Friday, April 29, 2011

34 Things To Do Before Turning 35

Otherwise known as "Happy Birthday to Me!"  How did it get to be my birthday again??  But here we are.  Time to unveil my list of things I hope to accomplish before my next birthday.  Is it just me, or does this list get harder and harder to make ? :)

  1. Visit a new place (city, state, country...)
  2. Floss everyday for a week
  3. Go for a hike on Mt. Rainier
  4. Volunteer at a triathlon
  5. Invest in something (stocks, mutual funds, gold - TBD)
  6. Finish my 2009 Photobook
  7. Finish my 2010 Photobook
  8. Complete the Couch to 5K program
  9. Visit a dermatologist
  10. Stay within my budget for (at least) 2 months
  11. Do Jillian Michael's 6 Week Six-Pack DVD
  12. Try a recipe with a turnip
  13. Try a recipe with a rutabaga
  14. Read 5 books
  15. Turn off the TV for an entire week
  16. Buy a DSLR
  17. Take a photography class
  18. Take a dance class
  19. Look into volunteer programs
  20. Go kayaking
  21. Climb the rock wall at REI (if my knee will let me)
  22. Try a recipe with a squash
  23. Participate in one race type event per month (once again ambitious, but we'll see)
  24. One I'll keep to myself
  25. Run in the 2012 Tinker Bell Half Marathon
  26. Run in the 2012 Princess Half Marathon
  27. Another one I'll keep to myself
  28. Buy a Garmin watch
  29. Turn around my Netflix movies at least once a month (or drop my subscription)
  30. Try acupuncture on my knee
  31. Trade one of my Disney pins
  32. Visit Houston & see Jana's house
  33. Spend a weekend somewhere on the Oregon Coast
  34. And one more I'll keep to myself

Thursday, April 28, 2011

33 Things Wrap Up

Well it's about that time to close out the old list and start with the new one.  Let's take a look at what didn't happen this last year and if we'll roll it over to the new year!!  And let's not dwell on all the things I didn't accomplish, because what good would that do? :)

Making the 34 Things List
  • Buy a DSLR (I have money set aside for this, just haven't pulled the trigger.  Plus I'm trying to decide between a Canon and a Nikon)
  • Take a photography class
  • Read 5 books (Came close - and if you count the romance novels I totally read 5 books!)
  • Finish my 2009 Photobook
  • Take a dance class (I bought a groupon so I'd better do this one!)
  • Go kayaking (Another groupon)
  • Buy a Garmin (Another one I have money set aside for, but just haven't bought yet)
  • Run in the 2011 Princess Half Marathon and stop for more photos (Skipped due to knee injury - but it should morph into maybe the 2012 Princess or Tinkerbell!)
  • And one I'll keep to myself for now
Not going to happen
  • Buy a Disney timeshare (Still want to do this, but no time pressure)
  • Go to trivia night
  • Try a spinning class
  • Set up an IRA
  • Go up to either Victoria BC or Vancouver BC for the weekend
  • Seriously look into buying a house/townhouse/condo (With my uncertain job future, going to put this one on hold)
  • Run 12 5Ks (There will be something along these lines)
  • Purge my closet (I've gone through it a couple of times, but never fully purged)
And there you have it.  My 33 Things list is now closed.  Stay tuned for a 34 Things list!!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Mental Health Day

It doesn't happen often, but every once in awhile I take a "mental health day" and today was one of those days.  I slept in.  Until 7.  Really, 7?  But 7 is at least a little sleep in.  And then I dozed off and on until I finally got up in time to go to hot yoga.  It wasn't my best yoga class, but it was still good. 

And then I went to to the grocery store (don't judge - I don't usually go anywhere after hot yoga, except home and shower but I thought I could quickly go through the grocery store).  I have one more recipe to make to complete #1 on my 33 Things list.  And while I was at it, I brought in my own bag!  Smelly, sweaty but with my own bag!  Check #31 off the list!  Best purchase of the day though was chocolate milk.  I have been craving chocolate milk for the last few days.  You'd think after the Easter candy I wouldn't need any more chocolate but you would be wrong.

