We’ve been in Hawaii for almost a week catching up with family and friends.  We’ll share some memories in another post.  This one is dedicated to the amazing night we had with the Soul Signature Ohana.

When coming to Ohau this time I wanted to add more story from my right 1/2 sleeve onto my left and Kitty wanted to get her first tattoo. Lopeti (Raspets) was who had done my previous piece and we both wanted him to help us with these new ones.  Lopeti is an amazing artist and soul.  He really puts the love of his craft into his work and was able to capture Kitty’s story perfectly.

Soul Signature is truly one big Ohana.  Sua Suluape Toeutu’u Aisea was welcoming guests, tattooing, and playing the occasional drums with the keiki.

Kitty’s took several hours and afterwards it was my turn.  This time I was getting a shoulder cap on the left side.  Lopeti added so many elements of my family and heritage to the piece it turned out perfect.  You’ll notice Kitty and I both have the Enata representing our marriage and 3 kids.

All pau at 2am?  Not yet…

As luck / fate would have it there happened to be a gathering of the top most venerated artists in the world.  Soul Signature was ground zero for the gathering.  The tattoo legend Freddy Negrete checked out both our tattoos and took some time to get a pic with Kitty.

Most of the night people were waiting for the arrival of the master and father Sua Sulu’ape Petelo. His plane landed after midnight and he came right over. He is such a kind soul and took time to talk story with us for awhile before the crowd arrived.  Watch the video above if you’re not familiar with him but he is also a tattoo icon and cultural legend.

It was a long night for the kids they danced and partied as long as they could till they eventually passed out on the tatau mats for pe’a and hand tapping in the back.

People from all over the world showed up while we were getting tattooed.  We met some amazing people from Tahiti, Samoa, New Zealand, Europe, modern Hawaii torch bearers, and even Rich from the Honolulu Tatau MC.  Check out our little Ohana in the background.  It was an amazing night with some of the most Aloha we’ve ever felt.  It was truly a special night at a special place.  Mahalo nui loa to Lopeti, Aisea, and the entire Soul Signature Ohana.

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Backyard

All kinds of budding growth happening in our backyard as spring transitions into summer

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Easter

We were thankful to have nice weather for Easter again this year. Our day was full with egg dyeing, eating, hunting for eggs and chasing bubbles. Lots of family love to celebrate 🙂

First, the eggs. Careful!

This pretty much sums it up. My kids: crazies. Cousin Cora: cool, calm, collected.

Who doesn’t love chasing big bubbles outside?

Luca did a great job helping his cousin find the bubbles

Time for Easter baskets!

And of course, the egg hunt

“I found one!”

Watch out!

We tried to get the obligatory ‘cousins on a swing’ picture. As you can see, my kids were perfectly behaved the entire time.

And we ALMOST got a perfect family picture. I guess when you’re two years old the rules don’t apply to you.

Auntie Libby and Cousin Cora had better success with their photo shoot

Photo bomb!

Baby Bartel, soon to join the family in the outside world, enjoyed her Easter too

Peek-a-boo

Take us out, Cora. Power to the flower y’all.

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Date Night

Now that the kids are a little older Kitty and I have been venturing out spending more time together and having more date nights.  This week we were both very excited to go see Radiohead at the Moda Center.

This was the first concert we’d seen since Paul Simon a few months back.  We’ve been to so many together from Pearl Jam to Herbie Hancock, and after three encores and a rare playing of Creep this one definitely ranked up there as one of the best.

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It was Autumn’s dinner theater.  This year’s theme was Country Fair Jamboree!  She has been practicing for so long and knew all her songs and dance moves.  It was pretty amazing to see her perform.

Our entire family was ready and won the blue ribbon for best dressed!

Autumn had a special singing and dance solo, the barnyard boogie, that we’ll post later once we get the video.

There was an auction for the special painting project her class made.

I put Luca in charge of the bidding paddle soooOoo we came home with it

and a giant balloon cow.

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Ready for our spring break trip to Sunriver!

After a four hour drive (including vomit all over the carseat on the way over the mountain pass) we made it!

First thing was to test out all of our fun gear with a bike ride to the park

The next day we went to Mount Bachelor for snowboarding, sledding, and in Mia’s case, lots of snacking (see previous post)

After the inevitable exhaustion following a trip to the mountain with three kids, the following day we decided to keep it low key with some time at the swim center

We rode bikes everyday, rain or shine

We also explored the nature center

Luca was pleased to see a real red-tailed hawk, his school’s mascot

There is also a small observatory, and we were quite impressed with their set up and knowledgable staff. Chris and Luca went back the following evening for some night-time star and planet gazing. They could see Jupiter and its moons!

Although it was still pretty cold most of the time, it was actually quite comfortable in the afternoon sun. Mia tried out a bit of a nap on the deck.

Later in the week Grammie and Pop Pop joined us for a couple of days. After their long drive we decided to get the legs moving with a walk to the park.Autumn conquered the firefighter pole all by herself for the first time!

Then it was off to the local brewery for a yummy (and silly) dinner

The next morning started off with everyone’s favorite breakfast – Grammie and Pop Pop’s blueberry wafflesFollowed by a nice long bike ride along the Deschutes River

Two little munchkins snuggled quite cozily in the Burley trailer

The grandparents offered to watch the kids while mom and dad went on a date in Bend – woo hoo!

The next day we went on a hike along the Deschutes River to Benham Falls

And among all of the many fun things we did during our vacation, we also found plenty of time for silly snuggles and selfies

and the hot tub!

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Family trip to Mt. Bachelor today

Warm-up snack. So many snacks! (great tip Tami ❤️)

Luca is all set and very excited to ride the chair lift.

Luca shredding the gnar


Silliness in the sled
 Some more snacking

Autumn getting in on the action

More snacking
A great day at the mountain

P.S. I also found out on this trip that apparently my snowboard gear is considered “vintage” 😁

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Kids These Days

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