pen rainbow

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Sunday—Our Eggy House Guest

Steve found this little egg on the deck...

Meet Eggy

Lost eggy

This house finch egg may have been the survivor of a raid by scrub jays.  We searched all around and couldn't find the nest.  

It was still warm, so we gave it a temporary home inside of a tiny Santa hat.

The hat is the topper to a Santa wine jacket

I ordered an incubator and an egg candler from Amazon which will arrive on Tuesday (tomorrow). 

A cozy spot

Until then, Eggy will remain tucked into the tiny Santa hat in my homemade incubator—a shoebox on top of a heating pad set on low stuffed with a mohair scarf and covered with an afghan.  

It is a toasty 100°F inside with a little air vent to prevent overheating.  Eggy gets turned every couple of hours.

I will candle the egg in a couple of days to see if I can find a heartbeat or a swirling embryo.  

Until then...we have an house guest. 

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Saturday Finances—Practice Optimism

My new money crush:  Mr. Money Mustache

It's all in your head

Okay, read this...

From Mr. Money Mustache, 22 Febr 2013, "Getting Rich: From Zero to Hero in One Blog Post"

"Here’s how to cut your life costs in half. Start by getting rid of your Debt Emergency if you have one. Live close to workMove to another city if you enjoy adventure. Don’t borrow money for cars, and don’t buy stupid onesRide a bike wherever you can. Cancel your TV serviceStop wasting money on groceriesGive your kids the opportunity to achieve greatness without being pampered. Lose the overpriced cell phones. Learn to appreciate the life-boosting joy of using your own body to get things done. Learn to mock convenience. Practice optimism."

Of course, I love this because a.) I'm a list-lover, and b.) I tend to like a ballsy approach to thinking about money.  

The cast iron skillet piece of this for me is the very last sentence:  Practice optimism.  

The rest of MMM's very smart advice flows from that one vital source.  Given that there are 7 billion people in the world right now, a lot of these folks are going to have a miserable outlook on life.  But, the ones who thrive in optimism are happier.  And, happier people have a better shot at success, financial and otherwise.  

Turn the Optimism Gun on Yourself

To understand what turning the optimism gun on yourself really means, you'll have to link to MMMs page and read the entire post: The Practical Benefits of Outrageous Optimism, 3 October 2012.  It's really good and totally worth the 60 seconds that it will take to read.  Think of those 60 seconds as a little key...well, maybe a crowbar for wrenching open a treasure box of wisdom.

My Two Cents

What I bring to this conversation is age and experience.  I am about 20 years older than MMM with way grown-up adult children who no longer depend on me for anything except motherly advice, which they don't really need or want.  But, I slip into it whenever I run out of anything else to say.  Cat antics and house projects only go so far before I start veering into the land of, "How are things going with you?"  Yikes.

So, applying 20 more years and a 50-Something sensibility to MMMs superb advice for getting rich in one blog post, I would change one thing...

I'm completely on board with giving your kids the opportunity to achieve greatness without being pampered.  Yep, this is a noble cause, and "Amen!" to every part of it.  

Avoiding Ivy League Preschool Syndrome; Better Parenting with Hot Glue; Raising Children Actually Costs Less Than Zero, 12 October 2011 by MMM.

But, I'm going to go out on a limb here and add this piece of parenting advice:  

Don't save for your kids' college education. 

I know I'm the anti-Christ of good parenting for saying it, but kids who have a lock (i.e. know about and expect) on what amounts to a four to seven year scholarship funded by their parents don't appreciate it.  They grow up believing that a college education is a given, not something that they have to earn.

Put the money into aggressive-growth long-term income investments and save it for yourself.  Then, wait and see if your kids want to go to college or live below the poverty line while they're trying to become rock stars.  Let the whole college thing be theirs.


There is always time for gratitude, so thanks to Mr. Money Mustache for fearlessly putting it out there.  I am looking forward to reading all of his posts!

