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January 31, 2008

Oven Baked Chicken (173)

It's been raining here on Oahu almost non-stop for like a week or two, which was rather strange until we went to pick up my niece from school and saw that the Punahou Carnival was setting up shop. It's a local joke that whenever the Punahou Carnival comes around, it just rains and rains.

I find myself constantly hungry lately and so I need to make a habit of bringing in more healthy snacks to last me throughout the day so that I don't end up snacking on things from the vending machine like I am right now. !! I know...

I had to do some research on Weight Watchers for work and found that for Hawaii residents on HMSA or Kaiser, they are running a special where the registration fee is waived and you can get vouchers to pay for meetings. If you've ever thought about joining, now is a great time! The offer is valid until February 24th. Check it out here! I'm not getting paid for linking that, I just thought it's an awesome deal and since WW worked so well for me of course I'm glad to refer people to the program. :)

Today I have oven baked chicken for lunch. It's probably rather hefty in points because of the butter and thigh and crust, but it is really yummy and there was a lot left last night since the kids ate chicken long rice for dinner, so I felt bad and took a piece. I made the carrot flower because last night I was trying to think of a way to arrange the baby carrot sticks nicely and a flower came to mind. It looked a lot nicer arranged on the cutting board, but I can't make the chicken thigh any flatter. I had no idea what to fill the side with since I forgot to take salad, so I peeled orange slices. In hindsight, I probably should have added some foil underneath so that the juice didn't run into my chicken.

I also brought a cup of grapefruit and the corn chowder from two days ago to help fill up the rest of the day. Today we did push-ups and dips, but as I mentioned before, my arms are weak so I didn't do very many. I'll probably do my squats and lunges at home tonight.

January 30, 2008

Hamburger Patty (172)

Yesterday the office peeps forgot to do our exercises, so in a shocking turn of events, I did them at home on my own. Monday I participated twice, so I did a total of 120 squats and maybe 30 push-ups, cause I'm such a weeny when it comes to arm stuff. Yesterday I did 75 squats, 60 lunges, and 40 push-ups by myself at home. And I'm not sore! Yay!

After my bad eating yesterday I'm back up to 128, but since there are no more lunch meetings this week, hopefully I can get back on track. I had taken some of my MIL's corn chowder to eat, but I forgot to bring it in today. :( It's so cold here lately, which is really nice because when its hot on Oahu, sleeping is a pretty miserable experience. By the way, by cold I am talking about "Hawaii cold". This equals about 70 degrees or so. Yes, yes, laugh it up mainland people. I'm the one really laughing. Bwahaha!

Today I have one hamburger patty cut in half. There was empty space around it so I added some sliced up mini bell peppers for color and filler. On the other side I have a small star shaped onigiri with some chazuke sprinkles on it. I tucked in some leftover edamame that I'd defrosted the other day and then on top before I closed the box, I added a small yellow bear container full of ketchup.

It's been about a week and a half since I pierced my ears and my right lobe is a little swollen. I keep disinfecting it and am trying to sleep on the other side of my head, but it's still puffy and it's getting difficult to grab the stud to twist it now. Anyone have advice on how to get it to stop swelling? I clean it 3 times a day as I'm supposed to, but it's been like this for several days now. At least it doesn't hurt though!

I am returning to my FFXI radio show this Sunday. Although we had moved the show at the beginning of the year to Sundays, we never did get around to doing a Sunday show. After I announced it, I realized that this weekend is Superbowl Sunday, but we are going to do a show anyway. It'll be a little sad, since we will be short one host as our friend ImperialNinja has left us, but we'll try to make do without him as best we can. If you play FFXI and are interested, tune in on Sunday from 2 PM to 5 PM Pacific time by going to It's been a really rough year and hopefully this radio show can bring some light back into 2008.

January 29, 2008

Lunch Meeting @ The Willows

I have no bento today as I will be at a lunch meeting at The Willows. They have a great Hawaiian buffet and I'll be sure to have my camera on hand this time! I don't think I've ever arranged buffet food on my plate with this blog in mind, so we'll see how I do. I think I'll have to check everything out before I start. My co-worker and I have said that we'll make sure we watch what the other person eats so that we don't go crazy. This morning I was 127.7! I'll update later tonight with photos as I forgot to bring my USB cable to work with me.


