February 2009 Archives


Dav bought this box of Tofurky when I was in Japan thinking it'd be a quick yummy meal. It takes 1.5 hours to bake, you need to add veges, make the basting sauce, and gravy. Not super quick.

It's been in our fridge for quite some time. If I'm going to spend 1.5 hours baking, I'd rather do something else than deal with this round lump of tofu. But finally...on a rainy Sunday evening, I gave it a go.

Well...it tastes as weird as it looks. Frankly, a NO-GO for me, although I could understand for a vegan, if they wanted a warm, rather heavy rump of something, this might fit the deal. I never cook meat at home so the fact that it wasn't turkey per se didn't bother me. I liked the basting sauce, the veges that baked with the thing, and the vegan gravy...but I made all that. The lump of stuff...remained a lump too much for me. I had to cover the final dish with tons of gravy because it was needed, but then it looked like a heap of unappetizing gravy. Dav was rather OK with the dish though.

It was such an unlike-me-thing to cook that I was fascinated, and thus took pictures. I'm glad we're not vegan : )

Welcome!

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me today.jpgTo those who are visiting for the first time,

welcome, いらっしゃい!

I've been blogging since 2002, and although my blogging style has changed over the years, I've recorded tons of memories and experiences. I like to capture both the fantastic and mundane. Blogging is really one of the best ways to share what happens everyday in snippets and details. My archives are such a treasure for me. In addition, I've met quite a few people via my blog who have become friends, and that's been very rewarding. My favorite series of posts still are from my old Tokyo blog: this, this, and this.

Blocks

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Recently, her block building has become quite intricate.

Wonderfully lazy cozy weekend

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This weekend rained long and hard. We even had hail! But this kind of weather makes me very happy snuggling at home, and I pretty much spent this 3 day weekend hanging at home with Dav and Tesla. Even better, on Sunday, only Dav left the house twice, to get us all food : )

The cats LOVED that we were home all day lounging around. Katsuo won for staying the most hours under covers in bed.

We did go out to a pretty amazing party for Valentine's on Friday though. We didn't take any pictures, but we dressed for the Arabian theme, and for the first time, I spent the evening with my head and face covered, letting only my heavily made-up darkened eyes peer out. I really enjoyed it. The party was private, at a huge house in Marin, full of years of nicknacks that made the place seem like a museum. 2 live music areas, a pool, lots of lounging, food and bar, and really fun folks. I have to say it was one of the most well-done parties I've been to. But that was the extent of going out.

Tonight, I put up Tesla's hinasama. I plan to take this year's pictures when the lighting is better, but here is one from last year. Tonight, the Regenbogens came over and we did mamemaki for sestubun even though it's weeks behind. I got Dav to play the devil we shooed out by throwing soy beans at him out the door, then we brought in good luck by throwing beans inside, eating our age in beans.

Amazing...

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So much to say, but the pictures say it all: Dav's Vox post.

Only a few days ago, Dav and I marveled together as we watched Tesla, "did we really create her?" She's such her own being.

Academy of Science

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Sweet Elida called Saturday morning to see if I had time to visit the new Academy of Science. I'd been avoiding it for the crowds and pricey ticket, but Elida is a member, so Tesla and I could go for free - which meant we could go for however long or short we wanted without feeling obligated to see all. Membership to museums is so nice that way. We have membership to MOMA so we can visit for half an hour during lunch without thought for cost, but of course we don't go as frequently as we'd like.

It was lovely...even though Tesla clearly started needing a nap later on. We saw a live alligator up close and various very well done mounted animals. I still feel weird admiring dead animals redone to look alive...

As a member, Elida can take us Sunday mornings when it's members only for an hour. That's when we plan to wander around the Rain Forest, roof and planetarium. Next time : ) Thanks, Elida!

Niki and Caleb visit

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Life is zooming by, so this is a bit late, but Niki and Caleb came to visit all the way from Humbolt last week. Niki is Belinda's daughter, a wonderful friend I worked with at the I.M.F. in Tokyo whom I see whenever I get the chance. I love Belinda, and Dav and I admire her and her husband James as our role models. I'm getting to be friends with Niki too; we met at BM, and I visited her in Santa Cruz years ago. Niki just got engaged to Caleb (yay!), and is planning on partnering with a woman to raise chickens as a business... as in organic happy chickens.

I've been particularly interested in following her since Dav and I are exploring options in buying land up north for more sustainable living. Niki is educated in this, and it's good to hear her perspective, such as how access to natural water is key (duh, but seriously...).

Niki and Caleb brought their little baby puppy Penny. Tesla has never seen such a small baby dog yet, but after an initial infatuation, she backed off from Penny's hyper puppy-ness. However, Katsuo came out, much to my surprise, to make sure Penny knew her place. First, my cats usually don't come out and greet strangers, let alone a dog! Second, if one of my cats were to make a fuss about something, I'd guess Wakame. But nope; Kats came out, glared, and gave a few swipes!

It was too quick of an evening...and I look forward to hanging more with Niki, Calab, and Penny : )

Make sure you see the picture of Penny completely crashed after so much excitement, not in a corner or on some comfy pillow, but right in the middle of where she was when she crashed. Soooooooooooo cute!

The joys of potty training...

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potty power.jpg No, really. Today, upon being told by Gran Marie, I clapped my hands, grinned with joy, gave Tesla a big hug and kiss (I was visiting home during lunch from work) and called Dav at work immediately with the amazing good news that Tesla pooped in the potty! Ok, maybe this isn't that interesting for everyone, but for us, this is big news! And she even washed her hands while singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, just as the Potty Power dvd teaches her.

She's peed several times in the potty, but poo is a much bigger deal. Interestingly, so far she has actually used the potty only when with Gran Marie or Karla. She sits when with us but no action. I suspect this is some control issue.

I unabashedly went for bribing...she gets one organic gummy bear if she sits on the potty for a while (while reading or drawing or whatever), and I have a string of cute chocolate bite-size squares dangling in the kitchen that we told she could have one if she used the potty. She's been fondling that string of chocolate...and voila, today she got to have one from Gran Marie.

"Prettyful"

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Tesla's language is growing leaps and bounds, and it is interesting to see how easily English comes to her, while Japanese definitely lags, understandably since she has much less input since it's just me. She definitely understands a lot, and uses the words that Dav uses too. But her Japanese is based on repetition and focused teaching, while she seems to breathe in English. I'm not worried; just fascinated in the difference, wondering if she even realizes mama uses "another" language.

Anyway, with English, she is starting the stage I've been looking forward to where she begins to expand her vocabulary using "rules" she has learned, but it just happens not to work all the time (highlights idiosyncrasies in the language). I plan to note as much as I can, but today was the first that inspired me to blog: she came up with her wooden doll and said, "prettyful."

Note the little potty in the background? We're working on it!