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  • Writer's pictureVivian Foley

Costco, anyone?

I have been really pleased with myself recently in what I have accomplished making a full meal. A week ago I was able to make a bacon and black bean soup and even found some limes and cilantro to use as a garnish. I have been able to make some good artisan bread each week for the past few weeks and even pulled off a pork chop and apples main dish for a recent meal. That may not sound like much to you all, but the ability to shop and create meals has been complicated in this city and we have had to learn a lot about how and where to get things.


Many years ago when our children were young and we lived in the country outside Excelsior Springs, Missouri, our nearest grocery store was about 15 minutes drive. It was a Walmart supercenter and would generally provide everything we needed. About twice a month I would plan a bigger shopping day and drive for 30 minutes to the nearest Sam's Club and other specialty stores. There I generally purchased about 6 gallons of milk and other items in bulk to feed our big family. I had a routine and knew exactly where to get what I needed. At the time it all seemed complicated but little did I know the blessings of familiar stores and a car to put everything in.


Since we arrived in Singapore the task of finding and carrying foods has been quite the adventure. We have a local grocer that carries many items from many different countries. Some of those items are familiar and some are not. Some are quite expensive (like our occasional treat of Tillamook ice cream for S$15 ($12 USD) and others end up being fairly reasonable. The produce at this local chain is usually imported and can be quite expensive, although we have grown to love the Australian carrots, and South African grapes and blueberries. We are getting used to wide variety of foods available at the store and have figured out how to make some of the staples of life.


We have also discovered a flea market not too far from our home that has several produce and fruit stands which often come from Malaysia. We like to go there to purchase watermelon and fresh vegetables. The bananas here are different from the ones we typically would purchase from South America. They aren't generally as sweet and can come in small bundles like the ones in the picture below. We are pretty proud of ourselves when we can pull off getting everything we need in a couple of hours.


The other fun part of shopping here is carrying everything we get. We have two carts with wheels that we push around. On our latest shopping trip one of them was filled with a watermelon, yellow melon, and produce while we filled the other one at the grocery store. We usually walk to the stores and then ride the bus home which is always an adventure with our little carts. In another blog post sometime I will share more about the shopping malls here that are as big as a small city and have everything from libraries to bus terminals to hawker centers.


Purchasing and preparing foods has always been an act of service and love for me. I really love making something that others enjoy eating and I find enjoyment in making and eating a good meal. I love to share foods with others and especially my family. For Valentine's Day this year I was pleased to make chocolate chip cookies for the missionaries in our Singapore Zone to show my love for them. These small acts of service help me feel joy in the midst of hard work and the unfamiliar nature of my current circumstances.





1 - 25 years of minivans replaced by this!?

2 - One of the stores we have been to twice to is a six-story, two city block monstrosity. It has the most ecelectic collection of things from all over the world, and has two dozen rows of chocolate!

3- Subway life

4 - We had our very first house guests this week with some missionaries and young adults. It was a delightful evening of family stories and treats.

5 - Elder Foley is substituting teaching Institute for a couple weeks. One session is hybrid with some in class and some remote, while the other is all virtual with students from across Malaysia and Singapore.

6,7 - Last of the Chinese New Year Lohei

8 - Fun visit to our local library

9-15 - We just love walking through Singapore Botanic Gardens


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8 Comments


krzybee
Feb 28

Sounds like an awesome adventure! Love you guys! Xoxo

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Sean Foley
Sean Foley
Feb 28
Replying to

We love you guys!

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mikaele.foley
Feb 28

TERIMA KASIH (which, BTW, is exactly the same in Indonesian) for sharing these insights into your mission life in Singapore. When Aunty Sally & I were in Bandung, Java, about 40-ish years ago, even tho' it was a city of about 1.5 million people, I don't remember any buses. People without their own transportation rode small buses (sorry, I've forgotten what they were called) which even then I could barely fit in . . . or rode these ubiquitous, even smaller vehicles called "bechak"s. Some were driven by men who sat behind and pedaled a bicycle mechanism, and others had a driver and motor engines.


The good thing about them is they would go door-to-door, for a negotiated price .…


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Sean Foley
Sean Foley
Feb 28
Replying to

Thank you Mike! These days there are electric bikes everywhere with Uber-style food deliveries.

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Vanessa Lee
Vanessa Lee
Feb 28

Lovely post, thank you! Sean, I miss seeing your face on my Teams screen.

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Sean Foley
Sean Foley
Feb 28
Replying to

Thanks Vanessa - I miss that as well. I really enjoyed the project we were able to work on together. I hope all is going well for you, your family, and FRFS!

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valora.frey
Feb 28

Temple bananas are incredible in pancakes

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Sean Foley
Sean Foley
Feb 28
Replying to

We will have to try that Valora!

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