Ok, so all did not go exactly as planned. I ate a whole lot of food. Most of it was vegetables, but I still overate and then I couldn't resist getting a little cup of strawberry cheesecake and a small piece of haupia. D:

In the middle is some Caesar salad with a couple of croutons. On the sides going clockwise starting with the pea salad is a tomato salad with mozzarella balls, a small bit of pasta salad, bean sprouts namul, misoyaki butterfish, seared ahi and tofu salad, cantaloupe and watermelon, ahi limu poke, and lomilomi salmon.

I ate everything except the bean sprouts namul, which tasted rather weird. I ate all the poke, but it had limu on it, which I can't stand because it tastes exactly like the ocean. On the side I tried some turkey and rice soup, but that had a heavy coconut milk taste, so I decided to skip it (which is pretty dumb considering I ended up eating haupia anyway). I also had a small cup of chicken long rice, which was really yummy!!

It was a pretty darned expensive lunch and I was lucky to score this through work. The buffet price was around $29.00 if I remember correctly. They had other things that looked good like roast turkey, laulau, roast beef, chicken, and lots of other desserts, but there's only so much room in my tummy. The worst thing I ate on this place was probably the pea salad, which obviously contains a lot of mayo, but is still really yummy! The Willows is a very nice restaurant in the middle of a lot of buildings and I had my first baby shower here. Located in the middle of a rather icky area, it's kind of like a Hawaiian oasis.

January 28, 2008

Rotisserie Chicken (171)

I had another uhh... interesting weekend this week. As I mentioned before, I drank alcohol for the first time in my life two weeks ago. All that was really left was to find out how much I needed to drink before I got drunk and so with a lot of leftover beer in the fridge from a UFC party forever ago, Mr. Pikko suggested we have an experiment.

We had some Budweiser Select and some Fire Rock Ale that our friend had left here. I drank the Budweiser first and it took me quite a while. The ale tasted better, but still didn't taste that great. The second ale went down quicker and by the time he gave me the last Bud, I drank that in like a minute. After that one, the crappy wine we had bought didn't taste so bad and I downed a little less than a glass all at once. I was ready for more, but thankfully I was drinking with my husband and he cut me off. So anyway, the lesson here is that anywhere else, I shouldn't drink more than two beers because after that I become a snowball slowly rolling down a hill.

All in all, I thought it was fun, but it's not something I'm going to do very often. The next morning I woke up really early and seriously hungry and I made a pan of fried rice (and ate half of it), drank like 3 glasses of water, then went back to bed. I woke up and weighed myself and was completely horrified to find that I weighed 129.3!!! As of this morning, I am 129.9!!! *sob* It was probably a combination of eating Korean food Friday, then sushi for dinner, plus all my leg exercises and walking, but still WTF... My pants are really freaking tight today and I've got to do some serious good eating for a while to get back to where I was. No more Sapporo Ichiban saimin or cinnamon bagel chips or ice cream...

Costco chickens have got to be the best thing ever because 1) they're really cheap at $4.99 fully cooked and delicious 2) my kids actually EAT them and 3) they can last for two lunches, a dinner, and a bento. We ate at Arby's Saturday, thinking fast food was cheaper but that came out to around $23. We ate sushi for dinner and that was around $25. Zippy's can run around $18. With those numbers, Costco chickens win all around. I sliced this up after it had been refrigerated because when you slice it hot, it crumbles up.

Costco chicken goes really well with Nori Komi furikake, so I sprinkled some of that onto my rice. I've got about half a cup, so this bento is 2 points. I have some little carrot sticks and a tomato bottle with some soy sauce to put on the chicken. On the side there are chopped up mini bell peppers, which are really sweet. On top are three skewers of shelled edamame.

I bought myself a new bento box last year when I ordered an item from JList for my grandma. This one is a pale green Totoro box by Skater, who makes awesome boxes.