Oh, and thanks to my budget-savvy 30-Something daughter who told me about MMM.  :) 

Friday, May 29, 2015

Friday—Photoshop Layer Styles

Using Photoshop Layer Styles to create beautiful layered fx_2B Day 19_Beach Photo Challenge_Layer Styles

Northstar Summer Sunset

The partially transparent moon shape was created using a Photoshop Layer Style on top of a textured base layer.  Then, the text was added, and it was all stamped to create a single composition.  

My photo of Tahoe was added on top of the moon shape; stamped again, then tweaked in Lightroom & RadLab.

The free font is Pea Noodle's Girlfriends by Kevin & Amanda. 

The texture used on the base layer is called "Sybil" from the Downtown Abbey series by Kim Klassen.

Photoshop PSCC layer style + text on a shape + a hue adjusted texture
+ Lightroom Noritsu Replichrome filter + Radlab faded stylet

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Thursday Mini-Post: Kidcentric Claw Machine

Thank you, Lay's, for inventing the most awesome thing for kids in the history of awesomeness!!

Fave snack chips

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Wednesday—Good For You, Good for The Home: Ohhio Giant Knits

I really like these big, chunky handmade knitted items from Ukranian yarn artist, Anna Mo

giant knit 1_giant pearl 2

Small blanket by Ohhio_$150 on Etsy
photo by ohhio

custom orders in custom colors

Anna Mo's Raspberry Sweater
Available soon on Etsy_Photo by ohhio

make your own with giant yarn balls

Available in a variety of spectacular colors
photo by ohhio

this big

photo by Anna Mo_Ohhio

use giant knitting needles

$100 on Etsy_Ready to ship
photo by ohhio

love the comments on ohhio facebook

see more ohhio on Etsy

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Tuesday's Cupboard—The Poké Shack

This delicious & healthy raw fish dish originated in Hawaii

Sushi-grade ahi tuna is about $28 per pound at Whole Foods.  This dish is best when the fish is very fresh & tender, so spend the money on the good stuff.  $28 divided between 4 servings works out to $7 per serving + a couple of dollars more for the other ingredients.  This is an elegant & superbly delicious meal for under $10 per serving.    

My ahi tuna poké

Ahi Tuna Poké

Serves 4

Poké Ingredients
  • 1 lb. fresh raw sushi-grade ahi tuna (not frozen), cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup shoyu (soy sauce), reduced salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions, tops included
  • 1/4 cup chopped sweet onion—Maui, if you can get it
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger
  • 1 Anaheim chili pepper, cored, seeded & diced
  • Pinch of sea salt to taste (red or black preferred)
  • 2 tsp. toasted sesame seeds (don't skip these) + some extra for sprinkling on top
  • 2 tsp. toasted unsalted macadamia nuts, chopped (optional)

  • Hot, cooked Japanese sushi rice (about a cup per serving)
  • Fresh cut-up lime or lemon (optional)
  • Cracked black pepper
  • 1 container of grape cherry tomatoes

Sauces — Blend & put into squirty bottles.  Store in the fridge.  
  • Homemade wasabi-yogurt-mayo (1/4 c. mayo + 1/2 c. plain Greek yogurt + 3 tsp. wasabi to taste)
  • Simple homemade eel sauce: 1/2 c. soy sauce + 1/2 c. Japanese sweetened rice wine (mirin) + 1/4 c. fine baker's sugar   

On the side:  Terra Tropical chips (available at Safeway & on Amazon)

Make It!

Ahead of time:  Lightly toast the sesame seeds in a small skillet over low-med heat.  Watch them, they burn easily!  

In a large bowl, combine all of the poké ingredients.  Mix lightly & refrigerate before serving or serve right away.

Make the sauces & refrigerate.  Make the rice in a rice maker (allow 45-55 minutes).  

