Posts Tagged ‘hawaii’

Phoenix… We have a Problem!

January 15, 2017

My parents were blessed to spend New Years in Maui with my sister and her family, relaxing on the beach and enduring the rooster calls on the island. Being the kind and thoughtful daughter, I volunteered for pick-up duty on their arrival home. When they booked the tickets, I remember hearing the return date as January 11th, a date that coincides with a special occasion for one of my nieces, who is from Maui. I thought it coincidental that the dates matched.

Calling my brother, who had taken them for their departure, I wanted to confirm the airline and flight time. All was good. Here’s my sticky note.

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I feel the need to point out the extent of my niceness. That 6:49 is A.M. The airport is 30 miles from our house in the same direction all the Phoenix metro traffic heading downtown. Big fat bumper-to-bumper bummer.

Before I volunteered for o’dark-thirty parent retrieval, I checked with all driving family members to see if it was “more convenient” for someone else to go. Nope. Two had to go to work and one to band class. The glitch in this scenario is that our daughter had to be to her reading specialist at 8:00 a.m. From experience, I knew that I couldn’t make it back from the airport in time to take her and I didn’t want to wake her up at 5:15 a.m. either. The princess needs her sleep.

I called a faithful friend who also has a child in the reading class and asked if Nora could sleep over at her house. Sure! That’s what friends are for. I delivered her to her pajama party late on Tuesday night.

My alarm, which incidentally is only set a few times a year, blasted it’s jovial wake-up tune at 5:15 a.m. Please remember at this time that I am a homeschool mom. One of the top reasons we homeschool is so we can get the rest we need… i.e.: we sleep in…. almost every day.

I threw on sweats, brushed my teeth and hair, and went out the front door into the chilly AZ air. Brrrr… in the low 50s. Black skies laughed at me. I am always surprised when it is dark in the morning, for I rarely see this phenomenon.

Traffic wasn’t bad at all and I pulled into the parkade with 15 minutes to spare. After making mental notes of the level and parking area, I checked the screens for arrival times. 412 from Kahului just landed….6:28. Early! Good. This should go quickly. My comfy bed might even still be warm when it welcomes me back!

If you have ever landed at Sky Harbor in Phoenix, you may be aware of the dual runways and the occasional need to taxi for 15 minutes to get to your gate. It adds to the suspense of deplaning. Thankfully I remembered this little tidbit and was not alarmed by a 20 minute delay between the landing time and seeing weary travelers in Hawaiian shirts getting off the red-eye flight. Finally several vacationers trudged by wearing neck pillows and carrying pale green Hawaiian Cookie Company bags. I was a tad alarmed when I didn’t see my very own weary parents. There was no way I could have missed them walking by. There is only one gate for them to come out of. I was there the whole time. But they didn’t show up.

Baggage claim is right down stairs from where I had been sitting for 30 minutes. I decided to take a trip down there to see if Dad and Mom teleported from the plane to the baggage area. Nope. All the Hawaiian shirts were sitting on the floor awaiting their tardy suitcases.

Back upstairs I went… a bit concerned. Could something have happened to one of them on the plane? I called both their cell numbers several times. Both went straight to voicemail. I didn’t want to call my sister to see if she put them on the plane because it was 3:45 in the morning in Maui. I called my husband who was across the tarmac in his office. “I can’t find my parents,” I lamented. He comforted me by telling me they were probably just lost. Great! Where do I report missing persons?

My husband suggested checking my text messages again from Maui. I opened up my brother-in-law’s message and it read, “Mom and Dad arrive Thursday morning at 6:49.” Big fat early morning bummer. It was Wednesday.

Their flight WAS on the 11th of January… but arrived on the 12th of January. I was 24 hours early. I decided not to wait for them at the airport.

A Starbucks caramel apple cider soothed my weary soul before I left the terminal. After handing over my $5.00 for parking and I was on my way home to my snuggly bed.

(In a couple weeks I am scheduled to pick up my niece ON THIS SAME FLIGHT! Hopefully I will get it right next time.)

 

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Still a California Girl

November 15, 2016

Last time I visited my sister on Maui, the kids would do their schooling in the morning then I would excitedly announce right after lunch, “Let’s go to the beach!” because we were in Maui. DUH! Why would you sit in the house, even if you live here? Several faces turned and looked at me as if I had horns coming out of my head then uttered ridiculous comments such as, “Now?” and “Why?” and “It’s too late” and my personal favorite: the glance to the clock and then the look of confusion on their faces.

It was 1:00 in the afternoon. Warm weather. White sand. Waves rolling just two blocks away. I did not understand the problem. At all. We had an afternoon stretching out in front of us with NOTHING to do. WHY AREN’T WE GOING TO THE BEACH!?!?

“Well, it’s kind of late in the day.” Um, no. It’s 1:00.

“It gets windy in the afternoon.” Um, yes. And doesn’t that feel good breaking up the warm air?

“We usually go early in the morning.” Um, that hasn’t happened since I arrived a week ago. So let’s go now!

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Fast forward to today. Nora, the Hawaiian Colombian princess, and I sat on Wailea Beach with the afternoon sand blasting our faces. It was a tad windy. Okay, more like gusting to 57 knots, whatever that means. Prayers were being sent heavenward that our orange beach umbrella wouldn’t do a Mary Poppins and fly away. After all the spaces between my teeth were filled with sand, we made the decision to pack up after only 45 minutes on the beautiful white sand beach.

As we drove away, I started thinking about my senior year of high school when I spent every Wednesday on the beach in Santa Cruz, California with my friend Kendle. We would drive over 17 after my only class and be on the beach by 10:30 a.m. The Maui mentality probably would have worked back then because we would lie under our beach towels until the fog burned off. It was freezing, but we could say we went to the beach every week… all year long.