A Ninja Sushi just opened by where we live and I've eaten there twice already. They have really beautiful sushi pictures and so far I've had their Osaka Maki and their Tiger Maki. Once again, I forgot to take pictures. :(

I had Mr. Pikko take a picture of me for some ZAM marketing thing, but I'm posting it here to show off my BJ Penn tank top. Too bad you can't really see much of it, lol. The front has his face and his signature. The back says "Just Scrap Sexy".

January 25, 2008

Updates & Pics

I gave birth to two kids naturally without painkillers but yesterday I found out that this doesn't completely knock me off the List of Complete Wussies. My new office is a place that promotes healthy work environments and so yesterday before a meeting I participated in a little 4 minute exercise bit. I thought eh, 4 minutes, no big deal. LOL

We did these torturous things called squats and dips. As the day progressed my legs began to catch on fire and by the time I went to bed I was wimpering like a little girl and ended up taking Tylenol. I know, pathetic. I limped all 20 minutes to work today.

I'm sorry for the lack of bento, but this week has been another tough one and I actually didn't eat lunch for a couple days. That aside though, I only just got my camera back from my brother yesterday and today I have no bento because on Fridays my co-workers like to go out for lunch. I will probably still do lunches some Fridays, but just so people know why I might not have a bento at the end of the week I thought I'd mention it. I will definitely take pictures of my food anyway!! I haven't eaten lunch yet today, so nothing so far.

I mentioned a trip to Hilo earlier this week. Here is a picture that I took with my mom and my grandma at the park outside of Miyo's. Three generations! I have a picture with Baby Girl in it too, but she's making this stink face and I think posting pics of her with black on her face is creepy anyway. Plus, my grandma is making the same stinky face.

And then there is the picture I mentioned outside BJ Penn's gym. I wish it was a pic with BJ himself then I could tack that up with my picture with Colt, but oh well. Still get time!

KHON has been showing this frickin' hilarious bit with Colt in it and I found it on YouTube. The dude getting knocked out is Kanoa Leahey, who is one of the hosts of Leahey and Leahey Live, a sports radio show we listen to in the mornings. I guess that must be why I find it so funny.

I just got back from doing more squats and lunges too. If I don't update later today with pics of lunch, assume that I have died of Leg Agonyitus.

Update: We ate Korean food at O-Bok, but I forgot my camera at the office........ /facepalm

January 22, 2008

No Camera!!

I have a bento today, but unfortunately I couldn't take a picture because I don't have my camera with me, awww! I'm eating leftover tonkatsu from Sunday night with rice, bell peppers, and strawberries and blueberries.

I had a very nice long three day weekend and got so much accomplished I can't even believe it myself. It started on Friday, which was my 5 year wedding anniversary with Mr. Pikko. We went to our usual spot, Ruth's Chris, where I got a filet and had my first ever glass of alcohol in 28 years. I've never really seen the appeal in drinking and have always taken pride in my alcohol virginity, but with the year we'd been having I felt this was an appropriate time to start.

I asked our waiter what was a good white wine for a first time wine drinker and I don't think he knew what he was talking about because he pointed me to some list of white wines and steered me to the most expensive one. I think it was called Statesbery or something. Anyway, he brought it and it tasted like ass. Or gasoline. I dunno, whatever, it just tasted frickin' horrible. On the longass list of existing wines out there, that goes onto my "Never Again" list. It took a lot of effort to drink that danged neverending glass.

My filet was made of awesome as usual, especially since I got to have it medium rare instead of medium, which was what I'd had to have for a long time due to pregnancies and breastfeeding, etc. After dinner we went to see Cloverfield, which I thought was really good until it ended with no answers. It was a wild ride of a movie which had no real explanation, which is so typical of JJ Abrams (LOST writer). Short movie, though... After the movie Mr. Pikko suggested we go walking around Waikiki, which I didn't feel like doing since my feet kinda hurt, but it turned out he had a big surprise for me. He'd booked a hotel room in secret and in it was my anniversary surprise! He'd bought me a dozen red roses, a bottle of red wine, a Nintendo DS, a wooden picture frame (for 5th anniversary), an ink cartridge for my printer, a new (old) ball mouse since mine is failing, and something nice to wear. *cough*

