Thursday, October 14, 2010

If you're in need of a laugh...

What the MIA??

Missing In Action...ha...its true! IM NOT DEAD! We're Oakland...and still trying to figure out how we feel about it...well, at least I am. I'm still trying to decide if I even want to bother going over the last several months. Lets just start with the big ones which I will write blog entries for later. For now, lets just cover the bullet versions! ha

*Training camp came and went. We attended our very first NFL game on August 28th against the San Francisco 49ers...we lost :( but it was fun to watch my love live his dream...even if it was on the wrong die of the ball and the wrong

*Manase made the Raiders practice squad. I was over the proud of him!

*My Leila bugg turned 1! and we had a big ol' birthday bash combined with her cousin Micah who turns one in October.

*After way too much time apart, the kids and I finally moved to Oakland to join Daddy...

And now here we in a hotel the middle of Oakland. A foreign city, where I know like 3 least that I know well enough to call...and no friends. Thankfully I have my family, Manase's family is also up I'm getting an opportunity to get to know them a little better. I do enjoy that we are together as a family for the 1st time since May. I also LOVE the city of San Francisco. Growing up Orange County, which is known as the suburbs of LA, I've never been this close to a real life city. SanFran is just a short drive over the bay bridge and I love going there, it makes me feel like I'm in a movie or something. lol I LOVE seeing the ocean everyday, I LOVE the early 20th century architecture that is EVERYWHERE. I never really appreciated the bay area for all the beauty there is to be seen up here.

I'm not going to even talk about all the things i MISS because that will just make me cry and get me all depressed. but those people know who they are. :)

I prefer pics over words...they do say a thousand words so here we go.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Leila Lata 'i Lomoloma Tonga turns 1

My babygirl is already a year old and I can't believe it!

*doesn't walk yet but she can stand on her own
*she has 4 teeth, two on top, two on bottom
*crawls like a pro...and is probably faster than Semisi runs
*weighs 25lbs...although she doesnt look it!
*is mommy's little independent baby. she does her own thing and doesnt want to be bothered by anyone especially her brother. She sleeps by herself and even puts herself to sleep.
*has an odd obsession with anything soft. she holds it up to her mouth and nose to where its barely touching and her mouth looks like its sucking on an invisible binkie..and she zones out...its the WEIRDEST thing to watch and i have no clue where she got it from! but she has to do it to fall asleep. lol

For her birthday we did a combined party with my nephew Micah who turns 1 in October. It was a prince/princess theme (of course) but it turned out way cuter than i even imagined! We made EVERYTHING for this party. From the personalized invitations, to the birthday banner, to the tissue ball decorations and Castle centerpieces. *even the CONFETTI!* It was definitely a labour of love and I haven't a clue how we're going to ever top this one! haha

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Raiders Family Day in Napa Valley

The Raiders had a "family day" on Sunday at their training camp in Napa so I figured it would be a great excuse for us to see Manase, especially since its been nearly a month since we've seen him. So we packed up the car on Friday and drove 7 hours up to Napa Valley.

It was such a beautiful day and we were so excited to see him in action. It was so nice to see him fulfilling his dream, I couldn't be more proud of everything he's done. The kids so ECSTATIC to see him. I think it's harder on them than anyone else. It always breaks my heart seeing Semisi break down every time he has to leave his Dad. He already recognizes that his Dad is gone a when we do see him, Semisi is so stuck to him because he's afraid of Manase leaving again. It's hard, but we know that these small sacrifices are necessary right now so our lives can be a little easier in the long run. Hopefully we'll be able to move up and join Manase in Oakland soon.

Anyway, it was a fun day! We watched practice and there was a BBQ for all the guests afterwards. His schedule was open for the rest of the night until bed check at 11 so we spent every possible second together.

The hardest part is over, as far as being apart. The Raiders first preseason game was last week against the Dallas Cowboys. Manase played a little bit in the 2nd quarter and the entire 3rd quarter. He had some really solid blocks and I was so excited to see him play in his first NFL game. It was a great game! The Raiders pulled out the win 17-9 which was exciting!

He plays in Chicago on Saturday, then they finally come home to Oakland to play the 49ers. We'll be there for sure to cheer him on in person. GO #41!

Monday, August 2, 2010


So this post was sparked by a friend of mine who decided to put me on blast for referring to her adorable little family as "perfect".

It makes me think...what makes a marriage or a family PERFECT..or at least appear to be. Well, my first response would be that there's no such thing. Just like we are all human, and cannot be perfect without the Savior who atoned for our sins that we might achieve perfection...I guess imperfect people couldnt possibly have a perfect marriage...or could they?

Now we're getting deep here. This questions begs an even broader one. Stay with me here mind tends to wander ALOT. The Savior was once referred to as the "Bridegroom" and the church the "bride", one without the other would have no purpose, right? So more literally...a bride and a groom, like Manase and I...should be the same right?

Anyway, we all know them. THE PERFECT FAMILY in church. While you're sitting in the back row in sacrament with candy, cheerios, baby spit up all making up the colors on your black blouse. Your hair hasn't been properly brushed for who knows how haven't worn makeup...well, since you had them...which by this time means you dont even know what the word makeup means anymore! You insist on wearing slippers because you REFUSE to break your ankle running after an overly rambunctious 2 year old (who seems to believe that his mission in life is to make yours a living hell) in 6 inch heels. Your baby wont seem to stop crying for anything and you swear it seems like they want to cry just because they KNOW they're not supposed to. Meanwhile your husband is dozing off, not even noticing your frustration. Just as you're questioning your sanity...wondering why did I get married and do this to myself? I used to be so cute and dolled up for walks "The Smiths" as we'll call them. Their four kids are perfectly groomed from their starched shirts and ties to the girls perfectly curled hair. The file in quietly, sit in the front row, and you never hear a peep from the kids, not even the 10 month old. Even he's folding his arms!! haha All the kids know their scriptures and can proudly recite all 13 articles of faith their mom made them memorize. Even the mom has perfect hair...often I find myself staring and wondering when does this lady find time to all this?? After sacrament you have to listen to her go on and on about what a perfect life they have. They're children never misbehave and her husband is Prince charming straight outta the fairytales. *gag*

Maybe I'm the only one who's dealt with a family like this...but it brings to mind something my dad always told me. "The only people who are normal, are the people you don't know" to which I could make my own change for the sake of relevancy that "The only people who are PERFECT are the people you don't know" or at least that you don't know well enough to know their imperfections. No one's perfect once you get to know them. We all have fights, and tantrums, and I'm sure that at one time or another we've all googled what it would take to get a divorce, whether serious or not. (or maybe thats just me haha)

I like to think that although our marriage may not be perfect...the sum of us is MUCH better than the parts. I am far from perfect...and my husband has his imperfections too...oh lets be honest...he's about as far from it as i am. hahaha But what I love about us is that together, we make up for what the other lacks. He fills in my blank spots and I fill in his. Sure, we fight..alot. but that just means we makeup just as much! And with every fight I learn something new about him and also about myself. We learn what makes the other angry or what makes them sad, so we can hopefully adjust to avoid that argument in the future. With every mistake, with every disagreement, we grow. we're like a jigsaw puzzle...apart we just look like jagged pieces of nothing...but TOGETHER...well, put together we could be a work of art...and a perfect one at that. So yes...I think we're perfect...even if it's just imperfectly perfect. We, together, make the perfect picture. And once you add our family, it just makes the picture that much more beautiful.

We're all working together, striving for perfection and eternity...not one of us could do it alone. And its PERFECT. So say what you will about us...okay we fight, I may not dress up like I used to, I've gained alot of weight, my babies are free spirits and don't listen to a word i say, my house is a mess, my husband doesn't buy me flowers, he ignores me alot...but in all our imperfections...we are a perfect family. And I wouldn't have it any other way. :)

Friday, July 30, 2010

There goes my baby...

