Amid all other influences

Amid all other influences
"reaching for the light"

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Remembering Birthdays

Happy Birthday Nikki!

The year seems to be going by fast! We've had a few grandchildren birthdays since the first of the year. Catching up can be a huge task, especially trying to remember whose birthday was on which day. Anyway, in January, we had Ethan and Christian.

Let's see, Pookie has been doing well and from the sounds of his mom's blog, he is leading an active life. So, the picture here is a before and recent.

Of course, reading the little tidbits of joyful interaction of the rest of the family, I certainly enjoy the little people goings on at Minot.

Then there's our eldest grandson Christian. He was eight years old and was baptized by his dad. Little Buddy is active and very helpful to his parents. The best part I like is his example to his younger sisters. Way to go Christian!

In February, we had older birthdays to celebrate

with Jase, Jesse, and Troy. Now how old are you guys?

But this month of March, we've been blessed with the birthdays of granddaughter Anna, grandsons, George and Henry, and daughter Nicole. So, to remember their impact on our lives, here they are.

Above is Anna in the middle, between cousins Klailea and Henry

This picture of Princess Anna was taken last year outside their home in WA. As you can see, she's a pretty girl.

Here is our second grandson George. He turned six a week ago. He's enjoying school and doing well. He's talented and won an award in school. See his mom's blog for more update on George. Needless to say, we too are proud of George and how well he is doing.

From the look of this picture, one can only come to the conclusion that a boy who enjoys watermellon as seen here is happy and joyful. When we talk on the phone, he's always been cheerful and exciting. He's developed his conversation skills quite well and is very intelligent. I guess Henry can't wait to start school when he's old enough. As his Grandma would always ask, "Are you still my buddy?" He'd reply with a resounding "YES!"

Here is a recent picture of the island travellers, Henry and George. Now that they have a little brother, Theodore, they both help their mom when she calls. Of course, sometimes boys will get doing rough and tumble activities. I can just imagine in a couple of years when Theodore gets in the act also. Anyway, they too are among the bright grandchildren we've been blessed with.

Here was the last family picture we took in Hawaii. Of course, we've been back but never all together. And now, there are much more of us.

So, I hope these pictures down memory lane will bring back a memory or two to everyone.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

A Missionary to The MTC
"Good Time to Get Together"
We don't get many family visitors but it's such a special time, especially to see Jarom leave for his mission - Rome Italy Mission. This time though, my sister and brother in-law accompanied their youngest son to Utah. As you know, it's such a special purpose and since this was their last son, they couldn't miss this opportunity.

Here are Danelle and Aley at BYU. See the mountains and the blue skys.

I know they really enjoyed their time here. They have such busy schedules with their own responsibilities, this trip was a real blessing. We really enjoyed their visit and had a great time

Here are the Priesthood Circle at Jarom's being set apart as a missionary. We had Jarom's uncles, (me, Lance, and Fia), Former Hilo Stake President John Sakamaki, and President Malan Jackson, Aley's former Mission President, Taipei Taiwan, Jarom and Aley. It was a distinguished group.

This is a group shot of the guest and family members. Jarom is with two local Polynesians who are preparing to go on their mission. It was fun to get a group shot of everyone who attended that evening.

Aley and Danelle getting ready to go to the airport.

Danelle and I.

Today we had Stake conference at the historic Provo Tabernacl. The stained glass look so great I had to get a picture. Anyway, we certainly enjoyed the conference there.

Jo and I are standing below the choir loft with the pipe organ in the background. It was a lovely day and would have been better if we didn't have to turn our clocks ahead an hour. Now I have to reset the clocks on everything we have. I've been having difficulty with our VCR's and stuff. Well, I'll figure it out before we have to turn it back an hour. Bye.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Hey, you like go eat my house?

