Friday, March 27, 2009

Enjoying a Grandchild

Joseph's choice of activity for the day was to share the Bishop Museum with his dad. Dad thought he was going to get culture. He got some of that, but he also got a lot of hands-on science along the way.

Science at the Bishop Museum has a somewhat different focus than similar facilities on the mainland. Here, the focus is on indigenous plants and animals, volcanoes and their products, and waves. The 3-story model volcano contains exhibits of volcanic products, periodically belches steam/smoke, and houses at its lowest level the Hot Spot where they tell you about how the various volcanic products are produced -- and then pour molten rock from a 2700 degree F furnace onto a sheet of heavy metal to show what lava looks like right of nature's own hot spot, the magma pool deep under a volcanic area. There are several displays about waves -- waves around the islands; what wind makes b-i-g waves where I am; and demonstrations of several mechanisms creating waves.

At the planetarium we sat back and watched the stars visible tonight over Hawaii. We found Orion the Hunter trying to reach the Pleiades, those seven young sisters riding on the shoulder of Taurus the Bull. Behind Orion we saw Leo the Lion, Scorpio (whom the Hawaiians described as a fish hook), and the Gemini twins Castor and Pollux. We saw the planets Saturn, Mercury and Jupiter rising in the early morning sky, with the sun close behind them. We even saw the Southern Cross, not far above the horizon.

We enjoyed the animation exhibit sponsored by the Cartoon Network and on loan from the Museum of Science and Industry in Portland, Oregon, as well as the displays currently open in the still-being-refurbished Hawaii Hall. The main display area with most of the Hawaiian exhibits will not reopen until later this year. In the photo at the top of this screen, Joseph is working at the station about computer-animated images of events we cannot photograph -- in this case, the arrival of a robotic vehicle on Mars. Maybe it's my own video production experience, but I found this exhibit much more interesting than the one on sharks that occupied the space last winter.

By 2:00 (we had arrived at 9:30 a.m.) we were all ready to move on. I headed over to see my dad and pick up his dirty laundry. By 4:00 this grandma was glad to be home and able to put her feet up.

Nancy Ruth, Joe and Joseph headed for the Elks Club and some beach time. Nancy called later. Joseph had found a playmate. Sunset Beach has its fame, but is a destination unto itself. It doesn't have all the things that Waikiki offers to keep 9-year-old boys entertained. Tomorrow they are moving to town.

Give thanks for your family, however it has grown. Give thanks for grandchildren -- God's promise that the world will go on. Don't forget to pray.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A Day at the Beach

Yesterday I drove 100 miles. On Oahu. Which has only 112 miles of coastline. More or less. I guess I should have just continued in the direction I was going, instead of back-tracking the way I had come. We think nothing of driving 100 miles when you can easily travel 1000 by car. But the perspective changes when your land mass is 604 square miles of rock in the middle of an ocean. Yosemite National Park is bigger than the island of Oahu. So is the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

The object of all this driving was to visit hanai daughter Nancy Ruth and her family who are spending the week with hubby Joe's sister and her significant other at their newly purchased home at Sunset Beach. It's a relatively new home on the water in a small gated community at the Kahuku end of town. Joseph had a surfing lesson in the morning, was apparently scared when dumped off his board, and is fighting a cold -- so disappeared to bed and was conspicuous by his absence. Joe went off with his sister to Pearl City. Dana was looking for shelving, Joe for a pair of binoculars big enough to allow him to watch both whales and surfers. Nancy Ruth and I watched the whales, visited, had a light lunch, visited, walked the beach, visited more. When the rains came, we went inside. It was good for me. I hope it was as good for her.

The beach was not quite like the photo above. The day was more overcast, lacking the brilliant hues of ocean, mountains, sky and vegetation. Kaena Point was partially obscured by mist, perhaps a misty rain. The waves were generally flatter. But the air was mild, the occasional sprinkles not disruptive, and the ocean calming. We watched whale spouts and splashes instead of big surf. It was quiet, calming, restorative.

Nancy is master of understatement. "There is a construction person here." she told me on the phone. "They had a little water damage that needed repair." The "little water damage" turned out to be 2.5 feet of water throughout the main floor, with accompanying mold and fungus growth, after the water heater failed. While they were ripping out drywall, Dana and Kario also replaced two small windows with sliding glass doors and re-designed a closet, making the main floor feel more expansive. Now they are painting, considering new flooring and entire kitchen remodel. I wonder if thinking green(as in preserve and recyle) is part of their head set.

