Saturday, July 31, 2010

The Black Pearl

Currently the big news on the island is the filming of the 4th Pirates of the Caribbean movie...yep, the 4th one. I've never seen any of them as I've mentioned and I actually thought this was the 3rd one being filmed. Anyway, they are filming for the next 3 weeks in Kaneohe Bay and the pirate ship is right out in the harbor. Eve and I are pretty psyched about it, because we just like seeing TV and movie sets it seems. Here's a cool picture we took Thursday afternoon from the state park above the bay. They are filming at night so we may go back over one evening to check that out and to meet Johnny Depp, of course.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Thirty One Gifts

My sister-in-law has a new business that she's started doing in addition to teaching 1st grade full time and being a great wife to my baby brother. I'm shamelessly plugging her business on here because I'm so proud of her! Here's the link to her website.

If you are in the NC area and would like to host a party for her, you can get tons of free stuff! If you prefer to pay for your items, then you can order directly as well. They have everything from super cute purses, totes, baby items, backpacks, etc! Christmas is soon and this stuff makes excellent gifts, hence the name. Thanks for checking it out!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Summer Fun Parent Style

There is usually a week right after school ends and a week before it begins that all summer programs cease. I don't know what they think working parents are going to do, but it's kind of a pain. CRH and I are lucky enough that we have flexible jobs/schedules and have been able to work it out amongst ourselves who would be off on what days/times. My friend, Khristy, has also helped a lot too! Well I think after today, Eve will officially say Summer Fun Hart Style beats the pants off Parks & Rec.
This afternoon, CRH took Eve jet skiing while I was at work. For whatever reason, probably her fear of the water which is subsiding, she has refused to do this. He loves to jet ski and finally talked her into it. They had a blast! She was vibrating as she was telling me about it over dinner.

Tonight, we did the hand off so he could work the night shift and I took her to see The Black Pearl pirate ship which is currently in Kaneohe Bay while they are filming Pirates of the Caribbean 3, or whatever the official name is. I've never watched any of those movies, but obviously I'll catch this one so I can look at the scenery and play my favorite 'guess where that was filmed' game. They were filming I think tonight, so the road was a mad house...but of course I stopped to snap a quick pic. We're going back tomorrow with the good camera.

The evening concluded with Eve and I going to see "Ha". This is the new (ish) Polynesian Cultural Center's night show and it was pretty awesome. Eve and I both agreed we liked it more than the previous one, but we also saw the previous one about 6 maybe we just liked seeing something new. At any rate, she had a super fun day.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


The universe smiled at me today and then smacked me in the ass. It's the way of it these days. ;) I went to my favorite beach and as I was walking down the path, I noticed a new sign up. This sign was obviously put up because the turtle volunteers are too busy down at the actual "turtle beach" to patrol this one too, but it concerns me. Does this mean the tourists are catching wind of my Zen spot??

I decided today was the perfect day to walk on the beach because it was a little overcast so the sand wasn't blazing hot and frankly I needed some exercise. I've gained about 4 lbs back this summer due to poor eating and no exercise! I always look right first at this beach because this is where the turtles are the most apt to come up onto the sand, but there were none today. So, I went left thinking I would walk down and pick up some shells. As I started walking, I saw 5 turtles in the water eating. I walked a little further and saw about 10 more also hanging out near some rocks and eating. I climbed onto the rocks and was trying to get a picture with my phone of the awesome creature, when I slipped on the very green matter they eat and smacked my bottom HARD onto the rock. I'm pretty sure there's a huge bruise coming up because this was over 6 hours ago and it still smarts big time. As I tried to recover from this very ungraceful move, which almost landed me in the ocean with my phone on top of the said turtle I was trying to photograph, I walked along the not slippery part of the rocks and just kept seeing more and more turtles. It was amazing. I walked a good mile or further on the beach and I just kept seeing huge groups of them. I even saw two babies!! I knew my count was over 45, but in the interest of not exaggerating, I counted again on the way back and my total was 46. I have never, ever seen that many sea turtles in one day...ever. It was so cool! My sore bottom is totally worth the coolness of it all. Almost all of the turtles were in the water, but this guy was hauling out as I was heading back today.

