Procrastinate now!!! Don’t put it off!!!

March 1, 2013

I know what you’re thinking…”thank GOD Katie is finally updating her blog!!!  I’ve been on pins and needles for months!”  Wow.  I just re-read my last post.  May, 2012.  Really?  I deserve a most horrible blogger award.  I’m not even going to promise to do better because clearly I won’t deliver.  I realize this greatly upsets my 7 readers.  I am currently under the weather, however, and instead of focusing on the many papers I have looming, I decided it would be easier to chat away about our lives instead of about psychoeducational therapy or post-structuralist feminism.  So, I must go waaaaay back in time to the last time I wrote!  I went home to Kentucky in mid-June to see my dear friend Toni walk down the aisle!  She was a beautiful bride (of course)

Image  and it was wonderful to get to be a part of her special day.  I had not been home in several years and I was realllllly excited!  It’s weird though, when I go home now, I am often treated as an outsider.  People aren’t super friendly and tend to stare at me as if they’re thinking, “We haven’t seen her around here before.”  It just plain irritates me!  I want to stomp my feet and scream, “Look here, ya’ll, I was born and raised here and this is MY hometown, too!”  🙂  But I guess the saying’s true, you can never go home again.  Even so, I really enjoyed my trip.


I went on nostalgic morning runs around my old middle school, drank beer with my Dad on his boat while listening to bluegrass, and got to soak up some fine Kentucky bourbon and fried Southern fixin’s.  Meanwhile, back on the island, Joe was going through his Iodine therapy treatments.  We talked every day and his side effects were minimal.  It was painful not to be able to be with him, but of course even if I had

Imagestayed, we couldn’t be anywhere near each other.  He was in the hospital for 3 days, then sent home to recover. Another great part of going home was SistOR party, 2012!  We 4 girls packed up to spend several nights in a rustic cabin in Nashville, IN.  It’s an adorable country town that my Mom used to take us to when we were kids.  We had a grand time; drinking wine, cooking homemade pizza, hanging in the hot tub, and shopping in the town square.  I really miss those sistORs!!!  I could feel Mom’s presence with us at times, certainly while shopping.  We even had a contest to see who could pick out the most “Mom-ish” item in the store – the ONE thing she would just have to buy!  🙂

ImageUpon coming back to Hawai`i, I had another exciting thing happening…my little sis, Rebecca (my Shoo) was coming back with me!  She was starting grad school at UH with her big sister!  Hilariously enough, in my very program! (Social Work).  I was so excited to have family on the island with me.  She stayed with us only a few short days before securing an apartment and shortly thereafter, we both started school.  It’s still surreal when I run into her on campus.  I think, “What are YOU doing here?!?!”  😛  Here is a pic of us on campus the first time together!  Image

So then, it was back to the grind.  Joe was back to work and on a path to get healthy again. I was back to grad school for my 2nd year, starting my teaching position and trying to juggle that with a full load of coursework and another part-time job in the Women’s Studies office.  Needless to say, I was a busy, busy girl.  That semester went by in a crazy blur.  I quite literally, had no life.  Every single moment it seems was spent in work or in class, or working on something for work or class.  But it was exciting, too.  I was teaching a course on the History of Sexuality and LOVING it!  The students were mainly 18-19 yrs. old and for many, this was their first exposure to a women’s studies class.  I found out, sort of shockingly, that I adore that age group!  Unlike high school students (who think they know everything), they’ve moved onto college and are, subsequently, thrown into a world that they’ve never known.  They’re exposed to people very different from them and as such, are very open to learning and thinking about things in a different way.  Buuuut they’re also old enough to be mature and respectful.  I had a blast!  I remember being that young student in MY first women’s studies class…so wide-eyed and amazed at what I was learning.  I got to see that light go on for some of my students that semester…it was a wonderful feeling.  It was a discussion-based course so we had wonderfully thoughtful and insightful sessions.  It definitely solidified my hunch that I want to teach.  🙂

Right after school began, it was time to celebrate my 33rd birthday!  I cannot BELIEVE I am 33.  Where oh where does time go?  Now I understand why old people are always lamenting about the passing of time.  I’ve joined those ranks.  We decided that since I am now a mature, repsonsible adult, that I really needed to have a pirate-themed beach bash.  Yup.  I LOVE theme parties (got it from my Mom) and my friends and my Joe were hilariously on board.  I’m a lucky, lucky, gal.