The recipe for April?  Still feeling lazy, so I went to my old stand-by of pizza.  This time it was Fig and Goat Cheese Pizza.  Of the pizzas I've made, this was probably my least favorite.  It wasn't bad, just not my favorite. 

And now?  I'm sorting through pictures.  Or at least trying to.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

It ended up being a rainy Easter.  But what I love about Easter is the promise of new life and hope.  Flowers need rain to grow, so a rainy Easter isn't that bad.  And I really need some hope right about now.

The day started off at church and then it was a rainy walk/run at the park.  I am feeling more and more comfortable running and I was able to increase one interval to run 2 songs!  

And then it was time for Easter lunch.  My brother made a roast.  And this year my mom did make your own Easter baskets.  You better believe I still get an Easter basket!   Which means I got to pack mine full of Cadbury eggs! :)  Yum!!

And now I'm watching Sound of Music!  Which I associate with Christmas, not Easter.  Not that I'm complaining - I'll watch it whenever.  And Titanic is on next!  Seriously I have seen both of these movies numerous times and own them on DVD but yet I'm sitting and watching them on regular TV, with commercials.  Apparently my DVR is running low! :)

Hope everyone had a good Easter!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Five Senses Friday

Well I'm about 95% sure I'm going to go for broke and do both the Tinker Bell & Princess Halfs.  Yikes!!  But FUN!!  Costumes, medals, and running here I come!

  • Scream 4 - yeah, not sure how I got talked into this, but I'll blame it on co-worker peer pressure!!  I don't mind the Scream movies since they are fairly cheesy with humor thrown in.
  • Abbot & Costello's Who's on First - I love that skit!  Makes me laugh every time!!  I don't know - third base!
  • Buttery movie popcorn!  And I can't wait to eat Cadbury Creme Eggs on Sunday for Easter!  And then Monday I'm going to try and start cutting back on all the sugar I've been eating...
  • Fresh air when I visited the tulips
  • A bit more optimistic

Want more Five Senses?  Check out Mandi and Abby Try Again.

Happy Easter!!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

No Answers, Just Questions

It is ingenious to pair Disney with running. I get to run at the happiest place on earth! The whole reason I did the Princess Half was 1) because it said Princess and 2) because it was at Disney World!! And apparently I’ll take any excuse to go to Disney! I’ve now done 5 events at Disney World (2 put on by Disney, 3 on Disney property). One day I’d like to branch out and do another half (not at Disney) but for now, I’ll stick with Disney running for long distances. I was super excited when I heard they were planning a new race and watched all the clues hinting at the new race (but not really solving any). And then the announcement – a Tinker Bell Half at Disneyland!! Oh, but in January. (Excitement wanes a little.) Right before the Princess Half. (Excitement drops a little more.) But I really want to do the Princess again!! But the Tinker Bell Half sounds like so much fun!! And Tinker Bell means Peter Pan which means London.  And I love London! Plus it is in Disneyland! And how fun would it be to run the inaugural Tinker Bell Half? I still remember being at Disney World for a triathlon and hearing them announce the inaugural Princess Half – I knew then that I wanted to do it, even if it would take me another year or so before I worked up enough courage. Then there is the thought – I could do both. Could I? Really? Then I would (hopefully!) get a Coast to Coast medal. But a month apart? With the first one at the end of January? January is a bad month for me work-wise. Oh yeah, work. I still have no idea what I’ll be doing (or for how long). Is it smart to sign up for two races so close together? Is it physically smart? And is it fiscally smart? And let’s throw in mentally while we are at it! But then I’d be done. I’d basically have one long training build-up and then maintain for another couple of weeks. This actually might be the best way for me to do it. Hmm… That would translate into starting training in October-ish, which works out with triathlon season being over.  Not that I’m doing too many triathlons this year (in fact I think I’m only doing 1), but still it would be nice to finish up my triathlon and then solely focus on running. What to do? What to do?

Thanks for bearing with me as I sort through all the confusion in my head. I will probably continue to hem and haw and see-saw back and forth for awhile before making up my mind. I am not a good decision maker. Scratch that. I have difficulty making decisions. Anyone else thinking of doing one or the other? Princess or Tinkerbell? Neither? Both?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Tulips - 2011 Edition

I just love visiting the Tulip Festival.  I talked Nilufer into going with me this year (I think she agreed partly because I promised her we could stop at the Outlet Mall on the way back).  We were almost there when it started pouring rain!!  But thank goodness the rain let up and the day ended up being an absolutely beautiful day.  I'll let the pictures do the rest of the talking for me...

Bellevue 5K

Bellevue 5K, otherwise known as Welcome Back 5K!  Today was my first foray back into the land of racing.  Let's do a little rewind first, and see how I got here.  The Cliff Notes version (get it, cliff?  I crack myself up!): 2010 was the rise and fall of my running career.  I had never really liked running at all, but had started to dabble in it - run one song.  Then it was run two songs.  And then I had run a mile continuously!!  I continued to build and there I was - running my first 5K without stopping, running (with some walking) the Princess half, watching my personal records fall left and right.  For awhile it seemed as if each 5K or 10K I ran I was setting a new record for myself.  I was on my way to becoming a runner!  And then came the fateful day in Italy.  Long story short (with some dramatics thrown in, because I do so like the dramatics!) I fell off a cliff and ended up with a sprained MCL (grade 2, whatever that means).  And there has been virtually no running (or anything else) for about 5 months now.  Which catches us up and brings us to this morning.

But let's back up, shall we?  To the night before, where I decided to mess with my iPod.  Why did I do that the night before?  Good news, I now have new songs on my iPod.  Even if I stayed up past my bedtime.

Race Morning!!  I got to the race site, parked and headed for registration.  Holy Registration Line!  It was down and around.  It ended up eating all my extra time.  I got my t-shirt and since I didn't have enough time I tied it around my waist.  I had just enough time to do a little stretching (not even enough time to visit the port-o-potty!) before they started us off!

My goal was to alternate running and walking, using songs to tell me when to switch.  I started off running and almost immediately (or so it seemed) we were climbing up a hill.  I was about to give in and walk when song #1 ended and I could legitimately walk! :)  Thank goodness!!

At this point my fingers were freezing!!  I had debated gloves, but decided against it.   I regretted that decision until I passed the 1 mile mark.  My fingers had warmed up by then.   I settled into a good rhythm and leapfrogged with several people who were also doing run/walk intervals.

I knew I was going to have a decision to make.  With my pattern I was going to finish on a walk song.  So do I run 2 songs and finish strong?  Or keep with my pattern?  My knee seemed to be doing okay, but I didn't want to push it.  I compromised.  I walked briefly until I was the 6 mile sign (for the 10Kers) and realized I just had 2 tenths of a mile left.   I tried to turn on the afterburners but the 5 months of near inactivity and the hill I was climbing didn't quite let me.  I had to walk up the last little bit of the hill before I somewhat turned on the afterburners to cross the finish line.

Now I could say my time really didn't matter to me.  But that wouldn't be true.  I really wanted to finish in under 45 minutes.  And, well I finished in 45:28 - close but no cigar.  Oh well, there is always next time.  

Friday, April 15, 2011

Five Senses Friday

  • A quote this week: It makes sense, it just so obviously doesn't.  Which was said by yours truly and repeated back to me to appreciate the absurdity of the comment.  
  • Hm, last night's dinner was goldfish, teddy grahams, string cheese and a Butterfingers.  Now that's the dinner of champions! 
  • The dawning realization (read: panic) that I am about to be 34.  When did that happen??  33, not so bad.  But 34?! 
  •  Daffodils on the side of the road - spring is really coming!
  • Mango-scented lotion

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Tuesday Afternoon Interlude

I was about name this post Wednesday Afternoon Interlude - in fact as I composed it in my head, it was Wednesday.  And then I realized that no, it isn't Wednesday, it is Tuesday.  Tuesday doesn't have quite the same ring, but it's all I got at the moment.

