Nathan is on Instagram!

I know this blog is title “Nathan and Becky…” but really, it’s more my side of life than Nathan’s since I write everything on it.  So, you hear a lot about Elias, cooking, shopping, etc. But there is a whole other side of life over hear: Nathan’s side, which is much more about airplanes and tribal people.  And while he’s not going to start blogging anytime soon (he really doesn’t have time to do that), he has started an Instagram account.

It’s quite possible that I’m biased, but I am totally a fangirl of his account.  It’s so him, and so his life.  So, if you’re on Instagram, head on over to papuapilot’s account and check out a little slice of Nathan’s life!

Nathan Instagram

Instagram Nathan

Instagram Nathan

Instagram Nathan

Instagram Nathan

Summer Days

I probably could have just titled this post “Days” because pretty much everyday is like Summer over here.  But “Summer Days” for me evokes memories of long hours of playing outside, laying in the grass, and drinking in the warm sun.  How lucky is Elias that he not only gets to do this nearly everyday, but he also has friends who live just a hop, skip and a jump away to enjoy it with?

summer all the time

with these fun friends

so much fun

in the dirt

outside

Truth be told, I get tired of the heat and long for cool breezes and Pumpkin Lattes, but Elias loves it!  I hope that some day he looks back at this and remembers the mud soup, the dirty construction projects and the friends he shares it all with.

Fuel Run!

One of the less glamorous parts of Nathan’s job is doing fuel runs.  In Nabire, the fuel truck is not able to come over to our part of the airport, which means that the guys have to drive the airplanes over to the main apron to get fuel.  Did you know that when on the ground airplanes are steered by pedals at the pilots feet?

Yesterday, Elias and I decided to tag along with Nathan.

Father and Son

I chopped Nathan’s head off in this picture, but I love how Elias is looking at him.  He really loves his daddy and often tells me that daddy is his favorite.

Father and son

That’s better :)  My handsome men.

The Apron

This is the main apron where most of the airplanes come to drop off, get fuel and load up again.  The main Nabire terminal is also here, but MAF passengers come to our terminal on base.

Heli landing

Lawnmower

While we were waiting our turn for fuel, we saw some fun things.  A helicopter landed right in front of us!  And we also saw the tractor that mows the grass around the airstrip (Elias was super excited about the lawnmower, so I took a picture for him.)

Fuel helper

Once the fuel truck arrives, Elias helps attach this cable to the airplane.  This grounds it so there are no sparks causing fires (that’s sound right…).

The manager

This particular Kodiak has single point fueling, which makes it super easy to get fuel.  In other aircraft, you have to crawl on top of each wing to put the fuel directly into the tanks, but with single point it fills more like a car.

Watching big jets

Watching big jets

While we waiting for the plane to fill (it takes awhile to fill up with hundreds of gallons of fuel), We saw a big jet land and then come to the apron.  Nabire is becoming a pretty busy airport!  We are hoping that they open routes to Bali and/or Jakarta soon.  This would make it so much easier (and cheaper!) for us to get out of Papua.

I was there too!

See, I was there too.  Elias is in a “don’t take my picture” kind of phase, so this is the best I could get of the two of us.

We had such a fun time doing a family fuel run!

Things I Make Regularly: Other

I didn’t know how to categorize these recipes, so I’m just putting them in a generic “other” category.  A cookbook writer, I am not.  :)

These three things are things I had never made before moving overseas.  And, my goodness, I was missing out.  I told you before and I’ll tell you again, cooking from scratch is dangerous…you may never go store-bought again!

Ranch

Ranch Dressing

For the first several years we lived here, I brought ranch packets and made my dressing that way (because every good American has ranch in their fridge, amIright?).  But then my mother-in-law introduced me to this homemade ranch and I’ve haven’t bought a ranch packet since.  Even when we were in the U.S. a few months ago, I made this from scratch.  It is totally worth the extra effort!

Ingredients:

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup buttermilk (for my overseas friends, you can either bring buttermilk powder from the U.S. or order it on Vitacost, or you can substitute with regular milk mixed with a little vinegar)
2 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 Tbsp minced parsley (or 1 Tbsp dried)
2 Tbsp minced chives (or 1 Tbsp dried)
2 Tbsp minced green onion or scallion
1 tsp white wine vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Mix together all ingredients.  Enjoy!  (This should be stored in the refrigerator.  The original recipe says it will last for 3 days, but I’ve kept it in there longer than that…that is if you have any left after taking ranch shots because it’s that delicious)

Chicken Broth

Crockpot Chicken Broth

This is another one of those things that I put off learning to make for years.  And I really don’t know why because it is SUPER easy and bone broth has some great health benefits that you don’t get from bouillon.

Ingredients:

Chicken bones (I usually roast a whole chicken and then use the bones after we’ve eaten all the meat)
1-2 carrots, cut into large chunks
1 medium onion, quartered (I used green onion in the picture because that’s what I had, but any onion will do)
2 cloves garlic (I don’t even peel them)
2 sticks of celery, chopped (I use celery seed for the flavor since we can’t get celery easily)
1 bay leaf
Water
Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

1.Place chicken bones into crockpot, along with carrots, onion, garlic, celery, and bay leaf.  Add enough water to fill crockpot.  Cook on low for 8-12 hours.
2. Drain, reserving liquid.  (You could eat the veggies at this point if you so desire)  Add salt and pepper to liquid, mixing well.  Pour into gravy separator (you can skip this part if you don’t have a separator, the fat will rise to the top and you can scoop it out with a spoon later) and then pour into jar for storage.  I keep at least one jar in my fridge and the rest go into the freezer for later use.

Yogurt

Yogurt

I definitely never imagined making yogurt from scratch…because who does that?  Missionaries, that’s who. :)  Homemade yogurt is super yummy and doesn’t have all the preservatives that store bought yogurt has.  And, guess what?!  It is also super easy to make (especially if you have an amazing husband that buys you a Yogourmet, but that’s definitely not required).

Ingredients:

4 cups hot water (110* F)
2 cups full cream powdered milk (I have never made this with fresh milk…I suppose you could if you heated it to 110*F)
Yogurt starter (there are many places to buy yogurt starters…but the easiest thing to do is to ask your neighbor for a little bit of yogurt to use as a starter.  Once you have made a batch of your own yogurt, freeze a small portion to use the next time.  But this does always leave me wondering how yogurt ever came to be without a starter.  Where did the starter start?)

Optional:

sugar, honey or other sweetener if you prefer your yogurt to be sweet
vanilla extract, because yum.

Directions:

1. Mix together all ingredients (including sugar/honey, etc.)
2. Pour into Yogourmet and leave it alone until it reaches desired thickness (about 4 hours for me).  If you do not have a Yogurt maker, you can also put the mixture into jars and then keep the jars warm in a water bath (but you’ll have to keep changing the water).  Some friends have also make the water bath in an insulated ice box to help keep the water warm longer.
3.  Once it’s reached your desired thickness, place in fridge to cool.

 

Get out there and get cooking from scratch!  You won’t regret it (and neither will your tastebuds!)