Monthly Archives: January 2010

The Greatest Love Of All

Do you really love yourself ?


It might seems like a very simple question on which you might think that the obvious answer is a definite YES. But unfortunately not all of us can honestly and confidently said yes.


No one is harder on us than we are on ourselves.


Many times we look in the mirror and we see only our physical flaws.
"If only I am taller" , "If only I have better complexion", "If only I can be 5 kg slimmer", and many other wishes. 


Many times we remember only our mistakes when we look back on the day we've just spent.
We sometimes beat ourselves up even when we've done nothing wrong.


But guess what ?? Despite all those, others like us. Some even love us.
What do they see in us that we don't?


It's good to be honest with ourselves, but we also should be kind.
We can give more love and affection to others if we start with love and affection for ourselves.


So before you go to sleep tonight,  look into the mirror and see how wonderful you truly are, inside and outside.
There are definitely many good reasons why you should love yourself.


 "Learning to love yourself, It is the greatest love of all"



MRO Goal Setting 2010

Chinese New Year is just around the corner. At this time, normally most magazine will write predictions about what is your luck in the Year of Tiger.

Is this year a good year to start a new romance? Will you attract more fortune? Is better health destined for you? and many more …
Well, I'm not the kind of person who normally read all those things. It is not that I don't believe in what they say, but I just don't really take those writings seriously.


I believe the best way to predict our future is to create it,  so instead of spending time reading those predictions that was written, I prefer writing and creating what I want this year to be like. So this year, I bring my whole team, MRO (Merry Riana Organization) for a 3 days 2 nights Goal Setting Session.


We went to Tanjong Putri Golf Resort, Malaysia.  It was a nice and conducive place to conduct such session.




It has many facilities. One of my favorites is they have a huge olympic pool size that we can use for our outdoor activities :)




Healthy minds come from healty body. That is why the first thing we do before we start our GOAL SETTING session is to exercise!





Now that everybody is ready !  Let the programme begin …




Sharing one of my favorite poem




With full concentration, belief and passion, they all start to write their goals and visions for this year




I asked them to focus not only on their career aspects, but to actually plan for many other important aspects in their lives, i.e. Family and Friends, Health, Personal Education, Spiritual Life, Personal Development, etc.




And specially for this GOAL SETTING, I shared with them how important for them to protect their dreams.
There are many people out there who can't do it and can't achieve what they want and they will tell you that you can't do it too.
Don't believe in them. You've gotta to believe in yourself !

During the session, I taught them the steps to protect their dreams




It was indeed a very fun and memorable Goal Setting Experience.




Career vs Family ?

Can women really have both great family and successful career at the same time?

Interestingly just within 1 week, similar question like the above was asked to me many times in many different occasions.

I am very fortunate to be able to enjoy the best of both world, building my business and at the same time building my family too.
so if you asked me whether women can really have both family and career together, my answer would be a definite YES

Yesterday I had lunch with Violet Lim, the founder of Lunch Actually,  Asia’s first lunch dating company. I first knew her 2 years ago from the Spirit Of Enterprise (SOE) Ceremony. Both of us were the Winner for that year (2008).

It was fun talking to her since we had a lot of similarities.
We born in the same year, and same like me, she also run her own business and have kids. So we both have to be multitasked with our role of being a mother, a wife and an entrepreneur. 



I must admit, it is not an easy thing to be able to balance those roles, but it is certainly not impossible. With the right career opportunity and a supportive husband and children, I do believe that woman may be able to manage well with a full-time career and still have a smooth-running household.


Start Where You Stand

20 days in 2010 has passed.
Have you started working on your goals and visions this year?

If the answer is NO, then what is stopping you?

Start today, Start where you stand 
Right here, Right NOW !

 stand raffless resize



Here's a beautiful  poem that I hope can motivate you to get started


Start Where You Stand
By Berton Braley

Start where you stand and never mind the past,
The past won't help you in beginning new,
If you have left it all behind at last
Why, that's enough, you're done with it, you're through;
This is another chapter in the book,
This is another race that you have planned,
Don't give the vanished days a backward look,
Start where you stand.


The world won't care about your old defeats
If you can start anew and win success;
The future is your time, and time is fleet
And there is much of work and strain and stress;
Forget the buried woes and dead despairs,
Here is a brand-new trial right at hand,
The future is for him who does and dares,
Start where you stand



My New Camera =)

I started blogging since June last year, and the more I blog, the more I love doing it.


After blogging for few months, I realized it is definitely important to upload a good quality picture inside each and every posts.

So early this year, I've decided to include that into one of my new year resolutions.


Well, I'm not a professional photographer, and due to my busy schedule, I don't think I'll have the time to actually learn it  (at least not this year), therefore I thought of 2 steps that I need to do in order to be able to shot good pictures.


