Monday, December 31, 2007
He ate really a lot. Even before the sekihan was ready he started eating the side dishes already. Really was a hungry birthday boy :p
We had Soba for dinner. Japanese eats soba on New Year eve because soba is symbol of happiness: thin and long. Meanwhile Indonesian eats noodle on birthday for a long life. Hopefully Iki will have long and happy life. We also ate Japanese New Year food Osechi and left some for tomorrow :p
He got Thomas and Friends audio book from his auntie family, and various Thomas and Friends goodies from his grandparents. He screamed excitedly everytime he opened the wrapping and found his favourite character goods inside. All those presents were given earlier since today they are not in town.
And today for the first time he slept by himself. I just tucked him to bed, rubbed his stomach and gave little massage on his feet as usual; then he told me to go out because he wanted to sleep by himself. Earlier in the afternoon he also took a nap by himself. A big relief for mama-chan hahahaha
Happy Birthday, Iki-chan. We love you and are very proud of you. Hope you'll live your life to the fullest (^___^)
Sunday, December 30, 2007
We are settling down now. These few days have been hectic with unpacking our hand carry luggages (9 boxes and 3 suitcases), and shopping for house needs. In Korea we were almost fully facilitated by the company but here we really have to buy everything. We rented an empty apartment from Hiro's company's apartment complex. Lucky we got the futon set (Japanese bed style) as a gift from my parents in law, and we could also borrow some stuffs from them until our shipment arrives from Korea. I got headache counting the money we must spend, as well as thinking about the 47 more boxes coming from Korea within three weeks. I haven't even finished unpacking our hand carry, and feel so exhauted now :))
Moving out was not really a pain for me. The worst part was the cleaning part only. Then I just have to sort out which stuffs to be brought by ourselves, to be sent by air, and to be sent by ship. It took almost 24 hours (yeah yeah...we did it on the last two days HAHA). On the moving day 5 persons from the moving company came to our apartment and did all the packing stuffs. I just gave order and watched them working hehehe, They were very professional and to my surprise they finished packing the 47 boxes neatly only within 3 hours!! Later on the company will also unpack the big boxes and here I will just have to arrange our stuffs (but later would be ME only, because Hiro won't be available anymore).
That company even took care of our mountainous trashes, taking care of my christmas tree and helped us packing our hand carry luggages. But we have to pay 6000 USD for such professionalism. Oh, not us. Hiro will send the bill to his company :p
Tomorrow is Iki's birthday. But I couldn't prepare any cake for him. I made a big plan actually, baking a Thomas train birthday cake for him. I even looked for the train mould and bought it already. But it's still a big mess here and it's impossible to bake any cake for him :( . Haven't even bought anything to be cooked tomorrow. I have no power anymore to go out for shopping after he slept tonight.
Last pipis at APT in Korea
Yeah...I think I am ready to start our new life here. I must learn a lot this time, especially about Japanese language and culture. Must adapt to this new society with lots of rules. Let's just see if I'll grumble here later on hehehe
Gotta go for some more cleaning before going to bed. Be right back with more stories tomorrow (hopefully! :p)
Friday, December 28, 2007
I felt sad when we left our empty apartment this morning, we we said goodbye to our very kind apartment's security guard, and when we waved goodbye to Hiro's translator from taxi. Goodbye Incheon, goodbye Korea. Memories here have special place in my heart, and can be read somewhere in my blog :p
Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Papa-chan even woke up early this morning. We directly headed to the Christmas tree, and Iki screamed happily when he saw big yellow present for him waiting under the tree. These past few weeks he's been waiting forward for Santa Claus' coming and asked for "uuh uuhh" (Thomas train) and "nyanya" (cat - in Japanese) as his Christmas wishes.
And look what Santa brought for him (^__-)
And because it's impossible for him to have a real cat, Mrs. Santa made a quick cat cupcake:
He ate it excitedly with spoon!!! He didn't want to make his hands dirty (@_@)
Then we went to Bokjuk restaurant for lunch. Definitely was our last visit there, since we are nearly at the end of our staying here. Papa-chan bought me a pair of cheap winter boots as Christmas present (?!), for emergency use during our ski and Hokkaido trip later on.
We had steak for dinner, with boiled veggies, potato salad and a bottle of red wine. I made simple Christmas decoration to attract Iki's attention from his railway set.
