Aloha Friday Message – January 7, 2011

THE TODD FAMILY 41st ANNUAL CHRISTMAS LETTER for 2010

Yes, we’re a bit late with this one. This may be our First Annual Epiphany Letter. We wanted to wait until we finished our Christmas Cruise before sending the letter out. We went on a stay-cation this year. We got on the cruise ship Pride of America on Dec. 18, and sailed around the main Hawaiian islands. It was a lot of fun the first time we tried it back in 2005 on the Pride of Aloha, so we decided to try it again.

On-board living was OK. The meals were wonderful, and the cruise-line’s concept of “Freestyle Cruising” makes it a pleasant enough journey. This time we planned fewer sponsored excursions, and a lot more shopping excursions. Kaua‘i usually has a very limited line of clothing, so we hit the Ross stores in Honolulu, Kahului, Kona, and Hilo (there isn’t one on Kaua‘i). That was fun, too.

When we were on Maui we spent the day with Crucita’s nephew and his girlfriend. We got to go to Mass with them Sunday morning and then Breakfast at I-Hop!! It’s been wonderful having family with us here in Hawaii, and visiting them in their home was a real treat.

In Hilo we rented a car and went to see some of the local sites, especially Rainbow Falls. We’d already been to the volcano in 2005 and since it is erupting more the amount of VOG – volcanic ash and fog – was considerable, so rather than risk another upper-respiratory episode, we decided to skip that trip. We spent some time in the large shopping mall and just lucked out to catch a 3-D screening of Voyage of the Dawn Treader – which just happens to be my favorite in the Chronicles of Narnia series. THAT was AMAZING!!

In Kona we took a “land and sea” excursion. We toured along the coast in a really nice tour bus and went to visit the Mauna Loa Macadamia Nut factory. It was pretty interesting, and a beautiful drive there and back. One very special stop was at “The Painted Church,” St. Benedict’s in Captain Cook, HI. The pastor there is a great friend and terrific homilist – Fr. Al Rubadello. Or visit was short, but pleasant. He’s a member of the MBN, too!* Then we got on a catamaran and went up the west (Kona) coast of the Big Island and saw the sites from that perspective. On the way back we saw lots of marine life and ran through a drenching rain. No worries, though! It’s only water!!

The cruise then took us back to Nawiliwili harbor on Kaua‘i. While everyone else went on expeditions all over our beautiful island we went home and did laundry, cleaned up the cat boxes, and did some grocery shopping! Christmas Eve we had the joy of helping host the Midnight Christmas Mass aboard ship. Fr. Peter Dumag, the Diocesan Vocations Director, came on board and Crucita and I got to do all of the ministries associated with Mass including usher, lector, cantor for the Psalm, and Eucharistic Ministers. The ship was en route to Honolulu and the seas were high enough that it was literally a “very moving” Mass! There was an on-board nightclub a couple of decks below and the loud music was easily heard in the background throughout the liturgy. It’s the first Mass I ever attended that had a disco beat in the background – POON-dah, POON-dah, POONA-POONA-POON-dah! The experience was all the more blessed because of it being so unusual.

The trip ended in Honolulu Christmas day and we spent a couple of days in Waikiki. We got to go to Mass at St. Augustine by the Sea and met Fr. Lane Akiona, and it was a very lovely celebration for the Holy Family. We hung out in Waikiki for a couple of days – shopping and eating 🙂 . From Waikiki we went by air back to Kaua‘i, and that was a vacation we’ll remember for a long time – but may not do again. The nightlife on the cruise was so loud and so persistent we never got a full night’s sleep. Par-TAY! Until like 1-AM every night, and we were close enough to the main partying centers that we could hear – & feel – the music! OY!

Now, the rest of the family:

TIM is still in Portland, OR. He left his job with Higher Balance and is back to full-time musician – and doing well at it, too. His girlfriend, Chanson, is doing bookkeeping for several companies and still making the most amazing jewelry (see www.fujiokadesign.com for details). You can hear a couple of demo cuts from Tim at http://www.myspace.com/13timtodd13.

Cherie is still in Tennessee. Unfortunately her life is falling apart. Her husband’s drug use escalated and they eventually separated planning on divorce. She’s had huge legal problems based on custody of the kids, and they are now in foster-care. It’s been difficult for all of us. We ask for your prayerful support.

Zeta Todd, Chick’s mom was transferred to hospice a couple of months ago, and actually seems to be doing better now. His brother Dave and Dave’s wife Paula have done super-ordinary things to be her advocates, and we appreciate everything they do.

Crucita continues to teach at Kaua`i High. This year she got to add two new subjects to her repertoire: Sociology and Economics. We talk about retiring someday, but in this economy … “someday” may be a bit farther down the road. She continues to shape and fill the lives of students who are open to learning even as the number of students willing to learn decreases. She is always an exceptional inspiration!

Chick still works for Hawaii Home Infusion as well as for the three retail pharmacies owned by his boss. It is still a complicated job, but he enjoys working at it because of the people he works with. Chick and Crucita are also known as Godpapa and Godmama for Lily Mae and Ryder – our two godchildren. Those kids bring a great deal of joy into our lives, and we love them – and their parents – very, very much.

This year saw the launch of www.aloha-friday.org, an Internet home for the Moon Beam Network* piloted by the talented and generous geniuses at Kukui-IT (see www.kukui.com). The Aloha Friday messages from years past are all uploaded, and each weekly message is instantly sent out to subscribers. Chick is planning to discontinue sending the messages via email, so please make sure you go through the subscription signup process. Click on this link to get there: https://www.aloha-friday.org/subscribe. Both of us are also now on Facebook (who’d a thunk?) so look for us there, too. We are also both still active in our parish’s ministries as Lectors, and happy in our little home with Mimi, Hercules, Frankie, and Zoë. God’s blessings continue to overflow, and we rejoice in longtime friends as well as new friends along the way. And now we send you our traditional family greeting at Christmas time:

May Hope, and Peace, and Joy, and Love be yours through the coming of the Christ Child!
God Bless you all, and Merry Christmas!!!

Chick and Crucita
Champion3R@aol.com Cris1BG@aol.com
* Contact us about joining the Moon Beam Network if you are not already a member!

About the MBN

And also:
1101AFC010711
Happy Aloha Friday! Here is today’s scripture – from Exodus 15:2: My strength and my courage is the LORD, and he has been my savior. He is my God, I praise him; the God of my father, I extol him. In these difficult times, take courage in knowing that God loves you and cares for you. Turn to Him, and He will rescue you. Call to Him, and He will answer your plea.

Whatever, whenever, wherever, whoever, however, if ever, forever — at your service, Beloved!

Chick Todd
AGE QUOD AGIS

Share this:
Share this page via Email Share this page via Stumble Upon Share this page via Digg this Share this page via Facebook Share this page via Twitter

About Chick Todd

American Roman Catholic reared as a "Baptiterian" in Denver Colorado.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Type answer *

Pages Email Newsletter Categories Archives Connect