Monday, December 17, 2012

End of the year: TUSAL - IHSW - Themealicious

proudly presented my TUSAL for 2012, this is my ORTs for about 6 months, since I joined TUSALin June:

look how empty my jar was in June in my first TUSAL post

Theme of this month is: Delightful December
The holidays are a time for least, that's the theory! No stress on whatever you want and enjoy!

I was planning to stitch the Winter Clock but I decided to stop after 2 days because I didn't enjoy it. The fabric is 11ct, the hole is big and the fabric is rough, the thread is China thread and it is not the shiny one (which has better quality) but dove, it is not interesting at all and easily frayed on rough fabric. Horrible :( I dont feel like changing the fabric and the thread ( do not want to waste them), I still want to make it because Ilike the design but I think this one will stay in my WIP stash for quite sometime.

So... just on the day of IHSW I decided to sew A Good Marriage from Lizzie and Kate. I am planning to give it to my husband's oldest niece who just got married last month. I dyed the fabric by myself using Folgers Columbian Coffee that Serkan dislike and wont brew and he said I am welcomed to use it as a dye as much as I want :) I enjoyed stitching a couple of rows and couldn't stop, and then started to get bored... this is cute but not so much challenge on it. I decided to take it easy, besides I have got a lot of things to do before going to Turkey this weekend: gatherings, souvenirs and gifts shopping, attending Dilara's school winter production before end of term holiday, and packing! No worries I would still have 2 weeks in Turkey to finish it before I handed it to her mum (serkan's niece lives in Istanbul and we are not sure if we could meet up at the airport, we are going to spend the holiday in Konya, my husband's hometown). 

Thank you to Sharon Daffycat, Heather and Joysze for TUSAL, Themealicious and IHSW. Your events keep me going stitching and blogging.

See you all next year :) Have a great stitchy holiday everybody :)
***** many thanks, terima kasih, sağol, شُكْرًا

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Au Revoir, Mbak Ina!

I've known her for years, we attended the same university back in Indonesia, the same faculty but different departement. She was two years of my senior so we never made any contact at the university, but I shared a flat with some of her classmates so yes, her name and her face were familiar to me. She has a lovely petite figure, which made it easy to recognise her :)
I knew she went abroad for her master degree (later I learned that she went to Netherland), through friendster (without being her contact) I knew she married  a French man and moved to France, has a cute little boy...

When I moved to Jordan, a friend told me that Ina is currently reside in Amman too. We made contact through facebook, she called me at the hotel and we met up in PAUL cafe at the City Mall.

We clicked straightaway, we did not meet that often but tried to catch up whenever we can, spent some times with the kids, Indonesian women gathering, watched late night movies at the cinemas after her kids went to bed (while mine were still running around the house but poor husband of mine happily agreed to be with the kids while I was having ladies night out), and lots of shopping trips to flea market, downtown, outlets, shopping centers...

And the kids are so get on well together!

Our kids at The Children Museum of Jordan
As long as I can recall, its only with Nicolas that Dilara has never get any argument with, never cried when they were together, never told me Nicolas did this did that. For them only laughter laughter and laughter even when they had nothing to do or to say, even small thing could make both of them burst in to laugh :) Even when they don't know the words, because both of them speak little Indonesian, Dilara know nothing of French, Nicolas neither of Turkish, but thank God Nicolas knows little English (Nicolas attended French school but he took a private english lesson). So its a mix of everything but who needs a same language when you are kids and you have a big lovely heart, right?

I just love to hear Nicolas calling DilaRa with his strong R French accent :)

Ali and Raphael are about the same age and because of their multilingual nature they haven't spoken much. But they always find a way to play together :)

So its a great loss to me when it is time for Mbak Ina to leave after 4 years living in Amman. we are together in this city only for less than a year! I found this lovely pattern that I made for her during Themealicious Obligation October.

