Monday, September 30, 2019


Just some random thoughts on the past weeks (months)...

If you look through our blog, you'll see that we've had quite difficult summers over the years...this one was especially hard.

My mom renovated the house maybe 10 years ago and at the time instead of purging, she had them make "more places" for her to store things...

So when we were de-cluttering, it was a "treasure trove" full of stuff in boxes.

You just don't realize how much stuff can fit in a closet until you have to actually empty it.

The rule of "if you haven't opened a box, looked at the contents in a couple of years, you probably do not need it" is true.

My mom kept everything...receipts, documents, you name it, she had it neatly filed away.

And while it was interesting looking at documents from my parents first couple years of marriage! their grades from elementary school and such, shredding all those documents was not fun.

I overheated and overloaded the shredder too many times to count.

A quote that I heard on a "Super Soul" podcast by Abraham Joshua Heschel kind of stuck out in my mind, "Things when magnified are forgeries of happiness" (It's not that we shouldn't have "things" we should just appreciate what we do have and make the most use of them.)

When deadlines arose, (I think) personalities of people really showed.

It kind of reminded me of the different ways my brother and I did homework...I was the type to "just get it done", so I would have more time to get out and play.

My brother, on the other hand, seemed to be the opposite, he would (procrastinate or maybe he was just more thorough) stay up late the night before something was due...

The echo in a room after most of the things in it are taken out...eerie and sad.

This is my last summer with my furry niece.

She probably won't miss me, but I will truly miss "hugging" (terrorizing) her and having our "conversations".

I know she was stressed seeing everything being brought out of closets, her hiding places taken away.

She let us know she was stressed (maybe even depressed) by peeing everywhere EXCEPT where she was supposed to.

I got first hand of this when I sat in one of her "puddles" when she had peed in a chair, stepped in one when she peed on my slipper and once when she did so in or near my suitcase (actually she probably is getting back at me for all the terrorizing...)

She is not the cuddly type and I was totally not a cat person before meeting her but I am thankful for her keeping me "zen".

I am also thankful for my Aunties (blood and not), BFF, V and the many friends who took the time out of their busy schedules to spend some time with me, for keeping me "zen" and on track.

Very thankful that I don't have to work, so I can do these all these "chapters" in life.

Also appreciate the virtual and real life friends who reached out and shared their "purging" stories as well as their hurdles in selling their family homes.

It reassured me that I was not alone going through these things and was definitely not the first to do so.

Very thankful for Satoshi for letting me be away from him this long...thankful for technology so we could facetime (so that I could help him find stuff around the house as well as be his "alarm clock"...)

You should know that while I was here, MIL fell and was hospitalized (BIL says she is on the mend and should be discharged soon) and Satoshi's nephew's wife had a baby (when I get back to Japan, we are sending them LOTS of diapers!)...

Hoping that the closing will go smoothly at the end of October.

I also hope the family that is purchasing this house will enjoy living in this neighborhood and enjoy the house.

It has been a long yet short 90-plus days here.

As always, it was delicious (maybe too delicious?! I need to go on a diet!!)

This summer was krazy super hot and humid.

And if you are worried that I won't be back to Hawaii, I will, my stay may not be as long, but next year, some time after the (Tokyo) Olympics...I need to renew my license (hoping "that" adventure won't be too painful)

Thank you Mom and Dad, I will treasure the memories of this house and you.

Take care and be well.

Talk to you from the other side of the world.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

this week

Friday afternoon we had the house inspected and the buyer was scheduled to walk through the property.

We came back after the time that it was all supposed to end, but the family was still there!

It was kind of a weird feeling sitting out front, watching others leave "your" home...

Hopefully the inspection results will be good.

Dinner was later than usual...I bought a pizza from Pieology (the line was krazy!) and tried the porter from Big Island Brewhaus (super chocolatey!)

Saturday, lunch out with BFF W at Taqueria El Ranchero.

First time trying chilaquiles...super spicy and delicious.

I hope W enjoyed her nachos.

Afterwards we made our last run to Paalaa Kai Bakery for the summer.

I picked up a malasada for my Sunday breakfast.

Sunday was super humid (again!)

I ran up to Aunty Kalei's for a cowgirl (POG (passion orange guava), pineapple, strawberry) shave ice and again added lemon good!

Sunday dinner (our last one for this summer) was at Vein in Kakaako.

Aunty M1 and W1 had their pork chop, which apparently is brined...unfortunately, this was way too salty for them (they think the cook added more salt when grilling).

