Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter 2011 in Hawaii

When Joseph of Arimathea offered his tomb, he certainly never thought it was going to be a "loan"! 

This video was taken at First Presbyterian Church of Honolulu at Ko'olau, of hula, which might be described as Hawaiian sign language.
Davey's legendary standing rib roast, wine fit for a conoisseur, some clever cross between asparagus and broccoli that I found, garlic mashed potatoes, huge salad, and horseradish sauce made with creme fraiche!
Yes, of course he made his Yorkshire Pudding!!!
The boys are getting old enough now to join the grown-ups to "talk story" during and after dinner.
Tonight included some time with Richard - Sam using his iPad and Ben watching Sam but planning on some story time.  After dinner, the 3 boys (Ben-3, Sam-6 and Daddy Dave) brought out their ukes and guitars and jammed.

The whole day was what Easter is about - time to enjoy family and to rest in the confidence of Jesus' redeeming power.

Doug and Mary - we miss you and Mary's family.
We also miss the rest of our family in CA, WA, South Carolina, and NJ. 

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Fun with ukeleles

The day before Easter was made brighter than ever by Eddie and Myrna Kamae who spent the afternoon at Alli and Dave's home.  We had an Easter Egg hunt, dancing to a loud little Ben (3) who was playing the guitar and hollaring out Springsteen's "Waitin on a Sunny Day" while Myrna danced along side him.  Sam and Eddie had a practice session and a neighbor brought her uke as well.  With them, we have honed our pleasure of the Hawaiian phrase "talk story" and can't get enough of it!

In this video, Alli and Sam are singing along with Eddie Kamae to one of his songs composed especially for keiki (children) in 1971 :

   The Aloha of the Kamaes is present wherever they go and they teach by fine example.  Our family is richly blessed to count them as friends.  To enjoy them and appreciate their passions, do pay them a visit at

To learn more about them:

Aloha Pumehana, Eddie and Myrna!

Friday, April 22, 2011


This is the first church to be erected on O'ahu, often referred to as The Mother Church.  It was established by missionaries coming from the NE via a 6 to 9 month ocean voyage.  They were well received by the royalty and subjects of Hawaii's monarchy.  Each "brick" is a 1,000 lb. slab of coral that was chiseled from the ocean!  Kawaiaha'o (pronounced Ka-v-eye aha 'o) means The waters of Ha'o named after the Chieftess Ha'o who came here for fresh water from the spring which rose from the desert of Honolulu.
Read a brief history here: 
Each attendee placed a nail at the foot of the cross to symbolize surrendering our burdens to Jesus.
This church has great meaning for Richard and me -- we have been here several times over the last few years and learn more each time about the missionaries who came to Hawaii, and the lives of the monarchs who attended here along with their "subjects".  Richard and I have visited and taken photos in the church graveyard, noting the inscriptions of great faith on the head stones of those whose children died so young.  As Alli noted when she visited, this was well before vaccines could have saved many lives. 

Paintings hang on the balcony walls surrounding the sanctuary, of the Monarchs.  This church continues to minister to its congregants and is engaged in a huge building project.  The services I've attended are in English, but the hymns are sung in Hawaiian which sounds so angelic.  Scripture is read in both English and Hawaiian.  

We felt a "calling" to the Moana Surfrider Hotel, a favorite of ours, after Good Friday services.

Retirement.  I recommend it!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Let's Go Kayaking!


Oh help me . . . I'm addicted!

Friday, January 28, 2011


The 3-day-in-the-making Volcano Cake went to school today to show off!
There's Alli with this amazing cake!  Per Richard, "I'll have to say, she's outdone herself this time!"

The traveling road show packed into school in one trip, and after the class, it migrated to the school office for a re-creation!  That cake was HEAVY!  Ben's legs are sprawled atop the dry ice container, and on top of the stroller are such things as paper plates and forks, a trash bag, implements for "igniting" the volcano and wipes for 28 kindergartner mugs and hands.

We're ready!  Sam wanted his mom to do some "teaching" about volcanos, and he picked out the book he wanted her to use.  Note Ben in the back with his special gloves which can "touch" dry ice, if needed.

Sam and his class arrive!  Sam is in striped shirt about 5th back from the front.

Sam's teacher brings him to the front.

Teaching time -  SUBLIMATION! which is when, for example, dry ice, which is frozen carbon dioxide, goes from solid to gas  without a liquid phase like water has.   Also, some teaching about Hawaii's  active Kilauea volcano which we will see tomorrow when we fly to the Big Island.

