Friday, November 30, 2007

It Still Feels Like August

My first holiday season in Hawaii has me in a bit of a tailspin.

Mostly it's because of the weather. The delicious, tropical weather that tells my brain it's still August, balmy and lovely, and why in the world are you worrying about shopping lists and shipping times?

But the calendar tells me a different story. It's November 30th and that means two things:

1. The Christmas countdown begins tomorrow and I'd better get my act together and take that adorable Christmas photo of the kids for the Christmas card already, and

2. NaBloPoMo is over.

Hope you enjoyed the daily posts and don't hold a grudge that I put up mostly photos throughout the month.

I can't imagine I'll return to that pace again for a while, but I promise not to abandon you entirely, either. We've still gots lots of fun stories to share here (stay tuned for a PG-13-rated one, courtesy of Finney Boy himself), and once I put down the sunscreen and pick up the Christmas decorations I'll be back to send some tropical warmth your way.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Tastes Better Than Miami Vice

We took our first family road trip last weekend, up to Oahu's North Shore -- world famous for its big surf and spectacular views. While making our way across the upper portion of the island, we visited Haleiwa, a little village famous mostly for two things: surf stuff and shave ice.

Matsumoto's Grocery Store, a little bunker of a roadside shop opened by Mamoru Matsumoto in 1951, apparently is THE place for shave ice. So on our northbound drive up the center of the island, we kept hyping the kids that they would soon get to try their first Shave Ice, a Famous Hawaiian Treat.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

"Can Finney get one, too, Mama?" Shea repeatedly asked me.

"Of course," I responded, not quite grasping what she meant. "Finney can get one, too."

* * * * * * * * * * * * *
Once we arrived at the store, the kids' eyes grew huge as they saw the patrons in front of them receive what must have looked like a chilly rainbow heaven atop a paper cone.

And the syrup selection soon began.

"I want pink and green. And red. And orange. Oh, and yellow," said Shea.

She finally settled on the rainbow combination, the perfect solution for toddlers who aren't quite adept at distinguishing colors from flavors yet.

"And what do you want on your shave ice, Finn?" I asked.

But before he could answer, Shea excitedly interjected with:

"They have Finneyvice, too?!?!"

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Apparently, she thought we'd been saying all day they'd be getting "Shea Vice."

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Monday, November 26, 2007

Putting Her Inner Rock Star Down For Nappies

One of my favorite things about our new Hawaii home is that the kids now have their own bedrooms.

Here's a photo of Shea's bedroom -- personally, I think it's the best one in the joint, tucked into the quiet back corner of the lot -- which has two sets of windows with lovely views of tropical plants and trees, and sits under the aegis of a mature mango tree.

That's what it looks like when it's clean and tidy, all picked up and vacuumed. Which happens about once a season. Just for pictures.

What's that? Oh, you noticed something different about the room? That's right, Inspector Detail, Shea no longer sleeps in her baby crib.

She is a FREE AGENT.

Because she's a "Big Girl" now.

The crib has been passed on to another family with a new baby on the way, and Shea now is the proud owner of a Pretty Princess Big Girl Toddler Bed (which really just used to be Finn's old rack).

She's excited and delighted to have this new bed. So much so that she spent most of her first day in its possession just lounging naked in it, pretending to read books and calling for her fiddlers three.

Here's what she looks like, on a good day, when she's napping in it -- all cheeks and thighs and toddler sighs.

As my Mom is fond of saying, "I'd like to just freeze-dry her in this stage."


Then there are days that are less picture perfect, when I peek in to check on her nap status and I discover this spatial imbroglio ... but no Shea.

Can you find the sleeping toddler in this picture, or did your heart also stop, ever so briefly, as you entertained the thought that somehow, maybe, she had climbed up and out of those pretty windows after first doing her best impersonation of Robert Plant trashing his room at the Chateau Marmont?

Here's the same scene from a different angle.

Well, she may not be the most conventional of nappers, but at least she was engrossed in a good book before the Sandman finally took her down.

Saturday, November 24, 2007


Guess who insists on showering by himself now?

"And you don't have to watch me, either, Mom!"

And he even comes out mostly clean.

Friday, November 23, 2007

A Glimpse Of Our First Hawaiian Thanksgiving

To which Shea made sure to wear her best twirling dress and at which no poi was served.


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Marital Bliss

Shea asked me to marry her this morning and I totally said yes.

(Sorry, John.)

I told her to go get herself ready and just as soon as I'd finished the breakfast dishes we'd get hitched.

Here's my blushing bride.

After our brief ceremony, where we held hands on the ottoman and I told her I loved her and she told me the same, we swapped smooches.

Then she called me "prince" and invited me to her "castle" (the tee pee).

The little tart.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The Great Divide

His and hers reactions to watching The Jungle Book for the first time.





And afterwards, while Shea took her nap after proclaiming "Jungle Book's a meanie!" Finney and I broke out my old Disney Jungle Book album and gave it a few spins on the turntable.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007