Sunday, June 29, 2008

Instant Origami

Ninja Origami
Thought I would share something fun for Sunday. Origami is a interesting art form, and I am astounded at what some people can do with just paper, such as, something simple like a frog out of a dollar bill,(me,I can do that, er well I used to be able to do that)to the complex like, oh, an entire rendering of The Last Supper in 3d. I found Instant Origami on swissmiss, which is also amazing, and quite intriguing. Instant Origami is the kind of paper art that I might someday aspire to.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

There were no cell phones

Claude and Virginia on their wedding day December 14,1943 in Spokane, WA. They met at Mary's wedding in Hollywood.

Grandpa Mac is not feeling well, so we are all praying for him.

Grandpa served in the Navy until 1944 and got a job at Mission Engraving in Los Angeles. He was a lithographer and an accountant. Grandpa retired from Mission Engraving after working there for over 30 years. Grandpa and Grandma moved to Hawaii in 1980 and built the house they are living in now.

Grandma's daddy Ulmen was a inventor and a business man. He owned a bakery that specialized in cookies. He invented a sealer for the cookie packaging. The bakery had a fleet of trucks that delivered the cookies all over Hollywood and the surrounding area. Great Grandpa Ulmen was known as an inventor to the Hollywood Studios so they would call him when they needed something special for their movie sets.

There were no cell phones, but they had fantastic movies, beautiful clothing, nice hats, and really good cookies.

Friday, June 27, 2008

More June Birthdays plus Martha Stewart

My mom's name is Claudia, aka Martha Stewart.

I joined a homeschooling group for two years. This past school year we took a break from it. My kids loved it, but I felt like I needed to be increasingly involved. I organized field trips and taught classes, and was becoming increasingly busy. Always seems like I have to say "no" to good things, but something has to go otherwise I go crazy.

One class I taught was a gardening class, and the theme for the day was all about harvesting and storing the food from your garden. My garden was quite small at the time,(as a matter of fact it still is.Does a sweet potato patch with more weeds than sweet potatoes count as a garden?)so I asked my mom to give me some items from her harvest to show the kids.

Well, Martha had only these things in her pantry: Chocolate bon bons made from her own Cacao tree, Cacao for the kids to sample, passion fruit lemon marmalade,passion fruit syrup, guava jam,mango chutney,dried bananas,papaya,pickled lemon,pickled mango,Banana mac nut muffins, and various herbs and vegetables I can't remember. Oh, I do remember mom had banana wine and lemon mead, but I thought the nice Baptist moms would not appreciate the art of wine making so I did not bring it.

Several moms, from other classes gathered around and they were all generally amazed that all of this came from one person. I would explain that my mom harvested and prepared all of it, and then the question would be asked again as if I had not said anything."Did you say your mom did all of this? "No, that kid over there with chocolate on his face brought it." "Yes, my mom harvested and prepared all of this."

Yes, and she paints,crochets,sews,writes award winning plays,is a traveling pantomime, and manages a real estate office too.

Happy Birthday Mom!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I love photobooth photos

Fun,crisp and clean, black and white,happy memorys,and friends.

If you give a kid a camera....

Isaiah recently went on his first Boy Scout camp out.They all went up to the Volcano National Park. I gave him a camera to take with him.
For some reason I imagined pictures of flora and fauna,maybe some photos of kids around the campfire? Instead I got feet. I don't even think they are Isaiah's feet.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Focus on the Floods

Many Midwest residents are still in shock as they begin trying to salvage their homes and businesses after some of the worst flooding the region has ever experienced. The damage to private property and crops is estimated to be in the billions of dollars. This could be the region’s biggest economic disaster in decades.
Samaritan’s Purse staff members are on the ground in Indiana, Iowa, and Wisconsin.
Lets remember people are still suffering and do what we can. For more information on how you can help, check out

Thursday, June 19, 2008

June Birthdays

Happy Birthday Dad!

