Category Archives: Activities

Nordstrom Spa Experience

I am holding the Nordstrom level four credit card. However, I never exercise my benefit of a complementary spa treatment. It came across my mind of trying it out several times but I always dismissed it. Under my daughter’s encouragement, I invited her to join me. She is twenty but is more brave than me of trying out new thing. Anyhow, she fits the appointment into her busy schedule. We had lunch and shopped before our appointment. It was lovely to spend the extra time with my daughter. I wanted to tell her “l love you” again and again.

We arrived at Nordstrom spa 10 minutes early. The receptionists were welcoming and warm. After we checked in, we were lead to the changing rooms to get into our robes and waited in the parlor to start the foot baths.

It was a new experience for both of us. We took our time talking and gauging and guessing what will come next. The staff was very attentive. They were busy filling our water and gave us time to soak the feet in the warm water. We were well-pampered.

After the parlor time, the pleasant massage therapist lead us to separate treatment rooms.  She politely asked me if I had any special work-ons. She also instructed me  how to get on the table and where to hang the robe. With soothing music and dim lights, I was totally unwound in my relaxing massage room.

My massage started from my right leg up. She put lavender oil on her palm and worked systemicly to smoothing each muscle out of any knots.   I could feel the tense escaping and i almost fell asleep. The same treatment was applied  to my left leg and back torso, followed by treatment of my left arm and then right arm.

The 1-1/2 hour massage put my muscles, bones back to the right place physically, and elaborated the mood mentally. The total experience was amazingly refreshing. I felt so much better than before I went in. The spa experience was my self-investment to my health.  I promised Nordstrom Spa secretly that I would come back.

Top Tip For Season Changeover

October in California is warm and golden during day but cold at night. It is really awkward to put all the light weigh clothes away. It always feels I may need it sometimes. This anguish thoughts usually put the transaction on hold until I run out of reasons to delay the task . Actually, the season changing process can be smooth and fun. Don’t take it as a one-time job but think it as a month long process. The secret is to put something away after each laundry.  The summer-colored breezy materials can go first, then shorts, sandals. It is also a good time to sort out out-of-favors, out-of-shapes, and new favorites to come back the next year.  Leave out something fun that I can layering them in the fall.

Each time you put away a few clothes, you bring out some cold weather pieces. Start from thicker jackets, cold weather colored shirts, cardigan and then sweaters and heavier coats.  Other than the lightweight denims, most of my jeans are staying. The denims are essential of my closets.

This is also a good time to sort out the out-of-favored fall/winter clothes. One stone kills two birds: Declutter the closet and season change over at the same time.  Now you have put away the summer cloth and reorganize the cold weather outfit. You are done until next time.


One minute spa

Aloe vera is a common house plant. They are well recognized as  the thick, pointed, fleshy leafy green.  This cactus is easy to grow and survive well. Planty of researches all advocate the benefits of this humble plants. One thing that intrigue me is the power to hydrate the skin, fight aging, and lighten blemishes. It can take years of my face when applied daily. The gooey Aloe Vera translucent gel is the main ingredient that does it all.

This gel contains 96% of water and types of proteins that can be found in human body. They are rich in vitamin A, C, E and beta carotene. Those compounds are the crux of the multi-million dollars beauty industry.

You don’t have to spend money on aloe vera beauty products. And don’t bother to add any by products to make aloe vera work better. The only thing you need is one aloe vera plant. All you need to do is cut a fleshy leaf, trim the spike and bring out the gooey gel. Apply the sticky gel to your face and neck area. It is cooling and soothing and you can fill the tightness of the skin as it dries out.

I use the gooey gel every night after shower and wash them off the next morning.  Don’t forget to store the unused leaf in a zip lock bag and refrigerate it until next use. This  “express  spa” is a cost effective way to fight the aging and improve the skin health.  You  will feel good about it.


Simple Pork Broth Noodle

This is so unexpected. My daughter brought her boyfriend Rocky and my son brought her girlfriend Phoebe home for this weekend. Philip and I were delighted to meet them.

These adult kids are too busy to cook for themselves. I am more than happy to prepare some easy, delicious and nutritious meal for them. I happened to have some simple pork broth so I made a delicious pork soup noodles with chopped scallions. You may add some green if you have them handy.


2 cups of home made pork broth
2 scallions minced
1 handful or fresh ramen noodle

salt and ground pepper

In a large pot, bring the pork broth to broil. Add salt to the broth. In the meantime, cook the noodle according instruction. Drain the noodle, ladle the hot broth into the noodle and top with scallions and fresh ground pepper.

This  noodle can be prepared quickly and served as light brunch or lunch if accompanied by a few small dishes.

