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Friday, January 27, 2012

Day in the life

This is paradise, right here.

One of the first adventures we went on was up into the mountains a ways to pick kukui nuts. These little guys have been used by Hawaiians for years as a food source ( more on that later), and the oil can either be burned or used on your skin. So when the kids were all kinds of excited to get up the mountain, I wasn't sure what to expect. I mean, how exactly does one pick nuts? * I KNOW there's a joke there, but I'm trying to tell a story here*  Well, it apparently all starts with buckets. Lots of buckets. and a white knuckled drive up what looked like a deer trail over some boulders to the kukui grove. I guess I thought we'd be sending the kids up the trees to shake the nuts down? But no, picking nuts means exactly that, you're picking them up off the ground. 

Those are not pebbles, those are kukui nuts. 
We had 6 five gallon buckets to fill before we'd be done for the day. Oh sure, you're thinking. Find a good spot, plop down and start shoveling them in, right? Wrongo!! Cuz not all of them are good, see? You have to check them before you throw them into the bucket. Also, watch out for centipedes!  And some of them aren't ripe yet either. You can peel them, but it's really gross. Those look like this: 

Unripe kukui held by Kekai,. 
Now might be a good time to introduce y'all to Uncle Joe, hub's mom's brother. He's like...well..he's....ok. Imagine a dude that's good at everything outdoorsy, is wickedly funny and a wise-ass, has enough personality to make a tornado back down and goes hunting in board shorts. That's a bare bones, basic idea of what Uncle Joe is all about. He hunts, fishes ( with nets and spears), dives and manages to get the kids all riled up all at the same time. He's amazing, and he's hub's inspiration I think. I can see a lot of Uncle Joe in Hubs. 

Hubs, Uncle Joe and the dogs.

We spent all day in the woods, and I got filthy and had unidentified gunk under my nails and I loved every second of it. At one point, the dogs heard some deer in the area, so Hubs, Uncle Joe and myself all take off after them with the rifle. I missed a great photo op on that hike, a shot of both Hubs and Uncle Joe in profile, both looking off into the distance...I tear up a little remembering that moment. I could see the bloodline of Hub's family stamped on their faces and it was beautiful. 

Tiny mango.

I've got tons more pictures of the forest, but in the interest of moving on, here's the end of our day. 

6 buckets of delicious. 

When we got home, we saw this rainbow. I was one else was. I forgot, rainbows happen everyday on Molokai. 

Home at the end of the rainbow.

We ended up filling all the buckets by mid afternoon, but by then everyone was so tired that we basically went home, got cleaned up, ate and were in bed by 6pm! The only downside to such an early bedtime though is waking up at 2AM fully refreshed. Fortunately, the weather in Hawaii is vastly superior to New England, so it's possible to be outside at 2AM and be happy about it. Hubs and I went fishing on the wharf, where I learned to cast, and that being on the floating dock makes me really dizzy. 

Molokai Moon 1.

Hubs teaching K the finer points.

Hubs, and the island of Lanai.
Later on that morning, we took our niece K with us fishing again. While we didn't catch anything ( well, I got a sunburn, YAY!!! No really, I got the best tan ever after that burn!) we did have a bunch of fun, and I got to see Hubs interact with children, which I love for obvious reasons. 

More on Monday! Enjoy the weekend everyone! Aloha!!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Just a small town girl

My father in law cultivates orchids in the back yard.
Our first full day on Molokai dawned bright and clear. After getting a little settled in, the family packed up and headed into town for breakfast at Molokai Burger, one of only a few restaurants in Kaunakakai. I had a giant loco moco ( rice, a burger and an egg, smothered in delicious brown gravy!!!) and felt so full I thought I'd died and gone to food heaven. To work off some of our food, we walked around town a bit, enjoying the Saturday Market and looking at all the cool stuff. I, of course, took pictures of everything. And I do mean everything. By the end of our trip, the family was used to seeing me with my camera plastered to my face, or near at hand at all times.

T, me, and A at Molokai Burger

The Saturday market was awesome, and the girls all got their ears pierced. I was so proud of them! After the market was done, we decided to head up to the Kalaupapa Lookout, a spot where you can see down to the peninsula where the leper colony used to be/still is. The history of the place is pretty sad, basically "they" turned what would have been a tropical paradise into a prison for sick people. ( Learn more here: )

The view from the Lookout. 

