from recent adventures

Glow's 3rd birthday Glow's 3rd birthday Glow's 3rd birthday Glow's 3rd birthday Glow's 3rd birthday Glow's 3rd birthday Glow's 3rd birthday Glow's 3rd birthday We’ve been busy filling our weekends with adventures of late. They usually involve a trip down south to San Diego, and there are always pit stops to plant nurseries involved. Ben bought two more citrus trees (and he still wants more!), and we picked up some Reed avocados. Oh my guacamole… those things are huge and so creamy! A Reed avocado tree is on our tree wish list, but we haven’t readied the space for any avocado trees yet. Ben’s itching to do so, but he’s always itching to add this or that to the garden all the time. The project list for the backyard never ends, and since we really haven’t spent any weekends at home, that list keeps getting longer and longer.

 

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our date with glow

glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi glow's date with mommy and papi The big three recently went on a sleepover, so Ben and I used that time to take Glow on a special date to go fruit picking. Obviously, the location was clearly chosen by Ben, but this baby of ours couldn’t care less where it was as she had us all to herself. Actually, Ben was vacillating back and forth between us, the fruit, and our tour guide, but compared to having to vie for our attention with the other girls, she was the main star.

Oh she’s such a little ham, but especially when she’s by herself, and she does so much more talking. I think it’s nice to be able to get these one on one times with each of the girls. Ben and I have discussed doing weekly one-on-one dates with the kids; we are hoping to put it into action soon. Time is flying by and we’re trying to do what we can to treasure these moments while we have them.

We spent the evening walking through Adams Acres and Glow was so excited to try all the fruit Mr. Adams was offering us. She was taking charge in leading me through the orchards and was just having the time of her life roaming (and jumping) through this new place. Of course, we were intrigued with all the different things that are grown there, and as proof we came home with bags of fruit, and 5 watermelons (yellow and orange varieties). This just furthered our dreams of having our own u-pick farm one day. It was such an enjoyable evening and I’m so thankful that we were able to give the baby some undivided attention. I think special dates like these are necessary to give each of our children, and I’m hoping we get consistent at carving out time for times like this.

 

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an ode to summer

brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday brave 7th birthday These photos are from Brave’s birthday weekend, and I still haven’t finished recapping all the fun we had this summer, but we are back into the swing of things with school. Well, at least for a few weeks, until the girls are off with their grandparents on another vacation (I guess that means Ben and I get a sort of vacation too). Thus, we have a lot of work to do to make sure their school work is done before they go adventuring.

And while Southern California sort of lives in a perpetual back and forth between spring and summer, gone are the lazy days of play, no agendas, and meeting up with friends. Days are much more structured and homeschooling takes up most of it. I love the carefree days of summer, but I relish structure and can’t wait for the cozy warmth fall and winter bring (even if it is still about 90 degrees where we live).

If you’re stateside, Happy Labor Day friends. Have fun bidding summer farewell with one last hurrah!

 

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the hawker food culture of singapore

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We ate so much in Singapore! There are hawker centers all over the city, which are outdoor food courts of sorts, and they are filled with a wide array of food. Singapore’s cuisine is very diverse, a good mirror of the people and culture in Singapore. There’s a lot of Malay, Chinese, Indian influences (and plenty more cultural influences) in the cuisine and out of all the food we tried, there was just one dish we couldn’t go past one bite.

Each day in Singapore was basically a food tour of the various hawker centers. For one of our lunches there, we even hit up two different hawker centers! Of course, we did other tourist things (see here and here), but the highlight of it all was the food (and the people we became friends with). We went to hawker center after hawker center, and even within one hawker center, we would try a few dishes from one aisle, then move over and try more from the next aisle. I’m thankful that the ladies at Bloesem gave us good tips, and my friend Abby took us to all the best places to experience all the delicious dishes Singapore has to offer.

We learned about “chopping” that would happen at the food centers. “Chopping” is when people would leave a tissue (or a pack of tissue), and I’ve even seen someone leave their work badge, on the table to signify that the seat was taken, and people would respect that. It looked like this… you would enter the food center, find an open table or spot, place your tissue, then walk away to go order your food, and once you have your food, you come back to your tissue and sit down. Everyone knew that seat was spoken for and it was respected. By day 2 of our time at the food centers, we were participating in the seat “chopping” too.

Another thing we learned are meals are more of a community thing among friends. We’re used to each ordering our own dish, and eating our own dish, and maybe sharing a bite or two with each other if we ask. In Singapore, if you’re there with a group of friends, it’s more common to put the food in the middle and just share everything, no asking necessary. It’s not a “this is mine that is yours” kind of deal, but we all share the dishes together. Again, by day 2, we were totally participating in community meals with our friend Abby.

I have so much more to share about the food there, so there will be an entire post (and it will be really long!) dedicated to all the foods we ate there. Seriously, ever since Singapore, I’ve had a deeper appreciation and love for Asian food.

 

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more from the fair

OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 OC FAIR '14 Ben was ready to give up going, and he was ready to start a new tradition, but I insisted we absolutely had to go, and now he’s glad we went. I’m all for it because I love cramming all six of us in a photo booth to take a family picture. I think it makes the whole trip to the fair worthwhile.

The first thing we do is head to the photo booth. Fair food isn’t our thing, so we completely skip that (totally not dietian approved), but we do let the girls ride a couple rides. We only end up staying a couple hours, but it’s enough to have some fun together, and of course, we all go home excited about the newest photo booth strips we get to add to our collection. This visit did end up being extra special because I happen to run into Dana (from Made), it was so fun to have my real life and online world collide!

After seeing this series of photos again, Ben agreed it’s good to keep going as long as we’re able. And how cute are all my girls in that car in the last picture?! I feel like it’s a tiny glimpse of the future with True in the driver’s seat driving all her sisters around. I have a feeling that will be the same seating arrangement they will fall into later.

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