Wednesday, December 23, 2009

This Holiday Season

Aloha all, where ever you may be. We hope you are all doing well and find some time for peace this christmas. . .We have not been good blogers for the past few months, and that is because we got caught up in the Farmville frenzy. But we are back and in time to wish you all a merry christmas. After the many experiences we have had this year we are happy to tell you all is well. We still work around the corner from each other and get to ride to work together, eat lunch together, and ride home. We no longer have callings in the Primary. We are the Singles Couple Advisor. It has been awhile since thinking like a single adult, but we love the challenge and the people. . . even if we miss the Primary. My company held our annual christmas party at the bowling center again. . it was on Mom's birthday so I invited the family to attend. It was soooo much fun. Even little Rachael got a strike. Enoka and I got to help with the ward christmas food fest. We represented Samoa, with the best Chop Suey a tongan could make (nah, his sister made it for me). Enoka was going to play santa until we discovered the suit was to small for his round bellie!!!!! But all is well with us. . and we hope all is well with you!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Where is Justice

And I do mean the real justice. . not, "King Justice" (Can't touch this)

Ever been asked to do something you know is illegal? Immoral? Unethical? and overall in bad form?

Yup that was me over the weekend. Told to do something straight from the top boss and immediately wanted to call Department of Labor. I argued as much as possible about not doing it, but fearing that the boss would fire me on the spot. . followed through! Part of me says just ignore it. It has nothing to do with you. Keep your job, the economy is bad enough as it is. The other half says, "What the Hell? Who the Hell? and How the Hell?" sorry for the harsh language. But I just want to scream. It has nothing to do with me having to do more work, it has everything to do with the companies decision to make an example out of one person. One person who is sincere at heart and who made a mistake almost a year ago and has been illegally penalized in a large financial way now.

I called my trusty dad for advice. He wasn't the best HR manager PCC ever had for nothing. (Sorry Matt, I'm bias) His advice, don't do anything. And he is right. Although this company deserves to be reported, If I do it, or if I tell someone to do it, it will end up hurting me in the long run. Bad enough this company is run by some of the best members of the church that I know. . . it's just crazy and I have to vent!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

July VT Message

Dear Sisters,

Because I have family living in Laie, I travel down there several times a month. I must admit, while it is under construction it does not look very inviting. It has been an automatic habit of mine to gaze upward towards the temple each time I pass it. For the past few months that it has been under construction, I have gazed up only to be in shock that it is grey instead of white, the water that flows down in front is gone, and the flowers are no where to be seen. Even though I know what I should expect, it is still a shock to me when I see it. Normally the temple stands out. Right now it just looks like a big house on a hill, nothing special, nothing curious, and nothing to draw me to it.

Have you ever had a yearning for something but didn’t know how to satisfy the need or want? Seen something on the television or out in the world that you’ve always wanted to do or be a part of but haven’t had the chance? I know for me there are a handful of things I could name off the back of my hand. That little twinge of want/need is how I feel about the temple. Especially since it is closed right now. Trying to live life right is always hard, but I find that not having the temple to turn to, to be allowed in, to find solace and peace during the past few months has been really hard. It reminds me of when I was younger. I would exercise every night by walking one of 3 different routes. All of them ended with stretches outside the temple grounds. Seeing it all lit up with water fountains and waterfalls flowing, missionaries walking all over the grounds and happy people coming and going from the place all the time made me long to be part of that. When it was finally my turn to enter, I could not believe my ears. Some of the first promises and blessings that were given to me made me happier than ever in my life. I wanted to go again and again. I tried to go as often as possible. I wanted to learn as much as I could. Later, after I had returned from my mission, I learned first hand how going to the temple not only teaches you but also gives you peace, and strength, and answers. For me the feeling starts before I even enter the temple. The pride and care I take with the temple clothes, while I am cleaning them or ironing them, or even packing them I am focused on the trip and on our Heavenly Father. As I ride down to Laie, the music and topic of conversation are focused on the Savior. Once I am in the temple I still get butterflies before I am able to enter the final room, and then I try to make sure I have planned for enough time to spend there before I go back into the real world. Sometimes I feel exhausted, sometimes I feel excited, but I always feel loved and peace.

Sisters, I hope you can reflect upon a time that you have been to the temple. If you haven’t been through, I encourage you to prepare to go. There are few times and experiences I have had that equal the love I have felt while in the Lords own home.

I pray you can ready yourself for the re-dedication and re-opening of the temple.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wedding Cake

Here's the cake I made for Ed's wedding.. .petals were added by his mom.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Those silly forwards!

I constantly get emails that warn me to reply. . well I am replying to anyone who wants to read, by. . .. .posting it to my blog.

If you opened it, you have to do it (it only takes a couple minutes. I Promise!) Then, send it back to the person who sent it to you and the rest of your friends!
Six names you go by:
1. Kalei
2. Helen
3. Sis
4. Hon
5. Babe
6. Hey you!
Three things you are wearing right now:
1. Jean Skirt
2. Tan Shirt
3. Bass Sandals
Three things you want very badly at the moment:
1. More Sleep
2. More Time
3. More Nieces and Nephews
Three People who will fill this out:
1. ?
2. ?
3. ?
Three things you did last night:
1. Heated up leftovers for dinner
2. Memorized JSH 1:15-20
3. Got free cookies from Foodland with my Maikai Rewards ~*~**~~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~~*
Three things you ate today:
1. Nothing yet
Three people you last talked to on the phone:
1. Officer Bush
2. Stranger – called the wrong number
3. Enoka
Three things you are going to do tomorrow:
1. Smile
2. Process Payroll
3. Feed my fishes
Three favorite beverages:
1. Water
2. Jamba – Lime it Up!
3. Pepsi
Here's what you're supposed to do.... And please do not spoil the fun. Hit forward, delete my answers and type in your answers. Then send this to a whole bunch of people you know INCLUDING ME

Monday, March 30, 2009

A Day with the Girls

Mom brought the girls in on Friday. We had lunch at Ala MoanaAdd Video, went to build a bear, Jungle Fun, and spent some time with the Koi. . .Rachael loved it. She kept waving at them and giggling with delight. . .

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Laman. . . Moenoa Style

Stake Primary Quarterly Act. . . .we set up the 2 cultral halls as different dispensations . . .We had the Garden of Eden, Moses and the children of Israel, Noah and his boat full of animals, Joseph and the workshop, and then us. . .Lehi's family. . . .Enoka played Laman. . .the kids loved it. We had to put on this 25 minute play 5 times. We were voted the most loved! Of course it was mostly the hubbys but they did a great job. The high light for most was when Enoka (Laman) was shocked by Nephi right before they built the boat! . . . The cutest part. . .when the 3 year old child started to cry, "mommy, mommy Nephi is tied up. . .he's gonna hurt". Wish you all were there. I think Enoka really had a great time! (He's th eone in the white/purple)

Friday, February 27, 2009

Happy Birthday to me!

Okay most people want to be around others on their birthday, but this year I opted for rest!
I got phone calls from the girls and mom, dad, and viena early in the morning. All singing their rendition of Happy Birthday. Then one from Lisi at noon and then one from her at one, and then again at two. Yup, we just kept talking. Larie called about 5ish, and then Enoka came home with flowers (dozen red roses), chocolate (a king size hershy bar with almonds) and a card (the best homemade card one can make with hi-lighters. ..I'll try to get a picture on here - I also got a card from Robbie and emails from the co-workers.

With all the time I had, I could have been as productive as Iwa, but it was my birthday so I didn't clean the house. I did pay a few bills, and re-take the census test. . .I got a 27 out of 28. . .it really killed me! I couldn't believe it. it was one of the easiest questions. . .what is the definition of controversial?
a.) debatable
b.) ?
c.) political
I knew the answer was letter a, so why did i select b? one wrong, most people would Cheer, I felt defeated!

I went to look for a birthday cake, couldn't find one I wanted so I went home and baked one myself. Yellow with mini chocolate chips inside. it was yummy especially with all the ice cream Noka brought home. Dinner was cooked by Noka, his potato salad and steak, we were going to have lobster tails too(on sale foodland 10.99 a tail) but they were all out :{ but the steak was perfect. Besides who would want to spend 10.99 on something like that!

So Birthday Wisdom: I can't really be 37, I just saw Stephanie from the Bachelor and if she is 34 then I am only twenty something. . .is that mean? I swear she must be 50 something!
This year is going to be different. Not only were my prayers answered about primary (I've been praying for a change- hoping it was me but am grateful for a new presidency). I am no longer going to be spending money on just anything~not that I have it to spend, but from now on, I will be in control of my finances. I will cook more and eat out less- we seem to be happier eating in. . .and most of all I will make today the last time I forget to put on my bra before I go to work!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Feb 2009 VT Message

Dear Sister:

As I mentioned last month, my goal this year is to increase my Faith in the Savior. No sooner had I committed to this did my challenges start. Have I ever shared anything from my professional life with you? Well if not, this month I will.

I work for a private company who is contracted by the State to provide personal assistance to those with Developmental Disabilities and/or Mental Retardation. I would say that about 91% of our income comes from the State. We have a little over 100 employees and about 60 participants.

My job in the company is to run the Fiscal/Accounting office. Make sure all the bills go out and all the payments come in. Well, in mid January I started getting concerned about our payments coming in. Only one had come in and it was a very small amount. My boss (also a member of this church) did not see any real concerns, after all the state always pays up. . .right? Not this time. They had some problems within their DAGS (department of accounting and general services) office. Our payments would be delayed by at least 10 business days. (Remember this was mid January). We paid our employees on January 23, not knowing this would be the last time we would see a paycheck for another month. The boss never got worried; after all we were owed the money. Well the money never came.

As the person who answers most of the incoming calls, I can attest to the hardship many families had to face. I could go on and on about employees whose water, electric, and/or gas got turned off. Of families whose pantries were bare. I heard stories of employees whose landlord was not so kind and kicked them out. People being told their cars would be repossessed. It has not been a great month. My family had to turn to our food storage and we prayed a lot. Morning, noon, and night.

Throughout the month we would call the State several times a day because our workers needed the money so badly. They would sound so promising. . .telling us they see payments in the system and we should get them in the next 2-3 days. We would continue to call each day and be told the same thing. Each time we heard of a possible payment the morale of the employees would go up. When they didn’t keep their word, it would go back down, just because most of us were in desperate need to get some money, any money just so our creditors would stop the calls, and we could put real food on the table. I had some worries too. I had taken inventory of the home and knew we only had enough toilet paper for one week. Dishwashing liquid was nearly gone, and there was no fresh vegetables in the house. No pay check meant no gas money – only ½ a tank in the car, we would still have my husbands check but it was so much smaller than mine that it barely covered the bills. Well we decided we would pay the bills and live off of the food in the cupboard. I knew we could eat pancakes for 2 weeks if we had too. We prayed and put our plan into action.

This is what I know now. . . Heavenly Father allows us modern day miracles. The employees called every day. Many whose situation was getting gravely worse. Only 2 of them ever actually threatened us. The rest continued to pray and be hopeful. After 3 weeks of no pay, most were at their wits end. I went into our pantry and actually started making little gift baskets for those who were literally down to their last cup of rice or last can of Vienna sausage. We knew the more we shared the sooner we too would be out of food. But we gave anyway. Finally nearly 5 weeks later, we’ve received a payment from the State, large enough to pay our employees.

So what is the miracle? What blessing might I have received from all this? How has my faith increased? Some how we have enough toilet paper for 2 more weeks, we still have canned food in our pantry even with all the food we gave away. The gas never ran out of our car. Every single bill I had was paid and nothing got cut off. Our creditors that we called to see if we could pay them late – every single one of them said yes and none of them charged us late fees or penalties.

With all the problems we could have had and should have had, we made it to all our church meetings, we didn’t have to borrow money from family to get through, we relied on our Savior, we put everything in his hands, we leaned on him during times of trials and hardship and he did not forget us.

A few days ago I got to call every employee to let them know the State was able to locate the problem and find the money. Although none of them are members of this church, every single one of them gave praise to our Savior Jesus Christ. Every one of them had the right to be angry, every one of them had the right to walk out on our company and leave us hanging. But instead every single individual praised our Savior Jesus Christ. I think this is the greatest miracle of all. Knowing that in our time of hardship and need, instead of playing the blame game, instead of acting out in anger, every person in our company turned to a higher power to get them through, and when it was all over and done with they turned back to that power to give him all the credit. It has truly been my honor to see this unfold from beginning to end.

My testimony of our Heavenly Fathers’ love for us, and His knowledge of our individual needs has increased. I hope I never forget the miracles He brought into my life and how personal they are. He knows who you are and he hasn’t forgotten you. I am grateful to know I am his daughter.

Friday, February 13, 2009

What Lesson Should I Be Learning?

We all know the State of Hawaii is in dire straights but I am trying to learn the lesson presented before me so I can pass this "test" and receive my blessings, rewards, just anything that will help me.

As you might remember my goal this year is to increase my faith. . .well, no sooner did I make this goal, the chance to exercise faith came into play.

The Story:
Our company is contracted by the State. 89.5% of our income comes directly from them. Back in January we got note that the funds going to our company and others similar to ours [120 companies who provide services and support for those in the MR/DD division (Mental Retardation / Developmental Disabilities)] were transferred to the wrong account. Because, of the shortage in employees in DAGS they would probably take up to 10 days to find the mistake and fix it. At the same time I remember seeing a small article in the newspaper stating that Linda Lingle is freezing all payments to their vendors (again us being one of them) I couldn't imagine them delaying payment - well now it is 60 days later and we just got word that may be in another week we will see some sort of relief. Our company had enough funds to cover 3 pay periods but not enough to cover the last one a week ago.

So for the last week we have been getting calls on a daily basis. Employees' who's electric, water, gas have been turned off, people who need to pay their mortgages/ rent, people who are the only wage earners in their homes and have gotten to the point that they have nothing left. Enoka and I have actually done okay. . .when I found out we wouldn't have any income for a while we sat down and made a menu with the things we had left in our pantry. We feasted on Saturday with the gift card we got from our secret santa, we got the free milk from foodland (thanks Iwa). We did splurge and buy some eggs and have had pancakes more often than I'd like to admit. Well the 10 days came and went. We received a call from the State yesterday. . .rumor has it that we might get paid next Wednesday. Enoka and I? We don't have anything except marshmallows in the freezer, we have shared our canned foods from our pantry with another co-worker who was down to her last 2 cups of rice and 4 cans of vienna sausage to feed her family of 8 a few days ago. We have enough to keep going a ways more. And every time we open the cupboards to create another meal...the food is there. I really think it is a miracle of sorts. At the same time I thought to myself, I've fasted and I've prayed, not just for myself but for others who are in need. We haven't needed to ask family for help. We have been able to pay all our bills. Our health is good. Our chance to serve others has increased. Our trust in the lord has been strengthened, and my prayers have been answered but not my specific request. Does that make sense? Heavenly Father has literally blessed me with everything I need and more. I have paid all my bills, I have money for gas and the things I need. Per my inventory I should have run out of toilet paper a week ago and when I checked the storage last night I have enough for minimum of 3 weeks more. The little things like laundry soap and toothpaste and shampoo and just the odds and ends that can add up once a month. . . I have enough for several more months - I am not a hoarder, we shouldn't have as much as we do, but we do! Even quarters for laundry - I have enough for at least 2 more months worth! How? Why? Where did this all come from? My calculations say I should have run out a week ago. My supply closet tells a completely different story.

I just know I'm grateful. I'm humbled and amazed. I am blessed that I can share these things with others and my cup. . . literally runneth over. . . now that I look back, perhaps the blessings and rewards have already been given and I didn't realize it. hmmm. . . .

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Are you the gifter or the giftee?
So I got this from Iwa. I am wondering if I respond to hers and she responds to me does that cancel us out or do we both get unexpected gifts?

The first 3 people to leave a comment on this post will receive a hand made gift from me during this year. When and what will be a surprise, you won't know.

There's a small catch.....You knew there had to be one be didn't you? So here it goes.........Post this on your blog then come back and leave a comment, telling me your in. Fun, huh?

Good Luck

Monday, February 2, 2009

So close!

Okay you Cardinals fans . . .

I know I heard we lost. Thank goodness my real team didn't make it to the superbowl or else I'd be really upset.

Enoka talked me into skipping the last hour of church so we could make it home to the game. . .of course we missed the first quarter and "our team" AZ Cardinals were behind. . . they came back in the 2nd half and if Francisco (yup from Kahuku) didn't slip, they could have won. . .there was yelling and cheering and screaming coming out of my hubby until the final 2 minutes when Eagles had the ball and marched it back to win the game. . .and then complete silence. . for the rest of the night.

I think the "Big E" might be in mourning but I have to admit, I am smiling on the inside. . .I finally get my hubby back for the next few months and just in time too, my to do list was getting really long!

So if you see Noka, rub it in that he lost and Fale won. . .then lecture him on what happens when you don't put the Lord first. . .nah I think he may have learned his lesson!

Friday, January 30, 2009


I am a letter writing Visiting Teacher -

I've decided to start posting my monthly letters, here's January 09:

Dear Sisters. . .

I know it feels like a while since I’ve written and I apologize. We found out in November that we had to move, our apartments were sold and turned into a church parking lot. . . .(just like the song- Paved Paradise and Put up a Parking Lot)

The hubby and I exercised Faith and prayed constantly!!!!! We found a place right outside of our ward boundaries, I wasn’t sure if they would let us stay in the ward, but so far so good. I am sending this letter on the back of a copy the months visiting teaching message so that you can read some of the wonderful quotes yourself.