The message that I would be visiting did not get to Kario. He was taken quite by surprise when he answered my knock at the door, and nearly had me packed off and heading back to town before Nancy saw me and called out. She later commented that Kario and Dana found evidence that at least one well-known young member of the surfer community had been squatting in their home during their absence, leaving behind identifying information. Did I look like a squatter? I suppose my "Keep the Country COUNTRY" t-shirt didn't do much to endear me to Kario who appreciates, perhaps covets, exactly the kind of property that the Defend Oahu Coalition opposes. I suggested a local property manager would be a good insurance policy, both for incidents like the water heater and as a protection against squatters.

Give thanks for the ocean and quiet days. Look for shafts of sunlight between the darker clouds. Don't forget to pray. Oh yes, give thanks for my brother Ian who has unknowingly provided the sun-in-clouds photo, above ...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

To the Mothers of 9-Year-Olds

At least two of you out there are parents of 9-year-olds. As I was raking leaves this morning a thought struck me. Just yesterday those 9-year-olds were new babies. Wasn't it this morning that they were learning to walk, to ride a bike, tie shoe laces, and heading off to kindergarten? High school graduation is a million years in the future. Right along there with the driver's license and college tuition.

Here's the bad news. By the time those wonderful 9-year-old children turn 18, they will be champing at the bit to be somewhere else. Anywhere else. How did you feel at 18? Yes, at least one of you wished at 18 that she had parents to go home to. At least one of you might have enjoyed a more traditional nuclear family. At least one of you was pushing out into new frontiers of independence. Ray and I used to laugh together and say that God gives us teen-agers so that when it is time for our children to leave home, we breathe a huge sign of relief and say, "GO!" Oh, we still love you. Nothing can change that. We want you to come home regularly, to keep in touch, to tell us how you feel and what you are thinking about. But we don't want you hanging about the house as irresponsible adults, either. So we teach our children to be independent, to think for themselves, to take responsibility for their actions, and to challenge those ideas, beliefs and practices they believe are unjust. Then we sputter and spit and shed a tear or two when they do just that! You will, too.

Consider. Nine is half of 18. If you have 9-year-olds, they are already half-way out your door. Cherish them. Guide them. Bribe them and compromise with them. Teach them about the logical consequences (positive and negative) of their behavior. What other important lessons do they need to learn in their second 9 years of life? Will they be as ready as they think they are? Never. As ready as they need to be? Perhaps. Missed at home? Always.

The other day I heard a radio piece about a mother in the southern US who allowed her 10-year-old son to walk -- alone -- to baseball practice. Son begged and pleaded to be allowed this privilege. Parents had taken all the proper precautions at home. He knew the way, had walked it several times with family. He knew not to get into a car with strangers. He had a cell phone with him. Mom would run one errand and arrive at the ball field about 15 minutes after the start of practice. I don't remember if they had told the coach he was walking alone. Several adults saw him en route. They called the police, who responded and drove the child to the ball field. Mother, when she arrived, was thoroughly chastised and accused of child endangerment. Who were the responsible adults in this case? The parents, who allowed their son to exercise a bit of independence? Those who called the police? The police? I don't know. I tend to support the parents.

Never again will a 3-year-old and a 7-year-old get on a bus together, ride to the end of the line, go to the zoo, and then catch a bus home. Too bad. I have fond memories of those trips. My brother and I did it more than once.

Give thanks for children -- ours and those who touch our lives. Don't forget to pray!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Kimo's Day

Thirty-nine years ago yesterday I was on staff at an Episcopal church in Palo Alto, California. I went to work that Sunday morning with my week-old son -- dressed in rosebuds and pink lace. We had picked him up the day before at Los Angeles Airport. With less than a week's notice that a new baby boy was joining our family, there was lots to be done. Clean up the crib. Find the sheets and blankets. Round up the essential new baby paraphernalia like diapers, diaper pins and bottles. Where was the baby carrier? No home-from-the-hospital carseats in those days! I think we were also at the end of the diaper pin era. We had to buy airline tickets and find a hotel room in Los Angeles where we were to meet a plane from Hawaii. We would meet a doctor we had never seen before, but who we would recognize by the newborn he was delivering from Hawaii. There wasn't any time left over for finding a little boy wardrobe.

Today that little boy is an adult, a proud dad himself, and wouldn't be caught dead in pink, let alone rosebuds and lace. I honor his biological mother by allowing her to celebrate the weekend of his birth. This weekend belongs to our family.

