Thursday, August 28, 2008

Bobcat Badge

Kobe got his first cub scout patch!! He's only been in scouts since he turned eight last December so if you do the math you can see that we are definitely NOT on the fast track with badges and stuff. I'd blame it on the den mother or something like that but I'm actually the den mom (that's what happens when you ask at church why your eight year old son hasn't had a den meeting yet after he's been eight for a few months--next time I'll know just to keep my mouth shut!)

Anyway, our whole pack is kind of new at this so we're learning as we go along. It's taken us quite a few months to kind of figure out what we are even supposed to be doing anyway but we had our first pack meeting tonight and the boys had fun. Kobe got his Bobcat Badge (along with all of the other boys) and I got a Bobcat pin. We also had another Cub Scout come that has earned all of the pins and badges that are possible to speak to the pack. The boys really enjoyed hearing about all his badges, etc. so now it looks like Kobe and I will be busy over the next few month before he turns nine getting caught up with badges...and obeying the law of the pack!

I'll just know that I'm doing good if I ever start reciting boy scout things in my sleep...I , Laura, promise to do my duty, to God and my country....

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The party's over!

I'm here to post that we survived yet another year of the Anderson Annual Luau. The party was a huge success--due largely to the fact that everyone pitches in to help...
Kobe & Tehani: I'm sure we're in total violation of numerous child labor laws (and probably some health codes as well) but Thing 1 and Thing 2 were formally inducted as official luau workers this year. These two cut all of the rhubarb (you can't very well have strawberry rhubarb pies without rhubarb) and all of the veggies for the tahitian raw fish. And, I am also very happy to say that they finished their job with all of their fingers in tact!
Cynthia: Cynthia's job is to boss everyone else around and tell us that we are behind schedule--even when were not. She also makes the invites for the party (which is a project in and of itself) and updates all of our shopping lists, guests lists, and schedules. She's also the head cleaner. On top of that, she's also in charge when we do our post-luau debriefing. Yes, there is seriously something wrong with a family that does a formal written post-party assessment. If there's a treatment program or an intervention that can be done to help us, please let me know.
Raymond: Our resident cop wears several hats on the luau committee:
  • Lime Juicer--I'm not sure why, but this has always been his job. The limes are used to marinate the raw fish my mom makes. Also, don't ask why my mom doesn't just use lime juice from a bottle. She won't.
  • AV Specialist--You can't have a luau without a full sound system and speakers around the whole back yard. DJ Ray always spins it up island style for luau goers to enjoy!
  • Security consultant--Basically this means that Raymond is in charge of calling my parent's home security company and turning it off during party prep. We assigned this to him after several years of having fire trucks show up at the house after we'd set off the fire alarm. For some reason, my dad doesn't like getting a charge from the security company for a fire call when there isn't really a fire. Go figure?
  • Tent puter-upper: We've decided that we can't really make our 70 year old father do this by himself (or set up the tables and chairs for 100+ people) so we usually all end up helping with this job. And if you're a tent puter-upper that means you are also a...
  • Tent taker-downer: The only bad thing on this job is that the tent, tables, and all chairs have to come down the night of the party after it is done. And this isn't a rule from the rental company or anything--it's a Ray & Jackie rule. Hours after the party is over, everything is back where it belongs!

Laura: My main job has always been to try and avoid as much luau work as possible. This year I was assigned as a baby wrangler--aka Charlotte holder. I also had the very important job as the head "We forgot something can you go to the store?" person. They're tough jobs but someone's got to do it.

Oh, and here's a lovely picture of me making the chow mien noodles for the luau--proof that I DID indeed do work for this year's party (even if Cynthia says anything to the contrary.)

Just think, only 301 days left until next years luau. And I'm sure we're already behind schedule!

Friday, August 22, 2008

You call this a vacation?!?

I've officially decided that I am going to need a vacation to recover from this supposed "vacation" when I get back home. Tomorrow is my parent's big luau--it's the 10th year that we've done this so you'd think I would have learned by now that there is no rest or relaxation to be found when it comes to luau preparations...

First off, you know you're in trouble when there is an actual written manual to follow on how to have a luau--or the ULTIMATE luau, as it's called in our book. My sister made this a few years ago as a present for my mom (We're weird, we know.) There is a section on everything from guests, shopping lists, recipes, and more--much, MUCH more. Basically, anytime there is a question on what needs to be done, we have to check the book. This year we actually started calling it the Luau Bible.

THE SCHEDULE--I know you can't see it in the first picture but we also have a section that includes a detailed hour-by-hour schedule. Here's a pic of our Saturday timeline. Just keep in mind that this hour-by-hour nonsense starts on Thursday! My sister, a.k.a. "The Schedule Nazi," spends the entire 72 hours leading up to the party telling us how we are soooo far behind schedule. Somehow we always manage to pull it off... Also, I guess we're lucky that we have an entry "reminding us" that at 4pm the PARTY STARTS! I'd hate for us to forget to start the luau if we didn't have it on "the schedule."

We may gripe and complain but getting ready for the luau is actually fun. Relaxing? Definitely not. But we must like something about...either that or we're just gluttons for punishment.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Reunited and it feels so good...

We'll, we officially have our kids back! Nofoa and I made the highly anticipated trip to Chicago to see our kids after a long, long, looooong, LONG summer. It was so good to see them when the pulled up at the airport. I did think that they would look a little more different after not seeing them for so long (Kobe has definaltey gotten taller--my mom decided he must go through his "growth spurt in August--and Tehani did loose a tooth and her hair is longer) but they are still the two same goofy looking kids that we love!!

My parent's luau is also this weekend so we do have a pretty tight schedule. However, we did manage to sneak in a trip to Todai, our favorite sushi restaraunt. We always make a point to stop here for lunch when we are in town. This is the first time we've taken the kids (or my mom) with us. The kids loved eating with chopsticks (kiddie ones--so they did actually end up with food in their mouth) and I just had fun stuffing myself and being "reunited" with my family.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Ahoy Matey!!

It's just a few more days until Nofoa and I head to Chicago to retrieve our kids (I'm hoping that by now they are tired of Grandma and Grandpa and ready to come home!) Needless to say, we've been trying to make the most of our last "kid-free" days while we can. I spent Friday night hanging out (ok, I guess technically I was working) with Cosmo," Jack Sparrow" and the rest of Provo at the Cougar Town Kickoff--and I have the picures to prove it!! I am also happy to say that we should actully be able to watch the BYU games on TV this year (well, at least most of them--I hope) as we are switching to Comcast on Monday. Go Cougars!!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Kobe, Tehani and the Tornado...

Kobe and Tehani always look forward to their trips to Chicago and who wouldn't--getting spoiled by Grandma and Grandpa, swimming lessons, spending time playing in my parent's crawlspace...the list goes on and on. Well now the kids can add "Being in a tornado" to their list o' fun. That's right, Kobe and Tehani experienced their very first (and hopefully last) tornado tonight.

A funnel cloud touched down in Elmhurst--about 4 miles from my parents house. By the time the tornado (or torpedo, as Tehani explains it) passed by everyone was already safe in the crawlspace. "It's the safest place in the house, Mom" the kids explained later on the phone. Little do they know that I've been through many a tornado drill growing up but luckily I've never had the pleasure of putting that practice to use. Cynthia told me later that Kobe did get a little scared when the power went off for the second time. However he managed to tell her through some tears that this would be a very cool thing to tell his science teacher about...if he didn't die first!

I'm glad that everyone made it through the "torpedo" safe and sound... and that my kids will now have a "cool" story to tell when they go back to school. This should definatley qualify for an A+ in science class!