And he was excitedly trying to blow off the Santa Claus and Snowman candles - and finished his dinner as well.
We closed this day by turning off all the lights in this house and stared at the sparkling Christmas tree together, just like what we did last year. Iki bowed thank you to the Christmas tree (for the presents he got hahaha), and said goodbye to all the hanging decorations there because tomorrow I will have to pack it.
This would be my last posting from South Korea. Tomorrow the internet connection will be stopped and all the computers will be packed too. See you all again with other stories from our new rented apartment in Japan (^_____^)
He gave us a bottle of big Korean Soju as a farewell present. I almost dropped y tears. Oh how I hate farewells!!!. Thank you, Ajosi. We will definitely come to your restaurant if we got any chance to visit Incheon in the future. Your food is one of our best memories of living in South Korea
Monday, December 24, 2007
And this afternoon Hiro "operated" piggy's tummy and brought all the coins to the bank. We thought me might get about 50,000 won - 100,000 won in total (USD 50 - USD 100)
But surprisingly we got 269,600 won = about 269 USD = IDR 2,500,000!!
The coins only filled the piggy's feet area. Couldn't imagine how much would it be if the piggy's full!!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Yeah...it was a nice ending. Nice food, nice people, nice goodbyes.
But the farewell party was like a very loud alarm in my head: WAKE UP AND START PACKING, LAZY BUTT!!!!
We're going to move out next week, but I haven't even packed one single box yet (#_#). Arrrgghhhhh
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
I still have my flu so actually I planned to stay warm at home today, but I didn't have any heart to see his curious face about snow. Seemed that he didn't have any memory about snow he saw last year (_ _;).
As predicted he was really really happy. The snow was not that much though but the thin layer was enough to make him excited. He tried to catch the snowflakes and stamped his feet around while saying "uwawa...uwawaaa" (means bubbles in Japanese). He thought the snow's the same with soap bubble :p
He didn't want to go home then. Enjoying himself a little bit too much. We stayed outside for more than 1 hour. As the result now I got my body temperature raised (_ _o). Oh my.......!
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Usually Iki doesn't like to eat lasagna but this time he ate a lot. So happy to see him eating enthusiastically, and somewhat for us that lasagna tasted really really good. Might be the best lasagna I've ever had in this house. It was a very nice farewell to my lovely oven. My very first oven.....
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Feel like there's hammer inside my head and muscle pain all over my body. The worst is the vomitting part. I hate to see the food I cooked with all my effort being thrown out.
I have lots of things to do. Haven't started to pack anything yet. Why should I get this sick at this time?!?! Grrhhhh
Saturday, December 08, 2007
He was driving me nuts. I knew it's because he couldn't pass his BM. He felt uncomfortable but he simply kept he "trash". He was too afraid to push because he always got pain. He asked me to put him on his toilet seat for many times though, but once he felt that "it's really time to push", he got really panicked and jumped out of the toilet (>.<). He didn't want to play by himself, he didn't want to eat, he didn't want to go out, he didn't want to sleep. He was just being clingy the whole day. Meanwhile I also got my period yesterday, with very bad mood because of stomach pain and muscle pain all over my body. One thing leads to another, I couldn't remember the details, I hit Iki on his butt.We both were so shocked. He cried out loud for few minutes while I checked his butt, trembling. I could see my palm's mark on it. I hugged him and said sorry until he stopped crying. He looked at me in the eyes, bowed sorry, smiled and hugged me back. It made me feel even worse. What a terrible mother I am!!!!!!!!!!
I cried silently in the kitchen after he's asleep. I could still hear the loud SPANK in my head. No, I don't say a mother who spanks her baby is bad. It's just I promised myself that I wouldn't hit Iki. I had bad experiences during my childhood so we (Hiro and I) have decided not to hit Iki at all. But I did it yesterday. I'm a horrible mother!!!!!!!
Look how sweet he is....and how could I spank him?!?!?!
I emailed Hiro right away yesterday and last night we had a midnight talk after he got back home. He suggested me to go out of Korea for refreshing and offered a getaway weekend alone to Indonesia. Ehm...getaway WEEKEND?!
Let's say...I'll leave Korea on Saturday morning, arrive in Surabaya at night and have nasi bebek as dinner. Eat ayam penyet Bu Kris for breakfast, buy some traditional snacks, have kwetiau siram Apeng for lunch, eat Bakso pak Salam for second lunch, find tahu tek tek for tea time, and buy mie dok dok to be brought to the plane. Then I'll be back in the plane to Incheon on Sunday night.
Oh oh oh....what a getaway!!!!
I said thanks but I refused. Maybe next time :p
But I promised him not to hit my little boy anymore. Forever!
Sunday, December 02, 2007
Kimchi is Korean traditional fermented side dish served almost everywhere here in Korea. If as an Indonesian chili sauce is a perfect match for white rice, then for Korean it's Kimchi. There are many kinds of kimchi, and in fact not all Kimchi are spicy as what the world imagine as they heard the word.
Anyway these are type of Kimchi I like the most:
These Kimchi are the most common one, could be found at almost every restaurant. I like the fresh one and those are served at Seolongtan restaurant nearby our apartment are my favourite.
One fact about Kimchi I figured out when I was in Korea already was that the Kimchi served on our table could be some leftover from the previous customers, and the restaurant will also serve our leftover Kimchi to the next customers. And people do not use special spoon or chopstick to take Kimchi from the small saucers. It's the same chopsticks they use for eating (@_@). "Sharing" is one of Korean's important motto.
The Kimchi at that restaurants taste good anyway, so I kept eating it. Hey....if you live in Roma, live like Romans do. I live in Korea so I have to follow at least some of Korean customs :p.
But we're guarded by Hepatitis B injections for safety reason :p
Friday, November 30, 2007
I should have started (at least) thinking to pack our stuffs. But I just couldn't help it when I saw the box....
So this afternoon we (Iki and I) built the christmas tree :p, and we had sooo much fun working together (^__^)
I just wanted to feel christmas in this apartment for the last time.......
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
I'm so relieved. That Hiro is not being sent to Africa this time, that we will still be together for some more months until next placement is decided. But part of me is feeling sad....
I sat quietly beside sleeping Iki this afternoon when I just heard the news. Somewhat I felt so sad to leave my bedroom. To leave my kitchen. To leave our home, our very first home.
We're leaving Korea on 28 December 2007. I'll definitely miss this apartment, this neighborhood and this city.....
*Am thinking where to start packing now (@_@)*
Monday, November 26, 2007
I also had my hands done. Felt relax and prettier afterwards :p.
I actually want to have my own manicure and pedicure at home, but I don't have much free time. In addition, the final result is always not satisfying. I don't understand why I couldn't clean the dead skin from me feet completely as what they usually do at nail salon.
Does any of you know about manicure and pedicure by your own at home?
Sunday, November 25, 2007
We ordered Ganjang Gyejang for two, and as usual it came in a minute accompanied with lots of side dishes. Various kinds of Kimchi, Mackerel in Korean hot sauce, steamed egg, fresh Korean salad leaves, Kimchi chige, a big bowl of various kinds of veggies in sesame sauce, and steamed rice (mixed with kind of small nuts) in large bowls.
Ganjang Gyejang is soy sauce pickled raw crab. Yes, raw crab, marinated in soy sauce for several days until got fermented. They are then cut into pieces and served on our table.
The beautiful orange parts are the eggs, and the green-yellowish parts are like crab's liver and pancreas (which was believed as crab's shit by some Indonesian). Unlike other Korean food I've ever eaten, we could use our hands to eat this crab since it's almost impossible eating that ONLY with chopsticks and spoon. This Ganjang Gyejang was really really good. The crab meat was tender and tasty, and the eggs were melted in my mouth. Sucking them out of the shells made it even more delicious. It's really salty so steamed rice is a perfect match. With those lots of side dishes mentioned above you'll easily get stuffed.
The best part was eating from the biggest shell, usually after finished eating all other crabs' parts.
I put some rice inside the shell, and mixed it well with the eggs and soy sauce from the shell. It's like the best ending eating this food. I got food orgasm afterwards.
One portion of Ganjang Gyejang costed us 20.000 won, so it was 40.000 won in total (about USD 40). But really worthed. Ganjang Gyejang is one of Korean's best food for us.
We said goodbye to the restaurant owner already. A very friendly middle aged man who likes to explain Korean food and talk to Iki everytime we're there. I would love to come to Incheon and eat Ganjang Gyejang again at that restaurant in the future if we got the chance to visit Korea.
