November 16, 2018 – Here we go again!

Late last year, California experienced terrible record setting wildfires (‘Tubbs Fire’) . The poor air quality we have been experiencing for over a week brings back the not too distant memories of the firestorm that we endured last year.

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San Francisco skyline… (photo credit: Eric Risberg/AP)

This year the situation has repeated itself. The ‘Camp Fire’ in Northern California broke last year’s all-time record for structures burned, it also broke the record for the deadliest wildfire in state history. The fire, in Butte County has burned 135,000 acres and is only 35% contained. The burned area is nearly the size of Colorado Springs. The town of Paradise, a small town in the Sierra Nevada foothills was home to 27,000 residents it has been reduced to just ash and rubble.

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‘Camp Fire’ Paradise – Butte County. (photo credit: Getty Images)

To the south of us in Ventura County – the ‘Woolsey Fire’ has burned approximately 100,000 acres and is only 47% contained. The burned area is approximately the size of Denver.

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Woolsey Fire, Malibu – Ventura County (photo credit: Grant and Cassie Denham)

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‘Woolsey Fire’, Malibu – Ventura County (photo credit: Eric Thayer/Reuters)

 On the home front – the boys are your average, happy, inquisitive, hungry, moody, CRAZY 3 year olds!!! They are actually pretty well behaved (for me anyway 🙂 ). They love to get outside and run their little legs. Unfortunately N95 particle masks have returned as a result of the awful air quality and lingering smoke. We have had to find other venues to help them expel some of their pent up energy.

The boys started gymnastics 2 weeks ago.

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First gymnastics class…

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Superheroes!

Yesterday we went to a huge indoor place called ‘Epicenter‘. It offered a nice respite from the smoky air! The boys had a great time playing with the other kids and climbing in the play structure.

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We started attending New Life Church on Sundays 🙂 . The boys love going to ‘Sunday school’ – so much so, they usually don’t want to leave. The church is non-denominational and I think it has the right blend of spirituality and community values! I have enjoyed the experience thus far.

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First day of Sunday School

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All dressed and ready to go!

For Halloween the boys dressed up as characters from the TV show PJ Masks!

Some random pictures from the last month’s adventures.

Mahalo ke Akua – God bless all of the families that have been affected by the fires….

Rachel – I LOVE YOU!!!

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October 16th, 2018 – Threenagers!!!

Aloha!!!

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Last month we traveled to Oahu and celebrated the boy’s 3rd birthday. We had a couple of surprises in store for them. First off their older brother Avery was able to get time off from work and he spent 7 days there with us. We also tricked the boys into thinking we had to go to the airport to pick up a package – the package ended up being Grandma Anne! 🙂

The first two days of vacation were spent watching the news and the sky. There was a Tropical storm threat and it was quickly approaching us – with Flash flood warnings, high wind advisories and impassable roadways. There were some decent rainfall totals, but no torrential flooding like they had predicted.

We celebrated the boy’s 3rd birthday at Seal Life Park Oahu – with Uncle Alvin, Auntie Kehau, Cousin Nani, Cousin Loveal, Cousin Kamea, Brother Avery and Grandma Anne.

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Happy birthday to us!!!

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Birthday boys – Keoni, Makani & Kaleo

A special thanks to Auntie Lori & her son Nick for scoring us sideline passes to the University of Hawaii vs. Duquesne football game. It was the first football game for the boys and they had an amazing time!

We spent a fair amount of time – sightseeing, going to the beach and eating!

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All Pau!!!

All in all, the boys are GREAT travelers. There were no sicknesses on this trip – so that was good! We also left the strollers at home this time – that made packing and getting through the airport a lot easier. There were quite a few scrapes and bruises from being clumsy, but I think the boys enjoyed the freedom of walking around on their own!

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Our AirBnB neighbors – loved the boys! A gift from them…

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North Shore, Oahu

Aloha Kakou Hawai’i – until next time!!!

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ALOHA!

Mahalo ke Akua

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Dole Pineapple Plantation

September 16, 2018 – A Note to My Sons IV, Happy 3rd Birthday!!!

