Monthly Archives: January 2012
I love lists. We have a shopping list hanging on the fridge for the Hubs where we write down groceries and household items we need, another shopping list I use for personal items or things for ‘Timan’ and every time I’m going to town, even just for having a coffee with a friend, I take my list with me, just in case I see the desired item. And then I have to buy it right away, otherwise I won’t be able to get it for the next 2 years, or ever. That’s how we roll here in Paradise.
Of course I also have a bucket list. A list of all the things I want to do before I … ahem … cash in my chips.
There was a time I would have had only one list. But now,
a couple of many years later, I have two lists. Plus the list with the things I have done already.
And the items keep moving forward on those lists, slowly from the last one towards the first one. Here they are:
List #1: Five things I’ve done
• Get out of the cold and live in the tropics.
• Travel and work in different countries and cultures while living the ‘beach-bum’ life. Earning a living by doing what I love most (diving) in the best places for scuba diving around the globe.
• Get a tatoo.
He is my buddy since almost a decade:
• Find and marry the partner who is willing to keep up with my sometimes
stubborn determined and quirky unconventional behavior.
• Have a child, give birth.
List #2: Five things I want to do
• Learn to speak Creole. I understand almost everything, just the talking is rather difficult because I mix it up with French.
• Scuba dive in Antarctica, under the ice. Preferably with a good camera, but I’d go without, no problem.
• Teach my son how to scuba dive and plant in him a life long passion for the marine environment. His dad will take care of the boating skills, I don’t doubt it. And maybe he (or both of them) will be coming along with me to dive with the Seals and Orcas.
• Buy the perfect house, with the perfect yard, in the perfect neighborhood, with the perfect view where I want to get old with the Hubs. Working on this one. Sigh.
• Sit with the Hubs on the front porch of this house, watching the ocean, sipping a
strong coffee, good glass of wine soothing herbal infusion and talking about the good old days some 40 years ago, when our son just started preschool.
List #3: One utopian idea I dream about
• Travel into the abyss, for example the Mariana Trench or any other ocean trench, to see with my own eyes the creatures that live in the dark and cold. I’d like to explore the great depth and maybe find a new form of life. And give it my name and become very famous. 😉
Maybe I was born a couple of centuries too early, or maybe not? …
and with ‘Yeah Write’:
But I’m curious, what’s on your list to do (or your dream of doing) before you kick the … ahem … before you leave?
All of a sudden my days have so many hours. I still can’t believe it, it’s just wonderful. Oh, life is good. 🙂
Every single day since years I’m getting up at the crack of dawn, but starting this week I am free, I can do whatever I want, whenever I want (for 6.5 hours per day). I’m still getting up at the same time though, but I don’t mind. Oh, life is good.
1. This week I relearned to drink my coffee totally relaxed and in peace. There was nobody who constantly pulled on my legs, was whining about this and that and wanted me very urgently – meaning this very second – to build a ‘bobblebeckerbus’ with LEGOs. Oh, life is good.
2. This week I relearned to use the bathroom all by myself. What a pleasure. Oh, life is good.
3. This week I relearned to enjoy cleaning the house while whistling to a melody on the radio.
4. Actually this week I relearned to listen to whatever music I wanted to hear. Oh, life is good.
5. This week I relearned to be myself again, hmm, at least for those 6.5 hours per day. Oh, life is good.
6. This week I had a happy little son walking home with me in the afternoon, telling me about the things he was doing and who and what he was playing with. Oh, life is good.
7. This week I relearned to have fun playing with blocks and LEGOs and cars again, because the dinner was already made. Oh, life is good.
8. This week I relearned to stay very calm. I really was a good girl, I didn’t freak out, I didn’t give a spiced answer and I even forced a smile when the tw@t of a dermatologist laughed and said ‘Oh, is this your first child? He he he, that’s why. And eczema has nothing to do with calcium deficiency. No, he he. But here in the tropics a lot of children have skin problems. It may go away eventually. And your son is looking fiiiine.’ Sure, now that the eczema has gone – because of the calcium supplement and wet wraps – he’s fine. He wasn’t fine though when I scheduled the appointment a few months ago.
