July 17, 2011


Our HHE came today! For those of you who do not know what that is, it is House Hold Effects. Basically when you move, it is everything that could not go into the 400 lbs of 'air' shipment that you are allowed. It was like CHRISTMAS for Lady Hiva and I. To put things into perspective, here is the process: You decide you are moving, the movers come and pack up your stuff, they put it on the train/boat/plane to your next destination and theoretically two to three months later you are once again united with your stuff in a different country! Sounds great, right?

Well, when Hiva and I moved to Washington, DC from Hawaii we could not "drive" our stuff to DC. I thought it was pretty obvious we cannot drive considering it was 3000 miles of land and AN OCEAN away, but the person that told me we should drive could not quite see the problem. Maybe I have a myopic view of life! HAHA. So July 2010 we packed up our house and got on a plane with only what fit into our 4 suitcases. for the last 12 months we have been living in temporary housing, using temporary furniture and kitchen supplies. I cannot even tell you how many times we would use the phrases, "I cannot wait until we have our______ again." or "...where is _____? Oh, it is in a box somewhere..."

Well Monday we got it all back! It had made the journey safely across the Pacific ocean--again. Too bad we do not get mileage points for our furniture too, we would have SO many tickets by now! I came home from work early to help Hiva and I walked into a collage of stacked boxes and mountains of paper stuffing. Daunting.

We unpacked, 'just like everyone else unpacks, one box at a time.' HAHA. It is amazing how you forget what you have after a year of not having it. Lady and I would exclaim in excitement when we had opened a "treasure box" and found the long lost cookie sheet or favorite utensil. I found it interesting to see what things Hiva was most happy about getting contrasting to what I was glad to once again have. She was thankful to have all of our own dishes, pans, and cookware. I was excited to have all our books and photos again.

Most of all each box had memories in them. Often one of us would be unpacking a box and sigh or laugh as we found an article that represented a memory. Photos of a family holiday, a book we had read together, a card sent to us in a time of need, gifts given to us throughout our marriage and how those things are links to the people that gave them. We laughed when we saw the tile Edwin and Becky gave to us and sat in living room house for three months before we realized it said, "Familes are Forever." Then we left it up for the next year because Edwin and Becky mean so much to us we figured they are part of our "famile" too. Or the windchime from Ckaz and Jamie that hung in our house from the time they came for a holiday to the Philippines--how ironic that it has now returned to its mother country. The meaningful inspired quotes given to us by Dacie, Beau-D, Mandy, and Tracy, reminded us of the life situations we were experiencing when they were given to us and why we needed the inspiration then. The house fans that could not keep Kell quite cool enough in our small home in Hawaii. The Movies Royce and Joni gave to us over the years. The bed set and towels Hiva's Mum gave to us for our wedding. Or the bowls Justin and Brandon made trifle in for our parties on birthdays in the summer.

I think the hardest box for me was the box with Vaitafe's stuff in it. I opened the box and lifted up the blanket on the top that was given to us by Shauna and Joseph when Vaitafe was born. Sadly, we did not get that package until the day after he died and I remember the tears that came that day. Tears of sadness mixed with tears of thankfulness for people who understand and love us. A wave of emotion swept over me as I once again open a box to find that blanket and I had to put the blanket down and come back later when I was more composed. It was hard to open the dresser drawers that hold the new baby clothes Leni bought for us. They are still  folded and ready for a baby to wear, yet still unused. Or the "My FIRST" memory book and foot print frame that Madre and Kell bought that are still unopened with no footprints inside.

Opening all of the boxes was a wonderful experience. Our house is beginning to feel more like our own home. In a few days we will hopefully have all of the photos up on the walls and all of you will be able to see them. Hiva has already decided to paint the dining room blue--you can see a glimpse in the background--we will put more photos up when it is all finished so you all can see.

It is great to feel more settled in.

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