Warm Cookies With A Whiskey Chaser

The Perfect Mix of Comfort and Shenanigans

Blogroll Me!
100 Things About Me
Tinmen Don't Dance
Humble Sandwich
A Son from Another Mother; Matt
Auburn Pisces
Splenda In The Grass
the bokey chronicles
Jeffrey Ricker
Rocket Man
The Beauty of All Things
No Milk Please
A Life In The Day
Shadow Footprints
Scott B Blog
Seth Hancock Photography
Famous Author Rob Byrnes
Watersea's Ocean Bloggie
Cheap Blue Guitar
Does This Mean I'm A Grownup?
Upside Down Hippo
Loose Ends

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Joy In The Journey

And That's The Way It Was Posted by Picasa

2005 Happenings

Top Row:
1. Sept: Averie and Jason enjoy fun in the sun in Mexico.
2. May: Caris on stage as “Hedy LaRue” in “How to Succeed in Business.”
3. Dec: A, B, and C hamming it up for the camera.
4. Oct: Homecoming Princess Caris and her escort; Proud Daddy Charlie.

Middle Row:
1. July: Double Shaka Tiki designed by Wes Johnson, owner of House of Tiki where Pua begins a new job with wonderful people who “Live Aloha”.
2. Aug: With the help of her sister Lokelani, and her brother Lono, Pua attends her
family reunion in Hawaii, where ALL 12 siblings are gathered together for the first time.
3. Feb: We bid a tearful goodbye to our beloved Shanahan; lost to cancer at 6 years. She was much loved, is very missed, and will always live on in our hearts.
4. Jan: Charlie and Pua celebrate 25 years together.

Bottom Row:
1. May: Bryson receives the first ever “Golden Shoe Award” for having the dubious honor of being the only student to ever have a shoe thrown at them in class by a teacher. We were :::ahem::: SO proud.
2. Mar: In an attempt to heal our broken hearts from the loss of Shanny, we visit the local Animal shelter and fall in love with a sweet little puppy. We welcome her into our world, name her “Ellie”, and she in turn, loves us right back.
3. Dec: Caris and Mitch help choose a Christmas tree.
4. Dec: Averie receives news that she’s been accepted to Chapman University for Spring transfer, where she’ll pursue dual degrees in English and Theatre.

May ALL Your Days Be Filled With
Special Joys, Happy Memories, Top Shelf Tequila
& All of Life’s Good Blessings

Mele Kalikimaka e Hau’oli Makahiki Hou
With Much Aloha,
Charlie, Pua, Averie, Caris, Bryson & Ellie

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Postscripts & Photocards

The postscript is that for now, Caris is okay. Apparantly, the cardiologist feels that whatever is troubling her frail sensibilities right now, it isn't her heart. Yet....just "to be sure," he feels that it's "a good idea" to put her on a Holter monitor for 24 hours AND get an ultrasound of her heart. So, he said, the good news is that she could go back to school. The bad news is she probably shouldn't drive until after she gets the results from being monitored. I could tell by the look on my daughter's face that she was less than thrilled on both accounts.

I thought that they'd arrange for her to leave with the monitor attached, or installed....whatever the heck it is that they do with it...by the time we left the doctor's office. But instead, they said they'd have to call us when one became available and they couldn't get her in for that ultrasound until the middle of January. Well, okay. We do what we have to do. As the days progressed and Caris felt stronger, the urge the drive came on strong as well. Though I must give her credit; not once did she complain.

On Monday morning, now going on two weeks since we'd seen the cardiologist, and no call to have Caris come back for monitoring, I called the doctor's office. I inquired as to when we might hear from them and was told that I should count my blessings. If they felt that there was really a problem to be concerned about, Caris would have been way up on their priority list. "Wow", I thought. I was merely asking when they thought we might be getting monitored and was summarily reprimanded by a grumpy office administrator. I thanked her for her concern about whether or not I was counting my blessings and wished her a Happy Hanukkah. Then I got off the phone and said a prayer for all the people who really DO have heart problems that have to deal with Ms. Grumpbutt at the cardiologist's office.

As I said, for now Caris is doing okay. All the lab work from the day we took her in came back negative. She doesn't have any blood ailments, no anemia or mono, no diabetes, hypo or hyper, she's not dehydrated. She's recovered from her knock on the head when she fell and Charlie and I are of the opinion that she was simply overworking herself and suffering from "Triple S". Better known to last year high school students and their parents as "Senior Stress Syndrome". Burning the midnight oil for finals, stressing over college applications, not eating right, not sleeping at all...ahhhh, those were the days, huh?

