Category Archives: travel

Paradise – Haiku Sugar Mill – Maui, Hawaii

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Dave and I took off for Haiku, Hawaii today (on Maui). Owner, Sylvia Hamilton-Kerr, has completed a restoration of the old grounds. The once-thriving mill had sat crumbling and was a historical loss to all. However, it is now protected and able to be enjoyed by visitors. A tour is given to a limited number of guests a few times a week. You get a dose of entertaining history, amazing tropical horticulture, and breathtaking photo opportunities. Their fresh mango lemonade at tour’s end isn’t too shabby, either. Note the Breadfruit tree and its fruit. Its uses are many.

It is starchy and sugary when ripe and can be baked, roasted, fried, or boiled. I’ve had it as potato chips and as a thickener in a Hawaiian preparation of an octopus dish. Both were tasty. Interestingly, the sap from the Breadfruit tree (see the white drip above) may be used as a latex in caulking waterproof boating vessels, homes, and in chewing gum. That was new information to me.

Ms. Hamilton-Kerr has made a garden of Eden under a mango tree that is approximately 150 years old. Cool breezes blew through my hair as I soaked up the ambiance and beauty of it all. Vintage French ironwork and woodwork adorn walls, decorates walkways, and even hangs from the tree. My senses were overwhelmed in this area of the mill tour. Bird songs in the background and sweet scents from nearby blossoms were a treat for everyone present.

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The actual old mill structure is only 1/3 present but in what a presentation it is offered! Old World Europe meets Island Tropics. Sylvia married these elements into a unique and delightful piece of Maui that seems a million miles from the “real world.”

As a side note, Haiku Mill is a perfect wedding venue. I have seen many settings, as I am a registered wedding officiant, but none so much a paradise as this.

Vines and other lush vegetation cling to the old mill’s stone facade. The inside of the entry wall is as beautiful as the outside.

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Our tour group of eight lingered after the presentation was shared. We took photos, chatted, and drank our mango lemonade. We were excited to be offered for purchase a fresh star fruit and a jar of homemade mango jam. This gem of Maui should not be missed. Escape the tourist areas, and enter a world steeped in island history and a place of peace and tranquility ~

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A Funny Maui, Hawaii Volcano Day

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Aloha hoa! Our part of Maui (Kihei on the Wailea border) is as lovely as ever. Look at the color variations on this plant. Beautiful.

We headed toward Mt Haleakala yesterday. It’s the larger of two dormant volcanoes here on the island. It’s summit is about 10,000 feet above sea level. Pretty darn high in the clouds and vog. What is vog? It’s volcanic “fog” or smog that drifts to Maui from the big island of Hawaii. It consists of volcanic dust and gases. Thank you for the residual dry, intermittent cough, Mt Kilauea (the active volcano on the main island that IS always active – but is very approachable). Back to our Mt Haleakala trip . . . the vog hung atop and around the midsection the volcano. Here are a few pics of the vog, and it doesn’t move slowly like fog but very quickly.

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As we ascended the mountain, Dave’s ears popped, and I popped two Dramamine and two Ibuprofen for sinus pressure! After seeing one guy puking from his Jeep, I decided better safe than sorry. The roads were quite curvy. That combined with altitude changes from 2500′ to 10,000′ then back down again, it’s a recipe for feeling like poop if one is not careful. Add the fact that the temp at bottom was 81 degrees and was 57 and windy at the summit. Glad we took jackets with hoods.

I did see pretty trees on the excursion. Turns out, they aren’t native to the island and change soil chemistry. I speak of the Mexican Weeping Pine. It’s gorgeous, though.

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These pines are highly invasive and displace endemic and endangered species’ of other plants.

One funny sign we encountered (and believed) was this one:

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We passed it quickly as we turned a curve. I couldn’t believe my eyes. What WERE these Hookers? Native birds? Or was that what hitch hikers were called here? hitcher, hooker? I told Dave I was going to ask the park ranger when we reached the top. Thank goodness there was no ranger in sight for me to gab with. I can only imagine how THAT conversation might have played out.

“What are these Hookers I’ve heard about? Birds?”

“Excuse me, ma’am?”

“I saw a sign a ways back that hookers could be picked up in 800 feet. What’s a Hooker?”

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Okay, laugh if you must.

 

There were also NeNe geese here and there. They are the State Bird of Hawaii and make a soft sound like “Nay Nay,” so, were aptly named.

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It was a fun afternoon, and neither of us got motion sickness or a headache or fell down the side of the crater we were so close to.

Love ya!

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Maui, Hawaii Snorkeling – Ahihi Bay

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Aloha, readers! Dave and I have been snorkeling in this (Ahihi) rocky bay the last two times, and we love it. If I can stop grazing against jagged lava rock while I swim, I’d come away amazed AND unharmed. ๐Ÿ˜‰ It’s in the area of the large Lava Fields. We are in Kihei, so just go South to find the bay.

