Friday, July 27, 2007

Weight Watchers

Bit the bullet and joined weight watchers online!  Let the games begin!

I'm starting right up.  I filled in my weight and height and stuff and they are allowing me 23 points a day, and as of lunch, I have only 4 points left!  LOL!  What?  Excuse me?

No wonder I'm overweight.

The first day is too early for me to be planning ahead, so I'm just eating like I normally do to see just how much I need to cut down and what equals how many points.  And trying not to lie.  The little points tracker thing is very easy to work and user friendly.  As a former GUI programmer, I'm quite pleased with it.

Is the end of July an odd time to start a diet?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Tammy Faye

I must live in a little bubble.  Gary had told me that Tammy Faye had died - but I just a few minutes ago saw a clip of her final interview with Larry King, the day before she died.  Her appearance was shocking - because I still picture her, in my mind, just as she was when she appeared on the PTL show.  That show was definitely a part of my childhood.  It was one of the few things that my mom watched on t.v.  It was certainly a unique time, put a stamp on the culture of the day.

I'm sure she's in heaven eating that hamburger that she craved - or better yet, sitting at the feet of Jesus having all her needs met just basking in Him.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

New Lost sighting!!

I'm so excited!!  We saw Hurley!!!!  We were waiting for a seat at Buzz's steakhouse in Kailua and Gary jabs me in the ribs and I look over right when Hurley (Jorge Garcia) walks right past me.  I'm talking less than a foot in front of me!  He's a big dude.  Well, yeah, you knew that - but he didn't look as heavy as he does on t.v.  Maybe he's slimmed down a bit. 

yeah, I'm a dork.  I get a little star struck.  I'm not the only one.  People were pointing and whispering.  Of course, the whole time we were eating we kept looking around the restaurant to see if there were any other stars there. 

Gary told me that Juliet - you know, the Other (who I don't trust) - is always at Lanikai beach and is very nice.  A co-worked of his lives in Lanikai and she plays with his kids "all the time".  I know that Lost doesn't come back until next year, but I wonder when they start filming it?  I kinda hope to see Harrison Ford - but they are shooting that new Indiana Jones on the Big Island, I think.  Someone told me last night that they saw  (or thought they saw) Cameron Diaz at the Safeway, with a baseball cap and sunglasses on.  But it's not unusual to see size 0 blondes here.  Coulda been anyone.

Friday, July 20, 2007

school supplies are bought

we are almost ready for school.  We spent almost $100 yesterday at Walmart, and we already had stuff!  Supplies have a tendancy to run out on the island - not a situation you run into on the mainland.  School starts Aug. 1.  And we've been packing in the fun.

Nothing planned.  But we've been busy every day.  Someone will call up and say, let's meet and the beach or come over to our house to swim, or can I bring so and so over to play with your boys.  Yes, it's okay to invite your kids over as long as one of the options is that we can come over at a later date to swim.  LOL! 

It's been a surprising week - just to have this happen.  I think it's a sign that I have made friends and my boys have made friends and we are settled. 

Just in time to move again, I'm sure.  LOL!

Just to rub it in a little, we spent 3 1/2 hours at Waikiki the other day.  Never saw the beach.  Spent the whole time at the pool.  (that's kids for ya, they would spend all day at a pool that is just feet from a world class beach)  We met friends, and the older son and husband of her took surfing lessons.  They said it was well worth it.  They got a 2 hour lesson for $45.  Quite a deal. 

Date night tonight!  Yay!  We don't have anything planned.  I guess I ought to go wash my face, put on makeup and iron something.

Oh, the tv just did a little blurb on Harry Potter.  Now, I've only read one book and happened to see a movie because it was on t.v.  I'm not one of the die-hard fans.  So I just view all this circumspectly.  Anyway, I was reading in the paper, they did a Q&A with people on the street and one girl, about 15, said "I kinda hope he dies... because the good guy can't keep winning".  <insert stunned emoticon here>  That just strikes me as wrong, so wrong - especially for someone so young. 

