Our story – update on Kalia

March 2012. I’m sitting on the children hospital chair crying… no actually, I’m sobbing. My husband’s arms are around me. He’s crying, too.

Our ENT specialist has just came and informed us that our 18-month-old daughter, Kalia, has moderate hearing loss that is progressive and eventually she will be profoundly deaf.

Some people ask, “Why me?” I’m asking “Why her? What good could possibly come of this?”  – that some people was me.

I have the experience of her life flashing before my eyes, or some possible version of her future life. It seems like many of the dreams that I have for my child just got erased.

All this time, she’s never heard a song that I’ve sung. She’s never heard a story that I’ve read. She’s never heard the words, “I love you.” All this time, she’s been living in silent and I never knew or do anything about it. I feel like a failure, what a bad mother!!

I open my eyes. I see my daughter’s face peering up from my husband’s side. She’s watching us, her parents cry. She sees they are distraught. Kalia’s face is full of concern, as if to ask, “What’s wrong?” I smile at the absurdity of the only possible answer. “Well, you can’t hear this whole time and we just found out!”

Then, as she just keep on playing with her sister, following her every steps of the way while keep on glancing at us, I saw her laughing, giggling, like nothing had happens, then I try to imagine Kalia’s perspective: a safe, happy life, surrounded by people who love her. I realize that for Kalia, nothing is wrong. Nothing has changed. Her dreams weren’t lost. She may not have even liked the dreams I had for her.

We make the choice to adopt Kalia’s perspective:

“There’s nothing wrong. It’s always been this way. Mom and Dad, it’s just time for you to learn something new.” ~Kalia

We learn American Sign Language. All four of us. We also opted for Cochlear implants in hoping for some type of technology help.

One years later, August 21, 2013. I sit in Kalia speech and pathology therapist’s office with my now three-year-old Kalia. There is some concerns on her lack of progress in therapy and we are hearing some opinion on why. “Kalia showing some sign on Autism and/or ADHD.”

The tears and mourning are the same, maybe slightly worse. I haven’t had a chance to let this whole having a deaf child settle in, now this? What is Autism, isn’t that only on boys? What is ADHD, what should we do now? Is God just really playing a cruel joke on us? Haven’t she go through enough?

I imagine after Cochlear implants, all will be well…. She will start listening,  she will progress in therapy, she will go to school, we’re all advancing on our sign language ability and all will be okay.

This new life of more evaluation and therapy and group sessions ahead of us almost seems too much. Then, I remember the gift Kalia gave us one years earlier, and I imagine the same words in a slightly different voice:

“There’s nothing wrong. It’s always been this way. Mom and Dad, it’s just time for you to learn something new.” ~Kalia

Ps. after few observations and test, Kalia does not have Autism nor ADHD. We have switch speech therapist since then.

Kalia and Mommy

Life is…

Be kinds to others for everybody is fighting some kind of battle…

Taken from Yahoo Images

 We probably heard that once or few times in our lifetime. I am no exception and not to the saying either.

This year has been interesting to say the least. It starts off very good. Everything seems to start falls into places and I’m happy.

Comes March.. late march is when we heard about Kalia hearing problem. We learned that our beautiful baby girl is hard –hearing.

At that time, I don’t ever recall hearing more devastating news in my life.

I was so overwhelm with grief and guilt – for whatever reason. It wasn’t a good time.

 April came then things are slowly getting better again, both of my parents are here! I’m so happy I get to be a child again.

I love waking up to the sound of my parents talking about stuff over their breakfast.

It’s such a fond childhood memory where I wake up to see my dad with the newspaper and his cup of coffee on the table

And my mom sitting next to him while putting on make-up commenting on the news…

It’s comforting…

 Then June came, my dad have to leaves. He needs to go back to Indonesia to tidy up some business deal.

We made plan of him returning back in the fall so I can shows him beautiful CO during the fall season    

.. and its Tyra’s birthday as well.

We have so much plan….

 Then July came.. exactly one month after I say good bye to him at the airport, I have to say good bye to him again,..

This time forever…

God decided that it’s time for my dad to come back home for good. Leaving us here grieving, wondering why…

 Now we’re in October.. how time flew…

I survive the first holiday without my dad.. another one is around the corner..

 Leaves are changing, air is crispier. I wish my dad can see how beautiful it is here now..

I started remembering the plan we made…   promises I made to him.. 

 Life is cruel…

 Many – many times I wish I go back to my childhood.. When the life is so care free.

Playing and playing and playing with my friends…

 Life is cruel..

Then I remember something… a saying from Hadist

I said to Allah, I hate life.

Allah replied, who said love life. Love me and life will be beautiful.

A stroll down memory lane…

Have you ever taken back into your past or childhood by a smell, taste, songs or picture? This past weekend, all of that happening to me.

 I just open a bottle of liquid soap that my sister got me from Indonesia. The scent just automatically take me back on the day I still living there, taking a shower at my bathroom in Indonesia.

As I was cleaning my little cabinet where I hold my little perfume collection, a bottle of Este lauder perfume – beautiful fell off and as I pick it up, I spray it little bit on my wrist. It was my mom’s perfume when I was growing up. The scent take me back in time where I spent time in her arms and how I can smells that on her ….

 And here’s the finale:

 One of my good friends told me that The Original House of Pancake has this Dutch Pancake and how I should try it out. So we did, the family went for a lunch there and I order the baby Dutch pancake. OMG, just the first bite, I almost burst into tears; it’s just like how my grandma used to made for me!! As hungry as I was that time, I couldn’t eat a whole lot because I was so overwhelmed with emotions.  I’ll definitely come back!

 I find comfort on things like that… certain songs that my parents used to sing to me can bring me tears and smile at the same time. For example, Andy Williams – Speak Softly love, have you ever listened to it? It’s beautiful love songs that my parents loves to sing together…  if you haven’t listen here.

 On a side note, one night, Kalia was so fussy and refuse to sleeps. I can’t remember what I was thinking, but I do have my dad old shirt still hanging on the closet, so I just kinda wrapped that around Kalia and just within minutes she drifted to sleeps…. That night I spray a bit of my mom’s perfume on the pillow.. and play Andy William songs till I drifted to sleeps…

My story of full moon….

Thursday and Friday last week we all are privilege to have a view of blue moon. I thought it was cool that blue moon appear at the same time for Neil Armstrong memorial. Just as his family requested, to pay my respect, I did look at the moon and wink.

 My husband took us drive around the city that night to enjoy the beautiful night and the view of the moon. The night was gorgeous. I don’t want to spoil the night by feeling sad. I did cry silently in the car remembering how much my dad loves full moon. Back home in Indonesia, we are blessed with a huge yard, so during full moon my dad and my mom will sit on the yard, with the lawn lights off just enjoying the moonlight and talk. Didn’t I tell you they were hopeless romantic? That memory brought smile and tears at the same time.

 Wanna know something weird, I swear as I keep on looking at the moon, it seems like my dad face came up and smile at me. I feel his warmth, his love and his “message” that all will be okay.

 Maybe I just miss him so much that I started interpreting things around me all associate with him… or maybe I’m losing it…  it didn’t matter, I remember looking at, smile, tell him how much I miss him and I said a prayer for him. That night for the 1st time in over months I sleep well….

