I wonder how it feels to, after 30 years, finally have the house of your dreams? Well, this is my parents' dream house and it's beautiful! They put not only their savings, but also their love and energy into creating and building this home. My parents now have their own study rooms, because they both still love to work and they have opposite habits when they do work (my mom needs peace & quiet and my dad loves blaring music), my mom has a huge kitchen to cook in, and most importantly, they have a beautiful garden to contemplate in the afternoons & evenings and where they can see their grandson play football :) Come on over!



About this talk: Nobel Peace laureate Jody Williams brings tough love to the dream of world peace, with her razor-sharp take on what "peace" really means, and a set of profound stories that zero in on the creative struggle -- and sacrifice -- of those who work for it.

I heard this talk just last week and found it so eye-opening and interesting. When I was told that today was the International Day of Peace, I thought this would be the perfect talk of the day :)



I have to share this with you because today I discovered yumminess with only 60/70 calories! My son has been begging me to buy the new Buavita ice cream because he saw some ads in our local warung. And finally today, he took his own money and went to the warung to buy the grape ice cream. We were having an ice cream feast (me with my dear Magnum), when he started reading the sign on the cover of the ice cream: "Real fruit juice, only 70 calories". Suddenly my Magnum looked all wrong, I felt like throwing it away; I couldn't believe the ice cream my son was enjoying had only 70 calories! So there you go, I am sharing this with you so you are informed :) I don't usually promote things but this one's worth it...


Just got this photo of my mom that her friend sent me and I think it's an amazing photo.
My mom has by now probably landed in NY City, preparing herself for the big Clinton Global Initiative meetings. She is representing Yayasan Usaha Mulia, who has recently become a member of the Clinton Global Initiative.
You go Mom!



Florence has such a beautiful voice. I had heard about Florence and The Machine before but it's only last weekend that I really heard the entire album, coming back from Cipanas and absolutely adored it :) This song is my favorite from the album...
There's something about women singers who have strong voices. I feel they give strength to other women listening. Or is it just me? I know that when I'm down and I listen to Tori Amos, Kate Bush or Karen O from Yeah Yeah Yeah, they lift me up.



As you have realized, I haven't posted anything lately. Besides the move to the new house, I was organizing Amal's birthday party, which was celebrated with Mabel whose birthday is 1 day after Amal's. And since we, the moms (see below) were both motivated to make a birthday party for our kids, we decided to make one party for both kids! It was an excellent idea! First of all, because I had a friend to talk to about decorating, food, games, etc. Also, just organizing something with a friend makes everything so much more fun than doing it on your own. All that hard work was really worth it since I got to do it with my good friend Tarra :D

We tried to keep the food as simple as possible. We made a huge batch of spaghetti for kids and parents, fruit salad in a cup for the kids, and we bought sate and sushi for the parents too. Besides these main food, we also provided lots of snacks: chips, chacha, popcorn, and drinks in cooler boxes.

Since we were having a garden party, we knew that the boys would probably play ball but we still prepared several activities for the girls including mask making, cupcake decorating, playing Wii Michael Jackson and a photobooth with props ready. The cupcake decorating and photobooth was actually more of a hit with the moms rather than the kids :)

The birthday cake was made by the Upper Crust, a bakery and catering service started by an American woman many many years ago. She makes excellent chocolate cupcakes for only Rp. 60,000 per dozen. Amal's cake was blue inside (his request) and Mabel's was red velvet.

All in all, it was a great success. I can now rest knowing that my son has had a big birthday bash during his childhood years. Next birthday party will be in his teens...hehehhe....



My uncle and aunt in France are avid travelers and my uncle makes excellent photos, not only beautiful but also gets funny small details which I really appreciate. Recently, they went on a trip to Prague in the Czech Republic and came back with these photos below. I just love the old Skoda car and the poster of the Museum of Communism :)



My big boy is 7 and he's really starting to act like a "little man": he knows what he wants and says what he thinks, whether I like it or not :)
This year, we had another gift hunt (his request) and I documented his running here and there and finding the gifts. He was spoilt as usual and we topped off the morning with a mini donuts birthday cake, shared between Amal, my parents and I.
In my family, it's tradition for the one who has the birthday to choose a restaurant which we go to together to celebrate so I thought it would be good to continue this tradition. So Amal, his dad and I went to a restaurant chosen by Amal for lunch :)
I think birthdays are great! It's really that one day in the year where you're free to do anything you want, choose whatever you want and not think of anything..... so I hope that's what Amal felt today (though he did say in the afternoon "this is the greatest birthday ever!")...

If you wanna see what we did last year, go here :)


It's that time of year again for seeing the whole family, catching up, asking for forgiveness and children queuing for some small change from their aunts, uncles, and grandparents :)
Minal Aidin Wal Faizin to you all.... hopefully whatever we got from this one month of peace and tranquility will continue throughout the year!