The Excitement Heightens in 2012 Part III: Adventure Awaits in a Small Island Called Okinawa, Sniff Kisses and Girl Scout Cookies

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Japan and Back: Okinawa Here We Come!

Last week, Gabriel received his military orders to report on the island of Okinawa. It is a nostalgic news, 10 years ago, we were newly married - we started our journey in Yokosuka, Japan.  A little over three years after, we were in San Diego.

Our tour in Yokosuka, Japan was the start of our married life.  It has its ups and downs just like any other marriages, we have had travel adventures, and met wonderful people who became our lifelong friends.  We enjoyed our time in Japan for the first time by immersing ourselves in the culture, snowboarded all over the snow resorts in the mainland, climbed Mt Fuji, and enjoyed the local fare.  When it was time to go, we opened our minds to going back to continental US.
San Diego, CA was unexpectedly extended to an almost 7 year tour.  I think it was all in perfect timing - Gabe being able to attend Independent Duty Corpsman School, me finishing my 2nd Master's, and the birth of Elise.  We could have not asked for a PERFECT TIMING. 

Now that we are going back to Japan, we have mixed feelings.  I guess there are more factors to consider now...Lala (the dog), Elise's daycare (Mrs. Tunisia Simon and her staff from Little Angels are heaven sent to our Little Elise), family, and of course the comforts being stateside.  Nevertheless, we are keeping an open mind.  I am sure our next adventure of Japan and back will be something truly worthwhile for our little family.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Sniff Kisses from Momma and Dada

You may be wondering what are sniff kisses?  As a young child, I remember grandma's and grandpa's and on some occasions aunts and uncles giving me a sniff kiss on top of my head or on the cheeks.  I never paid much attention to it until I have - Elise.

I usually pepper her with sniff kisses every time I drop and pick her up from the daycare.  Whenever I wish to express my affection towards her and her baby smell is THE BEST.  Even my husband Gabe, I began noticing him giving sniff kisses to Elise particularly now that Elise is a little older at 11 months.  She tries to squirm around more but she has her moments when she loves to cuddle and just stay in my arms.

So what is a sniff kiss?  Here's what I found from  Mr. Peter Dickinson's blog:

The Thai name for the Sniff Kiss is 'Hawm Kaem' which translates as 'sweet smell cheek'. In the West it the nearest equivalent would be perhaps called a 'Sister Kiss' only it is not actually the same. Sniff Kissing is the norm in Thailand and over much of Asia.
The Eskimos do not, as is popularily believed, rub noses but actually sniff cheeks.
There is apparently a famous Sniff Kiss between Mulder and Skully of the X-Files.
I hear you asking about X-files? Yes...during my college years we would gather at one of my dormmate's room with a tiny portable TV and watch X-Files every Monday at 9 pm....those were the simple times of college life.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Girl Scout Cookies

Each year the Girl Scouts (leadership organization for girls) sell cookies to raise funds for their local scouting units.  I for one is a Girls Scout (yes, and will always be)...started as a twinkler in Kindergarten and on to high school.  The organization taught me life skills that I will not learn from the four corners of a classroom.  As I grew older and became jaded, whenever I see the girl scouts in front of grocery stores...man, I try to avoid making eye contact, pretend I am fishing for something from my purse, pretend I am talking on my cellphone, geez name all the pretend things I did just to dodge buying cookies.  I must say, whenever I am caught and I have pangs of guilt, my faves are Dulce de Leche and Tag Alongs.

Gabe, my husband, brought me back to the real cause...a couple of days ago he went to the nearby barber shop for his regular haircut and when he came back he had a box of Girl Scout cookies on hand.  Mockingly, I said "Girl Scout cookies!?" He replied with a smile on his face "Yeah, I have to remember that I have a daughter..." OOOhhh that hit me straight to the softest spot of my heart.