Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Comfort Food

Yesterday afternoon, a well-intentioned family member brought over some "jook" or congee for me to eat, knowing that it was one of my favourite cravings from time to time. I hate to say, but it was just not the best congee that I had ever eaten--way too watery and just nothing in it that I liked. So, today I set out to make the most satisfying, congee that I could with all my favourite garnishes. I debated over adding meat to the pot, but decided against it, since my plan was to make my congee egg-heavy with salted duck eggs and century eggs. I was also going to buy some crispy barbequed duck to eat with it on the side, but wouldn't you know it, the closest bbq meat store in my neighbourhood just happened to be closed today. So, I got full this afternoon on plain, but delicious basic white congee to which I added chopped scallions, slivers of peeled ginger, chinese doughnut (yiao tiew)--something I haven't had in a long,long time, century eggs, salted duck eggs, sesame oil, and soy sauce. Now, I don't know if I'll be able to ride to work on such a full stomach....

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Back from Vacation

what summer is all about

We're back from vacation, and happy to be in our own beds. We can't believe August is amost over, but much has happened since posting a month ago. First, we had an exciting family visit with the twins, A and Z--new cousins to D and R--our first meeting-- and boy, are they adorable! The twins turned four months while they were here in Vancouver, and they've grown so much in the two weeks that they were here! We're so happy and grateful that my brother's family was able to make the long trip back home for this special visit.

new additions to the family

Then, as soon as my brother's family left for HK, it was speed packing for camping in Tofino and Saltspring. All our camping gear and necessities just went flying into bins labeled kitchen, bed and bath, food, clothing, and kids' activities. I let the hubby take care of the rest of the gear, like shelter, lights, cooler, stove, first aid, and the vehicle. I always feel we take too much stuff, but we manage to use most of it on our trips, and we're always able to jam everything into the back of our van. Oh, and I couldn't forget my knitting project for the road-- my Slipped-Stitch Rib Sock that I started back in May of 2007. I'm happy to report that although I did not complete the sock on the trip, I did get a chance to work on it a lot, especially on Saltspring Island where I had free time to work on it in the early mornings and while the boys were out playing by the lake during the day--D in the water with the other kids and R on the tire swing. All I have left to complete is half the foot and the toe shaping for one sock, and then the closing up of the toes for both socks!

finally, time to myself on MacKenzie Beach

We went on vacation as a group of three families this year, and although challenging at times with not all of the kids getting along, it was fun catching up with old friends, making new ones, and working together as one big group to make the trip a smooth, relaxing, and memorable one. Below are some highlights of our trip from Tofino's MacKenzie Beach to Saltspring Island and then up to Whistler back on the mainland:

waiting for s'mores around the campfire

D posing on the beach

building sand castles

the dramatic rescue of a husband without a lifejacket, whose kayak flipped

the beautiful view from the cottage

hanging out at the Saltspring Saturday Market

hamming it up at Whistler while watching the mountain bikers

We can't wait to do this all over again next year!!!