Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

“Don’t insult the chef”

February 22, 2019

For the longest time, maybe decades, I refused to buy salt and pepper shakers, simply because I felt they were unnecessary.  I always felt my food was perfectly seasoned.  Why would dinner guests insult the chef by requesting salt and pepper shakers?  Some people would salt their food without tasting it first!

What I used to do when cooking the food was pour a little salt in the palm of my hand and then sprinkle the food with a pinch of salt from my fingers.  Also, I would sprinkle pepper from the can it came in.

Well, I finally realized that it wasn’t the most efficient way to season the food.  So, I purchased these two matching salt and pepper shakers, which came with salt and pepper already in them.  They cost only $3.99 at Target.  I placed them on top of my dining table.  I use them now to season my steaks before grilling them, and if they still taste bland after grilling, then I can use the salt and pepper shakers when I am seated at the table.

End of story!



Conversing in a foreign language

February 20, 2019

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David, Carol, and Elsha in my home for lunch and Wii Games.  (2011)


I saw my friend, Carol, at Straub Clinic recently.  We sat together in the waiting room and chatted.  She told me that she is studying Italian and often has a pot luck lunch with other students at her Italian teacher’s home.  And, of course, they all converse in Italian.  Awesome!  I think that is fantastic, considering Carol is 80 years old.

I have studied various foreign languages:  Latin, French, Korean, Russian, German, and Thai.  However, I cannot converse in any of those languages, though I do know some words and some expressions.  As they say, if you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.

I invited Carol and several other friends to my home for lunch in 2011.  Of course, we all spoke in English.  In the photo above, the second woman is Elsha.  She is from Indonesia and is, therefore, fluent in Indonesian and English.  We had a great time playing Wii Bowling and Golfing in my living room after lunch.

Please, click on this link to my blog post, which features that special get together:

Thank goodness, I have a blog that brings back memories of the good times we have had over the years.

Being evaluated

February 18, 2019

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Purple chrysanthemums in my home.  (2012)


My inflamed right eye is now pain-free, but my vision in that eye is worse than before.  I think it’s because of the eye drops I have to take.  They make that eye blurry.  Thank goodness, my left eye is excellent.  I was told last week that my left eye is 20/20.  At any rate, I shall see my ophthalmologist again on Wednesday for a recheck.

Last Friday, David had an appointment with a nurse practitioner in our home.  Our insurance company hired this nurse to interview David to get a general idea of his overall health.  This visit was covered by Medicare.  David was tested for dementia by being asked what happened in the news during the past week and being asked to recall a random name and address given to him by the nurse.  His blood pressure, blood circulation, heart rhythm, and lung function were also tested.  David discussed his health issues and the medications he takes.  I guess he will receive a report from the insurance company later.

I have a similar appointment today in my home.

Indoor electric grill

February 16, 2019

The weather has been windy and rainy all week.  Not ideal weather for grilling in the patio.  So, I decided to buy an indoor electric grill from Target.  It cost less than $60.00:


It comes with an instruction book and a recipe book.  You are supposed to pour 1/2 cup of water in the aluminum pan to prevent smoking.  Then, you have to plug a heating element into the side of the grilling plate and plug the other end into a socket in the wall.  Then, you have to preheat the grill until the red dot on the plug disappears and it reaches the desired temperature (low, medium, or high):


I decided to grill two salmon fillets.  First, I marinated them in Italian dressing for 30 minutes on each side.  When the red dot on the plug disappeared, I grilled the fillets on high for 6 minutes on each side (depends on the thickness of the salmon).  When the center was opaque (cut it open with a knife), it was done.  It was delicious:


After the grill cooled, I washed everything, except for the plug, in warm soapy water, using a sponge.  I didn’t use anything abrasive.

Excellent purchase!  Very easy to use, very easy to clean.  Tonight, I shall grill steaks for dinner.

Hospital blog

February 14, 2019


Pali Momi Medical Center (2019).

As you know, David recently was cured of his leg infection.  Now, it’s my turn to be sick.  I have been diagnosed with iritis, an inflammation of the eye.  The symptoms were right eye pain, sensitivity to light, redness, tears, blurred vision, and right headache.  The pain was so severe on Tuesday that I drove myself to Pali Momi ER at 7:00 a.m.  David was asleep at the time, and I did not want to wake him up.  The ER doctor and nurses did some tests on my right eye.  The doctor phoned my ophthalmologist, Dr. Bender, at Straub Clinic, and she told him that I had to see her immediately.  I called David and told him that I was at Pali Momi ER and that I had to go to Straub Clinic on King Street for further testing of my inflamed right eye.  I could not drive, because my eye hurt so much and it was very sensitive to the sunlight even with dark glasses.  So, since my car was at Pali Momi, it would make no sense for him to drive his car, because then there would be two cars to drive.  I told him to take the taxi to Pali Momi ER and then drive my car to Straub Clinic on King Street.


Straub Clinic and Hospital on King Street (2017).

