Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year Everyone!!!

What a funky and fun week this has been...our Christmas was wonderful...full of good cheer and relaxation. This Christmas we got a Wii and "Guitar Hero World Tour" to go along with it, so we've been playing pretend rockstars since Christmas! Too fun! You can play either the drums, guitar, or sing and all of us (little kids and big kids) have been having fun rockin' out in our living room! We haven't got Elroy on it yet, but it is only a matter of time!

Our electronic gaming was dramatically cut off thanks to the state-wide power outage. Being in Kalihi, we ended up having our power out until the middle of the next day. Of course, the first thing we thought of when we realized that it was going to be a while before we had power again was how different our lives are now. For the first time, this was not an emergency for us.

Power outages for us have always been stressful. Eric or I would immediately get in touch with the caregiver on duty, head to the house, assess the situation. In this recent case, Peggy would have definitely been forced to go the hospital since her external battery couldn't have lasted 16 hours. Nuuanu was without power even longer than us. It would have been a nightmare.

But when you are in the thick of it, you just deal with is not until you are looking back that you realize how challenging it was. You just do it. That's how things have been for us for so deal with it because you're on the front lines and there really isn't anytime for wishing things were different. Now being on the other side of all of this, we can truly breathe a sigh of relief and see that the way we were living was not actually normal!

So what did the Chuns do in our first non-emergent power outage? Well, we fired up a game of good ol' "Memory" with the kids. OK, I'll confess, there were also some battery powered lightsaber battles...after all, Eric does have a Lightsaber mounted on our living room wall right beneath our "Maka Makai" Peggy Chun original. Yes, the force is strong in this house. The nerdiness too.

So after the power outage, we packed up our stuff and headed to Volcano, Big Island for a 2 night, 3 day get away at Mata's cozy log cabin. It was wet, rainy, and freezing - just perfect for getting cozy by the fireplace. It was just me, Eric, and the 2 kids...we had such a wonderful time just enjoying the simple pleasures - napping, cooking delicious meals (with veggies from Hilo's Farmer's Market), drinking wine, doing crosswords, playing scrabble, watching was awesome! We even got some yoga and hiking to take the kids on some Volcano trails and through the Thurston Lava Tube.

Again, this was another first for us - our first truly stress-free vacation since our honeymoon (six years ago). In fact, we spent our honeymoon on the Big Island and part of it in Volcano, so this was really a full circle moment for us. It was so foreign to be able to take off on a trip and not feel like we were ESCAPING something. I'm sure Suzanne Maurer can relate this one. For the past few years, traveling away from Peggy's side has felt more like gasping for air, than actually relaxing...don't get me wrong, we've had wonderful travel and quality of life during our time caring for Peggy, but it is different...any breaks we had were like hitting the corner of the boxing ring for a brief neck massage and splash of water before the next round of "Our Real Life".

While we were in Volcano, Eric and I were talking while doing the dishes. I told him, "Isn't this great, being on vacation shows us how we would live if we had no pressures at home - we'd, just do crosswords, cook dinner, go hiking, take naps, do whatever we want" He told me, "Honey, now we can." And that's when it hit me. Those aren't crazy things to strive for - that is NORMAL is just what we haven't had.

I am grateful and relieved when I think about our life now, but I also miss Peggy and in so many ways, I miss the madness. Not the stressful part, not the 24 hour care, not the "tear your hair out of your head" moments with Peggy...but I do miss the culture that built up around the bedside. It is the little things, mostly the laughter in her room.

Today, as I sit on the edge of 2008 and I look towards the start of a New Year and a New Era, I am hoping that 2009 brings its own beautiful feeling that we can all enjoy. I am hoping for a new culture to emerge, one that is just as full of laughter, but without the steep price of stress that we paid for it. May 2009 bring joy, healing, and laughter to all of you. Have a safe and special New Year's! Cheers!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!

Mele Kalikimaka from the Chun Ohana!

What a wonderful Christmas gift we woke up to this morning...we opened the Star Bulletin and saw a full page photo of Peggy and this wonderful article by Betty Shimabukuro:

It was the perfect reminder that although Peggy is not with us this Christmas, she is with us in our hearts today and always.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season.

Here's to 2009!!!


Eric, Kimi, Indiana, Sawyer, and Maka Chun...and Elroy too!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Happy Birthday Pepper!!!

Happy 1st birthday to Pepper Jones!!! We love you, Pepper Girl!!! Have a rockin' birthday and enjoy that yummy cake your super mommy is making for you!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Open House Monday and Tuesday

Aloha all...our sale this past weekend had quite a small turnout. We know that many of you couldn't make it because of other commitments at this crazy time of year, so we are leaving the sale set up Monday and Tuesday of this week (Dec 22 and 23) before we go on holiday for the rest of the week. We will have the house open from 10:30am to 4:30pm.

All of the yard sale type Peggy treasures are located in Peggy's room and artwork is in the gallery room. Beat the holiday rush and mall traffic! Come by and do your last minute Christmas shopping at Peggy Chun Art Studio and Gallery! Hope to see you and wish you a merry holiday season!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Happy Birthday Cian!!!

Happy birthday to Cian! This is a great photo of her with Jen and Granddad. This was taken the weekend of Peggy's luau.

We're setting up for our sale - hope to see you all! Come and join us! Today 11 to 4 and tomorrow (Sat) 10 to 4...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

See you Friday and Saturday!

Hope you are all going to join us Friday and/or Saturday for our Christmas Art & Yard Sale/Peg's Legs Christmas Party! We are gearing up by sorting lots of great stuff...we will also have some vendors coming in with great holiday gifts like jewelry and other goods. Plus, it will be our first Peg's Legs mini-reunion! Fun! Don't miss it!

Yesterday we had power outages in Nuuanu. Sawyer's preschool was out of power, so they had to send the kids home in the morning! So yesterday was not as productive as I would have liked...but they are back up and running today, so I am jamming around trying to get work, Christmas shopping, and sale preparations done...time is a tickin'!

We had some other excitement in Nuuanu...apparently there was an iguana sighting in the neighborhood on Monday - our neighbor on Alika Avenue saw it! He says it is 4 feet long! It is still on the loose so we've been keeping an eye out for him...I can just see Cola dragging that lizard in the house!

OK! Off to sort kitchenware in the kitchen with Pat Gamble, Kelly, and Lolo!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Hey Blog Fans - I'm Back!

Well, my immune system finally had enough with me and I caught the cold I've been running from for the past month...I am not surprised since I've been "burning the candle at both ends" as my mom sleep has been erratic, my stress levels high, the weather soggy, I've had more wine than usual, and I must have kissed and hugged about 2000 people in the past few weeks! It's actually a miracle that I made it this far without burning out!

So I was sick Saturday and Sunday. I hate being sick on the weekend. No, I just hate being sick. I don't like slowing down (you're all shocked, I know) and I just lay there feeling mad that I'm not getting anything done. In hindsight I can see that I did get something done - I got some much needed rest and relaxation, but I would have rather recharged at a spa, not in my bed with a cold.

Eric and I did get to slip out on Saturday night with the kids to go to the Symphony's Peter and the Wolf with Barbra Pleadwell, Jayson Harper, and Bella Grace and friends. It was narrated by Jorge Garcia (Hurley from "Lost")! The kids enjoyed it - Indy more than Sawyer since it was kind of late for him and he was pretty tired.

So we're here at the house getting ready for this weekend's sale. I'm glad I'm on the mend since this is a big week. Not only do we have our sale this weekend, but we also have Indy's Christmas program Thursday night and Sawyer's Christmas Program Friday night. We also will be celebrating Cian's 3rd birthday this weekend. Her birthday is on Friday.

The kids are out of school next week, so this is my only real week to get stuff done before Christmas! These past 2 months have been so crazy. I feel so behind in all my work and so behind in Christmas stuff! I'm still in a whirlwind...still having a hard time feeling grounded.

I know that I still need to post photos from Peggy's services and's on my list! I'll get it to it soon! Wish me health and wellness and lots of energy this week - I need it!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Peggy at Punchbowl

Yesterday, Elroy arranged for a private ceremony to place some of Peggy's ashes in a niche at Punchbowl where Elroy plans to have his own ashes placed when the day comes. We had a nice simple ceremony, led by Clarence Liu. It was just myself, Eric, Elroy, Mike and Putter. It was nice to have a quiet family moment - I think that Elroy especially appreciated this intimate, peaceful moment.

We want to share the location of Peggy's grave site/niche so all can visit. It is at Punchbowl National Cemetery (also known as the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific). She is located in the upper niche area, Court 11 - Wall 0 - Grave # 300-350.

We took the perfect plant to place below her niche. It was a living Christmas fir with a penguin in it! So Peggy! Currently, there is just a temporary placard there. The real engraving will be ready in a couple weeks. Right now it says Peggy's real name "Mary M. Chun".

Both of my grandfather's grave sites are in the same niche area, a few courts away from Peggy. It was nice to visit them yesterday. It is so beautiful up there.

Marvel's Remembrance

Here is Marvel's remembrance from Peggy's memorial service:

Working for Peggy was such a whirlwind of the emotions. She demanded much of herself and naturally the same of those around her. As caregivers we’ve watched her physical body weaken but her soul grow.

Peggy still remained such a compassionate person even though she had the most to overcome. Now looking back at that whole experience I realize that we were all in a race with her, a race for time and closure, hope was always our driving force.

Each caregiver brought their own unique spirit and complimented Peggy’s colorful personality. Some brought patience because without patience there was no foundation, some brought boundaries because without them sincerity could not exist, some brought eccentricity because without it there was no creative spark, but all brought love and without that then Peggy would not have made it this far.

In the Hawaii Pacific University documentary, “To Peggy with Love”, I recalled her saying, “I don’t want to just cease to exist”. For Peggy Chun that could never happen, her existence is eternal in our thoughts, our dreams and our hearts but her immortality will forever be embedded in the memories of all who beheld her and that is her triumph. ALS did not claim Peggy; she embraced it as her cause. Peggy lived with dignity and courage till the end and gave this disease a new face.

In Peggy’s last days there was such a peaceful aura around her as she comforted us all with her "eye love". Peggy had created such a beautiful rainbow out of all of our unique personalities. If Oahu is the gathering place then Peggy Chun’s room is the heart of it all the friendships created there are true and lasting, sewn together with her own hearts thread.

I won’t say that Peggy was a total angel, she could be kolohe, but all her different characteristics were all necessary ingredients in creating her legend. I’m sure many of you, as I had, thought that if anyone was going to beat ALS, Peggy would be that person. We’d walk into her room one day and she’d be there smiling up at us. I’d always dreamed of the day I would see her smile. Well the other day as I sat and thought about it, happy tears streamed down my face, I had finally realized, that I had walked into that room almost every day for the past 3 years and her spirit was always smiling, she had beaten ALS a long time ago.

Eric's Remembrance

Here is Eric's remembrance from the memorial service...

Aloha to Mom

I learned 3 basic truths growing up. One, my mother was a fun loving, creative spendthrift. Two, my dad was a hard working Pake. And three, apparently, according to my dad, I was just like my mom.

What did this mean, to be just like Peggy Chun? Well, to me it meant a lot of things. It meant I had faith in my own creative abilities. When she had an idea, there was never a question of “Can I do this?”, it was always: “Let’s do it! …and we’ll figure out how later.”

She always filled me with confidence, and encouraged me without solicitation. Like if I was drawing something, she would say “Oh honey, you are such a great artist!” and I believed what she said. This kind of self-confidence goes a long way.

Mom had a shameless charm about her. When there was a problem, she could charm the shirt off anyone who could help. But she always did it with love. And with a nudge and a wink, she would acknowledge that she knew it was a lot to ask, but that the reward was always great. She found many co-conspirators this way.

She was shameless in the way that she was not embarrassed by acting on her ideas. She could walk into a room dressed in a penguin costume with no remorse. In fact, pretty soon, the whole room would be in stitches, and probably putting on the other costumes she brought along.

I wasn’t embarrassed by these antics until around hitting puberty. But before that, she was a magical, kid-like figure who could do no wrong. In Elementary school, she would come to visit my classroom one day every year, with boxes of Christmas ornament supplies, and we would spend the day gluing shells and Kukui nuts together, making our own creations. I wasn’t embarrassed. I thought she was the coolest mom around. She wasn’t your normal stuffy adult, she lived the magic of childhood.
In fact, my mom was a big kid to the end. She valued the moment and gulped down the abundance of life with playfulness and disregard, but always with joy.

It is this joy, this love for life, that she will always be remembered. It is her greatest gift to us all. To love and be loved with all your heart.

My maternal grandmother, my mom’s mom, Sara Richard was her greatest inspiration. She modeled herself upon her mom’s exuberance and love for life. In her final days, my grandmother wrote these words:

“Chastity without charity is chained in hell. The same can be said of all the virtues. Patience without love is condescending. Courage becomes stoicism, and church going, hypocrisy. St. Thomas says that the virtues are the habits of love.

Mom drew great strength from the love of her mother, and I can do the same. Am I still “just like my mom?” Well, I am grown now and can see the big picture in life. I can see the dark with the light. But fundamentally, I am what I am because of her virtue. Thank you mom, for giving me this gift. I will miss you.

In closing, I’m sure Peg would ask us to see the beauty of this world all around us. And the next time you look up at the sky and see the clouds, notice that there is more than just grey and white. She would point out all the subtle and beautiful colors that are reflected: the violets and cobalts, the burnt siennas, ultramarines, and of course her favorite: Cadmium Red Light.

Peace be with you mom, Aloooooha.

Monday, December 8, 2008

What a Weekend!

I don't even know where to start. I am writing this from home and the kids (and Eric) are still sleeping. It has been a LONG and wonderful weekend, but it is nice to be sitting here, back in our own home and reality, with a cup of hot coffee and some quiet. We got back home yesterday afternoon after staying the weekend at Hale Pohaku, the beautiful beach house in Waimanalo where we had Peggy's Celebration of Life Luau.

Friday's service was so perfect. I don't think things could have run any smoother. Oh, except that one mistake we made on the program - we didn't have Eric listed as a speaker! Oops! And that is after proofing it twice! The first time we proofed it we sent it off to be printed before Elroy had a chance to look it over and graciously point out that we had left him off of the list of Peggy's surviving ohana. Double oops. Luckily we caught in time before it went to print...and it worked out just fine at the service, Suzanne Maurer ran around before the service letting people know where Eric would speak.

The music at the service was breathtaking. And the church looked so beautiful. I know that Peggy had a hand in the timing of everything because since it was December they had decorated the church with wreaths and other Christmas decor...Peggy would have just LOVED it. All of the speakers, led by the calm and eloquent Chaplain Clarence Liu, were perfect and nailed their presentations. I am hoping that I'll be able to get some of the speeches from everyone and Elroy's eulogy to share here on the blog because they were so beautifully written and very funny and poignant.

The other great news is that Suzanne Maurer arranged for a videographer to record the services, so we will soon have that to share with family who couldn't attend the services and we can have a copy to share at the house. Hopefully all of you saw the coverage both in the papers and on the news. They did a great job of sharing some of the highlights of the day like Malia's singing (with John McCreary on the organ), Jim's "Coincidence" song, Keola and Moana doing "Green Rose Hula", Marvel (and Hanna and Shelly) in penguin costumes, and all the love (and costumes!) that filled the church. I have to also say how proud I am of Eric's speech - he did the most amazing job! Not a dry eye in the house! I know he made Peggy proud up there.

It was so wonderful to see so much family and so many friends, old and new. It was so fun to visit with everyone before and after the services...a reunion of sorts and the mood was definitely light as we kissed, hugged, laughed, and remembered with each other...truly the church celebration that Peggy always wanted.

Then it was off to Waimanalo to let our hair down and REALLY celebrate the way Peggy would! The decorating committee did an awesome job of setting up the yard. Peggy's luau requests specifically said, "lots of twinkly lights" and they absolutely accomplished that!

I said a few words at the luau before Suzanne's pule (prayer). I'll sum up what I said here for those that missed it because we mean it with all of our heart:

The family would like to to express our deep gratitude to the people that made today possible. To all the volunteers who assisted us here and at the church. To Mike Sitch for the use of this amazing house that is so Peggy. To all of the musicians, all of Peggy’s favorites entertaining us tonight. And also to the family that flew all the way to be here to day – Peggy’s dad, Joe, her brothers Peter and Mike, and her cousins Putter and Rip.

And of course, we want to acknowledge our amazing Peggy Chun Memorial Committee who put all of their hearts into planning the service and this luau. Pat Gamble, Conne Sutherland, Pokey Richardson, Julie Percell, Mata Rubinstein, Suzanne Maurer, Lynn Cook, Malia Ka’ai and our dedicated office girls - Karen Lillinoe & Kelly Jones.

When Peggy was diagnosed with ALS, one of the first things she did was plan her service and the luau to follow. I laugh when I think about how excited she was envisioning all the details of today – it was by far the easiest way for her to begin to accept her diagnosis since it was her favorite thing to do – plan a party!

The Committee did such an incredible job of planning a memorial service and luau for Peggy that truly exceeded any expectations – even Peggy’s own! This is above and beyond anything we could have hoped for. I can’t tell you what a gift it has been for them to take the lead on the planning, allowing the family to process the loss of Peggy without the added anxiety of all the work and organization of details that it took to make today possible. Their concern for our emotional and physical strength at this time has been so heart-warming and so appreciated – without them, none of this would have happened…and because of them we were able to fulfill these last (always elaborate) wishes of Peggy’s.

It always struck me as so odd that she planned today with the zest and detail of someone who would be attending the event…but now I get it…this is what she had envisioned…all of us here, celebrating who she was, carrying on her love for life, love for friends, and love for great parties where those two things come together.

And Peggy is here. You can feel her presence, feel her pride, and feel her laughing and loving each minute of this.

At this point we raised our glasses in a toast to Peggy. We counted to three and at the top of our lungs said together, "WE LOVE YOU, PEGGY!"

The rest of the party was spent dancing to Don Tiki (with Jason on the drums), eating the ono Hawaiian food that Peggy would have devoured - especially her favorite - opihi! And of course there was lots of talking and drinking! At about 9pm we broke everything down - we had an amazing group volunteers helping.

There were quite a few of us who slept over and I think I'll just leave it to everyone's imagination to envision what the after-party was like. Let me just say that we all made Peggy proud partying in her honor. Let me also say that the Richards are notorious for their partying skills (and loud voices). And I will graciously leave out any incriminating descriptions of "Legs Gone Wild" since I'm pretty sure our new motto should be "What Happens in Waimanalo, Stays in Waimanalo".

