Friday, July 31, 2009

Thursday's Tidbits

Better late than never!!!! It's still Thursday in the states so I'm counting it!! It is amazing how Thursday can come and go and I have no idea what happened!!!

Last Thursday we watched "New In Town" with Renee Z. (long last name that I can't remember how to spell). Harry Conick Jr. was in it, too, and they were good together. Very funny movie and it's clean - as long as you don't mind the Minnesota accent!!! (JK)

Friday I was still feeding Socks a bland diet as she got "sick" while I was away and left me a "treat" to clean up when I got home. No more details and definately no pictures for your viewing pleasure - or displeasure!!! Worked on a scrapbooking project with a friend, met my part-time neighbor who has a permanent yard sale every Friday and Saturday. Nice to have finally met Miyoko-san. We enjoyed our favorite Thai restaurant (aka The Noodle Shop that Richard the Cook works at) with the Harringtons. I "do" ministry with Ginger and Bill knows Mark from work and golf. I also posted my interview with Ginger last week in Thursday's Tidbits. She has been a very popular post of mine, receiving some really fun comments!!!! I spent most of Saturday morning trying to SKYPE with the Mulroy clan and I managed to sneak a peek at the 4 small family members a few times in between being disconnected. Gotta love modern technology!!! Dinner with our Saturday Night Crew at Arin Krin - greatest garlic place in the world.

Tomatoe dish with yummy garlic sauce. I didn't try this, of course, but I hear it was great!

Sunday brought my introduction into Farm Town on Facebook and I will never be the same. If you do not have a Facebook account then you won't understand what Farm Town is or why we are all obsessed. If you have a Facebook account my words to you are as follows "Don't DO IT!" It's an obsession and you won't be able to quit!!!! (Off my soapbox now!) This was our second Sunday in a row that we didn't make it to Calvary - ugh!!!! Bill wasn't feeling well and I had a blast chatting on the phone and creating my farm on Farm Town!!! Thanks Kim!!!! We managed to watch two movies, in between my new obsession with farming. We saw "21", the card-counting movie, and it was good. We also watched "Appaloosa" with Vigo M. (another long name I can't spell) and Ed Harris. I didn't like Appaloosa as well. If I don't like the ending then it ruins the whole movie for me.

Monday I joined my partner-in-crime (PIC), Dasha, for a quick ride up to Nago to investigate a restaurant that we call "Hello Kitty". This actually might be the real name and once I get all the info and it's posted by said PIC, on Okinawa Hai, I will let you know. This is what I do know: The food is good and everything is pink and decorated with Hello Kitty. Even the outgoing message on their phone line is Hello Kitty speaking in her best Japanese. I started outlining a great book on leadership for an upcoming, local Leadership Conference I will be attending and training at. Looking forward to it and, again, I will share more details with you later. Are you just dying with suspense??????????? One fun food note: We enjoyed a Dragonfruit sorbet at an Italian restaurant at the Jusco in "downtown" Nago. Dasha has the picture or I would post it here. No worries, just know that it was fun to eat and left our tongues purple - briefly!

Tuesday is always PWOC day. We only had 6 of us in class today but, as usual, God still shows up and our conversations are always good!!! One of our ladies had her 5th child and though Matthew was almost 2 months early both he and mom are doing well. Congrats Kristal!!! Her picture is on a previous Thursday's Tidbits - way back when!!!

He was born on Thursday, July 23rd @ 4:26 am, weighing 4 lb 5 oz via c-section. He is in the NICU and they anticipate keeping him 3-4 weeks. He was born at almost 33 weeks gestation and so far he's been a superstar, breathing on his own, very little oxygen requirements, trying to regulate his own internal temperature, etc. He is a little jaundiced and is under the bili lights, but that was to be expected with his prematurity. Please pray that he continues to stay strong and that any setbacks we face will be minor.

Harue, one of my mamasans, showed up this particular Wednesday with a gift. She is incredibly creative and must stay busy all the time. She had made small dresses out of two hand towels for my kitchen. One of the many perks of living in Okinawa!!! We actually enjoyed a meal at home today with Bill firing up the grill and making us personal, grilled pizzas. Yummy!!! We are continuing our James Bond marathon with 9 DVDs or Blu-Rays arriving in the mail today. We watched "Die Another Day" with Pierce B. as JB and Jada P.-Smith as the "Bond-Girl"!!!! I was asked by my friend Dian "Who is your favorite James Bond?" Not an easy question - do you have a favorite?

I hope your week was as exciting as mine!!! See you next Thursday!!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Thursday's Tidbits

This past Thursday was a jam-packed day that was mostly fun and definitely productive. I started interviewing my friend, Ginger, for an extra post I did for Okinawa Hai this week. This was far more challenging than I thought it would be but it was so worth it. We had a girl's night out that started at Chili's and ended at the movie theatre. I watched the new Sandra Bullock movie, "The Proposal", for the second time this month and it was even funnier the second time around.
I did not know Ginger well last year at our Marine Corps ball but I knew she would be a fun friend to have.

Friday was spent on Kadena with Ginger, again, continuing the interview process, with lunch squeezed in the middle. Our Friday night was spent watching "The Happening", with Mark Whalberg, and we don't recommend it. It was crazy and creepy with no real explanation of what happened? In our house we have a tradition that if we didn't like the movie of the night we always follow it up with a Traquair Favorite - tonight's was "Sweet Home Alabama" with Reese Witherspoon!

Saturday Bill had a later tee time so we cruised and he made us breakfast. I continued to work on my interview while Bill worked on his golf swing. We are now in a James Bond phase so we watched "Casino Royale" and "Quantum of Solace". We realized that we don't have as many James Bond movies as we thought so they'll be some ordering on-line going on later this week.

Sunday found us being lazy and needing a day home together. We skipped church and watched movies most of the day. We saw "Revolutionary Road" with Leonardo Di Caprio and Kate Winslet. I don't think I would recommend this one, either. I hated the ending and most of the movie was depressing. Then we continued our James Bond marathon by watching some old classics - "Dr. No" and "Octopussy". I don't think I've seen either of them.

Our Sunday ended on a very sad note. My mom called from the states to tell me that my grandfather had passed away - Saturday night in the states. This was not totally unexpected as he has been in the hospital or a rehab facility for over a month. And he had lived to be almost 93. I'm sad mostly because he lived this great and vivacious life up until the past few years when he seemed to always be ill. Also, his marriage to his second wife was a source of heartache in our family. His death reminds me of my grandmother, who died while we were stationed in Okinawa last time. It's hard when you are so far way, even if there is nothing you could have done or nothing you would have done differently. Though I wish I would have seen more of him while we lived in California I do have so many fond memories of spending my childhood with both of my grandparents. My goal is to write a complete post on my grandparents sometime over the weekend.
Monday found me feverishly working to complete my "To Work" post on Ginger to meet my Tuesday morning deadline. I stayed home most of the day so I could also join Bill at the movies. We saw "The Soloist" with Robert Downey Jr. and Jamie Fox. I really thought this was going to be a tear-jerker and I was really surprised that I didn't cry more. Especially since I have been so emotional lately. It was a good movie, based on a true story and very intense. I walked away from the story reminded that we just need to be "a friend" to people - we can't cure them, fix them, or force them to lead a life we want them to lead. We just need to walk along side and love them as they take their own journey - as painful as that can be. The past few years have taught me that some relationships require more work than others but they are really worth it. We have to decide to be all in and then "do life" - with all of it's sticky, complicated, frustrating elements that may never go away. That's how God intended it - He never promised us a rose garden. He only promised to be there for us, loving and guiding us and commanding us to love others.

This is just a random photo of two of my sweet stateside friends who "do life" with me!

Tuesday is PWOC day and our summer studies are going well. I love the study we are doing on the Fruit of the Spirit and this week was on Peace. God's timing is always so perfect - offering just the scriptures we need right when we need them. After our study we usually go out to lunch and I have found a new favorite - Fertile. This French bistro serves up yummy dishes with homemade soup, a tiny salad, your choice of hot/cold tea or coffee with dessert all for Y1,300. Check out the hyper link - it's worth the read. I finally posted my contribution to Joelle's "To Work" category and I loved how it came out - with all the typos an amateur writer could include. I loved seeing Ginger's life in words and the pictures she gave me completed the post - painting a great picture of her family. Thanks, Ginger, for being my victim and spending so much time with me.
My friend, Jana, is our worship leader for PWOC and my scrap booking buddy!
Wednesday I was scrap booking at Jana's with Ginger and Kim while trying to view the Solar Eclipse. We didn't really "see" the view that a lot of people saw and captured with their cameras but it was fun trying. Great day with girlfriends!!! In the evening we watched "The Code" with Morgan Freeman and Antonio Banderas. A typical heist movie that really didn't offer anything new. Not bad but glad we rented it instead of trying to see it at the movie theatre!