We've been having a great time with Aley, my sister Danelle, and nephew Elder Jarom. Since our family visits are few and far inbetween, we're making the most of the time. Jo and Danelle have visited the famous landmarks such as the DI's, Provo, AF, and Sandy, the outlet mall, and both University Mall and Provo Town Mall. While Jarom has been visiting his friends up at BYU, its been busy last few days. On Wednesday he goes into the MTC. We look forward to his success and spiritual growth.
Aley and Danelle and their family live in "Paradise" and we in Zion, its almost a contradiction, dreams vs. reality. Now some of our children live in Paradise, while some live in exotic places such as Minot, ND. and Ephrata, WA, or Elkton, MD. Which one is the "lone and dreary world?"
Living on the mainland has many blessings, much of it available for a price. By the same token, there is a price for "Paradise." It all depends on what you value most.
The cold winters on the mainland, or dry brown looking hills and mountains makes us want to be in that tropical paradise of Hawaii. When you are required to purchase a fishing license to fish in the rivers and lakes, thats not like going to the ocean and casting your line and bait for the fish to take a bite. Some of us miss the fragrance of the flowers, or the foods, a blend of cultures. How exciting? To be within reasonable distance from the beach for a family outing, a bit of sun and fun, that is a benefit of living in Paradise.
By contrast, there is more room to roam on the mainland and realize your not back in the same starting spot in a couple of hours if you head out on the road. When we go shopping for groceries, we can easily buy items in large bulk size for very reasonable prices. That makes shopping less frequent and great for storage. The price of groceries are a bargain on the mainland as compared to the islands. Then there is the rising cost of fuel, here we complain that the price rose a couple of cents since the last time we filled up. At least we don't have to take out a consumer loan to fill our tanks up. Just check out the price at the pump in Paradise. There are much more cost savings available on the mainland. That is the price for Paradise.
Our traffic here has been getting worse. Let's say that there are more vehicles out on the road at any one time. People got to get where the're going. But there is a price for that, it's called rude, selfish, drivers who break out in road rage if you cross their path. They drive big 4 X 4's and ride your bumper in an effort to intimidate you to get over to another lane or off the road. The bigger your vehicle, the more right of way you can get. If you are at an intersection, people here believe in divine right that a green light and yellow light, and even a red light means you can proceed if the other guy doesn't jump out. Let me illustrate here. I'm at an intersection and needing to proceed straight ahead when the light turns green. The drivers in the opposite lane making a left turn moves ahead with the green arrow. The arrow color turns from green to yellow and then to red. People are not stopping at the caution of the yellow arrow but go ahead even beyond at least 2 - 3 cars when the light turns to the red arrow. That my friend is called the "divine red light rule." Interpreted it means that the driver was in a long line of cars needing to make the turn but by the time that person got close, the light turned red. Having pity on one self, and determining that waiting another series of lights would be demeaning, that is the self authorization to make that turn that you knew was illegal, but hey, what the heck, if you don't cause an accident, but irritate the on comming traffic, you are allowed at least one of these moves per day. If you explain this to a law enforcement officer in this manner, you would probably be let off with only a warning. After all, we are only trying to be good neighbors, even if we broke the law. We pity ourselves, we aren't polite, or any of that good stuff.
By contrast, in Paradise, people are considerate on the roads, especially at intersections, stop signs, or merging in traffic. They insist that even though there is a monetary price for living in paradise, the experience doesn't have to be unpleasant. So "go ahead bruddah. Have a nice day, and the smile on my face is genuine.
What a difference? I believe its all in what you value most that makes the difference. For the materialistic mainlander, the more you have or the bigger it is, that is the definition of success. For the islander, yes, there is a price for paradise or a piece of the rock, but be happy, help others to be happy, share, and everyone will get along better. Your broke down hale may be standing only because of the happy termites are holding hands, so be thankful. This is another picture of "aloha."
Anyway, the above ramblings are a reflection of wanting to live in both worlds. The bottom line is "you can't live in both worlds, you can only have one, so what is it going to be?
Have a nice day.