Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Summer afternoon


Nice day to enjoy the sunshine and ocean breeze.

Josh on the rocks

High Tide

Nice day to be out with friends.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Getty Villa

Another field trip for us and I think I fell in love with the the Getty Villa. Stunning location, beautiful antiquities and architecture. Today we had the perfect weather to experience the museum, inside and out.

Just the perfect size to lose oneself there and just enjoy all that there is to see. If you ever have the chance to go, do it and get the free self-guided audio iPod touch.

Welcome to the Getty Villa
Kids are raring to go.
Peekaboo ocean view
View of the ocean.
trippy tile floor
Details everywhere...from the floor
Greek columns
to the ceilings.
Greek hero Herakles
Hercules with his club and lion skin
Reflecting pool
Immaculate gardens.
Reclining sculpture
So much to see...
Hands on Venus
and touch (don't worry). We were allowed to touch it.

Life imitating art
The kids had a grand time. They each got to be part of the artwork.
Life imitating art 2
Life imitating art 4
Joshua battling a warrior.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

socks and blanket

I haven't knit nearly as much as I like the last couple of weeks but picked it up again this week. I found a pair of Blender socks that I started a while back and thought I'd start with some mindless stockinette.

I finished the heels yesterday and suddenly decided to make them into short socks. That just makes them done that much faster...

Short pair of Blender socks

Shortie Blender socks

Really toasty and warm. I could feel my feet heating up as I wore them a few minutes. One can never have too many socks, right?

My apple core blanket is coming along nicely. I'm not sure how big I want to make this but I want it as a baby blanket. I need to decide if it'll be a proper baby blanket (for a crib) or a snuggly kind of wubby baby blanket that a baby can use to soothe themselves. Either way I hope it will get lots of use. Even though I'm using sock yarn leftovers, the blanket is warm and light. I might have to consider making myself one someday which will take lots of leftovers.

Apple core blanket

Apple Core blanket: progress

No timeline on the blanket since I don't anyone having a baby but maybe one of my cousins will be expecting in the next year or two so it will be ready for them.

By the way: my chile rojo experiment was called successful by Hector last night. I'll have to try it again next time and see if I get the same results.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Scientific Approach

The following is not a recipe for Chile Rojo. It is a scientific experiment in making the perfect chile rojo. I've been married for 15 years and during this time I've learned to make some awesome chile rojo. I've even gotten the approval of my husband's family which is high accolades.

Recently, my SIL Lupe and I were discussing chile verde and how she has found the right ratio of certain # of chilis to x # of tomatoes. With red chile it becomes harder since chiles come in all sizes and for the purpose of this experiment I used pujos (sp?) only and tomatillos.
Red chiles ready for roasting
Again this is not a recipe although it is very simple to make. Chiles, tomatillos, salt & garlic. That's it. You can use it for tacos, buritos whatever you want or my hubby's favorite with pork.

First, I roast the chiles...low to medium since I don't want to smoke myself out into a coughing fit with burning chiles/seeds. My Chinese nature comes out and I use chopsticks to turn the chiles over which comes in very handy.
Roasting red chiles on the comal

After all the chiles are roasted, I break them in half and take out the seeds (as much as I can) since they cause the heat & I can't take that much. There. If you want to keep the heat, by all means grind them up with your chile.
Chiles destemmed and seeded
For science, I weighed the chiles + paper plate after they are seeded on my digital scale. 23 grams (plate) +  72 grams chiles (de-stemmed/ seeded) = 95 grams total. For the intuituve part, I eyeballed it to a full plate of chiles.
tomatillos in blender

Grind up the tomatillos...I use canned (28 oz)  because 1) it's easier and 2) consistent flavor. Throw the whole contents of the can in the blender. I start adding the red chiles into the blender. At first, I throw in 5 or so in the blender and keep adding thru the little hatch while it's still blending. Lots of blending...

red chiles in blender
right color for chile rojo
You're aiming for the right color and consistency. Lupe had the right color but wrong consistency. You want the chile to stick to the spoon. It turns out that my eyeball guess was dead on. I added all those chiles to get this color and consistency. Now to add it to the fried pork with some water and let it simmer for 2 hours to get back to the almost the original consistency. right consistency for chile rojo clings to spoon