I was examined by Dr. Bender at Straub.  She told me that the inflammation is in the front of my eye, not deep within, and I am lucky there are no scars, because scars would lead to severe eye damage.  She also said that my eye inflammation was probably linked to my colitis.  If there is inflammation in one part of the body, then there also could be inflammation in another part of the body.

I filled my two prescriptions for eye drops at Straub and was shocked by the copayment:  $151.00.  Wow, very expensive!  I have to take Prednisone every hour while awake and then take Atropine at bedtime until the medications are all gone.

As we were leaving Straub, we bumped into my cousin.  She was there, because her husband was recovering from colon surgery in the hospital wing.  Apparently, he had diverticulitis, and all of his descending colon had to be removed.

This blog sounds like a hospital blog!  Who else will get sick?

A play, a gale, and a leg

February 12, 2019


This is my photo of the opening set at Diamond Head Theatre, taken last Saturday.  The Broadway play, “Noises Off,” was funny, witty, and very British.  Oh, David and I had a wonderful time.  I found myself laughing repeatedly throughout the show.  I enjoyed the British accent, the British slang, and the slapstick comedy.  Very well done.

On Sunday, we experienced a terrible gale, almost like a hurricane, and lots of rain.  Talk about stormy weather.  Some of our potted plants in the side patio fell over, scattering soil, and we were forced to bring down the hanging ferns that were tossing in the wind and threatening our windows.  Thankfully, our house still stands, and we are still alive.

This is how our patio looked BEFORE the gale:


You can imagine what it looked like after the gale.  But, after sweeping up the debris and putting the plants back, it looks normal now.

On Monday, David drove to Straub Clinic for an evaluation of his right infected leg.  Dr. Loui told him his leg looked fine now and David could start swimming in the pool at the gym.  However, he was told to stay away from the hot tub, because there are more germs in a small body of water than in a swimming pool, which is a large body of water.

Gifted and talented grandson

February 10, 2019


Rylan and Maria, after his Christmas concert at Ala Moana Center.  (December 2018)


Me, Rylan, and David (same concert).


My 8-year-old grandson, Rylan, took a test and was placed in the Gifted and Talented program at his elementary school.  He realizes that his third grade classes will be more demanding, but he is up to the challenge.  Meanwhile, he still participates in his school chorus and enjoys being on stage.  He plays with a soccer team and takes classes in karate (recently won a blue belt).  Maria says that Rylan likes chemistry (mixing chemicals), so it seems that he has a scientific bent.

He is my precious little grandson.


Update on David’s infected leg

February 8, 2019


David’s right leg looks pink now.  (Feb. 7, 2019)


David went to the ER at Straub Clinic on Sunday, January 27, because his right leg was infected.  He received an IV of two antibiotics.  He was sent home with a prescription for three oral antibiotics.  As of Thursday, February 7, his leg is no longer bright red; it looks pink.  David will see his primary care physician, Dr. Loui, on Monday, February 11 for evaluation.  Hopefully, he won’t have to continue with more antibiotic treatment.

Presently, his nightly regimen at the gym includes spending time on the recumbent bike, the treadmill, the strength machines, the sauna and the steam room.  I told him to avoid the swimming pool and the hot tub, because he might pick up bacteria that the chlorine might not kill right away.

One of David’s acquaintances spent a week in the hospital due to a leg infection.  He was between jobs and did not have health insurance.  The hospital billed him $20,000.

David is lucky, because he has Humana HMO (a Medicare Advantage plan).  He does not have to pay a monthly premium, and his co-payments are affordable.

Tax refund and other matters

February 6, 2019

We bought ferns from Home Depot yesterday.  They are similar to Boston ferns and are hanging next to the Asparagus ferns we bought last year.  Hawaiian Ti plants are growing beneath the ferns:


I considered hiring a carpenter to install a trellis in our patio so that we could sit in the shade.  But, I decided not to.  I like sitting in the sun, absorbing Vitamin D naturally to boost bone density.  Besides, the sky is our canopy, and it’s nice to see the neighbor’s trees, which provide some shade anyway.  That’s our covered gas grill on the left.  We slapped steaks on the grill last week, when the weather was nice:


David did our taxes yesterday, and we will be getting a refund.  We are waiting for Lisa to email us her documents, so that David can do her taxes.  Hopefully, she will receive a refund, too.  We will then give Maria our Turbo Tax software, so she won’t have to buy her own.

Forestalling dementia

February 4, 2019

My mother had dementia when she died at age 99.  My father never had dementia at all, but died of colon cancer at age 87.  I hope I can prevent dementia and cancer and still live a long life.

I find that being creative is what matters most to me.  I think it’s one way to forestall dementia.  I write a blog, play the violin, and experiment with food in the kitchen.  So, if I end up with dementia, it will mean that being creative did not prevent that awful condition.

As for cancer, who knows?

I practice my violin in the guest room:


I store my violin on top of my bedroom dresser:


I am 73.  Let’s see how long I’ve got.