On the news now?  A story about a tourist who was attacked by a shark - 8 foot tiger shark.  Also, tropical depression Cosme is passing south of the islands.  The big island might get a little rain.

Gas was $3.13 on post today.  When we were in NC, the cheapest I saw gas was $2.69 at the Walmart in Elizabeth City.  Milk was $5 a gallon at the Safeway down the block from us, and was totally out of stock on Sunday at the commissary.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

somber news

- There is a lady in my sunday school class whose daughter has been battling cancer for quite a while (I don't know what kind).  I just found out that she passed away yesterday. 

- There is another lady in our class who is wheelchair bound.  She is currently battling cancer that started out as breast cancer and has spread to her bones.  The latest news on her is the bone cancer has stopped growing and is almost gone, but unfortunately,she now has liver cancer and has to start a new chemo.  She starts that tomorrow.  She has 7 kids.  She has been, until recently, working with the children's classes, teaching my boys at church.  Our S.S. class has been taking meals to her twice a week.  It's the very least we can do.  She has an amazing amout of energy and grace, considering.  She says that she hasn't really had the nausea that is typically associated with chemo - but does have some of the other side affects.

- A few weeks ago we had a lady visiting our class who just found out her grown daughter has leukemia and has gone through a lot of treatment but has been hiding it from her family, because she knew how they would react.  With a lot of weeping and blame finding and guilt.  (if I can say, these are actions focused on self, instead of the patient)  I got to talk to her a little, mostly listened.  I tried to reassure her that sometimes cancer happens even though no one in the family has ever had it before, it's not always genetic (why do we need to blame?) and it's not necessarily one single thing environmental - sometimes plastic water bottles are just plastic water bottles.  I haven't seen or talked to her in a while, I hope that her and the rest of her famly are now focused on the daughter and her care and support.  I know that *I* didn't want anyone crying around me.  At least not so early on - if I knew it were my last days, then yes.  But that's just my opinion.  Apparently the daughter felt the same way enough to hide such a huge thing from her family.  We prayed.

Pain and suffering is all around us.  It's not always cancer, but that's what catches my attention of course.  But there is also good news.  My friend is awaiting the birth of a baby that they hope to adopt.  They have one bio son, and an adopted son.  They are longing for a girl to complete their family.  She has lost infant twinsand has gone through some of the same things I have to get her bio son.  It still amazes me just how many people have dealt (I originally wrote suffered then changed it - but I still think suffered fits) with infertility - be it primary or secondary.  Whenever I hear of someone finally pregnant with a long awaited baby, or adopting a child - my heart just leaps with joy.  Yay, yay, yay!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

a little fun with sounds

want to jazz up your AOL.  You can go to your toolbar and click on Settings and click on Sounds-AOL and you can  pick different voices for the Welcome, You've Got Mail, and Goodbye.

Currently I've got Barry White for the Welcome (love it!), Hannibal Lecther for the You've got Mail (love it but it's too soft) and P Diddy for the Goodbye (pretty good). 

Randy Jackson is good.  Chewbacca is hilarious.  Dr. Evil is hilarious -  I wanted to change my You've Got Mail to that, but he says Frickin', so I did Shaggy instead.  I just changed the Goodbye to Dr. Evil he says "zip it, zip it".  LOL!  It's fun to play.

We've got a cat problem.  I found a ton of cat poop in my tiny patch of a backyard.  Need to google how to discourage cats.  It's ripping up my grass and killing it, not to mention the disgusting poop laying about.  A responsible and caring pet owner would never let their cat roam outside.  It may meet an untimely and early death - and not just by a crazed neighbor.  (I love cats - this indignation is as close to PETA as I come)

As for the ratatouille recipe, here's a link to a blog that posts it:

I'm trying to avoid the question as to what is in it, when Gary and the boys ask.  (my non-vegetable eaters)  Due to the animation, Ryan thinks that the red slices are peperoni and the vinegrette drizzled around the plate he thinks is mustard or cheese, because it's yellow.


