Monday, March 29, 2010

Tonight

It is only 9:30 pm and I am ready to hit my pillow. I don't know why I am so tired. Of course, Monday is laundry day, however that shouldn't have worn me out.

The wind is blowing outside. A rainstorm is headed our way. There should be some rain later tonight. It was real cloudy all day although it wasn't really that cold. We should have rain for most of the week.

I am real disappointed because I can not get my mini sewing machine to work right. Regardless of what I do, the tension is just not right on it. I watched a couple of tutorials on the machine today and did all that was demonstrated and it still doesn't work. What's really frustrating is that I do know how to sew and I shouldn't be having so much trouble getting this mini one to work right. So I suppose I might have gotten a machine that has something mechanical wrong with it. I asked Gerry to package it back up for me and I am going to return it to Hancock's. Hopefully I don't have a problem with doing that. I am just going to have to clean off the little table I have for my full size Singer machine and put it up so I can use it. I finished the card I had prepared to do the stitching on and will post it on my card blog tomorrow. I stamped and colored another image and will finish that up tomorrow and get it up on the blog too.

I'm headed to bed in a few minutes. Hopefully the wind won't keep me awake.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Palm Sunday

It was a beautiful day, lots of sun and temperature around 70 degrees.


Pastor Cole was not at church this morning. He has, for several years, been the guest speaker at Bayside Church in Roseville on Palm Sunday. A video tape message from him was played during the worship service this morning. The choir presented an outstanding musical by Bill Gather entitled "Alleluia - The Praise Continues".


After church we drove into Sacramento and ate lunch at The Spaghetti Factory. After that we went for a ride which took us through Carmichael, into Old Fair Oaks town, back into Carmichael and Fair Oaks, through Folsom and Granite Bay, Loomis and Auburn. From Auburn we got on I-80 driving back towards Sacramento. We got off the freeway at the Highway 65 cutoff because the traffic was backed up as is usually the case coming into Roseville on I-80. We drove a ways on 65 and then cut through the north side of Roseville to get home.


Along the roadways the wildflowers were in bloom, the California poppies and blue lupine and others. It was ironic because in the Sacramento Bee today there was a story about where to find the wildflowers in and around Sacramento.


Gerry is watching the Lifetime movie "Amish Grace". I purchased the book several months ago yet haven't read it. You may remember the news story how in October of 2006 in Pennsylvania, a gunman entered an Amish schoolhouse, took several girls hostage and ended up killing 5 of them and himself. The book explores the many questions that the story raised about the religious beliefs that led the Amish to forgive so quickly.


I googled "Amish Grace" and found several articles about the movie. According to the writers of these articles, the authors do not support the movie nor the message it portrays. I decided not to watch the movie, preferring to read the book sometime soon. I have always been fascinated with the Amish people, their beliefs and lifestyle. They are such a simple people and so misunderstood by the "English" as people outside of the Amish community are called.


We traveled back to Ohio the middle of October 2006 right after this tragedy. The area of Ohio we were in has a very large Amish community. Actually Holmes County in Ohio has a very large concentration of Amish, the second being the area around Lancaster, PA. We did some shopping in Holmes County, ate at several buffets and saw the Amish traveling in their buggies. We also visited a farm where we toured two different homes that were actually lived in by Amish families at one time and rode in a buggie. It is a tight squeeze in them and not very comfortable to ride in. :) On our way to Canton where we were meeting up with Denise and family, we stopped at a bakery that was in a separate room of a family's home. We thought they were Amish yet our son-in-law's parents said it was probably a Mennonite family. They are a little friendlier with the "English" than the Amish people are.


Our weather is going to be changing this week. We have enjoyed days of sunshine and temperatures in the 70's. There is a storm heading to the Sacramento area tomorrow and we should be getting rain tomorrow night and through the week. Just hope Easter Sunday is nice. It often is rainy on Easter Sunday.


Have a great week!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Today

It was a beautiful day with lots of sunshine. More of the same is expected tomorrow and then rain is forecast for Monday and into next week.

There was a Quilt, Craft and Sew Show at Cal Expo this weekend. It actually started Thursday and today was the last day. I drove down there this morning and spent a couple of hours. I don't always go to these kind of shows each year, especially if it is at Cal Expo. It cost $10 to park. I had a 50% off coupon for admission so that was $5, a total of $15 to go to the show. It would have been $20 total without the coupon.


