Wow! Can you believe it has been an entire year since our last post?
So much has happened. We had a great beachfront retirement party for our friend John who just retired from Apple. We traveled to The Big Island and Oahu for the first time in years. Kathy had remarkably successful eye surgery and I had major back surgery. I am a new man as a result. Unfortunately, we lost our beloved fur baby, Teddi. He was a beautiful and loving member of our ʻohana. He will be missed.
In spite of inflation and the outrageously high cost of living, Maui is still a great place to live. The weather has been a little strange and unpredictable and drought conditions persist although not as severe as in the last few years.
This time of year is when we should pause, be thankful for what we have, and celebrate with our family and friends.
So, be safe and be well. Health, happiness, and prosperity in the coming year.
Traditional gig amplifiers are large, heavy and donʻt sound that good at low volume. Over the years I have spent a lot of time and a lot of money looking for a good practice amp that can produce great sound at low volume. Voila!
The Positive Grid Spark amp fits the bill perfectly. It is small but powerful and sounds great at any volume. It has a basket full of amp models and effects and can also be used as a Bluetooth speaker. Everything can be controlled from the free app. And at 40w it can be used for jamming and some small gigs.
As I was reading the UCLA Fall 2022 magazine, I came across an article titled High Anxiety by Dan Gordon that caught my interest. I assumed it was another discussion on how real post-covid/high inflation anxiety (PCHIA) is, with perhaps some new suggestions on how to handle the anxiety. It begins:
“With its persistent grip, COVID-19 has exacted an unimaginable toll on all of us. It’s taken lives and livelihoods, canceled celebrations, isolated us from family, friends, and co-workers. Coupled with a news cycle dominated by ceaseless reports of global war, mass shootings and a nation seemingly hopelessly divided, we shouldn’t be surprised that we’re all dealing with increasing amounts of crippling anxiety.”
The author included familiar suggestions that are good to remember:
Remember You Have Choices
Exert Some Control
Keep it Routine
Flip the Script
I wanted to further pursue these suggestions to see if I could discover new techniques to help tamp down the anxiety. I encountered several validating statistics from the American Psychological Associationthat mentioned that among the (PCHIA) symptoms are “forgetfulness, inability to concentrate, and difficulty making decisions.”
So I felt a bit relieved that I’m not losing my cognitive abilities, but still wanted to learn more about how to handle this anxiety. This led to a study of Future Tripping.This, in turn, leads us back to Mindfulness. Wikipedia’s definition of mindfulness is:
“the practice of purposely bringing one’s attention to the present-moment experience without evaluation.”
My interpretation is that inherent in this definition is the concept of Future Tripping. Future Tripping is also called anticipatory anxiety. It’s part of the human condition of looking into the imagined future and anticipating the outcome. The practice of future tripping increases anxiety, however, and when we’re anxious, chances are we’ll anticipate the worst possible outcome. So future tripping is a good thing to avoid. We can do that by practicing mindfullness.
In my pursuit of more help on this subject, I discovered a fascinating concept that I had not heard of before: Searching not just for serenity, or peace, but more importantly, for inspiration.
In Gabby Bernsteinʻs blog article “Beware of Future Tripping” she reiterates the idea that the fastest way to release an outcome and the pressure of expectations is to reconnect with the present. Part of her suggestion to do “one small thing each day” she mentions that the purpose is not only to focus on now, but to pursue inspiration. When we change our expectation of “what will happen when I do this,” to “what can I do to feel inspired,” the one small thing each day opens up endless opportunities for positive, surprising, and self-caring outcomes.
I could go on, this concept facinates me so much. But instead, I’ll suggest that you check out herwebsite for a four-step framework for making feeling inspired a priority.
As 2021 comes to a close, now would be a good time to reflect on all that has happened in the last year. From an attempted coup to a resurgence of Covid. As we always do, we hung together and weathered the storm
Here in Hawaii it looked like we dodged a bullet. But alas the Delta variant knocked us for a loop and sent our economy into another tailspin.
This time of year is when we should pause, be thankful for what we have, and celebrate with our family and friends, in person if possible.
So my friends, be safe and be well. Health, happiness, and prosperity in the coming year.
Well, THIS caught my eye. I was hoping that by this time, December 2021, I would be able to write an article about “Whew, that was close! Now we can get back to normal.” If only. . .
This last almost-two years has been unbelievable – impossible to describe easily or painlessly. From one level of stress to the next, smothered in conflict, heartbreak, and sadness, and just plain denial when it’s gotten to be too much, we’re in danger of sagging. We never give up, but we may sag.