Day 4

Today is my daughter’s 20th birthday. Her birthday we celebrated in Honolulu. Before the big birthday event, we have places to go , things to do.

First thing this morning, farmer’s market. We have to visit this one for local specialties. The first stop is the grilled albocal. Simple grill and some lemon juice. The taste of albocal is true and authentic.

venemise sandwich from the lady pig is ok, but the fried ruchinni is so yammi. After the farmer market, diamond head national park is next.

i was hesitating to go because Alexander has no proper shoes. He looked ok so we go on the hike. It is a 2 miles long not difficult walk. Some place are rocky and steep, the tunnel is low and dark. You can bump to people if you don’t stay in your side, you can smell the sweat when more people are in the tunnel. It is a crowed hike. The view of the island is a great reward.

After the 90 minutes hiking, we decide to go to mitsuwa to have the noodles for Kimberly ‘s birthday. The ramen is as expected because we have the same store in San Jose. I also bought rice for the next few days.

We decide to rent a DVD for the afternoon before we go on the hula tiki for Kimberly ‘s birthday. The movie is called the passenger. The story is inspiring. Live with someone you love now is better than dreaming to live someone in the future you might love. In another words, make the right choice.

kalvin and Alexander were dressed better for Kimberly’s birthday. What Kimberly wants, what Kimberly gets. They spoiles their sister. I am happy for Kimberly because she has two brothers she can count on and I am proud for me and Philip because we have the fine sons and daughter. The demonstrate the love and loyalty to their families. They will never be alone.





Day 3

We decided to take the hour long bus ride to pay our respect in Arizona memorial, pearl harbour. The long bus ride from the sky high downtown building to the less fancy, local area. We visit the tanioka’s seafood store to get the authentic local food. We got poki bowel, octopus salad, seaweed salad and local nameless desert made of coconut, taro.

We had picnic under a palm tree outside the memorial. The picnic is helirous because of kids comments. Brilliant kids spoke ridiculous ideas that sort of things.

The layout of the park are simple and easy to navigate. We went into the short film room and walk around the educational posts. the memorial park expand a lot since our visit in 2013. They relearned the history with a more matured Point of view. The invasion, the war, the lost life, history is a lesson to learn.

Friday night is the firework night. We went to the rainbow lanai Friday BBQ buffet. Philip an I agreed we need to feed our big boys. The boys love the buffet. The food elevated their spirits. We had the table with the ocean view. The overall environment is pleasant, food are ok but the most important thing is that they are happy and satisfied.

Fire work is not that impressive. We will see how the one in Fourth of July goes.

Evening swim in the ocean is a luxury. The wave was gentle and the air was warm. My kids decide to have the night swim and dig holes. The view of the buildings surround the Waikiki beach. It is a incredible view. My kids are having fun but there is one element that is absent. I wish my husband can be here to be with me and watch our kids play together. I will not let him miss something like this the next time.

Day 2

I have the greatest kids in this whole wide world. We had the foodland supermarket poki the previous night. It is delicious and pricy. I thought Costco will be a one stop shop for fruits and poki and some indulgenous. However, after 45 minutes bus ride and 10 minutes walk under the sun. The price of poki is pricier, the mando were import from Mexico. They do have the Dale pineapples. We bought 3 pineapples, local mushroom, shrimp salad, some poki and papayas.

It is not a fruitful trip but my kids help me find the way here and carried the heavy pineapples. I am the luckiest mom in this world.

I made rice to go with poke, shrimp salad and microwaved mushroom. Papayas and pineapples after lunch.

We went to the beach after lunch. The sun is warm but not hot. They are ready to snorkeling and swimming in this beautiful ocean. Kimberly spotted a medium sized yellowish turtle, Kalvin saw the blue striped small fish. Alexander have fun just swim in the ocean. I was delighted to see them enjoy the ocean, the companies of brothers and sister. Hopefully, the short description will help my husband to see how we had the second day of the vacation.

After the ocean, they decided they wanted to go to the pool to relax. I dropped chips accidentally and attracted lots pigeons. They are not afraid of people here. They pick the chips from my hands. I know the rule of not feeding wild animals but it just happened.

our dinner stroll lead to the discovery of huge change since last time we visit Oahu. Tons of new shops, eatery, cafe and high end boutiques. The night life are even more vivid with the outdoor concert, street performer, fancy coffee shops and hips cafe. There is a farmer market in the kings street. We sampled Hawaiian topical, donuts. We end up go back to the udon place for dinner.

We strolled down the Kalakaua ave, turning into every interesting corner and avenues. Lots of new shops and crowded with tourist. The atmosphere is energizing. Continue later.