Maybe this is why I find afternoons perfect for beach time? Maybe it’s because every time we get to the Maui beaches in the afternoon there are other people there? I am not the only one who thinks afternoons are perfect for lazy beach sitting.

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Today’s beach adventure was saved when we drove past Wailea to Mekena State Park, home to Big Beach. Although there were clouds, the wind was mild. The waves were relatively calm and the beach was, well, BIG. We spent the afternoon staring at the water and the sand and the insides of our eyelids.

My new mantra is ANY TIME IS BEACH TIME! Come on, people, this ain’t the main land.

THE Souvenir of Choice

November 6, 2016

My sweet girl has a challenge spending money. I do not share this challenge with her. At all. I do not really even understand how anyone can suffer from this. But over the past six years I have seen that the struggle is REAL!

Nora suffers from pre-buyers remorse. She will pick out a craft kit, or a shirt, or a bag of chips that she wants more than life itself. She will carry it around the store for an hour talking about how much she needs this item in her life and how it is her most favoritist in the whole galaxy. Then right before she is to lay it on the counter to pay for it, she decides to NOT buy it and sets it down. (I apologize to those who have “put it back where it goes” OCD issues.)

Being the loving, kind and compassionate parents that we are, we have forced her to buy these items more than once with her own money. It is not large sums. Nothing over $5, trying to show her that it is okay to purchase stuff. Kindheartedly we are helping her over this stumbling block in her life…. we hope.

Once in Justice (the animal-print-glitter-bling-bling palace of the universe) she had $75 in gift cards and $25 cash in her wallet. We spent more than an hour and a half in that teenie-bopper haven trying on every blinkin’ thing she could find, while her dad made dance videos to the store music on snapchat to the amusement of myself and all the other mothers and daughters. Nora picked out several shirts, a dress, a skirt and some shorts. When it was all added up at the cash register, the total came to $78.35. SEE THE PROBLEM?!?!?

Nora started figuring out what to put back to get it under $75 so she wouldn’t have to spend any cash. The glitter and bling *may have* gotten to my husband at some point because he grabbed her wallet and pulled out $4 and threw it on the counter. It was a bit dramatic for him, in my opinion. Nora’s brown eyeballs about fell out of her head. I’m not sure if this was a healthy way to teach our daughter that spending is okay, but that is how it went down and we are all still alive.

Fast forward to this week in Maui where she has been diligently searching for the souvenir to beat all souvenirs for herself. She has admired purple t-shirts, capri sweats pants that say MAUI down the leg, brown plastic slippers, magnets in the shape of Maui, calendars full of beautiful Hawaiian scenery, pineapple scented soap, rings with silver turtles, even coconut shells with candles in them. But with pre-buyers remorse, nothing had been purchased until today… day #7 on the island.

I still can’t figure out why the wooden pocket knife was the winning prize, but there was no pre- or post-buyers remorse! Nora showed it to me in the store and I was thinking she was buying it for one of her brothers or her dad. Nope. When I asked who it was for and she happily answered, “Me!” I did one of those mom-you-are-embarassing-me loud bursts of laughter that involuntarily slip out of my lips. Ooops.

I found it hilarious that my 13-year-old daughter who loves make up and painting her nails would be sucked in by a knife! A KNIFE! For Pete’s sake and all that is holy.

She is THRILLED with her wooden sided, engraved, Hawaiian Islands pocket knife. Makes me giggle just thinking of how perfect she thinks it is! And she paid $7 without beating an eyelash!

Pushy parent progress is being made!

 

Maui Mama, Country Road…. Take Me Home!

August 24, 2012

First let me begin with professions of blog guilt….. AUGUST 12!!!  The last blog.  Wow!  No wonder I feel like I was hit by a truck.  I just blew by 12 days without blinking. I have excellent excuses reasons for my absence, which I shall name for personal vindication: nine-day work detail at my sister’s house (more on that later), one missed flight, almost-time-for-homeschool-to-start jitters, my brain in a fog… OK, that is all.

Yes, my baby sister, (who is 41) has had a disturbance in the force.  Her happy, carefree life in the suburbs of Vancouver, Washington is coming to a close on Tuesday, August 28th when she embarks on the journey of a lifetime.  The journey many of us only dream of…. moving to Maui.  Yes, the Hawaiian island known for its beauty and luscious beaches.  The surroundings sound all wonderful and glorious, but this is a lifestyle change taken on only by the brave of heart.

Selling out.  Yes, to God’s call on your life.  Yes, to the stuff in the house.  Moving from 2200 square feet to probably half that, leaves room for many trips to Goodwill.  Baby Sister is the least hoarder in our family, but still, she’s married with three kids and a dog and life in suburbia lends itself to excess.  My arrival in WA (leaving the hottest week of the year in Phoenix, THANK GOD!!!) corresponded with the setting up of the massive garage sale that went down in two days as the most successful garage sale of all time.  The amount of STUFF that sold was remarkable.  The Lord sent people to the sale who loved the color red, were sucked in by half-filled cans of spray paint and needed more Christmas decor.  Seriously.  Even the yard swing that is covered in moss was dismantled and removed for $25.  Really???  Yes.

Once again, I quote my mantra, “What God favors, He funds.”

After the sale packing commenced.  In one day, we packed 63 boxes.  Then we sat on the couch and stared at Craft Wars for two days…. which was only supposed to be one day, but I was pretty darn sure my flight home was on Wednesday.  Turns out it was Tuesday.  Oops.  My nine-year-old nephew labeled me a “hard worker” and that was all the praise and adoration I needed.  My job was done. I am home.

And what does this all boil down to for ME?  A dazzling vacation opportunity.  YES!