Thursday, September 30, 2021

Booster Shot

Me and my mom got our booster shots yesterday.  We went to Kapiolani Medical Center for our Pfizer booster.  You need to meet certain criteria (for us it was being 65 years old or older with our initial 2 shots being more than 6 months ago), and it was easy to schedule.  You can make your appointment here

Parking is free or you can use their valet service for $8.


Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Dd's Pork Carnitas

We haven't had Internet (or TV reception) for the past 3 days.  We thought our modem broke, but turned out that wasn't it.  Spectrum guy comes tomorrow.

I've been able to log on using my iPhone as a hotspot, but I'm trying to limit my time so gotta do this fast-kine.  

Here's Dd's Pork Carnitas.

pork carnitas




1 ½ tsp. kosher salt

2 tsp. chili powder

2 tsp. ground cumin

2 tsp. dried oregano

½ tsp. coarsely ground black pepper

2 # boneless pork shoulder, cut into 2-in. pieces

2 tsp. olive oil

1 c. beef stock

2 strips orange zest, 3-inches long

Juice of 1 orange

2 medium onions, thinly sliced, divided

6 cloves garlic, smashed

1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded, thinly sliced

Garnish: cilantro, avocado, pickled red onions, shredded Jalapeno Monterey Jack cheese


In a mixing bowl toss together pork with rub ingredients well. In a large saucepot 

over medium heat brown pork pieces in oil. Add broth, orange juice, ½ of onion, 

garlic and jalapeno. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer. Cover; cook 30 minutes. 

Turn pork pieces; continue cooking 30 minutes. Add remaining sliced onion and 

orange zest. Continue cooking 1 hour until meat is tender and shreds easily. Bring 

to a high simmer, shredding meat with 2 forks, until liquid is reduced and coats meat, 

10-12 minutes. Serve with tortillas, Mexican rice and garnishes as desired. Serves 3-4.

Sunday, September 26, 2021

On Da Desk

Here's one of my latest greeting card creations.  I hadn't planned on doing three, but it was challenging and fun, so I kept on trying.

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This is what I was trying to copy.
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Friday, September 24, 2021

Intermittent Fasting and Glucose Levels

I've been "trying" to do the 16/8 intermittent fast where you only eat during an 8-hour period.  I'm hoping that it'll not only help with my dieting but also help lower my glucose blood numbers.

My next doctor's visit and blood test is next month.

I found the following info from the Nutri|Sense site here.  

How intermittent fasting affects glucose levels

When it comes to IF and blood glucose, the results are so much more than just calories and weight loss. IF is a boon for numerous bodily systems. It lowers blood glucose. It increases our bodies’ sensitivity to insulin. It reduces inflammation. It makes our digestive and metabolic processes more adaptable, and it can even change when and how our bodies make blood sugar.

Lower insulin levels

While our body does produce some insulin throughout the day, the majority of insulin release happens when we eat. Counting meals and snacks, the typical adult eats six or seven times a day. This means our insulin levels spike six or seven times a day. IF, by reducing the frequency of eating and snacking, lessens our insulin spikes and reduces our body’s overall insulin levels.

Why is this good? Because, in addition to its role in regulating our blood sugar levels, insulin plays a part in cell growth, and both DNA and RNA synthesis. Dangerous increases in insulin levels not only impact our blood sugar, but can hinder cell growth and bodily regeneration.

Increased insulin sensitivity

IF’s increased insulin sensitivity goes hand-in-hand with reduced insulin levels. The more our insulin spikes, the more our body becomes accustomed to insulin (like needing more coffee in the morning the longer you drink it). So the next time we eat, our body needs to spike even more insulin to get the job done. 

Additionally, reductions in adiposity (the scientific term for losing body fat) increase our sensitivity to insulin. And wouldn’t you know? One of the benefits of IF is that the weight we lose tends to be fat. This reduces our “adiposity” and increases our insulin sensitivity. 

Even with no weight loss, with no reduction in our body fat, science suggests IF still increases our bodies’ sensitivity to insulin. The bodily changes triggered by IF tend to “reprogram” our metabolism. In this scenario, our bodies are like a computer on the fritz—turning it off and back on again usually fixes the problem. IF is like a power switch, resetting how our bodies respond to insulin. Increased insulin sensitivity means our bodies require less insulin to lower our blood glucose.

Lower inflammation

Our bodies become inflamed as a response to stressors. We often think of stressors as germs or viruses, but the process of metabolizing food is an energy-intensive process that puts oxidative stress on our bodies. Too much oxidative stress makes it difficult for our bodies to detoxify; it’s why so many products and supplements tout themselves as “antioxidants.”

IF, it turns out, is a kind of all-natural antioxidant. Because those who practice IF intentionally limit when they eat, they also, by extension, limit the oxidative stress of metabolism. Limiting this kind of stress is key; a number of diseases—Alzheimers, Parkinson’s, and, most pertinently, diabetes—are thought to arise from excess inflammation and oxidative stress. Lowering inflammation through IF can reduce our susceptibility to these diseases and lessen our symptoms if we already have them. 

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Soon Dubu Kit

Here's another Naomi recommendation.  It's ready-made Soon Dubu.  The kit contains only soft tofu and broth, but it's ono.  I got it from Palama Market and it was $3.99.  I got the Medium Hot, but there's also a Hot version if you like spicy.

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I added leftovers to it . . . shrimp, cauliflower and carrots.  Fast and yummy!
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Monday, September 20, 2021

Keto Taco Skillet

 Here's another recipe from my friend Naomi.  It's from the Cast Iron Keto site.  It came out goooood.  Wendell called it "Spanish Rice".

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  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 white onion, diced
  • 1/2 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 4oz can green chilis
  • 3 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 2 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 12 ounces cauliflower rice
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese


  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 jalapeño, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, minced


  • Heat the oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Once hot add in the beef and cook while crumbling with a wooden spoon until it starts to brown.
  • Add in the onion, bell pepper, and taco seasoning and cook 3 minutes or until the onion and pepper starts to soften.
  • Stir in the green chiles and tomatoes along with the cauliflower rice. Cook 5-7 minutes until most of the moisture has evaporated.
  • Sprinkle with cheese and cover just until melted, about 2 minutes. Top with desired toppings and serve.


Saturday, September 18, 2021


I developed a stye infection on my right lower eyelid a couple of months ago.  I'm not really sure how I got it, but I might've caused an abrasion trying to get an eyelash out of my eye with a tissue.

I reluctantly went to the doctor when it didn't go away after about a week.  She prescribed an antibiotic ointment that I was to apply for around 3 days and if that didn't work I was to take two different types of oral antibiotics simultaneously for a week.

I did all of the above, and the inflammation did subside, but it never really went away.  A thin sliver of pus could be seen trapped under intact skin, not causing any discomfort, but seemingly lying in a dormant state just waiting for the right moment to flare up again.

A couple of weeks ago I decided to try using some MediHoney on it.  I had given away my tube awhile back so I ordered another one from Amazon.  It was $6.99 for a small tube.  

After a few days of carefully (it stings if it gets in my eye) applying small dabs, a breakthrough occurred.  An accumulation of moist pus(?) slough(?) gunk(?) appeared along my lash line.  After washing it off I could see a noticeable improvement.  For the first time in a long time the lid looked healed and lesion-free.

It's been a week now and a very slight redness remains, but I'm hopeful that that too will soon be gone.  What a relief!

You can find more info on Medihoney here.  


I found the information below about honey at the NCBI website here.

Honey is a powerful antimicrobial agent with a wide range of effects. Various components contribute to the antibacterial efficacy of honey: the sugar content; polyphenol compounds; hydrogen peroxide; 1,2-dicarbonyl compounds; and bee defensin-1. All of these elements are present at different concentrations depending on the source of nectar, bee type, and storage. These components work synergistically, allowing honey to be potent against a variety of microorganisms including multidrug resistant bacteria and modulate their resistance to antimicrobial agents. 

Low pH:  The optimal growth of most microorganisms occurs at neutral pH, ranging from 6.5 to 7.5. The acidity of honey, between pH 3.2 and pH 4.5, is a very marked characteristic of its antibacterial efficacy.   Tissue repair is enhanced by the low pH of honey causing a reduction in protease activity on the wound site, elevating oxygen release from hemoglobin and stimulating fibroblast and macrophage activity. 

High Sugar Content:  Pure, undiluted honey inhibits the growth of bacteria due to its sugar content, which exerts osmotic pressure on bacterial cells, causing water to flow out of the bacterial cells via osmosis. As a result, the cells shrink due to dehydration and are unable to survive in the hypertonic sugar solution. 

Production of Hydrogen Peroxide:  When honey is diluted, glucose oxidase is activated and acts on endogenous glucose to produce H2O2.  Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is a disinfectant and a strong oxidizing agent. It provides honey with its antibacterial efficacy and is produced enzymatically. The enzyme glucose oxidase is naturally present in an inactive state in honey due to the low pH conditions.  Furthermore, H2O2 has antiseptic effects, and it disinfects the wound site and stimulates production of vascular endothelial growth factor. 

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Toscana Soup

I recently found out that my friend Naomi is also on a diet.  She started in February and has lost 28 pounds.  She's shorter than me (I'm 5' 1"), so that is a LOT.

She turned me on to this recipe.  It's from Natasha's Kitchen site.  She said that she used cauliflower instead of potatoes and spinach instead of kale and instead of 6 cups of water she put in 4 cups.  I copied her exactly, and ho came out so ono.




  • 6 oz bacon chopped
  • 1 lb Italian Sausage The "Hot" variety
  • 1 medium head garlic 10 large cloves, peeled and minced or pressed
  • 1 medium onion finely diced
  • 4 cups chicken broth/stock (32 oz)
  • 6 cups water (48 oz)
  • 5 medium russet potatoes peeled and chopped into 1/4" thick pieces
  • 1 kale bundle leaves stripped and chopped (6 cups)
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • Parmesan cheese to serve optional


In a large pot over medium-high heat, add chopped bacon and sauté until browned.  Remove bacon and spoon out excess oil, leaving about 1 tablespoon in the pot.