See you next Thursday!!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Thursday's Tidbits

Thursday found me doing something many of you would be surprised by - I actually made lunch and ate at home. This is highly unusual as I eat out almost 2 meals a day. Not sure why I don't love to cook but I don't and that's a reality I'm willing to live with - at least for now. But, when I have people coming over to my place to hang out my hostess vibe comes alive and I feel compelled to do the one thing I detest more than going to the dentist - cooking!!! My friend and Okinawa Hai Partner-In-Crime (PIC), Dasha, came over to spend a few hours helping me rearrange my photo folders and learn me how to use Photobucket. I knew we'd need to eat and so I planned ahead - 1st thing that I hate about cooking. UGH - you have to plan and then go to the grocery store - second thing I hate about cooking. Since I had recently visited the US of A I had a great idea - I would make Gloria's fabulous BLT's without the T. See, I'm allergic to vegetables, my mom swears I'm not, and so out goes the T for tomatoe and in it's place comes the A for avocado. Now don't even tell me that an avocado is a vegetable - I'm just not buying it. In my fantasy world this yumminess is just good and doesn't need to succumb to any one food group. Though I said I "planned" our lunch I didn't completely plan on the fact that our bacon was in the freezer. UGH!! Dasha offered up Taco Bell as a plan "b" but I was being stubborn and wanted to make a meal at home - if only to brag on this blog and in hopes of impressing you a little bit with my perseverance. Long story longer, I burned the first batch of bacon trying to thaw and cook at the same time. But the second batch turned out yummy, if I do say so myself. We enjoyed our BLT's, minus the T and add the A with a gorgeous view of the Tengan pier and the bluest water in the world. Fun, friendship and burnt bacon - what more could a non-cook ask for?

Dasha, my willing victim, getting ready to enjoy her lunch with a view!!!

I really do like my bacon crisp so I could say that I did this purposely!!!

Yummy BLT, minus the T!

Friday we attended a Hail and Farewell and I got a chance to meet some of the new people Bill works with. Once we returned home we watched "Miracle At St. Anna" and I wouldn't recommend it. The storyline had great potential but their were to many stories trying to be told and they really didn't come together for a great ending.

I attended a baby shower on Saturday with my friend Jana then met Bill at Awase Meadows Golf Course for lunch. This little outing made me miss the yummy chicken sandwiches they serve at the golf course in 29 Palms - why can't all golf courses serve the same yummy food???

As always, we joined our Saturday Night Crew for a fabulous dinner at Sam's By The Sea. We were celebrating Josh and Jenny's 1 year anniversary.

Happy anniversary couple, Josh and Jenny!

This is what happens after 15+ years of marriage!! My husband was hungry!!!

One of our many meals at Sam's!!!

We enjoyed a great Sunday worship service at Calvary and seeing friends from 29 Palms who just arrived on-island. We picked up our "surprise" in the afternoon and I held my breath as we introduced Nemo to Socks. They hit it off well and they seem to be getting into a fairly good routine. Nemo is keeping us entertained with his large-breed antics and his face always makes me smile. God truly spent a fair amount of time creating this unique breed of dog and the world is a better place for it. Nemo can be best described as an attention hound and with the mug only a mother could love, I just can't resist him. He gets his tongue stuck outside of his lips, like Socks does. One of my goals is to capture a picture of his right canine tooth - it gets caught up on his many layers of skin when he sits for a treat.