Beautiful full moon above Denver. My dad is looking down smiling on us.. 🙂

Sharing thoughts and struggles

Here I am reaching out….

The emptiness of losing Ayah (my dad) cannot be filled. People say it gets better and to just be strong but right now that is the last thing you want to have to do.

I do not sleep anymore either. I wake up from horrible nightmares and then realize I am still in the biggest nightmare of all. The memories keeps on flicker through my mind and then you feel the sharp pain because you do not get any more memories.

I have not slept in months I get maybe 2 hours a night. Dr prescribes some meds but it makes it hard to wake so if I do take them I am sluggish and if I do not then I am sleep deprived. It is all so messed up now. 

I have to stay numb to work otherwise I just start to cry. I hate having fun because life isn’t really the same. Normal doesn’t exist anymore. I loved my dad and the hardest thing was realizing that he’s gone. I feel like the one person, the one man that loves and protect me unconditionally has gone and leave me. That’s why I’m so fearful of everything now…

Now I cannot call him because he won’t pick up the phone. Acha have no dad, she won’t have him to walk her down the aisle…and my Bunda is all alone. Remember watching the funeral from skype and it just sucks that I can’t be there to say my final good bye… that, and all the life changes are painful and a constant reminder to the nightmare. I feel like a walking ghost.  I am sad,  I am angry,   I am lost,

It all just sucks.

Almost everything brings me no joy. ( it is all kind of weird but there are so many things that remind me of him that I just cannot do anymore) what worse is, no one seems to understand.. and life goes on..  I am trying for Tyra and Kalia, but seems like I’m going backward because nothing helps….

Should I stop grieving?

It’s not even a month yet, the wound still feel fresh, and it didn’t take much to takes me back to the painful realization that my dad is gone.

Cooking, looking at the green pan that he loves can bring tears to my eyes… seeing a jar of decaf coffee that he likes so much still sitting on the pantry is enough to break me down…

Days and nights come and go and life goes on, the world seems to be spinning still… although I feel so crushed and dead inside.

Nighttime is the hardest, when people around you sleeping and you just lay there with your own thoughts…  thinking, feeling the hurt and anger again… , wondering why. If everything happens for a reason, this is one of the occasions I wish God would’ve told me why…

God how I miss him so….

Then little voice talk to me, my Tyra told me last night… “Mommy, I don’t want to grow up. “ “but why?” “Well, if I grow up, then you and Daddy will die and I don’t want that, I will miss you so much and I don’t want to be sad all the time like you.”

I have a mixed feeling listening to that. I have been trying to hide my grief from my children. I cry on the way to work, on the way home from work, in the shower.. but somehow she must’ve seen right through me.

Should I stop grieving? Honestly right now I don’t know how or if I can stop…

Then I remember “my dad’s voice” that comes to me in a dream one night….  That tells me to stop crying and to go on with my life, how he’s still around… 

For my daughters sake and my family, I will try…  I will try to grief in different way…

God help me….

My dad June 2012. Fond Du Lac, WI

My dad

My dad (Ayah) pass away unexpended on Tuesday morning June 17th, 2012. He should not have died, he just text my mom few hrs. earlier, talking about the Ramadan preparation, taking my sister to work and how he’ll promise to pick my mom up from the airport on August 5th. Everything went so fast that night it seems blurry to me. I remember getting the news around 10:30pm, family and frantically trying to get hold of anybody back home.. then finally hear the truth after talking to my crying sister. I remember the pain, so unbearable, it actually physically hurt. I remember how my mom keeps on fainted the whole night… he should not have died… there are many plans left….

Here I am writing this memorial for my dad’s memory book and it shouldn’t be that way.  My dad should not have died on Tuesday morning July 17th 2012. He was 65 years old and although he’s been complaining a minor chest pain lately, he’s fine. Then this, he died of a heart attack… leaving us here.

Losing my Father is one of the most difficult things I have gone through.  As I am writing this today, I realize how fortunate I was to have him as my Father.  There are not words to express his influence in my life. Ayah is (was) a great dad and a loving husband. He is also a wonderful grandfather. There are so many wonderful stories I could tell you, but there won’t be enough pages in this books… wonderful memories he left us with… and that memory keep him alive inside me, my mom, my sister and my two little girls, and among all people that loves him just as much. As Tyra often remind me, “grandpa will always be here with us” as he point to her chest.

I learned from him the value of education and hard work. One main lesson he gave me is that how as a woman, I should have skills, I should have a degree, a career, so I don’t depend on men and therefore no man will ever took me for granted and valued me. I am who I am today is because of my parents, because of my dad… he is no saint by any means, he’s human who made mistake and learned from them, but now I know he did the best he could with what he had. In many ways he succeeded better than most.

Family, relative and friends have said to me over and over again, how my dad was a great man, loving, kind and generous. Most of them remember how much he loves his family, how much he loves my mom and us his girls. He passionate about the world and history, he loves to play the piano or organ and sings, he loves to dance, him and my mom took samba, cha cha and salsa lesson together and enjoy it. Recently he enjoys cooking and I’m fortunate that I got to taste that! He is also very passionate about God, about Allah and never stop teaching me small little pray to get me through the day and difficult time…

He always reminds me to trust God with His plan. Remind me to achieve more and yet to stay humble, he assures me that all will be okay at the end. Now here I am, still filled with sadness, grief, and little anger. I need to remember his words, his advises, and most of us trust God that all will be okay.

There’s a saying in Indonesia rough translation is: “how a person live their life will be reflected when he die.” Hundreds have come and pay their respect, many cries with my family, some even wish is should’ve been them instead of him…  my sister told me that till this day we have not spend one cents on his funeral or memorial services. Everything has somehow been provided for us by relatives and family friends. From the cemetery plot, memorial service expenses, food expense…  all has been taking care of.. Everybody loves my dad. My Dad loved us, worked hard for many years for us, was liked by many people, and loved God.

 My dad passing was very quickly – just what he always wanted, no pain, no suffering – expect for the one he left behind. As if he knew his days were numbered, one of his last text messages to my mom was:

“Many people told me I’m unlucky for not having boys to carry my name. On the contrary, I am the luckiest father and man in the world, both our daughters grew up to be respectful daughters who took care of me and spoils me. When I was in Denver Sendie spoils me and her and Pheng never stops show me a good time. Now I’m back home, Acha did the same. Always make sure I have all I need, especially my favorite food. I’m sure both girls turn out well because of you, because of your upbringing. Thank you my love for raising our daughters’ right. I know you will be in their great hands.”

I love you daddy and I miss you so much….  Thank you for everything, for being the greatest dad a daughter can ask for, the greatest grandfather for my two little girls…  for all the wonderful memories you left us with… Until the day we meet again…

Mother knows

I’m still not ready to talk about it more in details of what happen, but I wanted to share my story because I think it is important for mother’s out there to listen to yourself and seeks for comfort and support.                             

When our daughter Kalia was born, we were thrilled to have a beautiful baby girl. All of her test at birth showed normal results, as did the second one at the age of 7 months.

