Beauty, Cultures, Grandchildren, Hawaii, health, home, Parenting, Religion, travel

The Twelfth Tribe of Israel

Since it is Sunday, I thought I would put a religious spin on the story of our 12th grandchild, Lily Ruth. You see, my husbands name is Israel – only in his language it is spelled ‘Isileli. And, to make it more exact, his proper name is ‘Isileli Tupou (so, said the Queen – no for real!). I can get into that later, but this is about Lily.

When we discovered that my third son and his wife were expecting their fourth child, we were elated. I was invited together with the parents and their three children to the doctors office for the sonogram. What an exciting time for all of us as we anticipated whether the baby would be a girl or boy. There could not be a happier bunch in the whole wide world!

After a short time in the waiting room we were escorted into the exam room. The children and I were all seated together in front of our very own monitor screen! The nurse began the sonogram and gave commentary on what she was seeing. Suddenly there was a hush in the room. I could see that the nurse was still proceeding with the exam but she was not saying anything. Soon, we were told to return to the waiting room.

I won’t go into the details, but this is the moment we found out that our new baby GIRL would be born with spina bifida. It was a big life decision that the parents made to bring Lily into the world knowing she would need continual daily care and possibly be in a wheelchair most of her life. The doctor tried very hard to convince them to terminate the pregnancy but since both parents high moral standards and strong religious beliefs, they took upon themselves the responsibility to love and care for this precious child.

We were so happy that we were able to welcome Lily into our family. She has taught us all so very much and brought much happiness to our lives. I feel honored to have my name as part of hers. I can on imagine how joyous she will be to be able to walk up to greet Jesus one day.

Now we have six granddaughters and six grandsons. How perfect! I feel very blessed to have each and every one of my grandchildren. They are each cherished for their own individual talents and personalities. I’m so glad that they love getting together and we look forward to a gathering soon.

Stay tuned as I shared some of our most memorable adventures together.

Lily doing a hula (sorry for my singing – blah)
Hula outfit for baby
Artwork, Beauty, Cultures, Grandchildren, Hawaii, health, home, Parenting, photography, travel

Two Little Brothers

Kids make the best pinterest ads

Jakeyboy (that’s what we called him to distinguish him from his Daddy) would be getting a new little brother. He was only two years old and didn’t really know what was going on. His parents were a bit worried that he might be jealous of the new baby, so right before the new baby was born they gave Jakeyboy a special present. They have been good friends besides brothers ever since.

Zion Viliami

I remember feeling about the same way because our first two children were fifteen months apart. Sibling rivalry is a concern for many parents. Now cousin Israel had a little sister and a brother and cousin Anna had gained a little sister. Our grandchildren were growing in number and we were quite busy getting to know them. We learned so much from each one and enjoyed spoiling them a little. We knew we were blessed to have them in our family and wanted to do the best for them.

Baby Zion Menehune

As for my artistic side, I saw an opportunity to use my grandchildren in photo shoots. This one of Zion was taken when he was on a few months old on the North Shore of Hawaii. It reminded me of the stories of Hawaiian menehune who appeared at night marching across rainforests. I couldn’t help myself sharing this fun picture!

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Beauty, Cultures, Grandchildren, Hawaii, health, Parenting, travel

Seven is a Lucky Number!

In one year (2003), we were blessed with three beautiful grandchildren! They grew up together and became good buddies. The following year we received our seventh grandchild and fourth granddaughter. Little Eryn was born in Hawaii and unlike her older sister, she was very mellow and low maintenance. At least that is what we thought…

Eryn Moana (her middle name means “ocean” in Hawaiian)

I remember when she was only a month old we went with her and her parents to Turtle Bay to watch the fireworks for the 4th of July. She slept through them all and never fussed at all. We were wondering why she wasn’t crying at all. When we felt her little head, she had a raging fever! Oh, no! She was taken to the emergency room at the nearest hospital. It was not very well known for excellent service, and our new baby was rushed to Kapiolani Hospital in Honolulu. That was pretty nerve shattering!

Eryn stayed in the hospital for quite some time. She had a bad urinary tract infection which would be the start of many more to come. We each have our trials and this appeared to be one of hers and her parents. We all took turns taking the long windy road from the North Shore of Oahu to visit or stay with Eryn during her time in the hospital. Thank goodness for modern medicine!

