Monday, September 25, 2017

Breakfast in Waikiki

Curtis had an appointment with Harold, his financial advisor, this morning; he invited me to go along with him. Because he was going to be in town we decided to go to breakfast this morning rather than our usual Tuesday morning. We invited Ron again, he suggested a little place in Waikiki. We checked out Tilia Exquisite Aloha Cafe; it was closed for maintenance today, we'll have to try it some other day.


We went to Plan B; IHOP, it's right across the street. Although its not yet October, IHOP already has there Halloween menu out.


Curtis had the Breakfast Sampler, Ron had the Spinach & Mushroom Omelette, and I had the Red Velvet Pancakes.
Breakfast Sampler. (photo by Curtis)
Spinach & Mushroom Omelette. (photo by Ron)
Red Velvet Pancakes.

The topping on the Red Velvet Pancakes were so sweet I had to eat something else with them to cut the sweetness. I opted for hash browns & ketchup. I think I'll be sticking to my normal IHOP order, Harvest Grain 'n' Nut Pancakes.
L to R: Red Velvet Pancakes, hash browns & ketchup.

On Saturday night I made whole wheat dinner rolls to take to Curtis & Lori's for dinner on Sunday; I stayed up till about 1 a.m. Dinner was in honor of Ron's visit, but also for Brent & Lori's birthdays; Brent's is on Wednesday and Lori's is next week. We won't be able to celebrate this coming weekend since they will be on a trip so we did it Saturday night.
Clockwise spiral from lower left: broccoli salad, romaine salad, noodles, whole wheat dinner rolls, pasta salad, half filled dinner plate, salad dressing, Mongolian beef, & eggplant dish. Not shown: pot roast.
L to R: stained glass jello, date bars, & cookies from Liliha Bakery.

On my Sunday morning walk I found that someone donated a lot of books to the Little Free Library. Unfortunately the books will likely get ruined by the morning dew and intermittent sprinkles that we have been having.


I also saw that the mock orange "tree" was in bloom! I love the fragrance; I'm trying to train the shrub in front of the house to a "tree" form so that we can enjoy the fragrance right at the house.


Happy Birthday to Lynda, Naomi, Lopaka, & Roxanne! Happy 13th Anniversary to Rachel & Terrence!

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Museum Day Live!

The Smithsonian Magazine hosts Museum Day Live! every year in September. Across the country participating museums & cultural institutions provide free entry to people presenting a Museum Day Live! ticket. Ron & I went to Iolani Palace which was one of the participating places. We found that we should have arrived earlier, apparently there were a whole line of people waiting before they even opened! But we got lucky, we were able to snag 2 tickets for the 2:10 pm tour. In the meanwhile, we (& other people who could not get in) were allowed to tour the basement.
Ron with photo of Iolani Palace, c. 1890.

While we waited for our entry time, we went to Liliha Bakery for lunch. Ron remembered having lunch here with Mom back in December but he couldn't remember the name. It was so busy when we got there we spent time looking through the bakery; I think they set it up that way on purpose. I saw a bunch of cool cookies to take to Curtis & Lori's tomorrow night for dessert.
This is the one on Nimitz, not the original one.
I got each of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, plus R2-D2, an Angry Bird, an Emoji, a butterfly, teddy bear, and kokeshi doll cookie.

Ron had a craving for a burger and I had the Grilled Mahimahi Sandwich. My mahi sandwich looked really large when it arrive but my morning walk plus walking around the palace basement made me hungry; I finished all of it!

Deluxe Burger.
Grilled Mahimahi Sandwich; it was a real piece of fish, not a breaded square fish.

We had enough time after lunch to go to Home Depot for Ron to pick up more paint to finish off the touch up on one of the walls for his friend's condo that he is staying at. Phyllis got the original paint from Home Depot, so Ron took the cover from the old paint can back to get a match on the color so he could complete the wall.


While there I noticed their Halloween items that were across the aisle from the paint place. I can understand the T. rex & human skeletons for Halloween but not the horse skeleton. And the skull of the horse is wrong, it shouldn't have a bony nose and the dentition is wrong.