My brother had their lamb chops...which he said was delicious but just had too little food.

Aunty M and I ordered the catch of the day which was Onaga (red snapper) with a yuzu (citron) beurre blanc (literally white butter) sauce.

Bummer that this fish was overcooked and

Since we had "complained" about this and that, dessert was on the house...their bread pudding.

Meh, I've had could have been more custardy...

I'm glad we tried this place and thankful that Aunty M1 and W1 treated all of us...we all hope this restaurant will be able to survive...

Monday...rain, lots of rain...then sun and humidity!

BFF W had taken the day off, so after she did her errands, we had lunch at Big City Diner...$2 for cheese?!

It was still nice to get out even though it was raining.

Tuesday, I went to McCully Stamps & Coin, the owner bought some of the old coins that my parents had collected over the years.

He was so nice and a little TMI (too much info), showing me his lung cancer scar (gasp!)...still, I think he was fair and I'm glad we were able to sell these old coins.

Afterwards, I had intended to go to Target, but when I arrived, everyone in the parking lot warned me that their network was down so they were only taking cash.

Well, network down means that you can't access their app too, so no discounts! (1st world problems yeah?!)

Oh em gee I am addicted to shave ice with lemon peel...thank goodness Aunty Kalei's is open Tuesday-Thursday and the weekends.

Aloha Salads...hummus pita wrap for lunch

and the Goddess (mixed greens, almonds, papaya, avocado, green goddess dressing) plus I added chicken for dinner.

Wednesday...more rain!

Lunch from Flamingo's Express...I tried their mini teri chicken bento.

Teriyaki sauce a bit too sweet and goopy.

Glad I tried it but probably wouldn't get this again though...

Thursday, lunch with V at Senia.

V loves this place and was kind to take me there.

The chef from the original Vintage Cave, Chris Kajioka and Anthony Rush (from French Laundry) serve creative dishes for lunch and dinner.

We had the 3 course...

Appetizer course...I chose the ham hock terrine...meaty! with a quail egg and puckery tomato sauce delicious!

V had their ahi tataki...she ate a couple of pieces but decided that the texture wasn't for her, so I was lucky to get to finish this for her.

Main course I chose the scallops with risotto and pickled daikon...delicious! nice sear on the scallops, not over cooked...this was nice with the harissa it was served with.

Creamy risotto and nicely pickled daikon.

V had their ahi burger...looks good yeah?!

Dessert course...I chose the carrot cake brown butter mochi...good especially with the cream cheese frosting!

V had the Senia cookie...a warmed peanut butter and chocolate chip cookie topped with vanilla gelato.

It was nice to watch everyone (especially the prep staff) in the kitchen.

Friday, started out with a schnecken from Baker Dudes.

Schneckens (I like saying this word!) are literally snails in German...this was filled with lots of nuts and flaky! Bummed I found out about this place so late but look forward to checking them out the next time I am back.

After a trip to the bank to see if we could cash my parents travelers cheques we found stashed (we need to wait until they get authenticated as the bank the purchased the cheques from do not do business with the company anymore (boo! and they are located in the UK?!))...hopefully this will get sorted out by the time my brother moves (or we may just have to cut our losses)...

I then went to visit my mom and dad at their respective resting places...

Lunch from Mama Woo's...I've been wanting to try this place for some time...

The parking is nuts!

Luckily I found a stall on the street.

I had the kimbap, mandoo and fried chicken wing for lunch...the fried chicken wing was so good! crispy, sweet and savory.

The kimbap was good too.

For the next couple meals I'll be eating Mama Woo's Special...4 side dishes, kalbi, bbq beef, chicken (mandoo & chicken wing).

Because I didn't want rice, they gave me one more side dish.

Friday dinner we met Aunty M for pupus (caesar salad, octopus with arugula, garlic fries, crab artichoke dip)

And lilikoi mango cheesecake.

Saturday morning, we met up with relatives for breakfast at Liliha Nimitz...

I ordered the two eggs (over medium), portuguese sausage and potatoes.

The weather is still gross (humid)...I may need to make a shave ice run...

Flying out tomorrow....hope you have a nice weekend!

