Most of you know that I work at Mililani Middle School as a teacher's aide in the fully self contained classroom. These are the kids who have autism, severe ADHD, or mild mental retardation. It has it's challenges, but i love it. The kids never cease to entertain with their burning questions or outlandish declarations. Well, yesterday, I had an experience that was most certainly blog worthy in my opinion. I was out with my students at recess when a boy named Dean came and sat with my class. Dean is in another FSC class. He is blind and also has other mental disabilities. He sat next to Lola, a girl in my class who absolutely LOVES boys. She also likes for me to sit by her and talk to her whenever possible. So when Dean came to sit by her, Lola called me over and said, "Miss Kathleen, this is Dean." Dean then grabbed my arm, stood and asked, "who are you?" (considering he is blind, he has to identify you by voice.) I leaned closer and said, "I'm Miss Kathleen, I'm the teacher's helper." Dean then paused briefly. He seemed to be thinking about something for a moment and then put this little grin on his face. He leaned closer and said, "Miss Kathleen? Do you like my socks?" then twisted his ankle as to give me a better look at his white ankle highs. I was a bit puzzled by this question, but when you work with FSC it doesn't really phase you that much. I looked down at his tattered little socks and said, "Yes Dean, they are really nice." Immediatly after, I heard another teacher who had been standing near me earlier, interject with, "DEAN!! what are you doing??!" I was a little scared, what was so bad about a little blind boy asking me if i liked his socks? "Sorry, Dean likes to try to get new people to take off his shoes and socks." I looked at Dean as his plan had been foiled. He grinned a little mischeivious grin that told me that was exactly his plan. the little trickster. I love my job.
Last night my good friend Ka'anoi and I got to go to the Army Birthday Ball. He was the National Guard soldier of the year for the Hawaii sector. He invited me as his guest and told me that it was going to be like a prom so we fittingly named it "Army Prom." It was an... interesting experience. The funnest part was just getting dressed up and going out. His sisters did my hair and nails, so I felt pampered. I also thought it was cool when we got to the ball to see all the guys in their uniforms and the girls all dressed up. I felt like I'd just walked into the 1940's. (which is kinda what i was going for with the hair.)
We didn't know anybody at the ball, but it we had fun watching all the weird people that were there. Ka'anoi also made me take pictures there. We were standing kind of awkwardly, so I'm sure they'll be beauts. I'll make sure I post it when I get them. I made a few drunk friends and we got invited to go clubbing with this lady who had not spoken to us the entire night. Loved it. My favorite part of the night was when they announced Ka'anoi. "The N.G. Soldier of the year, Ka'ano'ipono (totally butchered) Cabrinha, if SHE'S here, could she please stand." so fired that guy.
Overall, it was okay. Lots of speeches and awards, but I thought it was a good opportunity to practice being formal and all. We left when all the drunk 45+ year old people started bumpin n' grindin on the dance floor. :/
This is right before we left. I know, we look SUPER excited.
Had to take some individuals.
I picked these Gardenias the day before at work. I got lots of compliments on them and they smelled great. Straight up class.
On Sunday, after 9 1/2 years, our little Kika passed away. She suddenly got very sick on Saturday evening and just got worse. We took her to the vet and she immediately had a seizure in my arms. After talking to the vet we decided the best course of action was to put her to sleep. It was heartbreaking to watch her deteriorate so quickly like that. We love and miss Kika very much. It still makes us cry to come home to an empty house, or not hear her bark whenever anyone comes to the door. She was the best dog. She was always friendly and she could always cheer me up. She was a great friend and brought a lot of happiness into our family.
We miss you Kika and we hope you are having fun running around on four legs again. :)
First Fridays in China Town is a great way to spend a friday night. lots of art, music and people watching opportunities. I also bought a really cool new ring. score.
This is the ultimate princess package. The guy with the top hat kept telling Ryan, "you should take her a carriage ride! It'll make her real happy!" no thank you.
This is Rachel. She and Nathan accompanied us.
I really liked this gold painting
Drummers on the side walk. One thing I loved about this was all the different people and all the movement, life and sounds.
Then today, my dear Alana and I went to the swap meet. I bought a second cool ring. They always have really cool jewelry and things here, but also have a lot of assorted crap. Just imagine an endless row of mall kiosks and you pretty much have the swap meet. As Alana and I passed the many different vendors we picked out our favorite treasures.
We really hope someone buys us these precious gems one day. (mine was too small.)
Best bracelet of all time.
Lana and her creepy crawling baby.
I wanted this hairy mask SO bad.
We've decided that our favorite past time is walking through the swap making fun of the crappy stuff we find there.
After a long day, we went to Haleiwa to meet up with some peeps and ate at killer tacos.
I met this guy today. His name is Jeff, and this is his big slipper.