It was a very nice evening and made the year feel a lot better. The sucky part is the wine tasted just as shitty as the white at the restaurant, LOL. We woke up really late and he had one more surprise for me, which was to take me to some bar to watch UFC 80: Rapid Fire where BJ Penn would be fighting for the UFC Lightweight Title against Joe "Daddy" Stevenson in Newcastle, England. While we were there I tried some beer and while it was bitter, it tasted a whole lot better than wine did. I tried some of his Bud Light, drank a Coors Light, and then drank a Heinekin. I didn't really like the Heinekin as it was really bitter with a strong aftertaste. I didn't feel too different except for some tingly fingers though. The food at this place was really good though and as I expected, BJ won. He won in a very bloody and dominating fashion, which made for really good watching.

Sunday I went to the mall with my old high school friend Jean. I bought myself a nice new purse and got my ears pierced, which made the bad mood I'd been in feel a lot better. That's another thing I didn't have, pierced ears. Someone gave me a pair of earrings at the FFXI Fan Festival and so they don't go to waste, I decided to get that out of the way too.

Monday was my Grandma's birthday, so we all flew out to my hometown of Hilo to surprise her. We snuck into her house and my mom went to get her and she came out completely baffled that we were all standing in her living room, it was very nice. We went to eat lunch at this Japanese restaurant at Waiakea Villas called Miyo's and the food there was really good! Stupid me, I forgot to take a picture of the bento meal I got. I had a combination lunch of shrimp tempura, sashimi, and sesame chicken. The sesame chicken was by far the best part of the meal. It was light, crispy, and tasted wonderful. Usually Japanese fried chicken tastes really heavy and oily, but this was definitely not the case and I'm really sorry I didn't document it for you all to see! Next time for sure!!

Being in Hilo, I wanted to go check out BJ's gym. He wasn't back from England yet, but I bought a women's tanktop that says "Just Scrap Sexy" on the back, which cracks me up. I have a picture of me and Mr. Pikko (WHICH HE SAYS I CAN POST, OMG) outside the place, but that will have to wait until I get my camera back, which I forgot at my Grandma's house. My brother will bring it back to Honolulu for me today.

For dinner I made everyone go to Cafe 100 so that I could eat a loco moco and get some gravy cheeseburgers, which I feel are the best part about Cafe 100. I am living proof that one weekend of bad eating can mess up your weight in a major way. I was approaching 123 last week and today I was 128.3!! lol Last night, I figured I was porked up so much I might as well just eat the cheeseburger, then eat nicely for a while to get it back off. I rarely go home anyway, so it's not like I'm going to be this bad all the time. D: I'll post my pictures tomorrow with my lunch again!

Also, congrats to my cousin Stef who just gave birth to a baby boy last week!!!

January 18, 2008

Teriyaki Chicken (170)

Today is a day that represents a fresh start to 2008 for me and so from now on I will try my best to keep my chin up and make the best of things. I was at home sick yesterday so I had no bento, but I did get a lot done at home.

For a while now my kids' bedroom has been a real mess, full of boxes of things, toys, old clothes, my scrapbooking desk, etc. I cleaned it all out, moved the crib from our bedroom into theirs so they can sleep in there, moved my scrapbooking desk into my own bedroom, and fixed up the bed so that the two kids can start sleeping in there. Baby Girl was incredibly happy about it when she came home and thanked me over and over for it, claiming that if it ever gets messy again, she promises that SHE will clean it up. Guess the pigs are still flying outside...

This is some baked teriyaki chicken from Wednesday that I had intended to make for bento yesterday. I have a small bit of rice, some mixed veggies, and some sliced mini bell pepper. Yesterday Buddy asked for a red bell pepper for breakfast. I have no idea why. He stared at it for a couple minutes, then demanded Cheerios and proceeded to eat three full bowls. Lucky for me I actually had Cheerios.

On the side I have blueberries and a wedge of Laughing Cow Light Swiss cheese. I have a Fuji apple the size of Pluto to snack on. I was 123.7 yesterday, so I'm slowly going down in weight. I think as long as I keep up my good portioning, I should be able to reach my goal weight by the time May and the wedding comes around. Which reminds me, I have to measure myself so my friend can buy my dress...

