Happy Chinese New Year

January 26, 2020

We celebrated the Chinese New Year by doing absolutely nothing. I guess it’s because I am Korean and David is white. We definitely don’t align ourselves with China.

I recall being in Macau in May 2010 for a day, as part of our 5 day trip to Hong Kong. We stopped at a jewelry store in Macau to look at pendants. I was told that my birth animal was the Dog, because I was born in 1946. So, I bought a Dog pendant and chain:

However, I recently learned that I was born in the year of the Rooster, because my birthday falls in that year. Oops. I bought the wrong pendant.

I also learned that Rooster people should marry Ox or Snake people, because they are compatible. Guess what? David was born in the year of the Ox. Whoopie! No wonder we have a long, enduring marriage of almost 40 years. We were meant for each other.

But, I am a Capricorn, and David is a Pisces. Does that mean anything?

Anyway, this is all just for fun. I don’t believe in astrology.

Chaos in a beautiful neighborhood

January 24, 2020

Recent tragedy at Diamond Head: 4 killed, 1 injured, and 7 houses destroyed by fire. The perpetrator was a man in his sixties, who was angry that his landlady had gone to court to have him evicted from his basement apartment in her home. Two of the victims were police officers, who were shot and killed by the tenant. Two skeletons, found at the scene, were probably those of the landlady and the tenant. The injured person was a friend of the landlady. The landlady’s house was torched, and the fire spread to six surrounding houses, destroying them all.

This is the area below Diamond Head, photographed by David in 2011 when he went there to hike. As you can see, the houses down below are beautiful, expensive and historic, with gorgeous views of the ocean:

Oh, how dangerous it is to have a tenant in one’s house!

Looking back, David and I took a chance when we rented out our guest room to a stranger from Texas. But, he was gainfully employed by the federal government, and he paid his rent on time. When I inherited money from my mother’s estate, we gave him notice that we were shutting down our rental business. He left without a fuss. We have no plans to rent it out again.

If you can’t trust your own tenant, whom can you trust?

Bug-free flowers

January 22, 2020

I never bring into my house flowers from my yard because of the bugs, particularly ants. But, thanks to the supermarket, I am able to buy bug-free flowers.

Prior to the party for Lisa last Sunday, I went to Sack N Save supermarket and purchased a bouquet of flowers. It was a huge bouquet, which, when divided, made 2 bouquets.

One bouquet, consisting of chrysanthemums, graced my buffet table:

The other bouquet, consisting of lilies, graced my dessert table, and now here it is on the dining table:

What would life be like without bug-free flowers?

Lisa’s party – 2020

January 20, 2020

We all had a blast last night, celebrating the homecoming of our younger daughter, Lisa. There were 16 of us. Sylvia and Toni came later, so this photo was taken without them:

This is a photo of part of the group with Sylvia and Toni seated:

Here is a photo of our immediate family:

It was potluck, and here are photos of some of the food:

Travis and Rylan:

Vegetarian frittata (my recipe):

Chicken stir-fry with homemade teriyaki sauce (my recipe):

Nice cheese and cracker dish (from Mona and Steve):

Waldorf Salad (from Toni and Charles):

There were desserts, too, but I forgot to take a photo of them.

During circle time prior to the meal, I acknowledged Hollis and Ethel, who are well into their 90s and are doing quite well for their age. Hollis actually drove his car to our home. I also acknowledged our older daughter, Maria, who was voted Teacher of the Year by her peers at her school. There will be an awards banquet in April, which David and I will attend.

It was nice to get together like this, because Lisa had not seen some of these guests in years.

Memories of the beach

January 17, 2020

This is gigi-hawaii at age 22. I was lying on the beach at Sans Souci, trying to get a sun tan (1968):

This is gigi at age 66. I was trying on my snorkel prior to getting into the water at Hanauma Bay, a famous place to see fish underwater (November 2012):

This is gigi’s husband, David:

This is Hanauma Bay (November 2012):

This is David, taking a shower after snorkeling. I chose to take a shower at home:

I have not been to the beach since 2012. I don’t know why.

Many ways to make life worthwhile

January 15, 2020

My 74th birthday has come and gone. David and I took advantage of the free birthday meals at Anna Miller’s in Pearlridge and at the Cattle Company in Pearl City. We had a great time eating with gusto and relishing every morsel. Maria and Lisa called to wish me a happy birthday.

I am in poor health, but I have managed to outlive my brother, my sister in law, and my brother in law. It just goes to show that you don’t have to be in perfect health to make it to 74.

The main thing to know about me is that I have a nice house to live in and a nice husband to live with.

Tomorrow, my younger daughter Lisa will arrive from the mainland for her 2 week vacation in Hawaii. David will pick her up at the airport. Lisa likes staying in the guest room, because of the air conditioner, the TV, and the private bathroom. Further, she may drive our car, so she doesn’t have to rent one.

Next Sunday, we shall host a party for Lisa.

There are so many wonderful ways to make life worthwhile.

Not everybody likes blue

January 13, 2020

As you know, we recently bought new blue leather furniture and a colorful area rug for our living room. David and I both love blue. It’s our favorite color.

But, Maria told us that she is “not a big fan of blue.” She thinks we over-did it, because we also have a blue wall to wall carpet. “Too much blue,” she said.

I was surprised, because I thought blue was a popular color, appreciated by many. I think she prefers brown and other earthy colors. Me? I like the colors of the sky, the rainbow, the sunrise and the sunset. I don’t care for brown that much.

But, hey, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.

This is our new living room furniture. The area rug is called “Sunrise,” and it is sold on Amazon:

This is a painting of “Lahaina Harbor” by artist David Warren. It matches the color of the furniture. Note the yellow accent wall, which goes with the area rug:

This is our blue planter, sitting on our coffee table:

Look at my blue tablecloth and matching cloth napkins:

As you can tell, I love blue, and so does David. But, not everybody likes blue.

Planning a party for Lisa

January 11, 2020

Lisa and I last year.

As usual, the month of January has brought cold, windy, rainy weather. I now have a bad cold, complete with sneezing and coughing. If this keeps up, I won’t attend the Mozart concert at the Blaisdell on Sunday. David is fine and will attend.

Meanwhile, we are planning a party for 14 people at our home. I have invited my nieces and nephews, my sister Sylvia, my cousins Ethel and Hollis, and Maria and her family. The reason for the party? To welcome home Lisa, who will be arriving soon for her two week vacation in Hawaii.

It will be lovely. There will be lots of food. And there will be a talent show! I’ll play a Minuet by Bach on my violin. It’s a simple piece, lasting about 20 seconds. Bach was born during the 1600s, so this Minuet is 400-500 years old. David will sing his Roosevelt High School Alma Mater. He also will tell a Filipino joke. Yes, it’s an ethnic joke. Other guests can participate, too, by either singing or telling a joke. Participants will receive $5.00 each.

Let’s hope this blasted illness disappears by January 19, the day of the party.

Bromeliad for the coffee table

January 9, 2020

Our poinsettia plant was dying, so we tossed it, and drove to the nursery at Home Depot. As usual, there was an abundance of plants:

After meandering up and down the aisles, I saw these bromeliads:

I bought one and now, here it is on my coffee table:

It’s so nice to see a fresh plant in the house.

“Ode to Joy”

January 7, 2020

The Hawaii Symphony Orchestra and Chorus.

We kicked off the new year by attending Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, the “Ode to Joy” choral symphony, at the Blaisdell Concert Hall. When Beethoven composed this piece, he was already deaf. He heard the music in his brain and was able to transfer it into notes on paper. It really is a monumental work of art, first performed in Germany in 1824. He died three years later in 1827 at the age of 57.

Of the four vocal soloists, we were most interested in the tenor, Ta’u Pupu’a. He was born and raised in Tonga, attended Weber State University in Utah on a football scholarship, and majored in music. He was drafted by the Cleveland Browns and also played for the Baltimore Ravens as a defensive end. A football injury ended his football career, after which he switched to a career in music. He made his opera debut in 2011. David and I liked his voice a lot.

But, I felt that the Korean baritone, SeungHyeon Baek, stole the show. He had a magnificent voice, which was quite thrilling to listen to.

The other two soloists, a black soprano (Marsha Thompson) and a white mezzo-soprano (Maya Hoover), rounded out the program. You might say that music is an international language because of the mixture of ethnicities on stage.

After raining for days, it was nice to have clear weather during the Sunday matinee:

People were dressed for the balmy weather: