Thursday, January 28, 2010

Our Aloha Tree

Yesterday I pulled a Scarlet O'Hara and proclaimed that I couldn't think about my aloha Christmas tree today and that I would think about it tomorrow.

Well, today is tomorrow . . . so I guess I should make good on my word and think about it. 

But, GOSH DARNIT, thinking about it makes me sweat like a Kalua pig. Especially around the eyeball area. Nevertheless, I will tell you about my aloha tree. Today.


This past Christmas was our very first one away from our island home so we wanted our tree to be special, (in that sweet-spirit, nice-personality sorta way).

I was pretty much in LUB with Christmas in Hawaii. It was the most delightful time of year, jam-packed with research papers and grading deadlines, not to mention my annual elementary school Christmas program slide shows assignment. 

For us, Christmas meant rain and flooding and soccer finals and Jack Johnson and Tennis tournaments and History Day competitions. 

It was that special time of year when I got to sabotage the neighborhood cookie exchange and passively resist my x-door neighbor, Martha's peer pressure to put up the Christmas lights before the neighborhood potluck. 

And of course there was always the annual baptism by soft scrub ritual on my house to prepare for 45 days of in-laws.

It honestly was the most wonderful time of the year so we knew we needed to put up a meaningful tree to pay homage--a tree with purpose. I usually don't care about meaning or purpose but when you live with one foot here and one foot there, (and the pacific ocean in between), the most seemingly insignificant things--like tiny grains of leftover sand on your folding soccer chairs--are like chicken soup for the soul.

Moving makes you weird that way because you had this life--this full, rich, bee-U-tiful life. And you live this life over and over, again and again, day in and out and in and out, year after year after year after year. Then one day you up and move on and start another full, rich, bee-U-tiful life and pretty soon you begin to suspect that your first life may have been just a full, rich, bee-U-tiful dream.

That makes you all kinds of crazy.

You get me?

I mean, to just stand there and watch your children's childhood slip away like water through a net . . . 

and there ain't nothin' you can do about it . . .

 except log onto Facebook and chat with their best friends . . . 

it's beyond all descriptive adverbs and adjectives.

Needless to say, our aloha tree was the proof we needed to remind us that we really did exist on an island far, far away, not so long, long ago.

We began by tying all of our aloha oe' leis together and wrapping them around the tree like a great big garland hug.
Next we filled glass balls with sand from our aquarium--Pupukea beach sand, which was our therapy beach because the sand magically sucks all he tension out of your body through your feet.

Then we hung all the shells I collected over the years from Melekahana beach during our early morning walks. 

Plus some of the incredible shells I found on a beach in New Zealand between Rotorua and Aukland while traveling with the History Dept. at BYU-H.

It was all very sweet and sentimental. But then one morning, we heard a crash.

As if to say, "this life is over, deal with it!" our tree came tumbling down and all of our memories were smashed and scattered across the floor.


Wait! Don't feel sorry for me yet, peeps.  It didn't happen just once.  It happened TWICE! 

I stomped my feet and shook my fists at the tree-tipping gods, but then I went to work putting our memories back together and restoring them to their proper place on our aloha tree. 


(And, for the record, I would have done it again and again because those memories are MINE and no one, not even those Murphy lawyers or those gravity lawyers can take them from me!)

But that was yesterday . . . 

And I can't think that today. 


OldBoatGuy said...

When life gets tough, the tough go shopping.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

What the what? You silly Old Boat guy. Are you seriously giving me permission to go shopping? While at the same time inferring that I'm not tough if I don't? ;)

springrose said...

Your tree was so beautiful!! What a great idea, to combine memories and it looked fab! But how sad to see it all spilled on the floor like that! Now I want to move to Hawaii, do you think they would accept me more then Utah did?

springrose said...

I should probably let you know I can be kind of bossy and don't get my panties in a wad then try to pick a fight with me, it won't be pretty! Just ask the lady at the oral surgeons office from today!!!!

Homer and Queen said...

I'm with old boat guy...go shopping!!! I am BFF might move to Hawaii. I will seriously shrivel up and die.

OldBoatGuy said...

That's the way a woman is, say something and they take it two ways. Boy am I glad I'm single. HeeHee

Martha said...

