Posts tagged ‘family’

December 2, 2011

Snipbits from Thanksgiving

Just like last year, my family geared up to spend Thanksgiving with my brother Darren on the island of Hawai`i. 

We all had a blast with the randomness of last year [our feast featured a humungous fresh-caught mahi mahi rather than turkey], and this year was no disappointment either. 

I didn’t get many photos this year, as I spent most of my time feeling fatigued, grouchy, and dealing with the ebbs and flows of nausea, but I did want to post a few shots of the things I did capture. 

We relaxed, caught up, and played games. 

Mexican Train dominoes was our game of choice over the long weekend, but we also bellied up for a game of Bean Boozled, which is sort of like Fear Factor with jelly beans.  Everyone picks a white/yellow bean and chews; some people get buttered popcorn and others get rotten egg.  There were about ten different combinations.  I obviously did not partake in many flavors… although I do have to say that the toothpaste flavor really tastes like toothpaste! 


We hiked. 

Hawai`i island is massive in comparison to the other islands, as is the vast beauty there.  The trees on the east side are all lush and humungous, and they actually have wide rivers, whereas Maui just has streams.  Exploring there, especially on the east side, is so much fun because there is so much variety and everything is just so beautiful. 



[Waipi`o Valley]


[Umauma Falls]


[Lava Tree Park]

We drove to the north side of the island. 

Last year we spent our entire long weekend on the east and south sides of Hawai`i, so we were determined to venture north this year.  We hit Waimea and then headed up to see the heiau at Pu`uhokola. 


[Beer tasting at Big Island Brewhaus in Waimea]


[Pu`ukohola heiau]

We goofed off. 

Everything is fun when you’re surrounded by good people!  We checked out the astronomy center in Hilo town and went bowling at Hilo Lanes, since we can’t do either on Maui. 


[3D movie at `Imiloa Astronomy Center / Bowling at Hilo Lanes]

Most of all, it was just nice to be on vacation with each other.  My brother is preparing to make a big move soon, so it was meaningful for all of us to be able to be close to him for support.  Family time means the world to me!

Alright, I’ve got a TurboKick class to teach, followed by some seriously overdue studying for finals.  I hope I make it through today because the reward tonight will be so worth it – watching my Oregon Ducks take the Pac-12 Championship title!  Smile

Have a beautiful day, friends!

May 13, 2011

Mr. Ben Graduates

Happy Friday! 

Lately, I’ve been waking up to Seattle-like weather outside.


[Can someone explain to me what’s going on with these clouds?  I do live on Maui, right?]

Luckily for me, temps are always in the mid-eighties and it’s still nice at the beachSmile.  Yesterday I spent some time playing in the waves before teaching my kickboxing class, and then I came home to a Green Plate Dinner made by Ben! 


[Rice pilaf with broccoli greens + wild Alaskan salmon from the BBQ]

It was a really nice surprise to have a Ben-cooked meal!  We used to split the dinner-cooking duties pretty evenly, but lately I’ve been doing most of it because I’m home much more and Ben is busy finishing up his degree. Somehow food always tastes better when someone else makes it for me.  Don’t you agree?

These Seattle-like mornings must be making us extra homesick for Ben’s family because we listened to a music compilation put together by Pop while we ate by candlelight last night.  [Side note: Pop makes the best compilations of anyone I’ve ever known.  Also: I wish Seattle wasn’t an ocean away.]

Today is a big day for my family as Ben graduates with his teaching degree tonight! 

We both got our undergraduate degrees in Psychology and then Ben went on to work with kids with special needs.  That’s when he realized his incredible gift and decided to study Special Education.  He is really amazing with people in general, but especially fantastic with those who need a little extra patience and care.  I know it sounds like I’m just saying this because I’m obsessed with my hubby, but if you ask anyone who knows Ben, they’ll all tell you how special he truly is. 


I’ll be making lei using plumeria from the yard today [the amount we have is borderline ridiculous] for Ben’s ceremony tonight.  Then we’ll have his official grad celebration tomorrow at the Maui Brewers Festival!  Ben is a huge beer fanatic, so it’s the perfect way to celebrate!  The fact that I’m not big on beer works out perfectly because I get to sip on samples and then give the remaining beer to the guys.  Win-Win! 

Off to get this wonderful day started!  Have a beautiful Friday, friends!

Aloha Pumehana. Whether you’re here to find balance, wholesome recipes or inspiration, I hope you enjoy the posts.  Please subscribe to Green Plate Dinners to receive automatic updates and be the first to read new posts for free!


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