Monday, October 31, 2011

i love it!

i want to give a little update about life in indonesia... usually i just talk about my kids, which is probably more exciting, but i also want to document our transition here, the timing of stuff and how we feel.  

in general, life is good here... sometimes i really miss america (mainly when i think about my family and friends... and cheese and the ease of shopping and diet dr pepper and....).  i've realized that something that i want to grow in is having a thankful heart for where God has led us.  honestly, there could potentially be a lot to complain about here (there isn't the order and ease of america), but i want to learn to love this country and the people.  i want to choose to be thankful for the small things until i know the people and culture well enough to really love it.  SO, i'm going to start writing a little 'series' (is that what real bloggers call it?) once a week called "i love it!" and talk about one thing that i love about life in indonesia now... even if it a very small thing... like... 

our backyard

this is a view from the grass, it's our little porch that we spend A LOT of time on.  those sliding doors are always open during the day and go into our main room in the house (we have one big room with a kitchen, dining area and living room).  we love having the shaded area to play outside!

here's a picture from our living room... kitchen on the right side and that little patio table is our dining room table now.  :)  we're getting there.  there's a little strip of grass about the size of a one car garage and these big colorful plants behind it.  it's really pretty out there and will be even more pretty when a gardener comes and cleans it up soon.  :)  we didn't have a yard at all in boston so this is one thing that we are really thankful for about life in indonesia!  

this is not going to turn to complaining now but this is what real life is like here.  there are BUGS...  like the 10 cockroaches we killed in our bathroom/ bedroom today!  they have all of the sudden moved in!  we hadn't seen one in over a month and today we had 10, one of which was on my shirt!  they're the size of my thumb, mind you.  i screamed.  i found something online that says to put salt around the room and down the drain and i'll never see them again.  i'll let you know how that works out.  :)  

oh and one more thing we're really thankful for... our dressers came this weekend!!!  we have been living out of these little black bins since late june so i was thrilled to put all of our clothes in drawers this weekend.  that's another wonderful thing about indonesia... you can give the carpenter a picture of a pottery barn dresser and get it made for about 1/10 of the price.  fun!

and i leave you with this picture from our porch... 

Friday, October 28, 2011


my best friend in 7th grade used to call me cabbage patch kid and i think wrestled her to the ground in response to her remark.  i didn't like it... but i was 12 years old so i guess looking like a chubby baby wasn't a real compliment to me.  (don't worry, i wasn't scared long term by the remark)

think the resemblance has been passed on?

**there's also a picture taken by sarahmica photography on my facebook pictures... probably the most like cabbage patch kid!  and the picture is amazing because she took it!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

we miss you, daddy!

danny went to malaysia for four days and i'm here holding down the fort.  i'm really excited about this opportunity for him to get some time with some of the other men around southeast asia and be envisioned for our life here... but WE MISS HIM!  

mary made him a sign to let him know how much we miss him.  this is when mary is in charge of the sign... 

and this is what happens when luke is in charge of "holding" the sign... that blur is the sign being thrown about.  mary is singing old mcdonald, of course.

i know that many of you have your kids for way longer than four days while your husbands travel... way to go!  i'm new at having both kids by myself in indonesia.  :)  luckily we have a car now (and luckily leslie was over so i wasn't scared to death!), so when the electricity went out last night we loaded the kids up and went to mcdonalds.  sometimes it's out for 20 minutes and sometimes it's out for 2 hours... you never know.  it was back on when we got home, and leslie and i got to eat ice cream and mary and luke played on the slide.  it was a great way to spend the evening!  

Monday, October 24, 2011

he eats dirt.

yummy, dirt!
what mom?  dirt is good!

luke likes to eat dirt.  he is such a boy!  he goes straight for that corner where he can reach the dirt and ants and tries to eat them... and sometimes he gets it in before i can stop him.... and sometimes it's gets all over his cute little mouth.  

mary has a few favorite things right now... puzzles being one of them.  she's getting really good at the puzzles (probably because she has them memorized now) and loves to do them!  it's fun because she gets really proud of herself as she's doing them... when i'm doing them with her she gives me a high five after every piece she puts together.  

she loves to play her guitar also.  we have bought mary very, very few toys in her life (she has grandparents that do that) but this was one i wanted to get her as a surprise for when we arrived in indonesia.  it was one of the better buys that i made this year!  she loves it.  lately, she's been watching this video of herself when she was about 4 months old with her three girls cousins... the girls are singing "girls just want to have fun" and dancing with mary in their arms.  it's about 36 seconds long and mary will watch it approximately 58 times in a row.  well, i think this frequent viewing has helped her dance moves, as you can see below.