Yeah, go shopping for more empty glass ornaments and when you come to Hawaii this summer we'll fill them up with sand again. That will show the universe. You can't take Hawaii out of the girl!!!

So I had a dream last night that Jim and I were walking through a parking lot at a mall. It was all snowy and slushy and we were freezing. We were munching on like a big apple danish thing. We looked up and Tatum and Al were driving past in the Santa Fe. We couldn't believe we ran into them and were so excited to see them. They got out and all Alan could think about is how he wanted a bite of my apple danish. That's it, then I woke up. (Maybe I shouldn't post this because Sandi will say it means something.) So don't even go there Sandi.

Martha said...

Oh, yeah glad T is feeling better.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

I'm in a rush, but LOLOLOL. I can't wait to hear what Sandi has to say about that dream. LOLOLOL

Sandi said...

well how can I resist? Martha Martha need counseling! It is obvious that the big apple danish thing you were referring to was your juicy inviting neck and you were hoping that "Al" was actually "Edward" and that he was craving a big bite of that "danish" or something like that. Sorry. I couldn't think of anything really good. I'm tired. I'm grouchy. I'm cold. And seeing those aloha oe' leis made me get a little teary. And I don't even know you people!!!!!!!! ( must be that time of the month) and I'm pretty sure I am going to want to come back in about 2 minutes and delete this comment!

Just SO said...

What a beautiful Aloha tree! I would have put it back together twice or as many times as needed as well.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

ha ha ha Sandi. Love the Edward spin. hee hee I'm glad you didn't delete that dream interp. It's pretty darn good for someone so tired, grouchy and cold. Sorry, girl. Those leis are sad, aren't they! Sniff. You know how it is.

So I think the dream is so cute. I'm so glad that you and Jimmy ran into us in your dream. And I'm glad we stopped and didn't blow you off. So did you give Al a bite of your danish? I know exactly what the dream means. It means that you are tune with our emotional longings. You know you still have something that we no longer have and that we will always crave. The proof is in this post. You are still plugged into with our inner workings. That's what living 15 feet away from us for 10 years will do to a person.

And that's RIGHT! You can't take the Hawaii out of the girl!

Old Boat Guy, ha ha ha That was a good one. You're so sharp you can almost keep up with me. ;)

Queen, NO! What part?

Springrose, ha ha I can't really picture sweet litte ole' you with your panties in a wad.

Jillybean said...

I love the tree!

I had a friend who's cat kept jumping in her Christmas tree and knocking it over. She ended up hanging it from the ceiling so when the cat took a flying leap into it, it just started swinging instead of falling over.
Maybe you should try that?

Martha said...

Ok, I set myself up for that one Sandi. But for real, that was my dream.

My interpretation is that when you all left Al here by himself for a whole week with no food (except for Theresa's chicken). He kept coming over to warm it up because he had no microwave. I felt so sorry for him. So the next day I made him one of my special ham sandwiches. Tommy took it out to him as he drove in the driveway. Al was standing there for a minute, just holding the sandwich. Then he came to our door and said, "Hey, um, can I come sit on your couch and eat my sandwich?" Poor guy didn't have a chair to sit on or any company to eat with.

So the danish just represents how hungry I remember him being at that time. And yes, I did give him a bite.

Martha said...

While we are interpreting things here.... I think your tree was a Utah tree and wasn't too happy that you were trying to turn it into an Aloha tree. It had so much inner turmoil that it just threw itself to the ground.

Sandi said...

I am feeling a little less grumpy today- but now I am wondering why on earth you didn't put your Christmas hymn book BONUS on your tree?
Martha almost brought a tear to my eye with that sandwich story. Maybe I should quit giving her crap about bossing swirl around about that computer/camera cord..or whatever that was?!

SWIRL said...

Hi all!
I find it hard to come here often... it makes me feel like- I can comment.. then just run next door and laugh with crash while crashing on her couch-- while they sort a floor full of history day pictures and while T and her friends are in costume practicing their performance for HD (history day)....
I know I was one of tbe big supporters for you guys to move-- but... I get a little tug..

ANYWAY -- those darn red threads--
Now I can't remember what I was going to say.