January 16, 2008

Mapo Tofu

It was the strangest thing this morning. Pigs were flying around in the sky in droves! I was confused for a bit, then I realized that they were out because the University of Hawaii announced this morning that Greg McMackin is our new head football coach, meaning that UH... ***UH*** hired someone in 9 days. This my friends, is a miracle!!

The flying pigs make my bento today very fitting because 1) it's got pork in it and 2) it went flying.

I love my MIL's mapo tofu because it's tasty, moist, and not spicy. I added shelled edamame and grated carrot for color so that put together with the pink container, it would make the food look more attractive. Unfortunately, when I took it out to the car, I made the fatal mistake of placing the bento box onto the top of the car where I ALWAYS forget things.

We didn't hear it fly off so I don't know where it is, but this box is presumed lost which makes me so sad because it was a wonderfully shaped box and one of my matching Putifresh containers. I'm hoping that it is just sitting nicely in our parking stall at home, but I won't kid myself. **sigh** I didn't even figure it out until I got to work. Clearly I accidentally packed my head into my lunch this morning along with the food.

I think to console myself I will have to go down to Marukai and buy myself some new bento goodies. Bwahahaha!

January 15, 2008

Last Legs Bento

I have a very strange bento today because I had to use up a lot of old food before it expired. We had pork chops last night but I didn't take any since I had a pot of rice about to dry up in my cooker. When I was looking in the fridge for something to put in with it I noticed a tub of kim chee crab that I had forgotten about. It actually expired yesterday but I figure one more day isn't going to kill me. *knock on wood*

The rice was actually starting to turn a light yellow color because I cooked it on Sunday so I mixed it up with a lot of furikake then added nori punch faces. These punches are so great because when you have several you can just mix and match the eyes and mouths. I was lazy so I just shoved all the crab into the middle. I have an avocado that I forgot at work, so I'll use that to help with the spicyness. I added two carrot flowers to the middle and two last sprigs of wilted parsley before finally dumping it. This is why I'm calling this my "Last Legs" bento, lol.

Buddy saw me slicing the carrots and wanted the flower outlines, so I gave them to him, thinking how lovely it is to have a son that eats veggies without blinking an eye.

Then I found regurgitated, chewed up carrot on the carpet in front of him in my bedroom. He was grinning ear to ear, the little fart.

I want to thank everyone for being so supportive and posting nice comments. I really appreciate everyone being so encouraging!!

January 14, 2008

Star Spaghetti

I learned a lot of things this weekend. For one, it's a mega pain in the ass to have to do anti-fraud stuff to prevent identity theft. We changed bank accounts, called Social Security, put fraud alerts out, etc. Two, I learned that it's best to make completely sure that your friendly neighborhood burglar did actually take your social security cards because if you should find them later, you feel pretty stupid.

But we won't talk about that. Let's just say I'm relieved and leave it at that. The good news is there might be a lead on who did it. Hooray!

With our house in complete disorder (15% from burglar, 70% from kids, 15% from general messiness) I had to do some cleaning and this led me to start thoroughly cleaning out the kids' room, which has become a disastrous storage area that things get literally tossed into when guests come over. What I learned from this was that closet doors are very frustrating to put back in, so it's best not to accidently rip them off track. Then I learned that I still fit into my prom dress from 1996, which was frickin' awesome. I have to get that thing cleaned and preserved or something. Baby Girl was very upset and loudly demanded, "WHY DIDN'T YOU BUY ONE FOR ME, MOMMY???" I found pictures too and I thought about scanning them, but then decided my head was too fat. The last thing I learned was that when you drop a couple dozen child hangers into unraveled and tangled kite string, you are in for some hell and the people near you will have to cover their ears.

My MIL had a lot of leftover spaghetti from earlier in the week and I was more than happy to offer to take it home because then I didn't have to cook. Even after we ate, there was still a lot left so I brought some for lunch today. I didn't have much time because I was lazy this morning, so all I did to decorate it was to put some star shaped cheese and then a piece of parsley, which if you look carefully, is terribly wilted.

On Sunday we decided to eat cheap and had lunch from McDonald's. Happy Meal toys really aren't what they used to be...

