Sunday Afternoon 5/1/2016


Brett and I are thrilled to announce that our son and daughter-in-law are expecting a girl in October! We were already excited about our trip to Japan next spring to see all of them, but now we are doubly so. Our grandson is happy and excited about having a baby sister, although he did mention he would have preferred a baby brother.

We actually learned they were expecting on our final day in Arizona last month (but were asked not to say anything until after our son and daughter-in-law were ready to announce, which happened this weekend). We were on our way that evening to meet friends and faithful readers Lori and Todd for dinner, but somehow got ourselves headed the wrong direction on the freeway. I went to check my phone to try to figure out how to turn ourselves around, and saw a message from my son – I had recently sent him a message that we had gotten our hotel reservation at the Sanno and would be coming to Japan next spring. When I read his news I screamed (with joy!) and nearly sent Brett careening across several lanes of traffic!

Two scruffy-looking locals drinking coffee
Two scruffy-looking locals drinking coffee

We’ve had another busy, but productive week. Brett and I were stuck at home for a couple of days awaiting the arrival of the new computer and my new phone, but we finally got out on Friday to visit the Kauai Coffee Company and another couple of spots on the south shore. Afterwards we enjoyed an inexpensive but tasty lunch of Hawaiian-style hot dogs and fresh lemonade at Puka Dog in Poipu. Puka means ‘hole’ in Hawaiian – hot dog rolls are toasted from the inside on a special stick, then a Polish sausage or veggie dog is inserted into the hole along with tropical relishes and mustard. Delicious! Their lemonade is pretty darn good too.

There's almost always a line at Puka Dogs!
There’s almost always a line at Puka Dogs!

One more thing: There’ll be a small surprise coming this week – stay tuned!

Anyway, this afternoon I am:

  • Reading: I finally finished Over the Edge, and Brett is reading it now. I started a new book about living and traveling in India, Holy Cow, and am tearing through it.
  • Listening to: The washing machine and dryer humming in the background. Because of the capacity of our new machine, I have gotten our laundry down to just four loads per week! The girls are quietly studying in their room for now – AP testing begins this week – but YaYu’s study group arrives in just a few minutes.
  • Watching: Brett and I watched the Ken Burns series on the national parks (shown on PBS Hawaii) this past week, but tonight it’s Call the Midwife, Grantchester and Mr. Selfridge again for me. Next week Brett and I will get back into The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, but I also want to check out The Americans – Amazon Prime has three seasons up and it’s supposed to be very good.
  • Cooking/baking: I made brownies this morning for YaYu’s study group and the girls’ lunches this week. Otherwise we still have too many sweets around, including some of the banana cream pie I made this last week to use up bananas that were ripening quickly. Dinner tonight is turkey divan casserole; I’m going to have some lentil soup, bread and broccoli.
  • Happy I accomplished last week: I got all sorts of odd little jobs done around the house that I had been procrastinating about. They’ll be back, but for now I’m glad they’re done.
  • Looking forward to next week: I’m getting my hair cut tomorrow – yeah! I am starting to develop the “old lady pouf” again and it needs to go away. And, maybe, just maybe, Brett and I will be able to get to the beach one day this week.
  • Thinking about good things that happened this week: I made hotel and rental car reservations for WenYu and I in Natick, so all that’s left is to figure out the ground transportation between the airport and our hotel (I will take the bus back out the airport). My new phone works perfectly and I can now call and text from inside the house. We put $11.01 in the change/$1 bill jar, and I got in two sessions each day on the exercise bike. YaYu also picked out a fantastic movie that we watched together on Friday: Hector and the Search for Happiness. I highly recommend it!
  • Grateful for: I’m feeling thankful that after nearly two years here Kaua’i continues to enchant me. It feels like home, and yet it’s still an adventure to head out to other parts of the island.
  • Bonus question: What National Parks have you visited? Which is your favorite? Until I sat down and made a list, I didn’t realize I had been to so many, some more than once: Yosemite, Joshua Tree, Lassen Peak, Crater Lake, Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Zion, Carlsbad Caverns, Mesa Verde, Rocky Mountain, Yellowstone, Everglades, Shenandoah, and Acadia National Parks as well as several monuments in Washington, D.C., and the Golden Gate Bridge Recreational Area which are part of the National Park System. So far, there’s a three-way tie going on between Yosemite, Grand Canyon and Zion for which is my favorite national park. There are many more I would love to visit, and high on my list are Glacier, Rainier, Olympic, Sequoia, Grand Teton, Canyonlands, Arches and Great Smoky National Parks. I’d love to visit Acadia NP again as well. And, I’d also like to visit Denali in Alaska, and Banff National Park in Canada.

That’s it for this week! How did your week go? What good things happened for you? And how did May get here so quickly?

(And yes, I was bored and decided to freshen things up a bit.)

6 thoughts on “Sunday Afternoon 5/1/2016

  1. Glad to hear your happy news! I am really impressed by your national parks list. I hope you do get to Banff and Glacier. They are spectacular. Equally impressed that you only have to do 4 loads of washing a week now 😉


    1. Thanks! We are over the moon, and very excited that it’s a girl this time!

      Brett and I have talked about doing both Banff and Glacier in one trip. The beauty of Banff just blows me away, and we’d like to see Glacier NP while there is still at least one glacier left, or at least a piece of one.


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