Friday, December 29, 2006

a little bit of shopping today...

I had a gift card burning a hole in my pocket, so the first chance I had, I blew it all!!  Sports Authority.  I bought a bunch of clothes for my walking endeavor.  The kind of fabrics that keep you cool and dry, so, while I could have gotten a lot more for my money, these are a little pricey.  But I did manage to find some sales.  I bought 3 pairs of black shorts.  Yes, all black, but 3 different styles.  I need to experiment and see what works best.  I hear that what works for 6 miles doesn't work for 13 miles.  I bought 3 shirts, and a 3 pak of dry socks.  For all that, I owed only $6.  Woo-hoo!  (and I didn't even walk yesterday...)  LOL!

Sheila's back!!  and she looks like Phyllis!  (correction: Y&R)

I was able to get out by myself today because Gary took the boys to Schofield Barracks (an Army post here) for a cub scout thing.  He took some cute pictures.  I'll try to post a few.  But theirs and my trip got cut short due to the dumb Striker thing.  The judge came back with a ruling, so Gary had to go into work and he has to interpret what it means or something like that.  You know lawyers, they have to check out all the loopholes.  :-)

Anyway, early this morning I went to get my 3rd fill.  Put in 75 cc's.  Ka-bam!  I'm getting me some booby!  At first it felt heavy, and a little like having a softball on my chest, but at the moment it's a little sore.  I asked the nurse and she said it'll be about 4 more fills.  The PS wasn't there.  She asked me if I wanted to go B or C and I said B.  I want to match the other size.  I really don't want to go bigger (it'll make me look fatter).  I think B is the best size for me.  She said that some ladies get lifts on the other side, and that's definitely what I want to do.  Although I dread the thought of surgery on the "good" side.  But I really don't one side to be that of a teenager and the other side to be that of a 40 something who's had twins.

Finally, I'm going to get to play the gameboy!

Thursday, December 28, 2006

images from Christmas

A Christmas tradition I started when we had the boys was to bake a birthday cake for Jesus.  This year we did it with cupcakes.  Unfortunately, I don't have all my "stuff", so I had to improvise with an assortment of paper plates and such.  Looks pretty bad, but the boys liked the "tower"! 

Another tradition is to do an advent calendar.  Last year I bought a reusable calendar from , John Piper's wife had created this burlap hanging with velcroed figurines.  Here it is complete with baby Jesus in place!

This is a picture of the star that mom bought for me at the flea market.  If you ever get to Oahu, you MUST go to the flea market at the stadium.  It's held every Wednesday and Saturday.  You get the BEST souvenier bargains.  This star was positioned in such a way that it was an eye hazard to me and Gary every time we passed it!!  LOL!

Cookies for Santa (oreos). 

Pictures of the boys:      Jake     


    gray haired me trying to open a gift  

yes, all they've done is play game boy  


And hold on to your hats, the best present ever.  I apologize in advance for causing you to covet.  My DH picked out this adorable purse for me.  He knows that I can't carry a shoulder strap purse any more.  And I've been eyeballing purses like this.  Isn't it darling??

I'm sorry if the pictures come out too small.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas!

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  He was with God in the beginning. 

Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.  In him was life, and that life was the light of men.  The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John.  He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe.  He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.  The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.

He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him.  Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God -- children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God.

The Word became flesh, and made his dwelling among us.  We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth."

John 1:1-14

Not the typical passages used for the Christmas story, but ain't it great?!

We went to see The Nativity yesterday.  I very much recommend it, especially if you can manage before you cast aside all things Christmas.  It'll really help put that visual in your mind when you read the nativity story to your kidlings.  It's got some strong scenes - but it was okay for my 7 year olds.

And finally, this song is my wish for you and yours:

Feliz Navidad
Feliz Navidad
Feliz Navidad
Prospero año y Felicidad

I want to wish you a Merry Christmas
I want to wish you a Merry Christmas
I want to wish you a Merry Christmas
From the bottom of my heart

I'll be back... sometime after the big day.

<IMG height=1 loop=3 dynsrc= width=1 autostart="true">


Thursday, December 21, 2006

santa hats

at school yesterday, the kids had a carol sing along.  I took a couple of pictures, but these two were the best of the bunch...

Those little pointy santa hats are so funny.  They looked like a sea of gnomes.  The 2nd grade class sang "Rudolph" in Japanese.

I finally made the buckeyes are they were sooooo good.  I knew I was in danger, so I stuck a batch in the freezer and when they got firm I boxed them up and sent them to my neighbor.  We were left with a lot and they just got polished off.  *sigh*  They really didn't stand a chance.  Note to self, it's too warm here to mess with making any more.

sometimes you just gotta love this place!

Right now on tv is an "island style" Christmas special - complete with ukulele and hula, singing and stories.  And just the previous hour on another channel (a major channel) was real hula dancing by some of the local hula groups (probably from the Kamehameha schools, but I didn't see who sponsored it or anything, I just caught a few minutes of it).

Gary had his first famous person sighting today.  He saw a famous Sumo wrestler, who is now retired, Konishiki.  He was in normal attire, he didn't even have a top knot!

This guy is huge.  He weighs like 640 pounds.  He was actively wrestling when we lived here last. 

Another famous, but retired, Sumo wrestler is Akebono.Akebono is a svelt 550 pounds.  He is Hawaiian born, which is a big deal in the Sumo world not being Japan born.  I believe he was the first to break the barrier.  We used to watch him too on tv.

Last week, when I was mailing packages, I had my first confirmed famous sighting.  You've heard of Famous Amos cookies?  Well, Amos himself (Wally Amos) was in the post office!  Very tall black man with a funny hat on and he pulled out a kazoo and hummed out Jingle Bells for a little kid.  A very friendly personable man.He looks exactly like this!!  And he's just a friendly as he looks.

School is out for the boys.  I'm hoping we get to sleep in tomorrow -maybe all the way to 7a.m.!  Gary has taken off until next Wednesday!  Yipee!

Mercy, this show is so funny!  This lady  and man are reading the Night Before Christmas and inserting their own thing inbetween.  "day makin' fun of him cause he fat - day ain't nutin wrong wit a little extra!"  Now they are arguing about the man's pronunciation of Vixon - "how you spell dat, wit a B?  No wit a V as in bictory, bixon bixon; you can't speak no english"  LOL!  Too funny!  I'm dying here!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

our tree

This is our pitiful Charlie Brown Christmas tree.  And it's the Big Tree!  We have a tiny aqua SpongeBob tree (I don't have a picture of it).  I was determined to not bring much Christmas junk, and I didn't.  But this is pitiful.  It's tempting to buy a real tree - but we don't have enough ornaments!  I suppose we could make ornaments...  Ha-ha-ha-ha! 

It really doesn't feel Christmassy around here.  And the hot weather doesn't help matters.  But people are really making an effort to do it right.  Soon we are going to have to make that drive around town to look at lights.

And so it begins... one of my toes is hurting.  From walking.  I've been walking all this time, not one squeak of complaint from my feet.  ppfffffftttt.  I'm such a hypochondriac.  Is that even the right term for it??  I'm a weenie.  An excuse maker.   Whatevuh.

What am I doing right now?  I'm waiting for butter to soften.  LOL!  About as thrilling as watching paint dry.  I'm going to attempt to make buckeyes.  Those chocolate dipped peanut butter balls.  Just a little something to give the neighbors and mailman.  If they survive the night. 

Monday, December 18, 2006

up in the air

I'm still up in the air about it. 

Okay, so I've been thinking about the why.  Who cares about the why.  I can think of a thousand reasons that it's a good thing to do, but I haven't really prayed about it yet.  So it doesn't matter what I come up with.  I have time though.  I'm going to continue walking because that's what I do anyway.  I'm sorry if that sounds short and rude.  I don't mean it to.  I had typed in a whole bunch of stuff, but it just kept going on and on and got on my nerves.  If it gets on *my* nerves, then imagine how you will feel!

To answer lanurse's question - Gary would not do it with me.  He hates walking.  :-D

And to answer your other question, about the fills.  They don't hurt.  At least not if the port is where you are numb.  The expanders have ports built in.  The doctor has this little magnetic device that he uses to locate the port and mark the spot with his pen.  X marks the spot!  The little needle is connected to a tube which connects to the syringe (the huge syringe!).  There is a tubing system where they can draw the saline from the bag, do the fill, and then draw again, all without much trouble.

Anyway, can you believe Christmas is next week??  Are you done shopping and wrapping?  I finally found the perfect gift for my DH!  He's so hard to shop for.  I have to finish up the boys, do some candy making and get the last minute stocking stuffers.  I've already bought a ham for Christmas eve.  I like to do a nice breakfast for christmas day.  So I need to hunt for recipes.  Busy, busy, busy!!  But it's a good busy.  :-)

Sunday, December 17, 2006

okay, just what am I thinking??!!

I'm seriously toying with an idea that frankly, scares me.

Let me preface this with a little tidbit about me.  I'm not athletic.  I'm not the sporty kind.  I don't like to sweat and I have no natural balance or rhythm.  I'm sooooo unlike my husband.

But, in order to live this life, you have got to find a way to move your body.  There are 3 things that I do with a semblance of pleasure.  I walk, I do step aerobics, and I like to lift.  I haven't done the last two in quite a while.