On Monday I spent a lot of time finishing my bible study and preparing to facilitate on Tuesday. This scrapbooking study has really inspired me to be more consistant in putting my memories in an album. After the normal chores of the day and dinner out of the way we watched "Defiance" with Daniel Craig (He played James Bond in Casino Royale) and Liev Schreiber (He was in both the Manchurian Candidate and Kate & Leopold). Defiance is an excellent movie but not without some brutal scenes! It is to be expected when you're watching a true story about a group of defiant refugees that persevere while being persecuted by the Germans!! I would highly recommend it!!!

Tuesday is one of my favorite days of the week. I love getting together with the women of PWOC. This week we discussed verses and questions regarding Joy as one of the Fruits of The Spirit. Drove home to check on my ever-growing four-legged family to make sure they survived their first day together without me. They did well and Nemo's happy dance that I am naming the "sidewinder" for now, which I have to get on video, makes me want to come home more often. Socks has become so calm in her elderly years so having Nemo around sure adds energy to our place. I love having a younger dog around - it seems to make the older dog young again. Socks use to do that for Belleau. After a brief stint at home I was off and running again to squeeze in a game of bunko with my favorite Army Wives. I played as a sub and had a blast. Our hostess, Roberta, is an excellent cook and we enjoyed some great Mexian Food! It was fun to meet a few new ladies and I ended the night as the BIG winner - I got both the floater prize and was the Queen of Bunkos.

I'm the bunko Queen!!!!

Wednesday I was met with a defiant four-legged child and the beginning of the battle with the kennel. I did not prepare myself for Nemo's dislike for the kennel that, in the near future, he will need to travel in for more than 20 hrs. I had less than 5 minutes to convince my new roommate that the kennel is his friend. I didn't have the heart or the energy to "make" this 70 lb. animal enter this contrapment that he found unappealing. Instead, Nemo and Socks spent half the day in our guest room to "save" the mamasans from being loved to death by a strange and large creature they do not know. When the hubs came home to offer a potty break to our critters he tried to convince Nemo to "kennel up" and he was having no part of it. Now Socks, on the other hand, still knows the command and entered and exited the kennel several times as we tried to coax Nemo into it just once. Socks is smart - she knows that if she goes in, once she comes out, she gets a treat. Now we just need to get that message to Nemo. And after all that coaxing Nemo was warn out and spent his day napping on my guest bed. Anyone want to come over to The House of Traquair and sleep with a 70lb. snoring beast that likes to wake up at 4:20 a.m.!!

See you next Thursday!!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Finding Nemo

Nemo is our surprise I promised to share in last week's post and I couldn't wait
until this Thursday to spill the beans!

Nemo's two biggest fans - the Hanson twins!!

Nemo's family, The Hansons, are pcsing this summer. Due to Nemo's breed and the heat conditions he is not able to join them right now. We only have custody of him temporarily until we find someone flying back to the states in September. Then he'll be reunited with his family in Cuba. Mike just recently retired from the Marine Corps and is taking a civilian job that will take the whole family to Cuba.

Here we are celebrating Valentine's Day with Mike and Toni Hanson at Sam's By The Sea!

Until then, he is a part of our family and Socks has taken to him well. I believe she is so use to having a large dog around that it's normal for her to have Nemo here. He is a 6 year old boxer, weighing in at around 70lbs. It's weird to have a large breed in the house again. Especially in this apartment where his size is highly noticeable in the kitchen, my office, the bathroom and on the stairs. He truly sticks out like a sore thumb!

He is getting use to our schedule and we are getting use to his interesting habits. He lays in different areas than Socks likes to lay, he doesn't like to pass her in the hallway so he'll wine until I get Socks to move. He breathes heavier than Socks and isn't a light sleeper. Whenever I move, he has to move. I know Socks does this when she is staying with our friends - I think it's normal in the beginning as they get to know their new surroundings!!!

Nemo does this "dance" when he gets excited - like he is trying to touch his nose to his tail. This picture doesn't do it justice but I love the tongue action!!!

All in all, it's going well with our new addition!!! I just tried to get a photo of the two of them together and it's just not working right now. Like herding cats or butterflies!!!! I'm sure there will be more Nemo stories to tell as the weeks pass by!!

See you Thursday!!!!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Thursday Tidbits

Last Thursday I took an adventurous trip to Motobu in search of a new restaurant to try. My driver was my friend, Dasha - a fly-by-the-seat-of-her-pants kind of gal. Without printing directions we headed out on our trip and soon figured out it's always best to have the correct name of a place before searching for it. Read her version of the story here - it's hysterical!

