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Archive for February, 2012


Aloha, we’re back!

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Rambutan, Food of the Gods


View from the porch, Kilauea

Island Girl and her Ukelele Video.

We returned from a wonderful trip 1 week trip to Kauai. This was my third trip to Kauai, the first trip was 10 years ago. I love the low key, laid back atmosphere. Our family rented a lovely oceanview house I found on vrbo and it was a great value. Let me know if you want more details! There were lovely unobstructed views in the front and backyard, and a mama and baby Kauai rooster on the property. Funnily enough, there was a young couple renting the guesthouse on the property and they came over and introduced themselves thanking me for renting their lovely room. Then, I also had a woman asking me why Ni’ihau shells were found on the beach this time of year, and I said, “I have no clue, but can I see what they look like?” I must fit right in, or they felt compelled to ask the only Asian person they’d seen on the Northeast side of the island!

The 25 knot winds were a bit much, I must say this was the worst weather we experienced in Hawaii, but it still beat the weather here, which is difficult! It made for some good kite flying, but not so great snorkeling. Our entire family almost got blown over into Waimea Canyon. It was really scary, but hysterical at the same time. We tried out some new places, like Bar Acuda in Hanalei, which was highly recommended by one of my patients who lived on Kauai for many years, Kalypso in Hanalei, and Common Ground in Kilauea, which is kind of an outdoor Urth Caffe on an organic farm. We also had a great meal at Brennecke’s in Poipu. I had wished for a meal without the kids, but alas, it still wasn’t in the cards! We were hoping to catch a good show while we were there. The first time we went, we lucked out and saw a Natalie Merchant show. But mainly at night I learned all of the cool apps that I could download for the kids on the Ipad from my pseudo stepson. That alone was priceless. My girls loved their new ukelele (click on the video…Watch out, Don Ho!)

The week did not exactly start off relaxing, as I thought that I had forgotten my contact lenses and makeup and my dog was having issues at the kennel. I found a high prescription snorkel mask to rent, gave up on looking remotely decent and took care of my dog issues via phone. We were 8 miles from the nearest grocery, so I cooked a lot of meals with local, organic ingredients we picked up at various daily farmer’s markets. Of course, at the end of our trip, I found my contacts and makeup. That’s what I get for taking care of everyone but myself! Verdure sunscreen prevented everyone from burning. I’m running out of inventory, so look out for a new version next year.

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Happy Valentine’s Day! Ahhh, how the meaning of this holiday has changed over the years! My children have made Valentine’s Day fun again. It was so sweet to see the joy in their faces when I had them distribute valentines to everyone in the office. There is plenty of time to give them cynical stories (like when my new boyfriend took me out to a French restaurant and criticized me for ordering a Cabernet, for God’s sake, why didn’t I order a Bordeaux?! Red flag!!) Love between adults is all rainbows and puppies at first, but the meaning and gravity of love is so complex (or when, as my mom says, “the romance dies” which I must say is pretty much true!)

These girls are the loves of my life. I am so blessed and glad that I prioritized becoming a mom and didn’t give up on the dream. The most trying experience of my life, but the most joyful and meaningful. Everything else is just icing on the cake! My job taking care of patients is so much easier than being a mom of multiples, but I love that I am able to love and do both.

Have a great day!

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Skin cancer, the gift that keeps on giving

Saturday, February 4th, 2012

…well at least it’s not genital warts (see previous post). Once you get a skin cancer, unfortunately, you often will get more. The younger you are when you get one, the more likely you will have more in your lifetime. Almost everyone we treat with Mohs surgery has had a previous skin cancer elsewhere. It is important to prevent skin cancer in the first place by avoiding prolonged sun exposure and practicing common sense sun protection. Does that mean you have to be a recluse? No, but purposefully sunbathing is not very smart.

An experienced dermatologist can often recognize a skin cancer in its earliest stages, though every dermatologist has missed something at some point in their careers. (And if they claim they have not, they are big fat liars!). Therefore, we rely on patients to do their own self exam and observe any suspicious lesions for changes in color, shape, size and border, and to come in for periodic exams. Don’t let anyone freeze any lesions more than once without discussing the possibility of a biopsy for any persistent or recurrent lesion. The person that set the record in my office for the longest time spent in Mohs surgery in one day was a celebrity in his 40’s who had had a lesion frozen twice with two different dermatologists. He pulled through wonderfully and took it very well considering, but we were both dumbfounded at the extent that this tumor had grown.

I love what I do and I get the most satisfaction from educating my patients on their skin lesions and skin cancer, but I would rather not be cutting off parts of your nose, eyelids, lips, etc for your sake. Preventative care is really important.

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