There can be something exhilarating about tossing your line into the water, letting your bait drift for a minute, then feeling those first subtle tugs as a fish tests it out. Those moments between the first nibbles and the final bite that takes the bait are filled with curiosity, excitement, and hope. For me, thinking of those moments brings back memories of warm summer days and cool, crisp nights; cold rivers; deep lakes; mountains; family; forests; and fresh air mixed with the pungent smell of bait and fish.
With an invitation from Grandpa Robert and Nana Cin, we took the girls up to Courtright Reservoir to go fishing. Having been fishing with my side of the family once before, all three girls were ecstatic to head back out to the water and try their luck. We arrived in the evening of August 7, and they couldn’t wait for the next morning.
In the beginning of August, 4/5 members of Team Hokama took a trip to visit Grandma Linda and Grandpa Sam in Fair Oaks (near Sacramento). And while most visits with the grandparents are pretty special, this one was particularly unique because it was the first road trip without Mama. We decided it was an opportunity for Sarah to have a weekend for herself at home, something she hasn’t had ever. Isn’t that something to marvel at? Sarah has had virtually zero extended time away from the kids in 10 years.
It shows the commitment level that Sarah has to the team; that we’ve had years and years of younger, more needy children; and how easy it is to put things off, thinking “some day.” We’ve talked and talked about getting her a break but it just hasn’t happened. So this was the time to do it.
It’s easy to get caught up in our daily life. Work, school, doctors appointments, grocery shopping, meal prep…it really goes on and on. And the day-to-day of life in America becomes such a routine and feels like such a necessity to maintain, that we lose sight of or miss out on the things that we enjoy or make us happy.
Vacation is really a life-saver. It gives us permission to carve out time for ourselves and each other and let go (at least partially) of the constant stream of responsibilities. That’s why our family enjoys camping. It’s a perfect way to disconnect from the business of everyday life and screen time (email, social media, news, TV, etc.), and reconnect with the essentials. When the focus is shifted solely to spending time together, relaxing, playing, enjoying nature and being outside, eating, and sleeping…life almost becomes easy.
This weekend (Friday–Monday) Sarah took the girls on a Girls Only camping trip with Tia (Iana, Sarah’s sister), Cousin Olivia, Cousin Emile (no, Emile is not a girl, but he’s a baby, so, free pass), and Grandma. This is the second trip like this they’ve taken, the first being when Keana was a toddler. I think they had originally planned to do it every year, but then life happened. The girls were super-excited for the trip but they did all need to bring Papa shirts to sleep in.
I’m looking forward to all the stories I’m sure they’ll tell me, all at once, the minute they walk in the door. But in these last moments of quiet I have to myself, I want to write down some thoughts from my weekend flying solo so I cement them here and in my brain: