Beatrice Tan - Part 2
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4

April

TWENTY

0404 HRS

Klarra’s first feature on i-Weekly

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Klarra's first feature on i-Weekly magazine and the team is thrilled to see this. It was such a humbled and thankful moment.

We always believe fashion isn't just purely about looking good, but most importantly, to feel good, confident within, bringing out the best in each and every of us. We are very adamant on this philosophy will definitely continue to do our very best. Should you have any feedback for us, please do not hesitate to drop me an email at tan.beatrice@gmail.com. Would love to hear from you especially if it's something we should improve!

P.S: Thank you for the lovely write up, Meiwen :)

30

March

TWENTY

0503 HRS

Goodbye, Mr Lee

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An emotional week for all Singaporeans and a proper closure for us all yesterday.

Let's cherish what we have been given and work towards a better future together.

24

March

TWENTY

0103 HRS

Thank you, Mr LKY

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A heavy heart and deeply grieved by the news before I left the hotel room for another day of work at the factory.

Just like other fellow Singaporeans, this attachment to Mr LKY is unexplainable. We know he is irreplaceable and we owe it to him for having such a beautiful nation we call home. A home we are always happy to return no matter where we've travelled to. Without him, we wouldn't be living in a safe city with such stability, peace, cleanliness and many more. Because of what he has built, it gave us opportunities and to have the chance to thrive for them with peace at heart.

Adding in an endearing article from here that has been circulating, which I believe almost all of us have read it – Mr LKY's love life is one of the most inspiring stories to many of us and I would like to paste it here to remember it.


SINGAPORE:
She was his closest friend, his “tower of strength”, for more than three-quarters of his life — the woman who got his attention when she bested him in school, who ran their household and their law firm, and without whom he would have been hard-pressed to enter politics. 

Madam Kwa Geok Choo and Mr Lee Kuan Yew were often seen as inseparable. But the Singapore public found out just how much she meant to him only when he published his memoirs in 1999 — telling all for the first time about the great love of his life and revealing an unexpected side to his unsentimental, hard-nosed public face. 

At Raffles College, she had beaten him to be the top student in English and economics at the end of the first term, giving Mr Lee stiff competition for the coveted Queen’s Scholarship.  When the Japanese Occupation interrupted their studies, they reconnected under different circumstances: Mr Lee and her brother-in-law ran a business making stationery glue. 

With their friendship blossoming by September 1944, Mr Lee knew Mrs Lee well enough to invite her to his 21st birthday dinner, “an event not without significance” in those days. 

With the end of the war, Mr Lee decided to read law in England on his family’s savings. Mrs Lee, who was two-and-a-half years older than Mr Lee, said she would wait for his return. 

In the months before he left in September 1946, the couple spent a lot of time together and took photographs. 

Mr Lee wrote in his memoirs: “We were young and in love, anxious to record this moment of our lives … We both hoped she would go back to Raffles College, win the Queen’s Scholarship to read law and join me wherever I might be.  “She was totally committed. I sensed it. I was equally determined to keep my commitment to her.” 

Indeed, Mrs Lee was awarded the Queen’s Scholarship the next year. However, the Colonial Office could not find her a university place for that academic year and said she would have to wait till 1948. 

Mr Lee, who was studying at Cambridge’s Fitzwilliam College, managed to eventually arrange a meeting with the mistress of Girton College and persuaded her to take in Mrs Lee. 

She arrived in Britain in October. And two months later, during the Christmas vacation, they decided to get married at Stratford-upon-Avon. But they kept their marriage a secret as they felt her parents, her college and the scholarship authorities might not approve.

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SHE WAS HIS ‘INSURANCE POLICY’ 

Back in Singapore in August 1950, the young couple got married on Sep 30 for a second time. They started their careers doing their pupillage at Laycock & Ong and, in 1955 with Mr Lee’s brother Dennis, they set up the law firm Lee & Lee. 

When the People’s Action Party was formed, Mrs Lee helped draft its constitution. In the 1959 general election, she even gave a speech on radio urging women to vote for the party. 