N-I-C-E  J-O-B !
Blowing out the candle

Can we have more, please?

A class picture!

Ben, you were so good!  He's pictured here with the local Muscovys!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Just wait'll tomorrow when Richard and I get back from Honolulu with dry ice!  Alli will dump some chunks into the half-soda can in the top, and pour in a little hot water, and billows of steam will pour out.  Theoretically.  She'll run a test tomorrow at home, but at 1 p.m., the cake goes to school for 28 members of Sam's class to witness this active volcano!


Speedy hands (check Sam's) were digging in to the frosting in order to fill in some gaps needing lots of "mortar".  Sometimes our fingers tangled in the can!  It was really fun!  That speedy hand managed to sweep past my clean shorts, depositing a glob on them that got us on another round of  laughing.

Here's the right way to scoop out large globs.  We had scrubbed hands first, of course!

Only once, at the start, did Sam suggest "I should probably take just a little taste of the frosting . . . to be sure it is fresh!"  Amazingly, when he was through globbing, he WASHED his hands instead of licking, but when I asked if he'd help clean mine off, he happily got right in there to eat it!

It's mom and Sam's partnership that delicately added the "lava flow".  A great team effort!


Tuesday, January 25, 2011


That's an early sign that not everything's in place for this day!  Richard and I  got the call while at Kalapawai waiting for breakfast,  asking for a jump from "Triple R". 
That's for  "Richard's Ready to Roll".
Apparently, "somebody" left the truck key in "accessory" position overnight, resulting in a nice dead battery surprise for the morning!  Ben, quickly discerning his mom's need for rescue, put the jump cables on his "ATV" and coupled them to the truck.  There wasn't quite enough "oomph", so lucky us, we're in Hawaii in just the right place to rescue the damsel.  Ben was so sweet, having earlier tried to pump up tires and do whatever might make the truck work.

In return for his effort, he was to start the car (pretend).  You should see our little '96 Ford Escort (seen through the far window) jumping the huge Nissan X-terra!  It's hilarious!  This is x-2, since we had this drill about 4 weeks ago.  Practice makes perfect.

Ben's ready to roll with a "b'bye, Gwamma!"

However, this is volcano cake baking day, which entails a trip to the Commissary only 2 miles away.  Not enough of a trip to charge the battery, so "gwamma" gets to go and sit in the idling Nissan while Ben and Alli scramble through the shopping.  Gwamma has no objection - her iPhone 4 keeps her amused!

Arms are flailing around everywhere when Sam gets home from school!  This is no common cake, of course!  It's a volcano cake (we'll be going to the Big Island this weekend to see one up close), which will be spewing hot gasses (dry ice in the center with a little water to make it spout).  It's many layers of cake which will be loaded with frosting and taken to Sam's class at school.  Sam's holding the electric mixer here, Alli containing Ben (somewhat), and that's my hand on the red bowl hoping to keep it from spinning onto the floor!   :)

This is the 2nd batch of layers.  I got off easy . . . Ben has lost a little interest and is being amused by Alli while the first batch is baking.

The very tricky assembling (don't talk to me right now) stage!  It's quite an architectural workup.  
Holding it's shape in the fridge for the night.  Dave was a little less than enthused - he doesn't know yet what we can do cosmetically with a ton of frosting!  You just wait, Davey!  Tomorrow's a whole new day of creativity!  Oh, we also need to source dry ice.  Having a little trouble with that.  Anyone have a CO2 fire extinguisher to donate?  It'll make dry ice!

Sam and I finished the day with a couple of  games of Checkers - he won!  Richard took a weary gwamma out to a nice dinner.

Monday, January 24, 2011


Nice reward for getting up early to do my walk!

We call this the "VW Bug Move" with Ben driving.

I guess this is the "horsie move".

On our way to Dole Plantation, we stopped at our local Kalama Beach Park to take a look at what the sea delivered last night.  Unusual.  An abundance of driftwood met up with some creative users.

Over the H-3 - here's what an O'ahu highway looks like from our Windward side.  Clouds veil the Ko'olau Mountains making for some dramatic views.

Equipment from the early 20th century.  Immigrants were desperately needed during the 19th C. for plantation work, which gave rise to the nice cultural blends we have in Hawaii today.

The "Pineapple Express" train.


The Pineapple Express - a nice overview of the plantation
Collections of hibiscus.  The yellow hibiscus is Hawaii's state flower.

Sugar cane

Beautiful places to hang out.