To my sons – Kaleo Samuel, Makani James & Keoni Schooler:

Happy 3rd Birthday!!!

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I can not believe that another year has come and gone. We have been on so many EPIC adventures in the past 365 days! Kaleo, Makani and Keoni I hope that you will be able to look back fondly and remember all of the fun times that we spent together as a family. I know that I enjoyed being a part of all of these memories with you! 🙂

Kaleo Samuel

My first born – you will always be the oldest and most opinionated of our boys. You are a bit of a fashionista, yet still manage to be 100% monkey! You are so brave and intuitive. You can be so sweet and loving one minute and well, the polar opposite the next! These traits will work in your favor when you are older and have the ability to harness their power. You continue to create new dance moves on a daily basis and now you are mixing in a couple of yoga positions too! I love that you can still nap in your car seat, whether it is a short trip around the block or a 2 hour drive. I can’t wait to see what your future brings – you continue to be a beacon of light to those around you and your light shines bright for all to see!

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Makani James

My little Makani Boy! You are not little anymore, but you are so sweet! Especially to daddy. I love that you will share whatever you have with me, whether it’s ice cream or candy – it doesn’t matter to you! You are and will always be Daddy’s boy!!! I look forward to all of the different games that we play and our early morning chats. You are so cautious and very observant of the world around you. You lead by example and rarely get into trouble. I am sure this will be beneficial to you later in life. I see you striving to make the world a better place each and every day. I love this picture of you – ‘DREAM BIG – Makani Boy’!!!

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Keoni Schooler

Big Boy! Our little, Big Man. You are such a sweetheart, but you still have a little bit of a mean streak! I don’t think you realize how strong you are. You love your family and it shows. You are a mama’s boy and that’s ok! Mommy loves you too! I love how you run with careless abandon on our morning walks. My heart over flows with joy when I hear you laughing and having fun. I think your strength and physical presence will come in handy when you are older and know how to control it. I see you as our ‘protector’ and the next in line should anything happen to me. I love my little Big Boy!!!

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I hope that someday each of you will be able to read this blog and remember some of the happy memories we had when you were growing up. I love you boys with all of my heart and I will continue to provide the best possible foundation for you to grow your future upon.

I am beyond blessed and honored to be your Dad.

Happy 3rd Birthday!!!

-With all of my love,

Dad

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Mahalo ke Akua/God Bless!

August 16th, 2018 – Dog Days of Summer

Hey everybody,

Just a quick update…

The boys are quickly approaching their 3rd birthday. Wow does time fly! Developmentally they are all doing well. Most, if not all of their baby fat is gone – replaced by a long lean muscular build. I miss those chubby little dudes!

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Buried in the sand at Dillon Beach!

To help them burn off some of their youthful energy – I have been getting them up at 5:30 AM and taking them on a 2 mile walk before I leave for work. They already have their little routines set and they are pretty cute to be around (most of the time!). First we walk through an elementary school and run a couple of laps around the painted circles. Then we go to the tether ball poles and do some crazy 8’s. No trip to the school would be complete without running up and down the ADA ramps to the classrooms. Then it’s a short walk to the pathway that runs by a creek. We race to the first bench and then again to the next one where we stop for a quick snack. Keoni usually wins the morning races – but Makani beat him once! 🙂 When we get to the Parkway, we all sit at the bus-stop and wave at cars for a few minutes before heading back to the house. Monday is Garbage Truck Day, Tuesday is Street Sweeper Day, Wednesday is Hot chocolate/blueberry muffins at Starbucks and Thursday/Friday are just ‘normal’ walks.

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Ready to go!

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Makani & Keoni waiting for snacks….

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Waiting for the next victim to wave at!

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Papa John and Henry get to participate.

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Starbucks! Muffins & Hot Chocolate…

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Kaleo, Makani & Keoni

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Keoni, Makani & Kaleo – barely fitting in the backyard pool…

Until next time – ‘We’re turning 3 years old!’