The park around the Lookout is made up of forest and mountains, but I'd never seen trees like these before. We went exploring a little, and the kids led me by the hand to what's called the Boto Rock. It's a giant rock, shaped like a penis. For generations it's been believed to promote fertility, so of course I had to sit on it.

Hubs and I on the Boto.

I learned how to hike in flip flops that day. It's a lesson I will never forget. We took it pretty easy for the rest of the day, having a few drinks and calling it a night early. Little did I know, sleep wouldn't be easy to come by. Did you know that roosters crow all night long? And that they like to talk to each other like dogs? All night long? I didn't, not that night. But I learned, oh boy did I learn. * grumbles about roosters*

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Paradise Found part II

So, after traveling for what felt like an eternity, we landed at MKK...Molokai Airport. I was about to face the toughest challenge of my marriage, the females in hub's family. Luckily for me, my M-I-L kicks ass, and is awesome. It was the nieces that I was more worried about. Imagine, trying to impress a bunch of preteen girls, all while being married to the favoriteset uncle of all time. Yup, I had my work cut out for me for sure. But again..either I'm blessed or just super blessed, because the girls took to me right away.

The girls. I was so scared of them!!

After some hugs, it was time to get back in the truck and travel some more, from one end of the island to the other for a huge family party. Maybe I should explain. Hubs doesn't get home much, so it's a big deal when he comes to visit. We managed to keep this visit a surprise from everyone except his mom. So the huge family party we were heading for? All for us, only nobody knew it yet. All I knew for sure was that I felt stinky and tired, and really really nervous. I mean, how big can an impromptu family party be, right?

There's people you can't see over there in the back.

When we pulled in, it looked like there were about 100 people there! Oh anxiety attack mode am I ever going to remember all these names? How will I know if I'm making an ass of myself? Good god, is that ALL FOOD??? It was all food, so much food and all of it smelling delicious. 

Everything under the foil is food. Yup, all of it.

Meeting hub's family was like nothing I ever experienced. There was no awkward period where you're all     "derp, what do I talk about now?" and no time where I ever felt unwelcome. It truly was an  amazing experience in what would become a month of adventures.  While I was busy trying to remember everyone's names and find a bathroom, hubs managed to catch up with his dad for a little quality bonding time. 

They look more alike when hubs isn't hiding his face.

After staying up way too late for our own good, we headed back into town. I couldn't wait to take a shower and get some rest. With the whole time travel thing, I think we'd ended up staying awake for about 48 hours, give or take a cat nap. Next up: our first week on the island or "Why I Don't Wear Sunblock"

Monday, January 23, 2012

Paradise Found

Ho brah! How you stay? Stoney kine yeah? We're back from Hawaii, and we had an awesome time. I took mad pictures y'all, and have some stories to talk to you ! When we left New England, in the middle of December, there was no snow, and the temperatures were still in the 50s. The day of our departure dawned sunny and mostly clear, so take off was a breeze. 

Somewhere over New England

Security at the airport was fun to go through, even with the full body sci-fi scanner, I still got the TSA feel-up. Hubs said it was because of my jewelry, and he's most likely right, but come on people, a pat down for a necklace? OOOOKKKKKK. So after that, we sat around for a while and hyped ourselves up for the really long day of travel ahead of us. By the way, I'm sure most of you know that airports are non smoking, but did you know that if you want a cigarette, you have to leave the terminal and go through security again to get back in? Intellectually I knew this, but I didn't think it important at the time.

Over land and sea we traveled. 

The first leg of our journey went smoothly. The flight was about 5 hours, I only had to pee once, maybe twice and I hardly thought about smoking at all. Also, by this time I was starting to get hungry. I figures that we'd have enough time during our layover in Phoenix to grab a quick smoke and a sandwich before getting on another plane. I was wrong. Very very wrong. Oh we had time to grab a sandwich, and get in line to board our next flight immediately. I didn't even have time to think about peeing.

