Jumping Waves



Have you ever jumped waves? It requires an ocean (or a lake large enough to have tides). I hadn’t jumped waves for eons, so last week when Mister and I waded into Maui’s warm Pacific waters, I wasn’t sure I’d remember what to do. As it turned out, knowing how to jump waves is one of those things we just don’t forget.


We made our way out to a point where I could still stand. Once in a while Mister wandered out farther, as he’s taller than I. But mostly, we stayed together. When the waves were evenly spaced, we were able to predict when to jump, keeping our heads above the water. When the waves wanted to have a little fun with us, none of our predictions helped. We took buckets of water in the face, ears and nose. There was a lot of laughter, and we barely stopped smiling.


When jumping waves, one can either use the ocean floor to push off, or simply tread water. With strong enough legs, treading alone allows a gal to keep her head up as the waves roll by. I used both techniques to great success. Though I suppose the amount of sea water I took in my sinuses might suggest otherwise.


One day, a nearby snorkeler told us there was a giant sea turtle just beneath Mister’s feet (we were out a bit deeper that day). We tried and tried, but we never saw the turtle.


On another day, an older gentleman kept trying to coax his wife out into the waves with him. She resisted for quite a while, but finally gave in. The only sound louder than their shared laughter was our own.


Before this vacation (our first in years), I was so stressed out that I was starting to have physical reactions. Nervous ticks, twitches, spasms. I had been so focused on what I perceived as Mister’s need of a break and a chance to relax that I failed to notice my own desperate state. When I finally realized how frenzied I was, I stressed myself out further by fretting over how (or even if) I’d be able to let go and have fun. How was I going to relax? How was I going to trust that everything was okay?


On that very first morning of vacation, during our very first wave-jumping session, Mister reached out and pulled me close. I lifted my feet from the sandy ocean floor, and allowed him to support me and keep me afloat. As a giant wave rolled in our direction, he said, “It’s okay. I’ve got you.” Then he jumped and lifted me above the passing wave. I wasn’t alone and didn’t have to fear the world as it tumbled toward me. I was in Mister’s arms. As I looked at the shoreline, I could hear another approaching wave. I felt Mister pull me closer and I knew he’d time his jump perfectly. He had me. He really and truly did.

Maui Wowie!



Mister and I spent our big anniversary on the Hawaiian island of Maui. To say it was grand would be the biggest understatement to pass my lips in adulthood. Let me just qualify it this way: it was greater than I had dreamed.



Hawaii can be predictable, with its luaus and rituals. But you know what? When you’re there, you don’t care! You’re happy to participate in any and every little thing that makes the place so, well, Hawaiian. For the record, Mister and I did not attend a luau, as we’ve done that before. But we hadn’t had tropical drinks in hollowed-out pineapples, so we jumped right on that one…



For the most part, we did a bunch of nothing. We did drive up Haleakala one day, where we were above the clouds. But we were too danged lazy to get up for sunrise, so that will have to wait for another time.


We almost managed to not get sunburned. But we went for what was supposed to be a short oceanfront stroll, and somehow managed to get lost. (I kid you not.) Cut to 3 miles later, and yes, we had gotten too much sun.



We ate magnificent food and we drank magnificent elixirs. People were friendly and the weather was beautiful. It would be easy to say Maui delivered everything we expected. But that wouldn’t be accurate. For we received so much more than expected, and we were all smiley and hand-holdy before we knew it.


There are about a jillion and one places I’ve never been and would love to visit. But I’ll tell you this: if I could go back to Maui next week, I would. And the week after that, and the week after that, and the week after that…


Goodbye Summer, Hello Fall!



Today is the first day of Autumn, and I for one am grateful to give it a big hello! Change is good for us, you know.


But changing to Autumn means saying goodbye to Summer. And Summer’s been awesome. Okay, it’s been challenging, too, but as part of my longing for joy, I’m choosing to focus on the positive. That means counting my blessings. With that in mind, here are 10 of my favorite things about this past summer (in no particular order)…


  1. John Oliver subbing on “The Daily Show.” Good Golly, Miss Molly. I loves me some John Oliver. (I love Jon Stewart, too, y’all, but the man has a life and needs to get away from that desk once in a while.) When John Oliver did his little dance move each time he spoke about “Carlos Danger,” I about rolled up in a little ball on the floor, overcome with the laugh-ies. I swear, that move killed. And just thinking about it makes me smile.
  2. News of Adidas’ plans to re-release the Stan Smith sneaker (come January 2014). This probably means nothing to most of you, but the Stan Smith sneaker stands out as my very favorite kick from childhood. For serious – I’ve got this marked on my calendar and will be looking for my own pair in January!
  3. Rock Camp! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I’ll volunteer with this group for as long as they’ll have me. Because I’ve seen the positive effects of this non-profit, it is definitely one of my very favorite charities.
  4. Jumping waves with Mister in Hawaii. I cannot tell you how amazing those few precious days were, or how much it meant to me to share that time with the love of my life. Or maybe I can tell you. And maybe I will – soon.
  5. “The Way Way Back” – I loved this movie so very much and it made me feel all the wonderful things that summer can provide. Okay, it also made me feel many of the painful things summer often presents. But ain’t that just life. I will always love this movie.
  6. Going to “Butterfly Wonderland” in Scottsdale, Arizona. I wrote about this one, and I’m still in awe. What an amazing experience! I’m so grateful I got to go there!
  7. Completing P90-X! Those 91 days just about kilt me, y’all. But they didn’t! And I came out of it stronger and dare I say, braver.
  8. “Camp” on summer television. This sweet, little show became something Mister and I looked forward to each week. It was fairly innocent (by today’s standards), and it was also fairly simple. But I was okay with that, and I loved the idea of all those families going to summer camp together. Each episode’s music was great, too, by the way.
  9. Summer Food! Each season brings its own array of edibles and this summer was no exception. Tomatoes, fruit, fish – wow! Here in SoCal, we’ll be blessed with summer’s bounty for a while longer and hallelujah to that. Y’all do know I likes to eat, don’t you?
  10. The auto show and auction I attended a while back! That was one of the best days ever and I loved it so much, y’all. Just being around all those old cars was a blast, and watching the auction blew my mind. I have no desire to own an auto of such esteemed provenance (good thing, too, as I can’t seem to find my spare half a mill just lying around), but I sure do appreciate the danged thangs. Beautiful!


I’m limiting this post to 10 items, but if I’m honest, the summer – with its challenges and hurdles – held far more gifts. I sincerely hope yours did, too.


And now, let the games begin! Time to tally up an entirely new list of fabulous fall moments. It’s gonna be awesome! For reals…