Thursday, August 14, 2014

Inspiring Videos and Summer Reading List

I will be taking a blogging break for a couple weeks. In the meantime, feel free to browse some pages that I had been working on lately: Work for Us, Traveling, Favorites, and my Google+. 

I like listening to podcast or Tedtalk while doing cleaning the house, washing the dishes, or folding laundry; I call it effective multitasking. Some inspirational videos that I watched lately:
The incredible rescue mission. So grateful for these heroes

From now on, I will start saying we're hackschooling. Great speech, Logan! {in case he came across my blog :D}

Love this interview especially the last part:

I always thought I am an extrovert but I changed my mind after realizing how many times I node in agreement while listening to Susan Cain's Ted talk. Turned out I am not as extrovert as I thought I am

Now onto my reading list this summer. As I mentioned before, I never finish the books that I don't like so I don't feel it's fair for me to comment on them. That's why most of my books review will be either good, very good, or great.

Wild at Heart
I went through this book while we were traveling to Indonesia. It is indeed a great book as many have said it is.

The Well Trained Mind

I kept borrowing this book from the library. Finally, I decided to buy it. It stays in our living room as reference that I often look into

Dumbing Us Down

I've been hearing about this book, which get 4.5 stars on Amazon. Finally, borrowed it from the library and read it in a week. Our reasons for choosing to homeschool is more on the benefits instead of the negatives of other choices. This book explain what's going on the other side of the fence. Very interesting read.

Crush It!

Heard about the author from his interview with Michael Hyatt. Love this one as well.

Read Well, Think Well

I haven't finish reading this but so far {1/3 of the book} so good. I learned a few things that I can apply with my kids or myself.

The Call to Brilliance

I just got it from the library. Haven't read a single page so I can't give any comment. Half way into this book during our camping trip. I can't wait to read the rest of the pages.

Also, a bunch of food photography book from the library. My favorite so far is this one:

Plate to Pixele

What books or videos have inspired you lately?

Disclosure: The links in this post are affiliate links

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Field Trip: Swanton Berry Farm

I learned about this place when I saw my new friend's google+ picture at a strawberry farm. I asked her about it and she recommended us to visit the place: Swanton U-Pick Berry Farm, so we did.

Inspired by the Pioneer Woman' second picture on the page. She has a cowboy I have an engineer. :)

This little fella is our quality control guy. He made sure every single one that goes into the box is a good one.  

I love these ladies 

Trying to persuade Fonda to get ears pierce with me

How many shots does it takes to get one good family picture? A LOT!

In case you are wondering how did I make the gif? I didn't. Google+ did it. All I did was upload all the pictures on Picasa/ Google+ then they automatically came up with the Auto-Awesome gift. Thanks Google!

Want some?

In conclusion:
a. It was a great experience. I think it's important for our kids to learn where our food came from. Also to learn that growing and picking strawberries are not easy tasks.
b. The strawberries were organic and fresh although not as sweet as the ones I usually get from Farmer Market
c. The strawberry farm located nearby coastline so it is windy and cold. Don't forget to bring jacket/ sweater.
d. I will bring my own basket/ bucket next time because they only provide those flat boxes that are not easy to carry.

Pictures were taken with Nikon D90 {it's now discontinued and Nikon replaced it with D7100} with Tamron AF 2-75mm f/2.8.

Disclosure: The links in this post are affiliate links

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Our Summer Learning and Activities

We are nearly the end of our summer holidays. We spent the first few weeks of summer with our family in Indonesia, followed by Vacation Bible School at the church nearby.

Afterward, the kids spent two weeks at summer camp when I was called for jury duty.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Stir-Fried Water Spinach/ On Choy

This is a well-known veggie dish in Indonesia. Not so much here. It's been a longgggg time since the last time I cooked this dish so when I saw it at the Farmer Market I quickly bought it. It taste soooo good unlike the regular On Choy that I bought at Supermarket. So the following week I went back to the seller to confirm if it's really On Choy.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Our Favorite Carry On for International Flight

We fly back to Indonesia almost every year. The flight is long and expensive but we believe it's important for the kids and us to meet their grandparents and the rest of their extended family so we make it a priority.

After four round trips with kids I found these carry on to be my favorite. Less is definitely more! 
Each person carries one bag except me. I have an extra totes filled with breads and snacks in case the kids get hungry. The rest of our stuff goes to checked baggage.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Two videos to kick-start your week

 I have been hearing people talk about how good Steve Jobs' 2005 Stanford Commencement Address. I finally listened to the message and thought he indeed gave a great message. After seeing the video, I also listened Bill and Melinda Gates' 2014 Stanford Commencement Address, which I thought was even more important and inspiring:

"Optimism for me isn't a passive expectation that things will get better; it's a conviction that we can make things better – that whatever suffering we see, no matter how bad it is, we can help people if we don't lose hope and we don't look away. Let your heart break. It will change what you do with your optimism." Melinda Gates

Michael Hyatt recently changed his podcast format, which I like even more. His most recent podcast is such a good reminder. I think the title should be: "Three Questions Every Adult Must Answer to Avoid the Drift."

Friday, July 25, 2014

Hiking Trip: Muir Woods and cameras comparison

A friend of mine had been recommending us to go visit Muir Woods National Monument. Finally, we took the time to check out the place ourselves.

For this trip, we decided to bring two cameras to compare the result. If the Point & Shoot is up to par, we won't bring our DSLR on our next trip. So as you see the pictures, you can guess along whether we take it with Point & Shoot or DSLR. I put the answer at the bottom of each picture.


The towering Redwood Trees


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Thai Cucumber Relish

We call it  'acar timun' in Indonesia. I just learned that many people call this Thai Cucumber Relish. It serves as condiment to main dish or quick vegetable side dish that I often make whenever I ran out of time.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

What I buy at Farmer Market and some tips

I loveeee going to Farmer Market. I feel like a kid in a candy store whenever I go there. Fortunately, living in Bay Area gives me access to Farmer Market and wonderful non pesticide produce all year long.

I usually stop by there every other week but since my boys were at summer camp these past two weeks; I got to go there two weeks in the row.

First things first, get the preschooler to help with unloading and arranging the grocery, which is a great practical life skills to have. :)

Things that I usually get there:

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Little Boys Talk

Just a little while ago, this is how he talk:

 Now he talks like this {inside the airplane on the way back to the U.S}: