10 December 2005

Blog Buddy

I got to meet fellow blogger Hannah and her dear husband and cute baby. This was taken in Incheon where they live.

"Paige and Emily"

I met these twins. Their mom gave me permission to post their pic. She said the western nicknames were Paige and Emily. But later I saw them in writing as Daizy and Amy. Doesn't matter. I can't tell them apart anyway. Why should I know which set of names to call them? I get by with calling them "sweetie" and the like. Supposedly one of them has a freckle on her face by which you can tell them apart. Yeah, I can really see it too.

Or is that "Daizy and Amy"

Long Time No Blog

Here are the promised photos of Bucheon. It was a lot more charming before the snow fell and the bitter cold set in.

Back then the leaves were still falling from the trees. One kind (some call it a "tulip poplar", but I don't know for sure) was bigger than any I'd ever seen.

I couldn't resist a pic of this elderly couple walking in the park. Hopefully now that the weather has turned they are staying in out of the cold and off the ice.

13 October 2005

Local Park Looking Good

Took my walk at a county park today. Couldn't stay long because I forgot my hat! Do NOT like sun in the eyes. It was so bright out that photo-gray glasses AND pop on shades were no help at all. Now, back to a moment of silence in respect for the victims of the recent natural disasters.

09 October 2005

Giving YELLOW It's Day in the Sun

These were taken around the neighborhood. I'll stop with the Fall foliage pretty quick - but only because it won't be available much longer!

08 October 2005

저기저 ("um, uh") and 뭐랄까 ("what shall I say")

The title of this post actually has nothing to do with it's contents. I blatently lifted it from the the entertaining Space Nakji at
It's a good read. She should write a book!

The topic of the day is actually "how to respond when paid a complement about your children or spouse." As my good e-mail buddy, Robin Kim of Southern California, has been discussing with me, this can be awkward in Korean culture because if you say "Thank you" or agree, it looks like you are kind of bragging, or complimenting yourself in some way-as if you had something to do with it.

So, all you people out there who are enmeshed in Korean culture or anyone else who has faced this situation - here is Sunny's solution.

Korean Person: "Your daughter is so beautiful."
Sunny: (thinking "Sherlock Holmes has nothing on you" but saying out loud) "What shall I say, she takes after her grandmother in that respect."
Korean Person: (Nodding sagely) "Oh".

I admit in the above scenario the grandmother I might secretly be thinking of would be my own beautiful mother, but, see how that deflects the attention to Halmoni without agreeing with or denying the compliment? And, no one can deny Halmoni's own beauty.

Here's another.

Korean Person: "I heard your son is a little genius boy."
Sunny: (thinking "We heard that too, from his teachers, from his test scores, etc," but saying out loud) "Um, uh, he inherited it from his grandfather."
Korean Person: "Really?"
Sunny: Yes, Halabogi is one of the most intelligent gentlemen around. People just don't realize it because he is the quiet type. Still waters run deep, you know."
Korean Person: "Yeah...what you said."

Or, my favorite.

Korean Person: "You're so lucky to have such a good husband."
Sunny: "His father set him a good example."
Korean Person: "Huh?"
Sunny: smiles sweetly and thinks "well duh".

Um, uh, what shall I say...it never seems inappropriate to praise the grandparents.

02 October 2005

Fleeting Fall

Of course it's October everywhere and the entire Northern hemisphere is enjoying the Autumn season, but I couldn't resist adding my few pics worth. What with the glorious weather and colors (that the photos don't come close to doing justice to) it feels just opulant. So, come on everybody! Enjoy! It doesn't last long.

01 October 2005

River Walk

Here are some pics from the river today. I wasn't going to post them but Jason came over and cropped and photo-shopped them to bring out the color better.

28 September 2005

This happened a few summers ago

While DH was building a garage in the back yard a pair of robins built a nest in the rafters. He tried to work on the other side of the building so as not to disturb him. But they didn't seem to mind him around at all. Even after the baby hatched. (One egg didn't make it-I didn't want to mention it until the M twins were out of danger.) Boy, that baby was loud. I had previously believed that baby birds were noisy to get the parent's attention and thus the food ahead of their siblings. Wrong!! That baby sounded like a nest full. It was something to see the parents take care of the nest and the baby. Both of them brought food and took turns being on guard. The best part was when the mama pushed the baby out to a branch. There he sat for a couple days having song-bird lessons. She brought a berry to feed him if he "talked right". She sat beside him and said "ch-e-e-p chirp chirp chirp". The poor baby would try to copy her but could only get out a small "peep". After several times of her demonstrating what to do and him getting it wrong, he finally managed a "peep PEEP", and she gave him the berry. After she flew off he sat on the branch quietly practicing his chirping. I know it sounds amazing but this is exactly how it happened. I think she was hiding him from other birds because she never approached the branch directly. She would climb up the trunk to him. Also, no more squawking. He stayed pretty quiet and still - except for a little peep practicing. After a couple days on the branch she took him for a flying lesson. I would have expected that to have a couple false starts but she just took off to the sky and he followed. They soared away and never came back. Do all baby robins do that? Or, is ours just advanced?