We found this restaurant in the Motobu Hills that served some out-of-the-ordinary items. I ordered the Beni-imo, Okinawan Purple Sweet Potatoe, soup which included whole-grain bread and a small salad. The soup was warm and fabulous. Dasha described it as the best potatoe soup she's had - I would agree. There was a hint of sweetness which, in my book, makes any meal better. The only thing that made it better was having lunch with a fun friend with a fabulous view of our crystal, blue Okinawan water! We then visited a fun & funky store that I will be covering on Okinawa Hai next week - check it out next Wednesday.

Friday found Bill on a four-day weekend so we did what any good American in Okinawa would do - we met friends at Mister Donut for breakfast!!! We paid our off-base bills and cruised at home for the rest of the day. We have started re-watching Season 3 of Bones. It rained off and on all day so staying inside was a great plan

Saturday was the 4th of July which I already posted about! It was an exciting day for my friend, Joelle - she gave birth to her 3rd child and her 1st girl. Little Kira will always have many friends to celebrate her special day with and two older brothers to keep an eye on her!!! Congratulations Yamada family!!! Joelle is the one who "recruited" me for Okinawa Hai and we attend bible studies together on Tuesdays.

On Sunday we we attended services at Calvary. Pastor Rick spoke on 2 Corinthians 12:11-15 and titled it "All For You" Part 1. We enjoyed lunch at our favorite Soba House with the Hawkins and did a little shopping at my favorite Y100 store. We closed the night out with several more episodes of Bones - it's getting really intense and ickier with each episode. The makeup department is getting a lot of business on this set. Our friends, Josh & Jenny, celebrated 1 year of marriage today - Congratulations!!!!

Monday started the week off well as I continued working on my Tuesday morning Bible study. This week we are talking about Love. I came away with two key points: We are commanded to love (John 13:34-35) and we are commanded to honor one another above ourselves (Romans 12:9-10). I've read both scriptures before but they came alive today and I am being challenged by them. God always gives us an opportunity to apply His Word to our lives - it is up to us to be obedient! I cruised with my friend Dasha most of the day and met Bill at Gordy's for dinner. Gordy's is our favorite hamburger joint on-island!!

Tuesday is where you will always find me on Kadena Airbase for PWOC. This is the 2nd day of our study where we could scrapbook in class as we learned about the Fruit of The Spirit. Our discussion on love was emotional and encouraging. I love our class and each women in it - the creativity abounds and their willingness to share their hearts is refreshing!

Several of us found time in the afternoon to sit for almost 2 hours for a Cocok's pedicure. I got my toes painted black with light and hot pink flowers to accessorize my newly softened feet. Later that evening we watched Max Payne. Not recommended for those of us who hear "bump in the night" to often. It was pretty violent, with some language, but the story line was good.

Wednesday I had a brain-storming meeting in the morning and a fabulous lunch. Just four of us ventured out to the Dim Sum restaurant I might have mentioned a few weeks back. It's a Chinese restaurant inside the Hotel Nikko Alivila. It serves both a buffet, with the best shrimp options on-island, and a Dim Sum cart service. Though this is not the cheapest lunch you will enjoy at Y2,500 it will be one of the yummiest with a breath-taking view.

We wandered the grounds of the hotel and happened upon the Picture Church on the property. My assumption is that the Picture Church is exactly what it's name implies - the place where they have pictures taken. They do have a typical church setting inside for a ceremony though I'm not sure how many Christian weddings would take place there. As you can see, it's absolutely beautiful.

In the evening the hubs and I went to the movies and saw "Knowing" with Nicolas Cage. Not sure I would recommend this movie either. I really like Nicolas Cage but I didn't like the ending. I should have been better prepared that this flick would have more of a sci-fi feel to it but I was still expecting something a little different. I wouldn't say not to see it, maybe just wait until it's on video. It is a little intense in parts so it's not for the faint of heart.

Have a great week and I'll see you next Thursday!!!! I'll have 2 surprises to share - one has something to do with eating "in" and the other surprise............. Here's three clues: it will have nothing to do with being pregnant, winning the lottery or heading back to the states early.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Food, Fun, Friends and Fireworks!

