The Indanan family – Tormuzie , Carolyne, 5-year-old Zianne Caitlin, 2-year-old Ryan Alexander and baby Zaeila Camille – have lived in Beijing for six months. Tormuzie, a diplomat and CPA, and Carolyne, a nurse, hail from the Philippines; and their kids were born in Manilla, Bangkok, and Beijing! When the Indanans moved here from Bangkok this winter, Beijing treated them to their first-ever snowstorm. “We had lots of fun playing in the snow,” recalls Tormuzie. “We were ecstatic when we first saw it.”
Here are some of their Beijing favorites:
Beijing snack food
Tanghulu. Before we came here, we took this short Mandarin class and our teacher told us to have a taste of it. Since we tried it, we can’t walk past a vendor selling it without buying a stick or two.
Place for weekend fun
We love books and a visit to a bookstore on a cozy weekend is fun. We’ve been to the Friendship Bookstore and the two big ones along Wangfujing Street. Fundazzle is also a nice treat for the kids on a weekend.
Restaurant for a school night
Sometimes we head to Grandma’s Kitchen (it’s near our place), TGI Fridays or Peter’s Tex-Mex Grill (they’re near the embassy). They have these kiddie meals that our kids just love. Other times, we just call Annie’s pizza for a delivery.
Way to burn off steam
A trip to Haagen-Dazs will do! Just kidding. We play badminton, go swimming or head for some therapeutic body massage.
A cup of Starbucks coffee is quite a splurge. But if you love coffee, you don’t really mind.
If I’m not that busy, I try to head home early, pick everybody up, and head to a nearby restaurant so we can have a meal together. The day can’t end without me having to carry Zianne and Ryan on my back, or playing some hide-and-seek before bed.
Zianne has her Chinese lessons every Saturday morning. We made a commitment as parents to help our children, while they are at these tender ages, to maximize their experiences in every place we stay. We believe that these small, tiny things that we expose them to will help them become better people, and will form part of their lives. We are hoping that by the time they grow up, they will treasure them and use them to their advantage.
Thing to look forward to
The Olympics. It’s one of the reasons we agreed to a posting in Beijing. If we get lucky next year, we’re hoping to watch the opening ceremony live and not just from a telecast.
Paul’s Steak and Eggs. The place is cozy, service is fast, there’s value for money, and it’s very near the embassy.