As is the tradition for many at the end/beginning of each year, I sat down and thought about the goals I wanted to make for this year. . . My most prevalent is to increase my Faith. I have been reading from John H. Groberg’s book “Fire of Faith”. He shares of his experiences while serving as mission president in Tonga. For those of you who don’t know, I am ½ Tongan. The stories of these faithful saints have not just been entertaining to me, but have struck a deeper chord in my soul. I keep thinking to myself; “I come from these faithful all believing, all trusting in God saints” I know that somewhere in me I have the strength to become as faithful as them. That is what I want to do. So I am making it a goal to be more prayerful, more truthful, more loving, more forgiving, more valiant, in short – more Faithful.

As the year goes on and I get to share with you my experiences, I am hopeful and even a little apprehensive that I will have Faith promoting experiences that I can share with you.
I say a little apprehensive because I have learned when I am not seeking to grow or learn in the gospel or in my testimony – my life seems so much easier. No challenges, not too much heartache, not too much struggling. But when I sit and think about it, there is sadness. I know in my heart that I am the reason I feel distance from the Lord. I have felt like a kid on a sidewalk with my face pressed up to the window looking into a candy store- seeing all these wonderful treats and blessings and joys. I desire them with all my heart, but have no money and am not allowed in.

Well I hope not anymore. I don’t want to be that person. I am ready to do the work, I am ready to earn the privilege to enter and partake. I hope you are too. I am truly grateful that I will be able to share part of this journey with you each month.

God bless you and keep you in all that you do each day is my true desire.

Much Love,

Sister Helen Moenoa

Monday, January 26, 2009

You forgot to give me my candy!

This year the Valiants are studying the Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price. Our class is in the middle of the Joseph Smith History. To help them better understand the idea that Joseph had to wait 4 years to retrieve the plates. . . I covered candy bars in gold wrapping, and wrote on them "My Chocolate Golden Plate" with a reference to JSH.. . .I was smart enough to put them into a clear container and then tape it shut. . . and I say smart because through out the lesson children kept trying to get at the candy. They will need to wait several more lessons, or until Joseph is to retrieve the plate (Lesson 6) before they can. Just like Joseph had to visit with Moroni and be interviewed and trained, the children also must prepare by completing a few challenges on their own. They must memorize an article of faith, write a few sentences and fill in a few blanks in their activity book. (We have give each child a marble notebook and include handouts inside them for each lesson.) After the lesson was over, the prayer was said and it was time for us to go down to singing time. . . several of the children (I guess they weren't listening) came running back to remind me "Sister Moenoa, you forgot to give me my candy". . .oh well I hope they earn them in a few weeks.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Smart and Silly

Because I don't have children of my own, I never know what they are really like. I get to see the nieces and nephews on occasion but to know if they are really well balanced. . .I'm clueless. Well until this weekend. I got a glimpse of ones life and was surprised at what I learned.

Riah was in the Jr. League Lego Robotics Competition. Because I was not a parent Enoka and I volunteered to help with the challenge.

Basically the teams had to study the climate of an area and then come up with a robot to help with that study. At the competition they had to display their finding and a model of the robot. Half the team stayed with the project and the other half came with me to preassigned schools and asked questions.

I was so impressed with how knowledgeable and informed and formal Riah was with the project and with her inquires of other schools and the such. She seamed so smart and mature for her age. Not afraid to ask, and learn and share. I thought, could any 9 year old really be this impressive?

As soon as it was over, all the kids in the team started to run around like the Kuaina from the Country that they were sliding all over the place and having fun.. . .then we went to dinner at Sizzlers and immediately she kicked off her shoes and kept making ice cream and having fun. I thought to myself. How lucky and how well rounded. She truly is a happy spirit with a well balanced life. Not too many children today have that. Good for her and her parents!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Census Update

Okay so we both took the test and we passed! We also learned a little more about the census jobs. Each assignment last for 5-10 weeks and then we have the chance to get re-assigned. We walk around the neighborhood with handheld computers verifying addresses. (Making sure nothing new is put up and nothing has been torn down.) If we want, around April of next year we will be going to specific addresses only if they did not return their census card. Not too shabby for a part time job. . . .and all that exercise! Cant wait. . . .let me know if you have any questions about it!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Makes Census 2010

