All posts tagged: DPchallenge


Transition Last December, I went through the rites of ʻūniki which, in the tradition of my hālau, is a formal graduation ceremony marking ones transition to becoming a kumu hula or a teacher of hula. Every tradition is different. Some hālau do not ʻūniki students, while others do. I share this image with all of you because it was a defining moment in the ceremony. It was the culmination of my lifelong career as a hula student and the beginning of a new chapter. A kumu hula from a different tradition tied on my pāʻū kaula and was the first to greet me into this prestigious guild of hula masters. Becoming a kumu hula has been something I’ve reflected upon hundreds of times in the past year. I continue to mourn the end of my time as a hula student and although my new role demands its own attention, I now have time and space to properly process my transition between death and rebirth within the hula realm.

Writing Challenge: Flash Fiction

Write at least one six-word story and one piece of flash fiction.   300-word flash fiction This morning, she perfunctorily put on the black dress she had laid out the night before and vowed to herself in the mirror that she would hold it together today. All eyes would be on her and she didn’t want to give those cruel strangers the satisfaction of watching her cry. Thanks to him, she was in an awkward situation. His wife and three children had not known about her until the end, so when she entered the funeral home, a hush came over the room and people leaned in to whisper furiously, probably wondering what nerve she had to even show her face. She adjusted her black wide-brimmed hat and put her dark glasses back on, then found a seat toward the back of the room. A big, fat tear sat atop her lower lashes, so she blinked to allow it to fall. It ran down her cheeks and landed on her hands, which were crossed on her …

side orders | Weekly Writing Challenge: Fifty

For this week’s challenge, you must write a fifty-word story. Not five thousand, not five hundred, but precisely fifty words. She ducks into her favorite booth, the tacky vinyl sticking to the backs of her legs as she slides toward her favorite part of the seat. Once there, she breathes in the familiar and usually comforting aroma of coffee and pancakes, but it doesn’t make her feel better. Not today.   I really enjoyed this challenge, since it allows me to dabble in fiction without fully committing. Whatever idea for a story, I can fit succinctly into 50 precise words and then step away. I like that. I might do more of it.  Weekly Writing Challenge: Fifty |  

Weekly Writing Challenge: Writerly Reflections

Learning to read at a very young age meant never being lonely. As an only child, I both lost and found myself in books. In fact, some of my best friends were characters in my favorite books, like Ramona Quimby, Jo March, and Elizabeth Bennet, whose personalities influenced my own. Getting to know their outgoing characters definitely helped to quell the social awkwardness, that might’ve come  with being an only child. I began writing, as a kid, under my uncle’s and aunt’s encouragement. Being a voracious reader, they recognized my colorful imagination, so my uncle created blank homemade booklets for me and soon, all of the interesting stories that popped up in my head were put to paper. Although they weren’t stories and novels of epic proportions, they served as an outlet for all the creative churn that came with being an introverted only child with an overactive imagination. Writing had become such a part of my daily existence back then that I distinctly remember sitting in an entrance interview to attend a boarding school as a 7th grader and being asked by the interviewer, what …

Weekly Writing Challege: Power of Names

I was happy to discover a resource webpage created by Kamehameha Schools compiling the relevant texts and resources about the practice of naming in Hawaiian culture. The two primary resources are standards in Hawaiian culture that I last read in college as a Hawaiian Studies major, Nānā i Ke Kumu Vol. 1 (Pūkuʻi, 1972) and The Polynesian Family System in Kaʻū, Hawaiʻi (Pūkuʻi, 1989). For those of you unfamiliar with naming in the Hawaiian culture, the page offers insight to the importance of names. My parents had intended that the meaning of my name was “calm or open ocean”, which broken up, would be Kai (ocean) and Noa (free of kapu/taboo), but the literal translation of my name means “the name”, Ka (the) and Inoa (name). When I was younger, I didn’t give my name a second thought. It seemed too obvious to be special. It was also a name not many girls had. The older I got, however, the more I began to realize exactly how special it was. One gives life to a name. Children are …

Weekly Writing Challenge: Golden Years

For this week’s writing challenge, we’re asking you to explore what age means to you.  Just last month we celebrated my baby’s 1st b-day, and for the next few months we begin the birthday celebration of my posse, including mine.  When time permits, we love celebrating our birthdays together.  I never thought much about this milestone until this year.  I am not hitting a major birthday year ending in a zero, but I am hoping all of my life experiences will help me guide my little one to be an engaged young lady.  I secretly have aspirations for her, but I know it will be up to her to decide what she wants to do with her life. Knowing that she has so many choices and opportunities awaiting her, I hope I will be able to give her the advice to help her navigate through her life journey. I know that the challenges she will face in her childhood will be very different from mine.  In my opinion, one of the biggest differences is that …

Lunch, what?!

Whew, it’s been long day. One event done, and another one scheduled later today.  I have 20 minutes of a break for lunch.  I am hemming and hawing if I should grab lunch down at Island Naturals or pick up a spam musubi from the lunch kiosk.  Do I have time to drive down to the store?  Will I be able to make it back and enjoy my meal? As I contemplate what to eat for lunch, I watch a flurry of people walking past me.  A see a group of folks chatting and laughing near a picnic bench.  I glance in another direction and there is a group huddled in a corner peering intently at a laptop screen.  Geez, why cannot I decide what to eat.  Then, I get a whiff of coffee being prepared at the coffee cart a few yards away.  My stomach is growling with anger.   I know lunch has come and gone, but I need to refuel.  Hmm, maybe I’ll just grab a chai latte and a muffin at …

Weekly Photo Challenge: Family

This is Adrel, resident Holoholo Girls’ bestie and the brother I never had. By looking at this photo, one might think I terrorize him on the daily, but it couldn’t be farther from the truth. He’s always down to laugh, eat, and try new things. Most importantly, he isn’t afraid to look silly. This photo confirms his awesomeness. Weekly Photo Challenge: Family |

Weekly Photo Challenge: Window

Grand and ornate windows leave us in awe because they are often inspired by the divine. Humble and rustic windows, on the other hand, evoke feelings of familiarity associated with daily life. I am comforted by their simplicity. Weekly Photo Challenge: Window |

Weekly Photo Challenge: One

I have seen all but one statue of Kamehameha. The statue in Kapaʻau, Kohala, Hawaiʻi is the most humble, yet most meaningful to me of the collection, since it is situated in Kohala, his birthplace. Kamehameha represents, for some people, ancient Hawaiʻi. The literal translation of his name is “the lonely one” and he is credited to unifying the Hawaiian Islands under one rule, a feat documented as never before attempted or accomplished by a chief prior to him. Kamehameha’s name is synonymous with strength, intelligence, and ambition and he continues to serve as an icon of the Hawaiian spirit. His pose in all of the statues that exist today are the same. He is a strapping man, donning a helmet and cloaked in a yellow cape, while holding a spear. The items represent his status as both a chiefly ruler and an accomplished warrior. Kamehameha was well-versed in ancient traditions and upheld kapu even after unification, yet he was well aware of external influence and the impending onslaught of foreign interests, so he adapted to function in both …