Monday, March 31, 2008

Still More Hana

Here we have blue pool, the red sand beach (a really cool sort of hidden but not secret beach) and Hamoa beach. Hamoa is one of my most favorite beaches of Maui. Great waves for playing and body surfing and great water. Soft sand and. . .well, it is awesome. We took dinner there both nights and had a great time watching Amy's kids get pounded in the huge waves. We got a little tumbled ourselves. I was so impressed with her kids! Those waves were big and bad and they didn't hesitate. They were begging us to come in with them and didn't even want to get out for food. There was black sand everywhere. LOVE!

More Hana

We normally camp at Waianapanapa State Park but we really lucked out this time. Some of Amy's neighbors own property in Hana and they let us camp there. They had a large grass area, a small kitchen/living room/shower that was covered and even a jacuzzi. It was so fun to have a private area for ourselves and a shelter from the rain. So, yeah, you can't really call it true camping but we slept in a tent!
We did go to Waianapanapa and did a little hike. We played on the black sand beach and swam in the freshwater caves with water-proof headlamps. Technically, I did not swim in the caves. I have jumped in the frigid water several times but the caves creep me out. I watched the babies and got eaten by bugs instead.



We had such a great time camping in Hana for two nights this weekend. We went with (surprise!) the Anderson's and Brian and Makena (neighbors of Troy and Amy) met us out there on Friday. Brynn, Brian's wife, was sick and couldn't come. She sure missed out, we had such a good time. . .for the most part. Lily was GRUMPY! Those dang upper molars finally decided to cut through. She was having a hard time (and thus, so was I!) but we did see some beautiful things. Chris and I love to go to Hana. We feel like we are on a different island! We try to go every few months and camp. Hana is on the East side of Maui, on the other side of Haleakala (the big mountain). Hana town is a very small town on the rain-forest side of Maui but is surrounded by hikes, hidden pools, waterfalls and beaches. "The Road to Hana" is a famous tourist attraction but I think people rush it. They try to drive to Hana and back in one day. I really think it is best appreciated over several days. Here are some shots from our most recent trip.

Blue Pool: Chris and I have never hiked to Blue Pool before. There are a million "no trespassing" and "turn around! Kapu!" signs but we ignored them and we are so glad we did! Blue Pool is on public land, so we weren't really being naughty. It still felt a little rebellious driving past all the signs, which maybe added to the fun.


Could it be a party at the Nilsson home without the Andersons? No. No it could not. Cute, cute Ember.

How do I get on that wall? Carl (our curmudgeonly landlord) almost had a heart attack watching the kids walk on those walls. Poor Carl.

Zinny got a little sleepy. . .

We had a great Easter. I planned a baby Easter egg hunt for some little girls Lily's age. There are four little ones within 2 months of Lily's age but only one of them could come! We ended up with more big kids than small but it turned out great. The big kids like the eggs more anyway. It was fun to see Lily and Zinnia run around with their bags and us trying to encourage them to pick up the eggs!

The Dress

I finally finished a sewing project. It didn't even take that long but I usually fail on the execution. I am more of an idea girl. But I did finish this one a couple of weeks before Easter and she even wore it to church. The skirt is a little crooked but that can be fixed. . . . . . . .later. (yes, I just invented a new punctuation mark. It is the 8 point ellipsis. I call it the eeeeeeellipsis. I like it.)

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Sand in Your Eyes

I swear she did this herself. Just plopped down on the sand and put her hands behind her head to soak up some sweet rays.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

To Shave a Cat

I think for the next few posts, as long as I can keep it up or I forget to do it, I will try to title my posts as potential band names. Of course, anything could be a potential band name. However, now you will think of it that way and it will be more fun. Is that confusing? I am watching "Quarterlife" online while I type this and it is making my whole life more confusing. No mystery why it was canceled. Darn writer's strike is making me drop my standards. I NEEEED A NEW SHOW. Really, how hard would it be to bring Kristen Bell back for VM season four? How hard? I mean 'Lipstick Mafia?' Really? I think there is another show just like that on another station.
I did catch a few minutes of 'Miss Guided' last night. I am going to predict this as my new fav. It has that girl from '13 Going On 30' in it. She is funny.

But I digress.

To shave a cat, all you really need are clippers and motivation fueled by your intense disgust at his ever mangy coat. Or 50 bucks then someone can do it for you. Normally, I as cheap as they come, especially when it comes to paying for something that I can do for myself. I shelled out the 50 bucks for this one and it was worth every penny. Lily and the cat both freak out when I bring out the brush and scissors so it was easier on everyone. Lily was thrilled that the cat could come in the car and that we took him to "get a bath" and that she got to see a dog. The whole time we were downtown waiting for the cat to lose his dreads, Lily kept saying "Numanuma [meow meow, her word for cat] bath. Numanuma bath!" this done with the sign for bath over and over and over. Very cute.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Part Two

Last week I issued a challenge. After overwhelming response (and great songs!) I think I may have to do that more often!
I know this is really pushing the deadline, but I have been really having a hard time picking songs. It was awesome to listen to my old stuff, new stuff, look at lyrics more closely and spend Lily's nap times listening to music, music, music. So, as promised, here is my personality profile.

Just a reminder:

1. A song about a trait inherited from Dad.
2. A song about a trait inherited from Mom.
3. A song about a trait you learned from someone.
4. A song about a trait that is unique to you.
5. A song about how people perceive you. (I agree, Erin, how do you really know? This was the hardest one for me to identify)

1. Magazine Pedro the Lion

2. Pies Patty Griffin

3. All the Way From Italy The Greencards

4. Elsewhere Sarah McLaughlin OR Asleep On A Sunbeam Belle & Sebastion

5. Lately Tegan and Sara

I loved Stephanie's post because she explained all her songs. What an insight! Here are my 'splanations:

1. My dad is a deep thinker. I don't pretend to have inherited his depth of thought but I love thinking about, talking about and writing about religion, physics, space, time, and how these all work together or might work together or could work together if things were only slightly different. You get the picture.
Also this song reminds me a lot of Lehi's dream. I didn't inherit that from my dad but Lehi was a dad.

2. My mom blessed me with a love of baking, food and everything culinary. This song is more than that. It is more accurately about finding the good in a crappy situation and enduring those crappy situations by thinking of the things or people you love. I am not even close to as good at this as my mother, but I think I did get a little bit of her silver lining.

3. I am not brave. I don't take chances. I usually go for the safest bet. Many people have taught me to be brave-r but I think it will be a life lesson. I love that this song is about moving far away and the courage that takes. I really relate to that.

4. Elsewhere is partly about enjoying solitude. There are several things I enjoy doing alone that most people prefer doing with company. Among these are: Seeing a movie in the theater, shopping, okay that is all I can think of right now. . .but still, I appreciate alone time.
Asleep On a Sunbeam? Just your good ol' "I love the outdoors and dirt" song.

I had a REALLY hard time with this one. I found a lot of songs about traits I have but none of them were really unique to me. I don't even think these ones are very unique, but it is the best I could do.

5. I think this one is self-explanatory. I think we are all too hard on ourselves.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

For Mom

Monday, March 10, 2008

Music. . .And You Thought I Forgot

I like to think of myself as the camel of blogging. I may not do it everyday but every so often I hit an oasis and I stock up.

My sister just called me with the coolest psychology assignment ever. Please note that it is closing in on 1 am for her and this is due tomorrow. Crazy girl.

The assignment: Personality CD

5 songs

1. a song about a trait you inherited from your father
2. a song about a trait you inherited from your mother
3. a song about a trait you learned from someone else
4. a song about how others see you.
5. a song about a trait that is unique to you.

She then has to write a paragraph 'spalining her self.

I had so much fun doing this with her. Had I been given a week to help her it still would not have been enough time. I was pouring through my itunes, digging out old CDs, searching song lyrics and song meanings, asking Chris, and just loving it. Tori was fading fast as she waited on the phone as I played yet another 'I totally love this song!' that had no relevance to her assignment. We had to hurry so we didn't do as thorough a job as we should/could have but here are the results for Tori:

1. Studying Stones Ani DiFranco
2. Answer Sarah McLachlan
3. Fairytale Sara Bareilles
4. Stand Still Look Pretty The Wreckers
5. Whatever You Want Vienna Teng

As you can see, Tori loves the girl power as much as I do. I soooooo want to do this for myself but I don't have enough time to think about it before this Monday ends. So, here is the deal. Everyone do it. All y'all (I think the count is up to 5 now. . .Ali and Mindy commented on my blog so I am counting them as readers) do the assignment. Yes, it is a pointless exercise but so is surfing and you don't see my boards on Craig's list. Do it. DO IT.