I have always loved the 4th of July. I have fond memories of 4th of July parties with all the swimming, eating and sparkler fun any young girl could enjoy. As I've grown older our 4th of July celebrations have taken on a different feel - traveling, attending baseball games as we traveled and watching fireworks from our driveway. No matter how you spent the day it represents the independence our country currently enjoys.

This year our 4th celebration looked very familiar - yummy food, great friends and a super view of the fireworks display on Kadena Airbase.
Brad and Shannon Hawkins - our dinner hosts!!! Shannon serves on our PWOC leadership board, loves to cook and obviously loves to have fun!

We gathered with our normal Saturday Night Crew, with the addition of a new couple on-island. The Hawkins invited us over for a BBQ on their roof. We enjoyed well-cooked burgers on homemade buns, homemade french fries, Ma's pasta salad made by Bill and homemade strawberry pie. We then traveled a few miles from their rooftop in Chatan to a balcony outside Gate 2 to enjoy fireworks from Sarah's apartment. The view from her 6th floor was spectacular and Bill took almost 100 pictures trying to catch the perfect explosion of light. I think he managed to accomplish his mission. No doubt we all had fun and I appreciate having yet another 4th of July to remember!!!!
Steve and Cheryl Niehoff. Cheryl was our President for PWOC last year and they are PCSing to San Antonio, Texas this Thursday!

Josh and Jenny Connors - married one year on Sunday July 5th. Jenny is on the PWOC leadership board with me, loves to wear pink and watch movies in the afternoon.
Chris and Sarah Honkanen - our fireworks hosts. Sarah is also on our PWOC board. She currently facilitates one of our PWOC studies, along with Shannon, loves to eat off-base and is a mother of 4!
Thanks to all of you for making our 4th of July a memorable one!!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Thursday's Tidbits

Special Note: Since I am living overseas this blog will post on Wednesdays but it truly is Thursday in Okinawa.

Last Thursday I was still feeling the jetlag and woke up sometime between 3 a.m. & 4 a.m. - ugh. Wish I was a true morning person. I began working on my new bible study and gearing up for God to speak to me through His written Word. Most of the rest of the day was spent opening all the boxes I sent myself and organizing room for all the stuff that was shoved into said boxes. I also spent a fair amount of time reading blogs and wishing I had more time to read blogs and post on my own. We closed out the night watching "Happy-Go-Lucky". I don't recommend it - just didn't make sense to me.
On Friday I got the opportunity to skype with my friend Laura - I love this mode of communication and wish I had dicovered it sooner!!! Nothing takes the place of seeing a friendly face no matter how far away they truly are. I enjoyed an AWESOME birthday lunch at the beautiful hotel Niko Alivila. I have always wanted to try this Dim Sum buffet and it did not disappoint. We were celebrating Myrna's birthday - she is one of my Army wives that I hang out with. After celebrating her special day I discovered that my military ID was expired and had been since the end of May and, I didn't have my Okinawan driver's license on me. That's not good - I was driving for a week without my local license and on an expired ID card. Leave it to the Army to be the only ones who picked up on this "little" detail. We finished out the evening on a date night watching "The Proposal" with Sandra Bullock - a must-see for all you romantic comedy fans.

Saturday was jam-packed with bible study, downloading pix, lunch at home and a nap. then the real fun began. We spend most of our Saturday evenings with a group I call the Saturday Night Crew. We started out with some geo-bachelors Bill worked with and added a few couples along the way. We've since lost our geo-bachelors and are reduced to three couples who love to eat out together. We visited one of our favorites - Pizza In The Sky. I believe they serve the best pizza on-island!!!!
Sunday found us reunited with our church family at Calvary where Pastor Rick spoke on "God Enough" based on 2 Corinthians 12:7-10. We enjoyed lunch at our favorite Soba House and then had to make a big purchase for the month - we bought a vacuum cleaner. This is when you know you have truly grown-up. We own a perfectly great vacuum cleaner that currently resides in a storage facility somewhere in Southern California. Since our vacuum cleaner stayed in Cali we thought we could limp along with a pathetic excuse for a machine that is suppose to suck up dog hair - the manufacture named this a Dirt Devil. What it really does is blows warm air out the back so while I'm pursuing said dog hair in one direction I have a ton of the same dog hair being blown out the back. Obviously this makes for more energy spent on chasing dog hair in all different kinds of directions.