Saturday, November 24, 2007
I want this book (>.<)
A farewell for Harry Potter series from J.K Rowling. Only 7 copies are printed and one of them is being auctioned for about USD 120,000 already now. I don't care if it's handwritten and illustrated by Rowling, or if it's leather covered with silver ornaments. I just want to read the story.....the farewell story of Harry Potter.......
Hiroshi Tachi) and his teenage daughter Koume (Yui Aragaki). One day, the two ride a train together after visiting Kyoichiro's mother-in-law. He sees it as a chance to get to know his daughter better, but he ends up getting more than that - by some mysterious force, both Kyoichiro and Koume end up with their mind in the other's body! Unfortunately, they have no choice but to swap lives, pretending to be each other at school and work. (synopsis is quoted from Tokyograph)
I found that this drama is hilarious yet touching. 4 out of 5 stars from me. This drama teaches how a father should understand the daughter (especially a teenager), and how a daughter should respect and appreciate a father. A good view for a lost father-daughter relationship, meanwhile it's a great refreshing for us (^__^)
Friday, November 23, 2007
It was lunch time so the restaurant was pretty crowded. The menu list was in three languages: Korean, English and Japanese so we didn't get any difficulty to decide which one to choose. Toooo bad I forgot to take picture so I couldn't remember the Korean name of porridge we ordered. I had porridge with mushroom and oyster while Hiro had porridge with abalone.
The porridge came in a large bowl with Korean chili paste, kimchi, and braised pork (maybe) in soy sauce as side dishes. The porridge itself had kind of grated nuts and seaweed as topping. It did smell good and I felt starving in a second.
My porridge was really tasty, with rich amount of mushrooms and oysters. The Kimchi was fresh, and for me the pork was really a perfect match for the porridge (I even finished Hiro's). Hiro's porridge was also very delicious but the abalone was cut into tiny pieces, perhaps because abalone is not as cheap as oyster.
This porridge is now on my "Korean Top Food" list. Too bad we only have about 4 weeks left living here, but I hope at least we could have 3 times porridge lunches (we only dine out on Saturday)
Sunday, November 18, 2007
Looking at the mirror made me feel really bad. I barely knew the woman there. She looked overweight and so ugly in her messy hair, tired face, and darkened eyes. So last friday, I decided to call the hair salon to make an appointment for today. It was my first time making an appointment by phone in Korean. Usually body language helps me a lot in communicating, so I was a bit nervous. But I could make it. Seems that my Korean has improved quite a lot. Too bad during our stay here I couldn't learn this language in an appropriate way (read: language school).
I browsed for Japanese short hair style pictures last night and will show them to the hairdresser. Let's see if I'd feel better after having a haircut today hehehe
So excuse me now, I'll go upstair and have my hair done.
Hiro's comment once he saw my new haircut was: "APA ITU?!"
Oh yeah....I DID feel "better"! (#_#)
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
I've tried everything I think is possible to help him. I give him good amount of veggies and fruits (this helps my BM but not his BM!), I give him yakult, I give him fiber rich snacks, I massage his stomach, I give some oil and massage his anus (and now he's "enjoying" it!!), I reduce his milk and give some soya milk instead (though he hates it), and even gave him 2 teaspoons of black coffee suggested by Yun (I thought he wouldn't drink it but he liked it).
Didn't work. He still passes his BM every five days, still in pain.
I brought him to doctor last week and got laxatives to soften his stool. It didn't work. This makes him really uncomfortable and becomes a very irritating boy. He's frustrated, and so I am!
Tonight at last he could sleep at 11 p.m with uncomfortably bloating stomach. I feel so useless that i couldn't help him (_ _o), and feel so tired of controlling my patience (@_@).
Tomorrow I'll bring him to doctor again, asking for stronger medicine. Looking at the amount of food he eats everyday, I'm now worrying the amount of "trash" inside his colon. Won't it lead to bigger problem, like bacteria or any colon infection?!
Any idea or suggestion?! I am so desperate looking at him suffering........
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Pepero Day is an observance in South Korea similar to Valentine's day. It is named after the Korean snack "Pepero" and held on November 11, since the date "11/11" resembles five sticks of Pepero. The holiday is observed mostly by young people and couples, who exchange Pepero sticks, other candies, and romantic gifts.
