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  1. Oh Wow! You are so busy! I hope surgery goes well, and I am sure everyone here is praying for you along with me! We should really meet up and do a real coffee date someday! Congrats to Luke and Jonah! That is so exciting!
    Love, Emma

  2. Prayers for a successful surgery and speedy recovery, Monica! Really looking forward to the podcast. That’s my favorite form of media these days.

    1. oh yay! Thank you Melissa! (Podcasts have become my favorite too!) I hope mine comes together and becomes one of your favorites! 🙂 Much aloha!

  3. Beth LaFleur says:

    Hi Monica,
    I love your blog. I have 2 boys, 13 and 10, and I’ve been subscribing for years now. Your posts are inspiring, reassuring, and always a comfort, especially as my oldest is now a teen! So thank you for keeping at it 🙂 Re shoulder surgery: Three years ago I broke and rotated my upper humerus and had to have surgery and a plate with 13 screws put in. If I have any advice to give you, this is it: Have patience with your healing. It will take time. Every day post-op is one day closer to your “new normal”. Don’t gage progress from day to day but more from week to week or longer. Get off the drugs asap. Don’t be too proud or afraid to ask for help. Find a good physical therapist and go as much as you can and for as long as you can. After my 6 month’s worth of insurance PT benefit ran out, I did my exercises on my own for a while until we moved to Bend, OR and a year later, I went in for some more PT to hone in on where I still felt weak movement points. I found that once I was cleared to get in a pool, I did my PT exercises in the deep end and that really expedited healing and building back strength. I have made swimming a part of my new normal to keep and increase my shoulder/upper bicep mobility. Eat healing foods (obviously you do this already) 🙂
    Can’t wait to read your new book and listen to your podcasts!
    You’ll do great!

    1. Thank you for sharing your experience Beth!! That is super encouraging, though I think you had it a lot worse than I do! (poor thing, I can’t imagine!) Great advice for me as I am not good at being patient or doing anything “slow.” 🙂 I think getting in the water will be super helpful, and since it’s summer and flat here on our North Shore I will work towards that! Do you still live in Bend? We love it there! Blessings to you and thank you so much for being a part of my blog community. It’s so much fun hearing from you! aloha-

  4. Monica, I have been following your blog for two years already, and I am thrilled by all your insight and inspiration, and you bet I will subscribe to your Podcast; I cannot wait! Prayers for your surgery and a fast recovery! The way you write really makes me feel like I am talking to you, and since two years ago I have called you a friend. THANK YOU for all the work your are putting out there! 🤗 🙏

  5. Netflix: Rotten, somebody feed Phil, chefs table!

  6. Monica, I’m praying for a successful surgery and quick recovery! I loved the update and all the exciting things happening for you and your boys 🙂

    I don’t have any Netflix suggestions, but if you find yourself in need of some great worship to take your mind off the pain, try some of these:


    Take care 🙂


  7. Hello! I am a kindergarten teacher and mom to one daughter. I really enjoy reading your Boy Mom posts. They help me understand the special little boys in my charge every year. It really is different raising boys compared to girls 🙂

  8. Jenae Bishop says:

    Mrs. Swanson,
    I keep up with your blog and IG posts. Thanks for keeping my spirits lifted! I just want you to know that I can empathize with you about the frozen shoulder issue. I had severe shoulder pain back in Dec of 2017, diagnosed Jan of 2018, tried PT, massage, acupuncture, AIRROSTI, chiro, cupping, you name it, to try and ease my pain, but it seemed to only aggravate it. I elected to have surgery in Nov 29, 2018, almost a year after my pain started!! I, like you, had some bone spurs that had to be shaved off, the adhesions cut and the area cleaned. I will say this, there was pain after surgery for about 2 months (they made me start PT as soon as the nerve block wore off😫), but it was definitely worth it!!!!!! I was able to raise my arm to comb my hair, get something off the top shelf, sleep….finally. Now, after finishing PT on April 23, I am back to push ups, strength training and lots of yard work and I LOVE it! I wish you the very best when you go have your surgery done. It’s worth it, I promise!
    Congratulations on all of the other good things happening in your life with your boys. You must be a proud momma!

    1. Oh thank you so much for sharing all of that!! Big encouragement as I head in for surgery this morning! It really is helpful to hear other’s stories and Yes, I can handle a bit more pain, if I believe I’m headed somewhere!! 😉 Blessings and thank you for taking the time to share! aloha-

  9. Monica your writing style always makes me smile and of course your wonderful photos brings back our dream to live near the ocean (at least for part of the winter) someday!
    Prayers have been sent to our Father and will continue to be said for you!
    The Lord Lives!
    Blessings from OH
    Debbie 🌸

  10. Aloha Monica! I hope you’re recovering well from your surgery. Dear Monica, I hope you’re recovering well from your surgery. After reading your post, it’s any wonder why you were in so much pain! You’re a trooper to stick it out so long.
    Congratulations to Luke, that is quite an accomplishment, especially in Hawaii!
    Congratulations also to Jonah, and I’m glad you have him home for another year. I think Gap years are great!
    Glad Josiah made it home safely from Westmont, and that you get to have him home for the summer, and I’m sure that makes your little guy really happy :).
    I think you’ll be in CA for more surf meets, but I’ll be returning to Haleiwa next month for the summer, can’t wait ;). Be well and our prayers are with you.

  11. Hi Monica,

    Best wishes for a successful and quick shoulder surgery. My husband had this exact surgery (a torn labrum and his biceps tendon ripped in two) last May. I just want you to know that a year later he is back to doing his Crossfit thing. You’ve got this!

    Sending get well wishes from Athens, Greece.


  12. Tanja Homeister says:

    Good luck for your surgery 🍀 ​- I have frozen shoulder too, but managed without surgery – although I am only back by 98%. But I am already grateful for this.
    All the best and I hope there isn’t too much pain.


  13. Prayers for a successful surgery and a speedy and complete recovery!

  14. Prayers for your surgery—it will be so great to get that shoulder working again! Love the poem! So true ♥️

  15. Follow your Physical Therapists exercises to the dot. Don’t do more and don’t do less. Ice is your friend, like seriously, have the boys run to the store and buy BAGS of ice, you will want it all.

    1. Good advice!! You’d be happy to hear I have a wonderful therapist! She’s super cool and smart too..so I think I’m in good hands! 🙂 Hope you’re doing well Sandy!!