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Papa Gary visits the farm

Snow Globes I spent a week on the farm Aug 30 through Sept 6.  My priorities were to spend time with our granddaughters, take them fishing, celebrate Gary's 38th birthday, visit Mauna Kea Observatory, help build the barn and help with some farm work.  All were accomplished and we had a lot of fun doing it.  Sarah and Emily are such sweet girls it is hard living so far away from them but instant messaging and the web cams help us stay in touch.

We knew Emily has taken a liking for Snow Globes.  They aren't exactly common items in either Hawaii or San Diego and the ones online were all about Christmas.  So with help from Grandma Laqueta and Valerie, I put together the supplies to make our own.  Emily's has a pony and a giant sunflower, Sarah's a kitty (surprise).  It was great fun but I'm afraid it will be months before Valerie gets all of the glitter out of the kitchen.

Beach Gary wanted to go to a special beach for his Birthday.  It was fantastic: clean, sandy beach, good surf, some rocks for snorkeling, clean showers and a geocache.  We had a great time but got too much sun.  It felt great to get back to Kona Earth, 2,100 feet up the mountain where it is COOL!

Barn Farm work is hard.  We spent a lot of time fixing the mower and other equipment.  I decided Gary needs a chainfall hoist for his new barn so he doesn't hurt his back lifting stuff.  When we find one, it will be his birthday present.  I feel like we got a lot done on the “barn”.  We framed in and installed the front windows, finished the south siding, installed the vertical electrical conduit and built a “power closet” for the main transfer box.  Although I stayed true to the motto on my new shirt:  “I'm retired… it may take awhile!”  I worked slowly but the barn is almost ready for the new electricity.  Then the roof!

Ribs I picked delicious white pineapple almost every day for breakfast and I brought two home with me (agricultural inspection for pineapples is a breeze).  I also fixed sourdough waffles in Gary's new birthday waffle iron.  Gary and Sarah ate a half dozen each, although Sarah prefers hers with chocolate chunks inside.  To prevent Valerie from doing all of the cooking, I barbequed ribs one night.  Sarah and Emily love ribs.

Hunters Next trip I want to go pig hunting and barbeque wild ribs.  We did go for a long hike up the mountain and saw one pig, but without Justin's dogs, we couldn't catch it.

Mowing and working in the fields are a lot harder than they look.  You are alternately pushing large tree branches over your head or bending down and moving smaller branches so you can get under them.  My back still aches, days later.  But farm work isn't all drudgery.  I enjoyed watching the goats play “King of the Hill” while I mowed the adjacent field.  Also Gary felt like a risk taker one day and let me drive the “BIG RED TRACTOR” to move a new foundation pier into place.  Another childhood dream comes true!

Mowing Tractor
Our trip to Mauna Kea was spectacular, even though the bright moon detracted some from the star gazing.  The sunset from the top was fantastic.  You can see it almost real time at: http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/mko/webcams.htm

PS When they say “dress warm” believe them.


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