Friday, April 29, 2011

Dear Not-Yet-Made Soybeanito Letter #2

Dear Not-Yet-Made Soybeanito,

It's another Friday. I'm excited to watch another Star of the Week presentation. I see the kiddo, who I teach how to read and how to write, take center stage. She's beaming. She's over-the-moon excited that her parents are there as she shares her photos and tells about her favorite foods. Her parents are beaming. They're probably wondering, "How did such an amazing little person come from me?" 

As I'm watching the exchange of smiles, shared admiration and love, it is in this moment that I know that I want you more than anything else on this planet. Yes, I may have a travel box instead of a baby box. However, I want to feel that kind of happiness with you. I want your dad to feel that kind of indescribable happiness with you. We would have you sooner, but there were some practical logistics that we had to get sorted. Once you get to know your dad better, you'll get it. Once you get to know me better, you'll know that we had you at exactly the right time. 

Just know that we're waiting for you. 

Thursday, April 28, 2011

On Success!Andrew_Carnegie,_three-quarter_length_portrait,_seated,_facing_slightly_left,_1913.jpg

"There is little success where this little laughter." - Andrew Carnegie 

*Shoutout to Jan. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Catch Up: Snappy

We bought some red snapper at our market. My hubster asked the meat guys what was the best way to cook it. There was a sudden debate about the easy way and the fancy creamy way. Supposedly, you have to have a taste for creaminess and fish if you want to go the fancy route. We decided to go with the classic sauteed snapper with lots of olive oil and garlic. Cook it on high and do one flip is the trick. Midway through cooking we decided to making a lemon aioli sauce and turn our snapper into open face fish sandwiches. So delish!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy 226th Birthday, John James Audubon!
A few months ago, we watched a wonderfully intriguing documentary about John James Audubon called John James Audubon: Drawn from Nature.


Do you remember what it felt like to imagine what you would be when you grew up? It seemed so distant then. Between the moment your dream emerged until you became a grown-up seemed like enough time to accomplish all the goals in the world. 

I'm reading about what my kiddos want to be when the grow up. One little girl wants to be a doctor, so she can help sick people. One little girl wants to be a librarian. By the way, she has written the most book reviews in class. One little boy says, "When I grow up, I will be out searching for characters for my movies and sometimes be at my own house, in my office, and writing books." There's nothing more beautiful than a child's dream.

Just Listen

I used to think that God wouldn't talk to me because I didn't take time to read the bible. I just can't sit and read it. Then, I started to listen more carefully. As my mom says, "He will find a way to reach you." This is how he has found a way to talk to me:

Oprah's Master Class 

When Richard tells Liz in Eat Pray Love to "Stop trying and surrender." 

When I read a sign that says "You're braver than you believe. You're stronger than you know." 

When another sign says, "You can't change the wind but you can adjust your sails."

When my mentor tells me, "Just trust."

When the first rock that I see at my favorite garden store says, "Let it be."

When my daily quote book lands on this quote the day the big news was supposed to come, "Letting go means accepting life just as it is: elusive, free, spontaneous and without limits." 

Just in case I didn't get it, the next day says, "Learn to stop and you will learn stability, once stable, you will learn to rest, in rest, you will learn serenity, in serenity, you will learn to reflect, and through reflection you will succeed."

Apparently, God has to be very literal with me, which results in a good laugh for both of us.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

If You Celebrate Easter

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 22, 2011

3 Rs: Rum Cake, Rum Punch, and Rhianna - Part 4

This is our last and final installment of our Caribbean adventure. Thanks for hanging in with us. 

Day 12 San Juan:

On our day of disembarkation, we decided to stay and extra day in San Juan. For some reason, it was cheaper for us to fly out on Saturday instead of Friday. You didn't have to twist our arm to take advantage of an extra day of vacay. 

We spent most of our day roaming around Old San Juan, which is the more touristy part of San Juan. The buildings are in lovely condition. The pastel colors reminded me of jelly beans. My favorite part is the blue cobblestones. Cobblestones are already one of my favorite architecture features in old cities, but I had never seen blue ones before. It's like the ocean spilled over the cobblestone and stained them a gorgeous blue. 

