08 September 2012


It’s September, and while I had every good intention of wrapping up our Hawaiian summer by August 31, it just didn’t happen. So I did what every normal person does who needs to play catch up… I woke up at the crack of dawn to brew my coffee and sit down in front of my computer before waking the kids up, cooking breakfast, packing school lunch, and running out the door before 8:30am.

…but that didn’t happen.

As I knelt down to switch outlets for my laptop, I smelt something not-so-normal. I smelt cat pee. CAT PEE, PEOPLE! (back story: my neighbors generously pet-sat for me this summer, and well, Lucy wasn’t happy about it. She rebelled against her litterbox and wasn’t a good girl. I also want to point out publicly that my neighbor’s husband went above and beyond by washing my rugs -several times because Lucy peed on them- and looked after my house and car, AND re-hung my curtains that William pulled down back in March. Seriously, big hearted neighbors and I can’t thank them enough!) And so, apparently Lucy is still letting me know that she’s not happy with her past summer situation… I just might turn her into a pair of earmuffs this winter if she doesn’t knock it off, or possibly consider changing her name from Lucy to Lucifer. In conclusion, I have to buy a carpet shampooer, pet cleaner, and a black light.


About a week after we arrived in Hawaii, we were overwhelmed with all of the activities, events, and places to see, so we constructed a list of our top priorities --things we must do before leaving. Although not Hawaiian, The Buddhist Temple was compiled on that list --somewhere towards the bottom-- mainly because Krysta has been obsessing over the Chinese culture since she was six, and this would be an excellent hands-on experience for her.

After breakfast, we loaded up the car and drove across the island to Byodo-In Buddhist Temple. It was peacefully nestled at the foot of jagged mountains and lush foliage with every shade of green, contrasting beautifully among the red temple.


We made our way over the bridge, I was immediately in awe. The surrounding atmosphere was completely calming, like wrapping yourself with a huge quilt that warmly breathed “everything is just as it should”. Birds chirped amongst the trees, sounds of trickling waterfalls played in the background, and the occasional sound of the Gong could be heard throughout the grounds, instantly transforming you into a harmonious state of mind.

My mom and I soaked up the beauty while the kids mirrored Snow White by getting up close and personal with the local animals.

Feeding a wild bird from your hand was pretty awesome…

But feeding the Koi fish were by far their favorite. Their scales sparkled and glimmered under the surface like a pot of gold --equal parts gorgeous and enchanting.

When the sun elongated our shadows, we ventured back to Waikiki for a dinner and show.

And a show we got…

Every Friday night, Waikiki sets off fireworks. With bursts of color popping over palm trees and across the ocean, it was nothing short of a perfect ending to a perfect day.

Happy Weekending Everyone!


31 August 2012


I was a nervous wreck when the final hour turned to minutes. As time slipped through my fingers, we attempted to fight the inevitable, to cheat time by stashing a few extra minutes in our back pockets to prolong our departure time. My heart dropped into my stomach as the voice over the intercom announced our flight was now boarding to Dallas. This is it, no turning back. Leaving paradise, my mom, and the Hawaiian lifestyle was a hard reality to face-- it hurt and we all cried like babies.

We lived the life of Peter Pan-- internally optimistic, highly spirited, never wanting to grow up, and living life with a carefree attitude. Seven weeks in Hawaii has been a dream; an experience that we’ll never forget and memories that we’ll carry forever. We found a new love and a new perceptive; we’ve grown mentally, emotionally, and spiritually; and we’ve learned to hold tight to the important things, as well as what and when to let go of the hurt and pain. This has been a trip of renewal and healing. My soul has been stretched and my heart has been mended-- I’m forever changed.

“Hearts are breakable," Isabelle said. "And I think even when you heal, you're never what you were before".”  ~ Cassandra Clare, City of Fallen Angels

 Will was watching this couple for 30 minutes as he was trying to teach his girlfriend to snorkel.


 Krysta spent the entire day in the water... she grew gills.

We’re back in Oklahoma busily getting back into our normal routines of school and dance classes, plus my paintings and projects. I’ll be back in a couple of days to wrap up our Hawaii outings and sunny beach days, along with Krysta’s first day of school and (dare I say) Krysta’s ballet recital from back in June. Lots to do and lots to catch up.

Happy Friday,

02 August 2012

Dream Awake

It hasn’t sunk in that we’ve been temporarily living in Hawaii. I haven’t allowed my mind to go there because every day I want to live like it’s a dream. I want to feel and soak in every moment as if it were something so dainty, so fragile, so rare that if I take this beauty for granted this experience with dissipate and all with be lost. I want to hang on to this dream, to ride its rainbow, and to live everyday with purpose.

We drove down the street to Waikiki, for no particular reason than to witness the sun sinking.

