AmericaFest Countdown Begins Now! (Update)

ImageAmericaFest will be taking off this weekend, lasting from Saturday 28th through Sunday 29! The 28th AmericaFest, located on Kadena will be available only for military personnel and SOFA status dependents, we are expecting 30,000 to 50,000 people to takeover the Flighline! Sunday 29th AmericaFest will be literally open to everyone and their moms, including military personnel, their dependents and the Okinawans!

The next few days volunteers, vendors, etc. will be preparing the Flightline for tons of fun including food, drinks, bouncy houses for children, and more! The fireworks will go off on Sunday 29!

3 Doors Down will be a headline! Don’t recognize them? Check them out here!


For your convenience there will be shuttles coming from these places on Kadena, if you live off base just park your cars in the parking lots near these areas and the shuttles will take you the rest of the way.  Below are the Shuttle pick up times and location for Saturday and Sunday:

Shuttle Schedule: Saturday, 28 June

Locations
• Kadena Elementary School 
• Rocker NCO Club 
• Olympic Mall 
• Exchange Drive-Thru ATM (shuttles every 30 minutes)

First pick-up at 2:40 pm 
Shuttles arrive every 20 minutes 
Last pick-up at 7:40 pm 
Express drop-off begins at 8:45 pm

Shuttle Schedule: Sunday, 29 June

Locations
• Kadena Elementary School 
• Rocker NCO Club 
• Olympic Mall 
• Chibana Golf Course

First pick-up at 12:40 pm 
Shuttles arrive every 20 minutes 
Last pick-up at 7:40 pm 
Express drop-off begins at 8:45 pm

Also important to note is what you can and can not take on the buses including: 

 “Please leave backpacks, banners, signs, cans, glass bottles, coolers, alcoholic beverages, camera lenses 300mm or greater, narcotics, firearms, knives, explosives or any other weapons or items that could be perceived as a weapon. Diaper bags and small purses will be allowed.”

For more information about AmericaFest visit this website: Kadenas AmericaFest 2014

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Arm Candy: Michael Kors Purse

Arm Candy: Michael Kors Purse

Michael Kors takes the win for arm candy of the week! I have become obsessed with MK almost over night (well since my first purchase). This beauty right here is on sale for 178 at the Exchange on Kadena. Too bad I am a college student attempting to save money over the summer. It is so hard with all the summer deals on clothes and arm candy such as this one!

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Beach Day is Fun Day: Azama Beach

Beach Day is Fun Day: Azama Beach

Azama Beach in Nanjo City. It is quiet and family friendly, my high school best friend and I took a tour here through Kadena ITT and it was absolutely beautiful and amazing. The water is extremely clear, feels clean and Nanjo City has a gorgeous scenery. It is 30 minutes away from Kadena. It is worth the visit to have some fun in the sun on the sandy shores of Azama Beach.

Rant: Finally Soft Hair

For those of us living in Okinawa I know you have to understand the pains we go through to control the poofy, dry, rained on hair given to us by Mother Nature on this island. The humidity doesn’t help with this situation at all, the humidity here is worst than the humidity in Jacksonville, NC. I have yet to wear my hair straight and down without it retracting into a big poof ball on my head. Not only that but the conditioners shipped here do not even help to soften my curly hair texture.

ImageFor example, my main hair conditioner is Herbal Essenes: Long Term Relationship; it comes in a red bottle, big or small, back in the States this is my go to conditioner. Normally it leaves my hair feeling soft, clean and moisturize, but since purchasing this same product here on the island my hair has felt anything but. I was afraid to use any of the conditioners I bought for fear of my hair becoming too hard. I could not even begin to detangle my hair under running water like I would normally do. So as you would expect my hair was a tangled mess and because I am new to the island I could not exactly go to a hair salon for a quick fix. You may be wondering what I have been doing to my hair if I haven’t been detangling or conditioning. I just opted for using the tap water and some coconut oil for moisture; however this did not last long since I wasn’t detangling my hair.

So it left me with two questions.. is it the water making my hair hard or is the conditioner not getting the job done?

Tonight I tried something different, it is apparent I have to change my hair regimen here in Okinawa, so I went back to the kitchen and started experimenting with my oils again!

I mixed my extra virgin coconut oil with my virgin Avocado oil, (you can find these products at your local grocery store or you can purchase it online at this website mountainroseherbs.com) next I added my Herbal Essence: Long Term Relationship to the mixture.