Kalia had always been a very happy and communicative baby. Then, as months passed, she improved all of her skills and developing as normal and baby possibly can. Even at her 1 year checkup, her pediatricians made comments on how she actually ahead. She masters some skills that normally mastered by a 18 month old baby if not older.

But later, at about the age of 18 months, she seemed to have fallen behind her peers as far as one of her skills were concerned. People around me always assure me that she’s fine and she will master that skills later on and baby develop at different rate and how I’m being paranoid. I heard this many – many times. Even from my husband.

Despite all that, I decided to have a special test done. My pediatrician, bless her heart, support me 100%. She told me to wait until Kalia is 2 but she did say, I shouldn’t ignore my instinct. Even though my husband kinda thinks it’s a waste of time at first, he supports me as well.

We did the test last Friday – I guess because it wasn’t really a medical reason and the test was done just based on instinct; it took us almost 1 month to get an appointment with the specialist, but we finally get in. As I hold her during the test, my heart slowly sink, I just knew that she blew it.

Even though I suspect it, both my husband and I were shocked by the results, it is different to suspect something then to actually hear and confirm it. : Fortunately, the doctor was very nice and professional. She immediately informed us of what the next steps should be. She immediately forwards the results to Kalia pediatrician, to different specialist and county for moral helps and supports. She gave us the entire outlet we need on how to move forward.

It doesn’t makes it any easier, I remember sitting there and listening to the test results and look at my husband next to me who have this stern look on his face and then I glance at Kalia and Tyra who were just happily playing with all the toys at the doctor’s office, my eyes just start getting blurry and I just cry right there and then.

I started asking the why questions… what did I do wrong, what did I miss, what I could’ve done different? What is it… WHY????? Don’t play a blaming game, that’s what the doctor told me. Nothing I’ve done or my husband that causes this, she assures us. It happens….  Things happens…

Doctors told me and my husband that we should not under estimate a support group for us. While we will continue to work on Kalia and her future but it is also important for us to get some counseling and support. I thought friends will do.

While we were waiting to get the test done, I took pictures of my kids playing in the waiting room and I post it on facebook. Some of friends start calling and ask if everything is okay. Friday afternoon was a very overwhelming time for us so I don’t return phone calls until Saturday. Even then I was still mixed with anger and guilt.

After hearing of what happens, I would say most friends are very supportive and sympathetic. However there are few that shocked me more. By the way, I’m talking just a handful of people that knows about it. Some friend thought I was being a drama queen and I shouldn’t fret about it too much. Okay …. But then, some friends who was my longtime friends and I consider a very good friends actually start blaming me, her first reaction was “What the H#@#$ did you do to her? Did you clean her *** too hard that causing this?” She’s actually the only person I reach out too – beside my family. And her respond was not something I expected.

After that I just shut down. I ignore phone calls and refuse to talk. Until Tuesday, blogging friends that become facebook friends invite her friends to rant on her page. I figure none of her readers knows me anyway, I will rants….  The response was so overwhelmingly positive though…. I cry and I cry reading it over and over again….  Some even helps me relate to their situations and some just there “holding my hands”. These comes from strangers.. Literally! And yet, so far they have provided me with comfort beyond believe. I deeply touch and humble by that.

Don’t get me wrong, I do have friends here who also hold my hands an cry with me… and I’m will be forever grateful for them. But the situation between my “good” friend and “strangers”  had open my eyes that we do need another outlets than just people around us. The neutral people that will not judge us, that will listen and offers suggestions, supports from neutral perspective.

My pediatrician calls to check on ME. Not Kalia, but ME and my husbands. She’s confidence that Kalia will be in a great hands with doctors and specialist but she also want to make sure we get the helps we need in order to assist kalia. She let me cry with her and she listen. She is too in a way a stranger..  but she’s there for us.

I take comfort that Kalia will get what she needs and my husband and I will get what we need in order to helps Kalia. What happens to us is a gift, it brings everything into perspective that my children truly is a blessing to us and we will be forever grateful for them.

God trusted them in my hands and I will do whatever it takes to make sure I don’t betrayed that trust.  So far.. (so far..) if there’s any good comes from this is a realization that you should count every blessing and not burden yourself with something small. One friend calls me yesterday and thank me. She thank me for share with her my situation. She told me she can’t sleeps at night thinking what would she done if she were in my shoes. She told me I put things in more perspective for her and she thank me for it.

One thing that my pediatrician says that hits me is: “Thank God for your Mother’s instinct, we caught this early.”

So to all mother’s out there… LISTEN.. those voices that tells you when something is off… LISTEN. Who care about other’s opinion, it is you that can feel it in your heart. And use every outlet provided to you for helps.

Thank you,



I Am the New Year

I Am the New Year. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . I am the new year. I am an unspoiled page in your book of time. I am your next chance at the art of living. I am your opportunity to practice what you have learned about life during the last twelve months. All that you sought and didn’t find is hidden in me, waiting for you to search it but with more determination. All the good that you tried for and didn’t achieve is mine to grant when you have fewer conflicting desires. All that you dreamed but didn’t dare to do, all that you hoped but did not will, all the faith that you claimed but did not have—these slumber lightly, waiting to be awakened by the touch of a strong purpose. I am your opportunity to renew your allegiance to Him who said, “Behold, I make all things new.” I have the opportunity Once more to right some wrongs,

“Here we are in a month named after the Roman god Janus, an appropriate personification of the start of the new year. This particular Roman god had two faces so that he could look ahead toward the future and back at the past at the same time. As we get rid of an old year and look forward to a new one, we all try to be a little like Janus. We know through experience what we did wrong and what we did right, and hope to do better this year. Some people make ambitious new year’s resolutions; others just take a deep breath and hope for the best.…”


1. Drink plenty of water.
2. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar.
3. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.
4. Live with the 3 E’s — Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy
5. Make time to pray.
6. Play more games.
7. Read more books than you did in 2011.
8. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day.
9. Sleep for 7 hours.
10. Take a 10-30 minutes walk daily. And while you walk, smile.

11. Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
12. Don’t have negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.
13. Don’t over do. Keep your limits.
14. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
15. Don’t waste your precious energy on gossip.
16. Dream more while you are awake.
17. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
18. Forget issues of the past. Don’t remind your partner with His/her mistakes of the past. That will ruin your present happiness.
19. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Don’t hate others.
20. Make peace with your past so it won’t spoil the present.
21. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
22. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.
23. Smile and laugh more.
24. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree…

25. Call your family often.
26. Each day give something good to others.
27. Forgive everyone for everything.
28. Spend time w/ people over the age of 70 & under the age of 6.
29. Try to make at least three people smile each day.
30. What other people think of you is none of your business.
31. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.

32. Do the right thing!
33. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful.
34. GOD heals everything.
35. However good or bad a situation is, it will change…
36. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
37. The best is yet to come…
38. When you awake in the morning, thank GOD.
39. Your Inner most is always happy. So, be happy.

Happy New Year!!!!

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My holiday story

Hello! I hope you had a wonderful Holiday weekend with your family and friends. We had a great weekend filled with fun, family, friends and festivities.