Step 1: Find a good camera

Step 2: Learn Photoshop :)


When you read this post, I know you probably will recommend me to buy a DSLR camera. Yeah.. I've considered that before, but it might be too 'complex' for a layman person like me who know nuts about photography. So I decided to look for a camera that is not as elaborate as DSLR, but still able to take good picture (at least similar quality with DLSR)

I've actually narrowed down to 3 choices:


1. Canon Powershot G11

2. Canon Powershot S90

3. Panasonic Lumix LX3


It was a tough choices, because all three of them have equally excellent reviews. But after much consideration, I've actually eliminated Lumix LX 3 from my list. Simply because I trusted Canon more :)

So I was then left with 2 choices: Canon Powershot G11  vs  Canon Powershot S90





What I love about G11 was its swivel LCD display. It makes life easier, because I can just take my picture without anyone's help :) but the drawback was its size. It was a bit bulky, therefore might not be convenient for me to carry everywhere with me. 


As of Canon S90, its size was much smaller. 
And what I loved the most was the fact that even though it has the same size as normal compact camera, surprisingly it can take great quality picture, as good as DLSR camera.



So finally I've made my choice.
Last week I went to Funan to buy my new camera … Canon Powershot S90 !


So happy that I took many pictures ever since.

Here's some photos with my new camera :)


My first shot, taken during our supper :)



Lunch at The Mushroom Pot. Loved the picturecolor and it'sbrightness.




Tried to take a close up picture. Result not bad rite? almost look like pro :) hahhaa…









All those pictures were taken using the auto mode. I haven't got any time to really explore all the function, but at least for now, I'm quite happy with the results that was taken, even with the auto mode. What do you think? :)


So now that I'm done with step one, the next step is for me to learn Photoshop ! :)
And once I learned that, means I will achieve one of my goal for this year already
(hahaha…, so fast rite?)


What makes one a Great Leader ?

I posted this status about leadership quality, and one of my FB friend post a comment asking me what do I think will make a great leader ? and who is my favorite leader?



FB status


Initially I thought of replying back and post my anwser back to my Facebook Page, but half way writing I realised that my post become so long, so I decided to give my reply in my blog instead. Also, with that, more people can read.


First Question: What do I think will make a great leader?


I believe there were few characteristic that many great leaders all around the world have in common

Firstly, just like what I wrote earlier in my FB post, A great leader has the attitude of sacrifice. They are willing to made sacrifices to reach their potentials or for the betterment of their people. Or to put it in a simple form, they must not be a self-centered person.

A great leader also a person with a great vision. They know where they are going and they will lead the way on how to get there.
A great leader sees more, sees farther and sees beyond others.

A great leader is someone who can move people with emotion. They make personal connection with their people. They are able to influence.
In fact  the key to successful leadership today is not authority, it is influence.   Remember,it is not the position that makes a leader, but the leader who makes a position.


So who is my favorite leader?


One of the people that I admire is Oprah Winfrey.
She may not hold an official post as a leader, but she definitely has many followers.
She is not a president of a country, or a pastor of a church, but she probably is one of the most influential leaders in the world today.

And that is what I aspire to be.
I hope to become a person of influence.
I hope to become a force for good.
I hope to become a Great Leader.


Merry Little Notes

Merry Little Notes



Your mind is like a parachute, it works better when it's open !

                                                                                                  - Kurek Ashley - 

The Merry Riana Show – featuring Dr. Leslie Tay (

he eats he shoots he posts 

 Definition of ‘food’ in the dictionary tells you that it refers to simply any nourishing substance that is eaten, drunk, or otherwise taken into the body to sustain life, provide energy, promote growth, and so on. However, what does really good food mean? This kind of food not only gives you the nourishments, but at the same time, it triggers the sensation in your tongue and makes you want to go back for more. Now, food is an indispensible part of our lives especially for Singaporean.



However, we would often wonder, where to eat next? It is my pleasure to get to meet with the food ‘guru’ Dr Leslie Tay. He shared with us about his food blog and the tastiest thing that you can find in your vicinity!



He eats, he shoots, he posts, Dr Leslie Tay, is one of Singapore’s famous food blogger. His website,, is currently getting 11,000 hits everyday, and it was also voted as the Best Food Blog out of the 10,000 blogs that were nominated in the recent Asia Pacific Blog Awards. He first started out this food bog with a passion for food, and like he always says, “Never waste your calories on yucky food”. This is definitely true because when we’re eating yucky food, we’re actually putting on calories, making ourselves fat and unhealthy, but at the same time not enjoying ourselves, and that is definitely the most undesirable case that we would want. Therefore, instead of wasting your calories on that food, why not turn to those which are worth much more?