It is a very simple and small project so I wanted to turn it into something special and useful. So I took it to a random frame shop that I found on the way to downtown and when I saw him has an example of a box, I asked him if he could make a box for me too. I gave him the description, we agreed on a price and he said he would call me in a week to collect it. One week passed he didn't call. Closer to 2 weeks, I called him. He reasoned that he'd been sick so he hadn't made it yet but it would be ready in 3 days. I said no worries I called you in 3 days. I called to pick it up he said come in 2 days, I couldnt go on that day so I called again can I get it tomorrow, he said come in 3 days... and on and on and on until more than 1 month after I took it there! I was getting cranky so finally we agreed on time and date and... it was a disaster! The box was rough, uneven, and the worst of all didn't show my full work! The framed picture was not straight, the name Le Duguey was almost cut at the top, the bottom was also cut (Ina and Manu name were almost cut and Nicolas and Raphael name were nowhere to be seen!). The left side was also cut, where the word LA should be you can only see A. My goodness! He claimed that he didn't cut it off only folded it and promised to fix it in 3 days but I was so disappointed, can't think straight because my husband was in hurry to catch a plane to Aussie... I gave him another chance but on the way back and also at home I couldnt help but crying! I really don't know what to do because I have no time to go to another shop or stitch another one!

After a lot of hassle finding the taxi, describing the way, got lost, tried to call him etc etc etc... to my relieve he made a better job this time. Not as perfect as I wanted in the beginning but this time its acceptable. 

Two days after that when I held a gathering in my house for some Indonesian ladies (I cooked delicious Indonesian chicken porridge, perfect for cold winter weather, yumm) , I proudly presented it to her :

When being asked what is she going to put in the box, she said she wanted to use it as a JOY Box instead of a Joy Jar as adopted from this idea:

loving this for next year - The Joy Jar. Put the good things that happen all year in - and take them out at New Years just to remind yourself of all the good things that happen to your famly every year. (from facebook)
Au revoir Mbak Ina... Selamat jalan dan selamat pindahan to your 'La Maison Du Bonheur'. I don't  want to think how Amman would be for me without her anymore... I do still have some other good friends but still it is sad when one of your good friends is leaving. I told Dilara that maybe we can meet up with Nicolas in Indonesia and I like to think that at least if one day I finally have a chance to go to France I have something else to look forward to (beside Eiffel and Louvre): to visit Mbak Ina in her quiet village :) 

Next Monday we will have a send off party with Indonesian ladies in her apartment, we planned to go to watch late night movie again for the last time on Tuesday. We want to watch the Hobbit... I so look forward for seeing the Middle Earth again but some of my friends told me I'll probably be homesick for NZ afterwards... and watching it with Ina who is leaving soon, maybe it will be a bitter sweet one?
She will go on Friday, the same time with our flight to Turkey but we are going with Turkish Airlines while she and her family are going with Royal Jordanian Air. I am afraid we will be in different terminals even though it would be nice to catch up at the airport for the last time...

PS: 'Mbak' means big sister. In Indonesia it is impolite to call someone who is older than you (or maybe younger/same age but you respected her for some reasons) by name only. It is Javanese word but commonly used in Indonesia in general. 

***** many thanks, terima kasih, sağol, شُكْرًا

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Featured on Finish Friday

Last friday my Javanese wedding couple was featured on Finish Friday.

Thank you Andrea!

***** many thanks, terima kasih, sağol, شُكْرًا

Monday, December 10, 2012

Themealicious November: I Nail Them All!

Hello... its me again with another belated Themealicious post! Phewww I can't believe after we bought our own connection (using wifi modem with cellular simcard) I still had problem with the internet! The connection was so slow (probably because we live in the ground floor) so we continued using the internet from the apartement (which suddenly got faster on the day we bought our own modem, it drove my husband mad :p). But on the last week of November the connection stopped so we had to use our super slow internet. It was so slow that it was impossible to do anything, and it disconnected on the 4th of December when my husband was in Australia and I received an invoice of 52JD. We subscribed for 27JD internet so I didnt want to pay until my husband is back. Last night we sorted it out, apparently they sent a wrong invoice to my cellphone (phewww) and I just found out that if I put the modem on top of TV cabinet it made the connection clearer. I wish I knew it earlier!

