Thursday, August 25, 2005

Hawaii, Part III

I'm afraid these posts on Hawaii will never end.

To continue, with The Good:

Last year, my in-laws took us to Hawaii (yes, I know, we are spoiled, spoiled people) when Isaac was 19 months old and Vivian was 3 months old. We had a fabulous time, but Isaac was a nightmare the whole trip. It was 10 days of the longest never-ending temper tantrum ever witnessed on this planet. So we were a little apprehensive about his behavior this year, especially after the hellish plane ride.

Fortunately for everyone, he was actually quite charming for most of the trip. He loved Hawaii, loved the beach, the ocean, his cousins, swimming, eating at "restahlants", riding in the van--all of it. He really did have a grand time, and it was much fun to see.

Last summer Isaac had swimming lessons and this year he has been in my mother-in-law's pool fairly often. But he definitely didn't know how to swim. He didn't like getting his head wet or going under and was just starting to learn how to blow bubbles. It goes without saying that we spent a lot of time at the beach while we were in Hawaii, and the ocean there is a very comfortable temperature, unlike the Pacific here in LA, which I swear to you, hovers around 65 degrees year 'round. (How anyone swims in that water without a wetsuit baffles me, but then again Lance claims I'm soft, so who am I to say?) Anyway, in addition to the easily accessible ocean, both homes we stayed at--in Maui and the Big Island--had swimming pools. So we spent a lot of time in the water. Isaac probably spent a good 70% of his time when he wasn't sleeping in the water.

And he basically swims now. He was boogie boarding by himself in the ocean by the time we left. Several times he got tumbled by a wave and just got up giggling and kept going. I am completely amazed, as I for one am a terrible swimmer and don't really enjoy the ocean except to sit next to and read. The real test will be when we go down to the Santa Monica Beach and he tries to swim in that water. It's definitely rougher, deeper, and MUCH COLDER. Time will tell . ..

Isaac's language skills have been improving lately, too, which makes for some interesting conversations. One day at the beach, he had been pestering some girls and their beach ball for about an hour when I finally dragged him away. As we sat on our chairs drying off, he said "Can I play with the ball, Mom? Where's the ball? Did you see the blue ball? Can I play with Kristen?" And I would answer, "Not right now, okay?" After about 5 minutes of this I said, "Let's not talk about the ball anymore, okay, Isaac. Let's just think about something else." And he said: " Mommy, why are you being a little pest?" I kid you not. One night Kitchel and Sawyer decided to skinny dip in the pool, which involved, again, much squealing and giggling, especially when Lance came outside. Isaac went in the pool too, in his diaper. Later he said, "Sawyer was wearing her coochie in the pool, right, Mom?" And one day at the beach a little boy was swimming naked--to which Isaac asserted, "I saw that little boy's crack, Mom. The little boy was swimming with his crack."

He also somehow picked up the expression "I'm okay!" while we were there, as in "Do you want some milk, Isaac?" "No, I'm okay!" This quickly morphed into his answer to every request we gave that he didn't want to honor: Me:"Time for night-night! Let's go get in our pjs!" Isaac: "I'm okay!" Lance: "Have some more chicken." Isaac: "I'm okay!" Even this morning when I said "Let's go to school!", he answered "I'm okay, Mommy. I don't want to go to 'cool."

Somehow on this vacation, he also (finally!) learned to say thank you. We have been working on pleases and thank yous all along, but he only remembered about 50% of the time. Now, thank you is his favorite word, it seems. Very cute. I hand him his shirt: "Thank you, Mommy." I put his plate down in front of him: "Thank you." And so on.

Sadly, this politeness did not temper his demands, so often you'd hear, "Get in the pool, Mommy!" MOMMY! GET IN THE POOL!" "I'm okay! I don't need lunch! NOOO! NO LUNCH! GET IN POOL!! And then 7 minutes later as he's sitting at the table, "Thanks for my juice box, Mom."

Vivian also had her share of good moments on the trip. She finally got one large front tooth, so now she has a total of 3, though none of them are all the way out yet. That one front tooth really changes her face though (Sob.) She is so much sturdier now than she was before we left. And get this: she actually stood on her own a few times, for about 10 seconds each! So perhaps she will be walking before she's two. She was pretty angelic the whole vacation, despite the fact that we moved around so much. Really both my kids were surprisingly adaptable the whole vacation, knock on wood. She remains an exceptionally calm, laid-back child, happy to go to whoever wants to hold her, content to play with a shell necklace for 15 minutes at a time while the rest of us drank our Mai Tais, and Kitchel and Sawyer turned cartwheels on the lawn while Isaac ran between them giggling hysterically.

She also loves the water, and would crawl straight into the ocean without a care. She loves playing in the sand, especially finding old cigarette butts to suck on (oops!). She, with her beautiful olive skin (lucky bitch!) got incredibly tan despite the 50 sunblock I lathered her in (her brother and mother remained pale and see-through, as always), and her hair turned much blonder. She does have my hair in one sense--when it was humid, she get little curls in the back; and when it wasn't, straight as a poker.

Oh, and she's learned to say "Cheese!" Not for the food (she's allergic, dammit), but when one is taking a picture. By the end of the vacation she learned to say cheese with the best of them. Although my sister was trying to insist we NOT say cheese, since for some reason the face Sawyer makes when she says that word is not the prettiest.

That's still one of her only words--she also says ba-bie, for bottle and "birdie". She says Mama and Dada and Mommy and Daddy and about half the time she means what they say. Just today I think she's finally master "Uh", for up. So we're getting there, but slowly.

See the tooth?


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