Sunday Afternoon 1/17/2016

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Brett and I headed up to the north shore on Friday afternoon to check out the big surf that was rolling in. We turned off for Anini Beach Park, and the above view, taken on the road in to the Park and looking south toward the Kilauea lighthouse, was nothing short of breathtaking. Big surf was an understatement – it was more like massive surf. Waves breaking against the rocks and cliffs sent spray high into the air, and looking out to sea it would seem that mountains of water would rise up and then topple over, again and again. Anini has a large reef that protects the beach so thankfully all we experienced were small ripples breaking on the shore. By the way, at the beach closest to our house on the east side the ocean was as smooth as can be – not a swell in sight. There were lots of surfers sitting out in the water but there were no waves for them to catch. All the action was up to the north. (I apologize for the clarity of the above photo – I forgot to grab my camera and had to use my phone.)

We also had another one of those “only on Kaua’i experiences” while we were there. Brett and I had been sitting at one of the picnic tables at the park enjoying the view when we  thought we heard the pop of a champagne cork. We both figured though that we were imagining things. However, we were soon invited over to share a glass of champagne with the woman sunbathing just a short distance from our table. She had been expecting a friend, but the friend couldn’t make it so she invited us over, introduced herself and offered us a “Hawaiian mimosa”(champagne with mango juice). We accepted her offer and visited for a while before it was time to leave and head back for home. We did stop in Kilauea our way back south for a pineapple frosty at Banana Joe’s and a chance to talk story  for a little while with Joe, the perfect ending to an absolutely lovely afternoon!

Today is YaYu’s 16th birthday! I almost can’t believe our “baby” will be old enough to drive this year, and will be entering her junior year of high school in the fall. She and WenYu are walking down into town today to window shop and eat, but we gave her some cash for her birthday gift so they can enjoy themselves. YaYu is a saver though – I’m pretty sure she already has a savings goal in mind and while the money will be appreciated most of it will be quickly tucked away before they leave the house.

This afternoon I am:

  • Reading: I finished Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up in two days at the beginning of the week. I loved the “Japanese-ness” of it, and was inspired to do some more tidying up around here. Brett and I filled two large shopping bags of books we’ve finished and clothing that we don’t wear any more, and we’re going to do a bit more tidying before we haul our stuff down to a nearby church that’s holding a rummage sale next weekend. Currently I’m reading A God Among Ruins by Kate Atkinson. I read Life After Life by her last year, which I thought was brilliant, and this book carries on with the same characters.
  • Listening to: The girls are in the kitchen fixing their favorite ramen bowls before they head off into town. The birds are chirping away outside but otherwise it’s a typical quiet Sunday around here.
  • Watching: More Downton Abbey tonight for WenYu and me. Is it just me or does it seem like the episodes are moving very fast this year? Brett and I are down to the last three episodes of Murdoch Mysteries – I frankly can’t wait until they’re done.
  • Cooking/baking: Dinner tonight is Killer Noodle Salad (with added fried tofu for me, shrimp for everyone else), followed by the red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting that I’ll be baking this afternoon.
  • Happy that I accomplished this past week: I am very proud of myself for not missing a day on the exercise bicycle, with a ride every morning and another one in the evening. Riding the bike has allowed me to sleep in a little later in the morning – it’s still plenty cool at the front of the garage when I get up at around 7:00 or so. Not my accomplishment other than to remind (nag) her to get them done, but WenYu turned in her final college application. We’re all feeling very relieved that this process is over. Of course, now she’s got a couple of scholarship applications to work on. It never ends.
  • Looking forward to this week: Getting my hair cut! I gave my December appointment to Meiling, so am way overdue for a cut and it’s been driving me crazy!
  • Grateful for: I have been feeling very thankful lately that I know how to cook. And, that I was introduced to and learned to like a variety of cuisines and flavors when I was young so that almost nothing is off-limits for me. I enjoy going out to eat, but I also enjoy cooking and eating at home, and it’s saved us an incredible amount of money over the years. I’m very, very thankful that Brett and all the girls have very few, if any, food limits. The only somewhat-picky eater in the family is our son, and he still does pretty well, considering.
  • Bonus question: What’s your favorite meal to eat out at a restaurant? These days I especially love going out for breakfast. My favorite breakfast meal is Eggs Benedict, but that’s currently forbidden because it’s definitely not vegan! I also love going out for a good hamburger. We don’t eat out very often, but we’re lucky to have two great burger restaurants here on the island, Duane’s Ono Char-Burger and Street Burger. They’re very different types of places: Duane’s is a little no-frills roadside stand on the way to the north shore, and Street Burger is a more upscale restaurant serving gourmet burgers. Both these places are also off limits for me right now, but I’m pretty sure I’ll be eating at one or the other sometime again in the future.

I hope you are all enjoying a lovely Sunday afternoon, and had a great week, with another good one coming up.

And now Brett and I are off to the beach . . . it’s a beautiful day!!

8 thoughts on “Sunday Afternoon 1/17/2016

  1. Jen says:

    We are having huge surf on the California coast as well. I love to walk the beaches at low tide this time of year and see what the powerful surf has washed up.

    Do your girls add anything special to their Ramen bowls? My teenage daughter loves Top Ramen, and I wonder if that is what you are talking about. We add peas at times, but that is about it. Would they share their recipe, if there is one?

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    • Laura says:

      The girls always add greens to the bottom of their bowl and then pour the hot ramen and broth over the greens to “cook” them. Their favorite is bok choy but they also like spinach and kale. If we have leftover meat they will sometimes add that, or a hard-cooked egg, to the top. They only eat ramen once a week though because of the sodium content, but if that wasn’t so high I think they’d eat ramen every day. They’re noodle-aholics! Oh – they used to eat Top Ramen, but now love Sapporo Ichiban. It costs a little more, but they say it has a much better flavor. It’s the original packaged ramen from Japan – I know it’s been around since the 1960s, and is the favorite brand here in Hawai’i.

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      • Jen says:

        That sounds delicious and easy with the greens, leftover meat and egg. After I asked for your recipe I asked Mr. Google and found so many good Ramen recipes, but will try your girl’s first. And the Sapporo Ichiban. I looked it up on Amazon and it is about 4 times as much as Top Ramen. Still so cheap, though! Too bad about the sodium and MSG, though.

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    • Laura says:

      Sapporo Ichiban also has way too much sodium and MSG (which is unfortunately a given in most Japanese foods), which is why the girls only have it once a week. But, they say the flavor is way better than Top Ramen.

      Not every place I shopped back on the mainland carried Sapporo Ichiban and it was always way more expensive than Top or Nissin brands. Here it’s not only cheap, but I can buy it by the case at Costco!

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