I have probably mentioned before that I am an accountant.  That's right, I am a numbers girl.  And with this profession comes long hours at certain times of the year.  This being one of them.  I went into work today expecting a somewhat long day to finish up my part.  But guess what?  There's a delay!!  Which meant I could leave work at a normal time.  Fortunately I had some gym clothes with me so I walked across the street to the work gym.  I was changing when it hit me.  It was still light out and would be for awhile.  I didn't have to go to the gym, I could go to the park.  But I was already at the gym.  Treadmill?  Park?  Treadmill?  Park?  Park, duh!  It was a little on the chilly side and it would have been nice to have a different shirt, but I was at the park on a weekday and the sun was shining (even if it wasn't too warm out).

So back across the street I went and hopped in my car and drove to one of my more "hilly" parks.  Well, it is one long uphill followed by one long downhill followed by what seems like a long flat until you turn around and realize it was actually a long sloping downhill which was now an uphill.  My knee felt okay for the most part.  I walked 1 song, ran 1 song and continued that pattern.  I'm really trying to listen to my knee as I make my long comeback!

Friday, April 08, 2011

Five Senses Friday

So this morning I have all green lights to work.  That never happens!!  And of course the day it happens is the day I really want a red light so I can finish my ever so important text about my coffee order.  Because believe you me, it is a COFFEE day today.  I was able to finally finish my text when I parked.  Whew!  And I was still in time for the order.

  • One Shining Moment - I just love that song!!  Even if my team isn't anywhere close to being in the Final Four, that song just makes me smile.  Literally, every year this is the highlight of the college basketball season for me.
  • Tired

  • Late nights at work = pizza, but I only had 2 slices of the thin crust, which I'm taking as a victory considering I wanted 3 and I wanted one of the regular crust pieces.
  • Something not very nice that was left in the garbage in one of the conference rooms.  Ew!

  • Snow and hail in April?  Really?

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Here we go!

In a moment of "oh yeah, I can totally do that" I signed up for a race.  That's right.  A race!  In two weeks!!  Oh boy.  Apparently now that I am moving better, my love of all things race kicked in (race t-shirts, medals, start lines, finish lines, expos, and goody bags).  This race has an option for a 5K Run or a 5K Walk.  And you have to register for one or the other.  Now here is the dilemma - obviously I will be walking way more than I will be running this 5K.  But I will be attempting to run at least part of it.  Does that make me part of the Run or the Walk?  What to choose?  I tell you I was very torn over this issue.  I wavered back and forth and forth and back.  In the end I signed up for the run (after realizing both the run and walk started at the same time) because I always think back to my first half marathon (many, many years ago and I walked the entire thing) and the race official was telling us if you are a walker, you should be walking, not running.  Since I am pretty sure I will be able to run a little bit, that's what I signed up to do.  Wow, this will be my first race in about 5 months!  Now, what to wear?  And what playlist?  All these exciting decisions to make!

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Week in Review

Well it's been two weeks since I heard the bombshell news (my company is being sold - dun dun dun!!) and I'm feeling much more calm about it.  Life is definitely going to be interesting and uncertain for the next year or so.  I might be freaking out a little more except my previous company spectacularly collapsed.  Compared to that, being sold isn't so bad!

So what else has been going on with me?  I ran on the treadmill!!  Not for very long.  It reminds me of when I first started running - it was run 1 song, walk 1 song.  Basically I'm back to that, except I'm mainly walking and only running one song until I feel more solid on my knee.

I also made it back to the pool.  For the most part my knee did well, especially if I kept it straight.

Friday night Jessica, Nilufer & I went to see Billy Elliot.  I love that show!  And the little kid who played Billy was amazing!  It made me wish I still took ballet.  Not that I was ever a good ballet dancer - I took it for a little while when I was a kid and then I took a quarter or two in college.  Ballet is so graceful yet powerful.  If only I was that graceful...

On Saturday I went to hot yoga.  With the treadmill and swimming successes this week, I thought maybe  I would be able to do a few more postures.  I tried out Dancer's and while I am much further along than before, there are several postures I still cannot do, Dancer's being one of them.

