Blackout!

On occasion our electricity goes out.

Thankfully, because it’s only on occasion, it is still kind of fun and feels a bit like camping.  We eat by candlelight, cook by emergency light and play with the shudder speed on our camera.  Good times all around.

 

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I am so grateful our emergency light!  It has come in handy on several occasion!

 

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Here’s me being all ghost-like!  I’m too quick for this shudder speed :) 

(Confession: I just stared at the word “quick” for about 30 seconds trying to decide if it was spelled right.  And still had to ask Nathan how to spell it.  I’m forgetting English in the midst of all of this language learning!)

 

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There’s nothing quite like a candlelit hot dog dinner.  So romantic!

 

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The room was pitch black (minus the candles) when Nathan took this picture.  This was about a 30 second exposure.  Cameras are amazing.

I’ve had the song “Dancing in the Moonlight” ever since the power went out…although maybe “Dancing in the Emergency Light” would be more appropriate for this situation :)

Bananarama

We have a banana tree in our front yard.

This doesn’t, however mean that we have an endless supply of bananas because they take their sweet time growing!  Since we returned to Indonesia in November, our banana tree has been working on on bunch of bananas.  Yesterday, our landlord requested that they be cut down because they were leaning on the roof of the house.  And the banana juices can damage the bricks below. 

So, we had them cut down.

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On banana tree produces about a gozillion bananas in one bunch.  We’ve also learned that Indonesia produces about a gozillion different types of bananas (who knew there were so many??)  I am sorry to say though that I do not know what type of bananas these are.

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Right now, all of these bananas are ripening over at my friends house (we didn’t have a brick-free place to put them here and remember: banana juice= bad for bricks).  Once they’re all yellow, she is going to bring them back and then we are going to eat nothing but bananas for months. 

Not really.

We’ll probably deliver a big bunch to each of our neighbors.

And then I’ll make banana muffins.

Yum!

The Little Things

As you would expect, there are plenty of things that we miss about America while living on the other side of the world.  Mostly family and friends.  But then there are the little things:  Target, Chilis, Chipotle burritos, a good burger (I would give my left pinkie toe for a good burger right now and it’s 6:30 in the morning!), Target, driving a car, Macayo’s, Target, one-stop shopping (Target), Cinnabon (why are most of these food-related?  hum….).

Anyway, yesterday we got a package in the mail from my mom (thanks mom!) and she threw some Peeps into the box.  Oh man…I think Nathan nearly passed out from delerium.

Here’s the break down of events:

Recieve package (excitment ensures, as it always does when we recieve a package)
Open package (rejoice that there is onion powder inside!  Yipee!)
Nathan notices the Peeps.
Nathan nearly passes out.
Becky goes to get her camera.
Becky returns with camera and finds this:

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Hum….

 

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In a desperate attempt for the moment to last, Nathan tries to get even last granule of Peep sugar out of the box…

 

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Every last bit of Peep-y goodness.

Thanks mom for the Peeps-it made Nathan’s week!

Slug It Out

I found this guy crawling around my house when I woke up this morning.

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Hard to tell from the picture, but he’s about three inches long and has the cutest little antennas (can slugs be cute? )  When he got scared, his antennas retracted into his body.  Poor little guy.

Anyway, since he didn’t gross me out too much, I let him crawl around until Nathan woke up.  Then he was shown the door…by Nathan, not me.  I mean, he has cute antennas and all, but I don’t want to touch him!

Ants-The Takeover

Ants are taking over my house.

Yesterday, I wanted to make cookies because I found some chocolate chips for sale at the pasar for only 33,000 Rp/kilo! (about $3.50/2.2 lbs). I’ve been hanging on to a recipe for sometime now that I’ve wanted to try:

Outrageous Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • Directions

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
    2. In a medium bowl, cream together the butter, white sugar and brown sugar until smooth. Stir in the peanut butter, vanilla and egg until well blended. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; stir into the batter just until moistened. Mix in the oats and chocolate chips until evenly distributed. Drop by tablespoonfuls on to lightly greased cookie sheets.
    3. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in the preheated oven, until the edges start to brown. Cool on cookie sheets for about 5 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

    Try it.  They are delicious (actually, that is to say that the cookie dough is delicious, I haven’t actually tried a baked cookie yet because that’s how we roll in my house).

    Anyway…ants.

    So, I went to measure out the white sugar for this recipe and this is what I found:

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    Since I didn’t want all of this sugar to go to waste, I put it in the freezer until the ants died and then I scooped them all out and continued on my merry way.

    Sigh…at least they were little ants this time!

