Wednesday, April 30, 2008

they grow up too fast...

My boys are growing much too fast, for my taste.  They are almost at my chin.  I barely have to look down to talk to them.  I'm beginning to feel short.  They are only 8 years old for crying out loud!  I did the little mark on the wall last week.... they grew 1 inch since January!  STOP IT!!

They are begging to get out of their booster seats.  I know, I know, most moms have their kids out of that stuff by the time they are 5 or 6.  But I'm a stickler about safety.  They are staying in those seats until they are 4 foot 9 inches.  They have 2 more inches to go.  And trust me, they are counting the days.

On a related note, everyone in the 3rd grade has to write a letter to each of their classmates.  A project.  So Jake writes one to a girl in his class.  Part of it goes: You are the only person I know that is German.  Did you know you are kind of cute too?

LOL!  This is so funny.  One of the other 3rd grade moms commented that in K and 1st and 2nd there was lots of talk about girlfriends and boyfriends but in 3rd grade not at all.  The teacher said that it's all very serious in 3rd grade.  But she can tell that they are checking each other out.  Especially during Valentines day and then at the end of the year during the water party (when they have the water balloon fight).  Oh mercy.  It's too cute for words, but I'm not ready for that!!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

April is grilled cheese sandwich month!

I just found this out last night - from our boys' daily devotional book.  So I just got back from the store with "toastie" fixins.  Yes, toastie.  This is something I learned about in Singapore.  I ate one at the Jurong Bird Park.  The bird park is like a zoo for birds. A very touristy thing - I kinda regret going - but once I was there I was determined to enjoy it.  I'm not a big bird fan - they kinda scare me.  So just imagine me in the "Lory Loft".  A huge walk in cage area complete with boardwalks, and the idea was you could buy a little cup of food and have the birds eat from you.  Hah!  No way did I want a bunch of birds swarming me.  But I did enjoy watching the other fools do it.  The lorries are pretty.  Very colorful birds.  I'll have to post pictures (but again, it's right before school is out).

Back to toasties.  Apparantly it's what some countries call toasted sandwiches.  I was desperate for food, and ran into this little place that touted authentic Australian food.  The toastie I ordered was cheese, tomatoe with a little basil sprinkled on it.  Very tastey.

I promise I will not draw a parallel between the fact that we have a national grilled cheese sandwich MONTH with the growing waistlines in America.  LOL!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

the growing waistlines in America

Yes, this actually has something to do with my trip to Singapore.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, we need to study the habits of people in other countries.  Particularly the elderly. 

Went to the mountains a few years ago and I thought I was in pretty good shape.  We went on a hike up to a waterfall and we were huffing and puffing.  And trying not to be passed by an elderly Indian lady in full garb.  (not native American, but a person from India)  She wasn't wearing Nikes and water wicking shorts.  Heels and the full sari getup. 

Similarly, hiking up Diamond Head - how many stairs is it?  Couple hundred?  Again, trying not to get passed by the elderly Japanese couple - the man in slacks and a button collared shirt, the lady with her Prada purse and heels.  You'll see the elderly Japanese folks out for an early, early (I mean early) morning swim or walk. 

On my morning walks in the botanical garden in Singapore there were several large groups of retirees doing Tai Chi - I'm talking 50+ people per group!  And they walked there to get to class! 

I also like to talk about the lady at the marathon that I saw wearing a nice hat, carrying a purse and wearing something that was not running shoes.  Sure, I passed her very early on, but still, she was doing it.

The reason I'm saying this is because when Gary and I got on the subway to get around in S'pore - we felt like huge people.  We're not huge.  But in comparison, we are.  I felt like we took up so much space.

What is the secret?  This needs to be studied.

You could argue it's the food.  But I've already commented about the fast food restaurants there.  And even in the local hawker stands - they love the fried chicken.  Stir fry this, fry up that.  Curry is not low fat I'm finding out.  (explains why I didn't lose weight on this trip)  They don't do brown rice - you don't see organic this, whole grain that.

Maybe it's portion size?  Maybe it's the lack of sweets.  (or good sweets)  Maybe they are getting up at 4 am to exercise?  (Hmmm.... they seemed to like to eat at midnight - maybe it's sleep deprivation)

I'd like to chalk it up to genetics too.  But that's hardly a good motivator.  I'd like to think I have a fighting chance.

You read in the papers about how migrants come to America and get fat because of the change in lifestyle.  Well, how come the folks in S'pore have all the modern amenities and foodstuffs we do, but are rail thin?  It doesn't track.  There's something that's being missed.  It deserves a study.  Japan too.  I've seen the tourists that come here and they are rail thin.

I'm just thinking out loud.  Clearly I'm missing something that is obvious to 2/3's of the world.