19 September 2005

Sweet and Sour Gluten

Since I recently sent Mama Bird my recipe for gluten (that's 밀 고 기 for those of you in the Korean blogosphere) I decided to show a pic of some I recently did up for a potluck. Personally I don't even much like the stuff. I'd much prefer 두부 (that's "tofu" for those of you not in the Korean blogosphere) for a vegetarian protein alternative. But, I have to admit, when I send it off to one of Jeanne's vegan get-togethers, not a bite of it comes home. Folks can't seem to get enough of it. They call me up at home and ask for it. So, get busy Mama Bird. I know you have some vegetarian social obligations to attend. Do NOT bother trying this on the OC. Guarantee he won't like it either.

17 September 2005

The Harvest Moon

Happy Korean Thanksgiving

We went to my sister-in-law's tonight for a family gathering to celebrate Chuseok or, Korean Thanksgiving. It corresponds with the Harvest Moon.

For anyone interested in learning more about the Harvest Moon. http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2000/ast11sep_2.htm

Special thanks to the blog of Space Nakji for this address to "Chuseok".

The picture is of some of the traditional food we had tonight. That is my arm in the photo. I asked MyungJa what I could do to help. She suggested I put out serving chopsticks and right then was when Jason snapped the pic.

15 September 2005

Almost purple

For some reason our backyard grapes aren't getting ripe as fast as normal this year. But, enough of this purple blogging. You know, it's supposed to be the color of insanity.

Crazy purple!

(But, those grapes should be purpler by now. Something's wrong-dreadfully wrong)

I did NOT escape. I am on a DAY PASS!

14 September 2005

More Purple

This purple rock somehow managed to travel home with me from the Death Valley trip that has been previously posted about on this blog (see archives). I had never seen a purple rock. Now I can almost believe purple mountains exist-as in "for purple mountain magesty" etc. We didn't see any purple mountains.

10 September 2005

The Color purple

OK, here are some pics from our adventures today that I took. I know they are just weeds but I am really taken with these purplish plants.

A Walk in the Desert

It was a perfect day for walking. Not too cloudy and not too sunny. Blue skies get a little old around here. A few clouds are really appreciated. For two reasons: keeps too much sun from getting all over the body and in the eyes, and, the patches of sun and shadow bring out a subtle difference in the desert colors which is fascinating due to it's very rarity. We ended up taking two walks in the desert hills near our home. Since I am a sucker for desert flowers the DH took many photos with his camera. I took pics with mine too but will have to post them later since it is now re-charging. Take a good look at that last yellow flower (sorry, don't know their names). When he was taking that picture a bee got rustled up. The cheeky thing showed it's disturbance by buzzing at both our heads-one after another, in turn. He wasn't posing for a photo op either. I regret to say that I took a swat at him with my hat but missed. Regret that I took a swing, not the miss. Let him be. It's his flower anyway. The wildlife has had to find ever distant back-country since the neighborhoods are being built up further and further into the desert, encroaching on their territory. We used to see deer up there all the time and once I got within 30 feet of a coyote. Scared him good. We see less owls, eagles and hawks than previous years. Of course, there is a bright side. Less rattlers and black widows too!

07 September 2005

More Cousins

These little cuties are my grandnieces. They are 4 year old cousins. They visited us during the labor day weekend.

30 August 2005


Cousin Hee-Hoon from Detroit came to visit Halmoni and Hadaboji for a couple days. I think we were able to show him a good time. He had never jet-ski'd and he seemed to enjoy it. Jeanne's daddy was commenting on what a sweet natured kid Hee-Hoon always was. I'm sure that's true. He should know. But, it has also been my experience that many Korean people have a cultural graciousness and hospitableness about them that Westerners find attractive. And, in general, my husband's cousins are the very embodiment of that trait. Nice to have rellies that do you proud.

29 August 2005

Second Place Trophy

The softball season is over. Our team took second place. I use the term "our" loosely since I am not actually ON the team. But, I did have to play as an alternate a couple times this year. The final night of the season was last night. It was a situation where all the ramaining contenders had to play game after game until teams dropped out of the running. The first game of the evening started at 5:20 PM. The final game ended at 11:40 PM. It was 5 games straight through with no break. If we had won one more game we'd have taken first place. Some of the college aged crowd had their first day of the new semester this morning so I don't suppose any of them started school real rested. Anyway, since Mr. Sunny is the team captain our family was blessed with taking the trophy home. One year in the past we took first place and got T-shirts. I remember it because I played in only one game that entire season-the final one-which got me a team shirt.

06 August 2005

We Don't Play ALL the Time

But as much as possible. Last summer when we were camping Mr. Sunny made a new pal. The deer around there were pretty used to humans but he was the only human we saw around there get chummy enough with one to feed it by hand and pat it's neck.

29 July 2005

To clarify

The picture in the previous post was not Lake Tahoe. It is low tide at a State beach in Northern California and that is a large piece of redwood drift-wood reflecting.