Caris wants me to thank everyone for their comments of support and emails with get well wishes. Ku'uipo, you made us all laugh, especially Caris, with your special card. Charlie said he'd love to send her to you (just so that we can have a break! *wink*)

As for photocards, I did the best I could this year with trying to get the holiday greetings out, but as usual came up short. Short on time, short on money, but not short when I thought of all of you. If you'll forgive me this indulgence, for those of you that didn't get the snail mail version, the above Hello version is my attempt at reaching farther than our pocketbook was able. Much love from afar and joy in the journey...since you've all been with us all the way.

Friday, December 16, 2005


I've spent a great deal of time pondering within myself exactly how much time I DON'T have lately. There's been no time to decorate for the holidays and as a result, there has been a poor, lonely Christmas tree sitting in the middle of my living room with a single strand of lights around the bottom only. I keep giving it water hoping that it will hold on until I can get to it. I've been struggling with a sick stomach for a week since getting what I believe to be a nasty case of food poisoning, making it completely undesireable to do the kind of baking that I'd usually be doing (or have done) by this time. I have gone through the "Poor Me" thoughts of late, never letting the words pass my lips or risking the appearance of being a complainer, but honestly, I have overindulged in that department. I've not perled or knitted a single stitch, I've not painted, or written, or done any of the things I love. I've been working and wondering if my little paycheck will be enough. The one thing I did accomplish was putting together our Christmas card, but as I went about the "business" of doing it, the demon thoughts in the back of my head swirled around and told me that I shouldn't be taking time for such frivolity. I have been ignoring the joys that have been so obvious in front of me. I have fallen headlong into the tyranny of the urgent.

That was before Tuesday morning, when I saw my daughter lying on my kitchen floor, unconscious, white as a sheet, lips quivering. I heard the commotion as I lay in my bed in that space between awake and asleep. I heard Charlie yelling Caris' name and I thought that he was upset because she had overslept again. But when I heard him scream her name a second time, I knew it was more than just that. When he burst through our bedroom door shouting at me that Caris had just passed out on the kitchen floor, I bolted into the NOW and ran. There I found him, kneeling over her and trying to keep Ellie from jumping on her (she thought we were all playing a game). I got down on the floor next to her and felt her face. She was pale and she felt clammy. Charlie and I were both calling her name and she finally came to, asking what happened. Charlie told me that they were just standing in the kitchen talking to each other when he saw her eyes roll back and she staggered backward into the fridge, then bounced off of that, and while going down, hitting her head on the corner of the oven. He ran and caught her by the belt of her bathrobe, just before she hit the floor.

She had been complaining the day before about a headache and so I let her stay home from school. Since I'd been sick too, I thought maybe she was coming down with the flu-like symptoms I was experiencing and decided to play it safe. There's been a lot of stress in our home with school finals, activities, etc. I know Averie and Caris have both been burning the candle at both ends, but unlike her sister, Caris doesn't take as good a care of herself as she should. So, we let her slowly get herself together and we went to the Urgent Care Center of our local hospital. There, through the course of the day, they performed every imagineable diagnostic test on her; blood panels for diabetes, anemia, blood pressure, ecg, x-rays, checking for dehydration, etc. They found nothing, but put us on "concussion watch" since she hit her head, and referred us to a cardiologist. She's not permitted to drive, or be alone, or attend school, until she is cleared by this cardiologist. The only problem is, the cardiologist couldn't fit her in until this morning. So she's spent the week at home, resting.

While my daughter rested on the couch, under my watchful eye, I reflected. I found that in my worry to get all things done, I missed the very things that bring me joy. I sat and wrote Averie a note telling her how proud I am of her for all her hard work and how much I love her. I talked with Caris about how much she means to me, how I adore her, and how she needs to take better care of herself because she is so important to Daddy and me. I hugged Bry when he got home from school. I met my husband at the door with a kiss. In our forced convelescence, I finished decorating the poor Christmas tree, finished our Christmas cards, and I lovingly woke Caris from her naps every hour, on the hour, as instructed. I quietly wished to myself that I weren't so prone to complain and sighed at the reason that I was allowed this opportunity to get these things done...at my daughter's expense. I worried, and worry still. There is no definitive answer, but I've been made aware of an important lesson. One I knew, but I needed a reminder.

Today, while I hold my daughter's hand as we visit this next doctor, I will remember how precious this life is and how blessed I am. There is no thing or "to do" list that is important enough to ignore the small joys. Don't let any opportunity pass to tell someone you love that you love them.

I love you all. Thank you for your love and friendship. Now and always.