Sunday, June 26, 2016

June 2, 2016

I wrote this lil-diddy on June 2, 2016 and is has been aging in my wine barrel of words ever since. 
Please, Let me pour you a glass...
It's really June 2nd, okay?
I am sitting on my couch looking out my front living room window at our peach, lemon and lime trees and then there's my lounging wiener dog, Sara. The pooch is staring back at me on her own little couch next to the window. She can lay in that spot for hours. That would bore me to death; so thankful God created me in  human form and not a wiener dog. Besides that point, I am reflecting how one year ago we were in the exciting storm of graduating two kids; Daniel from 8th grade and Lucas from high school.
Blink, Blink. Yabble-Dabble...and Presto! 
 2015, our "two-grad" year
 A year later, Daniel is wrapping up his freshman year of high school and Lucas completed his first year of junior college. He is now counting the days until two summer school classes start.
Side Note: I heard him telling a friend that in summer school he is taking Speech Communication and Astrology.
  Really, wizard? Astrology?
It's Astronomy.
More and more I am secure with his decision to attend Moorpark Junior college. Tomorrow we are touring Cal Poly Pomona as they are one of the few schools with a Music Industry major and his heart is still perched on an Audio Engineering degree. He just has to survive another year at home. This is cool with me, but he is swamped in deep dislike (I avoided the word hate -- too strong)  over living at home still. Seeing so many of his friends be whisked out of state or at least out of town has left him down. But I am confident that there is a plan in the works for him.....think Jeramiah 29:11
"Know the plans I have for you says the lord.
Plans to prosper you, not to harm you, plans with hope and a future."
I trust that promise is for Lucas; you and me too!
And this verse brings me to yet another side note:
I only memorized that particular bible verse and can NEVER forget it because our EXTREMELY-straight-as-an-arrow-clean-cut-Christian babysitter,  who was homeschooled her entire life and purer than the light of day had that very verse tattooed on her ankle when she was a teenager.  I almost spit out my mouth full of (Jesus) wine when she showed me. She explained that her mother was so upset, she refused to talk to her and I was right there with a mother's understanding. A tattoo?
This sweet young thang was THE LAST kid in town to permanently ink her bod!
I still don't dig tats so much, even if my name is involved
However, ten years later I have accepted that if she will "tat-up" ANYONE will. It's a cultural thing whether I have a ticket on the ink train or not (Dam, I sound like a crusty-curmudgeon). BTW, many people I know and love dearly have tattoos, and that is fine for them. I'm not judging here, just saying it's VERY permanent and I am too wishy-washy.
 My philosophy remains that the new tattoo is no tattoo.
Where was I?
Oh, by my sweet doggie staring back with her lazy-dog glaze and recalling our two graduations last June 2015. While my sons next/future graduations are simmering on the back burner for three more years, tonight we celebrate our dear friend "Baby Lily" graduating from high school, with her flight path set for Pepperdine University in the fall. 
Daniel and Graduating Lily on the Thomas the Tank Engine 12 years ago!

"Astrologer" Lucas and Pepperdine-bound Lily 9 years ago
 Perhaps, I should be prepping hors'dervs for her party and showering this bod-o-mine, instead of blabbering via keyboard. But wait, there is so much Unicycle Rose Life to share and I know that someone, maybe someone, will care. Hi Mom J
I hope to keep pecking my future thoughts and tell of my adventures. Like my banjo tales have to be told ... I have been in lessons for the last 8 months, plus I am excited for summer.
The Fourth of July is almost here!
Not only are all my flowers blooming, American flag swaying in the wind, but I just rented Daniel a surfboard for our upcoming week in Hawaii.
The actual board that we rented in Oahu and there was no surf on our trip. Go fig!
Where's Waldo/Lucas in this photo? Look closely.
But this is all for now, folks.
Stop and take time to smell the summer flowers because life is short (and so am I). More on that later, but for now remember to be kind because everyone is going through something… And some of those people have tattoos and that is totally okay.
 God loves everyone.
Hugs from UR

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Aloha, Part Dos

If you noticed, I wrote "DOS" in the title instead of TWO.  
 Do you know that I STILL "think" in Spanish words? Not all the time.  Ever since high school, the basic words/verbs of Spanish live in my brain. It isn't helping that Daniel completed Spanish "Uno" last semester and is all begging me to practice his conversational Spanish. There's been mucho laughter about our bilingual (can I call it that?) casa de Espanol malo... translation:
House of bad Spanish.
But all of that Spanish-speak is besides the point of this post.
This is  about Oahu Adventures, as the title is Aloha, Part Dos. 
Duh, George.
Feels like we are going in circles....

