Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Once upon a time...

there was a family of 4: a mom a dad and a son and daughter. Some would say thats a perfect sized family and nicely balanced, but in this perfect little family there was still something missing. That something missing was filled in the early morning of September 26, 1980. This was going to be a special day... a party was planned, invitations were sent out, decorations were set! The baby wasn't due until October 6th (the daughter's Birthday) so that gave them enough time to have a birthday party. I guess this little baby didnt want to miss out on the all fun and decided to join the little family a week and a half early! Born into the Tarayao family 27 years ago today was Kawika Aukai! I wasn't around yet but I'm sure that it was a wonderful day! Happy birthday Kawika I hope you are having the best birthday ever over in Thailand!

Kawika is the 3rd of 4 children. His middle name Aukai means "one who travels by water" and it couldnt fit him better! He has been a water baby his entire life! Grew up swimming and excelled in it all the way from community swim team, to a competitive swim team, throughout high school and college. Growing up behind him, I can remember going to his swim meets and him ALWAYS winning! I was so proud! In high school I could see his name up on the records board, even in recent years, I can still look up there and see his name! Because he frequented the newspaper articles, they started calling him "The flying Hawaiian" and boy did that catch on!

Not only did he excel in swimming but he also played water polo in high school! I guess I can thank him for somewhat influencing in water polo. Kawika loves the ocean! He loved it so much that he decided to work there as soon as he was old enough. He became and Lifeguard Cadet and the next year a Lifeguard for Newport Beach and was Named Rookie of the Year! Does that surprise anyone? Kawika has always been extremely good at whatever he does! Even after graduating and getting a "real job" he continues to work at the place he loves, the beach! Even if it is only on saturdays during the summer season!

He is also an amazing surfer! I can't really thank him in that department... Actually, I look back and wish that he had taken me surfing so I could be that much further along in my own surfing now! Thats ok Kawika, I still love you! And i'm glad we have that in common now and can go on an epic surf adventure together in the future... near future!

So some of my favorite memories with Kawika:

1. When mom and dad would go out and leave gavan to babysit us, we would have our pillow fights or wrestling matches on mom and dad's bed! The best part of that are the names that came out of it: gavan: Andre the Giant, Kawika: MadManBeek, and me: MeekiesManHunter.

2. At one of Kawika's Swim Meets there was this foresty area near the pool and in between events we went and caught these itty bitty frogs. (Not really sure if you remember that Kawika but I do and it was fun)

3. Sharing a room with a little sister may not be that fun especially when she is a messy little sister.... Saturdays in our house were clean up the house days. We couldn't go anywhere or do anything until our chores were done and our room was clean. Kawika had all of his stuff nice and neat in a little corner of the room and would tidy it up in about 5 minutes, I, on the other hand, would spend hours on end cleaning up the rest of the room... because all of my "stuff" took up the rest of the room. (not really a favorite memory but a funny one looking back.)

4. When we lived in the "Green House" We would ride our bikes up to the tennis courts and look for tennis ball that people had hit over the fence, stick them in our spokes and ride back home.

5. We were little pyro's growing up and would tie stuff to the flu opener thing in the fire place and burn it.

6. Swing dancing was ALWAYS a favorite!!! If we were ever at a dance and a swing song came on.... I would always rush to find Kawika!

7. When we were kids, Kawika did an Iron Kids Triathlon and after his first one, I decided I wanted to be like him and do one too.

8. (Not the best memory but a memory) Kawika has had to get stiches 2 times in his life and I was around and saw both times when he got hurt. First time, we riding our bikes, (probably back from getting tennis balls, see #4) his tires slipped on a manhole cover and he flew over the handle bars and landed on his chin. I ran the rest of the way home to get mom. That night he had a little beard on his chin, before he even reached 10 years old probably. Second time, we were at a youth activity pool party and there was a slide. He had been going down it all night and then tried going down head first and flipping at the end, this time he flipped too soon and hit his forehead. again, I ran to get mom.

9. Last time I was visiting California we sat around playing the Ukulele, and he was lovin it! I taught him all I knew.... that didnt take long since I don't know all that much! But it was really fun and a great memory!

10. Also on the last visit, he took me skating... that was AWESOME! We would go down the parking ramps at the UCI parking structure (Late at night so we wouldnt bother anyone) you may have seen my post about that night if not you can look at it, its called the Bomb Squad. Sorry I dont know how to do links yet. but check it out!

One of my favorite pictures of Me and Kawika:

Thank You Kawika for being such a great brother! You never cease to amaze me! Thanks for the memories, the laughs, and the cries! i'm excited for all the memories that are waiting to be made! Happy Birthday!!!

A Picture of the Original Tarayao Kids!

Sunday, September 23, 2007


So sorry about the lack of new posts... we had a sad day and our camera needs to be sent in for repair.... more like replacement. Water got inside and so it no longer works. But we will try and post other things... maybe even some other pictures with our old camera. Just a little update... we've still been surfing, just havent captured it on film, Stuart still goes to class and gets all of his homework done, neither of us has started working yet so pretty soon i'll have another update for you on any jobs that we have. We love our apartment, neighbors, ward, and all of our great friends that we have! Still lovin the truck... ps we have officially named him TANK and will be referred to as TANK from now on. We appreciate all of you who check out our blog and LOVE the comments that you leave! Mahalo! sorry so BOOORING! Check back soon!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Turtle Bay and Pounders....