The number of people allowed in to Iolani Palace is controlled so that each visitor can have an iPod for the audio-tour & enough space to move around & see everything. Since the palace is over 100 years old we had to wear booties to protect the flooring and carpets; food & drinks are not allowed in the building either. The tour started in the entry to the palace at the foot of the staircase, at location #2 on the iPod.
Very fashionable!
The iPod platform was much nicer than the old cassette-type audio-tours; it had about 6 language options including Hawaiian!
The electric lights were in the original palace. Hawai'i was a leader in having electricity in the residence of the monarchy; the palace had electric lights before the White House and Buckingham Palace!

Here is a portrait of Queen Liliuokalani, the last reigning Hawaiian monarch. She was overthrown by American businessmen with the help of U. S. Marines.


If you have ever watched the original Hawaii Five-O, you have seen the outside of Iolani Palace; its where Steve McGarrett's office was located. And for a while the palace was used for government offices up until 1968 so its plausible that his office would be there. The only problem is that the location as seen from the outside of the building is actually a small corner room off the main room; its about 10' x 10' and entered through a narrow, diagonal hallway.
Looking in to the room in the corner.

Ron walks for 2 hours in the morning and frequently walks around Diamond Head. This morning he walked over to the house after going around Leahi. Dad got up to eat breakfast and was sitting in the family room when Ron arrived. Yesterday when I told Dad that Ron was coming over, he said he didn't know who he was, but then he remembered that Ron bought his Bronco, although he said he could not remember what he looked like. But as soon as Ron walked in he knew who he was. At this phase of his dementia he can still remember someone when he sees their face but he can't come up with their face if you just give him a name.

On my morning walk I went around the playfield 3 times for a total of 1.38 miles; it took me about 28 minutes. But I don't think I'm going to do that again; the grass and dirt were wet and I ended up with a bunch of the Kaimuki red dirt splattered on my calves & my shoes. Because of the iron oxide it stains. I'll be trying a different route tomorrow so I'm glad I took the photo of Leahi today.
Leahi #35 from Kapaolono.

This morning one of the papaya flowers opened up. I think it might be a hermaphrodite; it has anthers but is attached to the trunk and not on a long stalk.


Happy Birthday to Bennie, Bruce, Mike, Christopher, & Kito!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Papers, Papers, & More Papers!

We went to see Rowen today; he's the attorney that put together Mom & Dad's trusts. Dad does not want to be the Trustee of their trusts because he does not want to leave the house; he is becoming more reclusive & he's having trouble dealing with the dementia. Rowen put together the paperwork to remove Dad as Trustee & have me be the first Trustee; Curtis & David will be the successor Trustees. I will also have Power of Attorney for financial & medical decisions for Dad (Curtis & David will be successors). Dad signed 32 times for the legal papers & 12 times for the notary book; I had to sign 10 times on the legal papers & 3 times in the notary book.
Papers, papers, & more papers!

I forgot to mention that Lori got me another suitcase, the large version of the cat suitcase! On Wednesday, when we stopped by the house after breakfast Curtis gave it to me. Apparently Lori reads the blog & saw that I liked the cat suitcase but said it was a size smaller than my usual suitcase. So even though I was using it (because I liked it even though it was smaller) she was on the search for the larger size; she also had Anita helping her. Anita found it & picked it up for her. So now I have 2 cat suitcases! Many thanks to Lori & Anita!


One of the papaya flowers is starting to bloom. I think it might be a hermaphrodite; the tip is rounded not pointy. At least 2 of the plants have flowers like this. The last plant has not formed any flowers yet, I am thinking it might be a male plant.


Happy Hobbit Day!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Big Day at the Vet

Xander & Chibi went to the Cat Clinic today. Xander was there for his blood glucose test & Chibi was there for her geriatric check-up. Chibi has Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV); its the cat version of HIV in humans. FIV in cats is not as destructive as HIV in humans; she's had it for as long as we have had her so about 10 years. Dr. Dean said she looks good; the blood tests come back tomorrow so we will find out more about her organ functions. For the near future we need to keep an eye on her teeth & gums.
L to R: Vet Tech Mariko, Chibi, & Dr. Dean.
Dr. Dean checking Chibi's heart rate with her Hello Kitty watch! Everyone at Cat Clinic loves cats!