And that's it, I hope that takes the mystery of making the perfect chile a bit easier. I can't totally vouch for this scientifc method since this is the first time I tried it this way but I had a lot of fun adding in the scientific element to cooking. It'll be interesting to see what Hector will rate this later tonight. :)

Monday, July 23, 2012

Geeking out

We were invited to have dinner at my SIL's place this Saturday while Lita was checked out of memory care to have her haircut and a day out. After the tragic shootings in Colorado, I thought it would be good to spend time with our loved ones since we really have no idea when they will be gone. The boys are kind of young to process our thinking although they were great and didn't whine/complain like they can do and we all had a really great time.

We brought kalbi and kimchi (3 kinds) to enjoy along with some fresh strawberry/berry shortcake. Lita was doing well considering and it was great to see her eat something. I think that all the adults just took in the special time and enjoyed in for its simplicity.

Part of the time was spent researching these awesome cameras that were saved while cleaning out Lita's place. I sorta geeked out and my eyes glazed over!! New gadgets!! Well, actually vintage gadgets but still! These babies use 35mm film so once they are up and running, I will try some film out and see what they produce. Looking up the cameras on Flickr and seeing what people can shoot with these cameras is pretty cool and inspiring. Going old skool....

Miranda RE-II

Yashica FRII

These 2 cameras are SLRs and look to be in good shape. I have to order the batteries for them and give them a good cleaning ...

Minolta Hi-matic 11 rangefinder

This one is rangefinder which I've read about but never fully understood the mechanics. These were the cameras before the SLRs came out (I think) so I really hope this one works so I can try it out... Hector was able to shed some light on these and explain them better to me so I'm excited.

If anything, they will look great in a display case if I can't get them working or when I'm not using them. See, I'm still geeking out...

big grin

Crummy lips

Throwing in some pics of the kids....they are doing well this summer. Planning a trip to the Getty Villa later this week so something to look forward to!!

Friday, July 20, 2012


With digital cameras being so popular and relatively affordable for any budget, each member of our family has a digital camera. Hector has a weatherproof Olympus that is very useful in water, beach and snow situations so that is the one I'm focussing on today. He has a large memory card so there are tons of pictures going back a couple of years.

I took his camera with us to San Diego because we were planning on going to the Legoland water park. Unfortunately, it was overcast with some sprinkles so I never took it into the water but I did manage a few pics of the kids in the lazy river. Hopefully the weather will be much warmer next time we go.

Lazy river at Legoland

relaxing in the lazy river

They made some new friends so hung out with them on the lazy river...

Say cheese!

One out of  two looking at the camera is pretty normal.

cruising the lazy river

Even with his wetsuit on, Josh didn't last very long in the chilly water. Then yesterday when he swam in Grandma's pool in the 80* heat Josh played & swam in the water for 2 hours. That's a record! :)

Also on the camera is the parasailing outing that Hector did with Sherri. It was bright and early on a Sunday morning at 7:30am.

Hector and Sherri

Smiley face sail Hector and Sherri parasailing

The parasailing company has a cute happy face sail...and there they are airborne with Sherri being more airborne!! :)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


No rain here but definitely cooler weather. The kids are being amazingly cooperative with me and each other which is always a nice event. They are replaying the last season of Ninjago so they have been enjoying those episodes and made sure the todays premiere will be recorded while they are at kenpo.

They wanted to watch Ninjago on the big TV so I came up to give them their space and thought I should work on those arboretum photos.

It was cooler than normal in Santa Anita but much warmer than we are used to so at 76* in the full sun had us hot in no time. Seriously, it probably is around 85* typically and we are plodding along at 76. Ugh, I tried to tell them it'll be warmer, much warmer in Honolulu next month when the kiddos and I take off for some R & R. At least the pool water will be at a comfortable level for Josh who doesn't tolerate cool water the same way Ty does. It's always such a lopsided  day...poor Josh is done at x amount of time and is shivering with cold while Tyler could last twice as long, maybe more. One kid wants to go inside for hot chocolate and the other wants to keep swimming. Tyler is the one who has to cave in mostly so he seems to get the short end of the stick. I'm looking for that to change in HI so I'm sure they will wilt in the heat and want to stay in A/C all day. Ha, not on my watch! :)

Okay so here are the photos....

ready to explore palm trees by the lake giant and little Kids

I'd love to come back again and really explore this place.

in front of bamboo Bamboo forest

Seeking nectar
The kids helped spot a couple of hummingbirds so I did my best taking some shots then zooming in and cropping later on.