A Stuart Entry.
looking back on the day we might say the surf was nothing special...these shots are really just a glimps of whats going on in the water everyday here in these beautiful islands...

Here is our friend Brandon just Ripping...

After Surfing Turtle Bay I Met up with Matt at his house. we palyed some ukulele and drank some fresh guava juice (from Concentrate) untill we felt ready to go jump back in the water for a quick session at Pounders.
This spot is just a mile from matts house on the point so if we show up and theres no waves we are hardly dissapointed...not like growing up in Whittier, an hour drive both ways to dirty flat surf...needless to say I'm thankful I live here.

Pounders isnt known for its good waves for surfing, matt showing why, just one of many wipeouts that occur when trying to surf here...bodysurfing much less hazardous...the water is still breaking in about a 1/2 foot of water but at least in bodysurfing you dont worry about all the sharp edges on the's some fun shots...

Here's a few Shots from the Eye's of the wave rider...

I really love this camara...

Monday, September 10, 2007

TVA upgrade!!!

Yeah that's right... its a ceiling fan! We made a nice little purchase at Walmart and installed a beautifully cool ceiling fan in our bedroom! Its perfect and was an easy install with the help of our dear friend Doug. Ok ok... so doug pretty much did the whole thing, I screwed in the metal pieces that the blades get attatched to, and Stuart held some of the screws and handed them to doug when he was actually attatching it to the ceiling. You see doug is an electrician so we thought it'd be best to be safe.

Anyways... we love the little addition to our home!


I know this wasn't from saturdays session but since we didn't get any good pictures of me... i thought i'd post this picture I got in WSSM Women's Surf Style Magazine! This was from last season before we went away for the summer.

Surfing 101

This picture was taken before paddling out to a "Secret spot" after we had already surfed a couple hours at gas chambers. We went from a break with probably 30-40 people, out to a break where the only people out were the 4 of us! It was great! It was a very long paddle and seemed even longer because of the previous session. But we were happy to get away from the crowd. With us we had:

Audrey: My old teammate, roomie and surf buddy!!!

Matt... long time friend of Stuart... always kidding around.

Aww how cute!

Unfortunately we don't have any pictures out surfing due to the fact that it was really good and we didn't want anyone to miss out on surfing to be photographer but below we have pictures from our early session at Gas"ies".



Alright so we had an interesting session where I got out feeling embarrassed about being a girl in the water... no i take that back, feeling embarrassed for all the other girls that were out there (besides Audrey and 1 other girl). Its girls like the ones that were out that morning that give surfer girls a bad name. I'd heard it all before that girls are always dropping in on people but never really saw it because all the girls I ever surfed with didn't do that. But now we have proof.

Below is a nice little sequence of example A: Stuart getting dropped in on...
oh yeah... for those of you who don't know there's a little something I like to call surf etitquette, or the rules of surfing... (I don't know if thats accurate cuz I like to think there aren't any rules in surfing, however I guess there are because in a surf contest if you drop in on someone... even if its a perfect ride and you do something really really cool, it doesn't count.) Ok, so the rule is, the person who is "deeper" or "inside" on a wave has the right of way. Deeper meaning: closest to where the wave is breaking. So to put it simply, lets say you want to go right if you look to your left and there's someone there thats also going to go right... they have the right of way.

Here you see Stuart, and closer to the photographer is this Brazilian Body Boarder lady... She has just committed the surfing sin of dropping in on Stuart.... not cool.

The photography however...

very cool

Here we have Exhibit B: Once again... another girl dropping in on Stuart. This particular girl would drop in on everyone this is the one we got on camera though. but a little side story... later, she dropping in on this other guy but he kept on surfing and she ate it (hehe) and she was yelling at him. I'm wondering if the fall affected her thinking because she was the one at fault here. That one was pretty entertaining because he could care less and she was complaining the whole time she paddled back out. Ok Back to exhibit B: tiny little asian girl with high squeeky voice drops in on Stuart and gets pretty close:

Next we have a view of what surfing should really look like: A beautiful sequence of Matt on a super nice wave... oh and look... no one is there in front of him to mess it up! Enjoy!

That was beautiful! Nice wave Matt! Nice photography Stuart!

Here's a pretty picture of the water: I just like it so I thought I'd share it with you!

Exhibit (what is this 3? C? well you get the point...) This is not me... but it is my wave as you will see in the next couple shots:

Ok call me crazy but... I thought us girls need to stick together! Its one thing to drop in on a guy (really bad behavior) but its a whole other thing to drop in on a fellow female surfer! come on now! These guys out here are catching a million waves, and then there's one perfect wave that come straight to me and this girl decides to drop in on me... I'm on it she looks back and sees me ( I see her see me) so I think she'll get off, but no, she keeps on going and I end up on not quite dry reef but just about a foot of water... so I beat her up in the parking lot after... no no no I'm just playing... but I did hear some guys say that about the brazilian girl pictured above in example A. They were joking of course but I had the pleasure of hearing them say it (she was pretty rude and told this guy not to go if someone else who knew what they were doing was going...ouch)

You can see my arm and the nose of my board on the right hand side of the photo:

As you can see I am deeper... and its not like I'm way behind the wave and wouldn't beable to make the section or anything like that! I'm in perfect position for a great wave!

Sorry for the buttum shot... not the best angle haha.

Oh well... there's always tomorrow... what am I talking about, there's always Today!

Well lets finish on a good note! Here's another great sequence of Matt!

Oooohh Pretty!!!

Hope you enjoyed our day of surfing!