Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Halfway Over the Pacific

My folks invited us to spend a long weekend in Hawaii and it was the most restful, soul-filling time I've had in a long time. Garett and Wyatt ended up staying home (Perhaps this contributed to the restful part of the weekend?) and my Mom, Dad, brother and I spent four days reading, swimming, snorkeling and eating fresh fish. Over a leisurely meal, we got to hear the slightly more scandalous than we remember story of my parents falling in love. I got to miss my boys which is actually a very good feeling. Swimming in the warm ocean is up there with my favorite activities of all time. There is something so invigorating about the combination of clear saltwater, blazing sun and tropical fish. The last day my dad and I found an area with so many sea turtles that we were literally tripping over them.

My flight home was a little less idyllic. My original flight was scheduled for 2pm on Monday and after a few hours of delays it was cancelled due to mechanical difficulties. I didn't want to have to cancel both of my Tuesday classes so I spent an hour on the phone with a United representative working to get on an 11:45pm US Airways that night. I took a cab back to our rental house and spent another couple of hours in the hammock sipping a Mai Tai. Olifino, my favorite Kona cab driver, picked me up and brought me back to the airport. After checking in curbside and scoring an emergency exit, Economy-Plus seat, I was denied access at the gate because United didn't ticket my seat properly. By this point it was 11:30pm and it was eerily quiet at the airport because all of the desks were closed. I knocked on every door I could find and finally found someone to help me figure out the problem. I called Olifino and he brought me back to the rental and we arranged for him to pick me back up at 6am.
My 8am flight (interestingly the same plane that was cancelled the day before) left on time and I was relieved to finally be headed to the west coast. About two hours into the flight, the pilot calmly told us that "due to engine issues, the flight is turning around and heading back to Kona and that oil is leaking steadily from the engine and turning around is merely a precaution." I probably should have been at least a little bit afraid but all I could think was about the fact that it seemed like we were almost halfway to LA so why couldn't we just keep going. I think this reveals something about my personality. We landed in Kona awhile later, waited another three hours and then got on a plane that made it all the way across the Pacific.
My experience in the Kailua-Kona airport was intensified by the fact that my driver's license was expired and United accidentally re-ticketed me as Amy Strapp. Each trip through the security line resulted in large numbers of airport security workers checking me out and hesitatingly allowing me to proceed to the gates. In addition, I paid $160 to Olifino for four trips back and forth to the airport. The last exciting thing was the gate at the house not working and needing to climb over a 5 foot tall iron gate in a dress three times. Very graceful, I must say.
The trip was a gift and I'm thankful that we enjoy being together. I am especially appreciative that we can still laugh so hard my cheeks get sore and that we are learning how to cry and be honest when we're feeling sad. Thanks, Mom and Dad!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sheep and Swine

Last week Wyatt's class took a trip to Cal Poly to check out the sheep and swine units. We've never been before and he loved it. We got to pet a lamb born two hours before we got there and hear a baby pig squeal very loud. We also got to bring home a little wool.

Saturday, March 19, 2011


As we've reflected on Wyatt's birthday party, he has informed me that he wants a hyena party next year. Seriously, a hyena party. He wants me to call the baker (my mom's friend, Shelley) to make sure she can make a hyena cake. I'm not sure he could pick a more violent creature. My wild boy and his love of wild animals... I want to celebrate his wild spirit just not at the supermarket or when we're crossing a busy street.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Wyatt's Wild Wolf Party

Wyatt turned three on Saturday and since December he's been asking for a wolf party. We obliged even though we weren't really sure what that meant. It's always a treat to have friends and family under the same roof and even my Grandpa (known as Bumpa to Wyatt) joined us.
This is my mom and dad sporting very cool wolf t-shirts.
My dad pulling around Wyatt on the cake box.
Here is the pitch perfect wolf cake. Thank you, Mom! After singing Happy Birthday, we all let out a celebratory howl.
Garett created this wolf den and we hope to enjoy it for years to come.
Notice the wolf mask that our friends Uma and Marissa shared with us for decoration. So special.
This is a cape made by an especially creative and talented friend Molly. Wyatt already believes he's a super hero and this cape only strengthens his resolve. It's reversible, lined with Superman fabric and closes with two snaps to prevent an itchy neck. What a perfect gift for my wild three year old boy.

My sister-in-law came for the party and we welcomed Coco, her new white German Shepherd puppy, into the family. She fit right in.
Wyatt is a boy with gusto and he brings enthusiasm to nearly all situations. Passion for garbage trucks, finding a jackpot of earthworms and wanting to play and win the "spot and name construction equipment" car game, the things he loves, he loves. It's a joy to see him discover, imagine and create and I'm looking forward to seeing what three brings. For the record, I'm still happy to see him age and continue to be thankful that we've made it this far. 15 years to go?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


I want to do a few blogs about a very meaningful long weekend with my folks and brother in Hawaii and a return flight that turned around halfway over the Pacific due to "engine issues" but until I do, here's a conversation that took place at our dinner table tonight.

Me: How was school today?

Wyatt: Today, Xander and me were walking and Derrick was behind us and then I said fight.

Me: Let's thank God for our food. "Dear God, Thank you for our food. Please bring us your peace. Amen." (As a violence-averse mother, I could not bring myself to ask a follow-up question.)

Garett: So, tell me about about that Wyatt.

Wyatt: Today, Xander and me were walking and Derrick was behind us and then I said fight!

Garett: Wyatt, what do you mean by fight?

Wyatt: Like when someone comes to my birthday party.

Me: Do you mean invite?

Wyatt: Yes, Mommy, invite, like when Derrick comes to my party.