Month: July 2013

Finding Balance… work hard, play hard

Summer surely is flying on by. “Mom, when are we going to da hotel?” Kodee asks. “Next Week,” I responded.  Oh my, next week is now!  In preparation for the weekend … a mom’s work is never done!  Laundry, tidying up, packing… oh joy! But seriously, spending time with my family and creating new childhood memories for my keiki are my top priorities.  Though with long hours at work, never ending “to do” task lists, and meetings on the outer islands, making quality time for my family is challenging.  Who knew  balancing a career and family would be a work of art! But this weekend… oh, it’s on! Let’s do this!  As I leave behind my worries and stresses at work, and start the weekend present with my ohana, motherhood (and wife-hood!) sets in and life goes on. I strive to live with this approach in mind … Work hard, play hard! Packed snacks, stopped for ice and off we went to Waikoloa for our staycation!  The open road and drive to Waikoloa was beautiful and serene.  Upon our arrival to …

Pohoiki Bay

The drive down to Pohoiki Bay is breathtaking; the road is lined with tall trees creating a lush green canopy. On a sunny day, the rays peek through the trees creating a magical feel. Closer to the shoreline, large mango trees line both sides of the road welcoming you to the beach. The day we headed to Pohoiki there were plump ripe mangos hanging on the tree tempting beach goers to stop along the way to pick a few fruits for their afternoon merenda. The morning of our outing Rogene reminded me that we had been to this beach when we were in college. I seriously thought I had only discovered this beach since returning home almost a decade ago. Whenever I hear folks refer to Pohoiki, I only think of surf.  If you had to find it on the map, it’s labeled as Isaac Hale Beach Park. This beach is located on the east side of Hawaiʻi Island past Pāhoa town. The park is well kept with ample parking, a shower stall, mom & …

Glamour Pusses

Carolina, Rogene, and I are extremely low-maintenance, so when we decided to do a photo shoot for Holoholo Girls, the topic of make-up inevitably came up. We each looked in our respective make-up bags and found that tinted lip balm was how we collectively defined “glamming up”. We needed to do something. Simply applying lip balm might’ve worked when we were 14, but being in our mid- to late 30’s means we should already be well-versed in make-up and using it on a daily basis. It would’ve been simple to tap our friends and/or professionals, but we decided to tackle this head on. It would be an adventure. What ensued were evenings spent researching make-up application on YouTube and Pinterest, trips to the local drug stores to aimlessly wander the beauty aisles, endless email threads discussing topics like filling in eyebrows, applying fake eyelashes, wardrobe, and finally, hours practicing the application of foundation, eye shadow, and yes, fake eyelashes. Needless to say, our support networks were really honest and sometimes, not so encouraging. Husbands would …

Love, Honor and Cherish thy feet

The human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art. Leonardo da Vinci How often do you notice your feet? Maybe when they protest after being cramped into uncomfortable six-inch stilettos for the sake of fashion, or when you’ve been on your feet working a ten-hour shift? Unfortunately, it would take such blaring incidents for most people to pay attention to what I feel is the foundation of your body, just as roots are to a tree. My foot obsession goes as far back as my jelly sandal days, and reached a critical point last year when my feet were totally wrecked after running the Honolulu Marathon. 26.2 miles will do that to anyone’s feet; even the most elite runners walk away with at least one blister. Unfortunately in my case I had three: two on my toes (one on each foot) and one on my left heel that was the size of a Roma tomato. Slippers were the only form of foot protection my footsies could tolerate. Not exactly the most …

Transition to the Mundane

My first trip to Japan was so wonderful that I want to linger in the experience and not catalog it as a memory just yet. I’ve been home for 2 days now and am still transitioning back from idyllic Yurihama to my life in Hilo. I’m also struggling with articulating my thoughts, especially since I was in a kind of dream-state for the better part of the week, opting to empty my mind and allow new experiences to flow through, so I’ll share with all of you, my favorite images from this trip taken in Yurihama, Misasa, and Kurashiki. We all know all good things must come to an end, but I’d like to savor it for just a bit longer.

Babywearing Culture

As first time parents, my husband and I were struggling to soothe our infant daughter while getting our tasks done around the hale. After several inquiries, but mostly at the recommendation of my sister-in-law, I was advised to look into acquiring a Ring Sling Wrap (RSW). Not knowing what this was, I googled it online. With the RSW, the tautness of the material is adjusted via two rings on your shoulder. You carry your baby in the wrap, which enables you to have your hands free. We chose two RSW, a Maya Wrap (Maya) and a Sakura Bloom (SB). My husband loves his cotton Maya, while I prefer the linen SB. Since our baby weighs less than 15lbs carrying her in the RSW is manageable. Several friends also suggested a Soft Structured Carrier (SSC), such as the Ergo Baby. We only started using our SSC as baby’s neck got stronger. The advantage of the SSC is that it’s great for hikes since it has padded shoulder straps. During my pregnancy, my mother, the resourceful person …

Koo Koo for Coconuts

Now available at almost every grocery store near you, everything coconut is the absolute cat’s meow. Coconut milk, coconut oil, coconut water, coconut pulp – it’s tasty, versatile and oh so good! My love affair with the famed fruit began long before prepackaged Vita Coco, ONE or ZICO beverages. Coconuts have been part of my daily diet and lifestyle for as long as I can remember. I spent many Saturday mornings as a young child with my mother and sister, climbing palm trees harvesting, hulling and grating coconuts. It was the way my grandmother had taught my mother to gather food as a child and a tradition my mother was passing on to her daughters. After hours of laboring, my mother would prepare savory Filipino dishes like Ginataang Kalbasa (squash cooked in coconut milk), Sapin-Sapin (purple yam and coconut milk dessert) and Suman (coconut rice cake). However, my all-time favorite to this day is fresh Buko juice (young coconut water) straight from the coconut. Although much of the coconut harvested was used for consumption, my …