Graduation season is upon us. I am a hot mess. If this is what I’m like during eighth grade graduation season, what on earth will I be like in four short years when Arleigh graduates from high school and Hanan is right behind her? Heaven help us all. I’m not even kidding. Ray looked at me last night and said, “You have been way too emotional.” Really, what was your first clue? Maybe the crying over Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader? Again. Not even kidding. I wish I was. 

Where was I? Oh yes… graduation season. Grad season in Hawaii is not like grad season on the mainland. There is no real way to describe it. You celebrate for weeks. It isn’t a graduation from Intermediate school. It’s called the Rites of Passage. One of the mile markers is your 8th grade banquet. It starts in your 7th grade health and PE class where they teach you how to dance with a member of the opposite sex and how to not be an idiot. I truly appreciate the time and effort it must take to teach a bunch of hormonal middle schoolers to behave with that kind of decorum. Then as your 8th grade comes to an end, everyone dresses up and goes to a ballroom in Waikiki for a sit-down lunch with real napkins and real glasses and more than one fork. After lunch, they go to a club and get a few hours to dance and generally act a fool. It is a special day. It’s like someone mixed a ball and school dance with a bunch of middle schoolers, shook it all up and poured it into a school day. It makes for one excited eighth grader. 

The down side is we’ve basically had to do a mini prom preparation at 6 a.m. I am not a morning person. I’m especially not a morning person when I have to help my baby who is supposed to look like this…


Look like this…


I need to thank Auntie Chan and Madi for waking up early and coming down to help. Those curls don’t curl themselves and I rarely if ever wear makeup so it was so nice to have second and third opinions. Seriously. They came down so early and I didn’t even have coffee to offer. One more ohana to miss as we move. Luckily they’ll only be hours away instead of thousands of miles. 

Arleigh looked fabulous and she had a good time. She has the best group of friends. I love them! I love all of them! They are sweet and funny and just good kids. I want to put them in our suitcase and take them with us. I know Arleigh can text them and Instagram with them and she’ll stay in touch. I will miss them and their fun stories and moving is just hard on all of us. 

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Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset

I’m prayerfully hoping that she finds another good group of kids in Virginia. If she doesn’t… well, Ray may have to retire and we’re going to live in a two bedroom shack on this little island. 

This is the friend I’ll miss the most. She’s such a regular fixture in our house, we think of her as our own. She is the polar opposite of my loud tribe. She is quiet and always watching but we do occasionally hear the fit of giggles that come out especially when she’s slightly embarrassed. She might be slightly embarrassed quite often by a bunch of obnoxious Stiffs but that’s another post. We all love our Kiki!

IMG_8081Don’t tell her Mom but we may just have to kidnap her for a while. 

These next few weeks are going to be hard on all of us, especially this mama’s heart. Pride night is tomorrow and Rites of Passage is next week. I’m trying to buckle up for this long ride.