Eryn at the beach in Hawaii, Digital Art by Ruth Kongaika
Have a thermometer on hand for baby!
Beauty, Grandchildren, Hawaii, health, home, Parenting, travel

Polynesian Maiden

Our only daughter came to live with us in Hawaii while her husband finished school. It seemed that sea level agreed with her when she announced she was pregnant with our sixth grandchild!

I had hoped for an easy birth for my daughter knowing that all of mine had been quite difficult. Her husband was a big Polynesian man and so I expected the baby would be pretty big. She had worked right up until her delivery as a nurse at a local hospital. Because her doctor was going on vacation, she was induced. This probably was not the best alternative.

I was with my daughter the whole time while she suffered with labor. Even though she was given Pitocin to help her labor move along, she was not progressing. After much labor without a baby, (just like I had experienced) the doctor suggested the other “C” word (Caesarean section). We were both a bit worried!

By then her doctor had left on holiday and another doctor took over to do the operation. Rachel Ileina made her appearance while I observed her through a small window into the operating room. It was not at all how we had expected it to go, but we were so grateful that the baby was healthy! She was a real beauty!

Baby was ready to go home, but mother was not doing as well. They both had to stay in the hospital for about a week to get Mommy’s vitals stable.

We were so grateful for our new Polynesian maiden and have loved watching her grow into a beautiful young lady.

Hula Girl, Digital Art by Ruth Kongaika

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Artwork, Beauty, Cultures, food, Grandchildren, Hawaii, health, home, Parenting

The King Has Arrived

Both sides of our family come from nobility. We are royal! This finally came to be manifest in our fifth grandchild. His name was James Ali’i (means “King” in Hawaiian). His parents were living in the mainland USA when he was born. He was a beautiful baby and has certainly lived up to his name. He is very handsome and bright despite his short stature.

The King, James Ali’i

When he was a newborn, he would not drink his milk very well. His father would rock him and try every way to get him to take his bottle, but without success. He became desperate and started feeding him ice cream. Now, if you ask him if he wants to eat ice cream, he will always say “no”!

James KeAli'i with his father
James KeAli’i with his father

Here is a watercolor I did after Ali’i joined the family. I try to create something for each of my grandchildren while they are young.

Watercolor by Ruth Kongaika . Showing Israel, Princess and Ali’i.
Baby carrier
Cultures, Grandchildren, Hawaii, home, Parenting

My Third Grandchild and Second Granddaughter

Once I had one of each kind (boy and girl), I was not very particular about my third grandchild. I was very excited just the same! My daughter-in-law invited me to the birth. I wanted to be there since it was my son’s first child. She did great and we soon welcome little Anna Luiza.

Pretty Anna

This baby was special in that she had a very high-pitched cry that even got the attention of the nurses. Perhaps it was because her mother was a high soprano or because she wasn’t too happy to be here!

We soon knew who was going to be the boss in that home! Anna was born with reddish blond hair and cute little pixie ears. She also was my first grandchild to have blue eyes (like me)! Her middle name was after her great-grandmother Luisa, only the s was changed to z. That started our Z craze! Luiza, Zion, and Izabella! Oops, I am getting ahead of myself.

The only way we could get Anna to sleep was to bounce her up and down, so we made great use of our yoga ball. Cousin Ileina also enjoyed being bounced later on.

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Artwork, Beauty, Cultures, Grandchildren, Hawaii, health, holidays, home, Parenting, photography, travel, Uncategorized

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A new day, and a new blog!

This is the place we can share our positive experiences with our grandchildren.

12 grandchildren

Recently, I realized that I have twelve beautiful grandchildren to dote on! It is quite the blessing as well as a responsibility. These precious souls range in age from 10 to 21 years. Of course, I have a birthday board with their months listed on it and a block that represents each grandchild (placed carefully according to the day). It helps remind me of whose birthday is coming up.

With so many birthdays to remember, I also keep a list with my calendar reminding me what year they were born. I don’t want to miss any milestones in their lives, and pray the good Lord will allow me sufficient health and memory to celebrate those special days with them.

I would love to hear how you remember your grandchildren’s birthdays and tell us about any of those special days you have spent with them.

Please click on “Leave a comment” at the top of the blog to post. Thanks!

Birthday Board – gifted to me by Meilani Kongaika Christmas 2018
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