Sunday, July 15, 2007


I took the boys to this movie yesterday.  It was cute and I was thrilled to see it was rated G - I thought it had some intense moments, considering G is usually geared for the little ones.  This one is geared more for my age boys I think.  I enjoyed it, but was so sleepy, I nodded off a few times.  The previews were great.  Jake just laughed his head off.  There is a new Bean movie coming out - gotta see it.  And a new Daddy Daycare - but with Cuba Gooding Jr. not  Eddie Murphy.  Jake laughed (loudly) in all the right spots.  Plus we got a couple of little cartoon shorts in the beginning.  Love it!

I googled and found THE ratatouille recipe they used in the movie!  It takes 3 1/2 hours start to finish - but I'm gonna try it some day.  (even though no one in this house other than me eats vegetables)  I think the movie appeal might get someones to try it.

Can I say how far animation has come?  It is just amazing.

I made some guacamole today and am saving the pit to sprout.  This time I'm going to use the "stick it in a pot of dirt" method.

Oh, we are now officially in the 21st century.  We have a DVR!  I love it!  I'm fixin' to use it to record the Next Food Network Star during suppertime.  And along with the DVR, we had to get digital cable on that tv.  The downside is we have to learn a whole new channel lineup - and still remember the old lineup for the other tv's.  Another downside are some of the channels we get - and some we don't get,but shows up on the guide.  (those nasty channels - just the show titles are disgusting)  But, it does have parental control -which we have to figure out.  The good side - music channels!  The boys LOVE this!  They love turning it to the Opera channel.  Cracks them up.  Plus they like having dance contests to different types of music.  We do have to monitor - because there is uncensored rap/other music channels.  I do NOT want to be taken surprise by a random F word.

The other day I was trying to find - get this, the contemporary Christian music channel - and it was on Bravo (a commercial) and the boys were standing there.  I was having a hard time paging through the guide, when the commercial went off and it was the Kathy Griffin show.  That girl has a filthy mouth and she started flinging the words and the comments - augh!  I lost total control of my fingers and could not change it fast enough!  It's tough being a parent.  (not that *I* need that entering my brain either!)

relay for life, and lost teeth

Ryan riding his bike without training wheels!


Tonight was the Kailua Relay for Life.  I went long enough for the survivors lap.  I went alone, since the boys don't know anything.  I walked a little bit with a lady who is a 7 year survivor.  She had breast cancer with positive nodes and went the mastectomy/chemo route.  The short walk tired her out, so I'm thinking the chemo did a number on her or she has other medical issues.  The lady who contacted all the survivors is a 41-year survivor!  I don't know what kind of cancer she had, but WOW!

The survivor walk was led by a bagpipe quartet.  Very classy, and cool.  I felt like a fraud.  My cancer was a baby cancer.  There are even some doctors who call it "precancer".  I was diagnosed with DCIS (ductal carcinoma in situ) - which by definition is non-invasive.  But the reality is, in some people it becomes invasive and in some people it never does.  It *is* cancer, in the ducts.  And because they don't know in whom it will become invasive, you have to treat it.*I* think doctors who call it precancer do us a disservice.  For example, when I went to Bible study on Thursday, one of the ladies asked us to pray for her mom who was recovering from a lumpectomy for a "precancer" in her breast.  Now I can't say she was diagnosed with DCIS, but if she was, I feel her daughter has a false sense of security.  Recurrence within 5 years usually comes back as invasive.  I dunno, that's just my thought.  And this is a HUGE discussion amongst us DCIS gals.  When I was being prepped for my last surgery, one of the guys asked me if I had cancer and I said yes.  And he goes, "so it wasn't in situ. (said like a statement of fact, not a question).  And I said, yes, it was in situ.  He shut up then, wisely.  I had to lose a breast to it, man.  Tell me again that it wasn't cancer.

