Friday, November 28, 2008

Hawai'i: A Photo Synopsis

Tyrel listed the following as his favorite things about our Hawaii trip:

  1. Pearl Harbor and the USS Missouri (aka Mighty Mo).
  2. Polynesian Cultural Center (he got to drink coconut juice and loved the fire dancer).
  3. The Dole Pineapple Plantation (the world’s biggest maze in 2001).
  4. USS Bowfin (aka the Pearl Harbor Avenger).
  5. Beach Activities (Snorkeling, Body Boarding, Catching crabs).

    Erin rattled off her own top five list too:

    1. Swimming in the ocean.
    2. Airplane Ride (she slept nearly the entire flight to Hawaii. Amy and I weren’t so lucky on our return trip).
    3. Tending Cache and Clay.
    4. Learning the Hula at the Polynesian Cultural Center.
    5. The baby pineapples growing at the Dole Pineapple Plantation.

    Amy gave her fave's about our trip too:

    1. Without question she loved the WEATHER.
    2. Being with family and close friends (nothing more HAD to be done).
    3. All the different beaches on O'Ahu.
    4. Laie (Polynesian Cultural Center & the Hawai'i Temple).
    5. The great food on the island (Dole Plantation, luau at the PCC, and the Hukilau.

    Finally, I’ll list my favorites:

    1. Snorkeling (sea turtles, squid, myriad of colorful fish).
    2. I loved getting away from work and spending time with my family.
    3. It was good to catch up with Jarod and Stacy, and their boys.
    4. The Polynesian Cultural Center was fascinating.
    5. The tours and museums in Pearl Harbor (USS Arizona Memorial, USS Missouri, USS Bowfin).

    P.S. Amy and I learned a couple of interesting things about our kids too. For instance, I didn’t know that the Tomahawk Missile was Tyrel’s “…second most favorite missile.”; Erin’s bum grumbles when it is hungry; Tyrel tried every food and fruit (e.g. mango, raw coconut, poi, coconut pudding, pineapple ice cream) he could find and still couldn’t find a single thing he hated.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Tyrel attempting to surf.
Erin easing into surfing. First time I have known her to be cautious.
Tyrel getting the hang of surfing.
Apparently sitting on the board wasn't enough of a challenge for Erin.
The inevitable. "This water tastes like salt."

The taste of salty water did not keep Erin at bay long.

In the museum near the USS Arizona Memorial.

Touring the "Mighty Mo."

Near the USS Arizona Memorial.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Never.. was so much owed by so many to so few- Winston Churchill

It is, in a way, an odd thing to honor those who died in defense of our country in wars far away. The imagination plays a trick. We see these soldiers in our mind as old and wise. We see them as something like the Founding Fathers, grave and gray-haired. But most of them were boys when they died, they gave up two lives — the one they were living and the one they would have lived. When they died, they gave up their chance to be husbands and fathers and grandfathers. They gave up their chance to be revered old men. They gave up everything for their county, for us. All we can do is remember.
— Ronald Wilson Reagan, President of the USARemarks at Veteran's Day Ceremony
Arlington National Cemetery ArlingtonVirginia, 11 November 1985

Friday, November 7, 2008


Halloween found our house with much fanfare. For Erin Christmas is the only other holiday to truly rival the last day of October. In the end, either one of these holidays involves lots of candy of which Erin is a radical connoisseur.

Erin recounted to me how she hooked up with her friends and then extorted candy from the neighbors. Her rendition made it sound as though this whole ordeal was old hat. Apparently, I missed the obvious and had to ask Amy who Erin’s “friends” were. It was admirable for the 10-11 year-old girls on our street to include Erin in their group. I don’t know exactly what they did or how Erin behaved, but I would guess the Snow White in this group had little in common with the Disney fair tale princess we all know; these girls took it all in stride.

Nobody is more proud of their Halloween loot than Erin. By the time I was able to quiz her about trick-o-treating most of her spoils had been reduced to a myriad of wrappers. Just so you know she has extensive dental work as a testament to her affinity for anything sweet- up to and including spoonfuls of straight sugar out of the family sugar bowl. The faint of heart cower at this exercise.

Tyrel has come into his own for this accepted time of tomfoolery and he is the perfect age for this holiday. He was eager to dress up as something other than what his mother thinks would be “cute” opting instead for the ghoulish and slightly warped.

Tyrel teamed up with friends and worked the neighborhood more akin to how I could imagine the mafia working over Hell’s Kitchen. His spoils were nearly a half a pillowcase worth measured is pounds and, unlike Erin, he rations this sustenance over time. It is likely he will still be dipping into the Halloween candy at Christmas, if Erin doesn’t reconnoiter and liberate it for herself.

As parents we had fun watching the enthusiasm of our kids as they dressed up and were allowed to openly pretend in front of our neighbors.

With this event written in the books, Hawaii is next!