So it's been a long summer already for our family. Football season is right around the corner....and I feel like it never left! Although i am SOOOOOO grateful that my husband is signed with a team right now...(even though they have YET to give us our checks they owe us for well....all of summer) I MISS MY HUSBAND!! I know everyone is sick of hearing it..but I do. he didn't leave for the weekend...or even the week...well not even the month!! I wont be seeing him again until SEPTEMBER!! Yes, you read it right people...september. I will be a single mother of 2 babies for at least 6 weeks. Im considering getting some kind of medication to get me through it (everyone else is Utah apparently takes Prozac...why not me??) hahaha IM KIDDING...or am i?

So in the mean time, me and the babies are here in the OC staying with my parents until final cuts determine our fates for the next several months. I miss Utah...i miss my friends and my family. But moving is definitely a change..and a welcomed one at that. I AM excited that there's so much at our fingertips...but we're literally straddling the line here. I don't mean to sound negative...I'm just being honest. I've decided that I need to be more honest on this blog...I don't ever want to come across like I don't have any worries or concerns because I do! I'm a woman after all.

Here's a bombshell...I've done it before...I've wondered what it would be like if all this time alone led me into the arms of another. (Not considered...just wondered..there's a difference, look it up) I reminisced for a second of how fun it was to start a new relationship with someone. all the butterflies and the excitement of knowing nothing about this person and still being so obsessed with brought a smile to my face. Then I imagined the life without Manase. My kids without their dad. And the worst one, Manase with another woman! Kissing someone else and holding someone else the way he does me...and that stopped me in my tracks. It's like this country song I heard recently...

When I think about cheatin'
I just think about you leavin'
And how my world would fall to pieces
If I tossed your love away
Even when I'm tempted by some stranger
Oh there's never any danger
I just think about you leavin'
When I think about cheatin'

Ha! and It's so true! There's a whole bunch of songs that come to mind when I think about losing Manase(honestly sometimes I wish life were a musical so we could just sing all our emotions out hahaha) especially another called "The one who holds my heart" by Luther Vandross. In the chorus he states "I'd rather have bad times with you, than good times with someone else. I'd rather be beside you in a storm, than safe and warm by myself. I'd rather have hard times together than to have it easy apart." I love it! Sometimes pop icons say what I fell better than I ever could.

So next time you fight with your spouse...and you swear you would be better off without him...seriously think about that. Think about life would be like without him...and I bet you'll be a little bit less angry. Or just be like me and think of how it would be if he was loving someone else...i bet it would make you appreciate him a little bit more. :) So do something nice for that man of yours once in a while...

In case you missed it...i REALLY miss my other half.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mommy day

I don't think I ever really appreciated my Mother until I became one myself. Well, not that I didn't appreciate her, I just don't think I could ever understand the kind of love a mother has for her child until I had children of my own. After having Semisi, and seeing how enthralled I was with him, i started to think of the things I've said and done to my mom that broke her heart(mostly during my teenage years) and the thought brought tears to my eyes. I thought of all the unkind things I may have said to her purely out of anger, or even the things I had said when I was bitter or angry that she never even heard...and then I imagine my kids saying and doing those things to me and the feeling of guilt was overwhelming. As I sat that one day holding this new child in my arms and reflecting on the perfectness of his spirit, it was hard for me to imagine him as a stubborn teen. And by "hard" i mean heartbreaking! I knew how this little bundle I had worked nine long months forming made me melt. I knew how my heart swelled to full capacity at the mere sight of him. I thought of how I felt like I couldn't possibly love anything or anyone else like I loved this baby. I thought of Semisi yelling and fighting with me as a teenager, and thought that I wouldnt be able to help flashing back to that moment when he was a baby, lying in my arms and comforted by me..thats it, just being held by his mommy.

And then I thought of how my Mother feels the same about me and all her other children. I broke out into HEAVY torrents of tears. My heart broke so hard that I practically heard it! And that's when I TRULY appreciated my mother...and really HATED myself. I had no idea of the kind of love my mother felt for me, so when I tried to say things to hurt her feelings as I felt she had hurt mine(so immaturely), there was no way for me to know just how much those words cut her. I had no idea. Then again, I do think that the love a mother has for her child is one that cannot be explained. It's magnitude can only be felt.

