Sunday Afternoon 5/21/2017

The view from my beach chair on Saturday

This weekend is all about the beach. We spent a couple of hours there yesterday – blue skies, light breeze, warm water and beautiful views – perfect! WenYu and I spent a nice amount of time in the water while we were there, jumping through and diving under the waves and swimming. Today is just as lovely as yesterday, so as soon as this is posted we’re heading back down the hill for another couple of hours, maybe longer. Both Brett and I really look like tourists right now though – I’m pale as a ghost, and Brett has tan lines around his neck and on his arms from wearing a t-shirt when he walks every day. We also carry a ton of stuff with us when we go: umbrella, chairs, towels, beach mat, and a big bag of drinks and snacks.

Another view from my chair

I had an absolutely wonderful, perfect day last Sunday – Brett and YaYu took care of absolutely everything, all day long, and Brett made Scotch eggs (hard-cooked eggs coated in sausage and cooked) for our dinner – they were amazing! They were so good in fact that we plan to have them again next weekend, and will put them into regular rotation on the menu. Anyway, Brett and YaYu knocked my joint birthday-Mother’s Day celebration out of the park!

And, WenYu is home! I am in my happy place getting to see and talk with her every day. She’ll be hitting the pavement tomorrow though to see if she can find a job. I don’t have any doubts that she’ll find something soon – she has restaurant (wait staff) experience, good recommendations, and interviews well.

Anyway, this afternoon I am:

  • Reading: I’m nearly half-way through My Name Is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout, and greatly enjoying it. It was rated one of the best books of 2016, and I can see why – it’s beautifully written.
  • Listening to: It’s been very quiet here so far today, with nothing going on outside in the neighborhood other than lots of birds are singing. The chickens aren’t even making any noise today. I can hear the girls chatting and laughing back in their room, but Brett is out on his daily walk so it’s quiet out here in the front of the house. We did the laundry yesterday afternoon, so that isn’t spoiling the quiet today either.
  • Watching: Brett and I watched the most recent episodes of Midsomer Murders, and are now watching Better Call Saul – we loved the character on Breaking Bad, and the show is great. I finished up all the Great British Bake Off Masterclass episodes, so WenYu and I are now watching old episodes of Househunters on Hulu. Why and how any of these couples managed to get and stay married almost puts this show into the mystery genre as well – nobody likes the same thing, and they bicker quite a bit. Brett and I watched Manchester By the Sea on Friday evening (free via Amazon Prime) – such a beautiful, bittersweet film. I saw it on the plane on the way over to Japan and was happy to watch it again, but Brett hadn’t seen it before.
  • Cooking/baking:  It was everyone for themselves this morning when it came to breakfast: ramen with bok choy and ham for the girls, oatmeal for Brett and I had my usual yogurt with berries along with a sprinkle of Anahola Granola. I’m fixing Chinese stir-fried tomatoes and eggs for dinner tonight – WenYu has never had them, and we all think she will love this egg dish. Everyone but me will have steamed rice, and we’ll all enjoy some crisp, cool cucumbers to go with our eggs. No baking today – I made an orange bundt cake yesterday evening, after it had cooled off.
  • Happy I accomplished this past week: I’m glad we got our food shopping done for the next month (six weeks actually this time) – we had run out of so much. Our big shops are always a  chore, but so nice to have a full fridge, pantry and freezer again. I made my Swagbucks small goal every day this week, and the large goal twice even though Swagbucks has raised that to a nearly-impossible amount. I have pretty much had to give up my afternoon bike ride because of the heat, and the morning ride on a couple of days as well – it’s just too humid, and I know if I push myself to do it there’s a good chance I will end up stopping riding all together (which is what has happened in the past). But, if I skipped a ride I added a bit more time in the evening, drank my eight glasses of water a day and then some, and did my language study every day.
  • Looking forward to this week: Friday is YaYu’s last day of school for this year, and she will finally get to stand down for a while – it’s been an intense year. No more school lunches, wacky schedules, etc. for us as well for a couple of months – yeah! Otherwise, there’s nothing on the calendar for us – our time is our own. Maybe we’ll get to go to the beach again!