on another note, my kids are both turning over new leaves in the sleep department!  praise God!  :)  mary has yelled and whined for about the last 5 months every time she has to go to sleep... i have to go in and talk to her far too many times and we continually repeat... "how do you go night night, mary?" and she replies "with a happy heart, good attitude, no crying, no yelling" and then i close the door and she yells or cries.  rough.  but, the last 5 nights and naps she's gone to bed great!  as she gets in her bed she says, "go night night with happy heart and good attitude more-gin mama!"  letting me know that she's going to do it again (more-gin means more/again).  it's been nice.  and luke, well he had been waking up around 6am and sometimes 5am.  but, the last four mornings he's slept until 7:15 or 7:30am!  then he plays in his bed for a half hour or an hour.  we're thankful and hopeful that these great patterns will continue.

and on the last note, as i'm watching a lizard run across my bedroom floor, i just wish the lizards in my house would stay on the walls!  i've come to accept that we will have lizards in our house... fine.  but, i hate when they're on the floor.  i just wish they would stay above eye level on the walls.  that's all.  :)  

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

kuda, the horsey

we have a car!  it's a mitsubishi kuda (which means horse).  we're super excited!  we're thankful that we got a quality car but we're most excited to be able to go places as a family and FINALLY explore our new city together.  i have dreams of going on picnics, going to the mall together (which would have been a nightmare had i thought of it before... but since we haven't been able to in so long i imagine it as pure bliss... i'll report on reality after it happens) and taking the kids to a playground or something.  :)

and what did we do to celebrate?  we went to pizza hut!  :)  we went with some friends who also bought a car this week (the husband basically found and bargained for our car too) and one of our language teachers and her family.  it was fun to hang out with them outside of school.  ps. i never would have eaten pizza from pizza hut in boston... but here, it's a special treat!  :)  

and here's bubs doing one of his favorite things.... squeezing an empty bottle.  he's very pleased with himself when he can make things happen by myself, like noises from a bottle.  

Monday, October 17, 2011

strapped in

first of all, an update on mary... she is feeling much better tonight and just went to bed without a fever.  we quit potty training after saturday.  she had a very high fever sunday and was in no mood to be trained to do anything!  :)  she was pathetic really.  sad.  we'll try again in a few weeks when the trauma wears off.  i'm convinced that the third time will be a charm!  (yes, we also tried for one day when she was 21 months old... that was terrible!  she had 21 accidents and 3 successes in 5 hours.  haha!)

on a different note... we're ready to get a car!  mary and luke were practicing in their carseats this afternoon (they've been in our foyer since we moved here).  this evening they watched a bit of a video strapped in.  it was mary's idea and luke was less than thrilled about it after about 10 minutes.  

and here is the other reason we want a car... raining season is starting.  it DOWNPOURED on danny when he was coming home from the grocery store.  you can't really tell how wet he is, but he's completely soaked!  thanks for going, danny!

and yes, that is our spikey gate behind danny.  funny, huh?  we hardly even locked our doors in boston and now we have some dangerous gate blocking our driveway.  all of the houses on our street have a gate.... really all of the houses in the city have gates.  it's very welcoming.  :) 

Saturday, October 15, 2011

potty training: day 1

potty training went a little bit like this today.... 

mary, 4 months old, in her cousin mary's chair
it's not entirely true, but right now it feels that way.  she started off really well, had two accidents on the ground but went a lot on the potty.  she was excited about it and loved her M&Ms... which she calls 'cinnamon.'  we were putting cinnamon on our oatmeal this morning and talking about her treats if she goes on the potty.  she got them confused.... and we let her stay confused because i thought it was funny. way to go mary!

i was a little discouraged because i felt like she was getting less excited about it as the day went on (usually i can get her excited about almost anything).  well, at 1:30pm i pick her up to put her to bed for her nap and realize she's kind of hot.  oh, she has a 102 temperature.  no wonder she wasn't herself.  after medicine and sleep she was a bit better, but the medicine wore off and she just went to bed with about a 103 fever.  she got progressively more resistant towards the potty but was also resistant towards everything.  she didn't eat, she wouldn't take medicine, she wouldn't do anything.  she just wanted to lay on me.  sad.  she's never cuddly and she kept saying, "mama, hold you."

we'll see how she's feeling tomorrow and see if this little 'potty training boot camp' will continue.  we'd love prayer for her though.  i'm sure she'll be fine, but it's sad to see your little girl so uncomfortable.  thanks! 

