Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Chuseok with boyfriend's family

Last week Sunday was Chuseok (추석), this year i was planning on going to my boyfriend's mother’s house in the Eunpyeong-Gu to see his family. He suggested me join him and meet the family and I agreed! 
This is going to be the best vacation ever. I will have the opportunity to spend time with his family. I am very lucky to have such a great boyfriend that has the opportunity to get together with his family. There are a lot of couple that are less fortunate and cannot afford to do something this special, i am very grateful!

I woke up early and went to my boyfriend's mother's house. I liked the Eunpyeong-Gu, and I thought it was good place, but i grew up in a very small town so i don't really have anything to compare it to. 
I really enjoyed living there and I plan to return to Eunpyeong-Gu in October.

This year, Chuseok fell on September 7, and traditionally Chuseok is celebrated over a three day period (from September 8-10). Chuseok is a time to share food with one’s family and to thank the ancestors for a bountiful harvest.
Traditionally, Koreans return to their hometowns to celebrate with their families, so many Koreans celebrate the holiday by going to their ancestral homes and paying respects to their ancestors. It’s such a short holiday, only three days, and it’s expected that traffic from Cheonan to the Seoul will be terrible and getting there isn't easy. Since I live alone in Korea, fortunately I don’t have to endure the rush hour for going down to my hometown.

Chuseok is a big traditional holiday, or it is also known as South Korean version of Thanksgiving day. Thanksgiving Day, is one of the most important and festival holidays of the year in Korea. During this celebration, all people will be holidaying with their families, and enjoy delicious foods to celebrate. Another Chuseok tradition in modern day Korea is that of gift giving, Koreans will present gifts to not only their relatives, but also to friends and business acquaintances to show their thanks and appreciation.

Some customary gift ideas are fresh fruit such as orange, grapefruit, apples, and gift sets of everything from traditional Korean snacks to useful items like shampoo, conditioner, tooth paste, soap, and so on. If you look around supermarkets and department stores before Chuseok, you will no distrust encounter a huge variety of gift sets on sale. Spam, which is extremely popular in Korea, is actually one of the most popular gift sets to present to those close and kind to you. Well, I got my Chuseok gift set from my Company, Woori Bank, and my boyfriend's Mother. It was a big box of Gingseng, Noodles, and toiletry products. It’s good that i won’t have to buy toiletries, noodles, and gingseng drink for at least six months!

The next day, in the morning we got up and went to Tapgol Eco Park (탑골생태공원)The park has a nature learning center, eco stream, and a marsh garden with a pond that was densely populated by water striders. The mountain village at the base was not a little surprise, it was bustling with people, little food vendors and cafes but a significant portion of the buildings were hiking. From the ground, all that can be seen of the park are the tallest peaks, but as i climbed higher it seemed as though smaller peaks were rising up and unfolding around me. At one point i was surrounded by mountains, patches of green and white that suddenly appeared in the haze, and i had no idea where they had come from. I didn’t think i’d be that into it, but views from the mountain were beautiful and amazing, and it was so many insects too. Anyway, i really hate insects so much!!!

   The view from the summit was breathtaking, and it was nothing but blue sky making the neighboring mountain peaks glow. It was quite the experience to think about looking up at the mountain peak at the start of the hike and then realizing that i was now standing on it. 
It makes me appreciate so much more the basic structures of my body, lungs and muscles, that carried me to this place. It is amazing incredible to have these places in the world, where the view alone takes your breath away.

Seeing her mom is diligent farmers working in their fields, i felt need to go with them, because i really curious. On that day, we're all going to the harvest! 

His mother raise sweet potato, peanut, chestnut, palm, pumpkin, beans, flowers, and some vegetables. His mom always controls her yields everyday too.

I am in it for the long haul with my boyfriend and there's no regret for me. 
My life may have drastically changed the moment I fell in love with a son of farmer! But you know, i wouldn't change it for the world and i'm not shy to tell everyone! I believe the good times will be good, the tough times will just make me stronger. I will continue to learn and grow. Growth is painful, Change is painful, But nothing is as painful as staying stuck somewhere you don't belong, right?! Truth is, i really love her son like i never thought possible. He's my boyfriend, my good father, and my best friend for me, because he taught me a lot of things and he tested me and he lifted me up, and he made me stronger.
I really love that man, I've never loved anybody else like him. I look forward to the adventures that lay ahead of us.