Oh and for Erin and Claudia:

Nickel Creek
James Taylor
Phantom Planet
Dashboard Confessional
Heather Nova
Red West
Ben Kweller
Ben Folds
This is just off the top of my head. There are much much much more. So there. (insert raspberry)

Making Up For Lost Time

photo wise

I have been slacking on the photographs lately. It has been a lot of yak yak yak. So here you go. Here are shots from the last 2 weeks. Enjoy.

My new favorite way to do her hair.
What? Not all my posts can be emotionally charged?

I was washing dishes a couple of weeks ago and heard Lily squeal in her "I've done something awesome and probably naughty" way. I turned around and she was standing on the table.

Kaia, Cannon, Lily. The Three Muskateers. Cannon and Kaia are the ones I have the most often. They are very cute and they take care of their little lady, Lily.

Water Play! This day I had four! Isabelle came over and we had a full house. I set up a little water station, they painted with pudding and fun was had by all!

Pooh, Peanut Butter and Packs. or Lily Licks and Loves Her Lamb

Lily found this old fabric backpack and I put in on her. Then she went into her room and pulled this hat out of her drawer and put in on by herself. She then wanted to go outside. To me, it looked like she was off to seek her fortune. "Bye Mom, thanks for the backpack. . .I can take it from here."
Oh, and of course the pack had Lamby in it. Never leave home without your lamb.

Lily loves little more than sitting on the counter and 'helping' me cook. This day it was peanut butter cookies. We used all the peanut butter and so I had left the empty jars out on the counter where we were cooking. When I turned around to put the cookies on the pan, Lily grabbed the jars and started cleaning them out and licking her fingers. Think Winnie The Pooh and the Honey Pot. Luckily, she kept it up long enough for me to get a few shots.

Same story. Different day. Flour.

Cute As a BUTTon

When I am out like this I take a ton of pictures hoping to capture that cute moment (I never do). I don't know how I managed to get two sets of cheeks in this one! And without even trying!!
This is Kaia, Lily and Raina (random child at the beach. . .on vacation)


After the beach


Isabelle, Kaia, Cannon, Lily

Cannon and Lily (today)

It's What You Know

In my previous post I:

used the word 'something' twice in one sentence

used the word 'stranger' to mean more strange

This list will get longer, I am sure. If you have any keen sights, let me know. I reread my post and was a little ashamed, but rather than edit them out, I decided to create an entire new post dedicated to my mistakes to let you in reader land know that I know thus making it no longer a mistake. You know?

Pain, May I Pour You a Glass? Just Half You Say?

I changed my blog template again for several reasons:

1. The old one wouldn't let me post from my blog page.

2. The old one had a monogram. An 'I' and an 'S' intertwined. I have no idea what this means but I was starting to worry that it was something like a porn icon or something. Like when my grandma gave my cousin a Heineken key chain at our family reunion. It had a bottle opener and everything.