Grounds for Gardens Starbucks saga part 3

My hero Andreas went to the Starbucks by the mall and came back with about 70lbs of grounds!!Maybe I should send him every time?

Remember to comment for the giveaway:-)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Photobucket got hacked!

I just found out photobucket got hacked. I think only an hour ago?The culprits are Netdevilz, some kind of Turkish hacking "Co"? They must have multiple servers because some people can still get on. Fortunately I have been using Flickr, and here on my blog only one photo was from photobucket. I can't get on their site at all.

Starbucks and the Grounds for Gardens:An ongoing saga

Well, today I went in for my weekly caffeine fix, and asked very nicely for grounds for my garden*smile*

The friendly blond behind the register says,"We don't have any because someone else has dibs"
Me:"Someone has dibs?"
Me:"So, how can I get dibs?"
Blond:"Well, the guy brings in a bucket, and we have to fill up his bucket before we can give out grinds to anyone else." "He is working on a educational thesis."
Me:"I am working on a educational thesis."

Well, I AM a homeschooling mom, and my kids are working on their garden plots. That's educational. When they finish growing their okra,green beans,peppers,and sunflowers, they will have completed their requirement for basic Gardening 101.
See, educational thesis.
So, should I bring in a bucket, or give up?

Oh, and please remember to comment for the giveaway below:-)

Monday, June 16, 2008

Summer gardening fun, Starbucks, and Caroll Spinney aka Big Bird

The kids were actually excited when I said they could each have their own garden plot, and they picked out their own seeds. So far we have 3 piles of compost(with coffee grounds from Star bucks),and the seeds are not planted yet.
Yes, I know it is the middle of June, but that is OK because this is Hawaii. We will be planting soon.

Can I just say that I am a little paranoid when I go to Starbucks and ask for coffee grounds for my garden? Every time I go, no matter which store I go into, I seem to get the same response to my request for grounds. "Oh, I am sorry, we just gave them all away." When I am feeling extra pushy, I ask them to just check the machines in case there is a little I may please have? Any that is hiding and they may have missed? Even if it is just a little, I would be happy to take it.*smile* Then behold,when they check for me, there are actually grounds! Can you believe it?

Wow, who would have thought there would be coffee grounds at the most famous coffee shop in the world where people are constantly purchasing coffee? So I am guessing the first day on the job at Starbucks, the barista inside scoop includes telling those pesky Grounds for Gardens people, "Oh, sorry, we just gave them all away." I came in one time around 1:30 and was actually told "Oh sorry, we gave them all away this morning." I did not have the energy to beg for scraps that time so I just ordered my tall skinny decaf vanilla latte and left it at that.
The good news is, I made a friend at Starbucks, and now if I come in when she is there, there always seems to be grounds at the cafe.Amazing.

On the front page of Yahoo news today was Big Bird, and the man who does his voice, Caroll Spinney.
When Mr. Spinney aka Big Bird came to Hawaii a number of years ago to buy property, my dad aka Bob Riley was his Realtor. So, BIG Bird owns property on the BIG Island.heh.

Mr. Spinney is also an artist, who draws and paints, and gave my dad a couple of signed prints he brought with him. One of them hangs in the kids bathroom today. He was an all around nice bird, I mean guy. Good to see he is still going strong at 74. Groovy.

The#1 most annoying song in America - James Moore

Actually, I don't think this is the most annoying song in America, but James Moore is really funny here. I had tears running down my cheeks and onto my lap top. I got a good ab workout. Thank you Andreas for sending this to me.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

My Dad is astonishing

My dad grew up in Washington State. Pearl Harbor was bombed the year he was born. My Grandma took a million pictures of him, his sister, and little brother . Grandma was a stay at home mom, and Grandpa worked for Grey Hound. Dad went to catholic school.

When my dad was a kid they only had a radio, and he still sings songs and jingles from that time occasionally, like; “Feed um Dr. Ross Dog Food, do um a favor. It’s got more beef and it’s got more flavor, Dr. Ross Dog Food is doggone good!” My dad is the kind of person who has a song for everything. He is a musical kind of person. My Dad is 6’3” and growing up, people always asked him if he played basketball. No, not basket ball, but he did play trumpet and first chair violin in High School.