Anyway, all that said, I still feel like a fraud.  I was sooooo lucky that it wasn't invasive.  Surgery took care of it, and I'm pretty much good.  But I feel it was important to be there.  Representing.

Well, right now I can barely see.  They gave me a crocheted lei and the wind was blowing pretty hard and blew fuzz in my eye.  I had to endure about an hour in great pain.  Now I'm blinded.  I'm sure a good night's sleep and I'll be all good.


News on the boy front.  Both boys lost a tooth within a day of each other.  And actually, Ryan lost his before we got up in the morning and he managed to put his tooth in the tooth fairy bag that was under Jake's pillow.  (the tooth fairy forgot to visit!  oops!)  We however, managed to sneak money under their pillows and the boys didn't say a thing about it.  This is the closest they've lost teeth - not yet on the same day, but close.

Ryan learned how to ride his bike without training wheels today.  I've got a ton of pictures and even some video.  I'll try to post the video.  Tried it, but it didn't work.  Rats, it was pretty good.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I need educatin' - a plea

I have been raised to respect my elders.  And I do.  So therein lies the struggle.  Somehow I've gotten hooked up into something that sounded wonderful and exciting at first.  But as time has gone by, the situation has revealed itself to be very touchy and complicated.  The lady I'm dealing with  - this was her livelihood so she is super stoked.  But, and I hate to blame it on her age, she's in her 80's.  I think it's a bit of her personality and a bit of age, but she's scattered and all over the place - and cannot for the life of her connect people to their names.  She keeps referring to me as Ann Marie (when she's talking to other people) and cannot keep straight that Amy is a parent-volunteer, not a teacher and she is connected to ME not Ann Marie.  And that's just an example of the scatteredness, out of many examples.  Anyway, I'm finding out the situation will require much diplomacy and delicacy and organization and positiveness - and the idea may get shot down.  But, as I work with my 80 year old friend - I believe she can't handle it.  That's my gut.  She declares that she's done this for 30 years and knows how to handle principals.  But she doesn't know our principal.  Kid gloves, I'm telling ya.

I have tried in every way that I know how to put this topic to rest.  To call back the hounds.  Without directly saying "this ain't gonna happen with you involved".  I've gone the "it's too soon - we aren't prepared - I don't feel this is a good fit for the school - I don't have a good feeling about it - let's table the idea until next semester", I've even gone the "I feel our school needs something low key" (I got "oh no! that won't do!)  I mean, the red flags couldn't be any more clear to me.  I think she views the red flags as a personal challenge!

Come on.  I know you are out there.  Those of you who charge full steam ahead when you are told no.   What can a person say to stop you - while being respectful?  And without lying?

The last few days have completely put me off the idea.  Theoretically, it's a great idea and would be good for the kids and the school.  But...  but... but....

Oh, and she thinks this thing was my idea.  I don't know how we got hooked up - but this was not something I pursued in the least.  So she's even more determined to help me get this accomplished. You can see how hard it is to let someone down who is going the extra mile for you.  I've tried to explain it - was almost in tears with frustration on the phone with her.  But I had to hold back out of respect.  To me, it's a neat idea, if it happens great, if not, that's sad.  To her, this is her passion and we will prevail!


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

tattoos revisited - yes, another one of THOSE posts

I'm currently sporting a red-eyed tree frog tatt (temporary of course).  It just replaced Piglet.  My husband just rolls his eyes at me.  I like them because they make me smile when I look in the mirror.  Of course, I don't always want to have a tattoo there.  I like the bare look too.  Regardless of scar.