My husband is responsible for planting the idea in my head.  He actually suggested it several weeks ago.  The idea is....... drumroll please.........

to walk the Honolulu Marathon.

It's just walking.  Just walking.  Walking.  Walking for 26.2 miles!  Walking.  I can do it.  Can't I?

I think it would be nice to do it in a decent timeframe.  Ya know?  I am soooo out of shape.  I've been walking every day since a few days after my surgery.   Which, of course is now much longer and faster than those first few weeks.  I've been thinking about my reconstruction.  I should be through with fills by February, have a 6 week wait before the exchange surgery, so that's prolly around May (new boobies for my b-day!) and a few weeks of recovery.  I can start ramping up my walking now, practice walking faster or longer.  Take the recovery time and then really start the training.  The training schedules I've seen are for 24 weeks.  The marathon is in December.  I think the timing works.

I broached the subject with Gary, and he said "I think it's a good idea".

It's a big committment, timewise.  Gary has run two marathons.  White Rock and the Honolulu marathons.  He's a runner because he's in the army, but he's not a good runner.  He's not built for it.  He's built for hockey, football or catcher.  He's got huge legs.  Naturally muscular - his sister is like this too.  It's genetic.  He never lifts because his thighs are gargantuan and he has a hard enough time finding pants to fit.  Lifting would make them even bigger!  BUT he'll never run a marathon again.  He's destroyed his ACL.  Thank the Lord for his huge thighs.  Those thighs are keeping him from going under the knife.  He's strong enough to function quite normally.

I remember how exciting it was to cheer him on at White Rock.  I couldn't make the Honolulu - but I've been grilling him about water stations and port o potties.  Yes, I'm more worried about going potty and being hydrated than actually walking.  Ignorance is bliss. 

Today we saw an old man walking on the sidewalk all hunched over and he said that's how I'll be walking the day after.  :-)  Oy.  Will I really follow through??  I'm really not good at following through when there is something like this that is long term.

It's late and I'm trying to catch this episode of Top Chef.  I'll post tomorrow about the Why I'm considering this... (notice the lack of committment LOL)

Saturday, December 16, 2006

my tangerine tree

As you can see, it's loaded.  It's been like that ever since we moved here.  I thought they were limes and was so excited about the prospect of making "key" lime pie.  But they are starting to turn orange.  Tangerines.  If you like tangerines, they are good.  I'm not a tang. fan.  I've got a neighbor who loves them, so I told her she can have all she wants for free.  Keeps the bees away.  She said the kids that lived here before us sold them for a quarter each!  LOL!

BTW, today I saw the lady that has been supplying us with avacados.  (even though the season is now over)  I made sure I thanked her for her wonderful avacados - hopefully ensuring I will get to partake in next year's crop.  I wonder if I can plant an avacado seed...  LOL!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Me, me, me

I got this survey from Kim


Part 1: The Birth of You

Were you a planned baby?:
Yes, but no more after me...LOL!

Were you the first?:
Nope, I'm da baby.

Who was present at your birth?:
Probably just mom and the hospital staff.  This was the "olden days".

Were your parents married when you were born?:

What is your birthdate?
May 7, 1965

Part 2: The Family

Are you parents married or divorced?
Married for 45 years!

An only child?:
No, but it wouldn't have hurt to have a few more sibs.

If you have siblings are you oldest, middle, or youngest?:
The baby.  The annoying little sister, in love with all my brothers friends.  *sigh*

What are your sibling's names?:
Jim III  (we still call him Jimmy, but he wants to be called Jim)

Which parent do you get along with best?:
I refuse to answer on the grounds that it may incriminate me!!  Let's just say my mom is like me and my dad is a peacemaker at heart.

What do you fight about?
silly things.  usually when I feel someone is<FONTFACE="COMIC MS? Sans> trying to run my life...

Do you have step parents?:

Part 3: The Friends

Do you have more than one best friend?

What do you like to do when you are together?
Unfortunately, all my good friends are long distance...We move waaaay too much and this is a touchy subject for me

Do you share the same interests?:

Which friend can you tell anything to?:
I have a group of cyber friends, it's a private group, but not really anyone IRL - I tell my mom a lot

Part 4: Your Personality

How high/low is your self esteem?:
I esteem myself well in general, except when it comes to looks particularly

Do you get depressed about things easily?:

Are you an extrovert (outgoing) or an introvert (reserved)?:
  I'm an introvert - an open book if you know me, but it's hard to break through that invisible barrier into intimacy

Are you happy?:

Do you live life to the fullest?:
On occassion - so that would be a no.

Part 5: Appearance

Are you comfortable with the way you look?:
Yes and No.  If I were to have something fixed, I wouldn't be able to choose just one thing.  So it's a real kick in the rear to have to have my boobs worked on - I was relatively satisfied with them.  But yes because I really don't think about my appearance beyond the initial getting ready in the a.m. - just as long as it's okay.

Describe your hair?
Not thick enough, naturally curly, meaning straight in back, wavy in parts, frizzy at the temples and curly elsewhere.  Mousy brown with lots of gray (and I must mention the gray has a mind of it's own, kinda wiry and sticking out at odd angles), and a gray streak in front, which I like.

How do you dress?
casual-comfortable - but in Hawaii, I dress in shorts and t-shirts

Part 6: The Past

Were you a strange child?:
No.  Not according to me.  :-)

What did you used to love that you no longer do?
Pintos (the car), Tom Cruise - but otherwise, I'm pretty faithful

Do you have the same friends?:
I still keep in touch with some of my high school friends.  The last reunion firmed that up, and having them on my bc prayer team firmed that up too.

Was there anything in your past that was traumatizing?
No.  The ideal Leave-It-To-Beaver childhood.  I've been very blessed. 

Part 7: The Future

What is your ambition?
To be the mom that my kids need, and to always be willing and eager to do what God wants me to do.

Are you scared of growing old?:

Do you want to get married?:
I am married!

Part 8: The Outdoors

Do you prefer indoors or outdoors?:
I'm an indoor body, but I do love that we can eat every single meal outdoors!  And I love *weather*!  I just don't want to be hot or cold!

Favorite Season:
Fall - relief from the heat and anticipating the holidays

Do you like walking in the rain?:
I hope so - I've been caught in the rain at least 4 days in the past week and a half.  As long as I have a hat and don't have to worry about my hair frizzing.

Part 9: Food

Are you a vegetarian?:
Absolutely not.  Me like me some meat.  But I am cutting back on the red meats and portions.

What is your favorite food?:
I'm on a guacamole kick, and fresh pineapple kick - I love brownies and addictive spicy hot foods - like Mexican.

What food makes you want to gag?
eggplant, liver

What is your favorite dessert?:
Fudge, well, it's my favorite sweet

What is your favorite restaurant?:
I like me some Bojangles!  I have favorites in every town we've lived - except here...

Are you a fussy eater?
Not in my opinion, but in my mom's opinion.

Part 10: Relationships and Love

Are you single or taken?:

If taken who is the lucky guy/girl?:

Do you think love is the best feeling in the world?:
Hmmm.... I guess so, never thought about it.  (obviously I take it for granted)

Do you believe in love at first sight?:
  maybe for others.  Sure, why not?

Part 11: Experiences

What was one of your greatest experiences?:
I've had several really great experiences, but that ultrasound telling me that we had twins ("did I tell you two or three?") and that pregnancy was great.

What was one of the worst?
miscarrying just a couple of days after getting a positive pg from my IVF.

Have you ever done drugs?

Have you ever thought you were going to die?:
No, even though I've faced death a couple of times now.

So now you have learned a lil more about me....if you do this in your own blog send me back a link please!


I want to amend the "love at first sight" answer.  I absolutely fell in love at the first sight of my babies.  Of course, I loved them already, but my goodness, I was head over heels!  As far as my DH is concerned, I absolutely was smitten, he is good looking, but what got my heart was I met him initially at the college orientation dance and he memorized my address and wrote me a 4 page letter just a few days later.  And he wrote me all summer.  Then we started dating/hanging out when school started.  Letters.  That's what snagged me.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

despite my motherly instincts...

I have signed the boys up for another session of martial arts.  Oh boy.

Sent a package via UPS today.  Whatever you do, find a way to send your packages by the post office!!  I do believe I paid more than I did for the gifts I was shipping...

I believe that the time spent standing in line is worth me being a SAHM!  I'm going to be doing that multiple times until I get these gifts all mailed.  I'm proud to say that I've got all the gifts for the extended family bought and wrapped.  Two boxes mailed and another set boxed up.  Three more boxes to find, because I'm not going to UPS again!

Been to McDonald's lately??  We went this weekend and the boys got IZ toys.  Da-duh-da-da-duh da da.  Recognize the tune?  AUGHHHH!  That silly tune goes through my head all the time.  That silly thing sings it at least 7 times in a row.  And we were surrounded by IZ's singing their silly little heads off at McD's!  It was hilarious.

I got stung by a jellyfish this morning.  While walking on the beach, it was littered with little man o wars, and my big toe got wrapped up in a tentacle.  (are they called tentacles?)  My toe didn't get stung, curiously, but a string slapped my ankle on my other foot, and that stung.  The little thing was only about 1 1/2 in. but they have really long, stubborn stingy strings/tentacles/whatever.  It stopped stinging by the time I got home.