While we were on the boat, I was reading about the highlights of Old San Juan. The highlights included the forts, colorful colonial buildings, and pigeons. As I read it, I thought, "Really? Pigeons? What's the big deal?" Well, there are tons of pigeons! We wandered into a square full of pigeons. Across from the pigeons was an enticing Italian restaurant filled with locals called Antonella's Pizzeria. It was an Advent Friday, so we had to opt for the veggie pizza options. The pizza was okay. The highlight? The garlic dough balls. So garlicky! So good! 

We decided to go to try going back to the fort and walk along the perimeter. Big mistake at high noon. There isn't any shade. San Juan is extra humid as well. We walked a few feet then turned back around. We did some more shopping. We got some coffee and I got a Panama hat. Soon enough, I couldn't resist the small ice cream carts. I just had to have some passion fruit ice cream. It was refreshing and not overly sweet. 

We didn't have any luck finding the right bus stop to go home. The streets didn't look so shady instead they looked like the streets of Costa Rica, so we decided to walk home. It was a low-key adventure. A lovely way to end our vacation.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Hubster Will Begin Eye Rolling in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1


(via emancipatio)

3 Rs: Rum Cake, Rum Punch, and Rhianna - Part 3

Day 7 Grenada:

For Gre-nayd-uh, we swapped our jet ski excursion for a waterfall hike. We got lucky with our guides. They were both very knowledgeable about all the plants (native/non-native) on the island. Our main tour guide made sure that we got to stop and take lots of pictures on our way to the waterfall and on our way back to the boat. He was uber patient with my lack of good footing on our trip. I'm a bit of klutz. I tend to trip over even tiny bumps in the sidewalk. 

The ticket said to beware that it would be very muddy. How muddy was it? Well, our tour guides switched out of their tennies to wellies. It was slippery muddy, which made it a challenging hike for a klutz like me. Before we began our hike, we saw what fresh nutmeg looks like just plucked from a tree and got to sample fresh cinnamon and cacao seeds. Yum! Once we got to the waterfall, I was hesitant to go swimming but after some convincing from the guide I hopped into the chilly pool. I'm happy I went swimming with the hubster. 

Day 9 Curacao:

I had been so looking forward to the photographing the colorful buildings along the waterfront. There are many legends to why the buildings are different colors. One of my favorites is that a mayor couldn't deal with the blinding white buildings in the sun because they gave him migraines. He required the buildings be painted. On the ship, I read about the floating market. The travel guide said that it was the perfect setting for a photographer. 

Again, we took a break from our adventures and just wanted to roam around the town. It was a bit of a walk from our dock. I must admit that the kitsch in Curacao was a lot prettier than the kitsch we had seen on the other islands. I'm still thinking about an adorable beaded necklace. 

Once we made it across the moving bridge and into town, we went looking for the floating market. To my disappointment, it's nothing like the floating markets in Asia. We snapped a few photos. The locals were very patient with us. We wandered around, weaving through the streets. We found the oldest Jewish temple in the western hemisphere, but it cost $10 for each of us to go in. I'm not big on having to pay to go into places of worship. I love donating money, but I don't like paying the admission. For our local treat of the day, my hubster found a cheese filled puff pastry for me. He know me too well.

After wandering around, we headed back to the ship to enjoy its amenities.

Day 9 Aruba:

 Originally, we had planned to not doing on Aruba. Then, I realized that we hadn't gone snorkeling. Scandalous! My hubster thought we would just save snorkeling for our next Hawaii trip. That wasn't about to happen. We asked our waitress which beach she would recommend. The beach would have cost $40 with everything included for each of us. Then, it would cost about $20 for a taxi ride. 

The cruise ship had a special to go to De Palm Island. On the island, there's snorkeling, banana boat riding, swimming in the mini beaches, playing in the water park, eating at the buffet, and drinking at the open bar. All of this cost $70, which also included transportation. It was a little hokey. We did love snorkeling. Our favorite fish was the blue parrot fish and the trumpet fish. They would swim under us and snack on the coral around us. We could hear the blue parrot fish munching. The buffet was delicious. We got to try a yummy local hot sauce. All in all, it was worth the visit because it was totally hassle free.