Give thanks for Kimo, for his wife Lu, and for their daughters Brianna, Kianna and Kayla. Also for Lu's other children -- George, Gabriel and Veronica. Don't forget to pray!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Aloha, Verna

My friend Verna passed away at 2:12 p.m. today California time. She was 86. Verna is the lady who lived with me for several weeks last summer when she left the hospital after wrecking her car in Sonora. She was vibrant and unconventional right up to the end. (photo, left: Verna (Silver) Nosker with brothers Dick and Bob Silver and their mother Mary (Bogan) Silver circa 1983)

Verna was from two old Tuolumne County families. Her father was a Silver, one of 24 (yes, you read that correctly) children born to Francis and Julia (Salvador) Silver of Shaws Flat. Her mother was a Bogan from Stent, eldest of nine children of James Bogan of Stent and his Chiliean wife Hannah (also called Faviana) dela Cruz Fuentes of Montezuma. About this time of year there's a wonderful display of daffodils under an old oak tree in a horse pasture just southerly of the Cal-Trans yard on Montezuma Road. That's where, said Verna, Mary (Bogan)Silver's Chilean grandmother lived when Mary was a little girl, where the children went to visit and learn Spanish. Although she was born in Stockton and lived very little of the first 40 or so years of her life in Tuolumne Co., Verna always considered herself local. You could bet that she'd tell every waitress, every nurse, every service person she met in the county, "I'm an old timer, honey. I'm an old timer." She was not referring to her age. Only in the last year had Verna begun to think of herself as getting old.

Verna was passionate about young people. She returned to Tuolumne Co. in the 1960's to provide services for children and teens through the mental health program. She was heavily involved in programs combating substance abuse among teens. She later provided counseling in the public schools especially in the outlying communities. The kids called her "the lady with the knot on her head" because she wore her long hair tightly wrapped into a bun on the very top of her head. Ray and I met her through the mental health services she provided in Groveland, and became close friends. When she retired in the 1980's we collected her mail from Jamestown and held it until she arrived somewhere within a 100 mile radius, then delivered it. She and her parrot, a Yellow-Naped Amazon named Goldie (after a cousin, Golden Silver), criss-crossed the western US in a 24-foot motor home, visiting friends and family where ever they happened to be. Two or three times a year she'd spend a couple of weeks in our driveway before moving up to Yosemite Lakes RV park, down to Turtle Beach RV park in Manteca, over to the KOA park between Stockton and Lodi, or one of her other favorite haunts.

Verna was loud, outspoken, and stubborn. She had a unique style. One day she spilled paint on a new pair of khakis. Throw them away? Never! Verna found a brush and daubed red, green, yellow, blue and orange paint all over those pants. Then she painted a couple of pairs of white tennis shoes for good measure. She found causes and hung onto them. She warned seniors about mail fraud (as she regularly returned her Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes entries), boycotted Wal-Mart after they refused to accept any liability when she was injured by another customer in a motorized shopping cart, and daily reminded me, "You have to take care of yourself, honey." She was ecstatic when her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren came to visit or sent photos. Like all moms, she fretted when she didn't hear from them "enough". We never near from our children "enough".

Give thanks for Verna's life. Give thanks that she did not suffer excessively from her cancer. Pray for her family. Be at peace, my friend.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Getting Back on Track

It has been two years. I finally went back to church. Chose the same church I grew up in, where I was confirmed, where I spent half my life in junior high and high school. That was a l-o-n-g time ago! The church is a little different. There Is stained glass(free-form color design rather than drawn images) in the long windows on the east wall behind the altar; once those were clear louvers. The massive marble cross suspended above the altar is draped in purple for Lent. I don't remember what color the carpet used to be, but clearly what is there now is less than 50 years old! But the altar is still where it was placed in 1954, although the communion rail has been modified to bend around the altar rather than to separate it from the congregation. Thankfully, no one has tried to shape the graceful facility into a church-in-the-round -- something for which it was never intended.

What were once the church offices have become Sunday School space, and the offices have moved across the street to what we once called the Youth Center. I don't know what they call it now. The congregation is much smaller (we used to fill the church) and much older -- very few under retirement age. Once upon a time we could gather 30 or 40 teens for a youth group meeting, 50 or more for weekly worship.

Ooops. Started this post a couple of evenings ago, then got sidetracked and forgot it needed to be finished.