After my turtle fest, I went to pick Eve up from my friend, Khristy and took her to hula. She's learning a new song right now in class. I love her new teacher because she really teaches them a lot with regards to the words of the song and the cultural component. She's a really great teacher! And speaking of teachers, my baby starts 2nd grade on Monday!!! I can't stand how fast time is flying!!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Honeygirl and Pup

Well sure enough there was a monk seal (Honey Girl) and her baby at Turtle Bay today! The baby was born on June 29th, 2010 in the very bay area where they are hanging out. It seems monk seals give birth and then they hang out with their baby for about 2 months. They nurse and play with it, and then they are finished. I mean after about 8 weeks they get into the water and swim off and the two never so much as acknowledge each other again as far as the humans can tell, even if they come up on the same beach one day.
The baby is the cutest thing! I went to scope him out this morning and then after picking up my car finally, I took Eve and CRH back to check it out. He was about 30lbs when he was born, but they gain 5lbs a day and so he's at about 100-150lbs now. An interesting side note is that while the mama seals nurse, they don't eat at all so they lose that baby weight super fast! I got some great pics with my good camera, but our computer still has a virus so I can't upload them yet. Here's a horrible one I took with my camera phone. The "rocks" are seals...really, I promise.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The 2 1/2 Year Vacation

Well guys I fear my two and a half year vacation is about to end. Tuesday I went to UH for a meeting with my practicum adviser and realized that my world as I know it is almost over. (I'm waiting for the sympathy to start...really, I am.) As most of you know, I currently work a sweet part time job 20 hours a week. This gives me 4 days a week to basically do whatever I desire, which mostly consists of going to the beach. Tuesday I was informed that in addition to maintaining my current employment (which is of course my personal choice and based purely on my financial constraints of living the good life in HI), I must work 16 hours a week each semester doing practicum work (i.e. free labor) and attend classes. Holy Crap! The good news is that my practicum adviser is looking for places up here so maybe I won't have to commute an hour to that as well. I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed by all of this and have decided to live up this last month. I got a little sunburned Tuesday after my meeting laying out at the beach processing all of this, so I was going to do chores today around the house...however I've caught wind of a baby monk seal hanging out at Turtle Bay and I feel compelled to go track it down. Pics will follow if I find it!!

Monday, July 19, 2010

A Fruitful Paradise

One of the perks of living in Haleiwa now is that we actually live in a neighborhood again, as opposed to on the side of the Kam Hwy. It's a much nicer, homey feel and Eve loves all the kids being around to entertain her. She actually wants to go outside and play. This has never before happened in life. One of our neighbors is this sweet Brazilian guy that mows our yard for a ridiculously low price (although we have a ridiculously small yard)and he brings us fruit from the trees in our neighborhood. We have a mango tree in our driveway, but no mango picker and once they fall they are pretty much not edible. I came home last week to papayas on my front steps. Today I drove up and he was harvesting our tree and gave me a huge bag of mangoes and guavas. Now, I am still learning what to do with all of these delicious tropical fruits and mostly I bake them into things. I've made mango and papaya bread that have both turned out great (if I do say so myself). CRH makes a spicy shrimp nacho that calls for fresh mango, but our repertoire is limited. The first time this man brought mangoes over, he told us about this mango ice cream he makes but wasn't overly specific in the recipe. CRH has asked me several times to find out the details and today when he dropped off the latest batch, I inquired. It's super easy and I decided to make both mango and guava ice cream. The mango rules, the guava not so much. Guavas confuse me in that I don't know which parts you can eat and if you scoop out the seeds, you are left with very little fruit. Halfway into the guava cutting, I had CRH ask a local girl how exactly one eats this fruit. She said the seeds are edible, but sadly they give ice cream a really weird texture. So, the guava ice cream didn't make it, but when you visit be sure to ask for the mango one...super yum.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Day of Weird