Sunday morning I told myself I could sleep in since I was meeting my sister & BIL for brunch, but if I woke up in time, I would go for a walk.  And guess what?  I woke up, with no alarm mind you, in time to go for a walk.  A walk on the trail by my house.  I don't normally use this trail as I like paved trails, but not having to drive to a trail was nice.  But what to wear?  Especially given our crazy weather lately - sun followed by hail followed by torrential rain.  I decided on a hat, but no gloves or a jacket.  I saw daffodils on the trail which has to mean spring is on the way!  I also saw a raccoon and a bunny.  Raccoons scare me!  Except Meeko.   Fortunately the bunny was going the opposite direction of the raccoon.   I got to a part in the trail that wasn't too muddy and started running.  Again only one song.   Part of the reason I chose this trail was because there was a Starbucks at the turn-around point.  But I was running short on time so turned around without stopping.  My fingers were sad though.  At the turn-around I was feeling fairly good but not long after turning around my fingers froze and were wishing for a steaming hot latte.  Instead I would have to wait for a nice hot shower.  I was still feeling okay so I ran for another song.  Slowly but surely I am working my way back.

What I'm struggling with is how do I decipher between a normal pain and an injury pain?  Can I push through the pain?  Or do I need to back off?  I'm trying to take this nice and slow but sometimes it is hard.  I feel like I should be farther along than I am.  Or maybe I'm babying my knee too much.  Or not enough.  Stay tuned...

Sun, Sand & Tsunamis?!

I never know what to expect from "beach" vacations because I'm not much of a sun person (the joys of fair skin!) and I'm really not much of a lay around on vacation person.  Plus I knew I was going with people who were both sun and lay around people.  How did I get talked into this?  My boss's daughter was playing in a softball tournament and somehow Jessica, Nilufer & I invited ourselves along.  Because I'll take any excuse to go to Hawaii!!  (And the fact that it would help knock off a couple of items on my 33 Things list didn't hurt either!  Ha!)

Jessica, Nilufer & I left Friday night, expecting a direct flight to Honolulu.  Our direct flight had morphed into a flight with a stop in Oakland.  Something about winds and they needed to stop and refuel.  When I heard winds I thought for sure we were in for a bumpy ride, but no, the flight was actually smooth.  A (my boss) met us at the airport and soon we were at our hotel, which was massive!  The hotel room, not so much, especially with four people.  I was exhausted and went right to bed but didn't end up sleeping too well, drifting in and out of a sleep all night.

We had forgotten to pull the blinds so Saturday morning came early for me.  If the sun is up, I'm usually up.  Nilufer was up as well so we threw on clothes and explored the complex, finding a Starbucks!  Hooray!  We went back to the hotel & got ready.  The forecast called for some clouds with a chance of rain so we decided to go watch some softball.  We won the first game (yay!) in the last inning off a home run.  We weren't so lucky in the second game but we got to watch K (A's daughter) pitch, which was really fun.  In between games we had lunch a little Greek restaurant.  When the games were over, we drove back to the hotel and later met up with K for dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe.

We remembered the blinds on Sunday morning, and so were able to sleep in, at least a little bit.  The forecast still was predicting rain, but you wouldn't know it from the clear blue sunny skies.  A left to watch softball and Jessica, Nilufer & I meandered down to the beach.  I proceeded to drop my stuff off and go directly into the ocean.  I am such a water girl.  I would never have thought that about myself, but when I moved to Houston, I realized I really missed the water.  I tried swimming and after a few awkward tries my knee finally cooperated (somewhat).  If I kept my knee straight I was fine for the most part.  It felt so good to be in the water though!  And then I got out and realized I was starting to get sunburned.  Boo.  I lathered on more sunscreen and we left the beach to have lunch, and our first fruity drink!  I love that it is always fruity drink o'clock on vacation!

Guess what?!  We had lunch at the hotel restaurant (Tropics, where we would end up eating several times).  And they filmed a scene from the new Hawaii 5-0 there!!  I was so excited when I found out!  After lunch we had scheduled massages.  While it wasn't the best massage I'd ever had, it wasn't the worst.  I also got my fingernails painted a deep blue, which is so unlike me (no toes as I just can't stand to have people touch my feet - one of these days I'll get over it, hopefully).  And the best part - it had started absolutely pouring while we were in the spa, so we missed the rain!  We walked down the beach and then finally ended up at Duke's for dinner.  And after dinner it was Hula pie.  Oh yum!!  We walked back to the hotel along the beach.  I love listening to the waves and watching them break and crash.