On Saturday, we gathered to spread (some of) Peggy's ashes in the ocean. We were blessed to have Manu join us (the kind man who came to Peggy's services to blow the conch shell) and he led us down to the water with conch blowing and chanting. We were all, of course, in costume. Then Eric, Karen, Marita, and Hanna all paddled out on kayaks. Indy and I paddled out on a longboard and Jen paddled out on another board. We paddled out pretty far and Eric spread the ashes. It was the most beautiful day, so clear, so perfect. Then, just as we paddled back in, Karen and Jen saw a turtle! Karen followed it saying, "I'm following you, Peggy!" It was the most amazing experience!

That afternoon and evening we had more sleepover fun...again, remember our new motto! And then yesterday we had more beach time and then clean up time. In the afternoon, just before we were going to leave, Granddad Joe tripped up the stairs and fell pretty hard face forward. He broke his fall with his right shoulder and was in quite a bit of pain. The brothers and Putter took him to Straub where they discovered that he had indeed broken his arm.

Joe and Peter had a flight to catch at 11pm and Joe did not want to delay their departure, so with the doctor's approval, they decided to fly out anyway. They put his arm in a sling, gave him some meds and a note to request that they get bumped up to first class, then he'll have it looked at when he gets back home. What a way to end their trip!

We saw them before they left. After the hospital, Mike and Putter, Peter and Granddad, and Jason, Jade, and Cian all came over for dinner at our house in Kalihi. They Granddad and Peter went to catch their flight, everyone left, and we were able to get a much needed good night's rest.

Sawyer is up now, so my mommy duties begin. We'll be heading to Alika house soon. Now that the services are behind us, we can focus on the house, our upcoming sale, thank you cards, and Christmas! I'll post again soon! And will share photos soon too. Have a great day!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Getting Ready for Tomorrow and Other Stuff

We've been busy busy busy meeting and prepping for tomorrow's services and luau. Eric and I don't even have the words to express how grateful we are to our dedicated (not to mention super organized and competent) Peggy Chun Memorial Committee. I can't get over how beautifully everything is coming together. And what a party this luau is going to be tomorrow! I know that Peggy is smiling down on all of us with pride and excitement.

Today the tents go up at Hale Pohaku at 2pm and then the decorating committee hits the scene at 5pm. We have so many wonderful volunteers helping out everywhere - at the church, at the luau, before and is amazing!

We've had a lot of visitors and helpers at the house...we are so grateful for everyone coming and helping us deal with the overwhelming task of sorting through Peggy's house full of stuff. Karen and I were talking about it and we are feeling unprepared for all the help...we don't want to turn away help and we know that there is so much to be done, but we are having a hard time finding good and productive tasks for is sort of hard to know where to start. We are feeling guilty because people are coming to help and we just feel like sitting around and hanging out with them instead of working on the house. We feel like we're tricking people into hanging out with us by luring them in asking for help with the house! Ha! That's OK, right?

I think part of our problem is that we are so focused on Friday's services and luau...we feel like once we get through this week then we can really start focusing on the house. Now that we have planned our first yard sale (and Christmas sale/party) we have a goal to work towards.

We have started to clear the back corner (where the couch used to be) for yard sale stuff...and as I mentioned before, you Legs get the first crack at that stuff to see if there is anything that you would like to take. Just be sure to check in with us to let us know what you are taking...just in case something ends up there that is not supposed to be in that section.

This leads me to another announcement. I know that many of you have things that you either left/lost/loaned to Peggy, things that Peggy told you that you could have someday, things that you especially loved, things that mean something to you, things you gave to Peggy that you would like back, etc. I know that many of you might be concerned that we are cleaning and getting rid of stuff before you have a chance to speak out - so, here's what will make things easiest for all of us:

PLEASE EMAIL ME about any items you have in mind. Email me your name, contact number, and a description of the item and the circumstances (you gave it to Peg, she gave it to you, you loved it, you know someone who should have it, etc.). I am compiling an excel spread sheet with all this info so that as we go through the house we can reference it. We will also be labeling things with names as we find things and put them in a certain designated area.

Feel free to offer suggestions of people that might be able to use certain items as donations (i.e., old towels can go to the Humane Society, medical equipment can be donated to MDA). We will do our best to accommodate any requests while also adhering to Peggy's wishes and those of the family.

FYI, all of the artwork, art supplies, business stuff will be going to our new gallery/office location, where ever that may be. Please help us keep an eye out for gallery/office spaces in the Downtown/Chinatown area and also for an apartment/loft for Elroy in this same area!

See you all tomorrow!!! XOXO

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

A few Notes About Friday's Memorial Service

Aloha Peg's Legs...looking forward to seeing you all this Friday at Kawaihao Church and at the luau to follow. For those of you who are helping at Kawaihao, we have parking passes for you. They will be ready for pick up at Peggy's at 10am tomorrow (Wednesday).

We have reserved the first 5 pews of the church for Peg's Legs caregivers and family members. Also, we have been informed by the church that this is a BYOT (Bring Your Own Tissue) event!

Peg's Leg Christmas in Nuuuanu

Aloha Peg’s Legs!

Get your last minute Christmas shopping done all in one place! Artwork by Peggy and others, prints, calendars, cards, cookbooks, The Watercolor Cat book, and more. Plus, check out the household treasures looking for new homes as we begin to plan a move to a new location.

Peg’s Legs Christmas in Nuuanu
An Art & Treasure Sale at Peggy Chun’s

Friday December 19th 11am to 4pm
Saturday December 20th 10am to 4pm

Peggy Chun Art Studio & Gallery
3115 Alika Avenue Honolulu, Hawaii 96817

Most importantly, come and see us because we miss you all! Even if you’ve finished your shopping, just come for the refreshments and socializing. And don’t forget your Christmas costumes in honor of Peggy!

Friends and family are welcome! Mele Kalikimaka!

Email or call 808-595-8434 for more information

Email Problems

Hi all - I have been having some major email problems the past couple days. I have been able to send email but not receive it. It seems to be working now, but if you have tried to send me anything in the past couple days, please assume that I have not received it. Getting no email has been both frustrating AND strangely liberating. Anyways, don't get mad at me if I haven't responded to an email that you sent (yeah, I'm talking to you, Hanna Levitz) since I most likely haven't received it...please resend - thank you!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

We're at home relaxing until we head over to my parents' house for the day. Last night, Indy and I went to the symphony chorus Thanksgiving eve concert...we wore our antlers as directed by Lynn Cook and met up with a dozen or so Peg's Legs, all donning antlers. We were sitting right in the front and when Lolo took the stage with the chorus we stood and cheered. We're not sure if she was surprised to see us or embarrassed by our reindeer antics...maybe a little of both!

The music was beautiful and Indy loved her first concert experience. I confess that Indy, Kelly, and I left at intermission to get some dinner...but I heard from Lynn that the rest of the concert was amazing and that Lolo was indeed happy that we all made it.

Me, Karen, Kelly, Julie, and Lynn made some progress on sorting more of Peggy's stuff. We're starting to put things aside for a yard sale. We plan to get things put aside and then let the family and Peg's Legs go through it all first to see if there is anything that they would like to have before we sell it. We are working on clearing the back corner (where the couch used to be) so that we can make that the "stuff for yard sale" area. We just have to keep telling ourselves to take things a day a time, one step at a time...or else it just gets too overwhelming.

Elroy is quite antsy to see some progress in the house...I think he's having a hard time believing that we are going to take care of it (soon enough). I know how he feels - when you're in the house you just feel like you should be doing something about all the stuff, and yet it is so overwhelming and still emotionally charged. I feel this constant internal tug-of-war between urgency and lethargy, not just at the house, but at my home too.

Yesterday we talked to Marvel on the phone. She's doing well, just processing everything like the rest of us and hopefully getting some well-deserved rest. She's planning to come to the house on Monday to help us sort more crap - oops, I mean, treasures. Karen and I have decided to take Thursday and Friday and enjoy the long Thanksgiving weekend. Then we'll be back in the office on Monday and we'll tackle more of the house with anyone who wants to join us!

This weekend is also Eric and my wedding anniversary on Sunday, the 30th! It is our 6th anniversary and what a significant six it is. Wow. Imagine all that has transpired since we said "I do" in 2002. And what I will say to Eric on Sunday is the same thing that I said to Peggy the night before she passed simple words that capture all my love and gratitude (and perhaps mild masochism): "I would do it all over again".

As the days go by, I feel less anxious about what the future will bring and more willing to embrace the change. While we were in it the middle of it all, it was impossible to envision what life would be like without Peggy. We were all so intertwined and focused. We're finally able to take a step back from it all and see what was Peggy and what was us. I think my relief comes from realizing that the friendships and the bonding in the group still function even without Peggy. The energy, the community, and the culture that built up around her was because of her, but not dependent on her.

I am so comforted so much by this realization...this is what makes me feel that I can take a few days off without worrying that the energy that surrounded Peggy will disappear. I don't need to fan the fire so desperately to keep it from extinguishing...because on this Thanksgiving Day, the thing I am most thankful for is that the Peggy Chun flame is eternal.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


It is a quieter day around here...just me, Karen, and Kelly (Pepper too!) doing work in the office. Ann Weers is also here sorting through linens in Peggy's closets. We're going through Peggy's medical supplies and finding people that can use them. We're working with both Healthcare Alternatives and MDA on finding homes for things. It feels so good to "pay it forward" this way.

