Thanks to Twyla for this idea (and link)!
I took a few of my favorite photos from each month of 2006 (they appear chronologically) and put them together. Maybe THIS should have been our cyber-holiday-card!
Thanks to Twyla for this idea (and link)!
... but I've been on vacation and have felt significantly less cerebral for the past few weeks! Next week I'm sure I'll have more poignant observations and more interesting things to say -- especially since I'll start my new job on Tuesday.
We haven't forgotten, nor hum-bugged the season
We promise, our silence comes with good reason:
We'd had it with ice and with wind and with snow
So off to Maui this family did go!
The kids are now older and tout independence
They're now less like children and more like descendents.
Seven of us traveled: parents, sisters and bro(s)
Plus sweet Danelle, Peter's long-time S.O.(s).
The year has been busy, so the break much deserved
Many milestones and stresses had kept us unnerved.
We've all been through changes, some good and some tough
But we've learned, through it all, not to sweat the small stuff.
In the spring, Carol's job came to an end
No funding for health -- an unfortunate trend
Then six months at Microsoft, but not left-brained enough
Soon will help BillG bring schools up to snuff.
Tom's job is stable; still digitally drawing
And projects at home keep him hammer-and-sawing.
His obsession's Hawaii, its warm breezes and sand
He's scheming a way to buy us some land.
Elisabeth bid Cal adieu in the Spring
Now sells unpronounceable medical things
She's back in Seattle, in a city abode
Our little girl's now in adult career mode!
Peter's in school, and keeps REI running
His plans for Washington State are forthcoming.
He and Danelle are on year number three
There's no doubt to us that they fit to a "t."
Aleks towers over the rest of the clan
Into politics, debate, and his grand college plan.
Next summer, he'll fly to Europe alone
To explore both himself and environs unknown.
Kat is as little and Aleks is tall
This twin thing doesn't hold for these two at all!
She gives of her time in the surgery suite
And for yearbook, she's often the "man on the street."
If these once-a-year updates leave you itching for more
(Or if enduring them annually is more of a chore)
There's more almost daily, I'm such a word-hog
Yes, I refer to a my very own blog.
Time flies by quickly; who fooled with the Plan?
We swear, only yesterday all this began!
Here's wishing you health and love and good cheer
A joyous today and a Happy New Year.
HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL!
Posted by Carol at 12:55 AM
Happy holidays from our family to yours! I usually get our holiday cards out during the first week in December, but not this year! And I usually write a silly poem to accompany the collage, but I'm not sure yet if that will happen this year... I'm still awaiting inspiration!
I am enveloped in the peace and quiet of Christmas morning -- and loving it. Whereas when the kids were young, this morning was filled with excitement and activity (and I loved that too), these days Christmas morning tends to be quiet and relaxed. I anticipate that, after last night, everyone will sleep in fairly late. Except me; I can never sleep in. Sometimes it's a curse!
Tomorrow night we'll board a plane heading back to Seattle (via LA) where we apparently STILL don't have power! Our poor neighbors have been enduring both a freeze and a power outage since the day we arrived in Maui eight days ago! How strange it'll be to go from warm, sunny, glorious weather to freezing cold, dismal weather and no power! But it'll be great to see our pets... and yes, eight days of togetherness will be too much. I think I'm driving my very independent kids nuts!?
We got up at 4 AM this morning and drove from sea level to the 10,000 foot summit of the Haleakala volcano in a matter of an hour and a half. We'd heard that watching the sun rise from Haleakala can be a spiritual experience -- and if it weren't for the 200 other people awaiting said spiritual experience, it might have been. In any case, it was beautiful! And once the sun rose, we could see the baren landscape of a volcano's crater! Incredible!
Instead of heading back to the condo like sane tourists, we split in three different directions once we returned to sea level. Peter and Danelle rented scooters and explored West Maui. Elisabeth, Kat and Aleks headed for Big Beach (where we were rained out earlier in the week). Tom (who celebrates his 51st birthday today) and I went out to lunch at Bubba Gumps, walked around Lahaina (the banyan tree, which fills up one full city block, is amazing!), and thoroughly enjoyed an afternoon sail on the America's Cup II, which we wanted to do last time we were here, but it was cancelled. I grew up on sailboats in the San Francisco Bay, so this was definitely familiar territory! The best part of the excursion, though, was something I couldn't catch on "film" (no, I was able to document the captain's chiseled bod!): a whale, fully breeching out of the water in a magestic jump, very close to the sailboat!! And he happened to be right in that streak of soon-to-be-setting sunlight that lay across the water in front of our boat! Now THAT was a spiritual experience!
We then all met up in Lahaina, where I had some major holiday shopping to do, but got diverted by the second amazing sun event of the day -- sunset from Lahaina! I never got much shopping done, though, because others wanted to get back to the condo. Yup -- too much togetherness! But really, we're doing just fine... still laughing and enjoying ourselves, for the most part.
So now for the sad part -- packing for the trip home. We need to be out of the condo by 11 AM, but our flights (yes, Danelle is flying separately again, but she's on a straight shot to Seattle) don't take off till almost 12 hours later.
Thanks for "sharing" our trip with us, whoever you all are! I hope it hasn't been boring for you. I'll get back to those other boring posts soon... though first I might have some rather interesting storm and holiday posts!
With some of us leaving Black Rock Beach with sunburns yesterday, we decided that today would be a do/go-as-you-please day. Tom and Peter explored the big waves (or what should have been big waves, but turned out to be wimpy waves) on the north side of the island, Elisabeth, Kat and I spent most of the day by the pool, Danelle relaxed mostly in the shade of the condo, and Aleks kinda made the rounds. It's important to have a day like this, I think, when seven otherwise-independent people are thrown together 24 hours a day for 9 days.
Aleks might be relegated to the sofa sleeper, but he definitely has the best view! I took this picture before he woke up this morning.
OK, it's not that sudden -- more "persistent."
As we sat waiting for the botched flight to leave Seattle, I made the call and accepted the job offer! I'll post more about the job after I have a chance to absorb it all, but it's basically perfect for me, encompassing everything I want in a job! I've never hired and managed so many people before, nor have I established and run an entire office... but I'm up for it and hopefully I'll be good at it.
I'll start work on January 2nd, but I'll work at home for the first two weeks while the office space (apparently my office has views of the Space Needle, EMP and the Puget Sound!) is being established.
As much as I love my career, I must admit that Tom and I have pondered ways to stay in Hawaii. He keeps mentioning "Carolita's Fish Tacos." Hmmmm... sounds better and better with each mai-tai on the lanai, snorkeling adventure, and late-night warm ocean beach walk!
It'll be hard to go back -- EVEN to something as exciting as this new position.
The day began with a sunrise that looked very much like a sunset! Turns out it was sugar cane fields burning -- which is apparently a regular occurance on Maui!
We then took off for a day at Ka'anapali Beach where we did some boogie boarding and snorkeling. More than once, we reminded each other that it's DECEMBER... and that our neighborhood is still without power, five days after the worst windstorm in recent Pacific Northwest history! It's 45 degrees in our house... poor animals! And the forecast is that it might even be a few more days before our neighborhood -- which is both fairly rural and in one of the hardest-hit areas -- has electricity.
I asked Tom to "put his arm around his daughter." What a goof-ball!
In the evening, it was off to the Drums of the Pacific Luau at the Hyatt Regency -- where the drinks just kept flowing! It was entertaining (especially the fire dancer!), but it didn't compare to the Old Lahaina Luau, which Tom and I saw in 2002. That was much less commercial and seemed to be more authentic.
Still, some of those bodies... niiiice!
When they offered hula lessons on stage, Danelle, Elisabeth and Kat decided to give it a try (fourth, third and second from right). Danelle, being part Hawaiian, definitely looked like a natural. What fun!
Tomorrow we'll head for the North Side beaches again and then into Kahalui. Hopefully the power will be on again in Seattle so we can stop feeling so dang guilty about this glorious (and I mean GLORIOUS!) weather! Where else does outdoors just sort of "flow" into indoors? Some buildings have only a roof... no doors or windows. With the temperature around 72 - 79 degrees year-round, why bother?!
Too tired to write much of a narrative, but suffice it to say that these 37 coastal miles define "paradise"! I should also mention that a mini-van is too small for seven of us -- and that we've had entirely too much togetherness... so tomorrow we'll all just spread out for a beach day, then come together again for a LUAU!
A bamboo forest (with a family we met there). Ke'anae Point.