All posts filed under: Stuff We Love

Growing Up, Growing Old

I am an only child to young parents. They were barely 20 years old when they had me, which led to an extended family living situation so I grew up beside them, while my grandparents served as my second pair of parents until I went to boarding school at the young age of 13. Before my ʻūniki 1.5 years ago, my mom called me in tears. She had been diagnosed with breast cancer and she was scared. Over the course of the next 6 months, I would fly up to Honolulu, meeting my parents halfway, to attend the slew of doctors’ appointments, which coincided with her chemotherapy treatments. After chemotherapy, she underwent a double mastectomy and a stint of radiation. When she came through everything, we were told to hang tight for 6 months to make sure she was was out of the woods and being that my mom has been an avid runner for a long time, we were optimistic, but during recent check-ups, tests revealed that cancer had shown up in her liver and this time, there was less to …

Ocean Treasures

This photo takes me back to our weekend of exploring a beautiful beach on the island of Kaua’i where we found an amazing stretch of white sand with not a single human in sight.  It was also a unique experience as we found ‘opihi nestled on the rocks right on the beach.  You normally have to scale the cliffs along the ocean to find these beautiful sea creatures as they tend to get harvested for food or for jewelry making.  We left these three lonely ‘opihi alone and continued on our walk along the beach enjoying the fresh air and sounds of the surf crashing along the shore. For Paula’s Thursday Special Find us on social media outlets and get to know the Holoholo Girls better! Facebook  Instagram @holohologirls Twitter


From both sides of the family my son comes from long line of cockfighting. As many would view this as cruel and a blood sport my upbringing showed me otherwise.  These animals were cared for and trained like professional athletes. Much pride came with raising chickens. So for my son you could say its in his bloodline. Future Find us on social media outlets and get to know the Holoholo Girls better! Facebook  Instagram @holohologirls Twitter

Itchy Feet Now in Thailand

I’ve had itchy feet for as long as I can remember.  From road trips around the west coast to flights from Hawaii to the mainland to visit family, I’ve been traveling almost on a somewhat annual basis.  It’s no wonder now that I have itchy feet when I stay in one place for too long but I think my penchant to travel has taken me on a new journey even I didn’t anticipate. Here is my home: Lovely, isn’t it? You may ask why I decided to leave everyone’s definition of ‘paradise’ and I could simply reply, “itchy feet” but I know it’s a bit deeper than that.  I had my first taste of international living when I studied abroad in Japan back in 2008 – another great place to live – and I still say I left a piece of my heart there even till this day.  I don’t think I was as ready as I thought I would be to take that leap outside of my comfort zone, so I had my fill of …

Tempting Ohia Lehua Blossom

Saturday evening was the culmination of the Merrie Monarch hula festivities, but not the end to the awareness of the rapid ohia death which is plaguing the island of Hawaii. Many of the hula halaus respected the unspoken ban of using the lovely ohia blossom in their hula attire as it could jeopardize future generations from enjoying the beauty of this flower.  The ohia has a significant meaning for hula and not being able to use it in abundance in the festivities was a crutch for many, but also allowed the kumu hulas (hula teachers) to think outside of the box on using other native plants and/or flowers. Until the ohia are healthy, many hula practitioners as well as lei makers will not be entering the forest on the island of Hawaii as frequent as before.  If anyone is visiting the Island of Hawaii, take note of the poster below from Rapid Ohia Death awareness group: On Monday, Hilo International Airport was flooded with flowers and leis left behind by visitors who could not remove …

Weekly Small Pleasures (#9)

Merrie Monarch Hilo comes alive during Merrie Monarch week and this year was no different. I went to the free hōʻike night on Wednesday to watch Hālau o Kekuhi, as well as other indigenous dance from Taiwan, Tahiti, and New Zealand. I also watched TV coverage of the competition on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night. Over the course of the week, I had 3 performances and walked in the parade on Saturday. Below are a few photos, most taken by Maria, from my week. It felt amazing to be dancing again and to be immersed in hula for 7 straight days. Sunday, March 27: Kīpaepae Welina (Welcoming Ceremony)   Tuesday, March 29: UNU Noontime Performance at the Naniloa Hotel     Thursday, March 31: UNU at ʻImiloa Astronomy Center   Saturday, April 2: Merrie Monarch Parade Here are other people’s weeks: A New Life Wandering | Weekly Small Pleasures #82 Find us on social media outlets and get to know the Holoholo Girls better! Facebook  Instagram @holohologirls Twitter

A ao ka pō

  Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky. Rabindranath Tagore Half-Light Find us on social media outlets and get to know the Holoholo Girls better! Facebook  Instagram @holohologirls Twitter

Sakura Sakura Sakura 

For most of our visit in South Korea the temperature was averaging minus one degree Celsius in the morning and reaching 16 degrees Celsius by mid afternoon. For us island folks we were freezing and could not feel our fingers and toes if we stood outside for more than 10 minutes. But the turning point was seeing the lovely Sakura blossoms starting to bloom on the trees where ever we looked.  This was a telling sign that spring is definitely approaching and the weather will be getting warmer. There were many people who were walking around with shorts, t-shirts and sandals. Standing next to them our group looked like we were going skiing with all the layers of clothes and protective gear we were wearing. We were all lucky to see the beautiful Sakura blossoms, and I hope my other Hawaii friends who will be visiting South Korea next month will find a Sakura in bloom, too.  Seeing these beautiful flowers in person was quite lovely as their petals looked so fluffy and delicate.  I …

Architecture (Photo 101, Day 12)

For the past month, we’ve been practicing hula in a space with no mirrors and dance-unfriendly flooring, but tonight, we returned to dancing in Polihua a Mauliola, a quonset hut that was converted into a hālau dance space and where we’ve danced our entire training prior to ʻūniki. Stepping in to the space felt kind of like visiting your childhood home after just settling into your first apartment. Returning home, everything feels intimately familiar. You know where things are located and you can relax in the space, but the truth is, itʻs not really your home anymore. That’s how I felt tonight. I missed Polihua, but more so, I missed how my body responds in that space, and how I am able to dance beside people I’ve danced with for all these years. Here are some other photos I’ve taken on my travels that speak to the amazing architecture I’ve never really noticed before going abroad.  

Human Totem Pole

An afternoon stroll in South Korea with the family and we came across this stop sign which caught my attention for my daughter who was sitting on my husband’s shoulders was much taller than the actual sign.  From this perspective it appears my husband is much taller than his six foot frame or that he may be standing on a rock, but the sign is shorter than the average stop signs where the highest point of this sign reached his shoulders. For Paula’s Thursday Special

Pop of Color (Photo 101, Day 11)

I came across a few pūkiawe bushes with bright pink berries today. After I took the photo, I noticed that although the pink stood out, the green leaves were amazing in their own right. I should have saved a few photos from yesterday’s post for today because some of the dancers’ pāʻū were an amazing orange, so I’ll repost just because I love the color and texture of the pāʻū. Finally, I’ve not known what to do with this photo that I took last summer at the Esprit Dior exhibit in Seoul last year, but on display was Charlize Theron’s Dior dress from Cannes 2015 and the yellow popped inside that darkened room.