Life Improvements

First off, I think I am going to try to start posting every Sunday. That seems to be my most regular free day. So stay tuned for regular updates!!!! Ideally it will be mostly fun, exciting tales of every day life, but life isn’t always sunshine and roses. I’ve gotta take the good with the bad, so I’ll share what I can with you!

I have had a lot of changes lately, so far all for the better, which is exciting and finally gives me time to breathe! I did call McDonald’s and ask if I can be put back on the schedule. They said yes in a heartbeat and I went straight into full time manager training! Not my career choice, but it is pretty simple work that pays the bills! Speaking of bills, I moved out of my apartment and am living with my friends, Matt and Abel! That really cuts down on the bills!!! Trying to save a little money! Still need to get the Jeep repaired, but it will take a month in the shop! I might try driving for Uber a bit too. My friend says that is pretty good money!

Life is still improving, and I’m trying to enjoy it rather than just waiting for the next foot to fall. I guess now that it is June, I can give a few details about this amazing man that I have in my life still. His name is Kyle. We met out dancing one night. He is the definition of a gentleman and makes me realize why no other relationship has worked out before. Ladies, there are men out there who are perfect! Wait for him! One of my friends just went through a breakup and I love her response! She told me that she “can’t keep begging to keep someone around when God is taking them away! I don’t wanna miss my real husband.” Kyle and I aren’t even close to talking about marriage yet, but I am here to tell everyone that you should never settle for less than absolutely perfect! Keeping that in mind though, a great man will not be great to you if you don’t deserve it. These great men (they do seem to be pretty rare) deserve to have great women too.

Braedyn’s foot has healed so well! There is just a scar now, but he still limps a bit from habit. Sophia has two VERY wiggly teeth on the bottom! They are both having a great summer so far. I think we might visit the zoo soon! Definitely need to go camping.

So, remember that amazing job that I interviewed for, but unfortunately didn’t get? Well, they called me this past week! There is another position that was opening up soon and they WANTED me to apply for it!!!! The day the position was posted externally I applied and called them to let them know. He said that he will call to schedule an interview as soon as he hears from HR! I am so excited, but trying not to get too excited again! Time will tell!!! Hopefully that will be in my next update!

When It Rains, It Pours

Single momma life has just been getting harder and harder. I didn’t get that job I was really hoping for. I am still applying everywhere else that I can though! Not quitting!!! Finances are ridiculously tight right now. I have to figure out how to pay my rent by myself when we were only able to afford it by having multiple incomes in the house. I’m not eligible for any assistance because I’m not actually homeless. I am also trying to limit my work hours to school hours for now so I don’t have to pay a babysitter very much. I worked at McDonald’s before. I might just try to go back to that. It is at least something and I could pay the bills with that and Hallmark. I would have to sacrifice really any kind of social life and pray the babysitter could do overnights. I can do this!!!! What’s a little rain but something to make you appreciate the sunshine more, right?

So on to the pouring. My best friend, Arianna, had a sleepover last night since we both were scheduled to close tonight. We got some Teddy’s Bigger Burgers for lunch (amazingly delicious btw). We couldn’t stay long though because I had a meeting with Sophia’s teachers (concerned about a possible speech delay, which has been a long time concern). As we leave to go to the kids’ school, some young (18 year old) kid in a Ford F150 crashes right into the driver’s side of my nice pretty Jeep! Hit me hard enough to spin my Jeep 180°!!! There went my Tuesday, along with the possibility of me working, the door handle to my Jeep, and my poor tire that was just replaced!!! After a couple hours and a few dozen phone calls, my Jeep was towed away and Arianna and I were back at my house. She was ok and found a ride to work. I got the kids from school, rescheduled the meeting with Sophia’s teachers, and walked across the street to the ER. I am so sore!!! My elbow, neck, back, shoulder, and knee are all throbbing to various degrees. Thankfully they said nothing is broken and I should be ok within a couple days. Hopefully my Jeep gets fixed quickly! Until then we will  have a rental car and take it easy!!!!

Now about that sunshine!!! The weather of course in Hawaii is most of the time wonderful! I was going to try to get a tattoo this week, but that will definitely be put on hold now. Most of my sunshine now, besides from my munchkins, comes from the most amazing man I have had the pleasure to accidentally meet. I love spending time with him. He makes everything so easy. I am calm and peaceful arou d him and it is so natural to be with him and be myself. More details to come!!! There is a lot going on but I have to focus on some positives!