I used the quiet morning to finally catch up on all my email...what a huge relief. We've had such a wonderful outpouring of support and sympathy, so many phone calls, emails, letters, is such an amazing experience to hear how Peggy touched people's lives. There are so many stories, so many memories.

We're looking forward to a small Thanksgiving celebration this, Eric, and the kids are going to my mom and dad's house for Thanksgiving. Elroy and the Seglers too. And while the HUGE Peggy-style Thanksgivings have been fun, I'm looking forward to a smaller, more mellow day of Thanks this year. It will also be nice to relax a little before next weekend's memorial services and luau.

By the way, we wanted to make sure that everyone got the invite for Peggy's Celebration of Life Luau following the memorial. We are selling tickets for this private luau to Peggy Chun friends and family and you must RSVP by December 1! Please email me if you didn't get the invitation.

Monday, November 24, 2008

A Beautiful Blessing...

We had a wonderful potluck lunch and beautiful blessing in Peggy's room today. It was so nice to sit around with everyone and talk, laugh, cry, eat, talk, and laugh some more. Marita brought some white sage that we burned in the room to "cleanse the space" (a Native American tradition). Then Clarence led us in a beautiful blessing.

Clarence had a calabash of water that we passed around the room. We each put our "mana" in the water by touching it with our hands as we spoke about what we were grateful for and what Peggy meant to us. Then he blessed us all and the room with the water. It was so beautiful to hear everyone's reflections on Peggy and what each person was thankful for. It was a very powerful and beautiful experience. We also spent a lot of time getting caught up on the memorial plans from our awesome Memorial Committee to whom we are eternally grateful!

As the Nuuanu wind blew strongly through the house today and we bustled around meeting and talking, eating and working, Eric and I were so relieved and so happy that the story doesn't end here.

I think that is what many of us fear, that we are not only mourning the loss of Peggy, but also the loss of the culture and community that has built up around her. As I talk to each of you, I feel like we are all feeling this similar sentiment...we will miss Peggy, yes, but we will also miss the purpose that she gave us to be together.

I think that we need to remember that so much of the legacy that Peggy leaves behind is this amazing Peggy Chun Ohana...the friendships that were forged at her bedside...and while we no longer have the purpose of caring for Peggy, we can have the new purpose of carrying on this legacy of friendship and love...isn't that, after all, what Peggy would want..for the party not to end?!

Saturday, November 22, 2008


We're "cocooning" at home today. I'm writing this from my laptop in bed with the kids as we watch "Mary Poppins". It is storming outside...we can hear the wind and the gushing of Kalihi Stream outside.

Last night we had the Seglers, Camille, Silas, and some friends over to our house in Kalihi for dinner. Everyone ended up sleeping over after much beer, wine, and late night poker. The kids had a blast running around, playing dress up, and watching movies.

Elroy stopped in for a bit. He stayed longer than he ever has at our house. He was so happy and relaxed. Usually every time he comes over he is anxious to get home to make sure everything is OK..he rushes out worried about whether the caregivers and Peggy are OK on their own. But last night he was so relaxed. He even had a beer! He stayed and played with the kids for a while. It was so wonderful to see him like that. He deserves it.

I know how he feels. Today was the first time that I woke up and wasn't worried about what was going on at Peggy's house...I'm always thinking on the weekends about Peggy and the caregivers...and I always have this feeling like I need to cram everything in to my weekend because there is so much to do and so much to manage at Peggy's during the week. I'm so used to carrying around anxiety in the back of head about whether we have Peggy's shifts covered. Today was the first day that I actually turned my phone off. I haven't turned my phone off in 6 years. I've basically been "on call" since 2002.

I'm enjoying being unavailable, but also can't wait to be with people at Peggy's again on Monday. I have this strange mix of wanting to be alone, but feeling lonely. I miss Peggy and the weather is making me feel nostalgic and tired. I also am coming down with a case of the "shoulds" - you know, I should call people back, I should return emails, I should do some work, I should clean the house, I should do this or that...but I don't really feel like doing anything.

I know this is normal and that I should just be easy on myself...I can hear Peggy telling me to play the "grieving card" for as long as I can! She always told me to "use every card in the deck". She'd spell that saying out and we'd have a good laugh when we played the "ALS card" with telemarketers...we'd tell them she was totally paralyzed and that she would NEVER be available to come to the phone and they would just hang up! Peggy got a kick out of that.

So we're laying low today and then celebrating Silas's birthday tomorrow at the Children's Discovery Center...please join us there at 1pm if you're free. Then Monday we'll start another work week at Peggy's. Hope you can all join us for potluck lunch and our hospice meeting/room blessing at 11am. We'll be working this week on more cleaning and clearing and also getting organized for Peggy's services on December 5th.

We had fun watching the news bit last night. We saw it on the 10 o'clock news. We will make copies of that one and Eric will tape the ones from the other night too. The news stations grabbed photos from our Shutterfly page...we got a good laugh when we watched the KGMB piece since one of the photos they selected was of Karen in a penguin suit pretending to put Southern Comfort in Peggy's g-tube! Ha!

Speaking of photos, I've put up some photos from our last day with Peggy and a couple from the morning after. I especially like the ones of Indy and Jade at her bedside...I think they capture the simple grief of children that I spoke about in my previous post...they are sad and then they are not. You can see the photos here Peg's Legs on Shutterfly

And here are a couple of photos of what we've done so far with Peggy's room. We've turned it into sort of a Peggy living room and shrine. It is so nice to just sit in there. It is cozy and familiar, but different enough to ease the loss. We hung Peggy's spellboards on the wall along with the "Pool Rules" sign that Shelly brought over for Peggy's pool bath day.

Hope everyone is enjoying this snuggley day and having a relaxing and rejuvenating weekend. Hugs to all of you.

Silas's Birthday

Just a little note to let everyone know that the original plans to celebrate Silas's birthday today at the beach have been canceled due to the weather! The new plan is to hit the Children's Discovery Center tomorrow (Sunday) around 1pm. Maybe some beach time Sunday afternoon if it clears up...Camille and Silas leave tomorrow night.

Lolo's Thanksgiving Eve Concert




This Thanksgiving, Hawai`i’s most radiant voices come together for “Ho'omaika'i – A Celebration!” – a free community concert on Wednesday, November 26 at 7:30 p.m. at the Blaisdell Concert Hall. Presented by the Oahu Choral Society (Honolulu Symphony Chorus), the family-friendly concert welcomes music lovers of all ages and features classic holiday choral music in a relaxed setting. Special guests, the Hawaii Youth Opera Chorus, join the Honolulu Symphony Chorus and Orchestra for this festive evening that celebrates the inspiration of Thanksgiving. Musical highlights include J.S. Bach’s Magnificat, Benjamin Britten’s A Ceremony of Carols and John Rutter’s Gloria. “Ho'omaika'i – A Celebration!” is also an exceptional opportunity for families to introduce the experience of live, choral music to older children.
No tickets or reservations are required.

PEG’S LEGS (decked out for the holidays) ANTLERS STRONGLY SUGGESTED - pick up at Long's or at Peggy's studio, (these have to be returned per Karen).

7:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 26th.


Friday, November 21, 2008

Hospice Meeting, KHNL

A few of us Legs have been working on Peggy's room today. Linda Imai brought by a crockpot of chicken long rice and Jen picked up some sushi. We moved the couch into Peggy's room with her portrait above it. We've been going through all the medical stuff...the bed and vent were picked up today.

Clarence came by today and we set up a support group meeting here at the house for next Monday, November 24th at 11am. Please join us for this Hospice meeting, potluck lunch, and a blessing of Peggy's room...

KHNL came by and interviewed me today. Check it out tonight, Channel 8, 5 and 6pm.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Birthdays and House Happenings

Today is Silas's birthday! Peggy's sister Camille's son Silas turns 2 today! Happy Birthday Buddy! And yesterday was Andy Yim's birthday - Happy Birthday, Andy!

We're having open house over at Peggy's today...feel free to drop by 10 to 5 today. We're going to try to give Elroy a quiet evening at home for a change, but we'll be around hanging out during the day if you want to stop by.

Tomorrow we are planning to work on Peggy's room. Any Peg's Legs that want to help, please stop by, we'll start at 10am and try to be out of here by 5...

In fact, Karen and I will continue to run the business out of Peggy's home Monday through Friday, 10am to 5pm. We welcome any and all Peg's Legs and friends who want to help us with the house to come by during those hours. Elroy is eager to move to a smaller pad and we are currently looking for a gallery/office space (please let us know if you have any leads!) so we will begin sorting and organizing right away.

We think that it will be a fun and healing process. We are planning to get a big dumpster rented next week and we also are thinking of a possible yard sale. Let us know is you have any ideas or would like to help with anything.

Lee's Article in The Honolulu Advertiser

I'm sure that all of you have already read Lee Cataluna's beautiful piece on Peggy in this morning's Advertiser. If you haven't, you can check it out at this link:

We are so touched by Lee's writing. She did such a wonderful job of capturing Peggy, her life, and especially our last precious days with Peg. What a joy and a comfort to wake up and read such a beautiful and accurate description of everything. As Karen said today, you just want to read the article over and over!