75 North King Street
Honolulu, Hawaii
Phone: 808.200.5412
Closed Sundays
Lunch: Tuesdays-Fridays 11:00-14:00
Dinner: Mondays-Saturdays 17:30-21:30

Baker Dudes
923 Alakea Street
Honolulu, Hawaii
Phone: 808.597.4717
Closed Saturdays-Sundays
Hours: 6:30-16:00

Mama Woo's
2080 South King Street
Honolulu, Hawaii
Phone: 808.941.6262
Hours: 10:00-20:30

Saturday, September 28, 2019

we're 14!


Not sure how many readers we still have out there...comments here have dwindled significantly...not sure why the spammers are stronger than ever though.

In a world where everything is based on "instant", if you are still a reader of this blog...Thank you!

Hoping to keep this blog going for a while longer.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

more movies

A list of more movies I saw after I posted here:
“Bohemian Rhapsody”
“The Hundred Foot Journey”
“Salt Fat Acid Heat” 
“About Last Night”(2014)
“Coco” (finally watched the whole movie)
“Incredibles 2”
"Always Be My Maybe" (Netflix)

Forgot to add these to movies I saw more than once too:
“10 Things I Hate About You”
“The Devil Wears Prada”

Saturday, September 21, 2019

this week

Friday started off with this beautiful sunrise.

Bought some items from Nagoya Bakery...egg tart (super flaky crust!) and coconut cross raisin bread (the bread is huge, so I had this for 2 meals, not much coconut but still delicious)

Solo pupu party dinner...Uproll Cafe's sexy salmon salad, Foodland's Kolohe Mix and Underwood's Rose Bubbles.

Saturday, lunch from Taqueria El Ranchero.

I tried their tamales.

Living the sheltered food life that I have, it was my first time to try tamales.

Shredded meat is wrapped in a corn "dough" then steamed in a corn leaf.

I bought one pork and one chicken.

I also brought home a little of their housemade pico de gallo to put on the tamales.

I enjoyed these...the ratio of "dough" to meat was balanced, the pico de gallo added a nice kick.

I'm glad I tried these.

In the afternoon, we met with the Realtor to fill out some paperwork.

Sunday, major heat and humidity!

I think the weather dude said that we've been having high heat and humidity every day of September! ack!

At one point in the afternoon, I couldn't stand the heat and ran up to Aunty Kalei's to get some shave ice.

Tropical Summer (pineapple, coconut, watermelon) plus lemon good and took our minds off of the heat for a bit.

It was my first time trying this place and I'm glad I did!

I like how Aunty Kalei, puts the shave ice into a styrofoam bowl with a cover for take out...not ecologically friendly, but was super appreciated since I drove up myself and couldn't hold anything on the ride home.

Just before going to Sunday dinner, we purged some of our board games by giving them to the library.

Sunday dinner at Aunty M's...pot roast, salad, 3-bean salad

Dessert was from Flamingo's Express.

They are known for their banana pie, but I was too scared to try it, so I played it safe and bought their apple.

It was so good, flaky crust, lots of apple, not too sweet.

Monday, still hot and humid...gah!

Lunch from La Tour Cafe...pepperoni hand pie.

I had wanted to try their beef curry one, but they had sold out.

This was flaky and was just too hot to eat something like this on a hot and humid day though.

Lychee Mango with Lemon Peel shave ice...the day before, Aunty Kalei made a mistake with our order, so she gave us the one she made as a mistake.

She insisted on the making the order right and that she wouldn't take money for it (I did sneak some $$ into her tip jar though).

She also told me, "just keep the shave ice in the freezer and take this out when you are watching your Korean dramas"...sorry, Aunty, but I don't watch K-dramas.

Still, this was perfect with all the krazy heat and humidity we've been having.

Dinner was La Tour's buffalo chicken salad...enough for 2 meals!

Spicy chicken, olives, roasted corn, red onion, bleu cheese!

Tuesday, Aunty M1 adopted our dining table. (thank you!)

Thankful for all the meals, conversations this table has seen.

After the movers left with the table, I brought more things to JCCH.

Lunch from Shaloha...shawarma sandwich (grilled chicken, hummus and veggies in a pita).

I like how HUGE these sandwiches are...enough for 2 meals!

Wednesday, doughnuts from Donut King.

Love their chocolate coconut cake donut and tried their blueberry cake donut.

The blueberry was kind of "fake" tasting, but super moist!

I got carded at Tamura's!

It felt WAY nicer than being asked if I qualify for the "senior discount" or being called "ma'am".

Can't wait to try this porter and cola!

Thursday dinner from Hughley's Southern Cuisine.

I tried their 1/2 rack, collards, baked beans and corn bread.