I've been a horrible blogger lately...I know it. My friend Becky just came for a visit that was pure awesomeness. I think I've convinced another East Coast person to move to HI!! That's my secret mission you get all of my friends and family to relocate here to paradise. She and I had a great time snorkeling at Hanauma Bay and Shark's Cove, hanging at the beach, going to Schofield for the fireworks, visiting Chinatown and Waikiki, and drinking it up. I'd post pics, but sadly I don't think I took any and my desktop still has a virus. I've still been without a car for the past few weeks and today finally decided to do something about it.
I went to the Honda dealership in town a few weeks ago and they pissed me off enough that I left and ignored all of their follow up calls. I decided that today was car day. I really needed to move on this and quit sitting around and waiting for someone to deliver one to my door, because clearly that wasn't going to happen...although friends have been kind to let us mooch.
CRH and I got up this morning and drove to town to look at a Jetta. I like the Jettas and I liked this car until I test drove it and we noticed all sorts of issues. I've never been to a dealership that cared less if I purchased a car from them. Seriously, this guy couldn't have given a rat's ass if I bought that car or not, so I left. I've turned into a super bitch at car dealerships. I've decided that I'm sick and tired of being screwed in them. My MO is to start off all sweet and drive a car to make them want to sell to me, but then at finance time my true colors shine through.
Anyway, we then hit up a car dealership on the way back to Haleiwa. I immediately picked out a car that I liked and someone was moving it for a test drive. I questioned this as a sale tactic, but maybe it was legit...who knows. CRH looked at a car that he thought he might want instead of the PT Cruiser, but decided not and then miraculously my '06 Hyundai Sonata reappeared for test driving. I liked it for the price and style and told the salesman that I wanted it. We haggled over price and payment for long enough that after threatening to leave 2 times, I finally walked out. He followed me to my (CRH's) car and I told him my terms once again VERY firmly and told him to call me if he could meet them. I peeled out of there to go pick up Eve and sure enough lo and behold he called me about an hour later willing and able to meet my previously, clearly stated terms and conditions. It's all such a game. While we were in the dealership the first time, there was a group of Japanese tourists seriously on a tour of the dealership. Our salesman said it happens all the time - how weird! Check this pic out - they are literally standing in front of the wall of salesmen listening to what I assumed to be a talk on those guys...snooze.

So we leave and the salesman calls with my terms and we head back to the dealership to sign the paperwork. I needed to stop by the post office on the way and what do we see in the parking lot, but my Volvo for sale!! The irony was outstanding. They have my poor old car sitting in the lot of the Pizza Hut/USPS on sale for $3300 OBO. I guess they got it running enough to sell, but not enough to donate to a family. CRH felt the need to commemorate this weirdness with a photo op. Priceless, right?

Back at the dealership, we complete the sale and I head off in my new car...only to get it onto the highway and it start lurching along. The rpms were totally high as I would accelerate and the car would almost lose power completely if I took my foot off the gas. When I went up a very small hill, the car also seemed to lose power and the brakes were metal on metal. I had test driven it, but around the block in not at fast speeds. I called CRH and told him I was turning around when a guy behind me pulled up and yelled at me that my emergency brake seemed to be wasn't. I called Ivan, my poor, poor salesman and told him I was headed back. Ivan hates me now by the way after I broke bitch on him at the end of our initial bargaining. I get back and tell Ivan my woes with the car and remind him that I did in fact purchase the extended warranty, so I'd like a rental car while they fix this one. You should have seen the look on his face. I'm obviously the first person to have ever asked for a rental the same day of purchase. The whole day was so weird...weird and funny in the end. I'll put up a pic of my "new" car when I get it, but for now I'm driving a rental Honda Civic.