My Saturday is a bit hectic, I still can’t find one gift for my friend’s daughter, she wanted a blue Angry bird and I went to three different store and they were all out! Gosh, I actually turn to be a pretty angry myself! 🙂 Then I also spend all day preparing for the feast on Sunday, I hosted a Christmas dinner this year (as was I last year as well – but this time it’s at friend’s house) so I spend most of my Saturday evening preparing for it – more story latter on. And a not so good thing, one of my dearest friend’s sister – who also a friend of ours – need to have a emergency tumor removal surgery so we also spend quite a bit of time visiting her at the hospital. But all is good. Nothing says Christmas/Holiday like a busy hectic day! 🙂

Sunday morning Tyra and Kalia literally running down the stairs wanting to open their presents. I love hearing the ooh… and ahh…. Each time Tyra open her presents, not to mention “thank you mommy, thank you daddy, thank you Santa, thank you elf and thank you God.” Hahaha… 🙂  They got a great combinations of toys, clothes and educational items for gift, so I’m pretty happy. Of course, the night before I made sure they choose their old toys to give away to goodwill. My friends notice that Tyra took little after me that she loves to cook and bake so she got her first easy bakes oven and a Hello Kitty cupcake maker! She’s way too excited to see them. Now Kalia, she doesn’t understand gift as much as Tyra, but she got excited over this one gift that my husband choose, it’s her first mini cycles. It’s pink and so cute. Apparently it need to be assembly so husband have to assembly it and she just sat there waiting patiently (most of the time) for daddy to finish putting her little bike together. Then she have a blast going all over the house with it and literally couldn’t care less on the rest of her gift.

The girls have been very blessed with their Aunties and Uncles (either from friends or relatives) with great gift their received. And I can’t thank them enough for loving my children.

As for the holiday feast, we have a progressive holiday feast on Sunday, we all agreed to have an all day eating fiesta, so instead of gathering on one place for dinner and everybody bring a dishes, we split into two places and have two family host each gathering. So we started our Sunday at 11 am with brunch at one friend’s house hosted by the homeowner and one other friends. It was so delish!! We have tons of pastry stuff (one of my friend is Hmong French so she cooks lots of French food) we have Mussels, Salmon, sandwiches and chicken, fruit tarts, etc..  I was so full and they even joked to moved dinner to 8 pm because they were all so full.

Dinner is my turn, I actually host it with one other friend and we do it at her house, however my friend is on an early stage of pregnancy and she really have a rough one. So she can’t cooked anything literally! So I cooked all the heavy stuff and all she need to do is preparing the eatery stuff, the utensil, drinks and salads. I made Roast Turkey, Roast Beef, bakes pasta and sautéed shrimp and mixed veggies, I also bakes a Christmas cake for dessert. I literally do all by myself cooked to feed about 20 – 30 people. I was so worried that we don’t have enough or it didn’t come up right etc… at the end it all went very well and they told me that I actually graduated to be a Nyab Hmong – I think it meant a good Hmong daughter in law. My husband and I was laughing so hard when they all say that. Laughing aside, I take it as a great compliment!

We really had a marvelous time together on Sunday. I love being among them, there’s nothing pretentious on our relationship,  it is mostly laughter that we shared I’m not going to lie, of course we also have our share of argument and tears but at the end we all become such a great friends that we put all aside. I think we truly become a family.

I hope you guys have just a lovely time as I was over the past weekend. Here’s to a great and successful 2012!!

Ps, sorry I haven’t got any time to load pictures yet, but I will and will share them soon.

Happy Mother’s day!!

 First day of winter in the US and Mother’s day in Indonesia. Yup December 22nd is Indonesian Mother’s day. I actually forgot all about it until I came home and Tyra & my husband surprise me with a “Happy Indonesian Mother’s day” wishes – yes, Tyra have to put the Indonesian word in it. 🙂

Then add to my surprise, my Mom & my Dad both sent me a very beautiful mother’s day wishes.

For my dearest daughterI

wish you patience in time of hardship, smiles when your heart is crying. Be silent when others is not. Keep on forgive, keep on loving to even those who hates, keep on giving without expecting anything back. Always be thankful for every blessing and hardship – hardship is the unknown blessing to us.

Even when I’m far away, please remember that my love and my prayers is always be with you.

I thought it was a very sweet wishes and I miss her terribly. I cry when I got it yesterday and miss her even more. I found this picture on the internet and the flower remind me of her.

So for all mother’s out there, Happy Mother’s day!!! We are so special that we can celebrate this day twice! – het at least I am! 🙂

Oh.. before I go, I want to share a picture taken this morning during our little winter storm here in Denver. I think it’s beautiful I wanted to share it with you guys.

1st day of winter 2011 storm


Very blessed

I have been neglected this blog! The old ages excuses, busy with things…. 🙂

Little recap of what’s been happening (if you interested hehehe 🙂 )

We went to WI to see the family for thanksgiving. We had a great time! When we’re there we also drive around in Madison looking for area we’re thinking of moving into. As the times get closer, I get so excited over the idea of moving to WI and actually look forward to.

My husband finishes his student teaching and all of his students did a little farewell party for him. The school district where he teaches is one of the challenging school district. He was in for quite a surprise when he first started. At the beginning of the program he would come home mentally exhausted of his students’ conditions and their environment. He also faces a lot of challenge with their behavior and their parent’s lack of interest on their child! At the end, all the students gave him a well sent off and he told me some event cry and wrote him the most beautifully written thank you note. He just realize that his most difficult students is actually the one that he touches the most and have a hard time saying good bye to. He told me they are the reason why he became a teacher.

Tyra & Kalia…. Oh dear, where do I start? So many activities with so many accomplishments. One of my proudest moments is when Tyra’s awarded with an honor student the “Awesome Antelope” certificate and ‘Big Cheese” few weeks later. She went to Antelope Ridge and”Awesome Antelope” is an award they gave to their students to went and accomplished above and beyond academically. In Tyra case, she excels in Math! The certificate was given to her in a little ceremony with the principal.

Tyra is awsome Antelope


She’s also chosen to be the Big Cheese just few weeks later. Big Cheese is a stuffed mouse animal that the class has as “pet”.  Students that have good behavior and attitude are allowed to take it home for a week and wrote a journal on their activities. Tyra is so excited when she can be the Big Cheese and took him everywhere with her. At the end of the week the class also does a book on why Tyra is chosen to be the Big Cheese. It is so cute to see what her other classmate wrote about her.

December flew by too fast for me. As a tradition we also adopt a family for the holiday, this time we get a family with three boys! I always have a hard time shopping for boys so this particular tradition is a challenging one for me. It is all good though. I also took Tyra to do the shopping and pick up the toys and the clothes and also to pick up the wrapping paper. She kinda got disappointed because we can’t wrap them; it is part of the rule for Inter-Faith organization. But overall she has a great time and understands the meaning behind us adopting the family and I hope she see the important of it. I think she does, I gave her little gift over the weekend and she told me not to spend too much money on her because Santa will give her gift and I should save my money to give to other kids. Awww…..

I can’t recall any holiday that was not special, this is no different. One main special thing for me is how Tyra started to understand the importance of giving and sharing. She’s now know how to separate her old toys and clothes which one to keep for little sissy and which one for goodwill. I’m so proud of her!