Friday, October 14, 2011


tomorrow is a big day here... we start potty training mary.  kind of dreading it but really think she's ready.  pray for us.  :) 

how mary is going to bed these days: 

we used to read books, pray and all of that stuff.  then, i would stand up and hold her while we sang 'amazing grace' one time and then she goes in her bed and we sing one more time.  well, now she doesn't want us to hold her, so we all three stand alone and sing.  it's kind of odd.  she just started dancing while singing too.  then, she gets in bed, we sing one more time and then walk out.  oh, and the entire routine is interspersed with this conversation... 'how do you go night night, mary?' 'happy heart, good attitude, no crying, no yelling'... over and over again.  and just the last three nights she hasn't cried.  we've had that saying since way before we moved to indonesia though.  it's FINALLY working... maybe?!?

most recent new sayings:

"YES" all of the sudden mary has totally changed her usual 'ya' to a 'yes' pronounced very well.  there are these three indonesian kids who come over often to play and their mom is an english teacher... so maybe the indonesian kids taught her the correct way to say it.  :)  i don't know.  it literally happened in one day and she totally stopped saying 'ya'... it's just so weird.

"i have an itchy"... she has a bite or something that itches, she often wants us to have itchies also.

"biciple" is bicycle.  cute.

"i say in sweet tone, mama" after asking for something nicely...  she gets really proud of herself!  we're really working on the tone and attitude thing.  :)

"ibu sri let me!" when she's asking to do something that she knows she's not allowed to do but our babysitter always lets her... like stand on the counter and pick out snacks, eat oreos, fill up the ice trays by herself, wear her bathing suit all day... ibu sri isn't quite as quick to correct.  it's okay though, we're thankful to have a kind woman who loves our children!  

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

choo choo tar

 i've always known that boys and girls are different but my kids are another great testimony to that.  luke's favorite activities currently are going after the dirt or ants on the edge of our grass (like below)... he's like a magnet to that place!  he loves to throw the ball around the house by himself and chase it.  sometimes he'll do it for 20 minutes straight and he gets really proud every time.  he also loves to throw food off the his tray... and then look at me and wait for me to give him a little pinch.  at the age of 10 months, i'm not exactly sure what mary loved, but she's never eaten dirt or picked up bugs and she didn't start playing with a ball until after she could walk.  and, i gave her about 10 pinches over a few days and she never threw things off her tray again.  they're different.  luke has some spirit.  :)  mary does too, especially now, but it's different.  i can't wait to see how luke's personality develops.

currently, mary loves her "choo choo tar" (guitar... i have no idea how she came up with that name)... her dance moves are developing more and more every day and it's hilarious.  she's now got her hips really going.  she also loves to play puzzles... she's do the same puzzle 12 times if we'd sit there long enough to help her (she likes real puzzles, not wooden ones that she can actually do by herself).  and, she loves to test.  we often talk about how wonderful and funny our kids are, but they are also real.  mary is in the midst of testing her boundaries about EVERYTHING... how long can she wait before she comes when i ask her; if i tell her not to put her feet on the table, can she put her toe, could she put her foot on the underside of the table top, could she... you name it, she tests it.  all in all, she is a pretty easy kid but she definitely is 2 and is learning her place, which is loved by and under God and mama and dada.  :)

Saturday, October 8, 2011

four years of marital bliss...

...that's what we celebrated this weekend.  :)  though in reality not every day is full of bliss, we do feel like the Lord has been so gracious to us through our marriage and we are so thankful for his presence with us.  we are blessed by God.

and, we got to celebrate this weekend!  it started with me making a special dinner of pesto pizza and danny's favorite cookies, pumpkin cake batter white chocolate chip.  keep in mind, most of the ingredients in these cookies can not be bought here, so they are VERY special!  :)  (thanks, mom for the package!)  we put a candle in one for mary and we all sang happy birthday to mama, dada, mary and luke... the term for anniversary here is literally "happy birthday wedding" so i thought it was appropriate... and mary loves candles!

bad picture... i'm not too good at the timer thing yet.  :)  

happy birthday to mama!