Good News to Come (hopefully)

Since I am now living life as a single momma to my amazing little munchkins, I have been applying to jobs like crazy!!!! I have a BS in Biology, but except for school, I have been too nervous to venture out into the career world of science. Been quite suddenly thrust on my own has changed that!!! I have applied to pretty much any job that I have come across. The ranges from service workers at hotels to restaurant servers to dental assistants and lab techs. I am almost just about willing to take any job that would be full-time and pay enough money to cover all my bills.

Monday morning, March 27th, I got a call first thing out of bed asking me to come in for an interview the next day. This position was as a cytology assistant at a lab here on Oahu. I went to the interview and think it went really well! This position would be absolutely perfect!!!! I don’t want to go into too many details, but I am hoping really hard!!!! I should know by the end of the week! Wish me luck and send good vibes!!! I’ll keep you posted!!!

Changing Tides

It has been quite a while since I’ve written anything on here. I’m not sure why, but I just haven’t made the time. There have been a lot of changes in the past nearly one year.

We took a few more camping trips. We almost went to Maui for a spontaneous weekend, but decided that the money would he better spent if the trip was planned out more. I went out to Laie Point and jumped off the cliff there into the waves below me. It was absolutely incredible. We’ve hiked Maunawili Falls and jumped off the falls at the end! My best friend got married and I was blessed enough to be a part of their big day! I have a new little brother, Hunter! He will be a year old on May 3, 2017!!!

My princess started Kindergarten!!! She absolutely loves it!!! She missed her first field trip to the Honolulu Zoo because we were going to Ohio for Bethany’s wedding, so the grandparents made up for it by taking us to the Indianapolis AND Columbus Zoos. Sophia also did dance class for a while. Braedyn is getting so big! He has lost and regrown his 4 front teeth! He is reading at the top of his 1st grade class, and he really wants to start playing soccer again so he can grow up to play soccer at Yale.

At the end of October though, we had some not so great changes. This blog has typically highlighted the happy, fun, awesome adventures. It doesn’t shine a light on the bad times though. It doesn’t point out when Stephen and I can barely stand each other or when we are exhausted from life. In late October, I realized that although there are some absolutely wonderful times we have shared together, I am not truly happy with him. I enjoy being around him as a friend, but unfortunately as a team/partnership/marriage, we don’t operate on the same page. For the sake of both of our privacy, I won’t elaborate with details. Primarily the downfall was that I felt I was putting my all into our marriage and he was not, resulting in me working harder to carry him through this adventure called life, not financially but rather in a day to day living kind of way. So on October 30, 2016, I told him we weren’t working out.

Since then it has gone from tolerable to bad to the worst. We no longer live together, which should have started soon after the falling out and would have prevented a lot of undue stress. Emotions were always running on high. We tried to be friends for the sake of the kids. We even had some good days. But those good days made it even harder for him to understand how we couldn’t be fixed. He is working with a chaplain now to get some help, but he eventually started to become violent. Domestiv violence is something that happens! It is something that is 100% unacceptable and unforgivable, but it is also something that should be discussed in society. I do not hate Stephen. I hate what he has done, regardless of the stress and situations that led up to it. I urge ANYONE, man, woman, or child, who is being abused physically, mentally, or emotionally, or being threatened, to please reach out. Reach out to anyone. Call the police. Call a friend. Tell somebody!!!!!! Reach out to me if you want! And if somebody reaches out to you, even if they are just mentioning it in passing, get them help!!!!! It takes so much to reach out and victims often bame themselves and try to protect their abuser. If someone reaches out, even for just a moment, they need you to help them immediately.

There are still more changes to come, with the divorce and the outcome of the domestic violence. I am optimistic that there are a lot of happy, more positive changes on the horizon soon though! In the meantime, I have made a lot of amazing memories, such as New Years Eve at Aloha Tower and St. Patrick’s Day in Chinatown, with some surprisingly close, new friends that I would never have known had these bad times not happened. There is always a silver lining!!!