We had grand plans for Monday to go to the Dole Plantation, North Shore & the Polynesian Cultural Center.  Unfortunately, even though I was up early, our plans were for naught as by the time we arrived at the rental car desk all the cars were gone.  Boo.  Good thing we are on vacation and not worried about plans.  Oh wait, this is me we are talking about.  So yeah, good thing I'm learning to be flexible.  Or at least attempting to be flexible.  Beach anyone?  Once again I probably spent too much time in the water because as I got out I could feel my back burning.  Time to apply more sunscreen and cover up.  We had lunch at the hotel and then hit the pool.  I was not feeling the sun (or really I was feeling the sun too much) so I left Jessica & Nilufer to the direct sun and found a less sunny spot to chill by the pool.  But even with the shade and covering up the damage was done.  I have had worse sunburns (Cabo comes to mind), but this one was still bad.  Let's just say I did not have the most comfortable night.  The sunburn sucked all my energy.  I sat very carefully at dinner (which was at an Irish pub) and tried not to move that night while I slept.  But I think I tossed and turned quite a bit trying to find a spot that wouldn't irritate my sunburn.

The original plan for Tuesday morning included a hike up Diamond Head with the softball team.  A hike starting at 8 a.m.  Fortunately the 8 a.m. start time became a 10 a.m. start time!  We met up with the team and they were off and I was in my familiar spot of the back of the pack.  I was extremely careful and held on to all handrails (no more falling off cliffs for me!).  The trail seemed to go up and up and up and there was way over 200 stairs!!  But finally I was at the top and the view was amazing!!  Best part about the way down?  The shave ice at the bottom.  Yum!!  We met back up with K for lunch at Cheeseburger in Paradise.  Do you know what was across the street from Cheeseburger in Paradise?  Yogurtland!!  Make your own frozen yogurt concoctions.  It was quite yummy.  We walked back to the hotel after our yummy yogurt.  I was still feeling the effects of too much sun the day before so I explored the hotel a bit and hung out on our balcony while Jessica & Nilufer went to the beach.  We met back up with A & K for dinner at Duke's and a walk back to the hotel along the beach.

Wednesday morning we woke up early to go snorkeling!  I had heard from several people that the place to go snorkeling was Hanauma Bay but you had to get there early.  So we were up early and on the road to Hanauma Bay.  I really enjoyed the snorkeling.  We saw lots of fish (but no turtles).  And even a rainbow fish!  We were starving by this time so found a pancake house (next to a Ross which was good because some of us may have forgotten extra undergarments and when I say some of us, I was one of the some.  Yes, I forgot an extra bra.  Dang it!  But I wasn't the only one!).  The pancakes were yummy, especially with coconut syrup!  We made a quick stop at the Halona Blowhole, which on a good day you can see water spray up like a geyser.  We were not there on a good day, but it was still beautiful scenery.  We continued along to the "easy" hike to see the Makapuu Lighthouse.  It was only a mile, but it was a mile that just kept going up and up.  We stopped along the way to watch whales!!  And saw one jump!  The hike to the lighthouse ended up being kind of a gyp since we didn't get too close to the lighthouse.  There was potentially a way to get closer, but there was a gate and we have learned our lesson about hiking on closed trails!! :)  We ended up at Kailua Beach, which is purported to be one of the best beaches, but you wouldn't know that from the bathroom.  It was really cold and windy by this time and so we chilled on the beach for awhile before heading back to Waikiki.  Dinner was at the Italian restaurant at the hotel.  It was not the best Italian I've ever had.