Xander is currently on 5 units of insulin twice a day & 1 prednisolone tablet once a day. I just reduced his prednisolone on Saturday from 1&1/2 tablets to 1 tablet a day. During his tests today his blood glucose level went down. And although it was lower than it had been previously, it is still not down in the non-diabetes levels. But Dr. Dean did not want to increase the amount of insulin he is taking; she thinks the prednisolone is affecting his blood sugar level. She wants to continue at this level until we reach the next step down in his prednisolone level, which will be in about a month. They'll test his blood glucose again after he has been on the lower level of prednisolone for about a week. Xander is on the prednisolone due to pancreatitis; as the level of prednisolone is decreased it is hoped that his blood sugar level will go down to normal & stabilize.

Happy Birthday to Joan, Terri, Pramila, & Aaron!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Breakfast with Ron

I picked Ron up about 6:30 & we headed over to Curtis' house for breakfast. But not before running in to a traffic jam which is unusual when I am heading west at that time of the day. There was a fender bender near the overpass.
Traffic jams in both directions!

Curtis wanted to take Ron to Rocky's Coffee Shop for breakfast. It's an old-fashioned style place with a down-home feel. Plus the coffee & refills are included as part of the meal! It has also got some neat artwork on the walls.


Ron had the Rocky's Special Omelet with hash browns. Curtis had the Vienna Sausage Breakfast. And I had the Rocky's Special Omelet with toast.
Ron's breakfast.
Curtis' breakfast.
My breakfast.

After breakfast we went to Sam's Club; Ron wanted to buy a bunch of toilet paper for the friend's condo in Waikiki where he is staying; he also got some tissues, orange juice, & beer. Curtis and I also had a few things to pick up; I got more Nutter Butters for Dad, more dishwashing soap, & pistachios. 


Curtis & Lori's contractors are still waiting for the permit for the extension so that they can get a necessary inspection before they continue. This is the first I've seen it since they went on hold. All the underground pipes have been installed; I think they are waiting for those to be inspected before they can cover them.



On the way back, Ron & I  stopped by the Marukai Market at the Ward Farmers Market; it will be closing at the end of the month. It's one of Bick's favorite places. But what was left was disappointing; all we got was a little bento for Dad.


I helped Ron get his Sam's Club purchases up to the condo. I also go to check it out; it's got hurricane shutters on the balcony to protect the windows on that side of the unit. It also has a view of the Ala Wai Canal; in fact, the area where the canoe clubs store their canoes is easily visible from the balcony. If Ron & Bick purchase the condo they will be able to watch the teams as they practice.
Looking mauka towards the Ala Wai Canal.

As I have mentioned frequently, I am battling ants in the house. (I leave them alone outside because they have a place in the environment.) Inside I have been using Terro Liquid Ant Bait, the active ingredient is borax. Apparently it kills them by interfering with their digestion. In the meanwhile, I have a bunch of dead ants in the shower every night.


Happy Birthday to Jun, Dale, & Steve! Happy 19th Anniversary to Rebecca!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Dad Goes to the Dentist

I was able to get Dad to go to the dentist this afternoon. Earlier in the year I was supposed to take him and Mom to the dentist; Dad refused to go. I took Mom, but found out that dental cleaning is contraindicated when you have a compromised immune system! Today I also went to the dentist; its been about 19 months since I've been to the dentist. We both had good check-ups but Dr. Loo gave me a referral to the periodontist to review the previous recommendations that I had gotten earlier about gum surgery & bone grafts.


This morning as I was running around doing errands, I was stopped at the Kapiolani Avenue & Date Street intersection. I saw a bunch of guys dressed in white across the intersection running in the street along side the parked cars pushing a big something. When they turned the corner I realized it was scaffolding that they were pushing & figured they must be painters. As I drove past the building it was pretty apparent that they had been painting it.
The painters getting the scaffolding back on the sidewalk after running it down Kapiolani Boulevard.

Ron came in yesterday; we got together this evening for dinner. He wanted to take Dad out to dinner but Dad just wanted to go to sleep; he couldn't remember who Ron was. So Ron picked up food at Siam Square for dinner. He got pineapple fried rice, lemongrass chicken, & Thai style fried marinated chicken. It was a great dinner, but I forgot to take photos.

We talked about the Biki bikes that are all around Waikiki as well as a few other places. It looks like they are very popular. The one on Kapiolani at McCully was completely empty the other day. Today there were only 2 bikes there.
Biki station at Kapiolani & McCully.

