Have you ever seen "A Room With A View"? It's one of my all-time favorite movies. It was made in 1985 and was adapted from a novel by E.M. Forster, also known for writing "Howards End" and "A Passage to India".

Anyway, I saw this movie when I was a teenager and the thing that struck me the most is the love story of course, plus the setting was in Tuscany and English countryside so who can resist that? :) It's the story of a young girl (played by a very young Helena Bonham-Carter) who finds herself in a love triangle, between a man whom society would like her to marry (played by Daniel Day-Lewis) and another who is more free-spirited and unconventional (played by Julian Sands) but who truly loves her.

A truly unforgettable scene is the stolen kiss in the Tuscan fields (photo seen above)... melts your teenage girl's heart :)

If you see it on sale in a DVD store, I highly recommend you buy it :)


We're big salad eaters in my house. Ever since I was small, I can remember my mom making salad almost every other day. It can be just salad leaves or a mixture of red beans, broccoli, paprika, anything she finds in the fridge actually :)

But what makes the whole difference is of course the salad dressing. And many times, friends have asked me how to make the dressing and it's actually really simple.
I found the images above on Goop.com, Gwyneth Paltrow's blog which I recently discovered and the recipes are from her interview with Jamie Oliver so it should be delicious :)

If you need ideas on what types of salad to make at home, here are a few that we like to make:
* cucumber (sliced very thinly)
* carrots (grated)
* tomatoes (diced) with hard boiled eggs
* romaine salad, avocado and tomatoes
* broccoli, red beans, red paprika and tuna



Bina Cita Utama is a national-plus school located in around 30 km from Palangka Raya, Central Kalimantan. Bina Cita Utama means to nurture ideals, dreams, hopes and ambitions which are noble, or of the highest standing.

I recently watched a short documentary about this school that shows exactly how powerful education can be. The students of this school come from well to-do families in Palangka Raya and the school aims to teach these children how to be honorable people so that in the future, they are able to contribute to the development of their communities.

I love how, at the end of the movie, one of the patrons of the schools says: "It's not about what they (the children) have been taught, but about what they've learned". I can honestly say I was quite teary-eyed when I watched this documentary...

To watch the movie, click here.

To learn more about Sekolah Bina Cita Utama, click here.


I recently went on a working trip to Central Kalimantan, more precisely to an area called Bukit Batu, near Palangka Raya. The foundation where I now work has many projects there to help the people in Bukit Batu area. These people have a very low income so they are often unable to pay for health expenses, are not able to send their children to school and are often unable to work because of a lack of skills.
That is why Yayasan Usaha Mulia (YUM) has started to concentrate in this area, focusing first on eradicating malaria which was a huge mortality cause in the region. At the same time, YUM built Clean Water towers (since people were still taking water from the river, often polluted), started to educate people on Health & Sanitation, gave school sponsorships and opened a Children's LIbrary & Resource Center.

I won't go in detail all the things that YUM is doing there. If you want to know more and want to help YUM, you can click here. But I want to share with you the beauty of the area and how I've been completely mesmerized by it! So here are a couple of photos....



Last night, I saw a documentary called "The Truth About Food" on BBC Knowledge. It was a special show on kids and I learned a lot so I thought I would share with you.

Food is a big topic right now and I think all parents are aware that it's becoming more and more difficult to control our child's eating habits, what with television ads and an enormous variety of food (mostly unhealthy) at the supermarket.

Here are some tips from the show (that you can see also here):
  • Don't give up feeding children vegetable. Perhaps ask an older sibling to encourage trying new foods with your child and keep repeating exposure little and often - 10 is the magic number.
  • Don’t ban anything, it will only reinforce the association with unhealthy foods.
  • Use non-food rewards such as sticker charts.
  • For an extra edge in the morning make sure you eat a breakfast of complex carbohydrates- wholemeal breads and cereals, beans, and eggs.
  • Parents play a direct role in children’s eating patterns. Set the example by eating at the table with your children and save the TV until after dinner.
  • Avoid supersize, king-size or 25% extra food.
Another great website that talks about food for kids is KidsHealth.org. I found a part where they tell us how much of each food group is needed for each child (according to their age). You can click here to go straight to that page.

(image found on this website)



Uncultured Project is not a charity or an organization. It's a guy named Shawn who is Canadian and was in graduate school when he listened to a speech by Dr. Jeffrey Sachs (the author of the book "The End of Poverty"). After hearing the speech, Shawn decided to withdraw from grad school, liquidate his savings and start making a difference one project at a time.

I've seen several movies that Shawn has uploaded on YouTube and it's really moved me to see how simple it is to make a difference. Sometimes, it's as simple as $13 (or Rp. 100,000) to pay for school books.
It's seeing the faces of the people he's touched that is inspiring and makes me want to make a difference on my own.

Click here if you want to see other Uncultured Project movies.


My parents are selling their lovely house in Bintaro and maybe you might know someone interested to take over this beautiful home. It was built about 15 years ago, from scratch, and my mom oversaw all the construction and finishing. It has a mediterranean feel to it, lots of open windows and the upper floor has a huge living area with a very high ceiling and bamboo floors.

If they could, my parents would probably keep this house but they are planning to build a new house close to my house and my brother's so we can see each other more often :)

The area is a very calm neighborhood and the guards' hut for the area is right in front of the house so it's strategically located for security.
Close to the house, you have the toll road that leads to Taman Mini and Tangerang, an international hospital, several National Plus schools, lots and lots of restaurants and a huge mall with cinema, supermarket, etc.

UPDATE: Sorry guys, this house has been sold...



While we were in Singapore, Amal bought an activity book from the Mr. Men and Little Misses series, and we've been talking about them ever since. I forgot how cute they were! I love that each Mister or Miss has it's own character or attitude and children can relate to them. Each child goes through a daredevil phase, grumpy phase, nervous phase :)

I also recently discovered their website. It has games and videos in it for kids. Cool!


