Saturday, July 30, 2011

Summer Week 9

Erica had an all day art class on horses, she was so excited,
Gilbert has taken up residence in the bottom of our old stroller,
Friday we headed to the beach, right after we got there it started pouring, while everyone else was packing up and making a mad dash for their car, the kids were having a blast,
I ran under a tree and saw this beautiful shot, usually there is a reef on the horizon,

it eventually cleared and the beautiful blue color returned to the water,
this is such a great beach, where else can you go that has a view of Diamond Head,
and war ships so close you can about touch them,
after the beach we went to the Hickam Wetland Trail and learned all about wetlands, the only bird we saw was the big one in the sky, we need to come back in the evening,
this is a fuzzy picture but there were these bushes with huge thorns on them which made for a difficult hike in flip flops,

next we stopped at Fort Kamehameha. In 1907 as Pearl harbor was being dredged, the Army built shore defenses at Queen Emma Point to protect the ships. Before it was a military base and renamed Fort Kamehameha the land belonged to the Queen Emma.
In 1913 the families arrived, Fort Kam was just tents and batteries, not until 1916 were permanent quarters constructed. The houses, which were once favored places to live as they are backed by a beautiful cove, have been unoccupied since 2008. These houses had to be sturdy to survive, as Colonel Windslow explained, "One of the greatest difficulties with which the fortification engineer has to deal in is the terrifically destructive effects of the discharge of the high-power guns." The houses are listed as Historic Homes and cannot be torn down and replaced.
The first battery was built in 1907, there are 9 total. The largest, Battery Closson, named after Civil War General Henry Whitney Closson sits right behind Officers Row. The attack of the Japanese on December 7, 1941 showed the inadequacy of coastal artillery and shortly after the guns were removed and scrapped.
the other original structures are the church, flagpole, and bandstand. In 1991 the army accepted the exchange of Wheeler AFB for Fort Kam.
The historic houses on Hickam were built in the 1930's. Captain Howard B. Nurse, the officer in charge of the construction, designed a plan for a "Garden City" with generous amounts of open spaces and major and minor axes connected by tree lined boulevards. Interesting trivia, the ceilings in the homes are made of canec-a fiberboard made from sugar cane bagasse (a fiber pulp after the sugar has been removed).
The water tower, built in 1938 of a Moorish design and is 171' tall. There are 8 2,000 lb eagles at the points of the octagon. Every December since 1969, 8000 light are strung from the top to the base making it the tallest Christmas tree on island.

After our tour of Hickam we went over to visit Erik. Normally when we see Erik the divers are just sitting around waiting. They do a lot of waiting. Today we got to see a really cool job. First the kids hung out and looked at all the cool fish eating algae on the side of the sub. Then the divers suited up and jumped in, next the crane raised (something secret Erik said), lowered it into the water and the divers attached it to the sub. This secret something is really cool. I went on Wikipedia and this is what I can tell you. Subs have countermeasures designed to deceive radar, sonar, enemy missiles...
This tower is the 100' Submarine Escape Training Tank used from 1932-1983. It's a tank full of water, sailors entered an airlock beneath the chamber, a flood valve would fill with water until the pressure equaled the pressure at the bottom of the chamber. The sailor would exit the airlock and go to the surface with a buoyant air pressured hood. In 1983 the tank was drained and the top was converted into a conference room by RADM Jack Darby and called the House that Jack Built.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Summer Week 8

This week the kids had tennis camp, they go every year and love it,

Erica was stung by a wasp at horse riding lessons, she was so brave and finished her whole lesson but her arm swelled and was hot and tight, poor thing.

Wednesday we had chapel, school started back up-not for us yet but we still get to go to chapel.
after tennis the kids took a "dip" in the pool as Owen put it,

I am so impressed with Evan, he's really improved.

Trip to Bed Bath and Beyond

I received a $5 off of a $15 purchase coupon in the mail-that's 33.3%! plus included was an add for quick dry towels, 1/2 off for $7.99 each! Perfect I thought, there's my $15, towels we are falling apart, and quick dry in humid Hawaii-sounds great. I'm not much of a shopper, especially when it means I have to go to a store but the kids were at camp so I could get there right when the store opened. Oh my gosh, this store is full of stuff I never knew I needed. There is so much to look at and it definitely wins the prize for most number of patented products under 1 roof. I called Erik and asked if I could get a $40 Kitchen Aid hand mixer. He said, "the one we have is working just fine." I said, "it's marked down from $90." He said, "well, maybe the engine is about to go on ours and how old is it?" Did you know you can go broke saving money? I had to tell him about all the amazing things in this store. He laughed and said, "isn't shopping great!
So I am walking around the store with an arm load of stuff and every employee in there wants to give me a cart. I said, "no no, I don't want to get any more than I can carry." Mind you-I am 6' foot so I have long arms, plus I had already fallen for the $5 off coupon, I wasn't about to fall for any more of their tricks.
We don't have cable or direct tv so up until Erik called Netflix our program viewing was pretty limited. In fact the kids' favorite thing to watch was "as seen on tv" infomercial-hence my agreeing to Netflix. My kids knew all of them and would constantly tell me about what products I needed for my face, scalp, feet, and posture. Besides wanting to fix all my flaws the kids really want to get me anything that made food and cleaned the house-Owen promised it would really help. Of course Evan was taken by the great deal on a Japanese knife that could cut through steel and if I called right now he would get a second one for free...just what Evan in each hand...
I gotta tell you though-there are some really cool "as seen on tv" products and their ads play all over the store.

There is a lot of fun stuff, I can see the benefits of the kids having to churn their own ice cream, and Erik is always complaining about heating up the whole oven just to cook something small, and who couldn't possibly resist making one's own cotton candy?!
Now I know why Evan thinks the Ninja is the greatest thing on earth. I watched the whole ad...all half hour of it...who knew shopping was entertaining!?
There are bargains and variety galore-I lost count the number of ways one can make cup cakes. A there's the giant donut pan that had Evan's name written all over it. I was so happy the kids were at camp or else we each would have been walking around with an arm load...but then again had they not been at camp I would have never made it to Bed Bath and Beyond before the coupon expired to begin with!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Weekend at Bellows

Erica and her friend played at the beach,

the boys played paintball,

these two refs are so cool, Bellows is so kid friendly, they really look out for the "young guns"

Erica walked around picking up the dirty paintballs from the ground to use in the sling shot at home,

Erica and her friend then played mini golf,

most gorgeous beach...