Koko Crater Railway Trail

We took an amazing hike on March 17, 2016!!! We walked the entire way up the Koko Crater Railway Trail, totaling between 1000 and 1100 stairs!!! We even brought our dog, Maui, and he loved it! Sophia walked all the way up to the top and pretty much the entire way down all by herself with little to no complaints! I held her hand for most of the way down, simply because of the steepness of the stairs, but she wasn’t carried or pampered and did an amazing job!!! The view at the top was absolutely spectacular!!!!! We reached the top and ate some sandwiches for our lunch before walking around and exploring the top. The visibility was so great that we could see the outline of Molokai. There is a tunnel at the top leading into an old bunker that was pretty interesting to walk around inside. Stephen even found a geocaching coin from Germany that has been in there for a few years!!! Part of the way up the stairs there is a spot where the stairs are no longer on the solid ground, but rather form a bridge. It was so fun, although challenging for the kids and dog with their tiny legs, but it was so great!!! I highly recommend this hike to anyone visiting Oahu. We spent a total of about 4 hours round trip on the stairs, but this is MUCH longer than it typically takes. Tiny legs, but slow and steady was safe and still fun!

Pearl Harbor/Arizona Memorial/Pacific Aviation Museum

On March 16, 2016 the family took a trip to visit Pearl Harbor, the Arizona Memorial, and the Pacific Aviation Museum located on Ford Island. These sites are amazing and humbling and beautiful in a horrible way. These historic sites were fun in a small way, in that we got to see all of the planes in the museum and the remnants of such beautiful ships. It also ended up being a quiet learning day for the kids, who at 6 and 4 realize that death happens and our freedom in America comes at a cost. This trip was amazing from a historic perspective, which my husband truly enjoyed. We spent much of the day explaining to the kids what everything meant and why it was so important to understand. The questions of why the attack happened definitely came up, which also proved to be a wonderful experience in teaching such small, innocent people that although such horrible interactions between America and Japan took place, we are working towards cooperation with each other and with a mutual understanding of respect between us because sometimes bad things happen and we cannot hate everyone who is different than us or everyone who does us wrong. This post has a more somber tone to it much like the day itself did, but it was a wonderful, educational, and inspiring trip to see and teach the children from nonetheless.

Keaiwa Heiau Camping

I am a bit late posting this, but I have been busy with packing, cleaning, and classes. We had our first land adventure earlier this month! It obviously wasn’t our first ever, but it was our first since starting this blog.

We went camping March 11-13 at the Keaiwa Heiau State Park! It was beautiful, and fun, and cold.

We took a roughly 4 mile hike, had hot chocolate with marshmallows,and made smores. Our hike was along the Aiea Loop Trail. It had some incredible views!!! We even got to see the WWII airplane that had unfortunately crashed there on its second flight. Stephen went off trail a little to get some better pictures and a better look. We found a Jackson’s Chameleon. The kids, and the Boy Scout Troop we were hiking and camping near, got a history lesson about the plane and a biology lesson before we put him back. The children named him Pickles! Hopefully Pickles has a nice long life and will help educate more hikers.

In our tents, I was freezing!!! I had my wonderful plaid fleece pjs on (in Hawaii) and was curled up in my husband’s winter army sleeping system. The wind up there seeped through everything!!! Thankfully the hot fire and hot coffee in the morning was amazing! I recommend getting a french press if you don’t have one! Just boil the water and it works like tea! No coffee pot or electric needed. I loved our tent! We got it specifically for this trip because the kids would have their own tent and we would have the dog in ours, so Sophia’s teepee style owl tent wouldn’t work for them. We decided on this amazing 3 person tent. It was so easy to put up and I loved the awning in the front so I could keep shoes out of the rain and out of the tent. Then we slept in it. It was sweltering it there!!! We went to open the windows to let in some air, but we quickly realized that the wonderful tent that we loved so much could only have air flow if we go out of the tent and unzip the rainfly from the outside! This major design flaw really ruined the tent for us, so we are now looking into other options! We are always trying to improve our experiences. What we’ve learned from this adventure is that we need a tent with windows that open from the inside (preferably with the awning still), a lantern to see what we are eating if it gets dark quicker than expected, flip flops for everyone in case the ground in rocky at camp so we don’t wear boots the ENTIRE trip, and head lamps for everyone! We already can’t wait for our next trip!