Dad served in the Navy for 4 years. He worked a night job cleaning office buildings during that time too. He met my mom when he was stationed in California. They were both out dancing when they met.

My parents got married in Hawaii, lived in Arizona, and then traveled around the world for a while. They lived in Japan, and Australia. They decided they liked Hawaii the best out of all the places they had been so they moved to Oahu. They bought a sail boat, and then moved to the North Shore. I was born at Queen Kapiolani Hospital. Our back yard was the beach. My dad was a sales man, and did really well. He grew a garden in the sandy soil of our front yard using fish guts from the fishermen at the pier.

My parents bought some land on the Big Island. They moved to the Big Island when I was 4 years old. My parents rented a home while my dad built the start of a home on their land. He was working full time while building the house. To save money, we moved into the shell of the house, on one acre of land, without power, telephone, county water, or sewer. Dad built a composting toilet out of cement block, he built a water catchment system that collected rain water in a cement water tank he also built by hand, he set up some solar panels for power, and a solar water heater for bathing. Dad did all of this slowly using money saved, instead of taking a huge mortgage. My parents lived for about 27 years without paying a water bill or an electric bill!Many times when we were low on cash, we would forage for wild mango, strawberry guava, avocado,lychee, mountian apple,blackberries,ohelo berries, and coconuts.

Dad became a realtor when I was 8 and within a few years he became a member of the million dollar sales club. He is now a broker and owns Hawaii Land Realty Corp. in Hilo, Hawaii. My dad loves selling real estate, he likes living in Hawaii, he is a guitar and harmonica player, and music producer, but most of all He loves his Messiah.

Dad was a Hare Krishna for a while. One day, he took our car to a mechanic who lived nearby. When he got talking to him, the mechanic invited Dad to come to a Bible study he was having at his house. My dad thought he would go and argue about Christianity, but instead he became a believer in Jesus Christ. Since that time, about 26 years ago, he has been an avid student of the Scriptures. My dad has whole chapters of the Bible memorized. He had a prison ministry, he has a food ministry, and bible study for the homeless. Dad is the most generous person I know, and is constantly helping those in need. My Dad has encouraged me in so many ways, and was the first person to tell me about Jesus. Now he is the best Grandpa in the world too.

I wish he was running for president.

Don't send a lame Father's Day eCard.
Try JibJab Sendables!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

100% Kona Coffee Giveaway, Plus Computer Coupon, and a Free Tour in Hawaii

I am going to sell coffee from a lovely coffee farm in Kona. I will have pictures to post soon. Actually next week sometime when I get my first batch. I want to sell organic Kona coffee too.

I need help designing a logo. I was thinking of calling it Kealani's Kona Coffee, or Sunny's Kona Coffee, or _________Kona Coffee. What do you think?

Here are some of the words that pop into my mind when I think of the logo: organic,vintage,old Hawaii,pop art, block print, and love.

I will have to be printing them out in black and white at first, so the designs will have to look good in black n white too.

Well, to get 1 free bag of Kona Coffee, please comment below about which name you like best.
One winner will be picked randomly.

If you send design ideas to we will all vote here on the designs, and the designer of the winning logo will get 2 free bags of 100% Kona Coffee. Plus a 10% off coupon for any computer at Tech Tree PC! And a free tour of the East side of the Big Island with Hawaii Land Realty Corp.!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Winchester shot gun

So he did have a "blast" on his birthday.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Happy Birthday Isaiah!

I love you Isaiah! I can't believe you were once so small, and now you are almost 5 feet tall!
Happy Birthday to the best 12 year old in Hawaii!