Mahalo ke Akua, God Bless…

 

July 16th, 2018 – County Fairs & Farmer’s Markets

I hope everybody is enjoying Summer – we definitely are! 🙂

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Brothers for life…

This past month we have been venturing out to some local Farmer’s Markets to enjoy some live music and pick up some fresh local produce. Farm fresh fruits and vegetables can be had at a reasonable price and are ‘Oh So Good’. The boys love to eat plums and nectarines while dancing to the live music!!!

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Makani, Kaleo & Keoni headed to the pool…

We have had two local fairs come to our area and the boys are all just tall enough to ride on the rides! Poor Kaleo measures just slightly above the 36 inch height requirement and was forced to prove it before every ride. As you can see from the pictures below – a GREAT time was had by all at the fair!!!

Both June & July were busy, busy, busy months for us! Rachel & I celebrated our 3rd anniversary – while Grandma Anne & Grandpa John celebrated their Golden 50th anniversary! Rachel & I did the math – I will turn 99 on our 50th anniversary! Congratulations to Nani & Chris on your engagement – we are so excited for you!!! I also want to say happy 1st birthday to Will and Andrew – my ‘grand’ nephews and Nani my niece!

We took the boys to their first movie in the theater – Incredibles 2, they did really good and loved it!!!

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Ready to GO!!!

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Incredibles 2

Here are some random photos from the last month, I hope you enjoy!

 

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Photo credit: David Jones

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Air Kaleo…

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Kaleo enjoys some snacks on the 4th of July

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Makani and his goldfish on the 4th of July

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Keoni on the 4th of July

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Happy 4th of July!!!

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Makani Boy Loves Rufus!!!

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Caption this!!! 🙂

Mahalo ke Akua – God Bless!

June 16, 2018 – Happy Father’s Day!

Happy Father’s Day to all of the dads out there!!!

Father’s Day is a celebration honoring fathers and celebrating fatherhood, paternal bonds and the role of fathers in our society. Remember that when you buy that Father’s Day card or cordless drill set! The celebration, brought to Latin America by the Spanish/Portuguese is celebrated on March 19th. In the United States – Father’s Day is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday of June.

June is a busy month – my Birthday, Father’s Day & then our Anniversary!!!

We started things off with a bang and headed up to Reno (minus the boys) for a quick weekend get away. We were invited to a “Choose your Cruise” dinner/giveaway. I have only been on 1 cruise – a 15 day sailing out of San Francisco to Hawaii/Ensenada. It was fun, but I learned that the longer the itinerary the older the passengers! Dinner was great and we received a Cruise voucher good for 2 guests with a choice of 10 different vacation departure cities/destinations.

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Star Princess

A huge thank you to our family and extended family for watching the boys for us so we could get away! Hopefully we can pull together enough volunteers so we can go on an extended Caribbean or Alaskan Cruise for a belated honeymoon!

The boys appear to be going through another growth spurt. Sadly most of their baby fat is gone 😥

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Papa John & GiGi Monica – story time with the boys!

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Bounce House

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Cupcakes

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Pool time

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Hamming it up!

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Blast from the past (2 years ago!)

On a final note:

Congratulations to the 2018 (Back to Back) World Champion Golden State Warriors!!!

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Mahalo ke Akua!!! God Bless!!!

May 16, 2018 – Happy Mother’s Day!!!

Happy Mother’s day to all of the moms, grandmas & expecting moms!!!

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For Mother’s day this year – the boy’s surprised mom with some personal art, a card and some flowers.

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We spent the day at a new park and the Second Sunday Community day in the next town over. The boys loved the bounce house, Zydeco music and pulled pork Nachos. While Kaleo mastered the twisty ladder and climbing wall at the new park.

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Since converting from cribs to toddler beds last month – Nap-time has been a struggle!!! They are slowly getting better. At least they have been good about sleeping through the night!

Where does the time go??? I know I write about this every month it seems like – but seriously? I wish I could slow time down just long enough to savor these moments before they become memories. I put together a couple of time lapse videos of the boys (see below). I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

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On a side note – I celebrated 7 years of sobriety this month – what a blessing 🙂

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Mahalo ke Akua – Thank you God!!!