After Iwa's birthday party we brought aunty Lexi back to town and on the way she was talking about the Census - looking for jobs here in Hawaii. We went online ( and got all the info, called the number and made appointments. We actually called twice, once for me and once for Enoka. Both times they gave us the info. Test in Kailua on Wednesday at 5:30pm. . .Twice it shows in my notes, Wednesday, Kailua, 5:30. . .and we spoke with 2 different people each time. . .So how come when I showed up at the Elem. School, they laughed at me and said, "uh, I don't know about any test today. The Library has an art show that you can visit, but the flyer's we are passing out say tomorrow. Okay I didn't feel dumb about the whole thing, but I certainly was glad that Enoka is willing to go back again today. . . I really hope we get hired. The job could last from 6 weeks to 2 years and pays $17 hr. for part time work. . . Our goal? try and pay off the car! I think it would be worth it.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Broke da mout!

Okay so during the holidays as everyone is in the giving mood. One of my co-workers made these wonderful melt in your mouth cookies to die for. . .White Chocolate/Cranberry shortbread cookies. They were sooo good infact, Enoka wanted to know where he could buy them from cause he wanted to give them to everyone for Christmas. (He opened them without me knowing and ate all but one!) Well Samantha gave me her recipe (so easy, only 5 ingredients) and my foodland finally restocked the white chocolate chips so I tried it last night. Just as wonderful as I remember! If you want to try a great recipe here it is.

4 c. flour
1 c. sugar
2 c. butter (I used salted) at room temp.
1 c. dried cranberries
1 c. white chocolate chips

cream the butter and sugar, slowly mix in the flour. Add the cranberries and white chocolate chips. Form into 1 inch balls and flatten on cookie sheet. Bake for 8-10 min at 350.

They look white (almost raw when you pull them out) but let it sit for a minute before moving to a cooling rack and then let it cool for 4-5 minutes more.

I promise they are worth the wait and the effort! I bet nuts would be good too!

Monday, January 5, 2009

What new years resolutions?

So we did come up with some goals for the new year. . . most about getting healthier and eating better. . .but just like Iwa, I think ours starts in February.

So my week ended with Dinner at Mom's. I guess the gang in Laie has this standing tradition - they get together on Fast Sundays to break the fast. . .Since Lisi is leaving on Tuesday back to the frigid cold winter in Provo. We invited ourselves. Mom and Iwa baked potatoes, prepped nacho cheese, broccoli, and all the topping of a potato bar. Abe and Larie made chili. Fale and Kappy brought soda, and I made a couple pans of mom's cornbread. The food was great and all the toppings too. So great in fact that most of us skipped the potatoes and ate everything else. Sharon was the most unique. She had rice with cheese. . . . .nothing else. It was so much fun that Dad had to keep reminding us that we had neighbors and we needed to quiet down. I didn't want to leave, but had to work in the morning so Moenoa's made their famous Exit and back to town for us.

Saturday came with no great surprise until Mother called and invited me to lunch with the gang (all the sisters but Kappy {we really missed you} and Aunty Lexie who is down here defrosting from the Indiana snow (too bad about the colts :{) It was Macaroni Grill. . .now with such a large group we could have done it family style. . .but we all ordered our own plates and then just kept passing the plates around the table. I think Viena's was the best - shrimp and chicken scaloppini with capers, artichoke hearts, and all kinds of Yummy. . . .but the ravioli dessert came in a close second. For all the chocolate lovers out there, this was one dessert to die for.

We spent the First Day of 2009 in Nalo with the Moenoa side of the family. Of course we couldn't go empty handed so we had to stop for some noodles in Kailua and we could smell the roast pork. Enoka asked for a few pounds and got the reply in a thick chinee accent that could only come from one who has grown up here wit pidgon english, 'You like a small chop?, You like big chop? You like a chop chop? What you like? I give you!'

New Years Eve should only be spent in Hawaii. It's the only place I know that you can stay home and watch millions be blown up for free. We spent the evening in Aina Haina. The Yoshidas had a massive Hawaiian buffet. So ono in fact that officers patrolled their home all night for grindz. Of course that made it hard for the pyro's across the street. Each time a cop pulled up for a plate. . .they had to hide the goods again. But the view across the ridge was awesome. I'm so glad that new years only cost me two dozen malasadas for a spectacular show like that!

On a sentimental note. It also marks 9 years to the day of our first meeting (Enoka & I). We wish Luna was here to celebrate with us!