Lee is a dear friend of Peggy's. Peggy loved and respected Lee with all her heart. I know that Peggy is smiling down from the Heavens on her friend and thanking her for capturing her life so perfectly...what a gift Lee has given Peggy and our family. Thank you, Lee...we love you!

Reflections on Our Loss...

I never understood the term "good death" until yesterday. Just as Peggy lived an amazing life, she died and amazing death. Friends, family, and caregivers were in and out of the house all day...We all took turns at her bedside, holding her hand, talking with her, laughing, telling stories. She was very comfortable and very sedated from the morphine and though she couldn't communicate, we could feel her calm presence and sense her peace.

HCA nurses Cory and Cathy were with us all day, managing the morphine and monitoring Peggy. They were so wonderful and comforting. Clarence and Diane from Hospice were also around throughout the day. Also wonderful and comforting. Dr. Davis was also on hand to tend to Peggy and support the family. It was a slow weaning process, just as Peggy had requested. As we neared the evening hours, we could feel Peg beginning to slip away. We gathered around her bed, we sang, we laughed, we cried, we said our goodbyes...and then in true Peggy fashion, she hung on for 2 more hours! That's our Peggy!

Peggy passed away at 9:35pm, surrounded by her loved ones. There was sorrow in the house, but there was just as much laughter and was just what Peggy would want, just what she taught us. There was also see Peggy set free from those tubes and paralyzed body...and onto yet another Peggy Chun adventure.

I am siting here writing this from Peggy's room. I came over as soon as I could get up and get the kids over here. I have the kids out of school today so that they could spend some time over here with everyone and process the loss of their Puna. My parents had Indy and Sawyer last night at our home. It was nice to know that they were happy at home eating well and going to bed at a normal time. I told Indy this morning about Peggy. She was sad and then she was OK. The simple grief of a child. So pure and so beautiful.

Eric is doing as well as can be expected. He stayed here last night...there was some late night processing and decompressing (a.k.a. drinking) that went on here after I left. It was Camille, Jason, Leslie, Karen, Shelly, Marvel, Lisa, Recky...not sure if I'm forgetting anyone...I wish I could have stayed and hung out...sounds like I missed out on a lot of fun and bonding! Let's just say that the penguin suits and electric wheelchair saw some action on Alika Avenue. I'm sorry I missed it all, but at least I'm not hungover and recovering from any "Penguin Follies"!

So here I am in Peggy's room. We put a large portrait of her on her bed, surrounded with flowers and lei. It feels the same as always and yet different. The grief comes in waves - the ebb and flow of Peggy's presence - she's here, then she's not, she's here, then she's not...

I am comforted by the sound of the kids in the living room, Elroy going through the trash, Karen puttering around the gallery, the phone is still going despite the void that Peggy leaves behind. I used to fear the loss and the change that Peggy's death would bring, but I know I know that though we have lost Peggy, we have not lost ourselves, our identity, or our purpose. We are still a family, still an ohana, still Peg's Legs...we did not die with Peggy, but rather Peggy lives on within us.

We love you, Peggy...

Peggy passed away tonight at 9:35pm. This is from the Honolulu Advertiser website...

Beloved Hawaii artist died the way she lived — with courage

Artist Peggy Chun died today surrounded by family. She leaves behind a legacy of familiar and dear watercolor scenes of the islands and inspiring memories of how she lived her life. She is shown here in her Nu'uanu studio June 25, 2002, shortly after she was diagnosed with a rare familial form of Lou Gehrig's disease.

By Lee Cataluna
Advertiser Staff Writer

Hawai'i's most prolific and beloved watercolor artist, Peggy Chun, succumbed today to ALS, known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.

She was diagnosed with the disease in 2002.

As the disease took its toll, she did not allow it to stop her creativity. Always seeing the best in life, she said she was "living with, not dying of, ALS." She continued to paint.

In 2003, when she lost the use of her right hand, she painted with her left. In 2004 a weakened left hand sent the brush to her teeth. When she was fully paralyzed, a computer allowed her to paint with her eyes. "After all," she said, "you don't paint with your hands, you paint with your heart."

Born in Lawton, Okla., Peggy moved to Hawai'i in 1968. She taught school and owned a successful Christmas ornament company. When her twin sister and noted artist, Bobbie Segler, died of ALS, Peggy was inspired to paint. Her work is featured in fine art galleries in Hawai'i and in private and corporate collections across the globe.

Her husband, Elroy Chun, son Eric and a large, loving family have supported her through the years of building her career as an artist and the years of continuing her success against all odds. For six years Peggy was encouraged and assisted in her artistic endeavors by a now nationally famous group of friends and volunteers called the Peg's Legs.

Celebrating an early Thanksgiving with hundreds of friends, Peggy's husband Elroy, said, "Peggy, if we have become more tolerant and forgiving, we owe much of that change in ourselves to you. May Akua prepare your heavenly journey with blessings richly deserved upon taking residence in your new abode. We love and will dearly miss you."

Memorial services will be held on Friday, December 5th at Kawaihao Church. Visitation at 1pm and service at 2pm. In lieu of flowers, donations to "Friends of Peggy Chun" are greatly appreciated. Donations may be sent to 3115 Alika Avenue Honolulu HI 96817.

Mary Margaret "Peggy" Richard Chun is survived by:

Husband: Elroy Chun;

Son: Eric Keala Chun, daughter-in-law Jessica Kimi Chun, granddaughter Indiana Anuhea, grandson Sawyer Kumula'au;

Daughter: Leslie, son-in-law Stuart Streuli, granddaughter Hanalei of Newport, R.I.;

Step-son: Bruce Akoni Yong, wife Briar, step-granddaughter Makena of Santa Barbara, Calif.;

Nephew: (son of Peggy's twin sister) Jason Segler, wife Jennifer, grandnieces Jade and Cian, Honolulu;

Nephew: Damon Segler, wife Desiree, grand nephew Dillon;

Niece: (daughter of Peggy's twin sister) Tina Segler, grandniece Molly;

Father: Joseph Richard, stepmother Sara of Lawton, Okla.;

Brothers: Joseph Perry "J P" Richard, John Richard, Peter Richard of Oklahoma; Matthew "Matt" Richard of Tacoma, Wash.; Michael Richard of Colorado Springs, Colo.;

Sister: Camille Richard Fox, husband Joseph, son Silas of Lake City, Colo.;

Peggy is also survived by the famed Peg's Legs 'Ohana of caregivers who served for six years as Peggy's arms, legs and best friends.

Reach Lee Cataluna at

Article Title:
Beloved Hawaii artist died the way she lived รข•‰ with courage

To view the contents on, go to:

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

More Photos to Share

Our Early Thanksgiving was fabulous! We had over 200 guests! It was the quintessential Peggy party! Just what she wanted! We had so much wonderful food and the party lasted so long (many of us slept over!) that we hardly had any leftovers (except some turkey bones that Elroy made into "jook" (Chinese-style turkey rice soup).

I will let the photos of the party speak for themselves...but some of the highlights of the day include Richard Hardy's blessing, Elroy's speech, Eric's sweet words of thanks to me, Jim Franklin singing "Coincidence", Melody and Dale's musical entertainment, the evening arrival of Karen's alter-ego "Kalena", penguin suit fun, some late night entertainment from Puamana, and so much more!

We spent most of yesterday cleaning up and recovering after the party. Then in the afternoon Peggy's "bath wish" came true! Peggy hasn't been able to take a real bath since she went on the trach in 2003 so this was on Peggy's "bucket list" that she and Marvel were working on...originally we had planned to do this outside, but it was stormy, so we brought the inflatable pool in the living room!

The guys filled it with a hose they connected to the kitchen sink. We put lots of bubbles and hoyered her into the pool. Marvel managed the hoyer, Sonia (who had just walked into all the craziness right at the right moment!) ambu-bagged Peggy so that we could disconnect her from the electric ventilator, Jason sat in the pool to support Peggy, and Jen got in to help too. Later Shelly jumped in too with all her clothes on!

We could tell that Peggy loved it. As Marvel said, she kept giving everyone those eyes that say, "Thank you. Thank you." We asked Peggy a couple times if she was ready to get out and she kept saying NO!

Check out photos from both the Early Thanksgiving and Peggy's Pool Bath here Peg's Legs on Shutterfly

This morning is relatively quiet. I have a few moments to sit in the office and catch up with work. My inbox is overflowing, my office mail box is overflowing, and I'm falling behind in all my office work. I know that this is to be expected, but I'm so uncomfortable being so behind and unorganized.

I do feel good that I was able finally able to pry the kids out of here yesterday afternoon (we had all slept over after the party and I took them out of school yesterday since Indy was exhausted and Sawyer has had a fever). So I got to take them home, feed them a healthy dinner, give them a good bath, got them to brush their teeth extra good, I clipped their nails, and even gave Maka a bath! Then we all went to bed at 7pm! It was such a relief for me to get them taken care of and it was so good to get a good night's sleep.

I dropped Indy off at school this morning, but Sawyer still had a fever last night, so I left him with Eric and Damon (who slept over at our house last night). Eric is at home getting some work done and Damon is hanging out with Sawyer...what a relief for me to be able to get some stuff done here without the kids around.

