Here is a video of Sam and Ben boogie boarding. They have gotten so good at it. Ben especially is just nuts. People literally stop to watch him. He says “Oh! That one’s too small.” or “OH YAH! That’s a GOOD one!” then he spins around to ride it. His head sometimes disappears under the foam then he reappears still holding his board. It will be really hard to leave here, but thankfully the boys have gotten this place firmly under their skin. I am already grabbing hard onto memories that I just don’t want to ever fade.
So Sam is still sick with a cough, ear fullness, etc. Took him to doc finally today – he’s been sick since Jan 27 (his birthday – on the Big Island). Hard to tell if it’s one virus waxing and waning, or trading viruses around school. Lots of kids have had to go to the hospital with pneumonia so I decided to go have a look before the weekend. I do not particularly enjoy hanging out in urgent care or the ER. They did a chest xray – very interesting for all of us. Sam did GREAT holding still, holding his arms up, holding his breath, etc. (Picture Ben and I in a corner snuggled under a heavy lead apron during all of this.) Then to the tech’s desk (Kimberly at Kbay ROCKS!) to show us the images. We found his heart, his ribs (counting 10 above diaphragm is good – means they got a good view), esophagus, shoulder bones. He was really interested in his spine since he fell at a playground a few months ago and knocked his wind out. I guess he still had concerns about his spine. He was happy to see it all there, stacked nicely. Then we spotted a big black oval in his stomach – an air bubble! You know what that was? A burp…or hiccups! He had the hiccups all day. That’s my guess. Then to the pharmacy to wait and wait and wait for some meds (just OTC stuff, nothing “GOOD”). I declined the bronchodilator – not sure why that is all the rage now. He is having no trouble saturating his blood with O2 and the cough is productive. I can do chest PT if needed. No dilator, thanks – I guess I’m old school. So we did a mini hike in the little garden near pharmacy, found some seedlings sprouting into trees, a snail shell, and some coral. Managed to keep ourselves busy for at least half an hour. On our way home I stopped to get the boys some snacks. Sam opted for Oreos – he’s sick, so ok. We did compare labels later with Ben’s animal crackers to see which was the best bet – fat, sugar, calories. So I mentioned to Sam that his Oreos had 270 calories and 11 g of fat. He replied, “So…I will burn that off in four and a half hours.” I said “Huh?” He repeated it. Then I realized what he’d done! He’d remembered approx 60 cal/hr (that’s what an adult burns just sitting around running your body – basic metabolic processes – if I remember correctly). So that is exactly right – if resting he’d burn that in about 4 1/2 hours. Amazing. I was literally stunned. Thumped the steering wheel and hooted for him! That brain sure works well even when full of crud. After all that I managed to really bang up my leg (forgot to get me a snack) trying to rescue a frisbee from the roof. We went to the beach park with footballs and bouncy ball and played around, then Bob’s for dinner and shave ice for sick boys. They had a very good time. Finally, we wrapped up the evening with a meeting with Octopus (my little stuffed friend Dave bought me last weekend at Sea Life Park). I love the octopus – so smart and quiet. A real observer. They both love for me to make Octopus talk – the boys enjoy reporting in to Octopus on their day, doing a recap. Octopus asks if they’ve made their mom nuts or were they pretty good. That sort of thing. He also sniffs their feet to see if they’ve had a good day. If totally disgusting, brown and stinky he does foot-fives (not high-fives) with the boys. Then they romp and off to bath. I like Octopus. Very sage, that guy.
Dave got word today that it looks pretty solid we’ll be moving in June or July. We think. No orders yet but we will continue making prep so we are ready to fly into action. Come visit soon!