One of Singapore’s best conveyancing lawyers, she also in 1965 helped Law Minister Eddie Barker draft the clauses in the Separation Agreement to guarantee the water agreements with the state of Johor. And for most of Mr Lee’s political career, she was his unofficial speech proofreader — indeed, since his first speech to the Malayan Forum in 1950. 

But for the most part, she devoted herself to the role behind the scenes of being her husband’s staunchest supporter, running both the household, especially after the birth of their first son Hsien Loong in 1952, and the law firm as Mr Lee immersed himself in politics. 

Not only did her income enable him to continue in office over the years, she also put his mind at ease. Mr Lee said once, for “in case anything untoward should happen to me, she would be able to bring up my three children well”. 

While she was often seen by Mr Lee’s side over the years at official functions and on official trips, Mr Lee said he “made a point not to discuss the formulation of policies with her, and she was scrupulous in not reading notes or faxes that were sensitive”.

But he did pay attention to her uncanny gut feel for people’s characters. “She would tell me whether she would trust that man or not. And often she is right,” he said. 

When he penned his memoirs, she would stay up with him until 4am going over the drafts, correcting, critiquing and getting him to write “clear and crisp”.

FACED CRISES TOGETHER 

In terms of their relationship as a couple, they did not dodge difficult personal problems, but faced them and sorted them out early on, Mr Lee said. “We gradually influenced each other’s ways and habits, we adjusted and accommodated each other. We knew that we could not stay starry-eyed lovers all our lives, that life was an ever-ongoing challenge with new problems to resolve and manage.” 

When their younger son Hsien Yang married in 1981, Mr Lee wrote the newly-weds a letter with advice on marriage: “We have never allowed the other to feel abandoned and alone in any moment of crisis. Quite the contrary, we have faced all major crises in our lives together, sharing our fears and hopes, and our subsequent grief and exultation. These moments of crisis have bonded us closer together.”

Mr Lee’s brother, Mr Lee Suan Yew, described the couple as being inseparable — they had to be seated together at family dinners. 

While her husband did not prefer the arts, Mrs Lee loved classical music. “And he, being very much in love with his wife, would comply and follow her to the Esplanade and listen to some concerts,” Mr Lee’s brother said. 

Others, such as former minister George Yeo, who had the opportunity to observe the couple on overseas trips, spoke of their very special close relationship. Education Minister Heng Swee Keat recalled their bantering over Mr Lee’s sweet tooth and how Mrs Lee would “with good humour keep score of the week’s ‘ration’." 

While she sat quietly and unobtrusively, anyone who saw them would know “how much strength her presence gave her husband” at official events.

HER STROKE AND HIS TOUGHEST MOMENTS 

In October 2003, Mrs Lee suffered a stroke while she and Mr Lee were in London. She was flown back to Singapore for an operation. As Mr Lee had already planned to have a prostate operation, they were admitted to Singapore General Hospital in adjacent rooms, with a sliding door between them so they could keep each other company. 

Mrs Lee recovered, but as the stroke left her with a tendency to neglect the left side of her body, Mr Lee would sit on her left at the dining table and prompt her to eat the food on the left side of her plate. He also took care of her medication — a reversal of roles, for it was Mrs Lee who used to ensure he kept his cholesterol level under control. 

They continued to travel together and Mr Lee would always choose hotels with swimming pools so she could get her exercise, which he helped her with. But in 2008, she suffered two strokes which left her unable to get out of bed, move or speak. 

As her condition deteriorated, she responded almost exclusively to Mr Lee’s voice. His most difficult moments came at the end of each day: She would stay awake waiting for him to return from work and he would spend an hour or more by her bedside, talking to her and reading her the news and her favourite poems and books.

His brother recalled how at family dinners, “at 10pm … he’ll say: ‘I’m sorry I have to leave you now’ and go back home and read her favourite storybooks”. Even when abroad, he would speak to her via webcam. 

To fill the “empty blank spaces” now that she was unable to accompany him for meals and walks, Mr Lee kept himself occupied honing his Mandarin.

To cope at night with hearing the sounds of his wife’s discomfort in the next room, he took up meditation.