Don't send a lame Birthday eCard.
Try JibJab Sendables!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Something to hold

Aloha! Just wanted to remind those of you who shop sales all year to fill their
Operation Christmas Child
shoe boxes, that this month the theme is "something to hold"

We can put many different items in our shoe boxes, but there are 3 items that are most important. #1 is something with color. #2 is something to hold, and #3 is a picture of you.
Oompa Loompa teddy bear

In June lets find a stuffed animal or baby doll for our shoe box.
If there is a good sale out there I will let you know. I will be heading to a toy store this month.

The children who receive these shoe box gifts need something to hold at night. Many of them are orphans, and are all alone. One volunteer told us that even the teen boys love the stuffed animals.

Last month was "something with color" month.
I have got my shoe box, my box of crayons, and now I am looking for a teddy bear:-)

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Organic roast beef arugula wrap

For lunch yesterday, I decided to make this wrap. I simply spread a flour tortilla with cream cheese, and then added heirloom orange tomatoes, fresh arugula, and lean grass fed beef.

You can not substitute lettuce in my opinion because I think arugula goes so well with roast beef.
I finished this too quickly, and then felt like eating like 3 more. I restrained myself and had some organic corn chips and cilantro hummus instead. This lunch was very easy, and quick to make.

Friday, June 6, 2008

$10,000.00 dollar rebate for solar electric!!

Yesterday, I spent the whole day at my required real estate classes. I did the insane and got them all over with in one day. 8AM to 9PM with 2 ten min. breaks, one 15 min. break, and one hour dinner break. My idea of hell, would be eternity listening to real estate law. To make up for the heinousness of my day, I was amazed to find out that on Jan. 19, 2007, a bill was passed in Hawaii providing residences with not only tax rebates, but now we get up to $10,000.00 off the initial cost of installing solar equipment.I am so freaking excited!
I feel like it is Christmas Day PEOPLE! This my friends is the kind of thing that makes me happy!

With all the bad news out there, the gas prices going up, and all the recent natural disasters, I am so glad EVERYONE in Hawaii can afford to go solar!! Lets get green Hawaii!
Just today, I called to get an estimate for our real estate office to get off the grid! Yippieee!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Organic, Grade A Large,Free Range Eggs

I told my kids that when Goompy and Speckle finish molting, we will make a cake that requires lots of eggs. Well, I looked up chocolate cake on Epicurious and found: Chocolate Stout Cake. This cake got 4 forks. We really liked this chocolaty,moist, not too sweet cake. The frosting is so easy too.

I like Epicurious because it is so easy to find a really good recipe. They have EVERYTHING.
I also like the way they rate it so you can quickly find which one is the best, then you can read reviews to help you make your final decision.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

How not to photograph a cat

"Scared of who? scared of you? I'm supposed to be scared of you?"

This is Lovie, and she is difficult to photograph. Also, I need a new camera.

Lovie was a stray cat who was living under a friend of my Aunt's house. She was maybe 3 months old when we got her. We think she was raised by dogs. She chases, and tries to fetch balls and toys , she hates cats, including our other cat Coco Latte. She once chased a dog off our property. She eats anything, including chicken food. She obeys Andreas. She is always hungry.

Monday, June 2, 2008

A Happy Feminist

I decided to write this because of a piece I read by Mom-101 about feminism. Her blog was very passionate, and well written. The term, “feminist” has become a dirty word that has us picturing a man hating, lesbian who has hairy legs and armpits. Mom-101 would like to take back the word feminist, and I would too.

Titus 2:4-5, says the women should be workers in the home. Titus is emphasizing how important the woman’s job in the home actually is.
I do not think this particular scripture isolates her to the home and to that one job only.
I believe that taking Titus 2:4-5 and isolating it apart from the rest of scripture is dangerous; just as dangerous as a woman who calls herself a “feminist” when she is actually a man-hater. One question I have; what do those who focus exclusively on Titus 2, do with the Proverbs 31 woman, Jael with her tent peg, and Deborah the prophet and judge? We should interpret scripture in the light of what the whole Bible says. Jesus even broke down cultural barriers that were anti-feminist. In John chapter 4 Jesus speaks to the Samaritan woman at the well. At that time it was taboo for a man to speak to that kind of woman, much less a Jewish Rabbi. By speaking to her, Jesus tells the world that people are equal in Gods eyes.