Ben thought it was a big truck, actually. But Sam really enjoyed building a real fort. Lots and lots of driftwood on the beaches this year. I think more than I recall in other years? Who knows. But it is lots of fun to see what kids – young and old alike! – build out of them all along the Kailua Bay beaches. This one is on the Marine Corps Base where we went for haircuts first (and WAHWIPOPS! says Ben). We also scored new amphibious hikers for Ben (who is a size 11 now) and new slippers for Sam (who is size 2 or 9 – not sure how the sizing works, it’s very confusing but suffice to say Sam’s feet are almost as big as mine). I got new running shoes on sale (size 9 1/2 if anyone cares – my feet are a size and a half bigger after carrying two huge boys around!). Maybe for posterity it’s worth noting that at age 6, Sam is 51 inches tall and 63 pounds. Ben (almost 3) is 40 inches and 37 pounds. The boys have been trading colds for three weeks now, but I think they are both finally on the mend. I have been spared, mercifully, for the most part. Mom got it good when Ben sneezed right into her eyes. Poor mom. But she is on antibiotics now and seems to be on the mend. Quote of the day, Sam, carrying a rock to show me which he’d dived down into the water to retrieve: “Mom, see this red? This has (pause to think a second) HEMATITE in it!” And the other day while chatting with my friend Ang about how everyone in the family was trying to shed a few pounds which had creeped on over the holidays, I noted that we’d all GAINED weight after starting a diet. Nice. Sam overheard me say “What are we drinking, heavy water or something?” and said “Mom, heavy water is D-two-oh.” Right he was. D2O. Funny that I have to Google stuff he says pretty regularly now. Rest assured, though, he is being fully schooled in pop culture by…drum roll…the school. They watch 1/2 hour of TV a day. Shows we’d never seen before because we don’t watch PBS. Caillou who? Anyone have good suggestions for first chapter books for a guy who is reading second grade level? He hasn’t seen Harry Potter yet, so I don’t know if that’s a good chapter book to start? Aloha all and happy President’s Day. Did you memorize the Gettysburg address? I still remember the feeling of accomplishment getting through that – sixth grade I believe.
OH! Finally activated the ability for you to subscribe to posts via email at top right. Should make keeping up easier on you – no need to remember to check back. Thanks so much for staying in touch with us! Looking forward to being driving distance from EVERYONE! Watch out! No one is safe!
Explaining to the kids what has happened to Caff has been a bit difficult. You want to explain as truthfully as possible within the limits of a child’s ability to understand. But in so doing you don’t want to inadvertently create fantasies by emphatically reassuring the child that the doggie is in heaven. While I think there may be a special place for pets, I am not as certain about that as I am about my faith with respect to humans. So I am treading carefully with Sam. He’s a bright guy with a long memory. Yesterday at the playground he asked how exactly Caff “got lifted up” to doggie heaven. I said well, it isn’t exactly a physical thing. I paused for a moment, and so did he. Then I said it’s more like what he saw with his dry ice on the volcano cake – sublimation. The dry ice went from solid to gas immediately, and drifted away in the breeze. So I said that when a loved one passes away, they are transported to a better place something like that. The word sublimation means a phase transformation, with respect to matter (chemistry) or even emotions (psychology). He immediately understood, and I left it at that.
Going through all the routines without Caffrey here is so hard. I don’t even want to go over by the back door that she always used. Dave has been opening it in the morning and closing it at night (the hardest time for me because that’s when I would spend extra time settling her in for the night). Today I came in from our run the back way, picked up the last of her poops, and finally used “her” door without tears. Would it be horribly weird to look for another dog exactly like her, if I could find one, and name her Caffrey? I think that’s what I want to do, but will let time tell. Confronting old age with my doggie girl has brought me face to face with my own aging, which has not been too kind this last week (back pain!). I am looking for the message of good and hope here, and I think it’s a solid reminder not to let a day pass with regret. Spend the extra moments, and try not to rush too much. Last night as I reflected I was again thankful that I have had every day with my kids before kindergarten started. Time passes so quickly and I’m thankful I won’t be able to look back and wonder how things would have been had I been given more time with them. You just can’t get time back. But at least I have pictures of Caff to remind me of those good times! 🙂
Dave said it best in a note to his family, and I’m still grasping… UPDATE: a tribute photo album is now linked to the pictures below. Thanks to mom who spent hours combing through photos last night. She managed to send me most of them, and some I’d long forgotten about.
Just a note to let you all know that Caffrey left us today at the ripe old age of 13 1/2 (9/7/97-2/12/11). She was a good dog. 🙂
She was there for so many changes in our lives, through Merck training in Philadelphia (I had her staying in my room in the Doubletree, with the manager’s permission, for six weeks!). She went trail running on her fifth birthday, followed by an ice cream cone. I still have that picture on my dresser. I know she had a great day that day. She flew out to meet us in CA, traveled with us to WA when I was 37 weeks pregnant with Sam, flew to Hawaii with us and wreaked havoc on walks with the boys to the marsh. I wish I could have given her many more great days, but aging is not an easy process for anyone. She did it as gracefully as a doggie could. She will be remembered always. Dave thank you for your kind words and strength. Love you!
Marilou – congratulations on your upcoming party! We are thrilled for you and the answers to so many prayers. Enjoy your time together celebrating with family and friends! Here are a few pictures from last week…I was a bit behind indeed. (Busy with some new work and also dealing with about 10 days of back pain triggered by a wrong move hoisting Big Ben into the truck last week! Every time I was nearly on the mend I did something (like hike with a pack) to set me back again, but I’m back to 95% now and almost in the clear.) There are more pictures in the album as well. Aloha!