Monday, December 11, 2006

2nd fill today

Woo-hoo!  It's at least an A cup now!  The cleavage on the one side is soooo much better than on the natural side.   I can see it now.  One perky 16 year old boob, one droopy 41 year old boob.  Lovely.  Who cares?  As long as *something* is in the bra, ya know?  I actually walked out of the hospital with the fake stuffing in my purse.  Ya-hoo!  They put in another 100 cc's.  So I have 200cc's total.  They use a giant syringe.  I got a look at that syringe, and if my eyes didn't decieve me, 50 cc's is 2 ounces.  So I've got a cup of saline so far.

I tried to finish up the christmas shopping for the extended family today.  By the end of the day (just a couple of hours is all I have), I was annoyed.  I was annoyed at the hand that was squashing down on my booblet.  At least that's what it felt like.  I came home and found a more comfortable bra. 

I spent all afternoon wrapping gifts yesterday, and I'll finish up today's.  Then I've got to box it all up and get it in the mail!  There's no way it's gonna make it on time for Christmas.

Do you ever feel like there's just not enough time in the day??  (and what am I doing on the computer??)

And along all this, I've got to take the boys on a grocery shopping trip for school and we've got to create a snack using whole grains - for both of them.

Saturday, December 9, 2006

the playground and cards...

Note to self: next year, photo cards from Kodak or somewhere like that. 

Today, in the mail, I got the chosen one, the christmas photos that I ordered.  So I started working on the cards.  This is supposed to be the easy, fun part.  I bought 3 packs of make-your-own photo cards from Walmart, on sale, last year.  Just slap on the photo, add the embellishments that they provide and wah-la!  Instant cute Christmas card.  Except, you've still got to do the insides and addresses.  Which is enough as it is, without having to make the cards.  (but it's so hard to resist the double whammy of bargain and craft item)  So, to make it even more challenging, I cannot find my address database.  The one I use every year to print out mailing labels.  Augh!  The thought of starting from scratch is terrifying.  I'm going to forget someone.

I could just wait and sent only to those that have sent me a card...    Evil, I know, but I've done it before....  not intentionally, mind you.

Oh, I have decided to NOT include a family letter or note of some sort indicating the difficulties of this year.  I am going to put in a Christmas appropriate scripture, the words "Mele Kalikimaka" which is Hawaiian for Merry Christmas and I found a pink ribbon clipart that I will put somewhere on the inside of the card, in a small, unobtrusive way.  I will actually sign the card.  LOL!

The playground saga continues.  Today I saw Jake and Ryan once again backed up to the fence, this time on the very far side of the playground, by the big boys.  J&R both confirmed that the boys came after them while they were minding their own business.   The boys took off like lightening when they saw us coming (the moms).  I can't imagine it, but I think they thought we wouldn't be paying attention.  Anyway, to further confirm that Jake and Ryan are like night and day, when we were walking towards each other, Ryan was bawling and Jake was smiling.  LOL!  Ryan has such a tender heart and Jake is just oblivious.  He has no fear because he is not living in reality.  :-)  God's got something special in mind for that child.  According to him, he just wants to be their friend.  Bless that child.  You gotta love him.  And Ryan, it's so cute how when he sees Jake getting involved with these kids he goes over to intervene.  Even though he is scared to death.  My brave boy.  I just love seeing the brotherly love. 

Excuse me while I'm verklempt.

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, December 7, 2006

nothing much...

Just wanted to check in.  I'm still here and don't have any words of wisdom or wit.  I've been busy Christmas shopping.

I'm not sure why, but every time I go out, I have encounters with the less pleasant aspects of this place.  Today, it was when I was crossing the street.  I was crossing at a crosswalk, but not at a light.  A man was crossing with me.  At first glance, he seemed normal.  Well, Hawaii normal.  If this were a metropolitan city, maybe not.  Casual, yea scruffy, dressing is normal here.  So we're in the median and the man sticks his foot into the road expecting the cars to stop.  Thank goodness he hesitated and watched the cars because one stopped and the other didn't.  So he screamed, and I mean screamed loudly, the F word.  I just scuttled across with my head down mumbling, calm down, calm down.  After we get across and I've walked a few steps in the opposite direction he says, sorry lady.  Yeah, right.  You kiss your mama with that filthy mouth?  Crazy dude.

Needless to say, that spoiled the fun of Christmas shopping.

Went into Lanikai Juice, but had no LOST sightings.  There is a smoothie chain here called Jamba Juice.  It's all over this island.  So I bought gift certificates for the teachers.

A little playground incident today.  I saw Jake and two bigger kids backed up to the fence.  I saw Ryan head over and ask what was going on.  (little brother protector)  So I hustled over there and Susan, my friend who is the mom of Patrick, Jake and Ryan's playmate, she hustled over too to deal with the big kids.  (good to have a New Yorker mom who has a voice that carries!)  Snatched my boys and got them calmed down and got them to play in closer proximity to us.  It seems the big boys were chasing Jake, but Jake had been trying to mess with them.  Jake told me he wanted to be their friend.  I told him that he was like a little pesky brother.  They don't want to play with little kids.  These guys are 6th graders.  Mine are 2nd graders.  I'll tell Gary about it and we'll discuss it over supper.  Boys!  I really don't know how to handle them!

Saturday, December 2, 2006


The other day I saw Cheryl Crowe (C or S?) on Oprah.  I'm not a fan, because I don't listen to that kind of music, but she said something that just resounded with me.  Sheryl/ Cheryl (I think the S looks right) had been diagnosed with breast cancer.  Just in case you didn't know.  She had a lumpectomy and radiation.  And she told Oprah that she wanted to remember every moment of it.  Because it's one of those refining events in your life.  I so agree.  I know I wanted to remember everything and be very present and aware of the moment.  I knew it was a refining event in my life too.  I remember sitting in my recliner, after my big surgery, consciously reviewing the day, feeling what I was feeling and just absorbing it all.  I'm not one for remembering details.  In fact, I would have to go check the calendar in order to tell you the day that I got the C news.  But I clearly remember every moment of that meeting.  I remember my emotions, my thoughts, the doctor and her demeanor.  I don't remember what I was wearing.  Or what I ate that day, or what I listened to in the car.

I like that Sheryl said it was a refining event.  Not defining.  Infertility doesn't define me, being a twin mom doesn't define me and this cancer sure doesn't define me.  But these events have worked hard at bringing out the bad and improving the good.  Important things have become more clear and focused.

Zech. 13:9 "This third I will bring into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like goldThey will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, "They are my people," and they will say, "The Lord is our God."'

Ps. 66: 8-12 "Praise our God, O peoples, let the sound of his praise be heard; he has preserved our lives and kept our feet from slipping.  For you, O God, tested us; you refined us like silver.  You brought us into prison and laid burdens on our backs.  You let men ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance."

Silver, gold, abundance.  These are good things.  Really, really good things.

Now, if I could just get all the impurities out the FIRST time.  Multiple firings = slow learner.  LOL!

Friday, December 1, 2006

boy oh boy

Being a mom is gonna kill me long before cancer does!  I swear it took Jake 3 hours to do one page of math homework.  Not that he had a hard time doing it.  He had a hard time Not Daydreaming.  I even put him in a separate room with no distractions.  And when he was finally done, it was unreadable.  I made him rewrite everything on a clean sheet of paper.  The sloppiness and distractions are just beyond my ability as a parent, and it seems it's beyond the ability of his teacher.  Who knows?  She doesn't communicate with me!  So he was banned from t.v. or games.  He had to stay in his room tonight.  Which he didn't mind.  Nothing to interrupt his daydreaming.  LOL!  He read to his hearts content.  About physics experiments.  When I saw he was reading about quarks, I just had to walk away quietly.  Oh mercy.  I can see it now.  He's going to be like that nutty guy on the show Numbers.  Really quirky, yet smart.

At the park today I saw my future, across the street.  There was a gaggle of teenage boys.  Creating.  Creating what, I don't know.  Trouble.  They had fashioned a large bubble out of clear plastic, duct tape and the air blower thing from their rooftop Santa.  Then they fashioned a tube coming out of the side.  For them to crawl in and out of the thing!  Three of them were inside at one point.  I could see the headlines...  Anyway, my friend Susan said that she had seen the boys earlier in the middle of the street.  One on a bike with a shopping cart tied to it.  And a boy standing on the back of the shopping cart riding it!  In traffic!  Later on the basket half of the cart came out with what looked like sled runners fixed to the bottom and they were heading up the street with this homemade sled.  I guess they were going to find a grassy hill to slide down.


This is my future in less than 10 years!  I will either be totally gray or bald by then. 


Somehow God thought this was a good match.  LOL!  Proof He has a sense of humor.

Life is definitely more interesting after we had these boys.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

this is hilarious...

I saw this referenced on another blog.  Warning, you've got to have a good sense of humor and take it as just that - a joke (goodness knows, I hope it's a joke! LOL).  I think my fellow BC sistas will enjoy it

Brrrrr, it's chilly

I know you're laughing your heiney off at me.  And rightly so.  I've complained nonstop since we've moved here about how hot it is.  Well,it's a whopping 69 degrees.  Brrrrr.  Cold front.

