August 21, 2013

Happy Samoan Father's Day

Australian's celebrate Father's Day in September, and the Samoan ward that we were in loved to have big dinner/dances for their parties. My sweet neighbors Polu and Pese Sufia bought Varian and I Samoan outfits to wear to this event. I was so excited and so touched by their thoughtfulness! The ladies in our ward would always come to church in these beautiful "peas" (pronounced pay-uhs, though actually I don't know if I'm getting the plural form of the word right, or the spelling for that matter but I'm pretty sure that's how it is.)

I think I had mentioned to Polu how much I had loved one she was wearing one Sunday and she offered to bring me one. So so generous! The one she bought me was a bright pink and black one and even bought me a bracelet, earrings and a hair flower to go with it.

I painted my nails bright pink for the occasion. (Which for the toes is normal, but I can't stand my fingernails being painted, mostly because I can't stand the moment it starts chipping- but this was a special occasion to get all dressed up.)And I made my traditional (for this ward) candy-lei. She came over before to help me tie on the skirt, it was fun. (Can I mention how much I love having them as neighbors!!!) I realize I'm double posting pictures here, but now you can see the full length version. :)

And then we were off to the party.
I include this picture because it does remind me a lot of those parties. Everyone's content to be around the edges waiting for things to start, or listening to someone speak (it's in Samoan so we really don't understand what's going on anyway.) and there is Jaren in the middle of the gym floor. But I figured that it's enough to keep him quiet and contained in Sacrament meeting but at a party in the gym it's probably fine to let him run around. Hopefully. They'll often have food laid out or snacks on the tables and miraculously none of the other kids seem to touch it and I often would spend the whole pre-party (which there always seemed to be a lot of) keeping Jaren from eating the centerpieces.

So the father's were announced and came in to be presented with candy leis from their families and friends. Above I snapped a picture of Brother Setu, who I've nicknamed the Samoan Santa Clause. He's just so jolly and has white hair and rosy cheeks.

Here is the bishopric from Bundamba ward at the time. Brother Crighton, Bishop Leolaogata, Bro Ski, and Varian or "Aston" as people would call him.
So the tradition was to have all the men sit by themselves and their wives would dish up a plate for them and they eat by themselves. CRAZY!!! Well I think the idea is to spoil the fathers, but in reality it means that I have to leave my two BABIES while I stand in line and dish up for Varin (who would really rather pick his own food) and then go back in line to dish up for the kids and myself. And again at this point I think Jaren was 2 and Reid was 4 months old. And then the whole dinner wrestle with both babies (and nursing) all alone.

To make things even more hectic for us "palagis" (white-ies) is that one of the sisters had a microphone and just talked the entire time in Samoan and then would occasionally shout out, "Aston, table" or some such instruction but this time meaning me instead of Varian. It was a crazy night. But so fun to be dressed up.
(On checking my blog today I was surprised to see this video had loaded. I tried multiple times and had given up and thought I had posted without it. But it's fun to see it there. Hopefully Varian won't mind. :) But I think it's fun to see the father's do a traditional Samoan dance. :) )

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