If you look at this picture you will see this bizarre looking toy that came with the meal. Look at the instructions... I mean... what? Is it just a stencil and the weird looking creature holds it?? There is a little lever on the side and if you move it up and down, the freaky thing makes like he's manhandling his invisible alien peepee. Great toy, really.

January 11, 2008

No bento

I know some of you are probably thinking, dude, wtf Pikko? What's with the sporadic bentos?? Thursday we had a potluck at work, so I had none. Apparently we have these once a month, so maybe when I have more brain power, I can remember to bring my camera to work to photograph ALL the food we get to eat at my new rockin' workplace. I made the biggest KCCA salad ever and it was a big hit. Woot!

As I've mentioned, 2008 hasn't been very good to me. It hasn't been great for a couple people I care a lot about either. I lost a good friend. I came close to < insert crappy situation I'm not ready to name yet > and am still dancing on the edges of it. I had to leave my radio show. And it turns out that 2008 is not done pelting me with poop.

Last night we came home and our house had been broken into. We're all safe and my computer is still here, but they took cash from some Christmas cards, Baby Girl's name-engraved $600 Hawaiian bracelet that I bought while I worked at a jewelry company a few years ago, and our folder with our Social Security cards in it.

All in all, not a lot of stuff, but the identity theft stuff is obviously a large concern. The bracelet I was saving to give to my daughter when she turned 16, so that had a lot of sentimental value for me. We called the cops and she became suddenly terrified of the police coming by, insisting that I carry her when he showed up. After he left though, she used her keen detective skills to solve the case, proclaiming to us that she knew whodunit.

"It was the beavers! They came and took my bracelet without asking and they snatched it away! They should go to time-out! Adult time-out! They have to go in the helicopter!"

The adult time-out and helicopter references are from when we saw a helicopter flying around trying to find what we thought was a guy who broke out of prison, which we told her was "adult time-out".

I haven't felt very good at all lately, but I'm trying to cheer myself up by talking about happy things and being my old self. It doesn't always work, but if it works half the time, that's better than nothing, right? I hate to drape my blog in blue, but it can't always be helped.

January 9, 2008

Salmon w/ Pasta (166)

Last night I called up my brother to go out for dinner so we could talk about my wonderful 2008 year. We met at Ala Moana and ate at California Pizza Kitchen. Yes, we have those in Hawaii! lol

I was going to order the Chicken Piccata, which I really enjoy, but then saw that they had a new salmon dish with pasta and ended up getting that. As usual, it was mega freaking huge and I could only eat about a third of it. This is one of the best parts about my diet with Weight Watchers: I really learned to watch my portions. Last year I probably would have snarfed that whole plate down no problem and then shared a dessert with someone. No more! :D

So anyway, I have a rather large lunch today, haha! The pasta is very lemony, but I still love the taste. The salmon was perfectly crispy on the outside and moist on the inside. I'm really sorry that I picked at both ends of the salmon because it makes for very weird looking bento fish, don't you think? It's got this little missing piece, like some bento monster came by and said HMMMM, SALMON!!! and took a bite. *sigh*

On the side is some yummy asparagus. Anyway, I've got a lot to do today. Happy lunching everyone!

January 8, 2008

Roast Chicken (165)

Every day this year so far has been a unique mixture of shit and today is no different, but somehow I feel a little better about things. I'm not sure why. The situation I'm in is just as crappy or worse now, but my head is clear and my emotions in check. Maybe I'm just numb already, which is probably bad.

My lunch today is sliced Sam's Club rotisserie chicken with furikake rice. On the side I have some green salad and tomato. There is French dressing in the little orange container. The green shamrock bottle has some soy sauce for the chicken.

In my crappy 2008 year I do have something awesome and win to look at with glee. Something to look at and squeal, "EEEEEE!!" whenever I feel like I need a picker-upper.

OH YEAH, BABY! That's right!! A pic of me with Colt Brennan!! I was walking through campus to meet Mr. Pikko to go to a UH rally at Bachman Hall when I see Colt standing on the lawn in front of Hawaii Hall. I kinda hung around then went to meet the Mr. I told him we should go back and we waited with two other women until he was done filming the promo. The other ladies got his autograph and I walked behind until he noticed I was there. Mr. Pikko took the pic really quick and my hair got in the way, but it's still a good pic with great lighting! He's really freaking tall, lol! (ie I'm really short)

So yeah, that made my day yesterday.