The show is mostly quilting fabrics and sewing machines. There where a couple of vendors that had rubber stamping items. Nothing exciting though. I actually was able to walk through the whole show. With my back problems, it is difficult to do a lot of walking. It also entailed walking in from the parking lot to the building where the show was being held. I am in pain tonight which is usually what happens when I do a lot of walking without sitting down for awhile.


I bought a pack of clear envelope sleeves to put my cards in when I finish making them. It helps to keep them from getting dirty or smudged. I also got a quilted eye glass case (my hard side case is falling apart), a small coin purse and a small shoulder bag to carry when I go to things like the quilt show. I don't like to carry a purse, they tend to get in the way.


I played with my mini sewing machine some after I got back. I was having some trouble with getting the tension right so I emailed my friend who told me about the machine. She sent me a link for a tutorial so I watched it. I'll play with it some more tomorrow. I want to make sure the stitching and tension is correct before I use the machine on a card. I've got a card partly made, want to do some stitching on it before I finish it up. I know how to sew and this machine was getting me frustrated. Hopefully I will be successful tomorrow with getting it to work correctly.


I saw Brent yesterday and got about an inch (maybe) trimmed off. He cleaned up my layers and put more low lights in my hair. There is still some gray. I really like the way it looks. He had some soft curls in my hair when he finished. I have natural curls and waves so it doesn't need a lot of curling. His sister, Valerie, had an appointment after mine so I stayed and visited with her for a few minutes. I hadn't seen her in quite some time. Gerry and I have a little story with Valerie and Brian, her husband. They were married on our 5th anniversary. I casually had mentioned to Alda, their mom, about helping out at the wedding. Well, I ended up helping with setting up for the reception. Denise was there with me and Gerry came to the wedding after he got off work and cleaned up. He ended up washing everything that was used for the reception that needed washing. We got home after midnight that night, looked at each, said "Happy Anniversary" and fell asleep. We've never let Valerie and Brian forget it. LOL!!


Brent's father pastored the Nazarene church where Gerry and I met and his mother helped coordinate our wedding. His parents also helped me get the first job I had working for an attorney which was in the same building where they had their personnel agency. They started the agency after leaving the ministry. So we have a long history with the Steele family.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Kailua High School, Class of 1960, 50th Class Reunion


The celebration of Kailua High School, Class of 1960, 50th Class Reunion starts this evening with a dinner at the Natsunoya Tea House in Honolulu. On Saturday there is a luau at the home of a classmate in Waimanalo and on Sunday, a picnic at Bellows Field in Waimanalo. An email from a classmate said there were about 80 or so classmates attending the reunion with about 60 guests. That is a nice turnout for the 50th reunion. I think there were about 300 in our graduating class.

Our yearbook pictures had to be in cap and gown. Hard to believe I once looked like this at 17 years of age. It is a far cry from what I look like now at 67 years old. :)


As I've shared previously, I am not able to attend the reunion. A DVD is going to be made and I have placed an order for a copy of it. I will be there in spirit.


It is hard to believe that 50 years have passed since we graduated on June 6, 1960. What was then the high school is now the junior high school. The two schools swapped locations about 1964 or so.
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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Catching Up

It has been a few days since I've posted anything new to the blog. My Hawaii blogger friend, Jalna, wrote on her blog that it was really hard to come up with something to post. She posted every day for quite some time. She has decided to only post on 3 or so different days. I have to agree with her, it is hard to think of something to post about.


I am back to reading. I haven't done so in a lot of months, not like I don't have anything to read either. I have several books I've purchased and they sit on my bookshelves waiting for me to pick them up.


I receive a periodic newsletter from Francine Rivers and am a fan on her Facebook page. She has been talking about her new book which was just released last week. I then received an email from Family Christian Book Stores to pre-order the book so I did so. It arrived while we were on our trip to Southern California. The name of the book is "Her Mother's Hope" and although she says it is purely fiction, it is based on the relationship of her mother and her mother's mother. It is an excellent book and I highly recommend reading it. I've read most of Francine Rivers' books and they are all excellent.


I didn't know who she was until Denise told me about her. The first book I read was "The Scarlet Thread" and I was hooked.


Reading the book made me think of the relationship I had with my mother which was very difficult in a lot of ways. I was not always the kindest or most understanding daughter. I loved her very much yet we clashed a lot of the time. In a lot of ways, I have her personality and that was probably a lot of the problem.