Now NAIL NOVEMBER. A lot of happy dance because I successfully finished all my WIPs! Thank you so much Themealicious, I wont be able to do it if it wasnt because of you!

So, as I mentioned in my check in post, I finished Hello Kitty (here the picture again):

Finally I made the backstitch for Margaret Sherry's Furry Friends (I made this during Jumanji June):

I want to make it as a wall hanger (where I can slip some letters or bills or postcard), now I really need to actually buy that sewing machine :)

And tadaaaa.... my masterpiece:

I love this Silvermoon Tea so much, everybody on my facebook likes it even my husband gave me a lot of compliment (its for his sister after all :p). Cant wait to start sewing the beads, but couldn't do it until I go to Turkey this end of the year because my sister in law (who live in Turkey) bought the Mill Hill beads for me when she was in the USA. Almost forgot to mention I changed the wording 'Earl Grey' to 'Nuray' (my sis in law's name). NURAY is Turkish name (derivated from Arabic) which means The Moonlight :)

Last one, I stitched the name of the baby boy:

Will post more details on each project once I've got them framed or sewed into something :)

Now Delightful December
The holidays are a time for least, that's the theory! No stress on whatever you want and enjoy!

Its getting cold and rainy more often in Amman I don't feel like going to the shop to buy the threads that I need for a new project. Serkan has been busier lately (just back from Australia and will go again to Afghanistan in a couple of days) its difficult to expect him to take me to the shop and Ali is more active than usual its hard for me to manage him in a market, so I am going to work on a kit that I already have:

 Its a chinese kit and I like to call it 'Winter Clock'. perfect for this time of the year :) I hope I could do most of it before we off to Turkey on 21st of December :)

***** many thanks, terima kasih, sağol, شُكْرًا

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Themealicious Nail It November Check In

This is a belated post, having absent from Themealicious for two months made me forgot that I suppose to make a check in post :)

This is how my Nail It November going so far:

Finished Baby Kitty project and completed Furry Friends by Margaret Sherry (except for the backstitch) during IHSW week:

My Silvermoon Tea is coming beautifully, this was the picture from a couple days to go, now I am very close to finish it :)

Hopefully for the last 5 days I would be able to complete the Silvermoon Tea and Margaret Sherry. Oh my friend Yasmine has finally given birth to a baby boy Mehmet Hakan Gumuş so I should start stitching the backstitch and the name/date for a project that I made for her baby during Obligation October :)

***** many thanks, terima kasih, sağol, شُكْرًا

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Long weekend - IHSW Nov Report

Hello, it's me again with my cross stitch and travelling stories :)

Last weekend was a long weekend in Jordan because we were observing 1st of Muharram (Islamic New Year) on Thursday and as usual the normal weekend in Jordan is Friday and Saturday.
However I couldn't do much stitching. I took Dilara to a friend house for a regular-once a week religion studies. We have decided its time for her to learn some about our religion and last Thursday was her first day. In Indonesia usually the children learn earlier, they go to an Islamic school, Islamic kindergarten, or go to Qur'an school in the afternoon after normal school, or invite a teacher for private lesson at home. Me an another Indonesian arranged for a teacher to come once a week in one of our houses (one day in my house and next week would be in her house, and so forth). Her daughter is attending the same school with Dilara, the same class and in fact Rania is Dilara's BFF so its perfect (except because they are so close so they easily distracted during lesson and couldn't wait for the lesson to finish so they can play). The teacher is the wife of an Indonesian student undertaking his master degree in Amman, we want the lesson to be in Indonesian language to encourage our children to understand and speak more of Indonesian.

On Friday we went to a housewarming party of Indian friends (YUM YUM and SUPER YUMMY food!) and on Saturday we went to Madaba and Mt. Nebo.