With the new fame garnered onto his food blog which started since 2006 August, Dr Leslie Tay is not only a blogger, but he also runs a full time 2-session clinic as well. During the afternoons when the clinic is not operating, Dr Leslie would go out to catch up with some rest and also meet up with his family or friends. His patients are always finding him very cheerful unlike other doctors, and his secret to it? “Because I had a rest in the afternoon! I had something good to eat, I met up with my friends, I went out with my kids, so I come back in very good mood most of the time” says the father-doctor.



As much as the blog takes up a lot of time, this food lover is simply enjoying this “part-time job” of his and disregards it as a form of work. Now, he’s updating his blog 3 to 4 times a week as a hobby, telling all makan kakis and food lovers where to go next for good food. Apart from that, Dr Leslie has his blog posts surrounding



Singapore life, our character, lifestyle, and also about the hawkers’ lives at times too. “I tend to look at food sometimes in the medical point of view, I try to analyze sometimes how you taste food, the physiology of taste, how we appreciate certain things, and then I also go into a little bit about people’s lives, lives of the hawkers” says Dr Leslie.



Although these contents are good read, Dr Leslie has also added on great photography to his entries. What is a food blog without a decent photo of the food itself isn’t it? He was a photographer even before he started the blog, and it has always been a hobby to him. Furthermore, he had found out that there are too many food blogs around that are not doing the good food justice. With the low quality photos that could turn people off no matter how hard you tried to describe it as heavenly as it may be, “so when I started the food blog, one of the main things is that I wanted the photos to look good. Because I found that at that time, there wasn’t a lot of nice food pictures especially in Singapore



Here are some photos that was taken from his blog.


The quality is simply amazing !










Talking about his success in his food blog, Dr Leslie put it as it is driven by sheer determination and content provision. The large traffic flow and popularity comes mainly with a great content and also a user friendly platform. He may not be earning much from his blog, but he’s definitely enjoying the eating, shooting, and posting. One of the main satisfactions comes from helping the stall or restaurant owners as well. After his post, many would go down to this recommended place which used to be ‘hidden’ at some obscure area of Singapore and now found. This could help the barely surviving food businesses to come to live. One of the favourite places that Dr Leslie would want to recommend to all now, is the Italian restaurant called Cugini at Club Street. This is one particular restaurant that kept him returning time and time again, not missing this year’s Christmas as well. The food was all prepared with sincerity by an Italian chef and you could trust Dr Leslie’s tongue to give you the best recommendation in town.



In celebration of 2009 success by winning the awards and also the anniversary of, Dr Leslie held an AGM – Annual General Makan, invited all who are keen to join them for a makan session. It was aimed to accommodate about 1000 people, and part of the cost will be donated to the charity like they had done for the previous years. This year, they have adopted Prison’s Ministry as their charity recipient, helping ex-convicts to gain a new job and also their families to gain a new life.  They have collected a total of $8150 from the Christmas AGM thanks to the generosity of the ieat community!



So, calling to all food lovers, you can visit the website and follow them on Facebook, or you could contact the food blogger doctor directly at



Last but not least, here is the part of my audio interview with Dr. Leslie Tay. (Click on the picture)


The Merry Riana Show - Leslie Tay



Dr. Leslie Tay in Merry Riana Show

The Irreplaceable Love

I read this story about a month back. It was shared by one of my friend. A beautiful story that has brought tears into my eyes. I thought it is something that is worth sharing. . . . . . . . . . .



4 years ago, an accident took my beloved away and very often I wonder, how does my wife, who is now in the heavenly realm, feel right now? She must be feeling extremely sad for leaving a husband who is incapable to taking care of the house and the kid. ‘cos that is the exact feeling that I have, as I feel that I have failed to provide for the physical and emotional needs of my child, and failed to be the dad and mum for my child.


There was one particular day, when I had an emergency at work. Hence, I had to leave home whilst my child was still sleeping. So thinking that there were still rice leftovers, I hastily cooked an egg and left after informing my sleepy child.


With the double roles, I am often exhausted at work as well as when I am home. So after a long day, I came home, totally drained of all energy. So with just a brief hug and kiss for my child, I went straight into the room, skipping dinner.
However, when I jumped into my bed with intention of just having a well-deserved sleep, all I heard and felt was broken porcelain and warm liquid! I flipped open my blanket, and there lies the source of the ‘problem’… a broken bowl with instant noodles and a mess on the bed
sheet and blanket!