The difference between the pathetic excuse of a vacuum on the left and our new "beast" on the right is visually obvious. I have always loved to vacuum and now I have major fire power to assist me in attacking any brave dog hair that gets in my way!!

We have recently hired Mamasans to clean twice a month and their vacuum cleaner finally bit the dust - literally. This meant that the House of Traquair needed to acquire a new dog-hair-sucker-upper if the bi-monthly mission was going to get accomplished. Since we are living in the land-of-not-many-choices and we needed to acquire this lovely tool in less than three days we mulled over the few options we had at the Foster PX and made our choice. We are now the happy owners of a Dyson with a net weight of 18.5 lbs and has a telescope reach wand that extends 17 ft. With a 5 year warranty and Lifetime HEPA filter we paid more for it than I want to admit. Suffice to say that my Mamasans survived their first day with this monster dog-hair sucker-upper and are willing to return in two weeks.
Monday wasn't near as exciting as Sunday but I was able to aquire a new ID with a picture I will regret until Bill's next promotion. What is it with these machines and organizations that just don't appreciate good lighting and even better angles? Why can't they purchase equipment that hides the 40 years on my face and my recent weight-gain? After all that, I was able to move on to bigger and better things like a working lunch. I met with the team of editors I am "working" with and getting to know through our association with Okinawa Hai. We enjoyed great coffee, food and fellowship at a local favorite - Coffee Casa. This little gem of a coffee-place is so fun to hang out at. Its even better that they are patient with kids and serve food, too!! My day got even better as I picked up my friend, Jenny, and we had a slumber party of sorts. Her husband is also a Marine and since he had duty on Monday she wanted to come and hang out with me. We worked on scrapbooking projects, did laundry, Bill cooked a fabulous Italian Sausage Spaghetti with Garlic Bread and we closed out our evening watching "Taking Chance". If you haven't watched this AWE-INSPIRING true story you need to. I do have to warn you that, though we see our great American patriotism at it's best, you still won't make it through without using a few tissues. God bless America and her Marines who continue to fight for our freedoms! (We do love and appreciate all our branches of service but we are a Marine family and therefore it's our favorite!)

Okinawa Hai team of editors at Coffee Casa.

Tuesday is my PWOC Bible study day. This was our second week in our summer studies and I continue to be blessed by our fun scrapbooking study on the Fruit of The Spirit. We gained a few more participants and shared our creatively diverse pages with each other. As in true PWOC fashion, we headed off to lunch at one of our favorite local haunts - Su Su Soon!!!

Two of our studyy participants sharing a completed page.

Wednesday I continued the scrapbooking fun with Jana, Kim and Ginger. I actually accomplished one small project, started another, enjoyed some AWESOME home-made chocolate-chip cookies and spent the morning chatting with my creative friends. We couldn't stand to part so we continued our fun while doing lunch at the Cafe Latte in the Kadena O'Club. God has truly blessed me with friends who are creative and love to eat - He is AWESOME!!!!!

We closed out the day with dinner at our favorite Thai Restaurant - Somchai's. I love their food but I have to say that I love that they call us by name and we can chat with the owners while they cook and prepare our food. No, we aren't sitting in their kitchen but we are really close. Richard, who does most of the cooking, LOVES what he does and prepares our meals out in the open with only a "bar" between him and his customers. I missed it so much while I was stateside that I over ate, of course!!! Then we scooted home to watch "Taking Pelham 123" with John Travolta and Denzel Washington. Great movie but be prepared for the language - lots of colorful language. It goes with the movie but it's still sorta hard to "hear"!!! I wish it didn't have to be that way but as I have come accustomed to saying recently, "It is what it is".

Have a great week and I'll see you next Thursday!!!!! P.S. I am having trouble figuring out blogger and I have no idea to fix the spacing issues I am obviously having. Just so you know, I do know that the spacing in this post is off and I had to choose to publish this now or never publish it out of sheer frustration!!!! Obviously I chose to publish - enjoy even with the spacing issues!!!