It felt good to be back in the familiarity of the liturgy, albeit with not-quite-familiar service music and two pieces sung in Hawaiian. Nobody was doing that even 40 years ago. I realized just how "high church" I have become after more than 30 years in the Diocese of San Joaquin. There, it's difficult to tell the difference between an Episcopal church (if you can still find one) and a Roman Catholic church. No room for Stations of the Cross and other high church acoutrements at Holy Nativity -- the side "walls" are all glass doors that can be open or shut as the weather demands. The only bell is the one that calls us to worship before the processional hymn. The acolytes wear waist-length cottas over their shorts, t-shirts and bare feet. The women of the choir could add the appropriate lei and be in full Daughters of Hawaii regalia -- long white muumuu, white sandals. Chalice bearers and readers do not vest. The priest wears sandals under his alb and forgoes the cincture. Nothing is disrespectful, just adapting to local conditions.

This was the first step. The Church has been an anchor most of my life, and this particular church laid the foundation. Will it once again become my church home? We'll see.

Give thanks for the people of Holy Nativity who reach out into their community. Don't forget to pray.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Taking Chances

The other day I wrote about having the courage to step out and do something really different. Yesterday turned out to be one of those days.

It started out simply enough. I went to the hairdresser. I am currently "seeing" a young man named Jake, a student at the Paul Mitchell School in nearby Kaimuku. Jake had cut my hair several weeks ago, cut it shorter than I really liked (but cut exactly what I asked for), so we were learning together about making adjustments. He spent a lot of time asking what I was looking for in a hair style. I want to be able to go out in the wind and come in looking maybe a little windblown, but not a complete disaster. Been having trouble with that in Hawaii. So he thought, and he trimmed, and he shaped, and I could see the wheels turning. Eventually he asked about a "deep conditioning" treatment to soften up some of the frizzies that natural curls acquire in humid environments. Then he added, "with a little temporary color".

I balked. I argued with myself. After all, I've gone this far in life without coloring my hair. Why start now? Then I though about that bulldozer, and new directions. Offered the thought that Sarah would opt for burgandy. Jake thought that was a great plan. The compromise? When I look in the mirror, I see almost a dark blonde. Blonde????? What do you see? It's really all the same color. We have to make allowances for the webcam and its limitations.

Interestingly, at the hospital yesterday afternoon several people commented that I look different. Universally, they saw only the style (straight) -- not the color change. Once I style this cut myself it will likely look different. We shall see. Meanwhile, the students cut and style into what they are taught, encouraged to learn the basics before they begin to improvise. Good plan!

Find something positive about today. Give thanks. Don't forget to pray!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Changing Weather

What do they call it when the seasons move? Not change -- they are going to do that anyway. But move -- happen at a different time of the year? The change is not dramatic, but I see it happening. Is it my imagination, or does anyone else experience a similar phenomenon?

When I moved to California in the mid-1960's, we used to have a sharp cold snap in September. Out came the cool-weather clothes, the long sleeves, the jackets, the rain gear. Then we had a spate of beautiful, warm weather before the cooler stuff really set in by mid-October. You could plan a ski-trip for January and count on snow in the mountains.

Then we moved to Groveland. People talked about winters with two or three snowfalls of 1' or more. They said those ended when Don Pedro Reservoir was filled. I remember coming home from the Bay Area in November 1978. The radio was full of news from Jonestown. Remember that this was the San Francisco Bay Area, home to 99% of the victims. My Volvo was stuffed with an extra kid in the back seat, weekend luggage, the results of a spree of grocery and Christmas shopping, even a Christmas tree. Naturally, the chains were at the bottom of the heap. The snow level was about 2000' -- half-way down the New Priest Grade -- and we crawled through Big Oak Flat with Ray admonishing all other drivers, "Don't stop, you fool!" We crawled sideways up the divide between Big Oak and Groveland, used the downhill momentum to get us through Groveland town, and slid into a parking space at the Pine Mountain Lake main gate. Ray hitched a ride home on the snowplow and came back in the full-size 4x4 pickup which he said was pushing snow with the front bumper down Ferretti Road. We abandoned the car and went home in the truck. We were 3 days without power in that storm, mostly spent huddled in front of the fireplace -- which did not morph into a wood stove for several years.

These days, you can't count on snow in January. The storms are not coming until February and March. Even then, shoveling more than once a year, and then only a couple of inches at a time, is unusual in Groveland. It may stay cool into June, and still be summer in September. In July or August there may be 10 days of daytime temps well over 100, night temps never less than 70. Without air conditioning, it just plain hot.