Moving on....
 Parasailing was cancelled on Wednesday afternoon due to wind; unruley weather. There was slim pickins to go again and we rescheduled for Friday at 8AM. That was early for us, but the show must go on. We met the cousins bright and early at the Honolulu dock.  
  It was more cloudy than sunny, and quite damp. Ralph opted out of this adventure and decided to be an "observer." So, Lucas, who is scared of heights, and Daniel, who is an adrenalin junkie, and I parasailed together. Floating 500 feet above the  water, Lucas was freaking out while Daniel removed the  recording GoPro from his mouth complaining "This is all it is?"
 As for my take?
 Remember when you were a child and would look up at the fluffy-big-white clouds and wonder, "What would it be like to sit on a cloud?" Parasailing was JUST. LIKE. THAT. Cloud sitting. Yes, like that. Very floaty with some sudden dips and there is a point where they float you down like a falling leaf and soak you in the warm ocean. We didn't want this to happen, but we forgot to tell them "No Gracias" on the dipping option.
   It was an overall good experience, checked it off my bucket list
and life back on land has been marching forward ever since.
Another adventure was the four of us hiking up the top of Diamond Head Crater. Excellent-postcard-worthy views in all directions. Even a light house down below on Diamond Head Beach that Daniel would surf at later that week.
As for my take of the hike?
 It was short --1.6 miles-- yet steep, including intense climbing-up-butt-burning-stairs for almost a mile. It was gorgeous at the peak. My personal highlight was that I "Face Timed" my Dad from the tippy-top and shared the sights with him.
 Next on the "Teens in Oahu" menu? 
Snorkeling in Huanama Bay, which is tough to get into as they only allow 300 cars and then its "closed" --- it was lovely, except, once again, windy.

Since I rode a moped there on my high school senior trip in 1986, it has transformed into a snorkel-type-water park where you have to pay 8$ per person to snorkel and must watch a ten minute video on on the fish and wild-life preservation before they will let you down to the bay. Basically, the info-video-mesage was do NOT touch the fish or coral reefs as they are ALIVE and you will injure them.
Roger that, Houston.
Then off we walked, not taking tram down (yes, they have cheap tram rides now like Disneyland) to the bay and the four of us soaked in the colorful schools of  fish, many foreign languages all around, and an African American guy in a gold-shimmery-puffy-speedo. His suit reminded me of the time I saw Cool and the Gang decades ago. It was all good.

Most days we returned to our Waimanalo beach house full of active-sparky-sometimes-cranky-little-ones, more tradewinds and homemade dinners.
 So amigos, that is a wrap on Aloha adventures.

 "Aloha Part Tres" post is coming soon!
Adios and enjoy your weekend :)

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Aloha, Part One

ALAS, Unicycle Rose feels compelled to check in -- minus the unicycle. Ye old unicycle still sits in my living room, just a room away from my banjo. Both neglected these days, but items that hold an everlasting place in my heart's desire to keep growing up in fun ways!

Daniel and Lui relaxing before Daniel attacks the shore with his skim board

Just back from a week in Oahu, Hawaii, visiting family and making memories with my sisters, my Bro-in-laws, niece and nephew.

Lucas at Waikiki Beach

Unicycle and banjo lessons aside, today, my heart is full of good memories, gratefulness for time spent with loved ones and (of course) good health. THAT'S what it's all about people!
View from our dining room.
The beautiful beachfront landscape is fake looking.
TOO perfect? Never!
Admittedly, I have written a few posts in the near past. The pressure to perfect each one  is so great and the laziness that swells within has forced me to hold  back like a pit-bull owner facing a scared toddler. I am sort of afraid of make the wrong writing move, so doing nothing is safe... nobody gets hurt, bitten or requires a tetanus shot.
  Does that make sense?

Our attempt at a family photo in some heavy south shore winds
So, about that week on Oahu, Hawaii...
The first day there, Daniel was stung by a Man O War. We rushed him to Urgent Care for some treatment. The pain was intense and he was one-tough-cookie. Thankfully, we got him some good stuff to numb the pain, chilled for the rest of the day, then moved forward....
I do miss blogging though. And waking up to this view.

(If this is just "unicycle-rose-mumble-jumble" then bear with me.
We will let these photos from last week do the talking.)

Diapers and crying - OH, Baby girl!
Sharing a house with a 15-month-old and five-year old rocked the place. I forgot how "constant" little people are. Darling and charming as could be, I would not have wanted any other living arrangements.
 Many days we did our own family outings that only teens can do....hiking up Diamond Head, snorkeling in Hunama Bay and parasailing topped that list! Hopefully, I can share those pics soon.
 Paradise with my peeps :)

Lucas attempting to climb a coconut tree.
 The mission was not successful, and
he earned a big-fat "E" for EFFORT!

Our Jeep wheels for the week.
 Anything but luxurious, but the perfect car for DUDES!
Why yes, my husband WAS in charge of the car rental!
 Hawaiian cousins visited to bury each other in the sand, work 
on our "vacation puzzle" and other shenanigans

 WE met with even more Hawaiian cousins at the bowling alley and we (surprised) celebrated Miss Piggy's upcoming 50th birthday next month. 

A huge cake that we feasted on all week
 The bowling pool winners were Cousin Randy and Teckie

After 25 years in Hawaii, my cousin "G" is moving to Arizona next month!
I am really excited and happy for her family, but will miss the "Aloha Connection."

