Monday, March 20, 2017

Thorgert Karl Beck

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make
 you something else is the greatest accomplishment.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

If I could, I would choose him for a dad all over again.
I'm so thankful for the many gifts he gave me---
and I'm already missing him beyond words.

Thorgert Karl Beck

Click here to see more photos that make me smile.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Family Pictures

While we were in Kauai we met with a photographer on Kealia Beach and just recently received the photos.

 This was my birthday present to myself....something I have never done before.

I'm thankful to have had this moment in time captured so beautifully.
 (by Kristin from Swell Photography)

Friday, January 27, 2017

She Recovers


I'm really proud to have been asked to write this guest blog post for an organization I believe in so much. 
"She Recovers" has become a big part of my life in the last few years
 and I'm excited to be swinging the doors wide open as they present themselves.

Sunday, January 8, 2017


Our hearts are hurting at the loss of (Uncle) Kevin,
shown here holding his baby brother, Mitch.

He was a gentle giant of a man and he will be dearly missed.

Kevin Bradley Graves
March 29th, 1959-January 5th, 2017

Life is eternal and love is immortal
and death is only a horizon;
and a horizon is nothing
 save the limit of our sight.
~Rossiter Worthington Raymond

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year

A year ago today, I began to use a new app on my phone.

It has turned out to be a tool similar to my gratitude practice...
helping me to see my day a little differently...
looking for the beauty, which is sometimes easy, 
but often found in the ordinary things.
 It's amazing how just a second
 can bring back so much flavor of the day and collectively, the year.
I highly recommend it to everybody.

So, here is my 2016.
 I can't wait to see what the seconds of 2017 have to bring.

Thank you for being a part of my life.
Happy, happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Kauai, Part 4

The day after my birthday, I started my New Year off right by riding a bike for the first time in 40 (!) years.

We rode for 8 gorgeous miles.

We also stopped at our favorite Shave Ice place.

I loved every minute of it!

Later that day, the kids swam at our local beach and I got a kick out of this dog who came up at sat down right in front of me and seemed to be watching them, too.
(It turns out his owner was out there surfing.)

We did laundry, Hawaiian style...

...and Zack and Eli made their way up this giant tree.

Zack found this giant snail at the park. 
While it looks like it belongs in the water, Google told us that it's actually a giant land snail!

The property we stayed on had a second rental on it which worked perfectly for our big group 
and for Nana to have her own space.

Mitch arrived on Wednesday and she took off on Thursday.  I took over her peaceful quarters, which was a treat! The whole trip continued the feeling of "Family Twister" we've had all year, in a very positive way.

As we loaded the car up to take Mom to the airport, 
this rainbow appeared.

After dropping her off we went up to see Wailua Falls.
This was the waterfall featured on the old Fantasy Island show.

We enjoyed our vantage point...while Zack hiked down and got a whole different angle (!):

It was so nice to have time enough to relax but also time enough for outings.
We're glad we drove out to the historic Kilauea Lighthouse.
It was so scenic and such a great place to watch the giant waves crash against the rocks.

This rooster who lived there was picture perfect.

We played at a beautiful miniature golf course with lots of water hazards!

Back at the beach with the lighthouse in the background.

It was hard to say goodbye to Zack who had to leave several days before the rest of us.
Even harder for him, as he had to go back to zero degree weather and 20 inches of snow!

We spent one day taking a 45 minute train tour around a plantation, which was interesting.

They stopped midway and gave us bread to feed the wild pigs,
who used to ruin their crops but now are part of the farm and eat the leftovers from their luaus 
(and bread from the tours!).

We heard wild pigs around the property we were staying on which made it a little scary to go outside at night.
 We didn't want to run into one of them!

It was hard to capture how small this lil' guy was without comparing him to the rooster he was next to.

So cute!

On our second to last morning, I went back for one more bike ride on my own .

Such a treat!

On our last morning, on the way to the airport,
we stopped to have one last meal at the yummy Kapaa food trucks that were just opening for the day.

One last (amazing) Shave Ice.

We're sure going to miss eating outside in December with little chicks stepping on our feet.

What an incredible trip!

Mele Kalikimaka!