According to one story, Pepero Day was started in 1994 by students at a girls' middle school in Busan, where they exchanged Pepero sticks as gifts to wish one another to grow "as tall and slender as a Pepero" (Pepero means "thin like a stick"). However, it is more likely it was initiated by Lotte, the company which produces Pepero.So last week boxes of Pepero, in various colors, shapes, and sizes decorated the shops all over Korea. I personally don't really like Pepero's taste because somewhat it's too sweet. But this would be our last Pepero Day in Korea so this year I bought one huge box of almond pepero for Hiro.
Happy Pepero Day (^_____^)
Saturday, November 10, 2007
Friday, November 09, 2007
So I made some for Iki based on his requests (I showed him the pictures and asked him to choose). Not as beautiful as expected, but he was really excited to eat, though at first he played with them.
When I showed the magazine to Hiro, he was not surprised at all, and said it's completely a normal task for a Japanese mother. Later when Iki goes to school I will have to make obento (lunch box) for him everyday. A beautiful obento, e v e r y d a y.
And I wanted to black out to see the examples.........
Other children will bring beautiful lunch boxes and show them off to their friends, so Iki would be very very sad if I couldn't prepare one for him.
Again, I'm one of the most inartistic people in the world (@_@). How could I manage to make such beautiful meal?!?! And how long would it take to make one? What time should I wake up in the morning?)
It's still about 2 more years to go until Iki's kindergarten time, but I'm already horrified!!!!!!!
Saturday, November 03, 2007
They go well with white rice, so sushi and ikura gohan are two best examples. Ikura are salty, tasty, and melt in my mouth at once. Really really delicious. You definitely should try these if you come to Japan by any chance!
I couldn't find Ikura at supermarket here, not sure about sushi restaurant though. Everytime I go to Japan I always request this food to my mother in law. It was kind of dream to bring Ikura to Korea, so I was really really happy when I found Ikura in package at Asahikawa airport (when we went to Hokkaido).
So at last I could eat Ikura in Korea. It was as delicious as always, even little Iki also loves it. Look what he bought in Hokkaido. Ikura shape mini car :))
And Hiro just told me about the story of Ikura.....
Ikura are salmons' eggs. Salmons are born in clear water river and then go to the sea to grow up. They will only lay their eggs on the river where they are from, so they have to swim all the way from the sea back to that river. It's really hard to swim back there. River where they can lay eggs is only clean and clear river, which is not deep river. Can you imagine big long salmon, swimming back from the sea into very narrow river. They have to swim against the stream, got wounds and bruises all over their body. And when they finally arrive at that river, ready to lay their eggs, fishermen catch them and take the eggs......which some are inside my refrigerator now!!!
Friday, November 02, 2007
It is actually my precious chilly sauce, that usually are sent or brought from Indonesia. Whenever I took the chilly bin from refrigerator to add flavor to my food, Hiro always "whispers" to Iki "mama no himitsu so-su" (read: mama's secret sauce).
I was running out of stock so yesterday I tried to make it myself. Got simple recipe from my mom but modified based on ingredients availability here.
Sambal goreng ala Imoet
Yum yum yummy :p
(though Hiro gave me this "ewwww" face when he saw it)
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Autumn's specialties are also sold everywhere. Like mushrooms (many kinds), sanma (mackerel pike), kaki fruit (Japanese persimmon), pear (huge ones!), grapes and chestnut.
Kuri gohan (chestnut rice) is a common Japanese meal to feel aki (autumn), so I also have to serve it on our dinner table. This year we bought peeled chestnut, much more expensive, but worthed (last year we spent hours peeling chestnuts' hard skin, was really a pain in the ass!)
So here's the photo of our dinner tonight
Kuri gohan (chestnut rice)
Mebaru no ni tsuke (boiled mebaru fish)
Hourensou no ohitashi (boiled spinach seasoned with Japanese soy sauce)
Age nasu (deep fried eggplant seasoned with soy sauce and grated ginger)
Wakame miso soup (seaweed miso soup)
Welcome to "Aki", my favourite season of the year. With its beautiful brown-red-orange-yellow tree leaves. And with its nice cool weather, yet enough sunshine to dry my laundry.