My boys with their Hawaiian teenage girl cousins.
 They don't even look related, right?
 Teckie and Me - hopefully there are many more Hawaii trips in our future.
 He is not a big fan - when I suggested Oahu...
He said, "We have already been to Hawaii!"
Me? I could spend every vacation on one of those islands, but he is not a "sun person", sooo
we must compromise. Isn't that just like a marriage? One huge compromise :)
Great location to spend Father's Day, fo shizzle!
Finally, a Family photo that could very well land on a Christmas card in December ... God Willing.
I am 100% positive that life circumstances can change in a minute -- so we treasure the pineapple-plumeria-turquoise water-tropical-heated-rain and dear family memories that glow in our hearts at present.

 And for now, life is good :)

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Timing is Everything, Woof!

This post was written a few days after we put Goldie to sleep ... in AUGUST! However, I am putting it on the cyber books to make it official Family History.
August 2015:
 I arrived home from work and there was an envelope tucked into our door. My first thought was that someone knew we were sad and left us a card. But, no. It was a leter from Animal Service with a handwritten note on the front. ""This is a 'heads up' letter from an official barking complaint made to our department. Any questions, contack me ....blah, blah, blah." Feeling drained from our sick dog, I couldn't help but laugh out loud at the irony of it all. To receive a Nuisance Animal Barking complaint the day we put Goldie to sleep? Ha! Bad life-timing.
But wait, it gets better. 
Loving our one-one-and-only
Two days after we put Goldie to sleep, we received a card from the "new vet" that was helping us with her sudden paralysis (our usual vet was booked). My first thought was they sent us a condolence card. How sweet ... Perhaps it was part of their "service" like the clay paw print they made of Goldie right after she passed.
Inside the card was handwritten "We'd like to welcome you and Goldie to the clinic! Goldie is so cute and sweet!"  It went on to say how they look forwad to helping us and our pet share a healthy and happly life together.
C'mon, for Pete's Sake -  Pay attention Vet people!!
Sara is now our "beach weemie" and this was a very windy day.
 She looks like the Flying Nun! Remember that show with Sally Fields?
 This  last week without Goldie around we have been extra loving to her sister Sara. As Goldie was the social, barky, loving one, Sara was lost in the background of hunting through the yard and ignoring us like a housecat. Now she is the only one left and it is like getting to know a whole new dog. Like I would have with Goldie, I took Sara out with us when I could. Those two couldn't have been more differnt; just like human sisters! She seemed to like the trip to the beach and is enjoying the extra treats, but is still moping and not eating like usual.  The depressed-dog "solution" better not be another dog, because that's "no bueno". I read it can take dogs weeks to get through the depression and sadness of losing a litter mate. We will wait and see ...

Weiner Sister Update:
November - Three months with only Sara
Sara is in the shape of her life! She lost a couple pounds in her grieving, and she had it to lose.  We had named her "Fatty" when her sister was alive. Mean, right? She is a dog, and didn't know she was overweight. For the record, I would never call my kid or friend that. However, now Stealth Sara is in the pit of health. She comes to work with me a couple days a week and I walk her daily.  She is my new BFF! These have been positive changes, and, it appears, we'll survive as a one-dog-family.
So, there ya go!
 We have an old-new dog, Sara, who is turning NINE (that's 63 in dog years) on November 25 ... Please pass the pupcakes :)

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Goodbye Goldie

Sadly, we had to put Goldie to sleep.
 It was an emotionally draining week.
 We are empty. 
Teckie and I cancelled our weekend in Santa Barbara (to celebrate his birthday) and stay home. Our hearts are tenderly fragile right now. Sara, Goldie's sister, is mopey and not herself. Those two have been together, playing and sleeping on each other everyday for nearly nine years. 
Sisters Forever
Those last days with Goldie, knowing she had to leave us - were tough,  but a blessing just the same. We didn't waste a minute of loving her. During the day we took her outside and sat together under a shady tree; letting her soak up the yard she loved to play in. She would try to run but her paralyzed behind wouldn't budge. Poor thing. We let her have all the treats she wanted and even some Chinese Orange Chicken that she devoured. Goldie's last night she slept in between Daniel and I in our guest bedroom. Lucas and Sara were next to us on the floor. 
We brought Sara with us to the vet when we let Goldie go. Teckie held her. She knew what was going on. It was a heart wrenching day; but a relief knowing she is out of pain and running around with healed legs in doggie heaven.

Goldie would have been nine on November 25, 2015
We brought Goldie home in a box that Lucas painted brown with a big red heart on the top. She was wrapped in blankets with her sweet-little-face showing; white-aged muzzle and all. Daniel and Teckie dug a nice deep hole and we buried her in the backyard. Sara sat from a distance and watched. When the final shovel and rake were finished; Sara slowly walked up to her sister's grave and sat right on top of it. 
Grieving together is easier than doing it alone. 
This is a mournful family time and it feels like there are no tears left. Now, only  memories of the most love-able, lick-y and dearest dachshund will live on. She will be forever missed by this family she blessed every day with kisses and that joy-filled-wagging-back half.

Rest In Peace Sweet Goldie