The uncomfortable reality is that it’s not over yet. We still must take control of how we internalize all of this negativity, find ways to lift the heaviness, and, depending on our circumstances, keep moving onto the best of our abilities. That’s the key; we must keep moving.
So when I came across the following article from the Cleveland Clinic dated September 13, 2021, I thought that the advice presented was extremely helpful. I will summarize some of the main points in the article, but I suggest that reading the entire article would be even more helpful.
The article presents 10 ways to manage stress as the pandemic lingers:
Take (some) control
Be in the present
Keep moving forward
Take a break from decisions (my favorite)
Find silver linings
Find new ways to de-stress
Work through your feelings
Get help if you need it
I hope these topics have piqued your interest to read the full article on theCleveland Clinic site. Think of it this way, if nothing else, reading through the material will keep your mind busy for awhile. It feels validating, at least, to know we’re not alone in this discomfort. Personally, the 2 points I find the most helpful are to Connect and Keep Moving Forward.
Together we will make it through. Here’s to a new year with new beginnings.
The election is over so, let’s kiss and makeup, ’cause the year ahead is sure to be challenging and it’s gonna take all of us to pull together and weather the storm. Good riddance to 2020!
Hawaii has suffered more than most. We have been great in protecting ourselves from “The Virus” but in the process our economy has been ravaged and I am sure many other areas that rely heavily on tourism have also experienced a big setback.
This time of year is when we should pause , be thankful for what we have and celebrate with our family and friends, even if that means doing so from a distance.
So my friends, be safe and be well. Health, happiness and prosperity in the coming year.
It has been quite awhile since we posted to our blog. And quite awhile since we moved back to Maui. We are finally settling into our lives here in Hawaii and although we lived here for many years prior to coming back, the transition still proved to be challenging.
One of the most unsettling aspects of living here (and the same was true the last time I lived here) is that you make friends and then they move away. I guess you can say that about any place. But, it’s more pronounced here.
We made a decision to stay in the original home we bought and not move to the larger home we intended to purchase. The first home we bought is much easier to take care of, leaving more free time to enjoy our surroundings. We also made a decision to get off the career treadmill and work part-time. Kathy settled at The Maui Brewing Company as an Administrative Assistant 3 days a week, I went to work with
State Farm Insurance as a Representative from which I retired on March 15, 2019. I have since returned to my passion of being a Hana Tour Guide. I connected with Temptation Toursand conduct Hana tours 3-4 days a week.
The weather on Maui this last year has been very wet. In fact it has been one of the wettest and coldest ( yes, we even had snow as low as 6,200 feet) years on record. Maui also had a very rare hurricane. Fortunately, the area where we live is protected by some large mountains and what we experienced was not much more than a very rainy and windy day.
It’s been about three months since we arrived back on Maui to begin our new life in our old home. The first week was hectic, to say the least. All we had was a mattress and box spring, so we pretty much camped out until our container of personal belongings arrived. Immediately upon arrival at Kahului airport on June 27th, we picked up our rental SUV and then went to the agricultural station to retrieve our dog Teddi before heading home.
Our cars arrived from Matson Navigation about a week early, so we returned our rental car sooner than expected. We registered our cars and got new Hawaii driver’s licenses that week. Then around July 22nd, our PODs container arrived, with most of our personal belongings. About a week later our second container arrived with additional stuff that had to go into storage.
Everything went about 95% according to plan. The one thing we didn’t anticipate was Teddi getting sick with bladder stones, which required expensive surgery that really set us back. But he’s doing well now, in fact more like a puppy than a ten-year-old dog. His vet was amazing, Tana Weeks, at Maui Lani Veterinary Hospital about 2 miles from our home. We are so very fortunate. He loves his new environment and has taken it upon himself to go strolling through the dog-filled neighborhood unsupervised. What a mayor! We had to put up doggie gates so that he stays in the house until we’re ready to take him out.
I got a job selling appliances at Lowe’s in Kahului and Kathy decided to take a few months off while she acclimates to the new environment (i.e., locating the best beaches and swimming pools). I previously lived on Maui for several years and everything was already pretty familiar to me. Kathy previously lived on Oahu, but Maui is very different, and required some getting used to. She has already made a lot of new friends, joined a local gym, and has taken a couple of great art classes. She anticipates looking for contract work soon.
Everything is pretty much humming along, and we are beginning to really settle down. We consider ourselves blessed to be able to achieve this dream, after many years of planning and hard work.