Apple Picking

apples
kozirsky/Shutterstock

One blog I read is Extra Petite, a style blog for petite women. Besides fashion, Jean blogs about makeup, her travels, and more recently, recipes. Gorgeous pictures flood every post, making each one very attractive. And she does all of this while highlighting her home city of Boston. Her blog makes me want to get on a plane and visit Beantown.

I can imagine it now…watching the sailboats glide along the Charles River, strolling through Boston Common and admiring the flowers in the Public Garden…going apple picking in the fall…

Okay, the main reason I want to go to Boston–and the East Coast in general–is to experience fall. On Extra Petite, Jean recently blogged about her and her husband’s apple picking adventure.

And I wanted to BE THERE!!!! What a fun way to start autumn, huh?

One thing about living in Hawaii is that there are only two “seasons”: summer and “winter,” the latter being cloudy and rainy. I think experiencing the seasons would be fun! Getting stuck (in my hotel room) in a blizzard would make for a great story back home, I’m sure. And so would sharing photos of the bright fall colors of the trees and my apple picking experience…

Have any of you picked seasonal fruit before? If you live on the East Coast, is fall all that I imagined it would be? Full of color, the smell of cider and pumpkin, and apple picking?

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My Pinky Journey

My left pinky has been swollen for about a month, and I finally saw my doctor last Wednesday. (I’m still not sure how it happened, but it’s annoying).

What’s great about my doctor is that she’s young and nice. She also knows what tests are needed to fully make a diagnosis. Case in point, she checked my joints for inflammation and told me that I needed to get blood drawn (to be 100% sure that there weren’t other areas of inflammation) and hand x-rays.

I decided to get the needlework over and done with first. Whenever I have to get shots, I CANNOT look at the needle going into my arm and coming out. It’s how I manage through it, actually. My logic is, if I can’t see it, I can get my mind thinking of something else faster and the pain won’t be terrible.

The hand x-rays were different, as I’ve only gotten a full body one. I sat in a room in front a large white machine and placed each hand, one after the other, in the middle of the table, which had marks on it. It looked like a target, but square. Each hand needed three x-rays.

All this for a swollen pinky.

I have a follow-up appointment in two weeks but received the news that I have to see a rheumatologist because I had a positive ANA test. When I heard that I immediately began thinking of the possible joint and bone diseases that might have caused it. (As you can tell, I worry). Of course, my parents told me to not think about it and not Google anything except who the doctor was because I was only going to make myself feel worse.

Positive thinking = positive outcome

But, my x-rays were normal! According to my mom, besides showing if bones are fractured, x-rays also display signs of arthritis and osteoporosis, so I’m safe from having those conditions.

*Breathe*

Everything will be fine.

I’m not going to think and talk about the unknown and focus on getting my pinky better with ibuprofen and ice.

 

Catching Up with the Cousin

My cousin, Todd, and I ate lunch yesterday at Ayame Curry & Ramen, a hole-in-the-wall Japanese restaurant in a shopping center. He ordered the cold noodles and gyoza, while I took the beef curry.

Our families used to live five minutes away from one another, so our moms would take us out to the beach, to restaurants, and do other kid stuff. He was, and still is, my “older brother.”

But since he moved to Vegas in 2011, the only time we saw each other was when my family went up during Christmas and/or summer. In between those times, we hardly talked to each other, except the yearly “happy birthday” text.

We talked about him possibly moving back home, but he doesn’t want to since Hawaii’s “so small,” work, and relationships.

After we walked around the shopping center eating ice cream: cotton candy for him, cookies & cream for me. When I dropped him off at his moms’, he told me, “Text me anytime. Just because I’m on the mainland doesn’t mean I’m dead.”

He was always the funny cousin.

And that’s what I miss about him. But I’m happy that he now makes an effort to come out and visit. And that we had our first grown-up outing since being adults!

Sunflowers at Waimanalo Country Farms

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Sunflowers…

They just scream “summer” right? That’s what I love about them, and ever since I heard that they were grown on Oahu (and Maui!), it’s been my mission to see sunflowers in person.

My first attempt was with a friend during winter. Word got out that the North Shore had sunflower fields so we drove up, only to end up in the middle of a large field of dirt. Needless to say, I was sad.

But that hasn’t stopped me.

As luck would have it, Matt sent me a link to a news article about sunflowers at Waimanalo Country Farms. I didn’t know that there was a farm out there, but I should’ve, since it was the country.

We went last Sunday morning, and I was excited! Waimanalo Country Farms is located in a residential area, high above the Pacific Ocean and the busy highway. The majestic Ko’olau Mountain Range is the farm’s backdrop, and it’s gorgeous. To make it even better, the farm faces the Pacific Ocean in all of its blue glory.

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View from the farm

The parking lot was fairly full when we arrived, and when we made our way to the ticket booth there was a short line. Next to it, there were stands selling sweet corn (if you’re on Oahu, you have to try Waimanalo sweet corn–sold at farmer’s markets or out of the bed of their corn truck–it’s the town’s specialty), and lemonade and sweet tea. Across the way people were lounging at picnic tables under a large white tent. I didn’t blame them, it was H-O-T that morning.

Admission was $2 and there was the option to take the tractor trailer up to the sunflowers or walk. We decided to do the latter, which was on a short dirt path lined with avocado and kiawe wood trees. And a goat, that was tied up near the entrance.

Unfortunately, since the news about the sunflowers came out after they were at their peak, they had started to wilt. However, there were still pretty ones standing tall (literally, some were towering over their slumped neighbors). People were taking photos galore with their iPhones and cameras, scoping out the best ones to show friends and family.

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Peek-a-boo!

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I look pretty happy, right?

We stayed for an hour, taking in the sunflowers and the stunning scenery. When we were heading back to the car the ticket line was longer: everyone wanted to see the sunflowers, apparently.

I’m glad that I was able to see the sunflowers, but I still want to see what the fields are like on the North Shore. Maybe I’ll go this year. However, if I miss them again, I now know that there’s a place showcasing these happy plants closer to home.