The constant stress of her illness, he said, was harder on him than the stresses of the political arena.  “I can’t break down. Life has got to go on. I try to busy myself, but from time to time in idle moments, my mind goes back to the happy days when we were up and about together,” Mr Lee said. 

Mr Lee’s pain at his wife’s death in October 2010 was evident in the words of his eulogy: “Without her, I would be a different man, with a different life. She devoted herself to me and our children. She was always there when I needed her. 

“She has lived a life full of warmth and meaning. I should find solace in her 89 years of life well lived. But at this moment of the final parting, my heart is heavy with sorrow and grief.”

Source: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/without-her-i-would-be-a/1736692.html


Heartfelt condolences to Mr Lee's family and rest in peace, Mr LKY. You are a legacy and you will always be remembered.

20

March

TWENTY

0203 HRS

LMF Asia

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With Jolene, one of the organizers of Last Mile Fulfilment Asia (LMF Asia).

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With Alvin from Kose & Errol from Jublia.

A quick update before I rest for the night to recharge for day two of LMF Asia.

Just a summary on what's LMF Asia is about, as quoted from its official site, it basically is an event which aims to foster the building of cross-border fulfilment capabilities. With that in mind, it brings together fulfilment centres, logistics companies, postal agencies and parcel courier companies to meet with eCommerce companies and retailers. This is also a platform to discuss and find solutions to address the last mile challenges in the Asian countries, forge new partnerships and uncover business opportunities. The entire event includes a conference (a need to register in advance, a fee involved) and an exhibition (free admission, open to public, 10am to 5pm) taking place at the same time, with the conferences being the highlight of this event for all players in the industry to listen and learn from industry experts.

Was there the whole of today and sat through almost all of the conferences. Really enjoyed them and took home useful insights, especially in relation to what's going on in the e-commerce industry in Asia currently. Am thankful for this opportunity (thanks a lot, Jolene!) to be able to attend LMF Asia, an inaugural event organized by Singex, and I can't tell you how much I think this will help in Klarra's fulfilment. Will be back to share in details soon again!

If you are an online retailer (especially the f&b, fashion retailers) who is keen to find out fulfilment solutions to your business or to enhance your business, I personally think you can get some pretty useful contacts by visiting the exhibition.
P.S: No worries it's last minute, you can do a quick registration at the spot.

Am dead beat now and time to hit the sack. Looking forward to day two tomorrow!

17

March

TWENTY

1103 HRS

Invisalign Update (Part one)

Fast forward I've been on Invisalign with Orchard Scotts Dental for one half years!

I started with Neuromuscular Therapy for 6 months to correct my bite through a slight shift in the jaw that helped to address issues affecting the nerves and muscles. I used to have a clicking sound whenever I moved my jaw, eg. during meal times, which I thought was a norm which turned out to be otherwise. The clicking sound is due to an incorrect bite which could cause sharp headaches, migraines, insomnia etc and glad that I've this issue solved after Dr Yap (my dentist) pointed out after the X-ray.

Begun my Invisalign treatment shortly after my Neuromuscular Therapy. I knew my bottom row of teeth wasn't the straightest but I personally thought it wouldn't be that great a difference to get them sorted out since I can hide that crooked bottom row quite easily in a way. Then I remembered talking to Dr Yap about it and he showed me some pre/post Invisalign examples which I felt ridiculously impressed with what Invisalign has done – aas minor as the shift is, it seems like it's going to be impactful to the smile.

The shift was very, very gradual. So gradual that I didn't realise what big difference until I dug out these pictures to compare below!
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In case you can't spot the difference still,
1. The two bunny teeth have been flatten (see the shadows at the sides)! I felt that my two front teeth on the upper row were protruding so I requested to push them in.
2. And that bottom row, nuff said. I think the changes are pretty apparent!

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September 2014

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December 2014

Am really glad I did Invisalign and completely no regrets. The aligners have to be worn 22 hours a day and they will only be taken out during meals. Funny how the aligners have become a necessity and I feel amiss if I forget to bring them along with me when I head out – such as rushing out after meals at home and it slips my mind to wear them.