The highlight of today will be the canning of Herman Frazier. I will have to pinch myself. Someone at UH actually has half a brain for once?! How is this even possible??

January 7, 2008

Veggie Burger

2008 has been a pretty crappy year so far, starting with emotional carry-over from 2007 then going into the UH slaughter at the All-State Sugar Bowl in New Orleans, then heading right into heated debate about whether the UH Warriors football coach, June Jones, would be leaving the school.

This morning when we woke up and checked the Honolulu Advertiser they were reporting the worst, that sources had said that Coach Jones was leaving. As the morning progresses it just gets worse and worse. First, people maintain that it could still reverse and go in our favor, but then we get confirmation from his agent that he is indeed leaving and that he's taking almost the entire mofakin' coaching staff along with him.

I'm extremely disgusted with the University administration. I'm a UH drone to be sure, but even so you still hold out hope that the people making 10x as much as you have some, you know, BRAINS MAYBE?!? I'm leaving for a rally soon and I don't know what it's going to be about now since previously it was supposed to be a supportive rally to get the coach to stay. Now I just hope it's a head hunting riot that will wake the University up to the pitiful state that it has left this school in and that in the end we get rid of that immensely incompetant and seemingly completely uncaring athletic director we have had to suffer with named Herman Fraizer.

Anyway, on to more cheerful, on-topic things: my bento today is a vegetarian bento because I had no idea what else to use. I have a veggie pattie from Costco cut into fourths along with a slice of whole wheat bread cut into fourths to make a nice sandwich. In the yellow container I have ketchup for the sammies.

On the side I have two silicone cups filled with edamame on one side and fresh raspberries on the other. I'd write more, but have to leave for the rally now. Maybe I can get on the news!! lol

January 1, 2008

Happy New Year!!

I feel age creeping upon me.

I can tell this not by wrinkles in my face or pain in my joints or spots of forgetfulness here and there (I've always had those!), but by what I was doing tonight at my mommy-in-law's house. Baby Girl was having fun popping the little Pop Pop fireworks and I was sweeping up the rubbish with a broom and dust pan. I always remember hating that job during New Year's time, sweeping up the rubbish after a long night of popping fireworks. And there I was, sweeping it up and not minding at all. GAH!!!!

It's nearly 2 am on January 1st here in Hawaii and I've just finished washing the smoke out of my hair and vigorously brushing the mochi from my teeth. Since I know I have a lot of non-Hawaii blog readers, I thought I'd start the year off with some New Year's mochi to show people what I do out here in the middle of the ocean to bring in a brand new batch of 366 days. (leap year!)

Since I'm Japanese, I grew up eating mochi for New Year's. Some people eat it fresh while it's still chewy, but I can only handle maybe 2 or 3 bites before I start feeling gross because really all you're doing is eating gobs of plain rice with nothing on it but some mochiko flour. People buy big ones and stack them up and place a tangerine with a leaf on it on top. Mochi goes into ozoni, which is the traditional New Year's soup. My aunty gave me a recipe with two very nice bowls for it, but I've never really made it myself. It was one of those things I never really appreciated until I was grown up. I used to pick at the kelp knots and eat the sides off, fish out the mochi to eat, then kinda sneak away from the table without eating the rest. I know, so lame. I fry my mochi.

Anyway, for some reason Mr. Pikko is so terribly proud to be Japanese, but doesn't eat mochi or ozoni, which makes me nuts. So I don't make soup, I just buy myself mochi cakes at Foodland and eat them until I feel like I'm getting too fat or until I spot mold on them (which happens shockingly fast). My mom and my grandma used to just wash the freaking mold off. Can you believe that?! One year my best friend came up to my grandma's house and I was like omfg grandma, she's never eaten New Year's mochi!! So they make some and it smells great and all, until I bite into it and you can clearly taste the mold on it. I knew she could taste it too, but she ate it anyway. Such a loyal friend. Yes, she's still alive, thank Bob.