Waterfall pose

It was a fun outing although we are such heat wimps. We must work on that!!


Today it might rain in SoCal. Took me by surprise when I saw the weather forecast. At least we managed our outing to the LA County Arboretum on Tuesday which was free admission on 3rd Tuesday of the month. I thought I had been here when I was younger but nothing looked familiar so it was probably some other place...

I will upload those photos tomorrow...

But for now here is the segment; Joshua's Unusual Word of the Day.


Wiki definition. He used the word in playing with their Sonic plushie etc so go figure.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012


My one blog reader mentioned I haven't blogged in a while...I do have more than one reader (I'm pretty sure) but this particular one gives me instant feedback since I'm married to him. :) So I tartly replied, "Oh? So my audience is clamoring for more cheesey goodness?"  He said it wasn't clamoring  with which I will leave the following:

clam·or (klmr)
1. A loud outcry; a hubbub.
2. A vehement expression of discontent or protest: a clamor in the press for pollution control.
3. A loud sustained noise. See Synonyms at noise.

v. clam·ored, clam·or·ing, clam·ors

1. To make a loud sustained noise or outcry.
2. To make insistent demands or complaints: clamored for tax reforms.

1. To exclaim insistently and noisily: The representatives clamored their disapproval.
2. To influence or force by clamoring: clamored the mayor into resigning.
So I exaggerated a bit...in my mind it was a loud outcry and hubbub. :)
Last Thursday, we headed down to San Diego/Carlsbad because Hector got us tickets to see the Legend of Zelda symphony but we failed to realize that it was during Comic-Con 2012. Hotel prices were very high and traffic in the area was bad but we managed. Got a hotel in Carlsbad, took the trolley to the convention center and had lots of fun watching the activity.
Hampton Inn room

Adventure Time Sonic the hedgehog & Josh Sonic and Tyler

Comic-con was pretty crazy and we were not even attending!! There are lots of things to experience outside of the venue. We came upon the SEGA sign and found Sonic the Hedgehog. Then the kids went inside and got to try out a new Sonic game on the PS3. They were in heaven! It was super dark in there but there was also the original Alien prop on display and it was large.

Onward we go, tagging people as we walk along the Convention Center, around and behind it to get to the marina. Our goal was to tag 100 people and with the Legend of Zelda concert & Comic-con, we achieved that all in about 3hours.

Marina behind the convention center Marina Streetpass time

This is where we sat and got a lot of our tags. There is a group of SD 3DS people that gather and get tagged with each other. It's kind of fun as you collect puzzle pieces to make 3D panels, try to collect hats for your Mii and see what countries and states you get. Joshua seems to tag people in Canada even though I sat right next to him, I didn't get those people. We have tags from Japan, Argentina and Anguilla.

Joshua was so funny and didn't want to budge from his seat. He was exclaiming that this was TOO EASY and when I said this was crazy, he replied yeah, CRAZY AWESOME! This was the highlight of the day, getting all those tags at one place. The concert was really great too. We thought since it combined the videogame soundtrack to the symphony, it would be a good introduction for the kids. There was a Zelda costume contest and raffle too. Hector came down on his motorcycle after work to meet with us but had to ride home to work the next day.

The kids and I stayed in Carlsbad and went to Legoland water park on Friday and the Legoland park on Saturday. The weather was really strange, humid and occasional rain so Josh got cold right away at the water park. I thought that July would warm up a bit but we have to try again another time.

DSCF0497.jpg DSCF0500.jpg DSCF0502.jpg DSCF0507.jpg

A nice little trip with the kids and now they want to go to Comic-con!! :)