Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Pearl Harbor

There is so much to do and see on the island of Oahu. We haven't seen too many sights because we knew that visitors would inevitably come and we would get bored of visiting the same tourist destinations again and again, so we were saving our trips for those special occasions!

My parents were here in March, so we made our first trip out to the Pearl Harbor memorials. We visited the museum of the Pacific Air Force, which was small, but still neat. We also toured the USS Missouri, where Japan surrendered to the US in 1945.

The most memorable part of the day was the trip out to the USS Arizona Memorial. I knew they had built the memorial to this ship that had been destroyed during the attack of Pearl Harbor in 1941, but I didn't realize that the Arizona herself was still there, what was left of her, anyway. The navy has shuttle boats set up to take passengers from the ticket sight to the memorial out in the middle of the harbor. As I approached the white, sleek memorial I felt such a surge of emotion: gratitude for the young men who gave their lives on that day, and for all the service men and women who continue to put themselves in harms way and grief for the numerous, numerous losses of life that day.

Words can't even express how I felt as I stepped into the memorial and looked out and saw the sunken hull and mess of burned metal that became a graveyard for so many that day.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Best Field Trip Ever!

Saturday we, along with another family, had the great pleasure of being guests at the home of a tropical horticulturalist and his wife in Kaneohe. We decorated Easter eggs (fresh from their own chickens!), played on the swing set, visited with the goats, ate a yummy lunch, and toured the grounds. Cinnamon trees, coffee trees, vanilla vines, papaya, bananas, taro, ginger, plus much, much more were all growing right there in the yard. It was so interesting to see small-scale tropical farming in progress. I learned so much!

Dr. Osgood holding a ripe cacao pod

Vanilla has to be hand-pollinated.

Some Chicken-love

Surprised by the charging dog!

Some male-bonding time

About 6 tangerines and 80 strawberries later...

I mentioned to Mrs. Osgood that if I ever had a yard like that, I would sit outside on the porch all the time to enjoy it. She said there's no time to enjoy it! There's too much work to do to keep it looking that way! Wow, there's a profound life lesson right there. How many area of life can I apply that statement to?

Photos by the Amazing Acadia

Monday, April 5, 2010

Climb Every Mountain...

The latest addition to my SCD cookbook collection arrived last week. It was a substantial book entitled "Ice Dream." And as you can probably guess, the cookbook was chock-full of all-natural, refined sugar-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan ice cream recipes as well as cookie, brownie, compote and sauce recipes to compliment.

M was ecstatic when the cookbook arrived and immediately implored me to make her some. I would have done so instantly, had I not run out of scd-legal vanilla earlier in the week. We went to the commissaries, both on the Air Force base and on the Naval station in search of vanilla, but learned through interrogating the employees that they no longer carry that brand, THE ONLY LEGAL BRAND IN THE ENTIRE STORE, so we had to look elsewhere. I was pretty sure that Costco had a brand of vanilla that would be acceptable, and in large quantities as well, so we made our way back to the very southwestern most corner of the island, only to discover that the Costco brand contains sugar or some derivative thereof. Fortunately, I was able to procure a tub of Hawaiian Organic Christmas Berry Honey, as well as a dozen Gala apples, so we didn't exactly leave empty-handed.

I knew that Whole Foods carried an exquisite brand of Hawaiian vanilla extract that is SCD legal, as well as well as several other brands, but *sigh,* Whole Foods is WAAAAAAAY on the other side of Oahu.

"Mommy, I. Wan......T. Nii Neem," said my sweet little M. And I couldn't refuse her, so off we went across the island in our enormous white van. And they didn't have the Hawaiian vanilla, but they had several other brands that were acceptable. So I bought lots and lots so I wouldn't have to come back anytime soon, as well as some some macadamia nut butter (yum!). And I found gluten-free soy sauce! Hooray!

At this point, it was time for A to go to Karate, so we did that (he had to go without his uniform, because I didn't know when we left the house that morning we wouldn't be going back any time soon!), then headed home, talking the whole way about ice cream, and which flavor we were going to make, and how yummy it would be. So we got home, unloaded all our little people and our groceries and immediately set about making our treat. I mixed this, and poured that, blended this, warmed that. After the final ingredient was added I looked down at the cookbook to read: "Pour into 2 wide-mouth quart-sized jars and refrigerate for at least 6 hours."

Now at this point it was already 7:30 p.m. I had been promising M ice cream all day long. What was I to do? I thought for a moment, then I stuffed the Vita Mix with coconut milk and frozen strawberries and processed until thick. And she thought it was wonderful!