Coconut Oil, Avocado Oil and HE:LTR

Coconut Oil, Avocado Oil and HE:LTR

This mixture was a blessing, it was exactly what I needed to tame my naturally, curly locs.

Meet my waves. haha

Meet my waves.

This is what I have to work with.. plus the humidity.

This is what I have to work with.. plus the humidity.

I applied the mixture to my hair, took my bath and WA-LA it was soft enough for me to detangle my curls and place in my braids. I have never been so happy.

 

 

I hoped this helped some of my curly haired beauties out here on the island, or in general!

Talk Dirty to Me: Exfoliation

Hello hope everyone’s summer days are going as planned, with nights out under the stars at the beach or on a camping trip. Summer is dawning in on us, meaning the summer sun is also heating up. While it is important to remember to wear sunscreen in the day to protect our everlasting youth, it is also important to prep our skins at night through exfoliation.

Why is it important to exfoliate again?

Exfoliation is a main component to keeping the skin feeling soft and looking youthful by shedding the dead skin on top allowing a new layer to surface. If you have blemished or oily exfoliating your skin can help unclog your pores to allow your skin to breath to prevent future blemishes. 

I, myself have oily skin, exfoliating is apart of my weekly skin care regimen. Over time it has brightened my skin tone giving me a glow. I follow up with a virgin oil such as olive oil or coconut oil. These items can be found in your kitchen or at your local grocery store.

Now, why is it important to use exfoliation in the summer?

During the summer, we tend to be out in the sun a lot. Either at the beach or at the local park with friends. Our skin is more prone to drying out and becoming damaged from prolong sun-abuse (haha). As stated above I have oily skin, but if I stay out in the sun for too long my face will feel rough and dry.

When you exfoliate your skin during the summer months make sure to exfoliate at night. Why? If you exfoliate in the morning only to go outside and play with the sun-rays you are actually causing damage to your newly formed skin cells, which could cause a aging look to the skin.

Take a look at what skin-problems exfoliating can take care of:

BLEMISHED SKIN

Exfoliation will destroy acne-causing bacteria,but it could possibly dry out the skin. Make sure to follow up with your favorite moisturizer.

POST-BREAKOUT RED/DARK MARKS

Often, the real concern is not so much the actual blemishes, but rather the red, dark marks that remain on the skin long after the breakout has healed. The key to fading those post-breakout marks is to increase your exfoliation. The more you remove the surface damaged skin tissue, the more you are ridding the skin of the dark marks and encouraging the formation of new healthy (non-scarred) skin tissue. The result is more even-toned skin with less scarring.

CLOGGED PORES

Clogged pores aren’t infected blemishes, but rather blackheads, small whiteheads, and little clogged bumps on the skin, often in the T-Zone. The same rules apply as with blemished skins. The more you remove surface dry skin cells the less oil will stay trapped and congested in the pores.

HYPERPIGMENTATION

These are the brown spots that come from age, pregnancy, hormonal changes, and genetics. These spots tend to become more apparent and darker as the skin ages. Exfoliation is beneficial for breaking up the pigmented cells to allow them to fade.

DRY SKIN

Especially in the winter, exfoliation is very important. So often when the skin is dry, we tend to load up on heavier creams to compensate for the dryness. But dry skin means you have dry skin cell buildup. Increase your exfoliation to remove the dry skin cells, and then moisturize the new skin cells, resulting in a moister skin.

How often should you exfoliate?

If I stick by my skin care regimen, I only exfoliate once or twice a week.  But depending on your skin tone, you may need to exfoliate more or less than that. It is completely up to you.

Exfoliating the skin, whether the body or face, can be quite inexpensive. If you take a look at your kitchen cabinet you can find the ingredients you need to exfoliate your skin in an cheap and quick way.

Here is my homemade exfoliation treatment:

Brown Sugar

Olive Oil.. but lately Coconut Oil and Avocado Oil (you can find them here mountainroseherbs.com or at your local whole foods store)

Just mix about a ounce or more of brown sugar (depending on how much sugar you need) with as much oil as you need..rub them together and then gently rub the mixture in a circular motion on your face.

Ecotools Dual-Side Loofah

This is the loofah side.

The soft side for lathering your favorite face wash.

The soft side for lathering your favorite face wash.

Another way I found was just as quick, easy and inexpensive was using the Ecotools dual-side face loofah. One side is soft for lathering up your fave soap wash and the other side is the loofah, for gentle exfoliation. It has become one of my favorite staples in my regimen and it only cost me less than 2 bucks. You can find it in any of your local supermarkets.