So, as I was saying...things are quieting down a bit, which is a very good thing. Karen says that today is Peggy's Christmas we're all wearing antlers and santa hats and playing Christmas music...we'll continue to keep everyone posted...

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Another Quiet Moment...

I'm home tonight after a big day at the Hanahauoli Ohana Fun Fest. It was Indy's school's fair and I worked the Pony Rides this morning. Eric and the kids met me there along with Camille and Silas, Matt & Marlene Richard, Jason, the girls, and Damon. Silas, Indy, and Sawyer all rode ponies. The kids all got face painting and spray painted hair. It was a fun way to spend the day. The kids came home for a big nap and I popped over to Peggy's just for a bit and saw a few of today's visitors.

This afternoon Eric went to go pick up Peggy's daughter Leslie and baby Hanalei. He took them over to Peggy's house to meet the family. I got a phone report from Hanna that it was going great. I'm at home tonight recharging. My mom and dad came over to hang out and help me with the kids and our house. I wanted to get the kids bathed and to bed early since they have been having a lot of late nights and tomorrow is a BIG day.

I have uploaded more photos from the past couple of days. We've had so many visitors and so much going on, I think I will let the photos tell most of the story, but I'll briefly describe some of the highlights...

Thursday afternoon the art therapist from Hospice came by and did a hand-cast of Peggy's hand and also of Indy holding Peggy's hand. She left us with the finished sculptures...really cool...

You'll see in the photos that we have more Richards in town...and Damon too (Jason's brother). Thursday night Linda Imai dropped off a delicious lasagna (and salad and bread too) that we all devoured! It was so good! Thanks Linda! That night we also had a visit from Kapono who came and did lomi lomi massage for Peggy.

Yesterday was a BIG day at Peggy's. Lots of visitors, but of course the highlight was the visit from 36 Holy Trinity Students (and a bunch of chaperones). They came by trolley to Alika Avenue and set up their band equiptment in the living room. The band played a few numbers and then all 36 kids piled into Peggy's room and sang to her. They did a bunch of songs like, "You Lift Me Up" and "Time of Your Life". They also read poems to her and letters that they had written. They are such amazing was so wonderful to view this experience through their young eyes. Thank you to Shelly for setting this up...what a gift for Peggy...and also for the children.

Last night we ordered in Greek food and hung out at Peggy's. The Lewis family arrived yesterday and also JP Richard. The kids all had fun playing with the Polly Pockets that they got from Jett Lewis. We also enjoyed a few precious moments around sunset time playing with the neighbor's 2 ENORMOUS English Mastifs (big dogs).

Looking forward to tomorrow's Early Thanksgiving. I'm glad I'm getting a bit of downtime before all the fun. We have over 130 RSVPs and you know there will be even more than that! That's a Peggy party for ya! She's gonna LOVE it!

See the latest photos here Peg's Legs on Shutterfly

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Quiet Moment at Home to Relax and Reflect

I'm home this morning so that I can catch up on laundry and computer is nice to get some alone time. We've been at the house so much lately and I realized that I needed to balance it out with some quiet time at home. Eric took the kids to school for me this morning and then went surfing which was great for both of us. The kids didn't do well with the change of routine, but kids are resilient...they will get over it.

I know myself well enough to know that I need this time away from "Peggy Central", but it is difficult to pull myself away from the house. I have this feeling like I don't want to miss anything! It has been so amazing everyday at Peggy's. We have had so many wonderful visitors, great conversations, lots of laughter, lots of healing tears. It is such a special time...I have been journaling and taking photos furiously because I feel like I don't want to forget a second of it.

Yesterday's meeting at the house was wonderful. Clarence, Dr. Faran, and about a dozen of us met in the living room. The feedback that I have been hearing is that it is "just what people needed".

Peggy's brother John left last night. Today, her sister Camille, brother Matt & his wife Marlene, and her nephew Damon all arrive. Her brother JP arrives tomorrow. We also just got the wonderful news that Peggy's daughter Leslie and her new baby "Hanalei" will be coming on Saturday.

We are getting excited for Sunday's early Thanksgiving. We have at least 100 RSVPs! My mom has been doing an amazing job of managing all the RSVPs and potluck contributions. If you haven't RSVPed yet - you better do it! You don't want to tick off my mom!

Our friend Jeff (and a set up crew my mom arranged) will be setting up the tent and tables outside on Sunday morning. I also asked Jeff to set up a bouncy castle for the kids. Thought they could use some fun! We also ordered a bed from Hawaiian Islands Medical so that Peggy can be in her bed under the tent which is way more comfortable than her wheelchair...we did this for her Enchanted Forest Birthday Women's Party last year and it worked great. The bed was delivered today...we decided to rent it for a week since there have been numerous slumber party requests!

I had the idea that I'd like to create a roster of all the Peg's Legs and make copies for everyone...we may try to collect current numbers, addresses, etc. from people on Sunday. That way everyone can always keep in touch with each other...

It is so hard to capture everything that has been going on. I have been meaning to share that last Friday, Catholic Bishop Larry Silva came and gave Peggy her last rites, also known as anointing of the sick. I know that this was a great comfort to many of her Catholic friends and family members.

I think I'll let our latest photos tell the rest of the story...enjoy them here Peg's Legs on Shutterfly

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Support Group Meeting Tomorrow

Clarence Liu will be coming over to Peggy's house tomorrow (Wednesday) at noon for another Peg's Legs support group meeting...this time in the living room at Peggy's. Please join us.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Puking for Peggy!

It was the best of was the worst of times. OK, it wasn't the worst of times, but we did fill over 20 barf bags between us all on the way over to Maui on the Superferry yesterday! But I really am getting ahead of myself...let's start at the beginning...Saturday night's Smores and Pajamas party! Jason did an awesome job of getting the party started...he borrowed this awesome above ground fire pit from his neighbor and fired up the grill. We grilled, ate, drank, and made Smores in the backyard! So fun. Shelly brought her guitar and I hear that there was singing and talking all fact, Mata and Shelly slept over and pretty much stayed up all night. Don't expect to get much sleep at a sleepover if Shelly Mecum is your bed-mate! Ha!

Sunday morning, Marvel came over before sunrise to get Peggy up in her chair and out the door by 5:45am! Adrienne, our faithful driver and dear friend, accompanied us on this adventure! We all met at the Superferry around 6:45am...there were 17 of us - me, Kelly and Pepper, Rhea, Kelsey Sears, Martha Torney, Fortuna, John Richard (Peg's bro), Nurse Cory and her Mother-in-law Joan, Ania, Betsy, Shelly Mecum, Mata, Adrienne, Marvel, and Peggy.

Let's just say that our visions of this trip were a bit different than what transpired. I think we all pictured ourselves partying and laughing, gaily sailing with Peggy, a heart-warming "Make a Wish" dream come true. It was definitely like that for about 45 minutes while we waited to leave port. Then we set out to sea. At first it was OK, but within 20 minutes, we all started to feel it. Some of us moved to the middle of the boat to see if it was better. Some tried to get air outside on the deck. Cory curled up on the ground. Kelsey and Shelly were uncharacteristicly silent. Fortuna disappeared.

Word started to spread around about who had vomited. We were dropping like flies. Thankfully Peggy and Marvel did fine. Martha too. And John, Betsy, and Mata did pretty good too. It began to mellow out in the middle and so most of us reconvened around Peggy. We laid around playing trivial pursuit and then even more fun...Peggy Chun trivia...the whole ship was clearly feeling it...the amazing Superferry staff rushed around handing out soda crackers, gingerale, and big plastic biohazard bags to put our barf bags in...We were doing pretty good and then it started again...we filled more bags.

By the time we got to Maui, we were all puked out. Some went to get air. Kelly and Pepper went to Burger King. It was just so hilarious that we weren't even going to do anything on Maui, just turn right around for more.

Thankfully, our kolohe (rascal) Mata had planned a surprise for Peggy. The night before she had arranged for Kapono'ai Molitau, son of the late Kumu John Lake, to come on board the Superferry to see Peggy. While we were docked for 45 minutes in Maui, he came on the ship and did a beautiful pule (prayer/chant) especially for Peggy at this special time in her life. It was very moving and surreal. It brought tears to our eyes and I think that the only thing that kept us from totally breaking down was the fact that Peggy was dressed as a penguin!

The ride back to Oahu was thankfully much smoother. The Captain and the First Officer were so wonderful and they kept coming and checking on Peggy and all of us. On the way home, they took us by Kalaupapa (something they do only 10% of the time, weather/sea conditions permitting). We rolled Peggy up to the window to get a good view of Mokokai and Kalaupapa...there was a beautiful mist falling down in the mountains of Molokai. Betsy said it best as we passed by the mountains and neared was so "majestic".

So, not the day we had envisioned...but if there is one thing we've learned all these years, you can plan all you want, but sometimes life has something else in mind. Even though I personally filled 2 bags, I wouldn't have missed sort of felt like laying around totally hungover with great friends after a really great party...a pretty appropriate analogy I think. It definitely was an adventure none of will forget...and that was the goal, after all.

Check out our photos from the Superferry (and some others of recent visitors and our Smores and Pajamas night) here Peg's Legs on Shutterfly

Friday, November 7, 2008

Stolen Car Alert

FYI - last night the night nurse, Eric, had his car stolen from in front of Peggy's house sometime during his night shift! So crazy! His car was parked right in front of Peggy's house and he even had a club across the steering wheel. Apparently someone stole it, took some parts, then left it in Waikamilo at which point someone had it towed by Ace Towing. Weird.