Moreover, i learn so much about how it all works. Every single day, i learn something new in the farm world too, it's really wonderful! My first year of experiencing planting and harvesting crops, i still marvel at how mother nature works together in order to make things grow. There's just something very satisfy about that type of hard work and working with nature to create healthy, nourishing food.

OK, here we go! We start harvesting now and i will show you the yields!

Date Palm (Phoenix dactylifera) is a highly nutritious fruit, it is rich in sugar, iron, potassium, calcium and nicotinic acid. Date palms produce 1- to 3-inch-long sweet fruits that hang from the trees in long strands. Ripening in midsummer, each tree produces an abundance of ripe fruit. The palms are naturally pollinated by wind and insects as long as there are both male and female trees nearby. Proper harvesting ensures the fruit is picked at its ripest.

Chestnuts have a quite remarkable nutritional composition that sets them apart from all other nuts and makes them an outstanding food source which can be a dietary staple. The flavour, texture and sweetness of the nuts from different chestnut species and varieties varies widely, from tasteless and bland to very sweet and flavoursome. Chestnuts fall in the autumn and ideally should be gathered every day over peak not fall because of their highly perishable nature and their susceptibility to predation by possums and rats which relish the nuts.

Some vegetables harvest

Peanuts are members of the legume family along with beans and peas. The fruit they produce is actually a pea rather than a nut. The plants have a unique and interesting way of developing. After the flowers are fertilized, they create a peg that extends downward from the flower’s ovary. The peg grows from the ovary down into the soil where the peanuts form. 
Peanut harvest time is 90 to 110 days after planting for boiling types and 130 to 150 days after planting for roasting varieties. Normally, you can harvest peanuts in fall when the leaves begin to yellow. Pull a plant and check the pods before harvesting the entire crop though to be certain about the peanut harvest time. The pods are the best indication of when to dig up peanuts.

Sweet potatoes generally need at least 4 months of frost free growing. 
The sweet potatoes are ready to harvest as soon as they reach your particular size. It's best to harvest on a sunny day when the soil is not too wet. Begin by pulling aside the vines so you can see where you're digging. 
Separate the sweet potatoes and let them dry in the sun for no more than one hour. Handle freshly dug sweet potatoes gently to avoid bruising. Sweet potatoes left in the ground wil. The Sweet potatoes are grown from slips, which are sprouts that are grown from stored sweet potatoes.

Pumpkins do best when the seeds are directly planted in the ground. However, if your growing season is very short, seed indoors in peat pots about 2 to 4 weeks before last spring frost. Be sure to harden off before transplanting.
Most people want them before that time, another sign that a pumpkin is ready to be harvested is that the stem starts to crack. Pumpkins are tender squash like annuals with smooth rinds scored with vertical grooves. 
Fruits can range in size from a few ounces to hundreds of pounds and in color from deep orange to white. Large, green leaves grow on branching vines that can reach 20 feet long. Large male and female flowers grow on the same vine. The name pumpkin is also given to other hard, orange squashes and gourds.

That night, we went to eat dinner at Korean restaurant. Food is also an important part of our annual event. For the dinner we ate pork bone soup (감자탕). It’s very hot and spicy so it can remove oily feelings in our stomach. Gamjatang is a spicy pork bone stew that is considered a traditional Korean dish which is hearty and rich in flavour. 
Gamja means potato in Korean but in this particular dish, it is actually referring to the pork bone itself. This stew is assorted with vegetables such as cabbage, potato, green onions and bean sprouts. And it is heavily seasoned with garlic, red chili peppers and roasted perilla seeds. All gamjatang dishes may be similar in appearance, but the taste varies from one restaurant to another. 
This dish is known to be rich in proteins, calcium and Vitamin B1 (from the pork bones) and is believed to prevent snoring as well as aging. 

Last but not least, that was my vacation and i hope to be able to take another vacation again soon.

Christin Tomntins
Tom and Tins, Updated at: 1:49 PM

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you everyone for visiting my blog, it means alot to me! Please feel free to leave your comments here and I think it is great to support each other, so if you want to follow each other, just let me know in the comments!