de Christian Constant ( Good casual dining place for lunch or dinner ) Address 135 Rue St Dominique ,75007 Paris France

Our recommended :

  • Starters :  Cream of Mushroom Soup with Smoked Duck & Croutons, Poached Egg with Crispy Bacon and Rocket Salad ( Bacon is too salty but it’s similar to our chinese braised pork , interesting combi ), Chicken Pate ( Recommended )
  • Mains : Roast Saddle of Lamb, Roast Fillet of Cod with Fresh Tomatoes , Capers & Olives, Fricassee of chicken with confit lemon

Le Crocs De  L’orge ( for meat lovers, salami and only resturant in Paris we visited so far that serves warm bread and staff speaks good English and excellent service  )                                                                                                                         Address 81 Avenue Bosquet, 75007 Paris France

Our recommended:

  • FOC Starters : Their salami and bread is very good
  • Starters : Grilled Bamboo Clams
  • Mains: Tuna Fish with Baked Potato Mash and Fresh Boiled Vegetables. Edwin had some beef apperitif i recall which include the bone marrow which he says is excellent. ( When ordering the Rib For 2, beware the portion is really big – i think the portion is more for 4-5 instead of 2)

La Parsienne   -for patisseries that are  not too sweet and freshly baked Address : 36 Rue Lepic, 75018 Paris France, ( at Montmatre)

Our recommended:

  • E clairs
  • Fruit Tarts – Raspberry Tarts

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France Here We Come – 30 June 2012

We started the journey on Eurostar and arrived Paris on a rainy and cloudy day. Nevertheless, we were welcomed by the old train station and soon the realities of a city greeted us – smokers everywhere – right outside the station while we waited for our cab.

About 10 years ago , i was here in Paris but i can vaguely remember except it was close to winter and everywhere was foggy- to me it was romantic city. It still is today, while we drove past the many city monuments and to arrive at the doorsteps of our air B&B host.  What was most memorable was the lift to her house- smallest , most slick lift i have ever taken- i must say very good use of space, only 1 person with 1 luggage at one time. Maintenance should be much easier.

Our host greeted me , a thin, petite and well groomed Parisian lady. She has a lovely home , and we will be staying at the attic room ( belonging to her son who is now in Beijing for internship).  The room was lovely, with a good view of the Eiffel Tower. The host has prepared some tea and biscuit for us at her living room, and soon started discussing with us on the places of interest , nearby metros from her home, recommended places to eat in Paris. Very detailed and helpful for first times to Paris. Then did we realise that she is also a traveller, and will be making a spiritual 10 days walking trip.

After tea, we make our way to enjoy the lovely room, and the wonderful view of Eiffel.

Lunch was at this Auvergne brasserie on the street near home since it was a rainy day.  Service was poor, not that i was expecting much better, but the food was disappointing , i must say not our type of food or we didn’t know how to order. Onion Soup and escargo were average, my duck confit was ok but bb’s beef pattie came half raw so we asked for it to be thoroughly cooked and this time it came up charred ( which explains why we didn’t want to take a picture of it). 

All the main course in brasserie came with raw salad and french fries , not somthing as a preggie mum would like.

After lunch, we walked round the neighbourhood to explore the area we live in. The rain has stopped, and we soon found a Laverie – means Laundry In French . They can be easily found in every neighbourhoods ( might be due to many travellers and migrants working). People even bring their curtains, carpets and what have you to wash there ( shuddle with the thoughts that my clothes are going in one of those machines too but no choice). We have lots of clothes to wash and soon was making our way home to get our “dirty” laundry.

For me, it was the first experience using a DIY Laverie, we got help from a lady to explain to us where to buy the soap powder and my dear hubby “apparently” quite good at intepreting French, soon our laundry was in the washing machine, spin dry and fresh clean laundry home!

 

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London Here We Come !

Our long awaited holiday, honeymoon Part 2  – Baby moon ( yes i’m preggie with my our first baby – 5  months into pregnancy is the best period to travel for mums to be coz you have the energy and baby is much stable now )

It took me so long to update our trip on my blog now given we are finally relaxing at home – over 3 months after London.Some tippers about holidaying in London.

Preparation For Preggie Mum Before Travel

  1. Gynae’s letter to certify you are safe to travel : A week before travelling – not 2 -3 weeks earlier as airlines need the letter to be as close to your travel date  (get you for a doctor’s certification you are ok to travel ,duration of pregnancy till date, as well as have single / twin pregnancy )
  2. Pregnancy reports/ check-up status if any till date ( just in case of emergency )
  3. List of hospitals you are entitled to seek medical treatment under your insurance plan , as well as name and contact details of your insurance agent
  4. Ensure you inform your airline while booking or during check -in , share about your pregnancy to see what the airline can offer you – an empty seat beside you or special upgrades

Transport

  1. Arrival > Heathrow Express To The Paddington > Take a London Cab if you are not travelling light
  2. Travelling Around > Easier to travel around by bus than underground ( to avoid walking too much to your destination ) . Seek the buses that stop at where you stay and travel to ( They travel quite a distance and directly to most major tourist attractions and shopping belts )
  3. Bus  Fares and Facts – Flat fee bus fare even for one stop – 2.40 pounds – Buy an Oyster Card or you need to buy the bus ticket at the bus stop before boarding the bus  )
  4. Buses are non airconditioned and similarly for underground too.
  5. Portobello Market ( Alight at Nottinghill Gate Tube, walk towards Pembridge Road and turn left @ Portbello Road )
  6. Day Trip- Stonehenge ( Book in advance and travel by day tour.  Victoria bus station can be confusing as there are so many tour companies and coaches travelling to Bath & Stonehenge – remember to ask to ensure you are on the right tour package . Journey is about 2 hours one way )
  7. Day Trip – Oxford University (Alight at  Marble Arch Underground and take coach Oxford Express – journey is about 45 minutes one way)

Food

Generally London is very cosmopolitan – from Japanese ramen , Vietnamese Pho ( not as good as the ones we have in Shanghai ) , Italian is one of the best – the pasta ( Victoria Station – beside Billy Elliot theatre).

