Monthly Archives: December 2011

we have made a bunch of new friends recently. we met olly, adina and their son jonah outside a warung near our house a couple of days ago, and through them our circle of friends have expanded rapidly. olly and adina live just up the road and are here for a year. they are into raw food and are interested in building an off-the-grid house. sound familiar?

today we went with them to the east coast of bali to a place known only as “white sand beach”. it reminded me of the beaches around sayulita with its white sands and turquoise waters. we spent way too much time in the sun, but we couldn’t help ourselves! nayou’s time in the pool has paid off handsomely – he was swimming really far out with all of us adults, and loved riding up and down on the bigger waves. that blue spot on the left hand side is nayou!

we all had a really awesome time. it was good to get out of ubud, good to hang out with cool new peeps, and good to get some beach time. nayou fell asleep in the car on the way home, which speaks volumes about how much fun he had! and us parents were having too much fun to take any nice photos 🙂

all in all, an awesome day. and to cap it off we got another amazing sunset at our house.

to our friends and family all around the world, we hope you had or are having a merry christmas with your loved ones! we had a great day today, starting off with checking out what santa brought. then wayan and kadek came over with their parents and we spent the better part of the day hanging out by the pool. we managed to catch up with family over skype as well, which was super cool. obviously we wish we could be with our parents and siblings in person but celebrating in bali ain’t so bad either!

its been almost two weeks since we began our stint in bali. so much has happened that i am no longer even kidding myself about writing it all. hana suggested i just do a photo dump, so here are some snaps. i’ll fill in the blanks as best as i can 🙂

this is the house that we stayed in for the first ten days. brenda found a post on facebook by a guy called shakar who was travelling over december. he was looking for someone to sublet his place and it looked nice so we jumped on it. the house is located on the north end of ubud, behind a family compound. yes, compound. bali is very much a collectivist (as opposed to individualist) culture, and the nuclear family unit is comprised of at least three generations. the compound will usually include the main house, a guest house and a temple. our house was located behind one of these compounds. living close to an indonesian family was a really good way to start our bali experience as we got a taste of real balinese life!

you are much much closer to nature here, especially the food you eat. there are the ubiquitous rice paddies, but also coconut trees, mango trees, rambutan trees (our new favourite), pineapples, chickens etc. there is also the usual assortment of lizards, moths, mosquitoes, frogs, spiders and other random creepy crawlies who probably don’t even have names.

oh yeah, that’s a snail.

nayou started hunting for eggs in the yard the moment we arrived. he’s been obsessed with chickens laying eggs. unfortunately the hens in ubud are skinny and scrawny and i don’t think they lay. so i started hiding store-bought eggs in the yard for him to find.

ibu kadek, the lady who lives in the compound in front of our house, has two sons – wayan and kadek. the balinese have this naming system where your name is automatically assigned based on your birth order. the first born is wayan, the second is kadek etc etc. there are some variations like kadek can also be made (mah-day), but it gets confusing quickly. everyone ends up getting nicknames, but they introduce themselves with their proper hindu names.

anyway, nayou, wayan and kadek all became fast friends very quickly. wayan is 12 and kadek is 6. perfect for nayou who loves older kids. they are both super sweet with him and its great to see him making good friends despite not speaking the same language. except for the language of play i suppose. i have some gorgeous video of them all running around together which i will upload soon. when we left the house for our new one, kadek was tearing up… so sad. luckily our new house is just a five minute scooter ride away and we are still seeing them regularly!

i’m not sure what is up, but they love to throw signs for photos. peesu!

here is ibu kadek (the mom), her sons wayan and kadek with brenda and nayou.

the porch was everyone’s favourite place to hang out.

ibu kadek lent us some traditional indonesian attire for a ceremony we were invited to. one thing about bali – there are a lot of ceremonies.

the ceremonies are just one manifestation of the very very strong hindu faith in bali. every morning you see people putting our offerings in their homes, storefronts etc. one of our taxi drivers was telling me that about 40% of their time and income is devoted to rituals involving hinduism!

it is the rainy season here, but it never rains for long. usually we get an hour or two of pouring rain a every other day. it can get pretty crazy though!

my friend joe from dr. d also made his way to bali and we got a chance to hang out.