Thursday would end up being the most stressful day of the trip, but let's start at the beginning, with breakfast, before the stress happened.  Breakfast was at Tropics, our favorite hotel restaurant.  I had Bananas Foster French Toast, which is as good as it sounds!!  Our original plan had been to go with the team to Pearl Harbor, but the team ended up going on Wednesday after their games got rained out.  We thought about taking the bus but after finding out it would take an hour, we decided to cab it.  Good call on our parts.  I'm not much of an audio tour person, but the audio tour was really good.  The site was so amazing and so solemn.  I've been fascinated by WWII for a long time and in eighth grade did a report on the attack on Pearl Harbor so it was incredible to be there and hear stories of the survivors.  Walking across the memorial and seeing the outline of USS Arizona in the waters below - such devastation happened, and yet it was so calm looking out across the water.

After our morning at Pearl Harbor, we took the bus back to the hotel to get ready for the luau!  We took a charter bus out to the middle of nowhere (or so it seemed).  The luau was fun!  Several of us (me included!) got on stage to learn how to hula.  The food was so-so but I enjoyed the entertainment!!  It was towards the end of the night when we first found out about the potential for a tsunami heading to Hawaii.  I didn't believe it at first.  The entire ride home I was checking and CNN.  And looking out the window and the enormously long lines at gas stations.  A tsunami was definitely heading towards Hawaii.  Oh crap.  What do you do in a tsunami?  Head for the hills.  My first inclination was to jump in the rental car and drive for the mountains.  What we were told though was that we were in the "vertical safety zone" which meant our hotel room was above the fourth floor so we should be fine.  Not knowing we decided to stock up on supplies - water and chocolate.  Looking back, maybe should have gotten bread and peanut butter instead of the chocolate and string cheese, but I wasn't thinking too clearly.  We were laughing hysterically at this point at our supplies.  Even though our hotel assured us we were safe, because we were on the beach and because A wanted to be with K and we decided to all stick together, we packed up bags and headed to K's hotel, which was several blocks inland.  I'm still not sure what I packed or why I packed what I did, but soon we were loaded up and leaving our hotel.  It was eerily quiet walking to K's hotel.  The quiet was interrupted by the sirens were going off every hour.  Jessica, Nilufer & I ended up sleeping on the floor of K's hotel room.  And sleeping isn't the best description of what we did - tossing and turning while listening to or watching the news is a better one.  Finally it hit, but with minimal impact to our area.  Thank goodness!!

I think I may have mentioned before I deal with stress by laughing.  But in no way do I mean to trivialize the earthquake.  From the moment I heard tsunami I went into my own little survival bubble.  It wasn't until the next morning when I was still alive that I was able to process the horrible devastation in Japan.

Friday morning the sun was out but we were still under a tsunami advisory.  We had planned to pick up a rental car today and visit the Dole Plantation and the North Shore.  Since we were all exhausted and I was a bit leery of leaving the area until the advisory was lifted, we ended up staying at the hotel.  Jessica, Nilufer & A headed to the beach since in their words there wasn't enough sun at the pool.  But me being a rule follower, went to the pool.  There was still an advisory in place and they were asking people not to go to the beach.  So I listened and did not go to the beach.  I met back up with Jessica & Nilufer for lunch at Tropics and then it was back to the pool.  They sort of joined me at the pool - they were in a more sunny area and I was in the less sunny area.  We ended up calling it an early night and went up to our room to watch a movie, but basically ended up falling asleep.

We woke up early Saturday morning so we could go whale watching.  The boat ride was really smooth!  There were whales to watch, but they were too fast for my camera.  After it was over I realized I should have spoken whale and asked them to slowly jump out of the water!!  Ha!  I crack myself up.  We planned to meet up with A later on to catch one more softball game, but in the meantime it was our last afternoon by the pool.  Once again we split up - me to the not as sunny side of the pool (which ended up being fairly sunny today) and Jessica & Nilufer to the sunny side.  And before you know it, it was time to go watch softball.  After the game ended, we met up with K for dinner at PF Chang's and then it was a stop at Yogurtland for dessert.  We then went back to the hotel to pack. 

We had just a little bit of time Sunday morning so we walked along the beach, had brunch at Tropics, and one last fruity drink!  Then it was time to say aloha!


View from the top of Diamond Head

Fruity Drink O'Clock

At Hanauma Bay



Makapuu Lighthouse

Kailua Beach

Pearl Harbor - USS Arizona Memorial

Ah, Hawaii

At the luau

Fruity Drink O'Clock