Just so you know, Orchard Scotts Dental is also Invisalign's dedicated clinic in Singapore with the two main dentists, Dr Ronnie Yap and Dr Jerry Lim. Have only been with Dr Yap since the start and he's definitely the best dentist I've had ;)

15

March

TWENTY

1003 HRS

Till we meet again

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Meet Aden, Celia & Desmond :)

Had mentioned earlier that a few overseas guests were in town. They were distanced family friends from Chao Zhou and were here for whole two weeks, putting up at the guest room at home. I had an enjoyable time hanging out with them every night and it felt like a mini gathering with friends.

For one of the days, they spent the whole morning doing marketing, an afternoon preparing the ingredients, and the evening whipping up a homecooked dinner for us all. Oh boy, it was such a sumptuous one and everything was amazing (love that curry fried rice especially). Really lovely to have Sharon and Poots joining in for the meal and we hung out all the way till 2am – not quite usual for a workday heh.

Feeling a little sad after sending them off late last night.. :(

On a random note, it's starting to feel a lil frightening that time is passing by so quickly and 2015 is whizzing by so fast. Can't believe it's going to be April soon and that's a quarter of the year done. Where did all the time go?! Seesh.

14

March

TWENTY

1203 HRS

So it goes on

Work has still been busy but was able to space out my work a little after the peak period and do a little update every now and then.

As mentioned in the previous entries, have been allocating some time a few days each week to update this space as well as Dayre. I actually find it rather therapeutic to be blogging, writing (lengthier post on Dayre as compared to blog) and glad to be back to this 'bedtime activity' heh.

It's pretty easy to type on Dayre too since it's blogging-on-the go. Updated my first post of 2015 on Dayre a few weeks back during Valentine's day (a pretty wordy one which quite a while to write!) and have been updating there rather consistently too. Thought I'll share bits and pieces of that entry here on the blog too and leave the full details of the story to Dayre ;)

Going forward, will still keep this space for more visual updates (especially those travel posts) whereas Dayre shall be a platform for more personal updates instead.

The charming city of London

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The highlight of 2014 was definitely London. The brief 3-month stint was absolutely rewarding & enlightening in so many ways. Wished I had done this much earlier or gone for that overseas placement I've signed up for (but didn't manage to go) back in school days. Never too late they say, and am so glad this trip came true :)

Meet Franco

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I actually made quite a few amazing friends and one of them was Franco, the security guard who worked at the building/apartment where I put up at. He has been really nice, making the effort to stay in touch, sharing bits of London with me through whatsapp pictures, facebook & even sending a gift – a prosecco sweetbread loaf, during Christmas!

Meet Ming

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I must say a huge thank you to Ming, for being such a dear friend. Ming is easily one of the most passionate and capable individuals I've met. Very logical, compassionate and driven. He is actually quite fun-loving too and I personally think he has a natural gift at motivating people – no wonder he's such a respectable boss to many in Nuffnang.

I've to also thank Ming for being so kind and generous to loan me his incredibly cozy apartment in London (just staying in the apartment was such a bliss). That was also how I managed to cross paths with kind-hearted souls like Franco and not forgetting, Francis too (another lovely guard).

Working on Klarra

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And as mentioned in Dayre, I was actually working via Skype with the Klarra team throughout the time when I was away & thankfully for the girls, work was still moving albeit difficult.  Glad to see that Klarra is progressing but running Klarra hasn't be easy at all since the start. Met with a number of major roadblocks along the way & had to work with limited resources, funds which were two of the biggest challenges.

Running Klarra alone was also so much harder than I expected. Quite a daunting journey and at various points in time, I recalled feeling quite burnt out.. So many times I was on the verge of giving everything up & I was very close to end it off two months back.

Had also took a couple of days off to think back then and arrived at a decision that I wanna carry on. Have just updated on Dayre with another lengthy post, and this time I shared a little more on how Klarra started and the issues I had. Still reminding myself how lucky am I to have such supportive family members, friends who are always encouraging. 

I'm more determined to keep things going and am ready to write a new chapter. More updates on both here and Dayre soon! 