I'm nervous when it comes to getting the real tattoo.  That I won't like the color or something.  I've seen good ones, and bad ones.  I know you can't compare a temporary tattoo with a real tattoo, but I keep choosing tattoos that I think I would like, but they look so different once it's on.  Not like how I envision.  I guess I'm learning that I'm going to have to trust the gal who'll do the tattoo.  Anyway, I certainly have learned that I can never do a real, real tattoo - you know, like one on my ankle or something.  Not that I've ever wanted one.  Firstly, I wouldn't be able to choose a design.  I already knew that.  Can't make decisions that are so permanent.  I'm not particularly attached to one cute thing - I like all cute things.  I don't have a "theme" or mascot in my life - like Tinkerbell or dragonflies or skulls.  And then, I wouldn't like it once it's on, because it wouldn't look like what's on paper - and I don't have that vision to imagine what it looks like on skin.  Oh, and I've watched some episodes of Miami Ink (like that makes me an expert) and the tattoo artists seem to do what THEY want, their interpretation of the idea.  I often go, ewww!  Did you see that gigantic anchor on that girls hip?  She's too pretty to be sporting this masculine Popeye thing!  I think she really wanted something small.  :-O

I should be documenting all my temp. tattoos.  Good scrapbook page.  Need to whip out the camera before the tree frog starts wearing off.  I think I'm going to do Pooh next.  There was a Pooh in the package with the Piglet - but he's kinda big.  Wouldn't want his ear peeking up out of my shirts!

Anyway, this entry totally doesn't reflect my mood tonight.  I've got a lot rolling around in my mind.  You know, I'm the kind of person that has the need to do the right thing and to please and I hate to say no and I hate to give up.  But I think I may have to make a hard phone call tomorrow.  I told myself to sleep on it tonight and see how Ifeel tomorrow and see if anything new happens.  I hate it, but I think the best decision is to wait.  Things are too rushed and unorganized.  Plus I need to weigh if I can really make the committment - or will my medical issues interfere.  Now you KNOW I hate that.  But it's something that I'm going to have to make myself consider - to be fair to everyone.  I know I'm being completely vague - but I bet you can relate anyway.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

a food entry - and my hormones talking

Ahem.  When am I NOT talking about food?  LOL!  Oh, that would be when I'm talking about my boobs.

I'm stuffed.  Just got back from Big City Diner.  I had the "Upcountry Vegetable Sandwich" and let me tell you, it was GOOD!  It's like a salad sandwich - but it's better than that sounds.  This isn't the first time I've eaten it.  It was love at first bite.  It has Japanese cucumber, baby greens, tomato, roasted corn, avacado slices, shredded carrots, a slice of cheddar and a slice of monterey jack and the sauce, on three slices of toasted whole wheat bread. (built like a club)  Yummy.

The reason I ate so much was because I've had a productive morning.  Took a longish walk, but not my two hours.  Then after getting cleaned up, the family and Miss Eleanor went door to door inviting kids to my house this coming week for a 5 day bible club.  Eleanor is retired, but she works(worked?) for Child Evangelism and that's how I got hooked up with this.  We didn't get to all the houses, because our neighborhood is largish and the sun was boring down upon us.  But we got almost all the invites passed out.  I hope we get some kids.  I wonder if I would send my kids to a stranger's house to hear bible stories.  I'm very particular about who is teaching my kids about God.  But the invitations had a blurb about CEF on the back - so the parents can check it out.  Plus, the parents are invited to stay if they are wary.  My personal fears are that either no one will come, or that the kids will come but not be interested enough to come back.  See, I'm not too good with kids.  I'm not all fun and games - I'm kinda boring.  So, if anyone comes, and if they come BACK, it'll definitely be a work of God.  And that's the way I like it.  Leave it in His hands.  And that's the way it always should be.  I think that's why I don't have any natural talents or abilities.  Because I'd be taking the credit myself all the time.  My ego likes to be stroked.  Hey, I'm mature enough to realize that.  (see, there I go again!)  Anyway, I'm not the one doing the teaching.  Teenagers are trained and they tell the stories and do the songs.  I just provide the location, some lemonade and pass out the invites.  Wanna come?  :-)

Yesterday for supper I made chicken fajitas, which were good, and homemade salsa (not quite so good, I need to work on it), refried beans from a can, and spanish rice.  I thoroughly enjoyed it, but the boys, not so much.  Jake didn't eat anything.  Turns out, he fell asleep on the couch by 7:00.  Poor thing - jet lag.

