Saturday, June 30, 2012

Breakfast Pie

I found this concept on Pinterest. They were using Pillsbury crescent rolls, which I think are nasty, so I replaced them with homemade biscuit dough rolled out and cut into triangles. It turned out FANTASTIC!

It was really easy too. I used 6 eggs and we got 2 meals out of it. (it reheats well under the broiler on low). All it is is biscuit dough made into a sun shape using one circle and a bunch of triangles. Then scramble up some eggs (with milk so it's creamy) mix in cooked bacon and cheese. Place on biscuit dough and fold in the sun rays to make a cute little package. I cooked it the same temp and time it called for in my biscuit recipe and tada! Super easy fancy breakfast :)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

This is an Oahu Saturday!

You wake up at 8:30 on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.
The weather- Rain in the morning. Sun in the Afternoon.
What do you do?
If that island is named is Oahu this is what you do:

Start with a Jungle Hike.
(They are the best for a rainy morning!)
Head out to Ahupua'a 'O Kahana State Park
(don't worry, no entry fee!)
Hop on any of the amazing trails...
How about Nakoa Trail?

Enjoy the incredible songs of  the tropical birds:

Stop and notice the AMAZING flowers:
Yes, I took this picture! It is a Philippine Ground Orchid (I think)

Some relative of the Sweet Pea?

Macaw flower?

Red Ginger

Get side-tracked:

Over and over again:

Don't forget to look down!

Make notes on your map so you can come back to awesome spots when it's clear-water day.

Once the mosquito's become too intense, hike out at a quick pace.

By this time it is afternoon.
Take advantage of that sun by snorkeling.

May I recommend the famous Sharks Cove:

Don't be afraid to have you MIND BLOWN by the quantity, variety and boldness of fish, clarity of the water, and the sea turtle who is as curious about you as you are about her. 

Achilles Tangs? They were all in pairs! Sooo cute :)

If the deep water currents have chilled you, warm up next door in the bathtub-warm pools of Pupukea Beach Park:

Wash off all that salt, and take a nap.

Realize how FANTASTIC your life is :)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

5 minutes a day bread

I found this awesome concept of 5 mins a day for fresh homemade bread!
Here is the video to the basic recipe and concept:

They sell 2 books:

And then a whole wheat version:

On their website it talked about baking this amazing 5 min bread in the crock-pot:
This I had to try!
My bucket o' dough and my crock pot:
This is what the dough looks like after rising.
One pound of dough ready to go!
It ended up taking more like 1.5 hours to cook and we put it under the broiler for 3-5 mins.
It was so yummy, we started eating it way too fast! I got the hiccups and we didn't get any pictures until  this was all that remained.
It was a little too moist. Left an almost 'gummy' texture to it. But, it was still very good and made great sandwiches:
A few days later I grabbed my Bucket o' Dough out of the fridge 
And made rolls!!
I cooked these for 2 hours. This is how light their tops are:
So, under the broiler they went.
These were less moist but they still had too much moisture to be just right.
I decided to use my last section of dough and do it in the oven like in the video.
Here is the fresh dough ball
 Here it is after rising 60 mins ( it took too long to rise... I think my yeast may have gotten a bit stale.)
 and TADA!!

This one definitely had the best texture! Good moisture content, flaky crispy crust, cleaner slicing. It was still a bit dense, but I'm not sure if that's the old yeast or the recipe. I'll update this when I use fresher yeast.

Overall I'm really happy with this! So happy, I'm saving up for the books :) The crock pot method worked well enough and was a lifesaver, as it has been a ridiculously hot week here. I think it would be an awesome present for someone stuck in college dorms, too. All you need is a mini fridge and crock pot to have fresh bread in your room!
As for me it makes home cooked bread far easier and cheaper that store bought stuff! And once I buy whole wheat four it will be healthier as well :)

6-22-12 UPDATE:
Made a new batch last night with fresh from the freezer yeast.
It was perfect! 

6-24-12 UPDATE:

If you are in a hurry it also makes a decent pizza crust. You won't find yourself saying "wow this is a great crust", and getting in stretched out is no fun, but it gets the job done and is definitely edible.

7-20-12 UPDATE:
Mix Ins!
I've been trying mix-ins to add some fun flavors
I just kneed them in to each chunk I pull out of the fridge bucket before I let them rise.
This one is a Olive Oil, Herbs (fresh home grown basil, garlic chives, parsley and a touch of garlic salt), and Cheese (I have a 3 cheese shredded mix we get at costco and then threw in some Parmesan too.)
It is fantastic! I've made it twice now :)

This one is a Butter Brown Sugar And Cinnamon. Its crust was a lot harder than the normal recipe, but it had a lovely light sweet flavor. I made a brown sugar cream cheese spread for it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Accidental Gibson

I love Gibson Girl hair.
I have often wished that I could just wake up one day with hair ready to go like this:
It has been super hot here lately. Add that to a nasty fever and my solution to hair was throwing it in a sad excuse of a bun on the tip top of my head so it wouldn't bother me while I passed out on the couch. And then the strangest thing happened ... 
I woke up with Gibson Girl hair!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Spanish Dancer

We saw a big one of these 'Spanish Dancer' sea slugs on the bottom of the ocean on one of our snorkeling adventures. It was pretty, but we could only watch it sit there. Today we caught a cute little one:
And she was dancing!

(sorry about the wind noise)

We also found this lovely Red Eyed Rock Crab.

