Monday, December 28, 2009

The North Shore

We took GG and Sherry up to the North Shore to show them what it looks like up there.

Amazingly, there were ten turtles laying out on the beach. I have never seen more than three or four at a time. Maybe the turtles wanted to come out and see us as much as we wanted to see them.

There was also a good bit of surfing going on. The waves have been kicking up a tad, making for some really good surfing. We sat there for the longest time, just watching the surfers wipe out.

And enjoying the fabulous view.

And enjoying the fabulous weather.

Who misses snow?

That's One Happy Dog

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas Morning

We were awakened by a beautiful serenade.

Much better than having them run in screaming.

Kerry got the coffee maker he's wanted for years............

As well as a fancy new grill (we're spoiling him).

For some reason, Kerry gave Ben "Sting" a sword from the Lord of the Rings. When Kerry showed it to me, I just saw a small sword. He was astounded that I didn't recognize it as an exact replica of "Sting".

"Will Ben know it's a specific sword?" I asked.

Kerry looked at me as if I was crazy. "Of course! It's Sting!!!"

Christmas morning, Ben unwrapped the sword. "It's Sting!! How cool!"

I would love to know what Katie had just spotted in this picture.

Don't eat those magnets.
(The company that makes these is being sued by parents whose children ate the magnets.)

Okay, I was worried Katie was about to knock my coffee over.

And then the women of the house cooked, cleaned and read instruction manuals while the males read their gift books and ate beef jerky for breakfast.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Eve

Ben played Joseph in the Christmas skit.

Emily was an angel - although apparently she'd been bad and her halo had been revoked. Katie was a sheep.

She really likes the glo-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-rias.

When else can you just sing on and on without someone telling you to hush?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

First Stop: Dole Pineapple Plantation

I've written about Dole Plantation before, so I won't put you through a full description of it all again.

GG had been to Dole when she was here before, but since this was Sherry's first visit, we couldn't let her leave the island without visiting pineapple heaven.

Katie, Sherry, and Emily.

The grounds are beautiful there.

Of course, we took a ride on the Pineapple Express.

Kerry is enjoying having some time off!

I think he's gone native........

The famous pineapple whip!

Emily Does The Hula

Emily danced a Christmas Hula at our church last week.

The gourd is called an "epu". It is a traditional implement in hula. The girls tap out a beat on it.

The sticks are called "puili sticks". They are made of bamboo and are also used to tap out a rhythm.

Ben calls them "Emily's Angry Sticks" because when Emily is practicing with them and concentrating, she looks angry.

The hula was beautiful! All the girls had matching skirts and leis and they did a wonderful job!

I was so proud!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

GG and Sherry Visit Hawaii

My mother and sister have arrived to spend Christmas in Hawaii!

Welcome to Hawaii!!

Amazingly, they did not intend to dress alike for the plane trip, or even realize that they had dressed alike until I pointed it out.

We wore our most festive chapeaus to the airport to pick them up.....

The kids have always called my mother "GG" (for Glorious Grandmother) and my sister "She-She". Her name is Sherry, and when they were little the kids couldn't pronounce her name so they called her She-She.

We could never have foreseen that one day we would be living in Hawaii where the word "she-she" is a euphemism for using the bathroom - as in, "I have to go she-she", or "Did you just she-she in your pants?"

So I've had to re-train the kids to call her "Aunt Sherry" because calling out "Aunt She-She" across a crowded store is going to sound bad.

It's a shame too, because GG and She-She really rolls off the tongue well.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Beauty Is In The Dollar Sign

Emily and I were shopping the other day when I spotted a really cute shirt hanging on the rack.

"Oh, look at that! Isn't that beautiful?" I exclaimed.

"Oh, it's gorgeous!" Emily agreed.

"Wow! It's seventy-two dollars!" I said.

"Look at that, it just got ugly," Emily replied.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jog

Kerry's home! Yesterday was very intense and exciting.

See this giant wall of netting and signs? Our soldiers were on the other side of it. We were in an airplane hangar, and they hung this curtain up so we could not see them. We knew they were over there, mere feet from us, but couldn't get to them.

Talk about nerve wracking.

We discussed possible scenarios in which we ran toward the curtain, scaled the hangar walls, or shimmied across the overhead pipes to get past the (armed) guards and get to the other side.

But we ended up just sitting in our folding chairs.

Someone very kindly set up a video camera on the side where the soldiers were and a screen on the side where the families were. The camera panned across the room and occasionally we would see Kerry amongst the other soldiers as they in-processed and turned in their weapons.

They were given a quick briefing. "Don't beat your wife" was the main theme.

Finally, finally, they lined them up and marched them in to our side of the hangar.

A quick two minute speech later, and he was ours.

(And yes, I let the kids get to him first this time.)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Riding The Big One

The big waves have come to town.

Winter in Hawaii means big waves on the North Shore. However, a storm out in the Pacific has created even bigger waves than normal. The local news is reporting that waves this large have not been seen here in ten years!

*Thanks to my friend Lia for these fabulous shots. She has a camera that looks like the Hubble Telescope and gets great close-ups!

The Billabong Pipeline Masters surfing competition was supposed to begin today, but the waves were too big.

However, this cleared the way for another famous surfing competition- "The Eddie" - in which the waves must be at least 20 feet high. This competition is in memory of local legend Eddie Aikau - a well-know surfer and life-guard with hundreds of saves to his credit.

In 1978, Eddie Aikau was on a 30-day sailing voyage when the double hulled canoe he was on developed a leak and capsized. After ten hours in the water, Aikau convinced the captain to let him paddle off on his surfboard to try to get help. Another ten hours later, the boat was spotted and the 15-member crew was rescued. Eddie Aikau was never seen again. You often see bumper stickers and signs here which read, "Eddie Would Go" - a reference that when no one else would brave going into dangerous water to help others, Eddie would go.

The traffic up around Waimea Bay was horrendous.

There were people everywhere and cars parked in every available space.Look at all those people and cars crammed along the guard rail looking down into the bay.

We went to a beach a little farther along where we were able to get out and watch the waves.

Then we headed up the closest mountain and headed down a trail where we could see the surfers from up high. It was really a fabulous experience to know that this was a rare event and we were getting to see it!

Now I'm home, watching close up shots on the web cam.

One lifeguard told us, "The only people out there now are the really good surfers and the stupid people."

I think that about sums it up.