This holiday we will also do things a bit differently this time. We will have what we call all day gathering and eating! Will start off with breakfast at one friend’s house; follow with lunch at another friend’s house and then dinner at another friend’s house. I’m in charged with the dinner together with the host. Then we’ll do Secret Santa for the kids, White Elephant for the adult. It will be fun!

And the next day, I got a very special gift from my work which is two tickets to Trans Siberian Orchestra at the Pepsi Center Box seat, with dinner included! I’m excited!!

As hard as some part of the year has been for me, as challenging as it is, yesterday, I look at the house with the chimney on, the stocking is full and presents from relative for the kids, I can say that I’ve been so blessed…. Very blessed indeed.

From my house to yours, Happy holiday!!

Happy Holiday

Sendie-Lou’s musing

Yesterday marked the 10th year of the 9/11 tragedy. I still remember what I was doing that day. I was off that day and after saying good bye to husband for work, I watch Golden Girls – Yes, I’m a fan of the Girls! 🙂  then my husband call told me to switch to the news. At that time it wasn’t sure of what happen yet, we know a plane crash the twin tower but not sure whether it was an accident or what.

Later on that day, the pieces started coming together and it sickens me. It was a very dark days for a lot of people including me. I was grieving for those who lost their life, I was grieving for those who left without a husband, wife, mother, father, son, daughter, brother, sisters… those who lose their family.

I also personally grieve in the name of my religion. A group of small minded people decide to do this in the name of religion, in the name of God. It angers me. I was angry for a long time and I’m still angry. To be honest for a long time I was so prejudice against people from Middle East thinking they have ruins my religion.

I have never ashamed to be a Muslim that even that day, but I was ashamed Islam connections to Middle East. I’m not sure why I took my anger out to Middle Eastern people I just do. Later on that same year when we celebrate EID, at the mosque after the prayer and the sermon that’s the first time I feel like I can let go of the anger.

All Muslim – the true Muslim – regardless of where we came from condemn this act of violence. Including Arabs and the rest of the Middle Easterner. They hate it as much as anybody with the right mind.

It hits me, I was no difference then the terrorist for having that small minded. I am no difference then bigots for being so prejudice towards Middle Easterner. I feel so ashamed. I guess I was so angry and somehow direct my angers towards Middle Easterner. I apologize for having such a small minded.

There were (and still are) so many anger towards Islam and us Muslim, there are so many hate and unanswered questions. I can honestly say I understand the feeling, I understand the anger and even the hate. However as times goes on, I also wish that people will see that 9/11 wasn’t the act of a true Muslim and bring the message of Islam. As times goes on I wish that people will and can see that even Muslim was hurt by this.

Instead of linger with anger and hate; I try to see the message behind this tragedy. It’s about life. How life is short and it can be taken anytime. As corny as this might sound, but really I am trying to live my life as humble as possible, forgive often and be grateful for everything I have.

Life really is too short, let’s makes it the best possible way, so by the time we end this chapter it will be a celebrations of life instead of memorial services.

Love always,


The day of forgiveness…

Most of you know that I’ve been fasting for the past month. Today is the last day of Ramadan, and even though (honestly) there are part o me that relieved the fasting part of it is over, but there are part of me that’s really sad that it is over. Ramadan is a holy month for Muslim, it is the month that all sins are forgiven, the time where we truly can redeem our self and reborn as new person that is sin free.

Tomorrow is EID or Eid Ul-Fitr [Eid in Arabic means festivity, whilst Fitr means purity] so to sum up its mean the festivity of purity. Victory is another word use a lot during the festivity. EID is also the day of forgiveness, the celebrations involved apologizing to others and forgiving those who have hurt you in turn.

This holy month always brings a mixed feeling for me. I have many – many fun loving memories of my childhood especially during this holiday. The house is glowing with decoration and the smells of the traditional holiday food cooking in the kitchen….

My Mom normally already picks the new prettiest clothes for us to wear for the celebration tomorrow and I can’t wait to wear it! That night all of the kids at the neighborhood come out and play and we chant Takbir – glory and praise to Allah, we play fireworks … it’s like a whole block party, even better, it’s the whole nationwide party cause majority of Indonesian is Muslim and we all celebrate EID!

Tonight the EID eve or end of Ramadan is one of the best night for me to have as a child… the whole atmosphere seems to filled with love, happiness, laughter, with Takbir always at the background. Can’t wait for tomorrow, the EID where after prayer we went and visit relatives asking for forgiveness and for us kids, we’ll get money!!! YAY!

To me, EID is a very beautiful holiday, it’s about thanksgiving, forgiveness and charity. No gift exchange involves, no material stuff. All pure humanitarian holiday from the heart. We supposed to ask forgiveness from each other. This is the year where I know I have the best parents ever. They will humbly ask forgiveness from us – their child. It’s always makes me cry when my mom and my dad will hugs me and ask for forgiveness – sincerely.

I mention earlier how I feel a bit down because again I spend holiday away from home… here in this place, where even most of my friend doesn’t share my excitement of this holiday – gosh I’m such a baby! I look at my family’s picture on Facebook on how the holiday is back home and it’s always bring tears….

Beside the normal pray I said, I also pray for peace and little hope maybe I will be given a change to celebrate next holiday with my family and share that special moment with my two girls. Amien.

Eid Mubarak to you all.

The story of Sebastian the crab

Tien posted the recipe for chilli crabs and I’ve been dyin to try it! So I’ve been on a quest (in my limited time) going to one grocery store to the next trying to find Dungeness crab or blue crab. Regular grocery store in CO doesn’t really carry them on normal basis – yeah shocking! The asian market is almost a sure bet to have them but it’s 45 minutes away.

Finally, just a day before my family from WI came over I went to the Asian store and saw those little crabs in a huge bucket and they’re on sale! One drawback – at least for me – it’s all alive! I don’t have the guts to kill them! I ask the store clerk if they can maybe put them to “sleep” for me cause I’m too scared. After the guy finish laughing he told me they don’t have any steamer or boiling water to do so and that by the time I get home they should all be dead. Hmm.. reassuring.

But my willingness to cook it and serve it to my hubby and the family overcome my fear and I bought 4 huge one. Well, at least I thought it will overcome my fear, it didn’t. Those suckers are still alive by the time I get home! So I sat down and research the internet on how to put them to “sleep” in the most humane way. Finally a friend told me that if I put them in the freezer for just 30 seconds it should kinda numb them so that when we “prepare” them they won’t feel a thing. Okay.. that sound humane – right?

So, finally I get myself mentally ready to do this. I made all the preparation and then I put them all on the kitchen table. At the same time my Tyra came down the stairs and squeals in delight.. “Mommy you got me a pet!!!! Thank you Mommy Thank you!!! Ok, this is Sebastian the crab, this is Ouya, this is ……” Her voice just slowly disappear from my head…  Now, how do I tell them that they are not pets and that they’re actually dinner for tomorrow?

Last space shuttle is headed home…

I wasn’t paid too much attention to the launch of the Atlantis in 2006. I just had my first baby, we are in the process of moving from Colorado Springs to Denver. I remember the good news after the fear of the unknown. It was a happy ending. At that time, I promise that I will share my excitement and the memory with Tyra and my  future children when another moment comes.