Serve It!
Place hot cooked rice in a bowl.  Top with 1/4 c. poké.  Squirt wasabi-mayo & eel sauce over the top.  Sprinkle on toasted sesame seeds.  Top with a little squirt of fresh lime juice or lemon juice.  Toss a few cherry tomatoes into each bowl.  Top with freshly ground black pepper.

Serve with a handful of crunchy Terra chips!

aloha & enjoy

Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day 2015—Pix from Korea

My dad's pix from Korea, c. 1952  


Who took these photos?

My dad mentioned that one of the guys in his unit was an aerial photographer.  There are several large original aerial prints in his album.  The quality of the B&W film & the camera shots are so good that I think that his photographer buddy probably took them.  

I rephotographed the originals with my iPhone; edited them in Snapseed on my phone; sent them by email to my laptop; saved each one into iPhoto; edited each one again for cropping, clarity & sharpness; then, posted all of them to my blog.  

My dad's photography buddy would be amazed at the technology we have today.  No film.  No developing.  Non-destructive editing in our phones.  Immediate sharing on social media with custom privacy controls.  

The album below is a black lacquered padded cover with in-laid Mother-of-Pearl and embossed gold paint.  It is bound with silk braid.  The beautiful iridescent liner paper changes color depending on the light.  Each page is black archival quality, and each photo is secured on black corner mounts.  This book was probably a gift to my dad from the photographer.       

The cover of my dad's photo album

Liner page from my dad's photo album
The paper is actually cream color & more like the white side

Rey Jones_nicknamed "Nines"_17 years old

The base where he was stationed

372nd Bomb SQON
Click HERE for more info on the 372nd Bombardment Squadron
Sitting on the tail of a B-29 Superfortress

At work_giant caliber ammo

Loading gear for paratroopers
My dad is the one holding the pistol.
 It looks like the commander is wearing a sidearm.
The man in the dark suit is a chaplain saying a prayer for the men.
The soldier next to my dad is praying.  He appears to be wearing one of the helmets,
which has been removed from the packs on the ground.  He was
probably one of the troopers on that flight.

Working on a bomber

Loading a machine gun into a turret

In his bunk

Reading at night (before the Computer Age)

Great selfie (before smart phones) & a girly photo

Lookin' all GQ with his squadron buddy

"Far East Air Force" (FEAF) HQ
Check out the old cars!
My dad is on the right, one of the 3 guys walking out of the building.

There are 2 shots of this tree, so it must be a well known monument.
We saw a banyan tree like this in Hana, Maui

A spectacular park
Love the white goose overhead

A street trolley c. 1952

Family day at the park
Love the pelican fountains!

Lovely friend

A young mother & her sweet kids
I want to snuggle them

Darling Korean girl

Back yard clothesline

beautiful girl
love the flowers in her hair

Have a peaceful Memorial Day

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Tahoe Sunday

Memorial Day 2015—officially soggy


Low clouds over Blue Canyon & not a speck of snow

A beautiful sunset following the thunderstorm in the mountains

Have a peaceful Memorial Day

Friday, May 22, 2015

Friday PS Gallery—Preset Styles in Photoshop

2B Lesson #19_Curves & Preset Styles

Adding Style & Texture to Kauai2015 Pix

ImpressionsVI_"Excavation" texture by Leslie Nicole_French Kiss Collections
Sun Faded Photo style preset_PSCC_aloha text
"Pineapple Demo" free font by Måns Greäck_Fontspace
My hat & Silver Glitter Reef flip flops

ImpressionsVI_"Tattered" texture by Leslie Nicole_French Kiss Collections
Sun Faded Photo style preset_PSCC_poke text
Santa's Sleigh_Full_free font by HypoTypo_dafont
My Hawaiian poke recipe & tropical chips

ImpressionsVI_"FrouFrou" texture by Leslie Nicole_French Kiss Collections
Sun Faded Photo style preset_PSCC_Bougainvillea text
Sandwich Paper_Light_free font by Janam
Bougainvillea from the grounds at the Grand Hyatt Poipu, Kauai