Bible believing Christ followers should take into consideration ALL scripture when understanding the important truths of the Bible. The Proverbs 31 Woman is strong, and I believe she is the perfect picture of a true feminist. Her husband trusts her. She works with wool and flax, and leaves her home to find the best food for her family. She has servants, and she provides food for them too. I love this part the best: she goes out and purchases land, and she plants a vineyard. She wears fine clothing, and she is strong. She sells products and makes a good profit. She works late into the night: she reminds me of the title of a new book called “Sleep is for the Weak”.
Not only does she provide food for her family, and her servants, she also gives to the needy. She dresses her whole household in fine clothing of the best fabric. She sells clothing. Her house is decorated with the finest furnishings. She is strong and dignified, and she is so well prepared that she does not worry about tomorrow. Her family loves her.
The Proverbs 31Woman did not stay at home all day and moan because she was depressed, or because her husband was not providing for her; she was too busy providing for her whole household.

It is dangerous to make a woman believe the only thing she can do is stay at home and cook and clean. Here in the real world, we need to be ready for what could lie ahead. I know that it is better for the children if a parent is able to be home with them,but what does one of these women do when her husband starts beating her? I knew a woman who stayed with a man for 30 years who was beating her in the head and giving her black eyes because her church believed it is worse for her to divorce and become independent than for her to be injured. Don’t misunderstand me, I think divorce is terrible, and I hated it, but don’t misunderstand God. God loves us and does not want us to be harmed, and He gave us the job as moms to protect our children too. We should not do what the “church” or religion tells us, we should do what God tells us.

I am no Proverbs 31 Woman, but I find her chapter to be encouraging, not discouraging. I can work outside the home, inside the home, and don’t have to feel guilty. I can be a true feminist, and also be a Bible believing follower of Yeshua the Messiah. Are you a woman who likes to vote, own land, and have the choice to own a business or get a job? Would you like to be respected equally in the workplace, then you are a feminist. All men and women are created equal in Gods eyes.

I was raised, in a very subtle way, in a feminist (in the good sense of the word) home. I believe this is a large part of what saved me when I was in an abusive marriage. My family helped me escape the abuse, protect my kids, and get a job. My dad is the kindest, most hard working, wonderful dad, and always encourages me. My mom is Martha Stewart, what can I say?

I am now re-married to Andreas, a man from South Africa, and Cyprus.
I will tell the story of how we met here. When? I think soon. His mom is a feminist too. (In the good way) She irons underwear, creates lovely pottery, crochets afghans, cooks mean Greek food, Dutch apple pies, and can manage a Supermarket with both hands tied behind her back!

Sunday, June 1, 2008


Remember I said I have a mermaid self? Well, my mermaid self wishes we could all swim across the Pacific Ocean, then across the Atlantic, and finally across the Med Sea.
Just need to work on our underwater breathing skills.

I think it would be much more pleasant than flying.

That said, I must say British Airways is nice. I love their perky accents.
Their seats are bigger(much bigger) than your average U.S. airline, and there is a little monitor for everyone, including children who get a little fidgety flying for 26 hours. Heck, I was a little fidgety after the first 1/2 hour. I think I have that restless leg thing. There were 14 channels with 5 of them movie channels. The kids loved the cartoon channel. My kiddies watched Wallis & Gromit-Curse of the Wererabbit about 5 times. British Air even gives the kiddies a little battery operated game, a toothbrush, an eye pillow, a blanket, a neck pillow, and a pair of socks. If you are a First Class passenger you can get a "room" and a bed upstairs too. They probably have their own wet bar up there.

By the time we boarded Cyprus Airways, when we went 3 years ago, I did not know who I was. I did know one thing: my butt hurt. Next time we will swim.