Yesterday on the news, this headline catches my attention, The last space shuttle is headed home. I wasn’t paid much attention thinking “oh, Atlantis coming home.” Then people stared talking how this will be the last Nasa space shuttle program, that it was over and etc… I’m not sure how to react. It was spoken briefly and then we all move on with our daily activity. Not until I read Heidi’s post about this, It immediately took me back to my childhood memory and that when it hits me the promise I made to Tyra and to myself how I will continue the traditions especially now that we’re living here in America.

I have vivid memories of my childhood in Indonesia when my parents took me and my cousins to watch comet Haley goes through earth. I was very little that day and wasn’t really sure how to react. Then my dad talk to me about the comet, stars, the space and the astronauts. I was so fascinated by it.

Around the same time, (I can’t remember if it was earlier or later) I remember all of my family gather that night (it was night time in Indonesia) I was trying to fight sleeps because all of the family just so excited to witness history being made. We all glued to the TV watching the launch of Challenger. Sadly our cheers soon turn to tears when we heard it had exploded. I remember waking up to my cousins brother yelling that the Challenger had exploded, and I remember my Mom cry.

Then 2003 – I already live here in US with my husband and with friends we anxiously watch the Columbia launch. I still remember all the Astronauts with a huge smile on their faces waving goodbye. Once again, our hearts broke. The Columbia and her crew were lost during re-entry over Texas on February 1, 2003, and the we all mourned again…

Now, I feel like we all mourned again, people will never guess or know much about my fascination with the space. And maybe my fascination is mostly just based on childhood memory with my dad – my hero – and my family. Either way, it just hits me that this is something that I won’t be able to lok forward to share with Tyra. You know the saying “you don’t know what you got till it’s gone.” It’s kinda like that. Something you took for granted now that it end, it just hits you.

I can only wish that it’s temporary and that one day I will be able to re-create the memory with my children. In the meantime, I will tell Tyra and Kalia  a story, a great story of the space and hope I can do a great job fascinate them they way my dad does.

Just as the NASA Flight director Kwatsi Alibaruho said, “I try to look at that as an adventure, rather than focusing too much on the memories,”

Worse hairday ever!

That coukd've been me!

Having my niece stay with us this summer kinda get me going about changing my style. Who’s better than a teenager to teach you more about style? So secretly, I’ve been trying to change my hairstyle. Yes secretly. I’m not one who spends too much time on appearance so even the idea of me trying will get the biggest laugh out of my husband. Thank God I’m just naturally beautiful.. ahem! NOT! 🙂

 After 30 minutes of trying different style, using some gels, spray I can find in my bathroom closet,  I give up. I’m just not that person who can do such thing. I hardly use my hair dryer! Who am I kidding. So.. I went downstairs to find my living room in chaos and my 5 yrs old looking at me funny “what’s up with your hair Mommy?” umm…  Then Pharmacy call I need to pick up my prescription. Off I went with my 5 year old cause she’s begging to come with me.

I feel like I’m having such a bad hairday (well duh!) and it change my mood to the worse! At the pharmacy’s, my Tyra somehow in a whinny mood that day… “can I do this, can I do that, can I have this… ?” I already got a headache from all the foam and hairspray – which probably expires cause it’s just sitting my closet for years! –  and now this. I just want to pick up my meds and go home.

 At the checkout point the cashier out of the blue just said to me “Wow you look like Monica Lewinsky! Are you guys related?” Excuse me??? I look 100% Asian and no, I don’t think I look like Ms. BJ at ALL! But how can I be rude to her, here’s a cute little blonde – that should be the cue – look at me with amazement. I just shortly said “No, we’re not related.” She must’ve sense me being upset and she try to clear it by saying “oh.. sorry, I just think you look pretty.” I pay the meds and mumble thank you and left.

 I grab my child by the hand refuse to buy her another pillow pets and put her in the car…  and here’s Tyra. “Why are you upset Mommy? The lady is right, I think you’re pretty.” Oh…. My heart just melt… Thank you Tyra! “But mommy, I do think you need to lose weight.” OY! And you want to know why I’m upset??

I look NOTHING like her

Fun to be ONE

We celebrate (for the 2nd time) Kalia’s 1st birthday last Saturday at our house. Friends and family came to celebrate our baby turning one. It was an afternoon filled with fun and laughter.

Birthday girl!

Overall the party was a success. Originaly I wanted to do Disney UP theme, I get the inspiration from The Tomkat studios – such a fun blog! So, I made the cake just like in the blog and I took the freebie for the menu & bottle label from KevinandAmanda. Another fun blog I follow for years to get inspiration. I’m not creative by all mean, but it’s fun to imagine to be one! 🙂

However, I got sick just a week before the party and it kinda messed up the whole planning. I couldn’t do a lot of things I originaly planned. I didn’t even get to shop until Wednesday before the party! Crazy! But all is well, I just change the theme from UP to Balloon. 🙂

The cake!

The dessert & appetizer table are combined into one and the table just surrounded with balloon. I have lollipos (looks like balloon) and I also made rice chrispy treat using pink marshmellow and shape them like balloon- this was a hits, they went flying out from the plate faster than a lose ballon! As for the appertizer I made eggroll, spinach dip & beef in the blanket. There’s also punch for drinks.

Desert & appertizer

I keep the dinner menu in similar tone – food with a stick 🙂 so the dinner is hot dogs kabab, shish kabab & chicken satay. Oh.. I also have salad and lo mein, and don’t forget rice!! 🙂 My friend was so nice that she actually made Kophia (Hmong chicken rice noodle soup) at my house when she arrive. Too bad, in all the fun I actually forgot to take pictures for the food! But it was so yummy and all went in a flash!

Just 3 days to pull this party and I was working too. I thought I coulnd’t pulled it off but I did, not by myself. Hubby help, friends came the day before to do all the balloons, my sister in law helps me preparing all the main entree (as sticking them in the stick.. :)) and she made the salad too! Also my dear friends, oh.. my dear friend, one friend came 2 hrs before the party, the house was in such chaos still! And she came with her family, grab the sponge and start doing dishes, moping the floor & even vacuum! What a friend!

The party went on with Games, Face painting and special goodie bags. It’s trully a fun evening. I can’t wait to plan another one for Tyra’s birthday this October! I can’t thank everyone enough, for the support, the love.. for everything!!! Kalia can feel it too, she’s beaming with happiness. That’s the main thing, this party is for her, not for me and not about me. Happy Birthday Kalia!!

Face Painting


Goodie Bags

Kalia having fun opening gifts

Happy Birthday Jakarta

(From top, left to right): Jakarta Old Town, Hotel Indonesia Roundabout, Jakarta Skyline, Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, Taman Mini Indonesia Indah, Monumen Nasional, Merdeka Palace, Istiqlal Mosque

Jakarta city that never sleeps, a place where I was born and raised. Jakarta is the capital of Indonesia, my home country. Roughly 9,580,000 people live in Jakarta, including me at one point! All 10 million share a living area of roughly 681 SQ Kilometer (255 sq mi). This is according to Indonesia 2010 census bureau.

