Father’s Day 2016. With many people coming over to our home every Sunday for fellowship, we had to get up super early to share a little bit of time together in the morning before our guests started to arrive. This mama had stayed up late, making Justin a special “breakfast” treat. Fortunately, we all woke up feeling rested and ready for a day of “daddy celebrations”. Elijah and I gave Justin a couple of gifts – he was very happy with the Qingdao Starbucks mug that you see above. It has various Qingdao landmarks carved into the sides of it. He now has two Starbucks mugs, but I knew he was eyeing this one (and gosh, he is not easy to buy gifts for!) Excuse these shirtless pictures – it is really hot in China now, and this is how we roll at home. As I imagined (and hoped) Justin was MOST SURPRISED by the Milk tart* that I made him. After Elijah’s birth, a South African friend brought us a meal and milk tarts, which has been Justin’s favorite South African dessert. It is not normally eaten for breakfast, but again, that’s just how we roll here. Dessert first in this house!
*Milk tart is a South African dessert consisting of a sweet pastry crust containing a creamy filling made from milk, flour, sugar and eggs. The ratio of milk to egg is higher than in a traditional Portuguese custard tart or Chinese egg tart, in which both was influenced by the Portuguese, resulting in a lighter texture and a stronger milk flavour. Cinnamon is sprinkled over its surface.
After all of our guests had left, we raced to get downtown so that we could perhaps eat as a family, but alas, we didn’t make it! Elijah often falls asleep by 12pm, so getting anywhere to eat on a Sunday – with him still awake – usually doesn’t happen. Of course, these outings then end up feeling like a date, which is great, but since it was Father’s Day, we wished that he was awake and eating with us. With our Europe trip coming up, we hit up a big H&M sale and bought a few summer items for our trip. Since we don’t go shopping very often, this was a wonderful treat for us.
In the morning I had presented Justin with three lunch options, and he chose to eat at Baker & Spice, in the MixC mall located in downtown Qingdao. Baker & Spice is a deliciously scrumptious bakery café chain in China. Turkish pide, chunky fruit loaves, to die for farmhouse carrot cake, delicious Danish pastries, sinful cakes, cupcakes and an extensive range of specialty hand crafted artisan sourdoughs, traditional baguettes, multigrain, fruit & nut, olive, corn and 100% Danish rye breads. The meals here are fresh, delicious and wonderfully presented. Ordering happens over a glass bakery counter – which is very distracting/ tempting – and after paying, patrons are given a number and can go sit down anywhere in the restaurant. The interior is modern, and the service is chilled but spot-on!
You might have noticed a mention of “Turkish Pide” above. Admittedly, we assumed that we had simply ordered a couple of pizzas, but while writing this post I came across more info on these tasty dishes. Below are our Pides, a traditional Turkish dish to fill you up and bring a smile to your lips. These are an absolutely classic staple in Turkey. This warming doughy concoction is about the closest you can get to a home grown Turkish equivalent of pizza.
Even though Elijah ended up sleeping right through lunch, I was disappointed to see that Baker & Spice have since removed their kids play area. I first came to this restaurant about a year ago, with two other moms, and our little ones really loved the lego and toys. That was part of the reason that I suggested Baker & Spice as a lunch option for our family date. I’m sure that they did this to provide more space for seating, but still, very disappointing!
July 2015, Violet and Eli having fun with Lego
After lunch, when Eli finally woke up, we jumped in a Uber ride and made our way home. Boy oh boy, I haven’t told you about the current taxi strikes. Wow… major road rage and drama in Qingdao! We ended Father’s Day at home, playing cars with Elijah. We are thankful for this family, and the special love that we share. Thank you for everything you do for us Justin, you are an incredible father!