Londoners today are health conscious these days and you see a lot of fast food ( even McDonald serve free range chicken burgers ), irresistable sandwich bars  (food are packed and made on actual day ) and supermarkets targeted at wellness and healthy eating ( Whole Foods being my favorite )  – from free range chicken, eggs, organic fresh vegetables, fresh juices from M&S –  they are  decently priced – 2.99 pounds for a 500 ml mixed juice and fresh cherries @ 2.99 pounds.

Recommended Eats :

  1.  On The Go Breakfast or Lunch > Sandwich – Sushi – Soups – Salads from Pret A Manger / EAT – promotes real , whole, natural, handmade
  2. Afternoon Tea ( Scones , clotted cream & jam are must – Ritz is good but must book in advance and can give Fortnam & Mason a miss. Book in advance. Remember to cancel in advance or they will charge you the full fare for no show! ( http://www.afternoontea.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2&Itemid=3#booking)
  3. Fish & Chip – generally good so no particular restuarant to recommend
  4. Cantonese Food @ London Chinatown – one of the best i have eaten especially Cantonese food with good service – Recommended the wanton soup & fried rice w salted fish & diced chix
  5. English Breakfast -Never had the chance to eat it as it is only available after 9am. Marmite Soldiers ( marmite on toast – too salty and not recommended for even the fanatic marmite fan like me !)
  6. Steak & Ale Pie
  7. Toby Carvery – Yorkshire pud, turkey, beef and pork skin. Hot desserts – Apple & Summer Crumble,Rubarb pudding and ginger lemon sponge are good too.

Portobello Road

UK_Visit

To Be Continued…France Here We Come !

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Factory Visit and Growing Worms

I am on a factory visit to teach students on how to package a product. It was a piece of cloth that was manufactured and then wrapped in light brown paper. I can remember most vividly that the the was pictures of cultural revolution ladies in the size of the 5cm ribbon tied across the wrapped brown paper. It was very colorful and pretty. I woke up.

I was taught by the professor on how to grow worms –  light green in color. I need to be fast, throw all the worms into this bottle filled with water, the light green worms will expand and grow very quickly. Soon, i was busy closing the cover of the jar filled with worms as they expand in size and started are springing out very quickly. Before i know it, some of jumped out. Errggg..i woke up.

I wonder what is the relationship between the 2 dreams – teaching and being taught?

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230812 七夕节

Today is the chinese valentine’s day. We need no flowers or fancy dinner but is happy when dear celebrated this special occasion with me and baby through FOS – the 2nd Nike Festival of Sport in Shanghai.

We saw athletes that represented China in the 2012 Olympics , LB James, leading NBA cheerleaders, world skate boarding champions, concerts by Fan Weiqi and MC Hot Dog.  The songs by MC Hot Dog was fun , Chinese Rap.

Wishing my dear bbe a Happy Chinese Valentines Day. May we stay loving, patient, enjoy every day of each other’s company and be amused by one and another little actions every day. Love you and thank you once again for everything you have done for me, every day of our lives together!

 

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040812

A special day to celebrate 2 lovely occasions – my 5th year dating anniversary with hubby and mum’s birthday. Mum is having fun @ Malaysia at uncle’s place so i ask for his help to buy her a birthday cake. Time flies and she is already 62 today. Thnk you mum for being such a wonderful mum, letting me grow and go to work in Shanghai, cook bird nest when i am back this trip for baby and me, the fish u tp for me and remembering i take roti prata with sugar! God bless you with good health , speedy recovery of your ears, happiness and more winnings during mahjong.

A simple  card, a surprise bouquet of my favourite hydrangeas, champagne roses for our 5th anniversary never fails to bring a smile to my face.  We proceed on to have dinner at GOGA. On the other hand, i did not prepare my card, end up using his card to write a card for him without even realising! This year is going to be a special year as we welcome our baby into our lives.

Thank you hubby for always being there for me in spite of all things, with your patience ( at times when i jump to conclusion, shout when i am upset) , loving me, massaging me at my aching points during pregnancy, taking care of me when i am not feeling well, wearing socks for me before bedtime, worrying for me on my safety ,  I want to let you know it has been the great 5 years with you and look forward towards our journey ahead, with baby! Love you beebs and i thank the Lord for you, and our times together till 87!

 

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Love & Worship

Love

About my love for my family members , my hubby, my soon to arrive baby, my neigbours, and the people i get to know and those i or they make a difference in their/my life during this journey on earth.

Worship

My love for others starts from God’s love for Man. The worship page will be my testimonial, experiences and learnings from all possible sources – weekly service, sharing by others and self intepretation of reading the Bible.

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