A city so unique with cultural and economical diversity.

Indonesia National Monument

 Jakarta, where you will find many – many  

exquisite, extravagant, top of the line malls and buildings and houses… and slums. My pride and my heart break.


One of the mall in Jakarta

I all those “uniqueness”, Jakarta will always hold a special place in my heart and today, Jakarta celebrates its 484 yrs birthday!

I assume the celebration PRJ – Pekan Raya Jakarta (Jakarta weekend festival) will be held. Last time I went to PRJ was 112 years go, and it was also during my husband 1st visit to Indonesia and I took him there.

Happy birthday Jakarta! Many wishes for you, and I hope to visit you again soon.

For more info, please visit this site

Patung Selamat Datang - the Welcome Monument


Put on a happy face

“Annie” at the age of 5 yrs old already taught us to put on a happy face regardless of what inside.

That’s what I’ve been doing. I hate to be blogging about my problems and sorrow and down stuff, but this is part of me being honest to myself and to heal.

In collage, I was known as being very bubbly and easy going. I like the idea of I always be the one to go to when my friends are sad or need shoulder to cry on or someone they can trust. I guess since that time I tried to keep the same image as the go to person. I forgot I also have feelings and I also human that are not immune to sadness and hardship.

 I recently find myself in places where I’m the one who need helps and I’m the one who is sad and not happy. Yet, I keep it all inside and don’t share it with anybody. I’m afraid they will change their image about me. Girl that is always happy.

 I know I’m sad and unhappy and wanted to scream and ask for help but unable to. This stupid pride keeps on blocking the way! I turned into long hours or television watching any stupid shows I can find just to dull the pain, to block it out. I was hoping if I ignore it long enough it will eventually go away.

 Finally, I can’t just keep on ignoring it. There are these voices inside of me that keep on screaming at me calling me a loser, a coward for not speaking out. Until friends calls me out on it. Until that time I never realized how important it is to really sit with whatever it is you are feeling, whether it’s depression, anxiety, frustration, anger and self-doubt when they show up.

You can try to ignore it and hide from it but eventually, you’re going to have to face the tough stuff.

So where did it go wrong? The happy girl I once am, I have a good life, two beautiful girls, a husband, a great job and I’m very blessed with it.. where did it go wrong? Am I just that ungrateful?

 I know that part of it is just being overwhelmed with a lot life changing event that happening to me recently. I guess I just don’t deal with it as good as I should. I guess I’m just not strong enough.

There are still many questions linger, but now I know to face the demon and to talk it out. I won’t let this beat me. I will find and be that happy girl again.

And I thank my friends (again) for helping me reach that realization that I can’t do it alone and I don’t have to. The role has reverse and they will happily hold my hands during this tough and confusing time.

Today is best friend day, I quote from email a friend sent me, ‘Friends are angels who lift us to our feet when our wings have trouble remembering how to fly.’ There is no beginning or end.. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift

Also in honor of best friend day, I read a quote by Katybeth that I truly love:

 “As we grow older, more friends become best friends in different ways. There is a childhood best friend that knew you back in the days; the best friend that you raised your children with over the years; the best friend you may only talk to twice a year, but it only takes you a few moments to catch up; perhaps the best friend you gossip with at the office; or, perhaps, the sister or brother that was once a thorn in your side but grew up to be your best friend. While our list of best friends may have grown to include more people, what makes a friendship “best” is sharing our most important secrets, hopes, dreams, aspirations, and disappointments with each other throughout the day or over the years.”

To you all my blogging friend, you had helped me getting through this tough time too through your post and your comment. Thank You!


Weekend recap and happy Monday!!

My life here in Denver maybe a lot of things, but boring isn’t one of them. My weekend back to normal, what I mean by normal is full of birthday’s invitations and activities.

Good thing I (thought) got a step ahead of my chores and did my laundry Friday night, although it seems like a moot point because by Saturday it’s already piling up again… and don’t get me started on house cleaning… I swear to you, I think my house is cursed by never ending laundry and dishes and toys that miraculously always on the floor – no matter how good I (try to) hide them! That’s another story…

After Tyra’s weekend activities such as bible studies etc. We headed for Downtown to see the chalk painting shows. My husband is a fan and always wants to see them every year. Last weekend the weather was very nice, so it’s not too terribly hot and we got good parking too!

After a stroll in downtown, we stop by to visit the river and get out feet dip into cool river water. Kalia loving it! She can’t let go of the water melon and hold on tight while enjoying the river. So cute! I’ll post picture on different post. Big sister Tyra as always love the water and having a hard time leaving. But the sun almost set and we have another party to go to.

Hawaiian party theme ended our Saturday night bash. It was fun. Kalia have cool aid for the first time and just loving it! She got her little beach outfit all wet and sticky from all the watermelon and cool-aid I have to give her a bath at my friend’s house! We have pho for dinner. My friends made one of the best pho I have eaten. I ate a huge bowl!

Sunday is another fun/busy day. Tyra have been whining to see her best friend, little did I know her friend did the same. Her mom calls me and set up the time to meet. We went to the park nearby our house and let the kids play and play and play. They were so cute though, when they see each other they just ran and give each other a hug… oh.. melt your heart just a beauty and pure friendship. I wish they will keep this friendship even after we moved.

Then.. another birthday party! This time is a pirate birthday theme. With all those activity and emails and invitation and planning our own party for Kalia in 2 weeks, I completely missed out on the pirate theme so we are the only one who didn’t dressed up as pirate! We still have fun though… 🙂

And.. another thing I missed… we supposed to attend our first mandatory Dragon Boat practice (husband will be competing this year) and I miss reading the time. I thought it was at 4 pm turn out it was at 1pm, the same time with the pirate party. Oh well..

We got home around 5 pm ish.. and worn out from the weekend. Tyra help me make dinner we made egg lo mein and both her and Kalia eat it up! Then get ready for Another Food Network Star – my favorite shows.. 🙂  and ready for bedtime and welcoming Monday…

I’m still holding out hopes hopefully the government will realized that Two days to see people, have fun, run errands and rest is not possible and somehow  will institute a third weekend day. In the meantime… happy Monday y’all!!

Fear not a friend is here

Last couple weeks I’ve been stressed out without even realizing it. If you read my post last week you’ll see how I was off-balance.
A lot of things just happened so quick that I didn’t get a chance to catch my breath, it’s like boom.. boom..boom! We got back from Indonesia, I still very sad missing my family then we decide this is the right time to move, so we need to get the house ready, then my brother pass away, then back to the house.. then other things I can’t really talk about…. It’s a mess!
I was very negative with my friends – without me realizing it – and very short and don’t have any patience. I withdrawal from a lot of friends activity and just stay home trying to get things done, somehow it didn’t. It’s like a depression that keep on sinking and drawn me with it.
I didn’t realize how bad it was until few of my friends call me and set me straight. They notice how I’ve been acting differently and it’s not a good different. Of course I didn’t admit it, but it’s not like I’m lying, I just wasn’t aware that I need help. I didn’t aware how stressed I was until I lay out the whole situation.
Then I broke down… my friend at beginning was mad at me she told me flat out this is what she said “We are friends aren’t we? Why won’t you pick up the phone or email us and say ‘ladies I need help.’ We’ll come to help you in quickness. Will you let us help?” I literally just cry on the phone with her – not sure if she knows that or not.
I finally see that I do need help and that I am overwhelmed with changes that are happening and will happen in my life. I over estimate my own strength. Once I see it, it’s like a huge weight been lifted. I know I’m strong and I have a good foundation at home, but sometimes we need more and that’s the gap my friends – good friends – filled for me.
I may not have any family here, but really fear not, I have plenty of great friends around me. That’s what friends are for…
For you ladies.. you know who you are. Thank you.. thank you!!

