Aloha and e kipa mai! Welcome to Green Plate Dinners!
My name is Haley and I am a 25-year-old island girl striving to create balance and harmony in my very busy life. Through my blog I hope to exhibit my passions of living a simple yet significant lifestyle that focuses on balance, creativity, harmony and enlightenment [you can find Green Plate Dinner's mission here].
Born and raised of the island of Maui, I never realized that I lived in the paradise people talked about on television - it was always just home to me.
I realized early on that I was quite the pioneer.
[Age 12] : I sat my Mom down and explained that I would be going to college as soon as I was done with high school. I made sure she knew that I wasn’t going to University of Hawai`i, either; I was getting off the rock, as soon as possible! No one in my family had ever gone to college, but I figured there was a first for everything.
[Age 15] : I got my first taste of true culture shock when I flew clear across the country to Michigan alone (apparently they don’t eat spam musubi there…). It was then that I fell in love with traveling.
[Age 18] : True to my word, I left the islands for the University of Oregon.
Those four years away from home – away from everything and everyone I knew – changed the way I saw everything. It was there that I truly fell in love with Maui, my culture, and my roots.
While in college I made leaps and bounds with my health and wellness and became knowledgeable about the ways in which I wanted to live my life and fuel my body and soul.
During my junior year of college, I traveled and studied in Aotearoa/New Zealand. Moving across the world taught me more than I could ever have imagined. I fell in love with the culture there and even deeper in love with the person I was (a first for me)! Coincidentally (or not), that was also about the time I fell in love with Ben, who had been one of my best friends since the first day of freshman year.
We began to explore ourselves, each other, and the world together. We spent weeks road tripping through Aotearoa as well as Australia solidifying our partnership. My relationship with Ben has brought profound healing, self-love and beauty into my life in ways I couldn’t begin to explain in words. Together, we have created a very beautiful life with simplicity and health as our guiding principles.
After we both graduated in 2007 with our Bachelor degrees (mine is in Psychology and Ethnic Studies), I asked him if he would mind moving to Hawai`i. It didn’t take him more than a second to agree.
Since coming back home, I’ve found immense solace in the trees and rejuvenation in the ocean. I’ve made it a point to learn more about the ways in which my island home is being over-populated, mis-used, and overwhelmed. There are many issues that come along with being from Maui, but my hope is to raise my children in the same incredible and diverse environment I was lucky enough to grow up in.
To create a sustainable environment, we support local and sustainable people, products and companies. Living on an island means that we have limited resources, but it also means that the weather is perfect to grow all year round! With cost of living being one of the highest in the nation (if not the world), I have learned to live without many frivolities.
Ben and I are grateful every day to live in a beautiful (and modest) cottage on the slopes of Haleakala, where we are able to watch the sun set over the ocean or the mountains every day.
Love + Light
I married my best friend Benjamin on October 10th, 2009 at sunrise with our closest friends in attendance. We have created a beautiful life for ourselves – surrounded by the most incredible people – and I have never felt more alive or excited about life as I do now!
I am passionate about many things, most notably community, health and wellness (exercise + nutrition), and creativity. I started cooking for myself while in college, and have grown to enjoy it more and more as the years pass; cooking is not just a means to healthy living for me, but a creative outlet. I finally began creating jewelry this past year (something I’ve always been interested in) and have found it to be an incredible tangible creation outlet.
My writing has evolved throughout the years from 7-page letters to Mom, to color-coded friendship notes, to college papers, to journaling, and now to Green Plate Dinners. I thoroughly enjoy the indescribable connection I feel to my source while creating and am looking to expand my horizons through writing.
My passion for community has brought me many powerful experiences, but this past year, the decades of effort all came to fruition.
Strength & Hope
I’ve always had an inherent passion to help others and create a stronger, brighter community on Maui. I learned of my acceptance into a very competitive Masters in Social Work program to start August 2010, and realized that I would no longer be able to give the other areas of my life as much attention as I would like to. With such a full schedule (full time work + full time grad school + teaching fitness classes) it also meant that I wouldn’t be able to spend much quality time with my husband.
Which brings us up to date .
I’ve got quite the balancing act happening between all the incredible things life has offered me and I am taking it all on with an open heart and a bright smile! Join me on my journey in living a simple yet significant life.
I would love to get to know my readers better and am always more than happy to answer any questions you may have! Leave a comment or e-mail me at email@example.com.