Anyways, if you are planning to do an overnight shift or stay overnight, please feel free to park in the driveway instead of the street. We don't mean to freak anyone out, it was probably just some young kids looking for cool car parts, but it still sucks. We did let the neighborhood watch person know...

Smores & SuperFerry!!!!!

Come one come all to our Smores & Pajamas Camp-in this Saturday night, November 8, at 6pm at Peggy's! We are working on fulfilling some of Peggy's wishes...guess you could call it her "Bucket List". One of them is that she has always wanted to go camping and have a bonfire...she used to love camping and singing songs around the campfire. So we're instead of camping out, we're camping in! So bring your pajamas and plan to sleep over if...

You want to participate in Part 2 of "Project Bucket List" which is taking Peggy on the SuperFerry to Maui! Yes, you read that correctly - Peggy has ALWAYS wanted to go on the SuperFerry so we are working on making this dream come true! The SuperFerry leaves at 8:30am on Sunday morning, November 9. We have Dr. Davis's approval and Cory is coming with us! Our cab driver, Adrienne, has said "yes" too and is coming along for the fun!

So...if you want to join us YOU HAVE TO CALL ME RIGHT NOW!!! We're working on a group rate, but it will probably end up being about $100 a person round trip. Let us know - we need to know right away.

Are we crazy? Yes. Sigh. Oh, the things we do for Peggy Chun...

Great Meeting!

We had a wonderful meeting at Hospice Hawaii last night. I'd love to hear feedback from others on how they feel it was and what type of further support we can arrange. It was very cathartic and heart-warming for me personally. We had a great turnout - see the photo above! Eric and I just feel so overwhelmed by all the love and know that we are all going through this as a group is so comforting...and such a relief.

We've had so many wonderful visitors. As I sit writing this right now, I can hear Jim Franklin playing guitar and singing at Peggy's bedside...I'll blog more soon about all of our visitors and share some photos..we also have some big plans manifesting for the next couple weeks..stay tuned...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Tonight's Meeting

See you all tonight at 6pm at Hospice Hawaii. And thanks to the amazing Suzanne Maurer, Jan Hanashiro, and Joyce Nunokawa, food/drinks will be provided! Thanks guys!!!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Early Thanksgiving Celebration

Please join us for our early Thanksgiving celebration at Peggy's on Sunday, November 16th at 2pm at Peggy's house - 3115 Alika Avenue Honolulu HI 96817

Our early Thanksgiving will be a potluck event. My wonderful parents have offered to manage the RSVPs and planning for this event. Thanks mom and dad!!!

If you can join us, please RSVP to my mom, Willow Morton, by email at - RSVPs are appreciated as soon as possible so we can get a handle on everything...Please let her know how many people will be coming and what dish you would like to bring.

We are looking for at least 5 people to do turkeys...and if you have any question about what to bring, just touch base with my mom who will have a master list of what everyone is bringing...we'll also be needing papergoods, cups, etc. and help with set up and clean up.

If you have any questions regarding this event, please direct them to her...

Thank you and hope to see you all on the 16th.

Go Obama!!!!

Hooray for our new president-elect! Peggy is no doubt thrilled over last night's victory. We know she's breathing a sigh of relief knowing that Obama will be at the helm soon.

We've been having a wonderful time at Peggy's. We've had tons of visitors. Lots of laughing, crying, and reminiscing...We've had people reading to Peggy, drinking wine, telling jokes, sharing stories, talking politics, reading dirty emails...and we know Peggy is loving it all!

Karen has been busy decorating the house - we are speeding things up and bringing Thanksgiving and Christmas early to the Chun house! I'll be sending more info soon regarding our early Thanksgiving celebration...

Just a reminder that tomorrow night, Thursday at 6pm, we are having our Hospice Hawaii Support group meeting at their offices. Please join us.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Online Calendar of Visitors

Thank you so much to all of you for all the loving calls and emails. Your kind words and support mean so much to all of us.

I have created on online calendar that you can all see at the following link

Mac users can subscribe to this calendar in their ical programs.

I've put on the calendar some scheduled visits and also mainland visitor travel dates. Many of you are asking the best time to come. Please take a look at the calendar to get an idea of what the days are looking like.

You are welcome to drop by without scheduling a visit, however, please take a look at the calendar first to see if someone might have some scheduled private time with Peggy before you come.

HOWEVER - if you can't check the calendar or you just happen to be near and want to stop by, please just come over! This is the time! You know Peggy - the more the merrier!

Please email or call if you would like to be put on the calendar.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Important Update

Aloha Peg's Legs, family, and friends,

We have been trying to talk to many of you in person or by phone, but we really wanted to share this update with everyone as soon as possible. Peggy's circle is so large and she is loved by so many. Please forgive us if we haven't yet had the chance to talk to you directly.

As you know, Peggy's communication has been declining over the past few months. We are now at a point where she can no longer effectively communicate. We are down to "yes" and "no" communication, but even confirming yes or no is uncertain. Peggy still has eye movement, but it seems as if now Peggy is having trouble controlling her eye movement.

When Peggy could communicate, we had many discussions about her wishes. Peggy's wishes were always that once she could no longer effectively communicate, she would like to be weaned from the ventilator. Dr. Davis came in on Monday for an in-person assessment. It is his feeling and the feeling of the core group of family, nurses, and caregivers, that it is time to call family and move ahead with Peggy's end-of-life plan.

Dr. Davis asked Peggy if it is time to call family and she said "yes". He asked if it is time to move forward with her plan and she said "yes". It is a blessing that we could read her response to these questions.

We have begun to call family and Peggy's very large extended ohana. Peggy's wishes were that we call and email EVERYONE and let them know what is going on. She wanted us to give friends and family a couple of weeks to come and visit if they choose to.

If you would like to come visit Peggy, now is the time. It is a blessing to have a time line like this - not many people do. Peggy's wishes give us this gift of time.

I know that many of you will have questions, so please don't hesitate to call me. Please also talk with each other and support each other during this time. It is such a blessing to have a large ohana like ours - we can support each other and truly create a beautiful "rest-of-life" care environment for our Peggy.

It was always Peggy's wish to die in her home surrounded by tons of friends and family. Peggy may not be able to spell it out, but I know that if she could, she would be saying, "Celebrate me! Love me! And make it a party!"

This is a time to spend quality time with Peggy and each other. Come and hang out, share stories, hold Peggy's hand, cry, laugh, or just be "present".

Some family members are planning to make the trip out here in the next couple of weeks. We are working on an early Thanksgiving celebration at Peggy's. The tentative date is Sunday, November 16th. We hope you can all join us.

You can help us by talking with each other and sharing with others that you think would like to come and visit. If anyone would like some one-on-one time to connect with Peggy, please let me know and we can arrange that.

Hospice Hawaii is on hand to support us. We have scheduled our first support group gathering for our Peg's Legs next week Thursday, November 6th at 6pm at the Hospice Hawaii Office at 860 Iwilei Road Honolulu HI 96817. Phone number is 924-9255.

We really encourage you to join us for this meeting. Please RSVP to me by phone or email. We will be scheduling other group support meetings over the next few weeks as well.

With love,

Kimi and the Chun Ohana

Photos from Halloween

We've put our Halloween photos up on Shutterfly. Check them out here Peg's Legs on Shutterfly

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Halloween This Friday!!!

On a lighter note...Please join us for Halloween this Friday at Peggy's house! Nuuanu is the best neighborhood for trick-or-treating! Lots of Halloween spirit! Come drink, eat, and pass out...candy with us. We'll start around 5 or 5:30 or so I think...feel free to bring a ghoulish dish or some spooky concoction to add to the mix.

Remember - this year our theme is "Batty"! We were inspired not only by the fact that we are all indeed "going batty" but also by Indy who decided to be "Stellaluna" this year. See photo above if you don't know who this fabulous fruit bat is...

Email Me Info for the CDC


The CDC needs to collect the name, birth date, and a contact number for each person that has cared for Peggy in the past couple months. Please email me this info, so that I can compile it for the CDC. Thank you.

IMPORTANT Request from the CDC

As you all know, a few weeks ago, Peggy's urine/stool sample tested positive for Salmonella. She took the antibiotic Bactrim and tests show that she is now clear of the Salmonella. That's the good news.

Cases of Salmonella must be reported to the Center for Disease Control and we have done so. I have been talking with the CDC about Peggy's case and they tell me that they need to know HOW Peggy contracted the Salmonella. While we think that most likely it came from a contaminated juice bottle in the kitchen fridge (I've since cleaned/disinfected the fridge), there is a chance that it could have been passed to Peggy by a caregiver.

The CDC has asked that all of Peggy's caregivers be tested. Even if you are not having symptoms, you could be a carrier and contagious to Peggy and others. If this type of Salmonella is in your gut and you are a carrier, you need to be treated by antibiotics.

The CDC says that anyone who has cared for Peggy in the past few months, both primary and B caregivers (anyone who has helped lift her in the bed, taken out the trash, etc.), should go to their doctor and ask that a stool culture be taken to test for Salmonella.  The MD can either take the stool sample at the office or have the caregiver go to the labs to do it. The labs must have an order from a physician in order to perform the test. 