It is summer when…

1. I need to bring light jacket to work cause they blast the AC to match the temperature of the north pole!
2. Grocery store looking prettier with all those summer flowers they sell in front of the store.
3. Water melons are on sale!
4. Malls are full with teenagers hangin out.
5. Flip flops are on sale!
6. The smells of BBQ are in the air – especially during weekend.
7. Community pools are open and busy!
8. The cold are out and allergy seasons are in.
9. Corns are on sale!
10. I have excuses to relax at the spa getting manicure done on weekly basis.

Happy Summer y’all!!!!

My travel diary: Indonesia – Pictures from Indonesia

I hope there are better words for me to describe my going home-vacation experience. I don’t know if I can ever put in the right words to explain how I feel being home, being among family. Seeing my dad & my sisters and others family member that I haven’t seen in a long time.

I can’t. There too many memories all with mixed feelings – all good – but mostly melancholy cause I miss them so much.

I hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I enjoy sharing them with you all.

As we’re approaching to land in Jakarta – finally I’m home!


This is the face that my baby gave me at the airport. I think she’s mad cause I “leave” her for such a long time.


The housing complex right by my parents house.My parents have a swimming pool so we swam almost everyday.


Swimming almost everyday

My parents have a papaya tree and (almost) every morning, Tyra would ask the gardener to pick her one. She didn’t like papaya that much, she just love watching him climb the tree!

Tyra & her papaya.With some of my beloved family.


With some of my beloved family.


The view from my parent’s mountain house.


My husband having fun at the fish pond.


My bedroom in Jakarta - how I miss it


Before flying to Medan


When Tyra was born, my parents got her a horse named Chloe. It’s only natural she loves horses and good at riding it.


Kota Tua (Old City) Jakarta

Our visit is also coinciding with Kartini Day. Kartini is woman hero for Indonesia. We went to local kindergarten and see kids dress up in variety of Indonesia local traditional outfit. I used to participate every year!


Swimming with grandpa - my 2 spoils brats!


My parents throw a 1st birthday bash for Kalia at a restaurant. We have over 200 people in attendance it was crazy. They have MC and everything. Love my parents to death!


Went on a safari


Tyra posing with picture of me when I was her age.


At the airport before we leaves. Good Bye – see you all soon!!!

 I hope you all enjoy the picture!! I hope I can share a bit of my love of Indonesia and my family.

Cheers, Sendie


So hard to say goodbye

I left home 10 years ago, I guess a part of me never really leaves. Everytime I left Jakarta, it took a piece of me. It takes a lot for me not to cry (too hard) at the airport cause that will make it much harder. Everybody cries at the airport as we say goodbye…. the whole time we’re driving to the airport, I try to look at outside as much as possible. Try to remember it one last time before I leaves.
I was born and raised there and it’s my home. It’s a city that never sleeps, city of 19 million people (roughly) the city that the traffic was so bad that you feel like you live on the road.. but it my city. It’s my home. I never thought of leaving Jakarta for so long or wondered if I’ll ever lived there again.  Regardless of all the bad, I am just so addicted to Jakarta, I miss the dynamic of life there, I miss the routine. Most of all, I miss my family, my whole family.
Of all the trips I took to Jakarta, I felt this particular one was one of the most emotional one to me. This time I have my own little family. My two little girls. How I’m so glad I can share my love and part of me with them. I can see they enjoy this trip as much as me maybe more with all people spoils them rotten! Tyra is old enough to experience the life there more and I’m so happy I can share part of my childhood with her. We took her to places that have momories for us, taste the food we love and more. As for Kalia, even though she still little, I’m sure she can sense all the love around her. She’s the baby that light up the house! Her laughter and giggle truly bring miracle and blessing for my family.
On a different note, one of my cousin brother is dying of cancer and even though he lives in different city, we manage to fly and see him. He still able to recognize me and told me he will fight till the end and never give up. I’m grateful I got a change to see him. His situation has worsen from what I heard. I pray for whatever best for him. God knows best and I leave the decision is God’s hand. I pray for his strenght, him and his family. My uncle also pass away while we’re there. We attend his funeral. I remember him and his smile when he was at my wedding, I remember his joke and now he’s gone. May he rest in peace.
All that good and the bad makes it so much harder to leave. I have a great job here in Denver and beautiful home, but it feel empty without family (other than my immediate) to share it with. Back home our family is such a close knit that we share everything together the good and the bad… I miss that. Even I am surrounded by a lot of great friends here but it’s different.
And also..
I wondered if I will see my parents again, will I see my family again, will all of them still be healthy enough the next time I visit?  Or even just a simple question as “when can I see them again?” I can only set a plan, but only God  decide.
I can’t ever seemed to find the answers, I don’t have control over my future, none of us do. I am just very grateful to Allah, that I have more than a girl can ask for, I have tastes the best of both world, having a great childhood and a great family and a life in America. It seem very selfish of me to ask for more, I know that no matter how hard everything may looked or sounded… there’s a reason for everything and  there’s always something about your life that you can be grateful of.
 In the meantime, I’m grateful that I have the best of both world..I know I’ll always have a place to call home, other than Denver, a place I will always look forward to come home to.
Nothing goodcomes without any sacrifice… this is my sacrifice.

Happy 2012

I didn’t get a change to do my (intended) last post of 2011. My youngest one got a nasty case of ear infection just that Saturday and it’s pretty much our New Year, holding a hot fever and screaming baby. I hope that doesn’t really illustrate how our 2012 will be. She’s all better just few hours after the clock strike to 2 am new years day and we finally drifted to sleep around 3 am ish.

What I was going to say was:

2011 has come to a close. This year has seen many ups and downs. We’ve been through challenges, but we were able to get through them with the guidance of God. I wanted to say that I am very blessed, grateful and appreciative to have you in my life. Your comment, your post without you realized has helped me tremendously, I have felt your prayers and your support. I also have a great privilege on becoming a friends with some of you through facebook and you guys have enrich my life and I THANK YOU for it.

This journey  has been awesome and I am so looking forward to see what else is in store. Thank you so much for allowing me to be me and for letting me grow spiritually and mentally. I feel that I have grown a lot over this past year.

 I am super excited about 2012!!! I am going to continue to love and continue to get closer to God. This is my time to focus more on Him and of course my family and to stay on the path He has set for me. My faith will continue to guide me and I will forever Thank God for everything, including for the struggles, the storms, the messes and the tests for they make you stronger in faith and with Him.

Love and Blessing….