(Dry coarse skin, dermatitis, hyperpigmentation and eczema can be a symptom of Hypocalcemia (calcium deficiency) according to the Cleveland Clinic and it looks as if this was a reason (or maybe the reason) why ‘Timan’s eczema kept flaring up.)
After she finished laughing she gave me a three-month supply of Cetrizine (antihistamine) and Hydrocortisone, just in case the rash would come back. And yes, this was after I told her that I was successfully trying to get off the steroids. Having specialists from other countries with not much experience who are pushing certain medicines to make it easy for them, these are the beauties of a free healthcare system. 😦
Luckily I got ‘Timan’s eczema under control, I found the triggers, without a doctor. Oh, life is good.
9. This week I didn’t care about those downsides in Paradise, the sometimes rude behavior people show here, because ‘Timan’ is healthy and happy, the Hubs is healthy and happy and the Mommy is healthy and happy. Oh, life is good.
10. This week, today, I’m finally going to the beach all by myself.
I wish everyone a great weekend.
For more of those important lessons life is teaching you, head over to ‘Life Ever Since’:
P.S. I’m not the only person complaining about the public healthcare in this country. Everyone here makes the same experience. It’s sad, but if you don’t have to pay for it, you wont get the service either. Unfortunately there are not so many other options, private specialists are rare.
But for now, life is good. 🙂
Yesterday my little baby boy has reached another milestone. Yesterday ‘Timan’ had his first official day in ‘creche’, or preschool, or kindergarten, it’s all the same here in Paradise. From now on the tot will go to school for 5 days per week for 6.5 hours per day, for the rest of his life. No, not really, but you know what I’m talking about. And he is only 3 years, 5 month and 1 week old. Nope, I didn’t cry, really not. 😉
Gone are the days of spontaneous trips to the beach, nobody is going to help me folding the laundry, baking new recipes, nobody is sleeping in with me until 7:30am (this has really happened, but only when I put dark towels behind the curtains to completely block out the light), but …
… different times are emerging on the horizon.
Not only will I finally be able to do a peaceful shopping spree without having anyone in the dressing room wanting to get out (to go potty or just because), I will also have blissful and relaxing times at the beach with a drink in one hand and a book in the other. And most of all the fun in playing with ‘Timan’ will come back. All my chores for the day I will have accomplished by that time and the little one will have my undivided attention. This is going to be a win/win situation for both of us. 🙂
In November the tot already went to ‘creche’ for three familiarization days and even though he was happy when the three days were over, he was actually looking forward to go again. And on Sunday he told me ‘Mommy, you know, when you leave me there, I’m just gonna cry a little bit. I’m a big boy now, I’m not a baby, so I’ll stop.’
When we left home in the morning he was still in high spirits making goofy faces.
After arrival at the classroom he grabbed a toy to keep himself busy, but he was slowly getting a little uneasy.
And this time I didn’t make the mistake from the past to hang out at the school for too long. I told ‘Timan’ that I’m leaving, he stared to sob. I gave him a kiss and told him that I will pick him up in the afternoon, he started to cry. I left, he stared to scream. I waited out of his sight and after not even 2 minutes, the crying stopped. So I went back, peeked through the window and saw him peacefully playing with a truck. But I had to swallow a couple of times. Sigh.
And when I arrived in the afternoon to pick up the tot, everybody was quietly gathered around the ‘Miss’ and listening to a story.
But on the way home I realized that my legs and my behind will be super toned in no time at all because I have to climb the ‘1000’ steps up and down two times per day. 😉
After his first official day in ‘creche’ ‘Timan’ fell asleep before I even could put on his PJ.