She was brilliant. Stretching her rays on every touchable surface, taking in every remaining drop of the day until she peacefully slipped under pastel painted skies.

It was one of the most beautiful sunsets that I’ve seen here. The sand illuminated to a glowing orange, as shell bits glistened like a rotating disco ball.

Mom and I sat with our toes in the sand watching Krysta and William’s silhouettes race up and down the shoreline in fits of laughter.

How lucky we are.

Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.
~Henry David Thoreau

Until your tomorrow,


We've been nominated to participate in the Circle of Moms Top 25 Military Family Blogs 2012! It's such an honor to be part of this group. Please vote for us, once a day until August 16 by click the button below, then the "thumbs up" button by my name, "Writings of an Air Force Wife"! Thank you guys so much!

31 July 2012

Full. a BIG weekend post.

From beginning to end, our weekend was overflowing with fun tropical happenings, resulting in a stiff body, coffee-filled Monday morning.

We’ve been in Hawaii for five weeks, and as amazing and surreal as that sounds, the reality of that statement is we only have one week left until we head home. It’s truly bittersweet. We’ve had the time of our lives spread across the beaches of Oahu, on top of spending time with Mimi (my mom). As bitter as leaving all of this sounds, the deliciously sweet side is when we land in Oklahoma, we’ll have one month --possibly two-- until this deployment comes to an end.

Friday we ventured to a lagoon, peacefully anchored between Honolulu’s city buildings and the Pacific Ocean. If you remember this post, this was the first place we visited when we first arrived here on the island. I was instantly bursting with creatively and a rekindled internal fire, which even today I’m finding hard to contain. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again… “This place is magical.”

The highlight wasn’t the calm pace of life inside city walls, or the lush lime greenery, or even the twinkling aqua water… it was these birds:

There were flocks of these white and grey birds, scattered along the sand, in between palm trees and around beachgoers. In one swiping gush, like synchronized swimmers, they fluttered up into the air and dashed around the lagoon making circles and figure eights. Everyone stopped to watch the show.

Swish, swish, swish, they danced through the sky, then like falling confetti, the birds gracefully bowed on the beach. William shrieked, “MOM-MOM!!!!”. Mom-mom is what Will now calls me. It’s the new “mama”.

birds circling the lagoon

Saturday came bright and early, as we drove out to North Shore to go hiking.

Our Destination: Waterfall.

It was beautiful and well worth the huffing and puffing, and the sticky sweat that came along with it. We passed through rivers, ponds, lush foliage, and tropical flowers. Stopping to take in the beauty along the way, we were treated with various species of exotic bird who sang from the tree tops.

The rumbling of water rolled in the background as it trickled around rocks and curved into the water hole. We made it!

My mom and the kids jumped in the water for a refreshing dip while I sat on the edge wishing I had brought my swimsuit. Krysta was completely over-the-moon to have been able to swim in a waterfall. I’m sure she’ll take these memories with her always. 

 my mom swimming with the kids

We couldn’t leave North Shore without going to the beach.

After our hike, we hunted for a parking spot where I swapped out my clothes for a swimsuit.

Let me just point out that I’m so glad we got to experience swimming in North Shore, however, I’ll never return to this particular slice of the beach. It’s totally not kid friendly or out-of-shape mom friendly. We lugged beach chairs, beach bags, sand buckets, and a cooler --along with William’s over-the-top ambition to run straight for the water even while I’m screaming “William stop, William wait”--  through the loose sand, up and over sand dunes, and down to the beach. I.THOUGHT.I.WOULD.DIE.

But alas, we made it just as the tide was carrying out, revealing a nice little drop off to fish my partially drowning kids out of the water.

We opted for plan B: to build castles, which ended up in a fight over whose sand is whose, so on and so forth. I turned to my mom, “let’s just call it a day.”  

this photo represents my kids the best-- Krysta posing for the camera while William runs in the opposite direction.

Don’t let these photos fool you….they’re actually squealing at each other.

The weekend ended with relaxing weather, cloudy and rainy. We were determined to have a low key beach day, and Hanauma Bay was the perfect location for doing just that. A bay surrounded by mountains and lined with palm trees, along with very small waves, lifeguards on duty, good sand for castle building, and lots of other small children to play with, plus great snorkeling on the reef for us adults.

It was nice and completely made up for Saturday’s beach experience.

I relaxed, sank into my beach chair, and struggled to stay awake. It felt so good.

The kids played.

And all was right.


We've been nominated to participate in the Circle of Moms Top 25 Military Family Blogs 2012! It's such an honor to be part of this group. Please vote for us, once a day until August 16 by click the button below, and then the "thumbs up" button by my name, “Writings of an Air Force Wife”! Thank you guys so much!