Mochi is usually made by machine now, but I had the honor of attending a real mochi pounding back in intermediate school with my ex-boyfriend. That experience has stuck in my mind ever since. Here is a video of a traditional mochi pounding. You can see in the middle of the video that someone has to flip the mochi around in between hammer whacks. It takes great timing and occasional people get their fingers squished.

This is my batch of mochi this year, already some are eaten from yesterday. I like to eat three at a time for some reason, don't ask me why. Maybe cause it fits in my little pan so nicely. I put a little bit of olive oil, turn the heat to medium, then put in three cakes.

I let one side cook until just slightly crispy, then I flip them over and cover the pan so that the heat puffs up the mochi.

Usually I'd have let this brown a bit more, but I was in a hurry to eat and blog and go to bed, but these are my mochi all puffed up and ready to come out to be eaten by me!

My mom and my brother love to eat their fried mochi suffocating in kinako or toasted soybean flour, but I find it a little too sweet and prefer to follow my dad's way of using sugar and shoyu. I guess to someone who doesn't know, it doesn't look very yummy, but it is.

Watching the fireworks tonight made me realize that New Year's in Hawaii is probably a very unique experience. I know on the mainland people are probably freezing their asses off and I have no idea whether people are even allowed to pop fireworks at their homes. When I was growing up aerials were still legal because I remember buying Roman Candles at the store. Then they got outlawed and really all that did was increase the amount of aerials you saw because people smuggled them in and suddenly it was THE thing to have. My family would go the rounds to all the family houses, Aunty K's, Jichan's house, then finally we'd end up at my Grandma's house where my three Oahu cousins would be there lighting up all day and night with my brother.

I was the chicken shit cousin who reached her hand out super super far and ran away screaming as soon as I saw sparks and even then I usually only would brave the fountains. I refused to use a sparkler to light anything because I couldn't tell when it was lit. Later on I'd eventually be brave enough to light little bottle rockets, but I'd still light them in a running stance. I was so panty that I was even scared popping those confetti champagne bottles cause I didn't want it to blow up in my hand. My cousins would taunt me by snapping the Pop Pops between their fingers, telling me to do it cause it doesn't hurt.

One of the biggest things years ago was the red firecrackers. We burned these to scare away evil spirits from the coming year. There'd be horrific piles of red rubbish all over the streets of Hilo and you could tell who were the big shots by the ones that had the biggest piles because they spent the most on their red crackers. People in Hilo have tall tall bamboo poles for stringing up the crackers and then for days afterwards, would bitch and moan about the red paper stuck in their driveways, long turned white because of the rain. But then they started requiring permits for each set of crackers and that just kinda killed it for a lot of people.

Now you can buy paperless red crackers without permits, which I don't understand because I had thought the whole point of the permit was to get the smoke levels down. These red crackers generate retarded amounts of smoke and the paperless, permit-less ones don't seem to generate any less in my opinion. Those were the days though. We'd watch from inside the house and though it would hurt your ears, it was a good kind of hurt. I'm still proud of the years that I listened to them pop without covering my ears. At midnight you could hear the whole town popping their red crackers. The "Duck" brand was "da bes' one" cause almost all the rolls would be popped. I miss those years and am glad I can still remember them.

I've lived on Oahu for 10 years now and it has it's own unique thing too. Tonight on the news we watched about how some guy in Palolo got his house raided by the cops and 2 TONS of aerials got confiscated. Haha! I think all those just got redistributed. *cough* As soon as it turns nighttime, if you're high up you can see aerials popping everywhere. Most people on the mainland probably go to see a fireworks show put on by the town or something like that but here you can just sit in your house and watch the people on this island go freakin' bananas. And when it gets 15 minutes to midnight it's just insanity. From my mother in law's house you can see literally thousands of aerials going off all across the West Oahu side. It just goes on and on and on. You can still hear the red crackers, but on Oahu it's more the BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! of rockets and aerials. It's truly amazing and I do think this is a great place to greet the new year.

It's almost 3 am now and I really have to get to bed. My kiddies actually made it to midnight so hopefully I get to sleep in tomorrow. HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!