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On an unrelated, yet similar note.  Jake tells me yesterday that he is 20 pounds overweight.  He says that his friend Ricky weighs less than him but is 3 months older!  I informed him that he is taller than Ricky, Ricky is a bit skinny and they are built different.  I was then told that Thomas (who is 9 already) weighs 90 pounds (whose mom told me that Thomas told her he weighed 95).  Well, Thomas is taller than Jake and has a dad who is 6' 5".  Yeah, he's gonna be a big boy.

Why are these boys obsessed with weight?  when did boys start caring about it?  And at such a young age.

These are things that I sorely dislike about our society.  I've said this before, why can't America have a normal relationship with food?

Back from Singapore

I took over 250 pictures, so there's no way I'll put them on here!  I'll have to pick and choose a few that capture the week.  I like this picture - Gary doesn't!  We're in a museum that's about the history of Singapore and we were given the okay to do this and get our picture taken.  We are NOT molesting the museum!

I highly recommend Singapore as a vacation destination.  English is everywhere - no problem there.  Public transportation is very good - a must since they drive on the wrong side of the road. <wink>  They have more McDonald's on their island than on this island!  And Starbucks!  I pride myself on the fact that I never ate at those places.  I did get some Coke Lights there (diet coke) - but I mostly ate local style food.  I was stunned to see that they also had Burger King, KFC, and Long John Silvers.  Kinda appalled to see so many American fast food joints.

It's all about food - so I'll be talking about that a lot.  I experimented, within reason.  I ate mostly chicken or vegetarian dishes - I wasn't going to go the seafood route.  But I did eat things that I couldn't tell you what it was.  Everything I ate was good.  I'll tell you that.

Food is a national pastime there, I do believe.  But it is not an obese nation.  Frankly, a little too skinny.  (is there such a thing as too skinny?)  So there are some secrets that our country could certainly learn. 

I'm way behind on cleaning the house and editing the pictures, so I really don't have time to do a proper update now.  I'm just reporting that I had a great time and I'm back!  The boys and the in-laws survived too.

Monday, April 7, 2008

trip coming up soon!

Right now Gary is at the airport picking up his mom and sister.  They will be here until we get back from our Singapore trip. 

I've been cleaning the house all day, but it's still a mess.  Also I'm in the middle of a messy project.  Renovating the outdoor table and chairs.  Scrubbing off the rust with a wire brush and then spray painting it.  I've waffled on the color.  Initially I bought "almond" - but it's turned out to be yellowy-green.  The original color is a taupe-y beige.  So now I'm doing black.  Good ole black.  I'm hoping it'll be chic.  Then I need to find some new cushions.  These ones are mildewy and have been pooped on more than a few times.  (by birds)  I'm keeping the furniture because it's still in pretty good shape and the chairs are so comfortable.  They swivel and rock.

Anyway, Gary and I are leaving for Singapore on Friday morning.  I still need to make an itinerary!  I've figured out the money thing.  They have these things called Visa travel money cards.  It's like a debit card - but not attached to any account.  You load it with money and can use it at Plus machines.  Apparantly Singapore has a good share of ATM's.  It's the way to go.  And easy to get.  I'm going to buy ours at Safeway.  Easy peasy.

So, I just wanted to say that I may not get to post much more, if at all.  We will not be taking the laptop.  I don't want to have to deal with figuring out voltage conversions and risk blowing out our new laptop.  We will be back in town on the 19th.  Late.  Then it will take a few days to get back in sync and load all the pictures on the pc.

The most important thing I've done to prepare for the trip?  Make all my reconstruction progress pictures "invisible"!  Wouldn't want my MIL stumble upon those!!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Lost sighting

but not by me.  My vortex buddies.  They were running in Lanikai on April 1 (but this is no April Fool's Joke) and they passed Evangeline Lilly.  She was running too, and doing that lip-bitey thing that she does a lot on the show.  She used to own (or rent?) a house in Lanikai, but it burned down last year.  Hurley (Jorge Garcia) used to live there too - he may still.  I recently found his blog and read it every so often. (someone told me about it, I'm not a stalker)  He's such a down-to-earth guy.  I hate doing the Lanikai loop because it's so crowded with runners and beachgoers - but I may have to make another swoop through one day.

I don't know if I reported this already, but a couple of weeks ago, Jennie, my friend, saw Desmond - of course we asked her "with long or short hair?"  Long hair.

It seems that Matthew Fox's child goes to a local private school.  His wife can be seen there at fundraisers and at pick up time.  Apparantly she doesn't shave her pits...  Well, that's the word on the streets...  I have my sources...  No judgement calls, I'm just saying...

I guess they are back in town filming the last few episodes of the season.

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I want to go see the movie Run, Fat Boy, Run.  The premise is just so crazy - deciding to run a marathon with only 3 weeks to train, and having never run a step in your life.  That's a train wreck I want to see!  It'll provide good imagery for when I do the Honolulu Marathon this year.  BTW, early sign up in the first weekend in May at Niketown.  woo-hoo!  I thought I had missed it.  I guess it's delayed due to the timing chip fiasco.

And just as a reminder - I'm a walker NOT A RUNNER!!  And proud of it!