Wednesday, December 9, 2009

No Freebie Anymore...

Have to find a new way to connect. My piggyback days are over.

Monday, December 7, 2009

What music means to me...

I love music. There was a time when it was all I ever wanted. Then I heard my singing voice, and I lost some confidence points. I'm not fishing for compliments here. I know I can carry a tune, and I'm okay with that. But when I hear a truly inspiring voice, like Fatai's, I wish I had more ability to express my emotions via song.

My sister Margaret can sing like that. She puts her all in any song she sings. And her voice is really beautiful.
Jun says I can sing like that too, I'm just too shame. He thinks it is a lack of confidence and practice. My fear is that it really is a lack of talent. But I can dream that the sounds that come out of my mouth match the sounds that I hear in my brain.
Maybe a little more practice wouldn't hurt either.

I Support Poly Music Makers...

Here is my new fave gospel voice: Fatai Tovo singing her original composition. Also, her voice singing The Shepherd of My Soul at a church function, hence the shot of the ceiling.

Her gift of music is shared publicly and freely.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

From the mouths of babes...

No, I am not talking about cute guys here.

When entrusted with the raising and training of a child, one must be aware that one's actions affect said child. Whether direct or indirect, that child observes and often times imitates behaviors and attitudes modeled by the parent.
So a word of caution, be very aware that what you say and do in front of those little eyes and ears are being replayed to the general public.
At any given time, with or without prompt, your child says things that reveals what you have said in the privacy of your home. Your child repeats your opinions or statements or prejudices.
Whether of not they are the most brilliant child you have ever seen, they will do this unknowingly. Or worse, very knowingly. Can a child be sneaky and cunning? Be assured that they are very capable of using words as weapons. Especially if their parents use those weapons indiscriminately around them.

Food and the Palagi Ward

Since moving to Charlotte, I have had to adjust my mindset when it comes to refreshments at a ward event.

When I first got here in 2007, my cousin invited us to her annual ward luau. We were warned by Rachel that the palagis don't do food like we do in Hawaii. Store bought cookies and some tap water in a pitcher was what was usually on the menu.
We went to the luau, but stopped off at Panera Bread first to grab some sandwiches so our growling stomachs wouldn't give us away. Surprise, surprise. There was actually plenty of food. So much, there was food to take home. The next day, we went to the fireside/thank you dinner. I came hungry expecting the same abundance of food. Surprise, surprise. There was only enough for firsts.
My ward had yet to impress me with an abundance of food. Even the Relief Society activities here, usually an oasis of homemade goodies in Hawaii, are more often than not populated by plastic containers stuffed with store bought baked goods. Um, yuck.
So last night, I downed two sandwiches in expectation of a meager spread, and the ward surprised me. We had lots of food. A simple menu, but lots of it. The ham was tasty, the greenbean casserole creamy and good, the fruit salad delicious, the rolls tender and moist, the sweet potatoes crunchy and sweet. All in all, I had two servings and some to take home.
This ward has stepped up it's game. Right on.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Thursday is for TV.

I have always been a TV bug.

I used to wake up, or at least try to force my peepers open at 6 am every Saturday so I could maximize my TV watching time. Imagine, I would literally use my fingers to pry open my eyes while my sibs all slept. Did I even enjoy TV in that tortured state? Duh. Yes.
So no surprise that as I have grown older, I still enjoy my TV moments. But to be fair, this past few years I have dwindled my time down. Partly due to the fact that we don't have cable-and it hasn't been as bad as I would have thought. Also, in large part to my LOVE of the Internet.
Anyways, Thursdays this Fall 2009 has been dedicated to the following shows: Fringe, Survivor Samoa, Grey's, and Private Practice.
Fringe is an X-filesish show that has creepy quirky plot lines, but we watch because one the main characters-Walter Bishop - is flippin' hilarious. One of his more memorable lines: "I ate that hot pepper once. The flatulence was terrible."
Survivor Samoa has one main reason we watch: Russell H. That little pygmy makes me laugh with how much scheming and conniving he does. He could almost be a real Hamo.
Grey's and PP are my so-so shows. I mean, if I get a chance to catch them, I'm cool. If not, I'm cool.
Finally, just as an afterthought...Wednesday is also for TV. I am a GLEEK! If you don't know what that means, go ahead and Google it. I always cry when I watch Glee. Always!!
And as another afterthought, I haven't watched as much TV cause I like to get on the Internet. But guess what I do when I get on the Internet?
Watch the TV shows I missed on the network websites of HULU.
Like I said. I have always been a TV bug.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Mini-Me Mabeleen

I got a call at 8:30 am, NC time. It was from Beenie and I was immediately worried. Even with daylight savings in effect, she was calling me at 3:30 am, HI time.
I knew when I said hello that something was bothering her. She asked me if I was okay, and I say to her, I'm okay, are you okay? She had a bad dream about me and wanted to know if I was really alright. She was choked up and still in the grips of the nightmare that put the suggestion in her head.

I have had those kinds of dreams and wake up crying, or many times, need to be woken up because I am either whimpering or bawling hard out in my sleep. Maybe that's why I always give such startled reactions when someone wakes me up. Jun says that he knows I am fake sleeping when he has to call out to me more than two times. In fact, it is actually Ms. Beenie who gets a kick out of waking me up when I am sleeping and waiting for the ensuing shocked voice/face action that follows.
It reminded me of me, except I get to be the comforter now, instead of the comforted.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

A Commitment to Comment. Consistently.

The tsunami that hit my island on September 29 left me without words. Not merely speechless, but absolutely wordless. My mind could not begin to understand how so much destruction could happen so quickly. Mom was safe, and true to her nature, got busy helping out where she could. We lost our Aunty Michelle, who had been a major part of our Samoa life. We were lucky, not too many reasons to cry personally. But a sadness for the general loss was unshakable.

What followed for the next 3 weeks was my constant adding of links to my Facebook page. It included people's video and image shares from Samoa. I added over 50 links in that time. No words came from me, just the links. I wanted only to focus on what had happened in Tutuila. The images from Upolu were not as readily forthcoming. I had walked those streets, I had traveled to those some of those villages daily. My mind battled with the new landscape that was forced into being by the wild blue sea. I wanted to go home, I wanted to make it safe and restore it back to my mind's remembering. Does that sound delusional? I think I may have lost it a bit, because that was my homeland.
Many people I know were galvanized by that tragedy to send help in any way they could. I applaud their efforts and their abilities. Others were able to speak and move and do. They organized donation stations, shipping dates and concerts. T-shirt sales and graphics to use on the internet to show that Samoa was on the most important "to-do" list ever popped up overnight. I observed. That is what I did. Observe and pray. My default in detached crises is to observe. I know I can do when I need to. (I delivered a baby in my truck in 2005, so I know I can do when I need to.) But this was not in my proximity, and that helplessness was what caused me to only observe. But many many thoughts were and are swirling in my mind since September 29, and I want to get them out and about. I need to convert those thoughts into words.
That being said, I commit to comment consistently for the remainder of this year. On New Year's Day, I will revisit that commitment and see if I succeeded or not.
This is Day 1 of my Commitment to Comment Consistently.