Let’s find out how the 2nd, the 3rd and the following days in preschool turn out. Because ‘Timan’s academic career has started now, or so we were told by the ‘Head Teacher’. She was even talking about evaluation in preschool. I guess times have changed much more than I thought they have since I was a kid.
A little late I’m linking up my tots first day at school with ‘Yeah Write’, hop over and check out the other entries if you like:
Better late then never, right?
But first, please tell me how do you feel about ‘evaluating’ the skills in early childhood?
I just knew this was going to happen. There will be a day I don’t have a decent snack for the tot available. I had fruits, but ‘Timan’ was craving for a cookie, something with carbohydrates. Of course it was supposed to be reasonable healthy and yummy and not causing his skin to flare up with an eczema or a rash a couple of days later because of his food intolerance.
Bake it myself, that’s the solution. I thought for a while, took a little bit from here and a little bit from there, I used oats instead of an egg and the outcome you find here: Mango Drop Cookies with a Twist.
You can actually fiddle around with the twist yourself, make as tangy as you like. My recipe however is child-prove, tested and approved by the tot himself.
And with a little help the master ‘Timan’ was ready to help too. And how concentrated with his task he was.
Mango Drop Cookies with a Twist (dairy free, egg free, corn free)
3/8 cup (3 oz/90ml) olive oil
3/4 cup (150gr) brown sugar, loose
1 tsp vanilla essence
3 ounces (90ml) mango juice
1 medium mango, peeled, cut into small pieces and mashed (I ended up with 75gr)
2 1/3 cup (300gr) whole-wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon, ground
1 tsp ginger, ground (this is the twist, add more if you like)
1/4 tsp salt
4 tbsp (20gr) instant oats
Preheat oven to 180C/350F/Gas 3-4
Mix olive oil with brown sugar, vanilla extract and mango juice, add mashed fresh mango and combine.
In separate bowl sift flour and baking soda, mix in cinnamon, ginger, salt and oats. Combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients.
The more you mix the batter, the less ‘fluffy’ the cookies will be.
Using a teaspoon scoop portions of batter and drop them on a greased cookie sheet using another spoon. Place the drops about 1.5 inch apart, the cookies will rise a little and flatten a bit, but not too much.
Bake for about 12 minutes or until they start to turn brown on the edge, depending on the cookie size. Don’t overbake.
Let the cookies cool on the cookie sheet for a couple of minutes before you use the spatula for flipping pancakes to lift them off the sheet and transfer them to a wire rack. Let them completely cool and store the cookies in an airtight container.
Et voilà, you have some nutritious and healthy cookies for an afternoon coffee or a yummy treat for your kids lunch box. They are not crunchy, but not really chewy either, more of a cake or muffin texture.
The cookies here in the tropics only stay crunchy for about 14.99 seconds anyway. So maybe the dairy-free, egg-free and corn-free ‘mango drop cookies with a twist’ would be a little more crunchy if they were baked in a dry climate, or if you would use candied mango pieces instead of fresh mango, or if you would add an egg or an egg-replacement. Drop a line, I would like to know. However for me they are perfect the way they are.
What cookies are you baking for your family these days?
By now you probably know we are living on an island, far away in the middle of the ocean, with a tropical climate, with a lot of sun and a lot of rain and the most beautiful beaches. Of course we go for a swim as often as we can.
But my idea of ‘a great day on the beach’ is not exactly what my son has in mind. I would love to relax under a palm-tree, with a good book in one hand and a good drink in the other and just chill. And once in a while I would get up and dive into the turquoise-blue water for a refreshing swim.
But there is this lovely 3-year-old boy who has other plans.
This is what ‘Timan’ considers a perfect day on the beach:
I’m still alive, because I’m fast, he didn’t get me (yet). 😉
Tell me about your outings with your little one, when you ended up doing nothing what you wanted to do, but doing everything your kid had in mind. Or is it just us?