I'm sitting here kinda watching this Christmas special.  Christina Aguilera just sang with Sasha Cohen skating.  Sasha, the olympic medalist, out there skating her heart out, not knowing that C.A. got most of the camera time, just standing there singing.  Ugh.

snail count: 3

gas on post: $2.63

Gary flew out to the Big Island today for that Stryker stuff.  He'll be back later tonight.  *sigh*  I miss him.  He had to get up at 3:30 am. just to catch the flight today, so I haven't seen him since last night.

Okay, so I have a confession.  I totally think I've got some sort of mental problem.  I know I've promised to not talk about the "non diet" - but here's proof that I'm crazy.  It's totally not a diet.  Because I've got puh-lenty to eat and tasty food too.  But not the sugars and the salties (which I love).  So tonight, after dinner (I hadn't had a "bad" food all day) I remembered that there was about 1 1/2 inches of cookie dough (Pillsbury sugar cookie dough in the stick form) left in the fridge.  Not really enough to cook - because we would all have to wrestle over who gets the cookie.  LOL!  Anyway, I couldn't get that thought out of my head.

I can't just throw it away, so...

I ate it. 

Not only ate it, I SNUCK it. 

I stealthily crept to the fridge, rummaged around like I was searching for something (and I was!) and hid it behind my back and slunk to the most private place to eat it. 

The thought running through my head? 

I gotta eat it before 9:30.  That's when Gary gets home. 

Gotta hide it from Jake because he's been asking to eat cookie dough.  (and I piously tell him "no!"  it's bad for you)

I'm so BAAAAADDDDD!!  Am I the only one like this???  Are there people out there who can actually let a good food go?  Yes, I know there are.  You are the ones who save your Halloween candy and eat only 1 piece a day.  And then you are able to throw it away when you get "tired" of it.  Not me.  No.  Gotta eat it all in a day or two.  And then rummage for more.  If you see a 41 year old woman going door to door in a costume holding a pillow case, that'd be me.

Do you know that I STILL have some green bean casserole in the fridge?  I just can't throw it out because it's so good and I might need to eat it.  It must be growing mold by now... No, I will not eat moldy food.  I'm not that bad.  :-)

My real problem is thinking that candy and chips and junk are good food.  LOL!  Barbarian.  I need to develop aristocratic taste buds.

See??  I'm sick.  Look at how much journal I've devoted to food...

Maybe I'll go back to thinking about snails.  And how cold it is.  Must be winter.  :-)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Jake's interesting prayer

It went something like this: Dear God, I give my whole life to you.  I will tell everyone about Jesus.

Well, he said a lot more than that, in a kid's way, but this was the basic jist.  So afterwards I asked him, what will you tell people about Jesus.  And he said, that he's the only God in the universe.  And I said, and maybe tell them about God, like how he loves us?  And he said yeah.  I wonder if I've got a little missionary on my hands.  He marched up to me a few years ago and prayed the prayer of salvation, just spontaneously.  This prayer he prayed the other night seems spontaneous too.  Because while he was saying it I was reviewing in my mind the devotional we had just done and the sermon we sat through that morning to try to figure out what sparked this. I dunno.  Sometimes Jake will absorb something (and you would swear he's not listening) and days later bring it up.  I'm thinking he's been stewing on this for a while.

I made pizza tonight.  Tried to make a whole wheat crust.  Tried. *sigh*  That's meal #2, in a row, that I busted my heiney on, and ruined.  Well, I ate it.  Fortunately, I had bought a frozen pizza for Gary and the boys.

I have found an online support group for my new eating efforts, so I won't regale you with every last boring bite of food I've eaten and every mile I've walked.  Yes, I hear your sigh of relief.  LOL!  Yet I do want to shout to these people - stop being so rigid!!  It's okay if the yogurt has 7 grams of sugar instead of the 4 grams of sugar suggested.  You don't have to use olives if you don't like olives.  Quit counting calories!!

We'll see if I don't get kicked off soon enough because I've gone all kamikaze.  :-D


Tuesday, November 28, 2006

great minds think alike

I chose #2 also!!  Hooray!  And your prize is.... a brand new car!!  Just kidding.  ;-)

I'm so exhausted.  This was NOT the week to start this new "diet".  I *tried* to cook the salmon, but something has happened to our grill.  I think the turkey killed it.  It has fire, a little bit - the temp won't go over 300 degrees.  So, needless to say, the salmon didn't cook.  I had to toss it.  What a waste!  And then, I had to cook a large pot of soup to eat throughout the week.  Plus I had to shop around for some ingredients I couldn't find.  I'm going to have to make a pizza crust for tomorrow, since I can't find a whole grain premade crust.  I can do it, but it's just more work.

On top of it all, this is a bad week for Gary at work.  The whole Stryker thing.  The native Hawaiians are protesting the Army training troops on the Stryker.  (a tank I think)  Something about protecting the environment.  This thing has been in the works for years, it's been through the courts already, all the studies have been done. The native Hawaiians want the military presence gone - so there is nothing acceptable to them.  And apparantly this whole thing came to a screeching halt because of politics.  Election year and all.  Playing both sides of the fence.  Ugh.  So Gary has been dragged into it.  BTW, Gary is a JAG.  An Army lawyer.  He said his part will be done this week.  I won't hold my breath.  I just hope it doesn't go into the holidays.  :-(

Today I had my first fill.  They put 100 cc's in!  More than I thought they would, but it didn't make a whole lot of difference.  I guess I'm expecting too much.  But I do see a difference.  I still have a lot of excess skin, so maybe I won't feel the stretching until another fill or two.  I feel great.  No pain or tightness.  It is raised more in the center (the cleavage area), which bothers me a little because my skin is sensitive there.  And of course I'm paranoid that it's too close to the center (making a uni-boob), and I'm paranoid that it's too low because my bra band goes right over it - it has from the beginning.  I"m sure when the hard expander comes out  and the soft implant goes in all will be fine.

My booblet.  I can't wait to show Gary, if only he'll get home sometime!!

Monday, November 27, 2006

photo shoot and diets and rumors

Yesterday we went out in our annual desperate attempt to get the perfect photo for the Christmas card.  These three photos are our favorites.  Maybe I should do a poll, because we all have different opinions on which one is the best.  Which is your favorite?  BTW, Ryan has his hand on top of Jake's head in picture #3.

I took at least 25 pictures.  It's so hard to get children to look into the camera, with a nice smile, at the same time.  If I could cut and paste different parts of different pictures together, I could come up with a stunning photo.  Kids!  LOL!  Gotta love 'em.  *sigh*

Now that I've chosen (I'll reveal which one in my next post), I need to work on the inscription.  We used to send out christmas letters a long time ago, and then that went down to long notes scrawled into friend's cards, then to nice religious cards with a photo inserted, and finally to the impersonal photo card.  After the year we've had, I just don't think the impersonal photo card is the way to go.  Not everyone on my card list knows that I had breast cancer (can I say it in the past tense yet?? had).  I don't want to go the whole letter route, and I'm not clever enough to write a poem...  Should I even mention my bc?  Ultimately, I just want to lift up God and express what he's done for me.  I need to pray about it and noodle.  I just wish I didn't feel the time crunch.  Mail is so slow from here.

There are rumors swirling that an earthquake and tsunami has been predicted, so they've had to put messages across the top of the tv screen.  Earthquakes are not predictable...  I guess people are scared because there was another aftershock yesterday.

I'm reading the Oz and Roizen book, You on a Diet.  These are the doctors that Oprah has on and they show organs, diseased and normal.  Anyway, I'm liking it.  Well, I don't like the writing style, it's maddening, but I like that I'm being told how the body works and what happens to the foods you eat, the chemical interactions going on and all that good stuff.  I like to know WHY high fructose corn syrup is such a bad thing.  I think I rebel against all the nutritionists wagging their fingers at us saying "no, no,no" with no REAL explanations.  I'm going to try their two week menu plan.  I went to the store today and bought an unreal amount of fresh veggies and whole grain this that and the other.  I still don't have all that was on the list.  But I like that it's less a diet and more of a change it the quality of food you eat.  No low carbing - complex carbs instead.  Quality foods that trigger the satisfaction chemicals, instead of foods that sabotage you and makes you even more hungry.  Let the foods do the hard work.  Plus incorporate daily exercise.  Normal exercise.  I'm pretty good at that part, plus I'll modify to fit my current limitations.

This appeals to me a lot.  I always thought that I should be eating better quality food.  And I think that's why I liked the Dr. Phil plan, but let's face it, his was a DIET.  You can SAY it's a lifestyle, but at 1200 calories, it's a diet.  And I felt deprived.  Anyway, I digress from what I wanted to say.  I've been thinking ever since the BRCA testing came back pointing to the cause of my cancer most likely lifestyle.  Well, that's got to be my atrocious eating habits.  I have learned over the years that I just cannot get away with anything, and it includes my eating.  I am just too big for my body type.  I'm only 5' 3 1/2" tall and I have a small to medium bone size.  I can't say I'm big boned!  (although big hipped, and that comes by genes!)  I'm not brave enough to post my current weight.  Trust me, I"m not the 108 pounds I was when I got married 18 years ago.  Not even near.

