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Monthly Archives: July 2012

Summer is in full swing for the boyz.  After a week “recovering” from the school year and our HI trip (I still have a TON of pictures to post) we are back in the swing of things.  Our first highlight of the week was our boys first swimming lessons.  The boys LOVE the pool so we have a pass for a local pool and we spend most of the time there on a big slide or running around the shallow end.  However, the boys started a two week swim course and are loving it – glad to see!

Now, the BIG EVENT of  the week was the Polynesian Culutral Center’s performance at a nearby convention center.  We had seen the “HA: The Breath of Life” Performance last year in Hawaii and since my wife and I both worked at the Center and actually met there, we were very excited to see the show.

Polynesian Cultural Center's HA Breath of Life in Utah

Da Boyz dancing the hula. My wife’s favorite dance. 🙂

 

There was also an appearance by Kap Te’o Tafiti, or “Kap” who was one of the main perfomers in the Samoan Show (coconut husking and tree climbing) at the PCC and regularly performed the fire knife dance finale in the evening show.

Kap Te'o Tafiti @ The Polynesian Cultural Center

Kap doing the Samoan Show skit

Just like last year, the boys LOVED the show.  I didn’t realize that the PCC’s Performing Team would be doing the entire “HA” show (the main evening show) but they did and it was FANTASTIC.  Just like last year, the boys got so excited to see the fire knife dancing and after the show, we were (again) one of the last families to leave since the kids wanted pictures with the performers.

Polynesian Cultural Center's HA Breath of Life in Utah

Da Kids with one of the dancers

Twin A was so funny though.  We took a picture with a few of the male dancers and were ready to leave when he asked, “what about pictures with the girls?”  So, we got in line for one of the dancers but he quickly pulled us aside and said, “No, she’s not my favorite.”  So, that started a hunt for his ‘favorite’ dancer.  Hilarious.

Polynesian Cultural Center's HA Breath of Life in Utah

Twin A’s “Favorite” Dancer. He was so shy walking up to her

The boys are getting a lot better at communicating with people, developing eye contact, and holding conversations. . . especially about “Angry Birds” or now, the favorite is “Super Mario Galaxy.”  The last picture we took was with the lead in the show who plays “Mana.”  Mana and one of the other dancers picked the boys up and the boys were SO EXCITED.  It was great to see – I wish this picture turned out better because their expression was priceless. The performers for the show were so friendly and outgoing, it really made an impression on the kiddos and it was SO REFRESHING to see versus other places we’ve visited where, you can tell, the person would rather be doing something else.

Polynesian Cultural Center's HA Breath of Life in Utah

“How kool is this?”

The boys and I accompanied my daughter to a “Keiki Hula” (kid’s hula) class in a nearby town.  The class is hosted by Kaipo, a friend from Maui who also worked with my wife dancing hula at the Polynesian Cultural Center.  I’m grateful that the kids have taken a liking to the dances and arts that are part of their culture and heritage.

A Keiki Hula Class in Lehi, UT

Keiki Hula Class

Tip of the Week: I’ve missed doing the ‘tip of the week ‘ for the past few weeks with school out.  I’ve got an idea we are trying this week so I will work on it and report back!  Have a great week and ALOHA~

We are actually back from our trip but it was a fantastic two weeks.  I took our computer thinking that I’d get all this work done when the kids were sleeping but I should know better by now.  So within 24 hours of school ending, we were on the plane!  The boys were so excited but the problem was that our flight was at 3pm and they were ready to go at 8am.  Ugh

Twins going to Hawaii

SO EXCITED!

We brought all our necessary electronical equipment to ensure that we wouldn’t go crazy on the airplane.  However, my wife also prepared a bunch of worksheets and coloring books so the kiddos wouldn’t be too amped up on electronics after 6 hours on the plane and a 2 hour layover in LA.

Airplane - it's a wunderful life

Getting some work done

We usually don’t go home every year (we were back last year) but this year was our first family reunion so we UNFORTUNATELY HAD to go back.  Hah hah – like you’d have to twist my arm to get me back to Hawaii. On both sides of my family, as I was growing up, most of my relatives were on Maui.  However, most of the kids in my generation have left and it’s been rare for us to see each other.

It's a Wunderful Life, Hamai, Family Reunion, Maui

Hamai Family Reunion 2012

Our family has a store on Maui that we all grew up hanging out at, working at during the summer, and now a few of us are returning to run.  Hawaii has a strong sense of community and family, but I really feel that because of this store, we grew up in a very tight family unit.  Also, my mom is one of six children, five of which have kids.  Now from those five lines, three of them now have children who make up the fifth generation of Japanese Americans in our family.  All three of those lines have at least one set of twins.  We had fun teasing the kids in the other two lines about their chances to have twins – especially since one of those is an only child.  🙂

Surfing @ Launiupoko / It's a Wunderful Life

Taking Twin A out on the surfboard

This was a good trip for the kids.  I think it was especially good for them since the last time my parents saw them was prior to the school year starting.  My parents got to see how much the boys have progressed.  I think that since we are with them everyday, we sometimes miss how far they have really come.  Anyway, more Hawaii coming up!  🙂

It’s been a busy few weeks.  The day after our boys graduated from school, we headed to HI for a family reunion.  We got back yesterday and I guess today was our first ‘normal’ day of summer vacation!

It's a Wunderful Life - Autism School Graduation

Twin A with his amazing teacher

Graduation was a bitter sweet day for us.  On the one hand, it will be great to have the kids home for the summer,  They have also made TREMENDOUS gains and strides thanks to their school and fantastic facility. I can’t tell you how grateful my wife and I are that we were able to attend this school and for the amazing people who did so much for our boys.

Graduation - It's a Wunderful Life

Twin B and his great teacher

On the other hand, it was a day of goodbye since we will be going to a new school in Fall.  These schools are also different from other schools since these kids are from all over the valley and while some will continue at the current school, others (like our twins) will be going a different direction.

Twin A chatting with one of his friends

Graduation - It's a Wunderful Life

Fiesta! Twin B and a classmate

I am grateful that our twins made friends. . . . that they came home talking about teachers, friends, lessons, games . . . . that they have grown so much over the past year.  I know we still have a long road ahead of us but to those individuals that were a part of our twins’ lives this year – thank you for all you’ve done!It's a Wunderful Life - Autism School Graduation

I thought they final project that the class had on their board was fitting for the day (picture above).  Thank you!