In my very young days, she was probably upset with me more than anything. My father favored me of my sisters and that caused a lot of problems. I never thought she was very happy with anything I did in my adult years. She was very upset with me when I told her I wanted to get married to my first husband yet she made me a very lovely dress to wear for the ceremony. Well, she was a professional seamstress. That dress and jacket still hangs in my closet some 48 years later. I've taken it in every move I've made and I treasure it because she made it.


We went for years without speaking and I always wondered whether she loved me or not. In her later years she did verbalize how much she loved me, it was hard, I think, for her to demonstrate it. I have always been thankful Denise and I have a close relationship and we have not gone through the struggles my mother and I did. I've always made sure I not only verbalized my love for Denise, I also made sure I demonstrated it to her so she would not have any doubts. There was a brief time when I think she probably doubted my love for her yet we got through that period.


I came to a place in my life where I had to accept my mother for who she was and although she didn't express her love for me the way I wanted her to, she did love and care for me. I certainly loved her and expressed it to her often. She is with Jesus now.


Last night I finished reading one of Nicholas Sparks books, The Choice, which he wrote a couple of years ago. He is another author Denise told me about. He has written one or two books since The Choice which I haven't purchased. I need to read what I have before I go buying anything new. I think the next book I'll read is a non-fiction entitled "Children of Chinatown, San Francisco". The author of the book is the daughter of one of the residents here at our mobile home park. She is a professor at Sacramento State.


I bought myself a new toy today.
I have a stamping blogger friend who uses stitching on a lot of her cards. I really like the way her cards look. So I sent her an email the other day asking her if she used a full size sewing machine to do the stitching or did she have a mini one. I got an email from her this morning with a link to the machine she uses. She got it from Hancock Fabrics. So I went online and looked at it and read the reviews. Every reviewer gave the machine at least 4 stars. And it was on sale too. I decided to call a Hancock Fabrics store here in town to see if they carried them. The store I called had three of them in stock and they were on sale in the store too. So after I went to Sushi Masa's for lunch I drove over to get it. And I didn't have to wait for it and didn't have to pay shipping. :))
The machine weighs less than 5 lbs. and it does go in reverse. That is the lever on the right side of the machine. It also has several choices of stitches. So I am anxious to try it out and see what I can come up with. I have a full size Singer with lots of bells and whistles but it is a pain to get out and set up. I have a small table in my office/craft room to put my machine on, however it is stacked with other stuff right now. :))
I found a mini Singer machine on Joann's website, it is $50 more than this one and the reviews were really bad. My friend told me she really loves hers and has used it for other things besides her cards.
My hair has gotten quite long, just past my shoulders when it is wet, rests on my shoulders when it is curled. I have an appointment tomorrow to get it trimmed or maybe go a little shorter, although I like the length of it right now. I've noticed too it is getting quite thin on the top. It is a little unnerving since my hair has always been so thick. I guess that is a sign of getting old. I've always been so vain about my hair. :)
That's all I can think of to write about for now. I am enjoying this weather and hope it lasts for a while.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Note About Videos

To those that receive an email whenever I post something new on my blog:

You may have to go to the blog itself to see the videos. Gerry just informed me that he received an email that had 6 figures of clocks. I told him to go to my blog itself and he was able to see the videos. The sound is not of the best quality as, of course, this is outside and I have a Casio Exilim digital camera.

Hope you can see them.

Some of the Hulas Performed Sunday at Memorial

My first attempt at uploading videos to my blog. Unfortunately, I uploaded them in the reverse order of the performances. Well, I will know better the next time I do this.

This first hula is being danced by Celeste who is one of Eke's granddaughters. She is the daughter of Bobby. This is a beautiful hula and she did such a wonderful job in dancing it as a tribute to her grandmother. She is the mother of two little boys. Her oldest son who is 5 years old was sitting on a bench in front of us. He was sure proud of his mom!

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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Southern California Trip This Past Weekend

We left home Friday morning at 5:35 am to head to Southern California to attend my sister Eke's memorial in Simi Valley. Gerry wanted to be on the road by 6 am so we were way ahead of schedule. We stopped in Tulare at Apple Annie's for breakfast after 9 am after traveling 220 miles. We discovered that this is half-way to La Puente.

We got into LaPuente a little after 1 pm and drove by Joyce's school before going to the hotel where we were staying. Gerry thought about going in to see her then decided not to do that. We stayed at a brand new Comfort Suites hotel not too far from where Joyce and George live. We got checked in, relaxed for a little bit then drove over to Joyce and George's. George and Emma were home, Joyce and Katie got home about 5pm. Wendi is staying with them for a while and she got home about 6pm. Joyce stopped at the store and got some chicken for dinner.