So good! Their corn bread is super buttery! And their ribs are fall off the bone tender.

I'm glad I tried this place and wouldn't mind going back for their brisket.

So that was kind of my week...

My time in Hawaii is winding down, the heat and humidity still haven't stopped, though I do see more "Fall-like" weather (rain).

Hoping it is cooler where you are, have a nice weekend.

Nagoya Bakery
98-042 Kamehameha Highway
Aiea, Hawaii
Phone: 808.484.9999
Hours: 8:00-17:00

Aunty Kalei's Shave Ice
2321 Auhuhu Street
Pearl City, Hawaii
Phone: 808.343.8289
Closed Mondays & Fridays
Hours: 13:00-17:00

Flamingo's Express
98-820 Moanalua Road
Aiea, Hawaii
Phone: 808.376.8388
Hours: Mondays-Saturdays 7:30-20:00, Sundays 7:30-15:00

Hughley's Southern Cuisine
99-080 Kauhale Street
Aiea, Hawaii
Phone: 808.380.4200
Closed Mondays
Hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays 11:00-20:00, Sundays 13:00-18:00

Saturday, September 14, 2019

this week

Friday, met up with V...we had lunch at Moke's Bread and Breakfast in Kaimuki.

I think this is in the space where Kan Zaman used to be.

This place has breakfast type foods, as well as sandwiches.

V tried their smoked ahi melt...her sandwich looked so good!

I tried their Honey Butter Biscuit plate...this came with a grilled biscuit, their honey butter, eggs done your way (I chose over medium) and your choice of meat (I chose portuguese sausage).

We enjoyed our food and glad we tried this place but the interior of this place has everything bouncing off the walls which made for shouting conversations...sigh

Dinner was a solo pupu party...I bought the mini chirashi from Aloha Cones and added edamame and avocado.

Bummed that they moved from Pearlridge to Kalihi (old Kam Bakery building).

Their parking is kind of krazy, would definitely recommend parking in their 2nd lot (located below the lot behind the building)

Saturday, Breakfast with relatives at Liliha Bakery on Nimitz.

Since the time we met up was later than my breakfast time, I had this for my lunch...grilled cornbread with portuguese sausage.

Their cornbread was so dry...bummer.

Dinner with BFF at La Tour Cafe...their curry chicken salad was too spicy for my liking.

Sunday, Open House.

According to the realtor, there were 8 groups that came to the Open House and several families that were interested.

In the evening, we had a 7 year service for my mom.

It is actually 6 years since she has passed but the way they count years in Japan makes it fast, yet not really.

Aunty M1 arranged for her friends to perform the service (thank you!).

Dinner was from Roast Duck much food! roast chicken, cake noodle, roast pork, char siu, some salads from Down to Earth (curry quinoa and pono potato salad).

Aunty M brought Haupia Chiffon Cake from Cake Works. (thank you!)

My mom loved coconut as well as chinese food, I think she would've approved of this dinner.

Monday, 2nd showing for a family that came to the Sunday Open House.

I went to Starbucks to wait out the hour during the showing.

Bummed that the nitro cold brew I ordered wasn't even cold.

That evening...we got an offer from the family!

Tuesday, we put in a counter offer.

Lunch with Aunty M and Aunty V at Kalapawai Cafe in Kapolei.

I had their reuben with a good!

Thanks for lunch Aunty V!

I also got to drive Aunty M's loaner which was a Mini Countryman which was more like an SUV.

Bummed that it was automatic, I love driving, especially if it is a manual (stick shift) car.

Wednesday, Uncle H and Aunty V took the remaining cement pots that we had lying around the garden.

Aunty V said that it is hard to come by these cement types pots, I'm glad it is going to a good home. (Thank you!)

That evening, the family accepted our counter offer...whoo!

Thursday, heat and humidity have been pretty krazy this summer/fall...

Tried a new (to me) tea by Shaka Tea...mamaki (Hawaiian nettle), pineapple, mint and sweetened with monk fruit.

I'm glad I tried this and would prefer this unsweetened.

Barricade situation on a part of our neighborhood, luckily it didn't affect our street, but many had to stay at a nearby recreation center.

I was also worried that with the news, the buyers might change their glad the situation ended peacefully at midnight.

Rounding out the week though was this sunset.

Hope you have a nice weekend.

Moke's Bread & Breakfast
1127 11th Avenue
Kaimuki, Hawaii
Phone: 808.367.0571
Hours: 6:30-14:00