    YaYu’s sports letter with yearly pins
  • Thinking of good things that happened: YaYu lettered in four sports this past year (cross country, swimming, track & field and tennis) and this past week not only was awarded the pins for her letter, but also earned an official windbreaker from the school. WenYu brought home a few of the KitKats we sent to her (in limited flavors), so I’ve been once again enjoying a single KitKat with a cup of coffee after dinner – yum! Although it’s been hot and humid, for the most part we’ve had absolutely gorgeous weather this past week, and other than for one short period in the middle of the week the trade winds have consistently been  blowing.
  • Grateful for: My daughter-in-law has been sending regular videos and photos of our grandson and granddaughter, and this week I got to watch them play together (adorable!) and see our granddaughter just about take off crawling – she’s almost there. I am so thankful for all the photos and the little films, for my daughter-in-law sending them and for the technology that makes them possible.

    Enjoying each other’s company
  • Bonus question: If you were told you could keep just one of your possessions, what would you choose? After some discussion, both Brett and I agreed we would keep our cell phones – we can talk with, message and email each other, our children, and friends; take and keep photos; surf the Internet; manage our money; play games; keep blogging; and take care of lots of other tasks on these little devices as long as we continue to pay our phone bill every month. Before smartphones were around though my choice would have been the coffeemaker. “I get up in the morning because I know there will be coffee” was my motto for a long time.

And that’s what’s been going on at Casa Aloha. How was your week? What did you accomplish? What good things happened for you?


9 thoughts on “Sunday Afternoon 5/21/2017

    1. Good choice! Neither of us currently has a tablet though, so phones it is for us. We can download and read books on our phones, even though they’re kind of small.


  1. Loved Lucy Barton and I’m looking forward to reading her newest, which is apparently the predecessor to Lucy. And Manchester by the Sea. What a movie. It is still with me long after I watched it.

    Hard to argue with the smart phone…it just does everything, doesn’t it? And I join you in your gratitude for the technology and loving DIL that shares pics. We have one, too, and we’re SO grateful for her and the grands.

    I’m tickled that my retired DH has reconnected with some old college friends at a reunion and discovered some live near us. He’s been invited to join them golfing on Wednesdays, which is something he’s wanted to do. Since he sold his sailboat, he’s been looking for another summer outlet and has found it. And I have more time alone, which is a challenge with both of us retired in a not-so-big house. 🙂

    This week I finally bought our tickets to tour Fallingwater and Kentuck Knob this summer…we’re looking forward to this, as it’s been on our bucket list for a while.


    1. I would definitely be interested in reading a prequel to Lucy Barton – Strout writes so beautifully, and is such a pleasure to read. Manchester By the Sea made Brett sigh at the end, which hasn’t happened in a long time, and we are still talking about it. It does stay with you.

      My D-I-L sent a little movie last night of our granddaugter eating pumpkin. ADORABLE. She is growing up so fast, so we’re absolutely thrilled to receive these little vignettes.

      I would love to visit Fallingwater (and any other Wright house I could). Lucky you!


  2. I had a meaningful weekend. I volunteered at a BBQ for Wounded Warriors, helping out in the kitchen. I do this every year and it’s very gratifying. The veterans had just been released from Walter Reed and were in the area doing some sightseeing sponsored by a local VFW post.

    It’s funny how high schools do the varsity letter thing differently. At my nephew’s school, they get the large cloth letter every time they letter in a sport, so he has a bunch of them. I think I like the pin idea better.


    1. Good for you – what a terrific volunteer opportunity. And, as much as you think the veterans enjoyed the event, is was probably much, much more than you imagine. Thank you!

      At the girls’ high school back in Portland, only the top performers received a letter, so there were people on the teams who participated all four years and received no recognition whatsoever. At my high school, back in the day, juniors and senior were automatically considered “varsity” and received letters, even if they weren’t superstars. Here, if you participate you receive a letter – period. So, you get the letter once, and then earn the pins each year for participation. I like this system – everyone is considered a valued team member.


      1. Yes, the vets definitely were very appreciative. Before we had the BBQ, a local town had a parade for them and they were obviously very moved at the reception they were getting. I imagine after battling through horrific injuries and wondering what the future holds, it must be a relief to finally be out of the hospital and back to some form of normalcy, so whatever small part I can play in facilitating that, I’m happy to do it.

        At my high school, you didn’t get a letter unless you played in a certain number of games/events. At my nephew’s school, it’s the same thing, so someone could be on the varsity team yet not get a letter. I like YaYu’s school’s way of doing it.


    1. I envy you your pool – how wonderful that you have this option now for hot days (and it can get HOT there in California).

      I’ll be you are happy to see the soccer season wind down for a while! We’re all looking forward to a break from YaYu’s crazy, busy schedule for a while.


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