It's late, I need to shut down.  I hope everyone had a lovely holiday weekend.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

my brave boys...

They both visited Santa, but only Jake allowed the picture.  Jake actually WANTED to visit Santa.  We had to coax Ryan, and even then Gary had to go with him.  This is a big deal in the Brock household.  It's been years since they've visited Santa.  They've never really liked any large characters.  All of their pictures with Santa are either crying babies or the look of terror on their faces.  I remember when we were living in Enterprise Alabama.  It was Easter.  After church we went to Po Folks restaurant.  All of a sudden a large bunny (aka The Easter Bunny) began making rounds.  You should have heard the wails when those boys spotted that poor innocent bunny.  Mr. Bunny had to circle the restaurant the other way.  Just long enough for us to pack up and pay our bill.  This was a little after their 2nd birthday.

Chuck E. Cheese.  You can forget that.  They love the place, but not the rat.  They don't even like the character rooms - thank goodness.  (I had a brief stint as a bus person at a CEC - in the beach boy room - ugh!).

We even cut a wide berth around McGruff the Crime Dogs that wander the mall.

No.  Disney is NOT in our future.  Busch Gardens was a great theme park to avoid all that character business.

Deep down, I think it is Ryan who is the most afraid.  And Jake just triggers off of him.  This is the first time Jake has displayed independence.  Yay!  He's growing up and becoming his own person.

Friday, November 24, 2006

there was an earthquake yesterday??

Supposedly it was an aftershock from the GREAT EARTHQUAKE OF OCTOBER 2006.  Somewhere in the 5 range of the ricter scale.  We didn't feel it.  At all.  Plus we didn't lose power.  Can you imagine the disaster if we had a statewide powerloss on Thanksgiving??  Oy!

Happy Thanksgiving weekend everyone.  I hope it was pleasant.  Ours was nice.  I slaved in the kitchen and underestimated the length of time the turkey would take, so everything else was ready except Tom Turkey. 

I learned a few things.  Start the turkey early, even if it's only a 3 pounder.  Don't use the recipe I used, because it was not condusive to gravy.  Don't use that snickers apple pie recipe again!  Plain apple pie would have been a lot better. (blasphemy, I know)  Snickers don't melt nicely.  Just gets gooey and clumpy.  Make the corn thing more often - it was good.  Plus I learned that the Top Chef site doesn't put the real recipes online.  I watched most of the marathon yesterday and saw one of them make the pizza and he made dough - the recipe calls for pita bread.  Plus the corn recipe was simple, and the judges DID rave about the layers of flavor.  They're holding back on us.  Ticks me off.

I am so thankful for my family, my good health, for God, for this country and all the things that we take for granted.  Like sight, two arms, two legs, everything pretty much functioning as it's supposed to.  I'm thankful that I get to eat every single meal outside on our lanai, and not getting attacked by mosquitos.  I'm thankful that I'm in a climate that I can exercise outdoors even in winter, which is so helpful to the recuperation.  I'm thankful that I have both my parents, who are still together - very leave it to beaver childhood, and adulthood.  I'm thankful for my two lovely little boys - I love them so much - and that I got both of them at once.  Otherwise, we'd only have one, and I couldn't begin to choose which one.  I'm thankful that God knew better than us.  Because I certainly had my doubts in that first year!!

Anyway, I could go on forever.

Life is sweet, even when it's sour.  :-)

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

my sweet angels LOL!

Aren't they so funny!  They just had to pose for the pictures.  Some Marines had helped out for our school's Turkey Trot fundraiser - and this was a bonus!

PS.  Shaving cream does a pretty good job getting it off.

my new bling bling

First, thank you Pam for the sparkly flag.  Love it!

Then I've just started looking for the pink ribbons and found two I'm trying out.  The sparkly one is fun.  The other one, I like what it says.  I feel like it represents our little BC sisterhood in J-land.  But the problem with this one is I can't get it bigger without distorting it.  So, I'll live with these for a little and continue searching.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

purple potato picture PPP

The pictures, as promised!

stuff and junk

I get so cracked up by two commercials.  The Geico caveman commercials and a newer commercial, I'm not even sure what the product is, a telephone I think, anyway, it's music related.  These two young guys are singing these ridiculously funny lyrics to "Rock the Casbah" - and they are serious!  It just tickles my funny bone.

I would like to add some interest to my journal here - so I'm going to comb the web for interesting images.  I wish we could customize these journals more - but I don't want to go to one of the more "popular" sites.  I think maybe I should add a nice pink BC ribbon, and maybe something tropical or an American flag or something.  Maybe something sparkly.  LOL!  If you know of good places to look, let me know!!

The President stopped in Hawaii on his way to Asia.  I told Gary to just give me a call if he was going to bring him home for supper...  LOL!

I baked Okinawan sweet potatoes yesterday for supper.  I took pictures and will post them soon.  They are PURPLE!  I really don't like sweet potatoes, but these are nice and mild.  We can also get a white variety of sweet potatoe (I don't know what it's called) which I like even better.  It's also mild, but moister.  Or at least that was my one experience.  :-)  Wait, let me run get my camera and upload the pics.

Monday, November 20, 2006

corn and scrapbooking

This is the top chef recipe.  It looks too simple to have gotten the rave on the show, so I'm skeptical.  Plus, the picture on the website has some things (garnish) on top - I wonder what it is.  Beneath the recipe I included the website that has the recipes by episode.  Not that I'd eat much of what they fix!! Ilan Hall Corn N' Bacon

2 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels
1/2 pound bacon
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Cook bacon in a medium skillet over medium heat until brown and crisp. Remove from skillet to a paper towel-lined plate. Let cool and break into medium pieces.
2. Add corn to skillet and cook over medium heat. When corn is tender, add bacon pieces. Stir well and season to taste.
3. Serve warm.

I haven't cooked regular bacon in a long time.  I usually buy the turkey bacon (we don't eat bacon much) and Gary grimaces.  So, since it's Thanksgiving, I bought the real thing.  It might tempt Gary to actually eat corn.  That man is a picky eater.  I don't understand how anyone doesn't like corn.  It's sweet!  I think, despite how skeptical I am of the simplicity of the recipe, I think I will like it.  There was a salad I used to get at Don Pablos that had skillet fried corn in it.  Yum.  I've always wanted to try that, but never had.  I don't fry foods any more... Thursday will be an exception. :-)

I'm on a new blood pressure medicine since the pharmacy doesn't regularly stock the one I've been on.  Right now I have a little headache, which I can't necessarily blame on the new meds -but you know how it is - every little thing becomes suspicious.  I've been taking my bp twice a day and it's been great, but I don't trust it's accuracy.  Again, paranoia. LOL!  Boy, I'm going to be a crotchety old lady when I get old.

I haven't done any scrapbooking in several months.  None.  I have time, but not the will. (obviously I'm spending all my creative time here on the pc!!)  Well, the pages I'm working on are from a 70's 80's party.  I can't remember the names of the people and neither can Gary!  LOL!  I hate getting stuck.  Anyway, I told Gary last week "what if I decided to stop scrapbooking?"  Yes, blasphemy, I know.  He wasn't happy because of all the stuff I have.  But I really don't have a lot compared to other people.  I'm really thinking about more of a way to just get the pictures into a book - safely.  With just a tiny bit of journaling and color.  Even more stark than the usual Creative Memories "style".  It's a good idea, but the problem is I haven't done my boys' first two years of life yet.  I want their baby album to be special.  I feel such pressure when it comes to the first year. The boys were so doggone cute, but the pictures were just awful.  That was before we had a digital camera.   yeh, I'll blame the camera.  LOL!  And I want to really document what it was like.  Infancy is special, but with twins, it's an adventure in survival.  I think it'll be the album that will be most interesting to our descendents, not some silly 70's/80's party by a bunch of soldiers and their spouses.  Oy.


Sunday, November 19, 2006

caring for orchids, t-day menu

Ever wonder how to care for orchids?  Well, I'm gonna give a little mini class.  Which is ludicrous when you think about it.  I have such a black thumb.  The fact these orchids have lived this long is amazing.  But when you hear how low maintenance they are...  Let's just see if this method really works in the long term.

Now, I've been told by the nurseries that you should water them lightly every 3 days and fertilize them every 3 months.  But my mom told me a different watering method.  Check it out, it's so easy:

Let the pot sit in a tub of water for 15 minutes once a week. 

I'm watering mine right now.  The pictures above were taken today.  I love, love, love my white orchid.  I got it during the trip to Chinatown.  It looks so good in our bedroom, which has a Japanese feel to it.  The purple one was a get well gift from Gary's office.  I got another purple orchid as a get well gift, but my mom left it in a windy area and it broke!

Keep your orchid inside, it doesn't need direct sunlight.


I went grocery shopping today and picked up my Turkey day food stuffs.  I'm excited.  I'm going to grill the turkey (a little 3 pound boneless turkey breast) using a recipe from my Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade Grilling cookbook.  Plus I'm going to make a corn and bacon recipe I got off of the current season of Top Chef.  It looks too easy.  But the judge Padma said it was cravable.  I can't resist that!  It was done on the TGIF challenge.  And for dessert I've got an apple pie recipe that uses mini snickers.  I got it from the M&M's website (I get their monthly mailings).  They all seemed like yummy fun recipes.  I like trying new easy things.