My first glimpse of Molokai

Flying from Phoenix to Honolulu was awesome and uneventful. Flying over the ocean takes a little getting used to, but the views are worth it. The last leg of our adventure was on a single prop Cessna, to hop over to Molokai. I have to admit that for the first time I was scared a little. The plane looked so tiny! If you don't like roller coasters, don't try this one. I loved every second of it though!! And at last we landed!! Hello Hawaii!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Another day in Paradise

I've got a lot going on these days, and man is it awesome! Hubs and I are preparing for our first trip to Hawaii, my first time meeting my in laws and being gone for a while in the middle of winter. This last one has caused much stress for me, as option after option fell through. I am blessed though, as Indy and her man are going to come down, drive hubs and I to the airport then babysit my car for me so it doesn't freeze to death while I'm gone. It's funny, I'm expecting to learn bunches of new stuff about hubs and Hawaii and myself, but before I've even left, I learned something about family. And it's that sometimes you can't count on them. Sure, what a shitty thing to say you're thinking. But deep inside you know that I'm right. There ARE times when your family can't help you out, and that's what I learned. I'm still pretty pissed about this, actually now that I'm thinking about it again, so I'm going to stop, show you a picture then change the subject like a lady.
                                                                    ( I'm really not!!)

I know how much you all love it when I embarrass myself in public, so have I got a story for you. The other night, I was sitting in the car waiting at the train station to pick hubs up from school. It was a little chilly, so I had the heater on low. Suddenly..and I do mean ALL OF A SUDDEN the interior of my car smelled like BO and old socks and funk. My first thought was " Oh shit, what did I just break in the heating system/engine??"....then..the horrible truth came to me. That stench..was me. Oh God..catastrophic deodorant failure. I made sure to crack a window and turn the heat off, trying desperately to get rid of the stink...but just as I almost couldn't smell it anymore....hubs gets in the car. I paste on a grin and ask how his day went, praying that he won't ask about the smell or get too close to me before we get home. As we start rolling through traffic at the train station, he says.." hey, do you smell that? " busted. Thankfully, he didn't tease me too much..he stopped eventually. The next day.

I was woken up this morning by an odd sound. It was sort of a banging, howling noise, coming from outside.  Like any self respecting person, my initial reaction was zombies. Sadly (?) it wasn't zombies, it was just some crazy storm that rolled through, raining all over the place and knocking down trees. It's still hella windy here too, a sustained wind which is making me nervous. Anyhow, I've got stuff to get done today that I should probably get started on. Oh! I'm packing a notebook so I can write some stories for y'all while I'm gone, I'll start with our arrival at the airport and get as many details down as I can. So, if I don't see y'all before the holidays, enjoy, be safe, and save me some eggnog! xoxoxoxo

Monday, October 31, 2011

Costumed Capers

I LOVE Halloween. Love it love it love it. Some of the best parties I've ever been to were costume parties, and the dressing up is only half the fun. This year, however, my celebrations will be much more subdued. This year there's no party to go to, so instead of this:
                                          Me, G. M. and Jenny as the Three Musketeers

or this:

                                                               Foster and I
I'll be staying home for the most part, doing wifey things and wearing my fangs to remind me of the good ol days. Have a great day everyone, don't eat too much candy, and watch out for zombies!!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

OMG October!!!!

So, here's the sitch. This has been one hell of a busy month so far, and it's only half over!! Let me start at the beginning, ok? The first and bestest thing is that my sister got married! Congratulations Hay and 2A12!!!! It was a beautiful day, full of love and laughter. The ceremony was held outdoors, ballsy, I know, especially at this time of year, but my sister is some kind of magical because that day the weather was perfect! Everyone looked amazing, and I haven't seen a couple so in love since the last time hubs and I got our picture taken. Now, I know you're all dying to know about the reception, and I'll tell you. Picture a room full of joy, add some love, now make everyone starving. Just as you think things are going to start getting hectic...along comes Brother Perry, with The Most Delicious Food Ever. Here's a link to his website, go there, drool a bit then come back, cuz I've got pictures!!!!    
The food was amazing. The staff was so friendly and professional, it felt more like having friends help you out. Through the magic of Kenny's kitchen, a joy filled day was made more special, and for that I thank him and urge everyone in the Boston area to book them asap. It's worth it!!

Yes, we ate soul food until we thought we'd burst. After that, hubs and I needed some air, so we returned to the park where the ceremony was held and he took me on a very romantic boat ride around the lake to watch the sun set. * Girly sigh* I just love him!

So wedding stuff took up some time. But I have also been busy expanding my business. You all know about the Etsy shop,( buy my stuff!! ) now I've got a retail space too! I met with the owners of Find a Unique Boutique in Greenfield MA, and the most excellent manager H chose 7 pieces to be in the store. I am totally excited right now and can't wait to see what the next adventure is going to be!
Until then, xoxox