About stitching, I finally finished my Baby Kitty project. I hate this project a lot because so many white and white, and the stitch didnt show until I made the backstitch (and LOTS of tiny BACKSTİTCHES!)

Last July IHSW I made them up to this:

now completed:

so cute! my favourite part is the bottle :) I am thinking to make it as a cushion cover but I am not sure if I can sew it. I am planning to buy a sewing machine. I like brother but they are not available in Jordan. I read so many bad reviews about Singer (and many sweing machine sellers in Amman said so even though they are selling them), so I was interested when I see Janome L393. There isn't any particular review about it but in general Janome has a good reputation. I only unsure whether I could operate it or not because I never operate any seweing machine in my life. For singer there are many instruction videos on youtube and some of them come with DVD. What do you think? please help... I really want to turn it int something so Dilara could learn her alphabets from it.

And I also completed the whole part of Margaret Sherry's Furry Friends from Themealicious Jumanji June:

now only backstitch left, finger crossed I could do it before this month ended :)

Some my pics from visiting Madaba and Mount Nebo: (information taken from

Just 30km from Amman, along the 5,000-year-old Kings´ Highway, is one of the most memorable places in the Holy Land. After passing through a string of ancient sites, the first city you reach is Madaba, known as the “City of Mosaics."

Best known for its spectacular Byzantine and Umayyad mosaics, Madaba is home to the famous 6th century Mosaic Map of Jerusalem and the Holy Land. With two million pieces of vividly coloured local stone, it depicts hills and valleys, villages and towns as far as the Nile Delta.

The Madaba Mosaic Map covers the floor of the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George, which is located northwest of the city centre. The church was built in 1896 AD, over the remains of a much earlier 6th century Byzantine church. The mosaic panel enclosing the Map was originally around 15.6 X 6m, 94 sq.m., only about a quarter of which is preserved.

The Shrine of the Beheading of St John the Baptist

We also visited Mount Nebo:
on a clear day you can see Jerusalem from the highest point of the mountain, Syagha. Unfornately the monastery and basilica were closed (under renovation)

According to the final chapter of Deuteronomy, Mount Nebo is where the Hebrew prophet Moses was given a view of the Promised Land that God was giving to the Hebrews. "And Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho." (Deuteronomy 34:1).

According to Jewish and Christian tradition, Moses was buried on this mountain by God himself, and his final resting place is unknown. Scholars continue to dispute whether the mountain currently known as Nebo is the same as the mountain referred to in the Torah.

Islamic belief holds that Musa (Moses) was buried not on the mountain but a few kilometres to the west, somewhere beyond the River Jordan.

The Serpentine Cross sculpture (the Brazen Serpent Monument) atop Mount Nebo was created by Italian artist, Giovanni Fantoni. It is symbolic of the bronze serpent created by Moses in the wilderness (Numbers 21:4-9) and the cross upon which Jesus was crucified (John 3:14).
***** many thanks, terima kasih, sağol, شُكْرًا

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

busy busy week and TUSAL

Its been a busy week for me I feel so exhausted. But now when I am thinking about it, it wasnt that busy, I shouldn't get this worn out because of it but I don't know why, maybe I need to do more exercise. Unfortunately winter is coming I don't know if I am able to walk to the gym in the late afternoon (and back in the evening) for my zumba classes. Late afternoon after serkan is back from work is the only time for me to go to the gym since I still don't feel OK to put Ali in nursery.

Last thursday, there was a Bonfire Night in Dilara's School. I was so excited because the last time I saw fireworks for Guy Hawkes day was in 2007 (in Rolleston and New Brighton pier, Christchurch). Unfortunately to my disappointment there wasnt any fireworks, only a bonfire. Stupid me, it would be too expensive for the school to have fireworks, I thought later on. And maybe it was forbidden by the government for the security reason. There were some halloween related activities, our children didn't participate in any of them but Dilara went trick or treat (sort of) by walking through darkened class room and she got a bag of candy in the end.