Aloha Weekend ❦

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Thursday Kauai Koi GIF

Fishies at the Grand Hyatt Poipu, Kauai

Happy Hawaiian Koi

Aloha fishies


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Good For You, Good for The Tiny Home

Living light on the land with a small (100-400 square feet) footprint

Japanese White-Eye
Shipwreck Beach_Poipu, Kauai
Photo by Steve Nelson

The Tiny Island Life

I'm Liking This Golden Oldie Plan

1.  Pay off the Mother Ship

2.  Sell the Mother Ship 

3.  Buy land in Hawaii with an ocean view 
     •  preferably in biking distance to a poke shack

4.  Build a Tesla-powered self-sustaining small house
     •  Minimum size for residential zoning
     •  Plus, a Tiny House (100-400 square feet)
     •  His & Hers & Sometime Visitors (1 for us, 1 for guests)

5.  Smell the plumeria & learn how to surf
6.  Keep a mainland condo until we get too old to travel

A Tiny House With Big Views

Life Simplified.   Declutter and simplify our lives.  

Tiny House FAQs

Bestie Row Lifelong friends build self-sustaining, modern tiny houses in The-Middle-of-Nowhere, Texas

~~ follow  your  ~~ aloha ~~

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Tuesday's Kauai Cupboard—My Corona

Had to do it!

✓  My Kauai
✓  My cabana
✓  My Miracle Suit
✓  My beach towel
✓  My Corona

Another day in Paradise

Monday, May 18, 2015

Monday—Aloha 'Oe Sing-Along

Until we meet again...

Aloha 'Oe (Farewell to Thee)

To watch, click the YouTube icon
This classic recording of Aloha 'Oe at an old Hawaiian homestead on Oahu in fall of 1991 features Henry Kapono on the right, Cyril Pahinui, Israel "Iz" Kaʻanoʻi Kamakawiwoʻole and Roland Cazimero.  © 1993 Kurt Meyer Productions.

A place to leave leis at the Grand Hyatt Poipu Kauai


Ha'aheo e ka ua i nā                             
Ke nihi a'ela i ka nahele                        
E hahai (uhai) ana paha i ka liko          
Pua 'āhihi lehua o uka                          

Aloha 'oe, aloha 'oe                        
E ke onaona noho i ka lipo 
A ho'i a'e au
'O 'oe nō ka'u ipo aloha
Ke hone a'e nei i
Ku'u manawa
'O 'oe nō ka'u ipo aloha
A loko e hana nei

Maopopo ku'u 'ike i ka nani
Nā pua rose o Maunawili
I laila hia'ia nā manu
Miki'ala i ka nani o ka lipo


Proudly swept the rain by the cliffs
As it glided through the trees
Still following ever the bud
The 'āhihi lehua of the vale

Farewell to thee, farewell to thee
The charming one who dwells in the shaded bowers
One fond embrace,
'Ere I depart
Until we meet again
Sweet memories come back to me
Bringing fresh remembrances
Of the past
Dearest one, yes you are mine own
From you, true love shall never depart

I have seen and watched your loveliness 
The sweet rose of Maunawili
And 'tis there the birds of the love dwell
And sip the honey from your lips


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Aloha Sunday

Keeping the Aloha

Aloha is to be in the presence of Life.

Scarlet hibiscus

To share the essence of one's being with openness, honesty and humility.

It is a way of being, a way of behaving, a way of life.  

It is a commitment to being real.

It is a commitment to accepting others and giving dignity to who they are and what they have to offer.  

Unity, unbroken, to be expressed with harmony

~ ~ Have an aloha week ~~

Friday, May 15, 2015

Friday PS Gallery—Moody Post-Processing

Creating moods in post-processing

MuuMuu Aloha

Post-processing in PSCC_RadLab POS Lens filter & Lightroom

Post-processing in LR_Butterscotch filter by Digital Photo Buzz

Post-processing in PSCC_Curves