Boy, was I mad! I was so furious that I took a clothes hanger, charged straight at my child who was happily playing with his toy, and give him a good spanking! He merely cried but not asking for mercy, except a short explanation:


“Dad, I was hungry and there wasn’t anymore leftover rice. But you were not back yet, hence I wanted to cook some instant noodles. But I remembered you reminding me not to touch or use the gas stove without any adults around, hence I turned on the shower and used the hot water from the bathroom to cook the noodles. One is for you and the other is for me. However, I was afraid that the noodles will turn cold, so I hid it under the blanket to keep it warm till you return. But I forgot to remind you ‘cos I was playing with my toys…I am sorry Dad…”


At that moment, tears were starting to run down my cheeks…but I didn’t want my son to see his dad crying so I dashed into the bathroom and cried with the shower head on to mask my cries. After that episode, I went towards my son to give him a tight hug and applied medication on him, while coaxing him to sleep. Then, it was time to clear up the mess on the bed. When everything was done and well past midnight, I passed my son’s room, and saw that he was still crying, not from the pain on his little buttock, but from looking at the photograph of his beloved mummy.


A year has passed since the episode; I have tried, in this period, to focus on giving him both the love of his dad and mum, and to attend to most of his needs. And soon, he is turning seven, and will be graduating from kindergarten.
Fortunately, the incident did not leave a lasting impression on his childhood memories and he is still happily growing up.


However, not so long ago, I hit my boy again, with much regret. This time, his kindergarten teacher called, informing me of my son’s absence from school. I took off early from work and went home, expecting him to explain. But he wasn’t to be found, so I went around our house, calling out his name and eventually found him outside a stationery shop, happily playing computer games. I was fuming, brought him home and whack the hell out of him. He did not retaliate, except to say, ‘I am sorry, Dad’. But after much probing, I realized that it was a ‘Talent Show’ organized by his school and the invite is for every student’s mummy. And that was the reason for his absence as he as no mummy…..


Few days after the caning, my son came home to tell me, the kindergarten has recently taught him how to read and write. Since then, he has kept to himself and stayed in his room to practice his writing, which I am sure, would make my wife proud, if she was still around. ‘cos he makes me proud too!


Time passes by very quickly, and soon another year has passed. It’s winter, and its Christmas time. Everywhere the Christmas spirit is in every passer-by…..Christmas carols and frantic shoppers….but alas, my son got into another trouble. When I was about to knock off from the day’s work, the post office called. Due to the peak season, the post master was also on an edgy mood. He called to tell me that my son has attempted to post several letters with no addressee. Although I did make a promise never to hit my son again, I couldn’t help but to hit him as I feel that this child of mine is really beyond control. Once again, as before, he apologized, ‘ I’m sorry, Dad’ and no additional reason to explain. I pushed him towards a corner, went to the post office to collect the letters with no addressee and came home, and angrily questioned my son on his prank, during this time of the year.


His answer, amidst his sobbing, was : The letters were for Mummy.


My eyes grew teary, but I tried to control my emotions and continued to ask him: ” But why did u post so many letters, at one time?” My son’s reply was: ” I have been writing to mummy for a long time, but each time I reach out for the post box, it was too high for me, hence I was not able to post the letters. But recently, when I went back to the postbox, I could reach it and I sent it all at once…”


After hearing this, I was lost. Lost at not knowing what to do, what to say….


I told my son, “Son, mummy is in the heavenly kingdom, so in future, if you have anything to tell her, just burn the letter and it will reach mummy. My son, on hearing this, was much pacified and calm, and soon after, he was sleeping soundly. On promising that I will burn the letters on his behalf, I brought the letters outside, but couldn’t help opening the letter before they turn to ash.


And one of the letters broke my heart….


Dear Mummy,

I miss you so much! Today, there was a ‘Talent Show’ in school, and the school invited all mothers for the show. But you are not around, so I did not want to participate as well. I did not tell Dad about it as I was afraid that Dad would start to cry and miss you all over again. Dad went around looking for me, but in order to hide my sadness, I sat in front of the computer and started playing games at one of the shops.

Dad was furious, and he couldn’t help it but scolded and hit me, but I did not tell him the real reason. Mummy, everyday I see Dad missing you and whenever he think of you, he is so sad and often hide and cry in his room. I think we both miss you very very much. Too much for our own good I think. But Mummy, I am starting to forget your face. Can you please appear in my dreams so that I can see your face and remember you? I
heard that if you fall asleep with the photograph of the person whom you miss, you will see the person in your dreams. But mummy, why haven’t you appeared?


After reading the letter, I can’t stop sobbing. ‘cos I can never replace the irreplaceable gap left behind by my wife….



A Mother's love is irreplaceable and unconditional. Being a mother of 1 yr old daughter myself, I truly understand that.  


The moment  I first hold my baby in my arms I knew that my life will never be the same again.
As a Career Woman, I will have to balance my time so that I can still give her my love, care and attention that she needs.
And at the same time, I must also know how to take care myself, especially my health, so that I can take care of my precious one and see her grow.


I know it is definitely not easy, but some one said before that  Being a mother is one of the highest salaried jobs… since the payment is pure love :)



Me and my daugther, Alvernia