It's the beginning of a new school year and something that each school recommends is to: label your kids belongings! Because, of course, during the course of the school year, your child will definitely lose her school uniform, socks, carry-file and maybe even his/her shoes or bag!

So I found this great post on the Family Fun website and I've made this for my son's belongings. Actually, he easily made this by himself, all I needed to do was to provide the material. Photo No. 2 is the finished result :)

Go here is you want to make this tag.



The photos above aren't exactly the healthiest food around, but blueberries are well known for being a great antioxidant (and we all need that!) and the tart has lots of zucchini on it :)

I recently found a great website called ClubSehat.com where you can order online lots of great health food. For example: I saw that they had molasses, which is the "healthy" unprocessed sugar, and lots of beans & grains (like quinoa, millet, couscous, chickpeas, canellinis, etc).
I also saw they had bakso jamur and kwetiau labu, two things I'd love to try out one of these days! Yummm!!

The two photos above are recipes I found on Closet Cooking and that I'd like to try out one of these days:



Aren't these the best looking recipes ever? You can find them here:


I love collecting pictures of interior design, just for inspiration purposes. And since I have a 5 year old son, I like to see what's out there in the boy's room designs. These are some of my favorites.

The first one is a wall mural of Napoleon Dynamite hand-painted by Gabrielle Blair (better known as Design Mom). I am so in love with it, especially knowing that it was especially made by a mom just for her tween son.
The second design I find very scandinavian, and I love everything scandinavian :) This design I found on Stephmodo's blog a couple of weeks ago.
And the third design, I think I found it on the Living Etc website (but it's been a while so I might not be right). I love the bed and the colors of the wall.



It's funny because a couple of days ago I was talking to my son about making a family tree (he still has a hard time knowing who is who and how we are related). And while browsing stephmodo, voila she posts about modern family trees! Excellent!

I think I've been inspired by one of these designs and I'm going to make a family tree of my own one of these days. If you'd also like to do the same, go to this site and be inspired :)

(seen via My Tree and Me)



Today, I wanted to make it sweet and simple: I love food, especially fresh, delicious food and I couldn't help but be inspired by these images to eat healthy and think about what comes into my mouth :)



Ok, so Singapore is beautifully multi-ethnic and so the food is fascinating. However, I do have a preference towards the chinese food (as you can see above).

A couple of restaurants I went to and can highly recommend:
1. PS Cafe - 28B Harding Road
Loved the sangria and the desserts are heavenly! I tried the Double Chocolate Blackout Cake and I really blacked out after that cause I was so full :)
2. Brussels Sprouts - The Pier @Robertson (photo 1)
I have dreamed of eating mussels and french fries for such a long time and I finally got that! Add to that a cherry beer (Kriek) and I was in heaven!
3. Sakura - @ MRT Buangkok (photo 2&3)
Finger-licking good crab with salted egg sauce! I literally licked my plate! And their oyster omelette was also really delicious.
4. Food Republic - Wisma Atria, Orchard Road (photo 4)
Another must-go-to place for excellent food is Food Republic and my usual purchase is: Hokkien Prawn Noodle and Hakau. The Hakau is crazy good and enormous. As for the Hokkien Prawn Noodle, just look at the queue and you'll soon discover how good it is :)


This is the Jacob Ballas Children's Garden, located in the Singapore Botanical Gardens. This garden is for children up to 12 years old, so if you're not coming with a kid, sorry you won't be let in :)

Kids can learn about different types of plants and how plants are a part of our daily lives. Amal especially liked the hanging bridge and the treehouse. But there's also a small playground and a water park with water coming out from the ground in a fountain-like manner.

Click on the link here to get more information about this very fun garden!


My son, my mom and I just came back from a 3-day trip to Singapore. I've been there several times on my own and I've visited several parks there and always thought to myself that I absolutely had to bring my son there. Singapore has a couple of fantastic parks and I'll show 2 of them here.

First off is HortPark, also known as The Gardening Hub. This park displays small little gardens to inspire us on our own home gardening. Among more than 20 theme gardens, there are the Recycling Garden, the Herb & Spice Garden and the Community in Bloom Garden. There are also several big lawns (where Amal played frisbee) and a couple of playgrounds.

If you're interested to go there on your next visit, here's the address:
33 Hyderabad Road (off Alexandra Road), Singapore



While we are on the subject of art, this painting by Francoise Nielly caught my eye a few months ago when I got my monthly e-newsletter from The Cool Hunter. I think it's breathtaking! I love the colors and the image feels so alive. I dream of the day I get a portrait done by this artist.



MISS.TIC is a graphic artist who has her art all over the walls of Paris. Who is MISS.TIC? Before creating her stencil art, MISS.TIC was a poet, a newspaper critic, and a street theatre performer. She turned to stencil art in 1985 and soon had her first solo show in Paris in 1986. "The wall is the territory of my poems," she says. "It is my publisher." She is more than a graphic artist; she is a poet, who writes with pictures and words.

I still remember seeing her work around Paris when I was studying there and I thought they were super cool, very rebellious, and it felt like art that was available for all to see. It was even more exciting that it was a woman who was going out on the streets and plastering the walls with her art.



I love the design of this kitchen which I found on Decor8's blog. The pictures are taken from a Danish magazine called Bolig. I have to add that I'm in love with everything scandinavian so it's hard for me not to fall in love with this kitchen...

My favorite part is the nook, which I would definitely add to my house if I had the money. I remember my grand-parents had a nook in their kitchen when they were living in Alsace, France. We ate our breakfast there and it felt so cozy and homey.

(seen via Decor8)