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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Wonderful Family Sunday

Aloha Everyone,

It was still chilly when my son and I went on our morning walk. Both of our sons are taller than J.J  That means they have so much longer strides than me. Our older son, in particular, walks as if he is slicing the air in front of him. He is very fast and I have to throttle to keep up with him.

There are many benefits to early morning walks. Air is cool and fresh, some flowers are beginning to open. The 3 miles walk took us less than an hour.

We spent a relaxing day at home.

For lunch, J.J. prepared steamed salmon seasoned with lemon, onion and capers.

And for dinner, he made roast lamb.  

Tossed green salad with avocado and blue cheese is one of the specialties of our daughter-in-law.

Aloha -- Cathi

Saturday, May 30, 2015

My New iPad Air

Aloha Everyone,

Happiness is to be able to see what I am typing and writing without use of a magnifying glasses in addition to my reading glasses.
I purchased an iPad Air today! The iPad WiFi 16GB was $399.00 plus $3 advance recycling fee (?) and 8% tax and the total $433.92. 

I will try to learn the usage of my new device via online tutorials but at some point, I will make appointments to attend the Genius Bar at one or more Apple Stores around the country. Any hints and suggestions regarding iPad and syncing data with my iPhone is welcome.

Aloha -- Cathi

Friday, May 29, 2015

Kampgrounds of America (KOA) - Chula Vista

Aloha Everyone,

J.J. and I just became members of  Kampgrounds of America (KOA). KOA, is the world's largest system of privately held campgrounds with nearly 500 locations across United States and Canada. The company was founded in 1962 and their mission is, "really all about making outdoor adventure easy."

The KOA park we selected for our overnight stay is located in Chula Vista, CA less than 12 miles north of the border with Mexico.

Established in 1968, this campground is beautifully manicured with large mature trees offering lots of shades and private spaces for individual campers.

It is definitely a family-friendly place and offers great amenities including a swimming pool and spa, playground, recreation room, bicycle rentals, rock climbing wall, and a trampoline.

We even saw a tractor offering hayrides.

In addition to RV camping sites, this particular KOA location also offers tent sites, 1-room and 2-room cabins, and deluxe cabins with their own kitchen, shower and toilet. The deluxe cabins can accommodate up to 6 adults. 

J.J. and I were impressed with this facilities that we plan to bring our granddaughter with us on our next visit.

Aloha --Cathi

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Truth About Living in Honu

Aloha Everyone,

J.J. and I are now entering into month 14 of living in Honu. Our friends ask us what is it really like to live in a small space, less than an average size studio in the United States and to be constantly in each other's company.

Here is the truth about living in Honu.

Truth Number One: It helps that J.J. and I are best friends, and being best friends means that we understand each other. We know when to talk, when to keep silent, when to joke around and when to mind our own business. We truly enjoy each other's company, but we also respect each other's emotional space.

Truth Number Two:  Accept uncertainty. Just less than 10 days ago, J.J. and I were driving the areas of Oklahoma and Texas that have since been traumatized by severe weather -- heavy rains, tornadoes and flooding. While we cannot always be prepared for what lies ahead, we are prepared for uncertainty. This means uncertainty in weather, road conditions as well as possible social unrest.  

Truth Number Three:  Be Mindful. Whether we are on the road or deciding our place to spend the night, J.J. and I are always mindful. We research ahead to see if there are things we should be aware of which could impact our personal safety and enjoyment.

Truth Number Four:  Maintain flexibility. Our schedules are flexible. J.J. and I have a general idea as to which direction we would be traveling. However countless times, our schedules have changed based on the weather, on news reports or just because we looked towards the East and it looked more inviting than towards the West. When asked, we tell our fellow travelers, "We go where trade winds take us."

Truth Number Five:  Maintain simplicity. Simplifying our life style is one of the keys to our happiness. With exceptions to items we are keeping in a 5' x 5' locker in Hawaii and a suitcase where we have our formal clothes, J.J. and I carry all our personal belongings with us. Honu is truly like a turtle that carry our home and all the things we need.

Truth Number Six: Staying in touch with family and friends. This is one of the important aspects of being happy.  We don't need material possessions. We have escaped from consumerism. We don't need bigger space to live, faster cars, latest fashion clothes, or state-of-the-art technology. What we cherish is our family and old friends. New friends we make along the way share similar ideas and aspiration about living uncomplicated, uncluttered, simple life.

Truth Number Seven: With our new found life-style, we have less stress, more energy, more time and more joy and contentment.

"The richest man is not the one who has the most, but the one who needs the least". - Anonymous Buddhist Quote

Aloha -- Cathi

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Star Anise Thai Cuisine

Aloha Everyone,

I absolutely love Thai food. Historically, Thailand was one of the main crossroads between South Asia and East Asia and therefore was heavily influenced by both Asian and Chinese cooking. However, Thai cuisine also has elements of Persian, Arabian, Cambodian, Laotian, Vietnamese and Malaysian flavors as well.

In nearly every sizable cities in the United States, J.J. and I have found restaurants that specialize in Thai cuisine. Last night in celebration of our daughter-in-law's birthday, we dined at Star Anise. All of us had a wonderful time and the food was superb.

Cream cheese puff

Vegetarian spring rolls

Tom yum soup with shrimp being served

Tom yum soup with shrimp

Pad see ew noodle - one with beef and one with chicken

Mad saman gai

Yellow curry with tofu

Roasted duck curry

Fried banana

Aloha -- Cathi

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Back to La Jolla (San Diego) California

Aloha Everyone,

It took us 6 1/2 hours of driving from Las Vegas to San Diego, California. Except for an accident slow down involving three cars on I-15 South just outside of downtown Las Vegas, our drive was nothing extraordinary. Here is my photo journal of today's travel.

Tonight we are safe and happy back on La Jolla with our family and our granddaughter.

Aloha -- Cathi