Here's a picture of Katie with a dolphin painted on her cheek that someone at school did for her. Katie loves to have her picture taken.
Here's Emma hiding. She had gotten her pj's on and brought her pillow, a blankie and a stuffed animal to lay on the sofa for a little bit. As soon as I picked up my camera to take a picture, she covered herself up. :))
On Saturday morning we drove down to Garden Grove to visit the Johnsons. They were neighbors of mine and my first husband and we were very close. We lost contact with each other until I found their younger daughter, LeeEllen on Facebook. Denise was about 6 or 7 months old the last time I saw them. Last summer when we stopped at Joyce's on the way home from our trip to Alabama, I called and talked to Sharrill. It wasn't going to work out to see them on that trip. So when we decided to go to my sister's memorial, I told Gerry I wanted to see the Johnsons.
John and Sharrill took us to a really neat Japanese restaurant for lunch. It was a Shabu Shabu place where you cook your meal at your table in a hot pot. Gerry and Sharrill had the Shabu Shabu, I had sushi and John had a shrimp dish. I wished I would have thought to take pictures. I was too busy catching up. We had a really great visit and it was very difficult to leave. We had intended to leave around 3:30 or 4, we didn't actually leave until 5:30 or so.
This is their daughter Debbie who still lives at home. She is holding JD (which stands for "Just Dog"), a pomeranian and Cheyenne. Cheyenne was not too sure of us and growled when we got back from having lunch.
John, Sharrill and us.
This is a drive-thru in LaPuente. We stopped here Friday night on the way back to the hotel and then stopped again on our way to Simi Valley on Sunday. We got some donuts then went over to the kids house to have some breakfast. They had already had pancakes. We left the donuts so they could enjoy them later.
A picture of the snow on Mt. Baldy. I took this as we drove up I-605 to I-210 west.
It was a nice drive to Simi Valley which took a little over an hour to get there from LaPuente. This is a picture of me with my 2 nieces and 2 nephews, Eke's children. Left to right: Sandee (she's the youngest), Bobby, Tommy (he's the oldest) and Patty Jean. Patty Jean commented that it is usually family that calls her "Patty Jean" and she is probably in trouble for something. :)) Sandee lives in Moorpark, Bobby in Fillmore, Tommy lives in Washington, DC and Patty Jean lives in Hana on the island of Maui. Eke lived with Sandee towards the end, Sandee and Bobby helped care for her.
On this table are pictures of Eke in her younger years and an album of performances done by the Simi Valley Sweet Adelines and the Channelaire Chorus of which she was a part of for many years.
My niece, Amy. She is the second to the youngest daughter of my oldest sister, Marie. She and her husband live in Tracy which is southwest of Sacramento.
Amy feeding her face and Bobby - cousins. Bobby is wearing a kukui nut lei.
Nalani, my grand niece. She is Eke's oldest granddaughter. My niece, Sandee is her mother. She is reading her tribute to her grandmother.
Sandee, Patty Jean and Bobby.
Bob, Sandee's husband. Off to the side is Joe, Amy's husband.
A couple of Eke's friends sent letters and Sandee is reading them. Patty Jean is her moral support. These two women are such beautiful women, both inside and in appearance. Sandee reminds me a lot of my sister.
Tommy giving us a little bit of history of the family and explaining how Eke got her nickname. Regretably I did not take notes and I don't remember exactly how she got it. His sharing was beautiful. He mentioned my being there and that I was one of his mother's younger sisters.
Kohana (9), my great grand niece, wrote something about her great grandmother she wanted to read. Kohana is Nalani's daughter. Patty Jean is reading it for her. Also in the picture is Nalani, Sandee and Loralei, a former daughter-in-law.
Loralei sharing a memory with moral support from Patty Jean. Loralei was married to Billy, Eke's son who passed away some time ago. They had one son.
Patty Jean speaking about her mother with Sandee for moral support.
Here I am sharing my thoughts with Patty Jean offering her support. Patty Jean was celebrating her 60th birthday on this day. She has 3 children and 6 grandchildren. When we were all kids we spent a lot of time together. We are also very close in age. Tommy, the oldest, is 4 years younger than I.
Nalani. She is a beautiful person, both to look at and in her spirit. She is the mother of two children. Sandee is blessed to have such an awesome daughter!!
The keikis (children) getting ready to dance.
This hula troupe performed at Eke's 80th birthday party.
The ladies getting ready to dance.
I will post some videos Gerry took in a separate post.
Cousins - Amy and Sandee.
Sandee and I.
There were several of these anthrium bouquets tied up on the pillars surrounding the pavillon where we gathered. Sandee gave one of them to me as we got ready to leave. Gerry took this picture on the bed at the motel where we stopped for the night after leaving Simi Valley.
I put them in a vase when we got home and tried to arrange them as they were in the bouquet. I love anthriums!
We left Simi Valley about 3:30 pm Sunday afternoon and drove to Castaic to spend the night at a Rodeway Motel. This was a much older motel and we were thankful we were only staying there a night. We were on the road by 8:30 am Monday morning and planned to stop somewhere north of Fresno for lunch and a break.
These pictures of the wildflowers were taken somewhere between Madera and Merced. Probably due to all the rain we've had, the flowers were in full bloom.