ubud is a very cool town. its compact, but dense. lots of shops, warungs (cafes), and lots of raw/organic places. plus yoga as well. i’ve already found a teacher that is challenging and inspiring me, and the energy of this place is just conducive to contemplation, meditation and hippy things lie that.

this is our favourite raw cafe, soma.

by far the best way to get around town is on a scooter. there is a weird order to the chaos of the streets in ubud and now that i’m used to it, it just feels normal driving around on busy roads with no traffic lights or signs or anything. but don’t worry, we’re all wearing helmets!

oh yeah, they have a monkey forest in the middle of ubud. the monkeys are very cheeky. nayou got a fright when one of them squeezed his leg trying to steal some coconut husk out of his hand!

on the 20th we moved into our new house. its also on the north end of ubud, and its our little slice of heaven. we are subletting the place for three weeks from a girl called oksana, who we know from a mutual friend in new zealand (thanks jeanne!). oksana is a yoga teacher and also a conscious eater and a generally all round cool chick. we’ve only been speaking via email but we can’t wait to meet her in person!

the house is surrounded by three sides by huge rice paddies and comes with a pool, huge master bedroom, open plan living room etc etc. basically its awesome, and i’m still in shock that we are living here. i wake up in the morning and give thanks for being so unbelieveably lucky.

our bedroom:

this is the second bedroom upstairs:

and the view from the upstairs porch:

we have just settled into a bit of a routine in our new place. it feels great and now that we have parked ourselves here until mid-january i am really starting to decompress. i will try to do a video update soon. stay tuned!




the movers are going to be here in about and hour and after we return the keys to the real estate agent we will be errand free! its been a very easy move for us and i like to think that this bodes well for the rest of our trip.

i am so excited to be going to bali! its is definitely time to just relax. although it always takes a while to switch from busy bee mode into “its ok to not be doing anything right now” mode. nayou has been a superstar while we run around getting things done. aunty yanny and aunty r’adele have been awesome too!

potts point was a fun place to live and we’ll definitely miss it. lots of cool people live here 🙂

the wifi at our house in bali isn’t working, so this might be the last post in a while. i’ll write more from bali!

its always a whirlwind in the final days before a big move, and this one is no exception. so busy, in fact, that i have neglected to post about a very exciting event that almost got lost in the mix – nayou turned 4 on friday! i can’t believe that its already been four years, but looking at him now he is most definitely a boy, not a toddler or a baby. he says so many funny things and has so many crazy ideas, its a joy to converse with this kid.

we had a low key day on the 2nd, opening presents, going to gymbaroo and then spending the rest of the day hanging out. as requested, we got him a remote control car for his birthday. a blue police car at that! its been quite a hit and it will be one of the few toys we’ll be schlepping to bali. we had a combined farewell/birthday celebration on the 3rd. we chose the only sunny day in the last week which was lucky! it was good to hang out with everyone one last time.

grandma sent him a very fetching hat, which we pretend is a constable hat. it makes it much easier to give out speeding tickets!

oh, and we got some cool new shark flip flops for bali as well! this one’s for hana 🙂 rrraaaa!

we’re almost done with all of our packing – just the bedroom and bathroom left to go! the house is looking pretty empty right about now. which is a bit sad, but not really when i think about where we’re going to be in just a couple of days!


one of the bonuses of delaying our departure was that i got to go to the happy feet 2 premiere tonight. originally they said the event was for crew only, but i asked for two tickets and got them! this time my hot date was nayou and not brenda – mainly because brenda’s still healing her knee, but also because there aren’t that many chances to take your kid to a movie premiere. we walked the not-so-red carpet amidst a flurry of fake snow.

robin williams and george miller were there to hype the crowd up, but they showed up 45 mins late, which is an eternity for kids to wait.

but the movie did start eventually and i must say i was pleasantly surprised. given all the problems that it took to get this film on screens, the end result is gorgeous, and the story is passable. its not going to redefine cinema as we know it but perhaps it will keep some kids entertained this year… for the most part nayou liked it, although some of the story scenes were a bit over his head. he did like all the chases and the parts with the rescue boat though!

41% on rotten tomatoes and counting! which is nowhere near as bad as some of the films i’ve worked on.

p.s. a birthday update is coming soon!