In Honolulu, 72 degrees is cool. I can't remember what the seasons style:italic;">should be like in Hawaii. But it's mid-March, I'm sitting around in long sleeves and still enjoying sleeping under a down comforter. The wind is ferociously gusty outside, and there's a whole new array of leaves to be swept up off the lawns before the green garbage pick-up comes again. Flowers cling tenaciously to the mango trees, promising lots of fruit this summer. But it takes 4-5 months from flowering to fruit picking, and these trees usually bear in mid-summer. We expect the flowers weeks earlier than this.

What's happening in your neighborhood? Are the swallows still returning to Capistrano -- and Moccasin -- on the 19th of March? Is it the right season at the wrong time? Has Mother Earth changed her angle in relation to the sun? Is it Global Warming at work? Is my imagination working overtime?

Look for positives. Give thanks for the gifts we have. Don't forget to pray ....

Friday, March 6, 2009


It's not about what you think!

Have you ever been offered an opportunity, a really special opportunity, then been too cowardly to take it? Of course you have. We all have.

Like that fresh-out-of-college job offer. For years I had planned to spend at least a couple of years as a flight attendant (back then we called them Stewardesses)for United Airlines between college graduation and settling into a teaching career. The only fly in the ointment was the UAL requirement for a minimum uniform size. They demanded a minimum size 8; I wore a size 3. In 21st century fashion, that's about a Size 0. Admittedly I could have carried more weight, but I don't think I was skeletal. It didn't matter. United was not an option. American Airlines was. Could I start training in February in Kansas City? Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhh... Kansas. That's east of Colorado. Wrong direction! What did an American Airlines aircraft look like? I couldn't remember ever seeing one, let alone fly on one. What state is Kansas City in?

It was much more comfortable to take the teaching position in California. In the grand scheme of things, that's not a decision I regret. The one I regret has to do with dams, spillways, and a D9 Caterpillar tractor.

If you knew me in the pre-Groveland days, you knew a real girly-girl. Like the character in "Flower Drum Song", I enjoy being a girl. Swirling (or slinkly) skirts, spikey high heels, books, needlework, entertaining, dolls, lace .... Then I got a job with a drinking water/hydroelectric power system. After a few years as a secretary, I found myself in a new role -- providing visual documentation of system conditions and changes. That required being with a camera (or two or more) where the work was being done. It was fascinating. It meant getting dirty. I had my own set of company-provided coveralls, a couple of hard hats, and 2 pairs of rubber boots -- one knee-high for ordinary wet-and-muddy, and one hip-high for the REALLY yucky places. Those had to be specially ordered -- no catalog house stocks boots for women with short, fat feet. One year we had to modify a spillway, allowing it to carry more water and reduce the risk of flooding. We hired a couple of extra Equipment Operators, including one gentleman only a bit younger than my dad who normally worked as a laborer. I liked working with Otto because he had lots of stories to tell about the area through which our pipelines passed -- all 135 miles of pipeline. Otto liked me, maybe because I liked to listen to his stories.

Every afternoon I went down to the job site, perched somewhere out of the way, and filmed the operators at work. They cut material away, moved it someplace else, shaped the new spillway according to the engineering plans, and loaded excess rock and dirt into dump trucks that hauled it off to a spoils area. It was summer. Field crews were on their daylight saving time schedule, 7 to 3:30. I don't do mornings gracefully. I kept the 8-4:30 schedule.

One afternoon Otto called, "Want to drive?" I gulped. "It's easy." he assured me. "You can do it." Aaaaaahhhhhh ... but it's big. It's noisy. Uuuuuuuhhhhhhhhh ... one of the superintendents will come along and catch me playing instead of filming. Some of them really didn't like women on their jobs in the first place.

In the end I declined. No, refused. Didn't have the nerve to try. By the time I realized I really should do it, the cat work was complete and my opportunity was gone.

What opportunity did you let slip away? Why do you regret your decision? Will the opportunity ever come by again? Can you get around your regrets?

Give thanks for the opportunities, especially the ones taken. Look for new opportunities. Don't forget to pray!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Reaching Out

I am reaching out tonight to my friend, Sharon. Ray called her Smiley, because when we first met her she didn't say much but sure did grin! Over the last 25 years Sharon has gained enough weight that she recently opted for gastric bypass surgery.

Now, as she comes home and begins a whole new relationship with food, Sharon faces a new set of challenges. So does her family. If I were constrained to the limits of a gastric bypass diet, I know I wouldn't be the least bit interested in cooking meals for anyone else. The temptation to abuse my tiny new stomach would be too great to assure a successful outcome of the surgery.