3. Today, I needed something lighter.

March 9, 2007 I woke up and my right knee was so swollen I couldn't put pants on or put any weight on it. After 2 weeks of scooting around on the floor (with baby in arms) I decided it was off to the doctor I go. It turned out to be off to the doctors (emphasis on the plural) and the medical mystery that is my body has only gotten stranger.
I don't think that it is like me to complain, particularly not publicly like this, but having the one year anniversary of the death of my health behind me, I thought I was due for a little good old fashioned whining.
The funny thing about Rheumatoid Arthritis, and I don't mean funny 'ha ha' but funny like 'that tuna smells funny, should it really stay out on the dashboard like that?', is that it really isn't arthritis at all. Sure your joints swell up like birthday balloons, but it isn't because your joints are worn (that's OSTEO-arthritis, in case you go on Jeopadry) it is an auto-immune response. Swelling in the joints is just one of the marvelous symptoms that comes with.
I read yesterday that people who vent actually stay angrier longer than those who don't. Unfortunately, I just secured my pointy hat and spun around three times with donkey tail in hand, so I am going to pity party like it's 1999. You can stop reading now, or here, strap on a hat and start blowing up balloons.
I guess I thought I was used it. It is easy to get used to a chronic condition when it goes into remission (a rhyme!). After Lily was born I think my hormones turned a switch and through my body into make-up-for-lost-time mode. I don't remember ever being this sick and certainly not for an entire year. I think that is the hardest part for me. The time, and not having an end date. Being pregnant is hard but you know in 9 months it is going to end. Having the flu is horrible but you know it is going to end in a week or two. Bruising my duodenum hurt A LOT but even that, I knew, would heal. This time, I know it won't. And that is the hardest part.
Pain and depression are best friends. They like to have camp-outs. Mostly in the backwoods of my body. Pain came first and I thought: "I hate you. But I can tolerate you for a bit". But, like fish and company, after a few weeks, he overstayed his welcome and what's worse? He brought his little pal with him.
I think I am on the upswing now. I feel like I am in the 'acceptance' phase of grieving my health. I know I will have to grieve it again, and again, but honestly, I wasn't nearly as cranky yesterday as I thought I would be. I have had two close friends and a grandfather pass away and I cannot tell you one of their death dates. March 9, however, has been burned in my mind like the Pearl Harbor of my own life. I really anticipated being a mess. I imagined myself crying, reminiscing about off-road 10K's I used to run and staying in bed all day. Instead, I woke up, printed off my hand-out for young women and went to church. Just like every Sunday. I remember in April thinking "I can't believe I have been invalid for an entire month! I can't do this one more month, if I am not better my May, I am just going to die!" May, June, July, August, September, October, November and so on. And I still wake up at night because of pain.
I can say, looking back on the year, that I have improved. I can drive, walk, swim and even surf (sort of) now. I won't be running anywhere anytime soon, but most days I can walk without a noticeable limp and I have even started playing the guitar a little, again.
I have to interject here, that yes, I know that other people, most people, have far worse problems than I do. I know this. I really do. I also know what a great life I have. But today is my day to feel sorry for ME. I deserve at least one a year. I know, now that I can make it another month like this. I know I could do it another year, and I am prepared for that possibility being great. However, to keep Pain happy while he lives with me a little longer, I had to compromise. I let his best friend, Depression, come over for a tea party once a month or so and we all strap on hats and make a day of it.
When I was young, I would hear inspirational stories of people who lost limbs in accidents but remained so positive and motivated. I always thought I would be one of those people. If I ever lost a leg, I would start a peg-leg polka society or something like that. I wouldn't let it get me down. It really goes to show that you never really know how hard something is until you live it. Or how you will react. Huh, maybe I have learned something from this year!

Sorry for the downer. Thanks for the love. Oh, and could you leave your hats? I think I might need them again next March.

Monday, March 3, 2008

What Fun is Blogging if You Can't Pretend People Live and Breathe On Your Every Word

Catchy titles are overrated. Plus it is late.

Well it is still Monday here in the islands for a couple more hours, and you know what that means: my weekly post. I had intended to have A Fine Frenzy be this Monday's feature. 22 year old Alison Sudol has been playing nonstop in my house for the last two weeks. 13 year old Megan Kirton is to thank for that. I drive her carpool 2-3 times a week. Remember the Paris traveling, Sprecklesvillians of blogs past? The same. Stay on message. Erin, who makes up a good 25% of my blog readers, was kind enough to suggest A Fine Frenzy to me as well on Saturday. Well frack! (I have been re-watching Veronica Mars S3 lately) now a good quarter of my faithful readers already know and love (probably more than myself) the band I wanted to show and tell. Which means that another 50% of my readers also listen to AFF already.
Then I thought "get over yourself! You have learned of most of your music favs from the Hensel's. Who cares if they already know? Does it always have to be something new? No! Why can't we collectively bask in the beautiful melodies and poetic lyrics of Almost Lover, You Picked Me, and Rangers? Plus, what else do you have?" I literally have been listening to nothing else. I haven't practiced enough (ahem, at all) to play at Marc Aurel tonight, so that is out, and in the end, I am really taking my blog waaaaaaaaaaaay too seriously and this sentence needs to end but I am struggling to find a way to wrap it up. There. I did it.
So here it is. A Fine Frenzy. Yes, that was an working title for this blog entry, but how predictable! Also, to add a little spice: keep your calendar clear for a very special reunion tour coming this June.

Youtube is not working. Now nothing is working. Hmph. Look it up yourself. I will try again tomorrow.

Love and Aloha to all.