Each insurance is different according to how much of it they will cover, so the caregiver should contact the insurance company to see how much of it they will cover.  However, this is a requirement for the caregiver to take the test.  Health care workers that are carrying Salmonella or other such bacteria in their systems are at-risk to the individuals they provide care for.

If you do not have insurance or your insurance won't cover this expense, please let me know and I can talk with the CDC about having you go directly to the CDC lab.

I know that this is a pain in the ass and I'm so sorry. However, I have spoken at length with the CDC and they stand firm that we need to take care of this and report back to them ASAP. Dr. Davis and HCA also feel strongly that we need to comply with the CDC request just to be on the safe side for Peggy's and all of our safety.

I'm sure many of you will have questions...please don't hesitate to email or call me. Thanks!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Peggy Chun, Inc. Needs a PC!!!

Last week our PC in the back office broke for good. We had been having trouble with it over the past 6 months and it finally was time. Our computer repair guy told me it was "time to let go"! Ugh.

So...we are putting the call out to anyone that might have a PC they would like to donate or sell to Peggy Chun, Inc. We need a PC (or a Mac that can run Windows) to run our payroll on-line and to run Quickbooks for our company. We can't function without one!

Please spread the word! Thank you!!!!

Spooktacular Success! Check out our Photos!

Aloha all! Our Spooktacular Picnic was a wonderful success despite the STORMY weather! BIG mahalo to all of our fabulous guests, vendors, and helpers who braved the Nuuanu rain to picnic and party with Peggy! I have put my photos from the day up on our shutterfly page - check them out here Peg's Legs on Shutterfly

Monday, October 20, 2008

Original Surfboards

There is a man that we know that owns the original "Surfboards". Circumstances are such that he has to sell it and so he has it listed on Craigslist. He has offered to give 20% of the sale to "Friends of Peggy Chun", so please spread the word!

Here is the link


Update on the bedsore...Cathy came by and did a tele-med doc visit with Dr. Davis. He says we should keep the boot off and keep the area uncovered for a while. We have it elevated on a towel so that it is not touching anything. He is planning to come and do a face to face doc visit with Peggy in the next day or so.

We are still looking for a Spooktacular B for our Spooktacular Sunday this coming Sunday 10/26. Please call me or email ASAP if you can be the B from 10 to 2.

Tons to Share

I have so much to share since my last post. Seems like it has been a whirlwind of activity. First of all, last Wednesday we had a very special visitor thanks to Lynn Cook. Raiatea Helm, Hawaii's Grammy winning vocalist, came by to sing a few songs for Peggy while strumming along on her ukulele. She has a voice of an angel and is the sweetest person. She brought with her some of Hawaiian Host's premium Christmas Medley chocolate macadamia nut gift boxes which include a CD sampler of 3 of Raitea's songs. She graciously autographed Elroy's gift box for him!

Speaking of Elroy, he is back to his healthy self again and busy as ever! Elroy's sister Wilma and the Yim side of the family has been in town visiting from California. You'll see a photo below of all of us from dinner the other night.

Friday was Indy's 5th birthday. I picked her up from school and brought her to Peggy's house. Everyone was hiding in Peggy's room and we opened the door and they all yelled, "Surprise"! She was speechless! I asked her later if she liked the surprise and she said "Oh yes! That was a good idea. But I was in shock!"

We had a great time eating cupcakes and opening presents. The big hit of the day was a large stuffed white tiger from Peggy. The kids went crazy for it! See photo below of the girls riding on it. Indy has named it "Tigey" and it sleeps with her every night. She also likes to put a leash on it and pull it around our wood floors with Sawyer riding on it.

Saturday, Rhea and I got up early to go to go do the Vi Jones Medusky MDA Adventure Trek and Run at Kualoa. It was so much fun and the t-shirts with Peggy's image of the Koolaus turned out so great. They gave one to Peggy that we plan to turn into a dress for her. We saw a few Peg's Legs there - Pat Lokatos, Melody was a great way to start the day (but those hills were no fun to run!).

Saturday night we had a little birthday party for Indy and my dad (they share a birthday) at my mom's house. We did the "October Fest" menu from this months Martha Stewart magazine. The big hit were the home made pretzels. So good - especially with honey, mustard, and (sorry, Martha) Cheez Whiz!

On Sunday, Karen and I checked out the Silpada Jewelry sale at Bobbie and Margaret's place. It was fun and the great news is that Nancy from Silpada will be coming here to show the jewelry at our Spooktacular sale so you can all check it out. Bobbie and Margaret's house is so cute and it is a total Peggy Chun gallery! They have Peggy's stuff everywhere!

So back in the office today. Peggy just had her morning bath. Lisa noticed that Peggy's leg has a bedsore again, probably from her white boot brace. It is on Peggy's right ankle. It is a golf ball size lump, very hot to the touch, but not an open sore. Cathy will be by sometime today to take a look at it.

Karen is decorating for Halloween today and we will be spending this week getting ready for our Spooktacular Sunday! Enjoy these photos below - by the way, the last photo is of Indy in a "Snow Princess" cloak that my mom MADE her for her birthday! Isn't it awesome?!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

One More Request!

Forgot to mention that we also need a "B" caregiver from 10am to 2pm on our Spooktacular Sunday 10/26.

Looking for Some Spooktacular Volunteers :)

We are looking for volunteers to help with sales at our Spooktacular picnic/shopping event here at Peggy's on Sunday October 26th from about 10:30am to 2pm.

We are also looking for some donations for a pupu table and also for a dessert table. We're looking for little munchies that we don't need utensils for...let us Kimi or Karen at the office 595-8434 if you have questions. Thanks!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Hawai‘i’s Education & Government eWaste Disposal Days 2008

This is so cool I just had to share...The University of Hawaii is sponsoring this year's Education and Government eWaste Disposal Days. This is a program that helps reduce pollution through earth-friendly disposal of your unwanted end-of-life electronics in an environmentally safe manner, regardless of the manufacturer, free of charge.

Schools, small to medium businesses and non-profits can dispose of waste from October 20th thru the 24th. Visit the website below for more info and disposal sites.

Even cooler - this program is open for Hawai‘i residents who wish to dispose of personal eWaste on Saturday October 25 from 9:00am to 3:00pm. Residents may drive in to one of seven drop off locations on The Big Island, Kaua‘i, Maui, or Oahu to recycle their personal end-of-life electronics.

Please check out for more information! What a great opportunity to get rid of old computers, cell phones, and other electronics in a way you can feel good about! See the web page for a complete list of acceptable items! And spread the word!

Peggy's Communication

Yesterday, with the help of Marvel, Lolo, and Kelly, we all tried to spell with Peggy. It took the four of us to really verify whether she was spelling yes or no. We got about a sentence spelled out together, although later when we confirmed it with Peggy she said that she didn't say that, so we're not sure. The communication has become very challenging. She has definite movement in her eyes, but confirming yes or no is often uncertain. There are times when her yeses look very clear and definite.

I took the opportunity to have another discussion about Peggy and her quality of life, trying to deduce from yes and no questioning whether she is still happy with her quality of life. Also, given our financial situation, there may be a need to scale back some of the services and level of care that we have always had. As always, I want to keep Peggy informed about where things are at and allow her to be a part of the decision making process regarding her health care.

We seemed to be getting yes and no answers, but there was a lot of contradicting and confusing responses. We think that she responded that she is satisfied with her current quality of life, but need to follow up with more conversations to be sure.

I told Peggy that we will continue to have these conversations over the next few days. I wanted to share all of this with you so that everyone is in the loop of where things are at. I know how hard is is to communicate with Peggy and I know how hard it is to know whether or not she is content, but you all are doing an amazing job. As I've said before, you know her best and caring for her based on what she used to like and ask of us is exactly what we should be doing right now.

As always, I will continue to update all of you on Peggy's communication and emotional state. The one thing I am sure of is that she loves all of you and truly enjoys the laughter, warmth, and joy you bring into her house everyday.

I have a meeting with Clarence from Hospice next week and we will be discussing the format and dates of some support group meetings and other support for all of our caregivers. Please come talk to me if you have any questions, comments, concerns, or just need to talk. I'm here for all of you and I am so grateful for the strength you all give to me. Thank you.

Upcoming Parties - Indy's Bday and Silpada Jewelry Party

Just coming up for air after our LONG weekend...was at Peggy's yesterday catching up on work and getting ready for our Spooktacular Picnic and also Indy's birthday this coming Friday, 10/17. If you are planning on coming to Indy's surprise party at 3pm on Friday, please drop me an email or call me to let me know...I'm trying to get a headcount for cupcakes! I will be bringing her by between 3:10 and 3:15.

Also coming up this weekend is a jewelry party at Bobbie Maurer and Margaret Stefanich's place in Hawaii Kai. They wanted me to share with you all that you are invited to a Pre-Holiday Party featuring the exquisite sterling silver jewelry of Silpada! If you have not seen this jewelry yet you are in for a treat! It is lovely and reasonably priced between $20.00 and $200.00!

Their party is Sunday, October 19th from 1pm to 5pm at Bobbie and Margaret's 144 Opihikao Way, Kauapa Isle/ Hawaii Kai. Phone is 395-1794. Light Pupu's & Beverages will be served. You are under no obligation to buy anything... it's ok to bring a friend, come and look and just have fun with the girls! Us Peggy Chun gals will be there checking out the jewelry and we'll have some of Peggy's merchandise there too.