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In late September, I took the plunge and ran my 3rd marathon on Maui.  I had been sneakingiphonepicssummer2012.2 035 in training runs whenever possible, but with such a busy schedule it was really difficult.  Still, I had high hopes of getting a new PR (trying to beat my 3:57). Buuuuut that was not to happen.  It was the hottest Maui marathon on record and I had a really difficult race.  I had stomach issues nearly the entire way and at times didn’t think I would be able to finish.  But finish I did, in 4:17.  Not what I wanted, but I was still happy to have completed my 3rd.  That marathon will humble you every time, I tell ya!  I actually ended up in the medical tent afterward, due to severe dehydration.  I was a mess!


I took a break mid-semester to celebrate the birth of my big sis, Amy in…Vegas, baby!  She was turning 40 and doing it in style with her best friend Kasey and I!  HOW could I miss it?  I had such a wonderful time!  While Amy and I have always gotten along and talk very regularly, we rarely get to spend any one-on-one time together.  So it was really lovely getting to hang with her by myself.  We ate delicious food, toured the strip, danced, and the highlight of the trip – we went skydiving!

It’s something I’ve wanted to do for so long but have always been too scared!

ImageBut Amy…nope!

She hardly batted an eyelash, even when her instructor (attached to her and yeah, responsible for her life) confessed he’d been out all night partying and was “a little hungover.”  Ha! We jumped right outta that plane and It. Was. Amazing.  I’m so glad we did it!  Jumping over the Hoover Dam and seeing all of the beautiful colors of the desert was indeed, surreal.  Its something I’ll never forget and something I would totally do again!  Thanks, sis!  Here is a pic of me flying through the air like a SuperKatie!!!!

Phew.  It’s hard to summarize 9 months into one blog!  I’m leaving a TON out!  As the semester chugged along, I tried to find little ways to have some fun.  We, of COURSE went

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out for a Halloween – NO ONE does Halloween like Honolulu…they love it!  We went to the big Chinatown block party, Hullabaloo, as we do every year.  But this year, we brought our Kentucky roots!  I was the Turtle Man, and Joe was my feisty snapping turtle.  I think the Turtle Man would have been proud, personally. Unfortunately, a tsunami warning closed the block party down early, but we went to high ground (a skyrise apartment building of a friend) and continued with our Halloween antics.   

Other fun little stops along the way include the color run with friends, where you get splashed with color every 1/2 mile (sort of emulating the Hindu celebration of Holi), which is a BLAST!  I highly recommend it for some crazy, colorful fun.

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Also, we got to take a little getaway to the Big Island to meet my uncle David and Aunt Jeannie!  It’s sooo fun to share Hawai`i with family…most of my family have never been here and it’s become such a large part of who we are that it feels strange not to have family understand it.  I LOVE the Big Island.  You can be up in the mountains with snow and cold, rushing winds, or in a lush green tropical rain forest, or among the amazing lava fields on the volcano.  We had a great time hangin’ with them but I sadly did not get any shots of Dave and I together!  So you get this one of Joe and I on black-sand beach.  🙂