We stopped in Merced for lunch. We saw a billboard on the highway for this BBQ place. We had eaten at one in Visalia with the Paytons, friends of ours, a couple of years ago.
This was outside of the restaurant.
There was this huge manmade tree in the bar area with a tree house. This tree house was pretty big and on the back side of the tree were steps to go up to the tree house.

A bucking bronco.

Gerry's lunch, two mini sandwiches - tri tip and pulled pork with cole slaw.
My lunch, a grilled chicken sandwich with cold slaw which was really good!!
There was a very large gathering of friends and family at the memorial for Eke. It was very obvious that she was very much loved and had touched so many lives with her love and support. There was always an open door at her home. Friends were always made to feel like they were a part of her family.
Eke will be missed by so many, yet her legacy of unconditional love will live on in those whose lives she touched.
Note to Denise:
These pictures of our family are only a very small portion of the very large family that we are a part of and it is only from your grandfather Chung-Hoon's family. I don't know if you will ever get to meet any of your extended family. Yet you and your family are loved by all of them because you are ohana (family).

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Sisters


I was looking for some family pictures and found this one. This was taken several years ago in Burbank, CA. My sisters Vi (Viola), Eke (Ethelwynne) and I. Vi's daughter, Stephanie, had passed away from cancer; Gerry and I flew down to Burbank for the funeral. Vi had come from the Big Island of Hawaii and Eke had come over from Simi Valley to help Vi during Stephanie's last days. Gerry took this after the service and we had changed clothes and gotten comfortable. Eke is the sister that passed away last month.

Gerry and I are driving down to So. California on Friday and will be in Simi Valley for Eke's memorial on Sunday. I am looking forward to see what family will be there.
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Sunday, March 7, 2010

Japanese Food Festival in Loomis

After the birthday party yesterday and stopping at Sunrise Mall, I asked Gerry if he wanted to drive out to Loomis to Del Oro High School. The First United Methodist Church of Loomis was holding its annual Japanese Food Festival. It was being held at the high school. They have been doing it for 56 years.

Gerry dropped me off in front of the school and then went to find a parking spot. As I walked towards the cafeteria which is the flat roofed building up ahead, I saw this statue of a hawk (I think). To the left of this is a new building, probably the administration building. Here's a close-up. It sure is beautiful!
We were offered a menu of the items available for purchase. They had a dine-in menu and a take-out menu. On my plate is a skewer of beef kushiyaki, the dark meat from a half of chicken teriyaki, chow mein and bara sushi which was seasoned rice with peas and carrots in it. It was all pretty good.
Inari sushi without the tofu skin in the shape of a musubi (rice ball).
The front of the flyer.
The back of the flyer with the Dinner Line Menu and the Take Out Menu. The prices were very reasonable. Gerry also got a couple of packages of cookies.
It was a lot of food for a little over $20 and very good. Gerry ate the left-overs for a snack tonight.
This church has a long history in this area. In 1903 a group of Japanese immigrants gathered together in the Loomis area for bible study and worship. They were all farmers. As they prospered, they sent for their wives and children to join them. After Pearl Harbor was attacked these Japanese immigrants were forced to leave their homes and the fruits of their hard labor and sent to internment camps. Many of the young Japanese men from the surrounding communities served in the Armed Forces and were part of the Army's famed 442 Regimental Combat Team.
The Japanese farmers returned after the war ended and continued to farm in the area. The church doors were sealed shut from 1942 to 1945. Up until 1953 the congregation was all Japanese. The congregation is now a mixture of all peoples as most churches are today. Their first English-speaking pastor came in 1957. This information was taken from the church's website.