Let's pray for strength for Sharon as she learns to live with her new, tiny stomach. Let's pray that she has the guts and determination to do those things she has to do. She's faced and overcome some pretty awesome challenges in the last few years. I know she can do this, too -- with help. Let's pray for her husband and sons. Mom's not a mind reader, guys. She needs you to TELL her how much you love her and that you really do stand beside her every step of the way in her new journey. We all need that kind of support in our lives. It's not unique to Sharon or this particular situation. Nor is it unique to women. Oh, yes. Then she needs you to walk the talk.

Look for those silver linings. Trips through the grocery store can focus on quality rather than quantity. Dinner out can be one entree and two plates. Give thanks -- for Sharon's determination and courage. Keep praying.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A New Role

I spent the morning yesterday repackaging 10 antique quilts into storage boxes at the Queen Emma Summer Palace in Nu'uanu Valley. The palace is one of two Hawaiian royal palaces operated by Daughters of Hawaii, a lineage society like DAR or the Mayflower Society. In this one, you have to have an ancestor who was living in Hawaii by 1880. In my case, that is my Hawaiian great-grandmother Kina.

Emma (1836-1885) was the wife of Alexander Liholiho, who reigned from 1855-1874 as King Kamehameha IV. Emma was responsible for establishing Queen's Hospital, today the 500+ bed hospital where my father spent two weeks in November and December, 2008. Emma brought medical services to the Hawaiian people (distinct from others who lived in Hawaii). It was at her invitation that the Anglican church came to Hawaii, and that two Anglican nuns arrived to open a school for girls. The story handed down in my family is that Emma called on all her relatives and friends to send their daughters to the new school. That was 1867.

When Kina was old enough, she left Hana on the island of Maui to attend Queen Emma's school, St. Andrew's Priory, in Honolulu. She wouldn't stay long, for at 14 she gave birth to her first child. She was only 19 when my grandmother, her 5th child, was born in November 1888. By September 1891 Kina was pregnant with child #7. Daughters 5 and 6 were by her current partner, who put the two little girls in the care of the nuns at St. Andrew's Priory, and took Kina to California. The couple returned to Hawaii the following month and separated shortly after. Their daughters remained at the Priory until they married. Our family owes a great deal to Queen Emma.

The quilts which were the object of yesterday's exercise had been part of a 3-month exhibit in the Summer Palace, and were demanding attention. We folded them in acid-free paper, repackaged them in their storage boxes, and returned the boxes to their shelves. It's fun to be back in an all volunteer museum setting. Although this one is quite different from -- and substantially older than -- our little museum in Groveland, there are lots of similarities. The real work is done in the basement, with minimal storage room. The quilt boxes fight for space with shelves of koa bowls, china, clothing, the family bible, and artwork from the second half of the 19th century. This is in addition to the whole furnished house that makes up the museum upstairs. There are photo albums, a box of unsorted photographs, CDs with more photographs. The Daughters need a real librarian to organize their meager library -- our HRC library in Groveland is every bit as good for its purpose as the Daughters of Hawaii book collection. The DOH clipping file is far more extensive than the GYGM files, but I suspect the GYGM databases are at least equal to those of DOH.

Now it's decision time. The History Committee meets on Tuesdays. They are a small working group. The Quilting group meets on Wednesdays. They are a social group. I cannot run away for two meetings every week. So do I work for two weeks with the History committee and two weeks with the quilters? Do I pass on the quilting and just do the history work? I don't think so!

Look for good things. Give thanks. Don't forget to pray ....

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Anniversary

It's been two years.  Someone told me early on it gets harder, not easier.  I think she was right.  Numb has worn off.  Reality is not always kind.  

The photo is not the best, but it is here, and one of only a handful of the two of us together.  This was taken in Dec 2005 while visiting Lyla Berg at the Hawaii State Capitol.  

Aloha, Ray.  You're still making a difference in my life, still influencing how I view the world and the people whose lives touch mine.   You always will.  I am so thankful for the time we shared, for the things we learned together, for the things we taught each other.  You made me a better person, more tolerant, more caring, more able to reach out.  You gave me confidence, reminded me to laugh at myself.  I love you.  

Today I am off to the Queen Emma Summer Palace in Nu'uanu to begin as a volunteer with the Daughters of Hawaii.  It's a time for beginnings as well as farewells.  

Give thanks for Ray.  Look for something special he -- or someone else close to you -- added to your life.  Don't forget to pray ....