Gonna prepare and head out now. In the meanwhile, have a fab weekend ;)

11

March

TWENTY

1103 HRS

Vineyard at Hortpark

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Food tasting with gorgeous peeps last week at Vineyard at Hortpark, courtesy of Creative Eateries.

Vineyard is like a hidden gem, nestled amidst the lush gardens of Hortpark. Although I find it a little inaccessible, I must say parking is pretty easy there and cab drivers definitely know where it is.

I enjoyed the meal and my favourite of the night was the Risotto (a little biased here as I'm a big fan of Risotto, especially when truffled heh). Didn't stay throughout the dinner as I had to rush off but it was a nice simple evening dining over good food and wine, catching up with good friends, familiar faces and making new friends too ;)

Had the impression that Creative Eateries did only catering but was pleasantly surprised to find out that Vineyard is housed under the same company. Even more amazed to know that there are more than 15 restaurants under them; not just any restaurants but established ones (eg. Suki-ya, Siam Kitchen etc) – I'm sure you have seen their names around.

Thanks for hosting us, Creative Eateries. Will be back next time to try out the other dishes!

VINEYARD AT HORTPARK
33 Hyderabad Road
#02-02, Hort Park
Singapore 119578
Tel: 64797977
Mon – Thu: 12:00 – 15:00  & 18:00 – 23:00 
Fri: 12:00 – 15:00 & 18:00 – 01:00 
Sat: 12:00 – 01:00 
Sun: 12:00 – 23:00

9

March

TWENTY

1003 HRS

Like old times

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Had a few overseas guests in town this week and every day was jam-packed with activities. Just wish I had more time to properly bring them around.

I actually find it a great joy exploring Singapore together with them. It seems there's always something new (be it a place, a fact or a piece of history) – makes me feel like I can never know my own country well enough and there will, always, just be something interesting for us all ;D Funny how they loved Punggol Nasi Lemak even though they tried almost every single local dish. Oh boy, I'd that for supper twice in a row and that's seriously n o t  g o o d. Grrrrrr, diet diet diet next.

They have been putting up at my place and I felt exceptionally welcomed each time I got back home.. such lively atmosphere. Makes me wonder how is it like to be working abroad and living with housemates. Never had that experience. Again, wish I did.  

Besides having guests in town, Klarra was also invited to an exhibition over the weekends.

Exhibition took place from last Thursday to Sunday. Pooties came to visit on Saturday evening and very kind of her to join me to bring the guests out for late night drinks. We went to The Wine Company at broadwalk (one of our favourite hang out places) together with mummykins, and chatted unknowingly till 2am! Not a first for us both but that was a first for momsie – she sleeps really early.

Glad to spend some quality time with pooties over dinner before drinks that very same night. Just like old times, dinner with endless conversations, picking up from where we left off. Despite our busy schedules, am happy we always make time for each other <3

Well, that was how quickly the week went by but I must say everyday was pretty well spent! *beams*

Alrighty, need to catch up on my sleep debt. Goodnight peepos ;)

P.S: More musings on Dayre – @beatricesays by the way!

8

March

TWENTY

0703 HRS

The Provision Shop

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Sunday brunch with the gang once more

Arranged last minute in the morning before we all met up three hours later at The Provision Shop, a quaint little cafe tucked away from the hustle and bustle. But mainly, we were there to show our dear friend, Calvin, some support as he has recently started helping out there.

Located at Outram, I realised I was probably the only one who wasn't aware of its existence. Was told this little cafe has been around for a year or two, with loyal customers heading back there for its homemade desserts and food. Didn't try the food as I joined only after lunch. Had two cuppas latte and stole a mouthful of the homemade brownie – very dense, rich and I liked that it wasn't too sweet, they certainly didn't skimp on cocoa! Serving was pretty huge as well and I would recommend sharing amongst four to five people.

Thanks for the great hospitality Cal, will be back there for a proper meal next time :)

THE PROVISION SHOP
Block 3 Everton Park
#01-79, Singapore 080003
Monday to Saturday: 11:30 – 21:00
Sunday: 10:00
- 18.30
Tel: 6225 9931


P.S: Quick update while I'm having a quick break at starbucks before my next appointment. Back soon!