Needless to say, my mother is AMAZING. I think of everything she did for me when I was younger, and I'm overwhelmed at the thought of trying to live up it. I don't know how she did it. all I know is that I'm trying everyday to be more like her. I want my kids to know the kind of mother I was fortunate enough to know. I want them to love coming home to a clean house, a cooked meal. I want to make them clothes, and quilts. I want them to love when I make my mom's supo, or corned beef gravy that only mom knows how to make right. I want them to love coming home, because those are some of the things I love about coming home to my mom. I wish I had her work ethic, her creativity, her loving touch. I wish I had her strength, her control, her giving heart, her testimony. I want more than anything to be but half of what she is.

Happy Mommy day, mommy. I love you more than words can say, and I appreciate you even more than that. You truly are my hero and everything I aspire to be. Thank you for showing me the kind of Mommy I need to be for my kids. You are my best friend and I love how our relationship has grown so close. I can talk to you about anything and I cherish the talks we have together. i love you.

Happy Mothers day to all you other Mothers out there. Especially my sister, as this is her first...I know she'll be an incredible mommy. You've always had the biggest heart of all of us, and it really shows when I see you with your new baby. Thank you for loving my babies like they're your own. One of my greatest joys as a mom is when people love my babies. and you and Vaea LOVE my babies...and you have no idea what that means to me. You too, are my best friend.

And also to my sister in law Kristen, who I'd rather call sister, without the in law crap, because she really is my sister in so many ways. Thanks for showing me how to be a great mom. You have no idea how much I wish I had so many of your awesome qualities. Your kids are always so clean and well dressed. They're well behaved, and they love us...and I know that comes from their mom. You're so good about cooking for them, and making them things like the quilts and clothes. You're an awesome mom. Love you guys. :)

Happy Mothers day!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

and the winner is...

After a long four months of waiting, waiting and more waiting...and LOTS of stress...Manase was picked up as Oakland's first UDFA(Un-drafted Free Agent). We're excited but know not to get too comfortable yet. He still has to make the team come September. :) But in the meantime, thank you for all the kind words, warm embraces, and strong support. I know we couldn't make it very far without them.

We're excited to see what this NFL life has in store for us, and we have close friends who give awesome advice and never ending support. Manase has worked so hard up until this point, and that's one of the main reasons I married him, he's one of the hardest working men I know. More than anything, I was so glad to see the relief in his face and even a tear in his eye when he got the call, he could finally breath. It'll be a long 3 months until we head out there...and lots of hard work, but our hearts are full and our sights are set towards the stars. Wish us luck!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Baby shower and DISNEYLAND!!

So my sister Anu is due any day now(she's only 36 weeks but already dilated 2 inches!!) so we planned a little family getaway to California last week. I was just gonna go with one of the babies and leave one with Manase for the weekend, but I convinced Manase to come with us. I figured we probably wouldn't have too much family alone time if things work out for us in the future, so we might as well enjoy each other and getaway before the storm of football stress hits again.

Her shower was super cute! My mom planned it and made all the invites and favors herself! I wish I was as crafty and she is. I loved all the adorable presents and even joked about taking some things for little Leila..haha. I'm so excited for my little niece to arrive...and I'm so excited to spoil her! We have beautiful girls in this family(I'm not biased at all) and I know she'll just follow the trend.

Manase and I bought tickets for Disneyland so we could take him, and my parents have seaons passes too. They had a special going that you could buy one day and come back to the other park another day for free! So Manase and I went early Monday morning to go on the "big kid" rides and my parents brought Semisi later that day. It was a blast..I thought I loved Disneyland before....but seeing the smile on my baby's face and how he lit up about EVERY five heart melted. I wish we lived in California again so I could take them as often as we could.
I strongly suggest, if you ever get the chance, to take your kiddies to disneyland/world...there's nothing better than seeing them soooo ecstatic and full of wonder. It's like a drug! haha

Monday, March 22, 2010

Oh Mister Sun!