Love the colors. :)

Yet as beautiful as it is, I can't help but think, 
Mmmm those claws look yummy ;)

The Squeaky Wheel Gets The Worm

Several weeks ago while we out exploring I stopped at an Aloha Gas to get a drink. I found a fun looking product called Activate Drinks:

It stores the vitamins and flavors in the cap and you twist it to release it into the water. It is supposed to keep the vitamins fresh. It has 0 calories, No preservatives, is sweetened with Stevia, and it's bottle is BPA free and is constructed of 100% post consumer recycled plastic. Sounded like a dream product.
Sadly when I tried it it tasted AWFUL!

So, I sent them an email asking for a refund. They had awesome customer service and were of the opinion that I must have gotten a bad bottle. To prove it to me they FedEx'd an entire case to our house free of charge so I could try them again, ALL of the Flavors!

I hesitantly tried one last night and am super happy to report:

So ya, if you are ever out and about and would like a vitamin filled, lightly sweet, fun water I would highly recommend Activate :)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

3 Surprises!

We decided to stay in this year for our anniversary I told Richard that we would probably have a nice supper or something this weekend, but that was just a fib so that I could surprise him with this when he got off work: 
He really likes to go out to restaurants so I decorated the table up like a fancy restaurant and made fondue :)
He also was in the surprising spirit and brought me home these lovely lilies :)

Those were both very happy surprises the third ... not so much.

I'm pretty sure I have hand-foot-and-mouth disease! :( 
This is quite surprising because I have almost no human contact! But it is more common here in Hawaii. I got it bad too. It is all over the soles of my feet, the palms of my hands, the pads of my fingers, in my nose and throat! And my sores itch along with the pain. I think I may go nuts.
It's only supposed to last 3-7 days though so at least my suffering will be brief  
: /

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Silver Screen Romance

Oh, in your eyes 
I see everything in black and white
the pictures of our perfect life
Here, by your side
You make me feel so young again
and I wanna live forever
Your my Bette Davis I'm your Cary Grant
We'll stay young forever
Living in a silver screen romance. 
-Good Charlotte

This song has always reminded me of us. I got that guy that Hollywood made up; The ridiculously good looking, smart, funny, loyal, hard working guy that everyone says is myth. 
And 3 years ago today I married him! 
He's my best friend. It sounds so terribly cliche, but it is true. We have had the best time together! So many adventures packed into such a short time. He has become such an integral part of me is hard to even remember not being together. 

3 years experienced together 
Forever and always ahead of us

Monday, June 4, 2012

Another Negative Tide

I have always prided myself in scientifically understanding the world around me. I love to know the names of the plants and animals. To understand their life-cycles and food chains. To know the hows and whys of the geology and weather that play a part in my daily life. 

The exception to this seems to be tides. If you asked me before we moved here what makes tides I would have said, "They have to do with the Moon's gravitational effect on the Earth ." Now that I've married a Zoologist, and have moved to Hawaii, tides have become a regular part of my life. I thought to myself, "I should become more informed about tides." So, I started to research. I read and read, and watched videos and studied tide charts until my brain ached and now if you ask me what makes tides I will slump my shoulders shake my head sadly and respond.."Oh, I don't know ... something to do with the Moon...Probably magic." 

Well no matter, That moon magic made us a lovely -.9 tide this weekend and whenever that happens I get a very happy husband :) 

 Here is one of those mantis shrimp that beat me up last time but it is a 'spearer' instead of a 'smasher' He's just playing dead which works out great for us because we can get this great shot of his underbelly.
 my blue square didn't show up well, but you can really see how good their camouflage is. Add that to the fact that they are really fast and its amazing we ever catch them.
 This cute little guy is called a coral banded shrimp. He only has one pincer left :(
I got the 'micro' setting on my camera to do its thing. I just love this shot! You can see his little tiny body so clearly considering he is only a fraction of this size and underwater.
I still think these rock crabs are my favorite! Richard usually has to find them for me but I just think they are so nifty!

 Plus look at the cute little grumpy face! I just want to snuggle him!

 Here he is with his legs and eyes out.
 Here is a feisty crab Richard found sunning itself right after molting.
 All of the locals LOVE Richard. But only Richard! If I'm out there with him every one is nice and polite but the don't come near us. However, if I go lay down on the beach or go off to the restroom this happens:

 and there were many more! They come and ask him what he's up to. Offer him their catches, check out the stuff in his bucket. 
I'm trying to figure out what I'm doing that is scaring people away. I thought it might be because I'm freakishly white, But Richard thinks it has more to do with the fact that I'm a girl. Gender roles are still really big here. I'm going to try and be more outgoing and see if that helps. But who knows, maybe I just need a new deodorant ;)
 Richard finally caught one of the elusive gobies! They are jumpers and are almost impossible to corner.

 This is a snowflake eel! Richard found him right as the tide was coming in. 

Richard got it out of the water and almost into the bucket, but at the last second it wriggled out of the net and sploosh - back into the water. Richard searched the pool for the next 20 mins but couldn't even find a trace of it. The tide had come in and it was time to go but Richard was so upset over his loss he kept pacing back and forth over the little rock ledge that hadn't quite submerged yet. It was like watching a little kid who is so tired but just won't go to sleep because they are afraid they'll miss something if they do. The only consolation I could give him is we could go home and look at the pictures blown up and he could identify them on his new favorite website:

I am thinking of making Richard his own separate blog where he can post more of his tide pool and other scientific findings. That way when you guys come to look at our blog it wont be just a million shots of tiny animals in an ice cream bucket :)