BEIJING (AP) — Chinese millionaire Su builds skyscrapers in Beijing and is one of the people powering China's economy on its path to becoming the world's biggest.
He sits at the top of a country — economy booming, influence spreading, military swelling — widely expected to dominate the 21st century.
Yet the property developer shares something surprising with many newly rich in China: he's looking forward to the day he can leave.

Leaving China
My first corn bread

I baked my first corn bread. Not too bad for a first-timer. Of course, those from Cracker Barrel were much better.
Very pleased with myself. Another healthy bread for the family!
Letters from  School

Kai was ecstatic when he came out from school yesterday. He handed me two letters…

He has topped his cohort in Science once again and the icing on the cake…also in his English. *Smile*

Well done, my son. A pat on my shoulder too. I have been watching his English like an old naggy woman. While he is very strong in his content and vocabulary, his grammar has always been a problem. Like most boys, they just dislike rules!

He has studied very hard for his exams last year, although he complained that I was very strict with him, he still did all that I have asked him to do. He even managed to get a 'C' for his Higher Chinese. To me, it was an achievement for someone who didn't even know what 公主 (princess) means? This year, it will be just as disciplined as he reaches the finishing line.

It was a wise decision on his part when he decided (yes, he made the decision himself) on the Shanghai Singapore International School. At least, he is able to know where he stands when he gets home. These awards will definitely come in helpful when he returns to Singapore to start his secondary school life.

Hmmm...perhaps, I will cook his favourite steak this weekend.
"God doesn't help those who don't help themselves"

Someone made this statement recently. The family actually had a discussion over dinner one day.

This statement is so very wrong but it has been repeated so many times, many have just quote it as a truth… THINK. If we can help ourselves, God will never be able to come into the picture.

I really don't blame people who misunderstood this statement. In my teenage years when I was a student leader, I used to use this phrase too until I was opened to a new understanding by a pastor.

If we can help ourselves, we will never go to God, so how then does God come in to help us? The very fact that we stand helpless and surrender all, that's when God is able to be God in all our situations in life.

2 Timothy 1:9
"…not because of our works but because of His own purpose and grace, which He gave us in Christ Jesus before ages began."

Hebrews 11:1
"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen"

Looking at all the miracles of God…did the people or were the people able to help themselves….

Matt 14 : 15 –18 
As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.” Jesus replied, They do not need to go away. (Here, we see even God did not want the people to go and help themselves) You give them something to eat.” “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered.  “Bring them here to me,” He said.  And He directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, He gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over.

Mark 4 : 35 – 41
That day when evening came, He said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.”  Leaving the crowd behind, they took Him along, just as He was, in the boat. There were also other boats with Him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey Him!”

There were many, many more miracles performed by God in the past, even now. But notice, the miracles performed were at those times where difficult situations were faced by the people. In the above examples, the crowd who has nothing to eat, the disciples who were caught in a storm. The healing of the leper, the healing of the blind man…they were all in an unfavourable condition. Remember the Sunday School song we used to sing….

He's able, He's able
I know He's able,
I know my Lord is able to carry me thru.
He heals the broken-hearted
He set the captives free
He makes the lame to walk again
He cause the blind to see….
So, don't sit and laze around and pray that God will rain notes and coins from heaven.

Go to the ant, you sluggard;
consider its ways and be wise!
It has no commander,
no overseer or ruler,
yet it stores its provisions in summer
and gathers its food at harvest.

How long will you lie there, you sluggard?
When will you get up from your sleep?
A little sleep, a little slumber,
a little folding of the hands to rest—
and poverty will come on you like a thief
and scarcity like an armed man.

Proverbs 6: 6 –11

You still need to work, you still need to study but when faced with difficulties, don't try to be god. Let God be God!
A great divide indeed

Yesterday, we went to check out a new supermarket in town. I love to visit new supermarket. This is to check out their products and also to compare prices. With so many fakes, it is always good to check out new products in the city. This supermarket is located in a mega mall. It is very new, some shops are still not opened. This is a city of many new things. So many malls are still new, so many empty shops, so many have also come and gone. The most recent one is a Breadtalk outlet which have vacated spot at a popular mall. There was once a Sake Sushi outlet at a popular hang-out place, it has also left.

I have been to a couple of new malls located in prime areas but they are often half occupied.
This mall is situated in a developed (matured) area

Everyone just want to come here to have a share of the big pie. At the end of the day, whether one gets to have a taste of it, is really anyone's guess.

Back to the new mall. While walking and observing the new mall, we came to a corner where they were having a "decorate a cupcake" session for children. It was a free session (anyway, nothing is for free, there must be some gimmick). All you need to do was to register (ah…personal information given out) and collect a big cupcake (they were bigger than those which I baked). The child would then take the cupcake to a mini table, together with all the other kids, they would decorate the cupcake with everything that  was available on the table. There were Pocky sticks, colourful sprinkles, chocolates, cookies etc…. Yes, basically using food as toys. I have no idea what did they do with their cupcakes after the playtime. I was too disgusted to stay for long. Of course, I did not allow Kai and Ann to participate. I would gladly allow them to eat their own decorated  homemade cupcakes!

As for the new supermarket, sorry, it has been strike off from my list. Reason? Let's put it this way, I would prefer to bring my money to somewhere more deserving *wink*

After the visit to the new mall, we headed for our usual book supplier. We were surprised to see his wife instead of him. She was carrying two babies in her hands. One on each hand and at the same time running the book business. We knew she was pregnant but didn't know that she was having a twin. Was very happy to see her. The twin was a boy and a girl. Asked her where was her husband, she said he had gone to collect more books to sell.

They are people from the poorer province who have come over to the big city to work hard and hopefully to have a better life.

I asked dh, how much could they earn to support themselves and now with the twins? He said and I agree, we really do not know. Will their kids be given the opportunity to be educated and thus, break away from poverty? What really sadden me a lot is when I see those who live a comfortable life bargaining with them over 5 RMB (S$1). Oh, come on, give these people a break. I also cannot imagine if the officials come at that moment…would she be able to save her wares with two babies in tow?

Franklin D Roosevelt the 32nd US President, said it so well…
"The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have enough. It is whether we provide enough for those who have little."

Yes, CHANGE must take place!