On my morning walk I made a full lap around the playfield at Kapaolono. The route was 1.13 miles & took 23 minutes. Comparing it to yesterday's statistics, the lap around the playfield appears to be 0.25 miles and took about 6 minutes. It looks like if I add another lap around the playfield it will get me close to 30 minutes, which is what I am aiming for; I'll try it on Thursday morning. (We'll be going out to breakfast tomorrow with Ron so there won't be enough time for me to walk before breakfast.)

Happy Birthday to Renee & Aaron!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Wheels for Wildlife

As I was cleaning up this morning I got a text from Sam, the wildlife rehabilitation manager at the Hawai'i Wildlife Center. They needed a Wheels for Wildlife volunteer to transport a Bulwer's Petrel, aka 'ou, to the airport. The timing was perfect, I grabbed a snack & coconut water & took off for Feather & Fur Animal Hospital to pick up the bird. Then it was off to the ag inspection office at the airport & Hawaiian Air Cargo. I was back home just in time to get Dad's lunch started. I hope the 'ou gets better, it was not too perky when I dropped it off at the cargo hangar.
Here's the Bulwer's petrel (Bulweria bulwerii), it is apparently a male.
My snack to keep fueled up for wildlife transporting.

Tomorrow Sam, the wildlife rehab manager at HWC, moves to Idaho. Her boyfriend has a job there; she will be doing contract wildlife rehab work. But she will be back in November for the O'ahu Seabird Aid (OSA) Program; she will be staying here with Dad & me. Safe travels, Sam!

Recently my morning walk has been going around Kapaolono Park. Today I took a slightly different route and walked along the edge of the play field. It is about 0.02 mile & 30 seconds shorter than going around the outside on the sidewalk. I'm trying to increase my time to 30 minutes, tomorrow I'll do a lap around the playfield to see how long it takes, then calculate how many laps I need to do to get up to 30 minutes. I think it will be a lot easier walking at the park than trying to find a walking route through the neighborhood. It also has a shelter and a bathroom.

Happy Birthday to Aurolyn!

Sunday, September 17, 2017

What's Wrong With This Picture?

I was reading the paper this morning and came across this. It's an advertisement for the Hawai'i Seniors' Fair: The Good Life Expo; it's coming up this weekend. I included the dime in the photo for scale; notice the size of the font. For general accessibility, font size should be no smaller than 12 point; if your audience is seniors, the font size should be larger. The list of exhibitors was probably 6 point font, about the size of the date on the dime! About the only thing that was easily readable was "MARK YOUR CALENDAR".

This morning I tried the Ripple pea milk; it tastes sort of like soy milk but its a little bit sweeter. It's got 8 g of protein per 8 ounces, the same as whole cow's milk. Soy milk has 7 g, almond milk only has 2 g. So I guess my options are either soy milk or pea milk for my morning pre-walk protein drink.

Today I picked up a bottle of Mooala Bananamilk from Kokua; I am hoping Dad likes it so we can get more potassium into his diet, its got 3,500 mg of potassium per 8 ounces. By comparison whole cow's milk has 400 mg, Ripple pea milk has 540 mg, and soy milk has about 350 mg. I was also hoping that I could also use it as my morning protein source but it has only 2 g protein.

I have no idea why its called Mooala or why its logo is a koala with Holstein markings. Its not from Australia, its from Texas. The bottle doesn't give a hint either.

I picked some oranges after my morning walk. The tree is loaded; on Wednesday I will be taking some of them to Curtis' house. And also giving some to Ron who will be arriving here tomorrow. He'll be joining us for breakfast on Wednesday. There are more oranges on the other side of the tree but its difficult to take a good photo from that side. The regular watering has greatly increased the productivity of the tree. After it is done fruiting I need to do a little pruning.


I checked the strawberries this morning. They are struggling with the heat; its been about mid to upper 80's for the past few weeks. I know they're getting regular watering since I have them on a drip irrigation system on a timer, so its the heat that's affecting them.


We're having a problem with ants again. I think they're coming in for water and while they're here they look for any food. And there are a bunch that are coming out from under the shower pan in the guest bathroom. I've put out Terro Ant Baits to get rid of them. But like other bait-type things, you first have to attract the critter to the bait in order to deliver the lethal element. In this case the lethal component is borax. The foraging ants will take the borax-laced liquid back to the nest and spread it throughout the colony by feeding it to them. (That's what ants do.)
The bunch of ants to the left are at the entrance to a colony under the guest bathroom shower pan.

Happy Birthday to Jim!