happy birthday to ME!
that was probably the 14th time she blew out the candle

friday night danny and i went to a local hotel and had a night away!  it was so fun to just relax and get to spend uninterrupted time together.  we went to a nice dinner... which ended in a funny/typical story.  danny asked for the bill, motioning a piece of paper with his hands and said 'nota' which we are told is used for bill.  the waitor asked something about a glass and danny just kind of looked at him.  then the waitor said 'the large one' and danny said yes.  he walked away and i asked danny why he said yes to the large one... i mean, are we sure he was talking about the bill... is there an option of a small bill?  well, a few minutes later the guy comes back with a huge bottle of beer and a cold glass.  we stopped him right before he started pouring it for danny and realized that 'bill' was heard 'beer.'  anyways, the moral of the story... we still don't know what is going on around here.  ;)  a huge thanks to our friend leslie who kept both of our kids by herself!  she's great with them and i didn't worry at all.

i brought my camera intending to take great pictures of us at the cool places we were going... and i only took this one picture of us sitting on the porch of our room.  lame.

on a different note, it's funny to think about the different things mary is going to grow up doing... like wearing her babies in a "gendongan" like Ibu Sri (our babysitter) wears luke.  cute.  she also asked leslie were the gate was when they were drawing pictures of houses together.  every house here has a gate, and many have crazy spikes.  it's normal for her.

Monday, October 3, 2011


the bubbalu.  

luke is 10 months and getting to be so much fun.  i have always loved my little man, but i'm really loving him these days.  he has so much personality.  he is often seen with this fat kid, cheesey smile on his face... especially when mary is around.  he was laughing at her then.  

sometimes i leave them in their highchairs for awhile after we eat and ask mary to make luke laugh.  she plays games with him and entertains him while i clean the dishes.  it's awesome.

he's also on the go a lot!  he never stops moving.  he's clearly excited about going after something... probably a bug.  it's just weird how much of a boy he is and how different he is than mary.  anytime he is on the back porch he crawls to the grass to eat handfuls of dirt or catch big ants.  he gets really excited about the ants.

he's about to get me... crawling up me as i take the picture.  he's kind of a physical guy, always wrestling, knocking someone over or trying to eat my face.  we'll have to get that one on video but he literally tries to eat my nose.  it's kind of embarrassing in public because he looks like a ferocious dog.

and my newest favorite thing that luke does... play peek a boo in his high chair.  he lays his head down and looks at us and we say "where's luke" and he just gets a big grin on his face.  i mean, i can hardly stand how sweet he looks when he does it.  

on a completely different note, i want to share two reasons why i love indonesians so far.  first, we have had these two little girls come by twice this weekend to play with mary.  they are 8 and 10 years old, they are so patient and kind to her, they bring their toys to show her and they totally entertain her for at least an hour.  it's so sweet!  and i was able to study a little bit while they played.  nice.

secondly, i had an experience at the grocery store that made me really thankful.  i'm like a circus when i go there, really!  i'm on the motorcycle and they give you approximately 4 inches between bikes when you have to park.  then i come out with four big bags of groceries that i have to stuff in a backpack, in my seat and between my legs... then get my bike out of the smallest space known to mankind.  all the while, i'm being stared at the ENTIRE time because i'm the white girl on the motorcycle that clearly didn't have to grocery store on a motorcycle in my past life.  anyways, today i was loading the bags and first, my leg touched another muffler and burnt it (just a bit but i couldn't help it because my legs are wider than the 4 inches that they give me!).  this man looked at me with sympathy, then after watching me try to jam 3 boxs of cereal in my packback he came and helped me while his wife watched (so he wasn't being shadey).  then, he tied my other grocery bag so i could hang it between my legs.  then, when i was trying to get my bike out of the jigsaw puzzle i, of course, bumped into another motorcycle and couldn't manage enough turns to get it out.  the man was there making sure i made it out safely (which i wouldn't had if he weren't there), then he moved the bikes around me and made a way for me to get out.  anyways, all of this to say two things... I AM A GONG SHOW whereever i go.  i mean, i was just laughing at myself as all of the indonesians watched the helpless white girl.  it's times like that that i just wish i could BLEND in... but i never will.  and the other thing, sometimes it's nice to look like an idiot because indonesians are so friendly and they have compassion on me and help me.  i thanked God for him as i drove away.  oh, and the real moral of the story is... pray we get a car soon!