 Ecotools has always been one of my favorite brands. I am a noob at makeup, but when I do put some foundation on I use the Ecotools makeup brushes. In general their brand is cheap and environmental friendly, which is another big plus.

 Have a nice summer in the sun!

 

 

 

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Okinawa: Shuri Castle

Okinawa: Shuri Castle

Built in the 14th century the Shuri Castle located in Naha, Okinawa attracts hundreds of tourist. It was the palace of the Ryukyu Kingdom; it was almost completely destroyed during the Battle of Okinawa and rebuilt during 1992. Since then it has been designated a national treasure.

It is definitely on my list of places to visit while in Okinawa and should have a special spot on your list.

Homemade Samosa

This homemade traditional Indian food called Samosa originated in the Middle East and made its rounds into India, Africa and other areas around the world. In India it is sold on the side of the streets, served either vegetarian or with meat. It is normally served with a side of chutney, 

This homemade, traditional Indian recipe is brought to us by Padhus Kitchen, her recipe is simple, easy and can be made at home in your kitchen:

Traditional Samosa Recipe with Potato filling
Prep time – under 20 mins
Cook time – under 30 mins
Yields- approximately 10-12 samosas

Ingredients needed for samosa:
All purpose flour/ maida – 1 cup
Carom seeds / Ajwain  /omam – 1/4 tsp (optional)
Oil – 1 tbsp
Salt – approx 1/2 tsp

Method 
In a bowl mix together all purpose flour, salt and oil nicely with your finger tips.The flour should be well mixed with the oil. This is done to get crispy samosas.

Then add carom seeds, water little at a time and make a stiff dough.

Cover it with a damp cloth (to prevent it from drying) and let the dough rest for 20 minutes. In the meantime we will prepare the stuffing.

Ingredients for potato filling
Onion – 1
Green chilli -1
Ginger – 1/2 inch piece
Potato – 3 medium size
Coriander leaves – few (optional)
Chilli powder -1 tsp
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Coriander powder -1 tsp
Cumin powder -1/2 tsp
Lemon juice to taste

For the seasoning
Oil – 1 tbsp
Cumin seeds/jeera seeds -1 tsp

Preparation

Pressure cook potatoes, peel the skin and cut it into cubes or mash it slightly.

Finely chop onions, ginger and green chilli.

Method

Heat oil in a kadai/pan, add jeera seeds, when it sizzles, add onions, ginger, green chillies and saute until onions turn transparent.

Then add coriander powder, turmeric powder, chilli powder, cumin powder and salt needed. Mix well, cook for 2-3 minutes.

Add cubed potatoes, coriander leaves and mix well. Switch off the flame.

Add few drops of lemon juice to taste. Now our potato stuffing is ready.

samosa dough and potato filling

We will proceed to prepare the samosas –

What you need – oil for deep frying samosas

Make balls from the dough depending on the size of samosas needed. If you want a small samosa, make a small ball and a slightly bigger ball for a bigger samosa.

 

Now take a ball of dough and roll it out very thinly in an oval or round shape. You do not have to be too perfect. Cut it into half as shown in the picture below.

 

Traditional samosa preparation

 

Now wet the straight side with little water using your finger tips.

Fold it in such a way that you get a cone (see picture below). First bring one edge to the center, then bring the other edge and place it overlapping the first. Now you will get a cone as shown below.

 

making samosa

Fill the cone with potato stuffing. See to it that you fill even the tip of the cone.

Now wet the circumference of the cone with water using your finger tips for sticking.

Stick together and fold it. If there is excess length at the back, you can make a pleat (see first pic below) and then fold it to form a triangle. Make it sit and shape it nicely. You can make a design using a fork.(see picture below)

How to make samosa

Now repeat the same process for the rest of the dough. All the samosas are sitting (pic below) waiting to be fried in oil.

Now heat oil in a kadai. To check if the oil is hot enough, drop a small piece of dough into the oil, if it raises to the surface immediately, then the oil is hot enough to fry the samosas.

Now reduce the flame to medium and maintain the same oil temperature throughout frying. Drop 2-3 samosas into the oil gently and fry both sides until golden brown.

Fry the rest of the samosas in the same way.

potato samosa

Thanks to Padhus Kitchen you can make homemade samosa like they do in India on the side of the road. Enjoy.

For more delicious meal like this follow this link to Padhus Kitchen: www.padhuskitchen.com/