Saturday, September 11, 2010

Aloha E Komo Mai

1st, let's take a moment and honor those we lost on that fateful day not so long ago.  All life is cherished and when lost it is truly a sad day.  Always honor those gone but never forgotten.  Thank you. 

Hello and Welcome was the theme of the Hui O Wahine all ranks spouses club luncheon this month.  Hawai'i has two spouses clubs.  The south side, Ft. Shafter is the Hui O Wahine.  The North side, Schofield Barracks is the Hui O'Na Wahine.  Being a member of both, and a board member of the Hui O'Na Wahine; I love to promote both organizations.  Each club holds monthly luncheons which also doubles as the general membership meetings.  Hui Spirit ( Hui O Wahine) has their luncheons the 1st Thursdays of the month and the Hui O'Na Wahine is on the 2nd Thursday.  So to share a little of my and our fun with you, I'll give you an inside view of what we experience during our luncheons.  Also as you can see I'll include the website for the group I'm featuring at that time so you can check them out yourselves.

Smiling ladies, vendors buzzing as they prepared their wares, soft music playing in the background and the smell of something good in the air.  This was the Hui spirit in full force. 

The special guest speaker, Ms. Hawaii 2010: Jaylee Kate Fuselier.  After a warm welcoming by 1st V.P., Elizabeth Terry, Jaylee begin telling her story of how she grew up on the beautiful North Shore of Hawai'i.  She told us of her drive over and the smell of the fresh Hawaiian air.  She continued her story of how welcomed she felt upon arrival and the many thanks she had received for coming to speak at the luncheon. 

What happened next, no one in that room could have ever predicted and I promise you there wasn't a dry eye left.  Jaylee went on to say how grateful she was for all the thanks received, but she was the one who was truly thankful: for all of us in the room and the work we continued to do everyday.  Volunteering!  How gracious this beautiful young talented woman was.  Every one loves the occasional pat on the back, and although un-necessary; it was nice to hear.

She told us of her sister and her disability.  That her disability was actually her ability and gifts to thrive in life.  For everyone who had told her and her family that she would never do things a "normal kid or person" would do; she did them and more.  How her sister took her disability and turned them into contributions of service.  What an inspiration again this woman and her family were to a room full of military wives.  Myself, amongst others were happy she had decided to share her stories with us, and I will treasure them for life. 

Icing on the cake,  Jaylee performed a vocal performance of "Feeling Good".  Having other committements as Miss. Hawaii, a flight to catch, Jaylee enjoyed a quick bite with us; waved us goodbye and off she went.  In all my years living in Texas, not once have I met a "Miss. Texas".  Growing up in New Orleans, again, not once have I met "Miss. Louisiana.  Here in Hawaii, I have met not one but two Miss. Hawai'i's.    Raeceen Anuenue Woolford, Miss Hawai'i 2009 and now Jaylee Kate Fuselier, Miss Hawai'i 2010.  Everybody at home:  eat your hearts out!

Auntie Annelle!

Let me tell you about Ms. Annelle.  First to give her a proper introduction she is the Native Hawaiian Liaison to the Army Garrison Commander.   Col. Matthew Margotta,  Garrison Hawaii commander hired a liaison for Hawaiian issues, formed a council of Hawaiians to advise him, and brought Army and Hawaiian leaders together to sign a covenant in which both sides vowed to respect and understand one another.  Ms. Annelle Amaral is the liaison on that council.  Col. Douglas Mulbury took over from Margotta in a change of command ceremony.  You can follow the entire council on Army Times.  (Excerpts from the Army Times)

Ok proper respect was paid (very important)  I'm telling you this is one of the most fascinating women I've ever known.  What I wanted to tell you was the prayer she opened the luncheon with.  OMG, I've heard a lot of Hawaiian prayers since we've been stationed here, and I've tried to learn them all.  The Hawaiian's are very ceremonial and with good reason.  That's another story for another day.  Stay tuned for many of those.  Getting off track as I often do.  Where was I?  Oh yes, the prayer. 

The name of it is No'o nani.  The Doxology.  Let me see real quick if I can find it.  Got it

Ho`o nani ka Makua mau

Ke Keiki me ka Uhane no,
Ke Akua mau
Ho`o mai ka`i, pu,
Ko ke ia ao, ko ke la ao

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow. Praise Him all creatures here below.

Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts.
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

Hawaiian Chants is the name of the website, I'll put the link below.

To hear someone sing or chant it, words cannot describe.  The Hawaiian language is beautiful to the ear in my opinion to begin with.  To hear in musically, your forever touched.  Not only that, Auntie teaches the HULA at both Schofield and Ft. Shafter.  Auntie, pass me some of your energy please!

It was a great luncheon.  Great company, great pupu's (appetizer's- almost got ya didn't I), lots of raffle prizes and just a good time had by all.  If anyone ever has the opportunity to visit Hawai'i, go off the beaten path of the tourist strip.  Meet some people, see the island, and ask someone to "talk story".  You'll be glad you did. 

Take a minute to volunteer.  It's a little of your time, but a lifetime of help to someone else.  You never know when you will influence someone, or perhaps be influenced yourself. 

Enjoy my friends and until next time

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Spouse or Special Ops

Army wives prayer

Dear Lord,

Give me the greatness of heart to see the difference between duty and his love for me. Give me understanding that I may know, when duty calls him he must go. Give me a task to do each day, to fill the time when he's away. And Lord, when he's in a foreign land, keep him safe in your loving hand. And Lord, when duty is in the field, please protect him and be his shield. And Lord, when deployment is so long, please stay with me and keep me strong. Amen.
Ok, so now where is the prayer that gives you patience and strength to deal with the kids, carpool, school, pets, shopping, sleeping alone and nonstop emergencies?  Could someone point me in that general direction.  We are not simply Army wives.  We are special ops Army wives! 
I can plan an luncheon while making my son's lunch.  Throw a load of laundry into the washer while making return phone calls to my FRG.  I can sort and count Boxtops at the same time I'm stirring dinner on the stove.  I can pick up my husbands Class A's, run to the px and jump into the commissary in less than 2 X 2 flat. 
I remember once being wakened about 3am, by someone pounding on my window.  We were stationed at Ft. Bragg at the time and my husband had just deployed to Iraq.  Not knowing what to expect, I grabbed the pistol he had left me and up I jerked the window shade.  Imagine my surprise when I seen it was my girlfriends from the neighborhood out on a late night expedition and theirs when they saw the pistol.  I was fully prepared to defend the homefront in my husband's absence.  We laugh about it now, but at the time I was thinking "what the hell is going on". 
What color star should a spouse get for years of living like this?
You cannot be a military wife without knowing how to compartmentalize your emotions. Sometimes those feelings, or those tears, sneak up on you, but you learn how to reign them in. The faster you learn how to do it, the better off you are. But other times, when you find you can't feel anything at all, you wonder: where does compartmentalization end and disassociation begin?
All in all, I absolutely love being a military wife.  With each move, our family meets new lifelong friends.  We've travel to some of the most beautiful places.  I'll take that anyday over a delayed household goods delivery, extended stay at the hotel and all that goes with a PCS move. 
After all you're surrounded by people just like you, other army-wives who no doubt share experiences and interests

You get free health and dental for rest of your life and for any of your dependants too!

You get to hear all their funny stories (believe me they are funny, makes you wish YOU enlisted too!)  NOT