On Friday, in the morning we went grocery shopping. We did it in a rush because Serkan had to go to the mosque but the mall and the supermarket was so quiet (Friday is a holiday and all the shops except supermarket open late afternoon after Friday prayer) it reduced my shopping stress. After that all afternoon I was busy cooking for dinner at The Loss family. I think the idea was stolen from 'The biggest dinner in the world', their children who went to ICS (the same school with Dilara) suggested having a fundraising dinner with a group of friends, the idea is that everyone brings their favourite dish and makes a donation as if going out to a restaurant and we donate all proceeds to MSF / Medicins de Frontiers (Doctors without borders), their chosen charity who is currently in Jordan working with Syrian refugees.
I made Turkish havuc pilav (Turkish carrot rice) and Jalangkotek from Indonesia as a starter. Jalangkotek is a particular dish from South Sulawesi, in Indonesia we called it pastel and it looked like empanadas. Many people like my turkish rice and jalangkotek was a huge success, it finished in no time! I dont have any picture but I promise to put a picture when I make it again, maybe with a recipe too :)
Loss family also played some music for us, what a talented family!

Saturday morning at 10 I went to their house today for our weekly private Arabic class, I dragged myself (and the whole family because Serkan had to drive me there and we couldn't leave the kids) out of the bed because I was still so sleepy from yesterday's cooking and dinner (we're back home at midnight) and I had to wake up very early to clean up the kitchen and the house because we will have a guest coming that day. I also ran to the mall nearby their house to buy a present for Dilara's classmate birthday party. After all the hassles, the tutor didn't turn up :( Serkan pick me up at 12 and I was aghast to see Dilara was still in the clothes that she wore from last night dinner and they were very wrinkly because she slept in them (she fell asleep on the way we just carried her to the bed). I have prepared her dress for the party and clearly instructed Serkan to put them on her before pick me up because we are going to the party straightaway. So we had to rush home again, I changed her clothes while Serkan and Ali were waiting in the car. Sigh.
She had a great time at the party though. Ali stayed at home so I kind of relaxed at the party, no need to watch him over as usual.

After party we immediately went to Mecca mall to meet Lizzy. Lizzy is a friend that I know when I was studying in New Zealand. We took the same class for one semester, she was doing the last semester of her bachelor degree and I was doing my first semester of Graduate Diploma.

Lizzy and her gigantic backpack attracted a lot of attention in Mecca Mall
Our kids love her a lot!
She is in her trip (almost) around the world for about 1.5 year and Jordan was one of her destinations. sSe took an Egypt-Jordan tour and after arriving in Aqaba (they took a cruise from Egypt) and touring in Wadi Rum-Petra-Madaba-Dead Sea, and had a 3 days break in Amman. She stayed with us for two nights, unfortunately we couldn't take her anywhere ın Amman because when she was here suddenly the winter finally remember that it needs to arrive in Jordan so weather was so cold, grey and for that 2 days Amman had its very rare rain. The good thing was we could just sit and talk talk talk, I couldn't get enough listening her amazing stories and looking over her pictures from Egypt, Borneo, Europe, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Hongkong and many more. She was grateful too she said it was such a nice break, not having to get up very early and be on the way all the time. The night before she flew to Turkey we took her to Al Fuhais just outside Amman to have an Arabic dinner in Al Zuweydeh restaurant. The place was fantastic, the food was delicious. I can still taste them in my tounge when I wrote this. Definitely one of my favourite restaurants in Jordan.

NOW: STİTCHİNG! (I almst forgot what this blog is about :-p)
I finally get back to my Silvermoon Tea. I will go to Turkey next month and I want to give it to my sister in law so I have to make it done by then. I haven't stitched much but getting in to it:

finished the whole top moon

At last, my TUSAL Jar:

I still use the same jar and the one inside the small tiny zip loc bag was my ORTs from Turkey last summer holiday. The book is the one that Lizzy left for me, I really want to read it but I have many stitching projects waiting for me to be done. hmmm...

***** many thanks, terima kasih, sağol, شُكْرًا