Monday, June 29, 2015

Gratitude Journal: Fruits N Fathers

This week, I am thankful for...

Fresh summer fruits

Summer is here and nothing beats the feeling of eating a fresh, cold watermelon in the middle of a scorching hot day. I bought some watermelon from my twice-a-month grocery shopping, kept it in the fridge, and planned to eat it for healthy snacks when the heat stings like a bee. 

Last Sunday, after spending all morning outside, it was absolutely delightful to open the fridge and saw the red fruit in all its glory, beckoning my hot, thirsty family to indulge in its healthy, water-filled freshness. Hmmmmmm.... Absolutely delightful!

You might think I'm weird, but Hubby also agree that fresh fruits are God's generous bounty that we should be thankful for. Same with the invention of AC and fridge! "There must be a good reason God gives us watermelon in the peak of summer, instead of in winter, " he reasoned, "Or in our case here in Indonesia, in dry season instead of the rainy season."

He is indeed, generous. Think about it. Not only He gives us food as sustenance, but He cares to make food and fresh produce that are appealing to our eyes, ears and senses, in rich colors, textures, and taste. The food that He gives us are not just bland capsules merely to feed and nourish our body, but also to give us joy, pleasure, family tradition, local cuisine culture, even the art of cooking and food preparation.And we are also thankful for fresh apples, pears, and bananas that we still have plenty in the fridge. Yes, we keep ripe bananas in the fridge. It will keep them fresh much much longer for our daily fruit and veggie smoothies.

Father and son bonding time

On Saturday morning, Hubby took Michael for their father and son bonding ritual. They went to the car wash, the gas station to fill up the tank, then to Lotte Mart - a Walmart like grocery and supermarket chain - to give Michael a chance to ride on one of those car-like grocery cart which he loves. 

Not only it gave me some time to snooze and morning me-time during the weekend, but I'm thankful that the two men in my life have their boys time, special just the two of them.

I am thankful that my son will have nice memory of spending time with his father.

I am thankful that my husband is a good husband and father.

I am thankful that I too, have nice memory of spending time with MY own father when I was little, and it was special.

I am thankful for fathers.

And most importantly, I am thankful for our Father in Heaven. 

God bless you all and have an amazing summer!

I'm linking up to these wonderful Ladies:



Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Week in Recap: Simple, Green N Frugal Family Life

Hello, Friends!
Father's Day
I know it's no longer Father's Day, but let me share with you some pictures of two beloved men of mine who dressed alike for Church for the past two weeks. Aren't they adorable? To me, at least. Haha!
On the first picture collage Hubby and Michael wore T-shirts that Mom got for them from Italy, embroidered with Italy map and cities in colorful threads.
On the second collage, both wore white and blue Indonesian traditional batik fabric shirts with little people prints. It's quite something for Hubby to wear anything but T-shirt and jeans to Church, and he even wore shoes (usually he wore sandals, nice ones, not flip flops!), so I was very happy about it! Hubby dislikes dressing up, but it's very important to me that he at least dress up for Church. Sometimes he complies, sometimes he doesn't. ^__^
Culinary tour around the neigborhood
Hubby and I are pretty much simple, family-oriented, home-loving people. Though we both lived a crazy, glamorous, care-free single lives before, after marriage we basically just love to stay home, eat homemade food, watch DVD, or just have a nice conversation, all within the walls of our own home. Sometimes we will get all glammed up for a "glam" date nights, but rarely. We have fallen into a very predictable yet comfortable routine:
Monday to Friday we stay at home after work for home-cooked dinner and playtime with our son, the bedtime.
Saturday morning is father and son bonding time, so Mommy can snooze a bit, then family time and home-cooked lunch. Sometimes we will go to the nearest mall. Evening is for Church, and sometimes, date night for Mommy and Daddy after Michael goes to bed. Sometimes we order takeouts for Saturday night dinner.
Sunday mornind is going to the park then having brunch. Sunday evening is dinner time at home with homemade cooking.
As you can see, we only eat out pretty much twice a week: Saturday evening and Sunday brunch. Sometimes we would order food more when we don't have time to cook, but not too often.
So we are trying something new this month, just to keep things fresh and not boring. We are playing tourist in our own neighborhood! Instead of heading downtown for datenights, we would try restaurants that we have not tried yet in our neighborhood.
For example, last Saturday after Church, we dropped Michael home then headed out to a steak restaurant just five minutes from our house. We had passed the restaurant hundreds of time, and always mentioned that we should give it a try, but we never did until last Saturday. It was a bit expensive. Well, beef is expensive, and steak is made of a big chunk of beef patty! We don't eat beef often, usually we eat just chicken, so it's a rare treat. A yummy, delicious, unhealthy treat. After steak we still had some space for dessert, so we went next door and bought one portion of sweet "martabak" - a pancake life cake with thick chocolate fillings inside, with lots of butter and condensed milk. Talk about clogging one's artery! We made sure to drink green tea afterward, as well as had meatless dinner the next day to compensate, as well as to assuage our guilt.
In our neighborhood, we have streets practically lined with restaurants, so we decided to try out one new restaurant every Sunday for brunch. We took Michael with us so he could be with Mommy and Daddy as well as trying out new food. Of course, he still had his own lunch after we got home, but at least he experience something new for his palate every week!
Michael is quite a suspicious little fellow. In order for him to try out new food, usually I will have to tell him, "Just taste a little bite. See if you like it, if you don't, you don't have to finish it all." From his expression on the second picture, I guess he liked the fried shrimp meatball that we gave him!
Lessen our household trash
Have you ever wondered where your family trash would finally end up? Most often, in the landfill or the ocean. I am the kind who brings my own bag when I go shopping and try to repurpose everything instead of buying new stuffs. Still, I want to do more for the environment and the future generation. Afterall, we only have one planet (currently) to live, so I don't want a trash-filled planet as my legacy for my children's children. We are the steward of this beautiful planet Earth given to us by God, and we should take a good care of it.
Some time ago, I watched a YouTube clip about Bea Johnson and her zero-waste family. She only buy things with no packaging, cook from scratch, and brings her own jars and cloth bags for grocery shopping. It's quite inspiring. I don't think I would ever reach her zero-waste level, especially since here in Indonesia, it's not possible yet to bring your own mason jar to buy meat at the supermarket. Here, donating and recycling is not as simple as dropping off loads of stuff to the nearest shelter or Goodwill or recyling facilities.
However, one day I stumbled upon the information on the internet that there's a huge recycling facility in a near neighborhood of mine. They are of reputable charity foundation, which is very important because there are many cases where some people would buy used plastic bottles from different brands, fill it up with random products and resell them! They also are willing to do a regular pick up to my neighborhood to collect recycleable trash like plastic, paper, etc.
So I took out a huge bin out of the garage, cleaned it out, and used it to store my dry trash pile, ready for pick up day. I tossed in Michael's formula cardboard boxes, softlens solution packaging, packaging of numerous products, used plastic bottles, etc.
I believe that reduce our consumption is the winner answer for environment problem. Recyling is number two. Still, at least we are doing what we can.
I'm linking up to these wonderful Ladies:


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