THIS is Lake Tahoe with Jackie in it.

24 July 2005

Ready to Regale

Jackie and I hit the road. We've been to Lake Tahoe. She had been there before and really loved it. Weather was perfect. We kayaked and swam. We also took a trip to the northern California coast. She had never been there and she loved that too. It really is spectacular. We saw too much good stuff to even describe it all.

Things went a little downhill from there. We had planned to take out the boat but the frame of the boat trailer broke right at the bar that hooks to the hitch. Fortunately it happened while the boat was already in the water as I was pulling up the launch to park. If it had happened while driving to the lake on the interstate.. I shudder to think what might have happened. Of course, then there was the problem of getting the boat back out of the lake without a usable trailer. But, the father of the Jo children managed to patch up the trailer (no surprise there!) by drilling holes in strips of flat metal and bolting it to the frame where he had also drilled holes. This required going home to get supplies. We ended up having to leave the boat in the water and the trailer in the parking lot overnight but everything is home safe and sound now. This is Jackie's last night here and we have not decided what to do tomorrow. Blog you later.

16 July 2005

2nd Death Valley Trip 2005

The first time I went to Death Valley this year DH could not join me. Accidently it had worked out that he was actually in Las Vegas at the same time I was. And we got to spend quite a bit of time together. But, he was there on University business, so was not able to explore around with me during the day. Since the flowers were quite a well-publicized sensation this year and everyone was saying it might be a once in a life-time opportunity - we took a separate, second (this time by car) trip to the area to see what there was to see.

I already mentioned in a previous post that the flower spectacle was due to the tragic flooding in Southern California during the winter. The other unusual thing the heavy rainfall caused was AMAZING amounts of water in Death Valley. To my understanding the stinky puddle at Badwater (lowest point in continental USA) is called "Lake" Manly. This year it was a huge "puddle" spanning miles of desert floor. Deep enough in spots that some folks floated canoes and kayaks in it. The floor of the puddle is salt crystals. At some places (Devil's Golf Course for one) the salt crystals floated on top of the water. The pics are of my hand, my feet, and cute little kids enjoying the salt and water.

11 July 2005

More desert pics

When I flew to Vegas to visit my sweet little Jae-Min and her dear Mama and Daddy, I took the opportunity to strike off on my own and do a little desert hiking in the incredible and amazing Red Rock Canyon and Valley of Fire State Parks. Please go to both of them if you ever get a chance. It's amazing that Red Rock is within 15 miles of a major metropolitian area like Las Vegas and yet you feel a million miles away. Same with Valley of Fire but you are more like an hour from the city. I am so thankful that these are protected areas. For that reason I did not mind the entrance fees. However, I am sure if I lived local I'd be finding a way to sneak in. I really love, but respect, the desert. I love the refreshing fragrance and feel of the dry air-especially high dry air, the lack of mosquitos, sky-scapes, the interplay of sun and shadow on the rocks and mountains, alpine glow, the way it cools off at night, the way the plants look different depending on the time of day and how the sun is shining on them, and, just being in an allergen free (for me) environment. I respect the heat, the way it cools off at night, the need for water, the need for preparedness, the intense sunshine, rattle snakes, black widow spiders, the potential for flash floods and other storms. Yes, that's water coming off that rock in the above pic. In fact the day I was there they were warning about flash floods. Didn't see one.

10 July 2005

Roadside Poppies

I did see this
March 2005
Near Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve
Lancaster, California

No, I did not actually see this

This is from http://www.desertusa.com/wildflo/wildupdates.html

I'm no wildflower expert, don't even know the names of them, but, I enjoyed following the wildflower happenings on this site all spring. Here in the desert it is usually barren. But, occasionally, if weather conditions are just right, there is a "wildflower spring". Then all the desert wildflower afficionados flock out to the remote places to see them. This year there were many postings on the above mentioned desert wildflower site about various trips folks were taking, and the quantity and quality of blooms they saw. I actually got out for two trips before it was over. Saw Death Valley twice in March, once with my grand-niece and her mom, and once with my husband. Also got over to the Antelope Valley poppy reserve, which was nice, but the poppies have been decreasing there over the years because the state of California wants to keep it "natural" and poppies need some cultivation. Off the reserve you can see better poppies in fields where sheep graze providing natural cultivation. Also, the poppies are larger along the roadways where incidental cultivation is provided by trucks kicking up pebbles as they drive by.

09 July 2005


Recently I had opportunity to escort my in-laws to a Korean language NEWSTART style program held in the beautiful Sorak Mountains National Park in The Republic of Korea. The above picture is me with my in-laws and my cousin KeumHee with her in-laws. We all attended together. Those two good-looking gals in the center are sisters. They undoubtedly would like to know which of them you think is prettier. And if you have a lick of sense you will say that they are equal.

For those not familiar with the NEWSTART concept, it is a program for learning and putting into practical application natural health remedies, such as:

N utrition
E xercise
W ater
S unlight
T emperance
A ir
R est
T rust

And, the patient gets a "new start."