    Learning to Drive

    We are considering buying a motorcycle for me so that I can get around by myself, but before we spent money on a bike, I wanted to make sure that I could actually drive one.  I’ve never driven a motorcycle before so I was nervous!  A friend of ours has an automatic bike similar to the one we are looking at buying and she let us borrow it (she’s brave huh?  to let someone who’s never driven a bike borrow hers!)  We went to a soccer field nearby to practice since I am not road-ready yet.

    So, here it is folks, my first time driving a motorcycle for your viewing pleasure.  Please don’t laugh.  Ok, you can laugh a little bit, but only a little bit.

    And for the record, I didn’t dump the bike.  I stayed upright the whole time!!

    Gone Fishin’

    Earlier this week Nathan went fishing and I cleaned ants out of our stove.

    This post is about fishing though, not ants.

    Nathan and Brian (another MAFer) have been talking about going fishing with Pak Asadhi, one of our friends here, for a few weeks now. They have been trying to develop a frienship with him and fishing is something they all enjoy.   So, with a break from school this week they decided to go!  First they had to purchase fishing rods.  The rods aren’t quite like the fishing rods we know in the States.  There’s no reel, just a long pole with a hook on the end and they are about 15 feet long.

     

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    When they arrived at the lake, they had to walk across this bamboo bridge to get out to the fishing area.  I think that a woman must be in charge of the decorating; look at all those pretty plants!

     

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    On the lake, they have built floating bamboo paths for people to walk on.  You can stand anywhere along these little paths to fish.  But be careful!  When Nathan was walking along the path, one of the pieces of bamboo broke and his leg went in the water.

     

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    If you don’t feel like balancing on the bamboo paths, you can also stand in this little bamboo structure!

     

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    Ok, so you’ve found your place to fish and now you need to set your bait. 

    No really, this is the bait.  It’s some kind of seaweed or seagrass.

    It’s slippery stuff, so you just do your best and wrap it around the hook.

     

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    Ready, Set, Fish!  Brian chose one of the bamboo paths to fish from.

    Is it crazy that all I can think of when I look at this picture is that I’d love an upclose picture of that yellow flower? 

     

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    Nathan and Pak Asadhi. 

    By all appearences, you would think it was cool that day at the lake.  But this is Indonesia so, it wasn’t.  Many Indonesians wear long sleeves and pants outside to protect themselves from the sun.  Nathan followed suit, also seeking protection from the sun.

     

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    They all got a lot of nibbles that day.  But you have to be quick at setting you hook when you feel a nibble, because otherwise the bait just slips right off. 

    Fish count:

    Nathan: 0
    Brian: 0
    Pak Asadhi: 1

     

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    Maybe this method is more effective!  This guy is fishing with a net.

    Even though they didn’t catch anything, Nathan and Brian had a great time fishing with Pak Asadhi!

    Hopefully they’ll get to do it again soon!

    Go to the Ant, You Sluggard

    WARNING:  This post might gross you out.  It grosses me out.

    On Saturday, I noticed a bunch of egg-carrying ants walking around in my kitchen cabinets.  No thank you.  So, I decided to clean them out.  And this is where the grossness begins.

     

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    This is the inside of my cabinets.  Ants realy are amazing, persistent little creatures.  See the little dirt trails?  They drag it in from the outside and get all cozy inside my cabinets.

     

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    We frequently find dirt, ants and ant eggs inside, on top of, and underneath our dishes. 

    I told you this was gross.

     

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    I took everything out of the cabinets and swept it out.  This is all the dirt/ants/ant eggs that came out of there.  Yuck.  And that wooden stick once was a support beam, but now is just a sad little broken stick.

     

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    Raid is my friend.  After removing everything from the cabinets and sweeping it out, I sprayed it with Raid.  There’s nothing like spraying poison in the place you store your bowls and plates!  But being left with the choice of ant babies or Raid, I chose Raid.

     

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    After letting the Raid do it’s magic, I washed the whole cabinet out with bleach, let it dry and swept again.

    More dirt.  But less than the first time.  Making progress!

     

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    Ta-Dah!  All clean!

    Until…an hour later I went back and found more ants!!!  Seriously ants? 

    So, I did this whole process one more time.  More ants, ant eggs and dirt.  Ugh.

    The worst part of this whole thing?  My househelper swept a whole bunch of dirt out of there earlier this week! 

    Living in Indonesia has brought whole new meaning to this verse: “Go to the ant, you sluggard; it has no commander, no overseer or ruler; yet it stores it’s provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.”  (Proverbs 6:6-8)

    Ants are amazing little workers! (which I might appreciate a little more if they weren’t working inside my kitchen!)