So here's my T-day menu:

Cinnamon-Spiced Turkey Breast with Cranberry-Orange Sauce



green bean casserole

Ilan's corn n'bacon

stovetop stuffing (I hate stuffing, so this is the best I can do)

jellied cranberry sauce out of the can

Hawaiian sweet rolls

sweet iced tea

sugar cookies (which may morph into snickerdoodles)

Pilgrim Pie

It's not too much, but it's a lot for just the 4 of us.  Yes, the sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie are glaringly missing.  The cook doesn't like these, so the cook isn't going to bother...  The troops aren't complaining.  :-)

Saturday, November 18, 2006

the latest boob news

It's new to me, maybe not everyone else.

Basically it says the FDA has approved the sales of silicone implants again.  They've been banned for 14 years. 

I'm not sure if I'd even have the opportunity to get them, would I want them?  I still have the images of the women who were on daytime talk tv making those cancer, lupus and migrating silicone claims.  Hard to shake a stigma once it's been asserted.

Of course, the whole implant issue is something I never took seriously because I never thought I'd get one (or two).  Never.  Never thought I'd get cancer either... 

Sure none of the studies have linked cancer or lupus to the implants, but, according to the article, they don't address what happens in the body when the silicone leaks into the body.  And implants do rupture.

All food for thought...

Friday, November 17, 2006

it was probably me you saw...

If you saw a one-boobed soccer mom type out walking in shorts, t-shirt, baseball cap and mp3 player - that was me.  I don 't know how other one boobed gals do it, but I just can't do the prosthesis thing (be it a sock or official form - yes, I usually use a folded up sock, it's the most comfortable for me LOL!) all the time - or even some of the time.  I only do it for the more "formal" occasions, like going to the mall or out to eat at McDonalds.  But wearing a bra tires me out. How ludicrous is that??  A jog bra is okay, but not with anything stuffed in it.  And I won't go out in public without a bra at all - heavens!!  I'm much too puritanical for that.  However, I have overcome my puritan ways to at least go without in the privacy of my own home.  Now, I'm overcoming some vanity by walking my boys to school with one side flat.  And going on my walks with one side flat.  I'm a bit unsure about the school thing.  I don't want to scare the kids or make my own children oddballs.  I wear big baggy tshirts that have logos emblazened on the front - so in my own mind it's enough camoflage that the casual person won't notice anything.  One thing I've learned in my time is that people don't look at you as much as you imagine.  But with kids, I may be deluding myself.  I dunno.

So, if you see me, or someone like me with 1 boob, or lopsided, square or flat boobs - just think charitable thoughts and pretend that nothing is out of the ordinary.  And I think it's safe to say that this goes for the bald gals too.  I bet sometimes your head is just too tender to wear that hot, scratchy thing - just to walk around the block or to the mailbox!!

I survived the tsunami

LOL!  Some tsunami.  I guess it wasn't as puny as the 18 inch tsunami that they had years ago.  But I'm not going to get excited over a 5 foot wave, when they get 20 ft. waves on the North Shore every year as normal.

In my imagination, I think I had a LOST star sighting today.  I was out walking in the neighborhood where Oprah's alleged house is.  So I'm on alert for stars.  And here goes this guy running past me.  He kinda looked like Matthew Fox from the rear.  Didn't get a good look at his face.  But, Matthew Fox is kinda of a ordinary looking guy, if you know what I mean.  He's not a Hurley or Syid.

I'm on the SBCV Disaster Relief email list, and I've been getting all these call outs for help.  When we first moved here, I tried to find something similar, but I haven't found it.  Of course, in my current condition, I really can't help...  But seeing the tornados in North Carolina really gets to ya.  And I see reports of the relief efforts here for after the earthquake.  I saw a news report on a nursing home on the Big Island.  The beds were lined up in rows in the cafeteria.  It will take months for them to get the rooms fixed.  We need to take care of our elderly!!  My heart aches for them.  That is no way to live.

My boys went to a friends house yesterday to swim.  It was the first "social" outing for me, in a long long time.  Nice, but tiring.  Thankfully, Gary knew he was getting home late, so I hadn't planned on cooking.

I don't know if I talked about Ryan's speech therapy yet.  He had it Wednesday.  The man said that Ryan wasn't able to hold his tongue to his teeth hardly at all.  He doesn't have good muscle control in his tongue.  So Ryan has "homework" to practice it.  Thankfully, Ryan is very willing to practice.  I'm not too surprised at this diagnosis since Ryan has had such a hard time with sensory, touching, fine motor skills, and oral defensiveness (gagging on textures and tempuratures) ever since he was a baby.  When he was very young, through Child Find, he got help from a Speech Therapist.  Child Find is funny.  They only want to help with things that pertain to school.  So they wouldn't help with his eating problems.  And I really had issues with the ST, she was very stern and unreasonable, IMO.  She was able to get Ryan to do the tongue side-to-side, so she declared him okay, just stubborn and maybe mom just overreacting and projecting (she didn't use the words, but I clearly got the vibe that I was doing this to him).  So anyway, back to current day - this ST says he DOES have problems moving his tongue side to side.  Vindication!  But it's not a sweet thing.  I don't WISH that Ryan has a problem.  I'm not GLAD.  Not at all.  But at least now we can get help.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

sweet sleep, where art thou?

I haven't slept very well the last few days.  <whine on> Our bed is a "hot" bed, it gets hot in the spot you lay, so you need to move a bit to get out of the hot spot.  Well, I can only sleep on my back, I have no where to go.  I sleep with a fan pointed on me and usually the sheet is kicked off, but I'm still hot.  Sweaty hot.  I yearn to sleep on my side.  Either side would be nice.  I used to flip and flop all night.  I love to sleep.  Being in one position is very hard for me.  It makes me antsy.  Last night at 3:30 I actually got up and laid in the recliner.  let me tell ya, the recliner isn't as comfortable when you aren't on Roxicet.  *sigh*  <whine off>  I'm sure this will pass.  I'm grateful to have a nice bed, roof over my head, and off pain meds.

GTTD (gross things they do)  Ryan picked up a water bottle he found at the playground and took a sip from it.  YUCK!  I was walking over to them because Jake had the bottle and was pouring the water out.  Just that quick Ryan grabbed the bottle and took the swig.  I did the mom grunt unh, unh, unh and he spit it right out.  I told him about all the germs, yadda yadda.  poor thing.  He was horrified.  (note: I always take two water bottles with me to the park, so he knew better)                    This is almost as bad as when he licked the drink machine at McDonalds.  Most boys you worry about the trips to the ER from broken bones.  This child is going to end up with Hepatitis.

The boys went to the arboretum today for a field trip.  Jake was excited to learn that chocolate comes from plants and Ryan was excited to see an earwig.  These boys are so different from each other.  You wouldn't know by personality that they are twins.  :-)

Got my hair cut today, the first in many months.  It's longer and shaggier than the picture you see.   I hate trying to find a new hairdresser.  I may not go back to him.  Yes, him.  I'm not wild about getting my hair cut by men.  I'm too intimidated.  I'm not an agressive person, so I need someone I feel I can say, you need to cut my bangs more.  He cut the back perfect.  As short as I want.  But I guess when I told him to "don't cutthe sides short because it's really curly there" he heard "don't cut the sides and front".  So my hair is the right length back, but barely trimmed elsewhere.  I guess the surfer look is just a little too prevalent here.  LOL!  My eyes are covered!  I need to see if my old hairdresser is still around.  Um, I'm going to stop complaining now.  Because I just remember I've got some dear J-Land friends who have no hair.  :-(  I'm terribly sorry for being insensitive. 

Boy, I need a new 'tude!  Lots of complaining.  Really, I'm not this unhappy in life.  I'm usually a pleasant person to be around.  :-)  Pork chop night!  That'll make anyone happy.  :-)

Monday, November 13, 2006

picking a pineapple

This is the information I got from the Dole Plantation.  It was a free demonstration, so I don't think I'm violating any copyright laws. :-)

1.  Look at the pineapple.  Don't worry too much about the color.  Golden or green, they are both delicious.  The girl said that the golden ones got more sun, they have a suntan.  What you do need to look for is uniformity on the size of the eyes.  (I think they are called eyes, you know what I mean)  If they are smaller on the top of the pineapple and larger on the bottom, then it is not full grown.  Don't choose that one.

2.  Give it a good sniff.  If you are drooling, then don't pick it!!  Trust me on this one.  If it has a deliciously yummy strong smell, then it's overripe.  Like an overripe banana.  Yuck!  It'll be too sweet, probably fermenting on the inside.  The pineapple should have a nice light fruity smell.  Light.

3.  Feel it up.  All over.  If it has squishy spot(s) then it's going bad.  Don't pick it.

Fresh pineapple is ono (hawaiian word for delicious).  Once you have fresh, you'll never eat canned again.  Once you have local fresh, then you'll just be sad, because you know what you've been missing and will have to save up hundreds of dollars to fly back here (or somewhere else tropical) to eat more!