When I get my salsa perfected, I'll try to remember to post the recipe.  But that may be a while, so don't hold your breath.  About now you are realizing that I haven't ever posted my guacamole recipe...  Maybe some day.  LOL!  I'm waiting for the avacados to come free again so I can experiment a little more.  But I kinda like what I make now.

I don't know why I'm so focused on Mexican food.  Maybe because the Mexican food here is so lousy.  And if we move to Japan... well, I can't imagine the mexican food there would be any good, if they have any at all!  I guess that's why travel is good - to bust myths we have about other places.  That reminds me, I stumbled across the most interesting article.  It's called "what the world eats" by Time Magazine.  It's photos from around the world of families in their home surrounded by the food they eat in a week's time.,29307,1626519_1373664,00.html  To me, the best looking foods were the families who had lots of fruits and vegetables and fresh baked breads.  Yum!  And it was interesting to see that the most "advanced" countries had the most packaged goods.  I'm embarrassed to say that the two U.S. families had very little fresh produce and a lot of junky looking stuff.  I'm even more embarrassed to say that it looks too much like our household.  At least more so than the more appealing homes featured.  Go check it out.  Do you have a favorite?  Sicily looks really good to me, but some others are good looking too.

I had another foodie comment, but I can't remember it.  Oh, are you watching the new Top Chef?  I've got a crush on CJ.  He's the tall one.  He has such a friendly face.  I actually read his bio, it says he's a cancer survivor.  I guess that's why he's got such a good 'tude.  Lovin life and living it to the full.  That's appealing.

Oh!  Speaking of crushes.  Are you watching Earth Aid?  (is that what it's called?)  Did you see Phil Colllins?  He's looking good, man.  All trim - much better than 20 years ago.  And he just went ahead and shaved off his hair.  Sporting the bald look.  Looks good!

Confession time.  Like you didn't guess this one after that last comment.  I kinda like older guys.  When I was in my 20's I began noticing men with the salt and pepper hair and grisled features.  You know, upper 30's.  Now, I'm noticing men who are balding.  Salt and pepper is still good, mind you.  Yes, I'm weird.  Gary, my hubby, is in the salt and pepper stage.  Except when he gets his hair cut, most of it gets cut off - due to the military cut.  (not minding the military cut one bit - you know, men in uniform...LOL!)  But Gary has a very full head of hair.  No chance of him balding any time soon.  But the other day, he put on his reading glasses, and the light hit him just right...  Suh-weet!  Um, is this some sort of mid life hormonal thing?  Reading glasses?!  Who on earth finds that sexy??  I hated them when I first saw them, because I didn't think they were the right style for his face.  Maybe this was a different pair...  Hormones, no doubt.  :-D

Monday, July 2, 2007

one of my worst nightmares...

I'm sick of chocolate.  Is that possible?  Ugh, it sure feels like it.


Please, someone tell my mom to stop cooking!  She made the Barefoot Contessa brownies again today, for a 4th of July block party.  But she forgot to put in the flour (this is SO classic mom, really, she's a good cook, but she's a little dingy sometimes).  So she forced us to first try a bite, and then later, eat some.  Meanwhile, all week we've been working on the chocolate sauce (for ice cream) that she made a double batch of.  Thankfully, she's decided to take the "brownies", so we won't be forced to eat more.  Really, the taste is fine, but it is not the right texture.  Not cakey at all, and not fudgey.  Very soft - and since it calls for a lot of butter, it's a bit greasy.  Brownies need a good chew factor.

Yuck.  I'm afraid to weigh myself.  I feel icky.  I had french fries at lunch and supper today.  <groan>  I'm sure my blood is barely pulsing past the cholesterol globs stuck to the sides of my arteries.

Anyway, I'm going to be taking guacamole and homemade salsa to the block party.  Eh, gotta get vegetables in somehow.