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As I mentioned in my last post, Joe and I were in dire need of a vacation together.  We did not have the time to take a trip abroad, so we decided to use our annual Thanksgivingaversary (our anniversary and Thanksgiving break) to take a little trip to San Francisco!  It has been years since I visited that city, and I forgot just how amazingly fabulous it is.  Honestly, if I had to pick another place to live besides Hawai`i, San Fran would be at the top of the list.  It is so visually stunning, with its rolling hills and colorful homes.  I love the different neighborhoods and how artistic and eclectic the city is.  If only it weren’t FREEZING!!!  If I could combine Honolulu’s weather and diversity with San Francisco’s urban, artsy vibe, I don’t know why anyone would live anywhere else!  🙂  We biked the Golden Gate Bridge, had Thanksgiving dinner in the Castro, shopped and drank our way through the Haight, and ate a LOT of delicious Italian calories in North Beach.  We had a wonderfully fun, romantic time.  Here is a slideshow of our trip!

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Before I knew it, finals were upon me and it was crunch time.  The class I was teaching had over 130 students, so grading 130 final papers on TOP of my own finals made me INSANE.  It was a very stressful few weeks.  I got through it however, and somehow managed to hold onto my 4.0.  It’s so funny – I was never this motivated in undergrad.  I did the bare minimum and am now so regretful.  I could have gotten so much more out of my classes had I just put in as much effort toward school as I did toward beer.

Christmas and NYE 2012 012 We spent Christmas in Honolulu again this year.  I really love our Christmases.  We eat until we wanna explode, watch Christmas movies, play games, drink eggnog, and open presents.  It’s relaxing and stress-free.  There are always those moments when we talk to family that make me sad we’re not all together, but it’s also nice to have our own little Caldwell-ish holidays.  My little sis joined us Christmas and NYE 2012 020this year though, so it felt like more of a family holiday.  Three’s Company in full force!  🙂  I cook now (yeah, it’s weird) so I cooked up a friggin’ storm…yummy, delicious foods and we gorged on them for daysssss.  For New Year’s, Joe and I decided to hole up like two little bears (Barrrrrrrs) hibernating.  We rented a beach house in Ka’a’awa on the windward side of the island.  Normally, I am a TOTAL sucker for NYE.  I love making resolutions, celebrating the new year, saying goodbye to the old year.  And since this past year included cancer for the love of  my life, we were sort of happy to see it go.  I think it’s for this reason that we didn’t want a big party, we just wanted a quiet few nights together.  We played cards, drank wine, read books, and lounged leisurely with the waves lapping in the background.  We grilled food and watched movies and snuggled.  It was so lovely, especially considering what a stressful, busy year it had been.

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As you all know, I LOOOOOVE resolutions and made a whole new batch to go along with 2013!  I did pretty well in 2012 – I ran another marathon, I traveled more (got off the island 4 times!), kept my 4.0, secured a Graduate Assistant position in Women’s Studies, moved out of our God-awful apartment that I looooaaathed, celebrated sistOR trip 2012, started cooking to eat more healthfully, and went sky-diving!  I missed a few resolutions from last year, but overall…kicked some serious resolution ass.  The best part, however, is watching Joe happily move on from this stressful year.  He handled everything with such grace.  Never complaining, always making completely inappropriate cancer jokes (that we find hilarious), and moving through his surgery and treatments with strength.  I love that Joe…thank you to everyone for your kind thoughts, prayers, phone calls, texts, food drops, and aloha.  And on that happy note, I will end this terribly long blog update, and pick up next time in 2013.  Probably in August, I’m guessing.  Mahalo nui loa for dropping by!

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2 Responses to “Procrastinate now!!! Don’t put it off!!!”

  1. WELL IT IS BLOGGER HELL FOR YOU. Glad you did the update but get with it. You are living in a beautiful place so show us. Our little whistle boat will be there someday. Love you all

    Daddy-o and Denise, Bella and Bailey


  2. Sandy Henderson said

    Hello stranger! I have been so very terrible keeping up with all! Loved your update! I am not good at the facebook stuff so this was terrific for me. Keep the updates coming. Thrilled Joe is doing well and you guys are still enjoying Hawaii. Love, Sandy


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