Add Italian sausage, breaking it up with your spatula and sauté until cooked through (5 minutes).  Remove.

Finely dice onion and add to the pot. Saute 5 minutes or until soft and golden.  Add minced garlic and saute 1 minute.

Add 4 cups broth and 6 cups water and bring to a boil.  Add sliced potatoes and cook 13-14 minutes or until easily pierced with a fork.

When potatoes are nearly done, add chopped kale and cooked sausage and bring everything to a light boil.

Stir in 1 cup cream and bring to a boil.  Season to taste with salt and black pepper then remove from heat.  Garnish with bacon and grated parmesan.


      Here's a video you can watch:

      Tuesday, September 14, 2021

      Condensed Milk Pound Cake

      We have a couple of cans of condensed milk that expired at the end of last month so I hunted around for recipes where I could use some of it.  I found this recipe on the Martha Stewart web site.  Wendell said that it was really good.


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      I like this shot 'cause you can see Wendell buttering up his piece. 

      My cake was done in 55 minutes.  I didn't add the glaze.

      Sunday, September 12, 2021

      Hamada General Store

      Wendell picked up dinner from Hamada General Store sometime last week.  Everything was super ono. 

      Wafu Hamburger Steak ($13.00)

      Salmon Katsu ($16.00)

      Tofu Watercress Salad ($9.00). This also came with taegu to put on top if you like for $3 more.  I liked it so much that I later went to the market to pick up taegu, tofu and lettuce to make more of the same.

      Friday, September 10, 2021

      Barley Edamame Salad

      I wanted to make use of the barley that I got from Whole Foods so I decided to make a version of Tysha's Edamame Rice but with barley instead of rice.

      I soaked 2 cups of barley in water for about 3 hours and then boiled it for 1/2 hour.  I drained and added about 3/4 of a 16 oz. bag of shelled edamame . . . 

      and this jar of Nametake Mushrooms that I found (after searching and searching) at Foodland (it's by the tofu).

      Before eating I sprinkled on this furikake. 

      It has a nice texture with a nutty flavor, and unlike rice you can eat it straight outta the 'fridge.  Landon said that if it wasn't so carby he would "pound" it.  Yes, it turns out that although it's way more nutritious than rice, barley is "carby" and has 3 times more calories than rice.  I discovered this AFTER I made the salad.  EEK!!

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      Wednesday, September 8, 2021

      Side Street Inn Take Out

      We ordered take out from Side Street Inn this past Sunday.  It was $$$$$ but didn't disappoint.  

      Roast Pork Poke ($18.50)


      Garlic Chicken ($19)


      Combo Plate (Pork Chops and Boneless Kalbi - $24)



      Monday, September 6, 2021

      Wendell's Salmon and Kabocha

      Wendell made this about a month ago after seeing the recipe in HMSA's recent Island Scene magazine.  It was super tasty.

      "Alan Titchenal created this recipe with his wife, Joannie Dobbs, who’s also a certified nutrition specialist. Titchenal is a professor of nutrition at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa and has been Island Scene’s nutrition adviser for 20 years."



      1 lb. kabocha, peeled (optional) and cubed (1⁄2 to 3⁄4 inch)

      1⁄2 cup water

      12 oz. salmon, skinned, deboned, and cut into bite-sized pieces

      Thai basil leaves for garnish


      1⁄4 cup water

      2 Tbsp. reduced-sodium shoyu, or to taste

      2 Tbsp. yellow Thai curry paste

      3 Tbsp. creamy or chunky peanut butter

      In a small bowl, whisk sauce ingredients together until well blended. Set aside.

      Place kabocha and water in a large skillet and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook until almost done, about 5 minutes. Layer salmon pieces on kabocha, cover, and simmer until salmon is cooked, about 3 minutes. Add sauce and stir gently to combine. Garnish with Thai basil. Makes 6 servings

      Saturday, September 4, 2021

      Diet Update

      My weight fluctuates back and forth by 1 or even 2 pounds daily, but a few days ago according to my morning weigh-in I had lost 10.4 pounds, so I'm going with that.  🥳

      aug 29

      Here is my current snack of choice when I feel staaaaahving.  There are 9 thin sheets in each pack, so if I take my time eating it while sipping on some green tea, it can be quite satiating . . . for 20 calories.

      And then, yesterday morning I went in search of Wendell's dumbbell weights just to see exactly how heavy 10 pounds felt like.  I was surprised.  It's no wonder that I feel more mobile and have an easier time getting up off the couch now.  I was thinking that it was all in my mind, but maybe it's not.  I think my knees and my back are happy to be relieved of that burden.

      Okay, so now onward . . . 10 more pounds . . . by . . . when was it?  Thanksgiving?  I'm wondering if it's even possible 'cause ho it's getting harder and harder.

      Thursday, September 2, 2021