We decided to take advantage of the DECENT weather today and took the kiddies to the park. Semisi is a couple months older now than the last time he'd been to a park and he was loving it! He wouldn't even stop 5 seconds for me to capture any pictures. Leila, on the other hand, was not so impressed...understandably so I guess. I'm so excited for her to get older so they can run and play together. Love these fun little family moments!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Semisi def needs a brother

Poor Semisi, aside from his 5 month old cousin Micah, he is SURROUNDED by girls!! yes, nothing but Bow loving, purse carrying, high heel wearing, princess dress adoring, pink nail painted girls! He has two girl cousins, Sela and Sinalei who are his age and then there's Leila. Don't get me wrong, he is a boy through and through, from being OVERLY ROUGH, to playing football, even boxing! But yet, he sees the girls' bows and dresses and wonders why he can't wear them too? So tonight he threw a fit for me to do his hair like I humored him, just for kicks. His Dad wasn't too happy, but there's no harm done!
LoL...I'm totally gonna show these pictures to his little girlfriends when he's a teenager...what else are Moms for?? hahaha

Friday, March 5, 2010

Ear Piercing (duh duh duh)

We did it! I finally pierced our baby's ears...I think it was more painful for me than it was for her...or maybe not. lol

I think they're ADORABLE!! At least I did once the guilt wore off. I swear, I've never seen so many disgusted, disapproving stares in one store...geez! Those people were acting like I was the only mother to ever pierce her daughter's ears despite her loud screams...maybe they had a point. :) She's far too young to remember the traumatic experience anyway!

*Beauty is pain...she's gotta learn young.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Welcome 2010

Alot has happened since I last posted, it's been a very hectic month and a half for my family, so I'll just try to write one or two points about everything that has happened that we've missed.

Dec 12- My brother Duke went to the temple for his living endowments in preparation for his mission. It was a beautiful session and nothing is like waiting in the Celestial room for a new family member to come through. LOVED IT

Dec 19- My sister Anuanu married her boyfriend of a year and a half Vaea Tauteoli. Love em so much...I wish nothing but the best for them and their new little family.

Dec 20-23 Las Vegas Bowl Oregon State vs BYU

We won! We defeated the beavers 44-20. It was an awesome game, sadly Manase's last game as a BYU cougar. They wore the Royal Blue jerseys and Manase scored 2 touchdowns! i was even on TV for a split second! haha We shall miss the good times but are looking forward to the future and what it holds.

Dec 25- This Christmas our WHOLE family spent together. It would be our last as a whole for another two years as my baby brother would be leaving on his mission in the Cape Verde Islands. It was a holiday filled with love and laughter. I LOVE being with my eternal family.

Dec 26- Family coming soon!

Dec 30- We bid farewell to the baby boy in our family. We dropped Duke off at the MTC after breakfast at Dennys. just thinking about this days brings me to tears. I miss him dearly but I know he will be an incredible Elder and will bless the lives of many in Cape Verde.


Manase receives his invitation to the National Football League Scouting Combine. He is one of only 3 fullbacks to receive an invitation. We were very excited to hear this news.

Jan 1, 2010 HAPPY NEW YEAR!

And the past month has been such a blur. Since Leila was born, Semisi gave up his crib for her and moved himself into our tiny queen sized bed rather than his intended sleeping place, the play pen. So we decided to convert our storage room into a big boy room for Semisi, equipped with a big boy bed and all. We'll be decorating it with all of his dad's BYU artifacts, posters, signed footballs, jerseys, etc. We've finished the painting, we're just putting last minute touches on the decor. i'll be sure to post a pic when we're done.

Next on the list...getting him to sleep in his own bed. Fearing the battle, we've procrastinated that day...but it will be coming in the near future! I have many plans for our little family as far as sleeping schedules, bed arrangements, etc. We'll see how all that goes down.

But we are so excited for 2010! As Ive said many times, 2009 was a hard year for us, and we know this one will be filled with many ups and downs as well, but it should be an exciting year nonetheless...

I need to write more but I have a screaming 4 month old on my lap begging for her breastmilk...and I can feel my body giving here's to being better, the new year, and new schedules!