I'm working on growing pineapples.  I've got two planted.  I'll post instructions and photos soon.  I hope my red pineapple photo didn't ruin the delightful surprise I had when I first saw how pineapples grew.  Who knew??

snail count today: 3

gas on post: $2.66, gas in town: $2.79

current temp on my lanai, in the shade, at noon: 84 degrees.

I'm 4 weeks post op today.  Today I walked to the beach and splashed in the water.  It's been at least a good 6 weeks since I've done that.  :-)  Ahhhh.

Thursday, November 9, 2006

well thank goodness

Reva's going to live!  I just couldn't believe they would knock off such a major and interesting character.  Now, what to do about Reva and Josh.  The last time they got married they said this was it.  If it doesn't work out, no more.  Yeah, right. 

Well, it looks like my last post didn't take.  Just as well, I'm sure it didn't have much in it. Except maybe the news about Ryan.  He is going to start speech therapy next week.  30 minutes after school on Tuesdays.  Yay!

Snail count: I got 9 today.  NINE!!  Egads.  Just how many are out there??  We've been throwing them out for at least a month.

Physical therapy.  You're going to laugh, but a woman's foo-foo fussing in the morning, trying to get all purdy is the perfect therapy.  I'm appalled at my lack of range of motion.  And all my getting ready activities challenge it.  Drying my hair, shaving my opposite arm pit, even shaving the bad armpit!  Just now I attempted to feel up my good side, you know, for lumps, not for kicks.  That's hard to do!  I find it difficult to cross my arm in front of my body.  It's also hard to stretch my arm straight up and straight forward.  Forget about extending it and going backwards.  I shudder to think that it'll require tearing a few more muscles.  Yeowch!  Housekeeping is good therapy too.  All the reaching required, laundry, putting away dishes, vacuuming...reaching for those snails...  LOL!  Yes, I do the recommended hand walk up the wall.  I do that multiple times throughout the day.  But that whole area on my chest is so still.  It doesn't move like the other side.  I stand naked in front of the mirror a lot, because I have to put on that fungus cream and I let myself air dry before and after.  So I get to see the differences between the sides.  It's not pretty, but it's me and I'm used to it.

The good news is I'm becoming slightly more used to wearing my sock in my bra.  I don't think I'm quite ready for that form yet.

Check out this link:  Apparantly she was on tv today.  She has documented her mastectomy and reconstruction with photographs, because she wasn't able to find such before hers and wanted others to see what to expect.  (did that make sense?)  It's quite brave and beautiful.  I think she looked a lot better that I do, but she wasn't perfect.  So it gives me hope, because her reconstruction is really good.

I'm still sad.  But I've only cried just a tiny bit, once today.  It was when I put on the shirt I'm wearing.  It's not a shirt I would have normally worn, before BC.  It's big and button up.  And it reminds me of recovery, which reminds me of my parents.  Oh yeah, twice.  They sent me an email today.  Gee.  I sound like some homesick teenage bride.  But this is good.  I've always wanted to be close to my family.  I'd rather feel the need to cry than feel nothing at all.

I'm procrastinating.  I need to go right now and get milk and garlic bread.  Because school lets out soon and I've vowed to never take the kids to the grocery store again.  LOL!

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

I'm sad

Mom and Dad are off to the airport.  I hate saying goodbye.  It's so quite around here.  Even if they weren't noisy people, their presence is gone.  I'm all boo-hooey now.  The boys are in bed now.  It was so sad to see them say goodbye.  I think they are old enough to really start feeling it.

sorry, I just had to go off and cry a bucket.  They've been here for 10 1/2 weeks.  We've lived here longer with them than without them.

sorry.  I had to cry another bucket.  I don't know why I'm having such a hard time.  I'm crying more now than when I was diagnosed with cancer.

This morning I had my last follow up appointment post surgery.  They are pleased that it looks like the redness is almost gone.  I have to take the cream for another week.  Just in case I guess.  I saw the plastic surgeon and told him my concerns.  He said I probably tore a muscle and that was normal.  He said it would happen probably 10 more times before all was said and done.  And that the fill process is all about tearing the muscle.  Yeowch!   He said that people start feeling worse at the 3 week mark because we are becoming more mobile.  So at least I was put at ease.    My fills will start in 3 more weeks, at the 6 week mark.  That will be right after Thanksgiving.  I'll have the start of my new booby for the new year.

Gary is back.  Now I'll go cry on his shoulder while he rolls his eyes and laughs at me.  :-)

Sunday, November 5, 2006

it moved, I think...

Saturday night I was sitting on the couch watching tv with my hands laced behind my head.  It's a good stretch for those of us who need it.  I brought my arms down and swear I felt it move.  the expander.  yeowch!  Now I'm so sensitive I can't wear that little boob form at all.  Or my jog bra.  I have an appointment in the early a.m. so we'll see what he says.

The thermometer on the lanai (in the shade) says 88degrees.  It's at least 10 degrees hotter in the house.  I'm not quite sure how I'll ever manage to get in the Christmas spirit with these temperatures!!

At church today I realized that I am too focused on myself and my chest.  I haven't been reading my Bible like I should.  Haven't been in fellowship with God.  And I can tell in my interactions with my family.  I can also tell that I'm at great danger of becoming a hermit.  It is such a hassle to go anywhere.  I feel like I have to present myself as normal.  A two boobed woman.  But it's not comfortable to do that.  I'd rather stay home and be braless.  It's not comfortable to ride in a car.  The roads here are horrendous, by the way.  LOL!  I wonder if I'll be brave enough to buck conformity.  :-D  That makes me giggle just thinking about it.

Did I mention it's hot??  I'm sitting here at the pc, with a fan pointed at me, I haven't exerted any real energy at all today, and I'm sweating.  It's beading up and pouring off my face.  What a whiner. 

Gary is out bowling with the boys.  It's for cubscouts.  Mom and dad leave tomorrow late night.  Aughh!  I'll be on my own again!  In charge of everything!!  Laundry, food, school, cleaning...

Friday, November 3, 2006

I'm really not mad at you, or feeling superior...

My ACS Reach for Recovery volunteer came today.  The first thing she noticed was me holding my arm out a bit.  LOL!  REally??  I'm doing that, still??  I don't even notice it anymore.  A lot of times I prop my fist on my hip, making me look angry or indignant.  It's a cross between habit and the lumpiness underneath my armpit.  Anyway, she brought me a bag of pamphlets and a bra and fiberfill form.  To add insult to injury, the form is too big (in my opinion).  My mom thinks its fine.  She says I need to tighten the strap on my natural side.  I say that it's natural to droop a bit and I need to take out some of the stuffing out of the form.  I guess I've always been used to the smaller side and just don't see bigger is better.  To me, bigger is fatter.  (hmmm, reflection on society these days??  the obsession with weight?)

Speaking of weight, I need to stop eating the boys' Halloween candy...  My mom made yet another DOUBLE batch of chocolate sauce.  We all had a serving for dessert last night and I put the rest in the freezer.  I'm tempted to dump it out when they leave.  Gary may kill me if I do...  I think we should have just melted all the boys chocolate and use that as a sauce.  That way it would have been a smaller, more managable amount and we would have gotten rid of a bulk of the halloween candy.  Two birds, one stone.

Speaking of chocolate, have you experienced a chocolate fountain yet??  Paula Dean has a new show and in the chocolate episode she sticks her tongue in the cascading chocolate.  She also pulls a man out of the audience and gets him to do it too.  I went to a women's thing at our church in VA and we had all kinds of goodies and there was a fountain there.  It's sooooo good.  Actually, my favorite things to drench were the strawberries and marshmallows.  Yeah, you think that marshmallows is such a kid choice, too sweet and all that.  but it really was yummy.

I was reading a friend's blog about her 2nd graders math being too hard for her and her husband to help him.  We had a similar incident this past week.  My mom was helping the boys with homework and gave up on the math.  I had to read the "family link" to understand what they wanted.  They can't just teach straight math, they have to teach 10 different methods to add numbers greater than 10.  I told my child how *I* learned, add the numbers from right to left carrying digits, and he called that "old school".  LOL!  He said that his teacher preferred the "old school" method too.  Whatever happened to simple memorization??  That is the fastest and most straightforward way to do math.  All these other "tricks" are just that, tricks.  It takes twice as long to estimate, then do the math.  Listen, I like math.  It's sorta easy and makes sense to me.  It is a straightforward thing.  And it's something where you build upon skills.  You have got to memorize the tables.  It's the best way.  It's the foundation for math.  I think all these tricks are for older kids.  Ones who are into the reasoning phase.

Do you think I found something I get passionate about??  LOL!

Monday and Tuesday are no school days.  Plus next Friday.  We are going to work in the two new child friendly movies.  The Santa Claus 3 and Flushed Away.  I love going to the movies.  I need a popcorn fix.  :-)

Thursday, November 2, 2006

still raining

And our lawn guys are here.  Yes, it seems you CAN mow and blow while it's raining.

Last night I decided to clean off the top of my dresser.  And I dusted.  (I'll wait while you pick yourself up off the floor)  My brand new, high quality, beautiful dresser is warping.  From all the moisture!!  The drawers are sticking.  Did I mention this was brand new?  Just 2 years old.  Beautiful.  It's taken me 16 years to find bedroom furniture I like, like enough to buy a whole set.  (I'm not a matching set kind of person, but I LOVED this stuff)  This dresser has a mirror on top which has been getting water droplets on it.  Last night I cleaned the mirror and noticed that several pictures had the water droplets and the WALL had water droplets.  Oh No!!  PLUS the couch feels wet.  Mildew is going to happen.  All of our furniture is going to be ruined.  Mildew popped up on our outdoor furniture just yesterday.  *waaaaah!*

If I had known we were going to move to Hawaii again, I would have never bought ANY of our newer furniture.  Never.

See, being a career military family, you learn to live with junk furniture.  You move too much to have anything nice.  I do know some families that buy new and sell with each move.  I don't know how they aren't in debt up to their eyeballs unless they have money outside of the soldier's career.  I bought this stuff thinking that we were only a couple of moves away from retirement.  I never dreamed we would have an overseas assignment.  (this is considered an overseas assignment)  That's what I get for thinking.

This island got 3-10 inches in a 24 hour period.  I'm quite sure our back yard got at least 8!!

I finally got my pink ribbon t-shirt.  I ordered it from and it's so cute!  It's pink and it has the ribbon on front and it says "hope and a future Jeremiah 29:11".  It's so me!

Wednesday, November 1, 2006


It's been raining, raining, raining, for days!  It briefly stopped to allow trick or treating last night.  Our backyard has a lot of concrete, so the water began pooling up and little waves from where the water was pouring off the lanai roof.  So anyway, today there was a mudslide onto the Pali Highway, right at the entrance of the tunnel.  Big news.  Anything that stops traffic is big news here, since the traffic is so horrific.  The Pali Highway is one of the 3 tunnels that links the windward side to the other side of the mountains.  The Pali connects Kailua and downtown.

I'm watching Oprah.  She's doing a show on pizza.  Yum!  Tomorrow she's doing a show with Dr. Oz.  Something about losing weight in 10 days.  I'll have to see that one.  Need it!!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

fun guy

Went in for the follow up yesterday and I'm still more red than they'd like to see.  The PS said I had a fungus.  So I have to use a cream.  The same kind of cream used to treat jock itch, athletes foot, ringworm...  Oh yeah.  Nice.  He also told me to make sure I work on my range of motion.  It needs work.  My shoulder is starting to hurt a little from holding my arm out.  Yes, I'm still holding it out.  I also have a hard time doing things with an inward motion with that arm.  The muscle gets very tight feeling.  Brushing my teeth tightens it up big time too.

Today I was thinking about how I needed to work on just simple tasks like that and I got sad because I wouldn't be able to do those PowerFlex type classes at gyms any more.  I hate exercise and I'm not athletic or coordinated, but that was one class that I really enjoyed.  I cringe at the thought of a push up or bench press.  Maybe someday I'll be back to it, but right now it's hard to imagine.  Yesterday, when everyone was gone, I got out some light barbells of mine.  3 pounders I believe.  I doubled up on my left arm and got some reps in.  I did some reps on my right bicep with the 3 pound but that's just too light, so I attempted to double that up.  Ummmm.  No way!  Guess what??  You use your chest muscle to hold up that weight!!

Today is Halloween. The boys are so excited.  The school does a costume parade and all the second graders made their costumes and dressed up like dalmations.  Very cute.   I took a couple of pictures, but they weren't very good.  We had a bit of a mix up with Ryan.  At the parent/teacher conference the teacher told me that Ryan was on the Halloween party planning comittee and he had volunteered relay games.  He had all these ideas.  Ms. Ryan was very excited because he is terribly shy in class and this was the first time he volunteered anything.  So I said that I would ask my DH and dad to see if anyone would help.  No one jumped at the idea, so I sent a note yesterday telling Ms. Ryan.  Well, Ms. Ryan saw me this morning at the parade and said Ryan was so excited about the games yadda yadda.  And I told her that I sent a note that no one would be able to help. She didn't get the note.   So she queried Ryan and he said  oh yeah, we've talked all about it. blah , blah, blah.  So I just sent dad out to help out.  It's rainy and the party is slated for 2 hours.  Way too long for a party at school.  I'm sure it'll be miserable, but I just can't do it.  My poor dad.  Oh well.  They're leaving next week, so it'll be a nice memory for Ryan.

I've been decorating the front porch.  I still need to do the cobwebs.  Ryan will be Darth Vader and Jake will be a Ninja.  I have bags and bags of candy waiting.  I've been good.  Haven't opened them up yet.  But then again, there is leftover birthday cake to keep me occupied.  LOL!

Edited to add Halloween pictures.

Monday, October 30, 2006

rumors and exercise

I've been meaning to post this for a while.  That house that I read in the paper that they said Oprah bought?  Well, I just have a hunch that she didn't buy that house.  Because, after the earthquake, I saw Oprah on tv stating the damage that happened to her Big Island house but said nothing about any other Hawaii house, if she indeed has another.  She referred to it as her Hawaii house.  Not one of her Hawaii houses. 

It's a theory.

So today I got tired of just sitting around doing nothing.  So I decided that I need to start doing some of these stretches in one of my books.  I lay down on the floor so I can do the thing where you clasp your hands behind your head and let your elbows wing out toward the ground.  Can't do it.  Even worse, I'm laying there on the floor and I can't get up.  Like a roach on it's back.  I don' t like the feeling in my "boob" when I'm laying flat or on my sides.  So rolling over to my side is not an option.  And my stomach muscles have disappeared.  What happened to them??  I could understand if I had the tram flap surgery, but I didn't.  Lordy, lordy.  Recovery is going to be a long slow process.  Obviously I've got a lot of work to do.  And I'm so grateful that I'm at the point that I can start on the recovery process.

Christmas shopping.  Gotta start thinking about it.  Less than 2 months.  Ack!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

sneezes and hiccups

Yesterday I sneezed once for the first time since surgery.  Good thing only once.  They usually come in 3's or 4's.  I thought I felt my expander literally jump off my chest and snap back in place.  But I do have a vivid imagination...

At the moment, I have hiccups.  This is not fun.  I need to go find my little purple pillow and smash it against my chest to keep my expander from leaping off and snapping back...

Who knew????



I'm so full...<groan>  We celebrated my dad's 70th birthday today, even though it's tomorrow.  We had steaks, baked potatoes, salad, rolls, and chocolate cake with chocolate ice cream.  I'm going to roll around the block with my DH in a few minutes.  <groan>

I'm a little upset.  Went out yesterday and bought a bra that is supposed to fool everyone.  Well, I put it on, with my t-shirt and showed DH and asked him "what do you think?".  He said, well, one is a little higher than the other, but no one will be able to tell because no one will be staring.  <thunk>  There goes my hopes, dashed.  I know that it's good enough to get by with, but I was expecting back flips.  Oh well.  THEN, I can't stand to have the bra on for very long.  I've got that hypersensitivity right under my non-existent boob.  Right where the crease would be.  :-(  This is VERY disappointing.  The bra I bought is not tight at all.  It is very comfortable, for about 5 minutes.

Whine over...

I called the American Cancer Society yesterday early morning.  They were going to get in touch with my Reach for Recovery volunteer to get them to call me to set up a home visit.  I haven't heard anything yet.  If my bra felt more comfortable, I would be planning to go to church tomorrow, so this would be more upsetting.  But as it is, I"m not planning to go to church, so I'm just a little upset. (impatient, maybe??  LOL!)  I know, I'm being a slacker not going to church.  If I had a home church, I would go, no problem.   Obviously, we need to make a decision.  Soon.  Anyway, last week mom found David Jeremiah on tv, so we watched that.  That was likely MUCH better preaching than anything we would be able to find on island.

Where is that rabbit??

Snail count this a.m.: 0 (zero)

Gary brought home a back scratcher for me yesterday.  :-)  *sigh*  That's true love, folks.


Friday, October 27, 2006


I'm tube free!!  Yeowch, did it hurt, but it's gone!!

My pathology came back good.  Clear margins.  They got all the cancer and didn't find anything else.  Good news!  Good news!  I'm so relieved!

My poor chest looks like hamburger meat.  The doctors pulled off the steri strips and agreed that the redness is from them.  But I'm still supposed to come in on Monday to make sure that was the only reason I'm so red.  He said I've got all these hills and valleys and dips because he tried to save as much skin as he could, but he not as much as he wanted because he had to cut around the excisional scar.  He said if I were not going to be reconstructed then he would have made me completely smooth and flat.  Sometimes I wish I had taken that route and just lived with stuffing myself.  He said that I would smooth out with fills and the plastic surgeon would smooth out the rest.  Nip/tuck. 

Thursday, October 26, 2006

note to caretakers...

I've got a little time to kill before my appointment today.  So I just wanted to put this out there.  Just a little note to whoever is a caretaker...  If the "patient" says it hurts, please listen and adjust.  Don't go into a diatribe about how stimulating it is (like you don't know what you are talking about), just make an adjustment and ask "is this better?"  It takes a LOT for the patient to say anything negative about care they are getting.  We are so very appreciative.  So if we say it hurts, you can bank that it HURTS!

Now, I'm sure the caretakers have a whole litany of things they'd like to say to us patients...