When the tide is a bit high, the water in this area is perfect for snorkeling. We go at 7 am and don’t have to fight anyone else for the perfect spots. People are encouraged to only step on sand and not the coral growing underfoot. It’s a lovely spot to see needle fish (I call them that because they’re long and thin and shaped like an icicle), angelfish, eels, and any others I haven’t researched names for yet.

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This bay is clear, blue, and invites you to stay a while . . . and we DID. Take another peek or two at Ahihi Bay!

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Isn’t it delightful? We’re going back tomorrow morning. Today, it’s off to an old mill in the town of Haiku. I’ll blog on it later, too! Have a wonderful day, and subscribe to this blog if you haven’t already. There are many more fun little experiences in Maui to come. Love y’all!

 

 

 

Maui Fun

Aloha from Maui! Yesterday, we did a bit of touristy things. We ate shaved ice with mango and pineapple flavorings (was gooood). In fact, if you see below, I didn’t take time to photograph the icy deliciousness BEFORE we ate them. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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After the sweet treats, we shopped at one of my favorite local spots. I call it “my bracelet store.” I don’t even know the actual name of the place. Last year when we were here, I bought several cute hemp bracelets with peace signs on them (hence, my bracelet store). Here are pics from that cute spot. And yes, I bought more bracelets, and Dave purchased a locally carved turtle and 3 handmade soaps.

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After shopping, we drove the entire road around the North Maui coastline (on the smaller section of the island). That is an entire blog post in its self. Today? We are hitting the beach. Not sure which one. Will let you know after we have our fun in the sun and salty water day. I forgot sunscreen yesterday and ended up with a pink nose. MUST remember it today!

Love you guys, and thanks for subscribing. Lots more to come. . . so stay tuned! If you aren’t a subscriber, please become one, and you’ll get the posts in your email. ((hugs))

Life in Maui, Hawaii!

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Greetings, subscribers and visitors! We landed in Maui (finally) yesterday noon Maui time. Our Central time zone is five hours later than Hawaii time. Of course, our sleep habits are a bit off. Do you like the Nene Bird sign? The Nene was endangered years ago, so Hawaii put it on a protected list. Now there are many, and they’re everywhere. They make the cutest sounds – whether you’re eating a shrimp taco, al fresco, or walking into a grocery store, you hear the Nenes. Wild birds (sparrows, small colorful pigeons, and others I haven’t identified yet) are also everywhere there are diners, and we eat outdoors often. It’s fun to share my lunch with a tiny, iridescent-blue-headed pigeon!

The plants here are also amazing. Yellow hibiscus, Hawaii’s state flower, lines the edges of shopping centers and restaurants (not the Oriental Hibiscus that has many more ruffle edges than the Hawaii hibiscus).

We’re off to Target in the small town next to ours. Need a small fan for the kitchen. We’re in a mother-in-law cottage in a lovely neighborhood. Our first night was restful, and this morning we’re ready to hit Turtle Beach for some snorkeling!

Stay tuned, friends, for more photos, videos, and info on how we’re living in Maui for a MONTH! And Please subscribe to this blog if you haven’t already. Love you guys!

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Vacations are Approaching!

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Hello, blog friends! It’s about time to hit Hawaii for a month. September will find Dave and I in Maui for the month. Thanks, T, for house sitting, and eat all of the chips/cola/popcorn/and ice cream you like. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I’ve got my earbuds in and am listening to a live webcam of the ocean rolling in on a Maui beach. It is sublime! I cannot wait to get there and LIVE there for 32 days. We found lesser expensive lodging, so we can stay for about the same price as our 5-day trip there last October. Yay for a month of eating tropical fruit, fresh fish, snorkeling, boating, hiking, ATV-ing, zip-lining, and writing on my laptop from quaint Hawaiian coffee shops nearby. Don’t miss my blogs coming up. I’ll blog or vlog on YouTube daily while there AND while traveling there. You’ll go along with us!

I saw two large green turtles from the webcam a bit ago. Made me miss that place so much. Just the sounds of the Pacific waves rolling in and crashing lightly on the shore make me long to sit beside it all. We will take our Go-pro video camera, my Sony video camera, my fancy Canon camera with macro lens, our iPads, and my laptop. Think that’ll be enough to capture some of Hawaii for you guys? Leave me specifics of what you’d like to see, and I’ll try to accommodate. Example, coffee plantation. ๐Ÿ™‚

First things first, though. We’re headed to Vegas July 9-12. I’ll also document that trip via blog and vlog on YouTube. Looks pretty, doesn’t it? We’ll be arriving at night, so I should capture some great shots from the plane.

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Hope you guys will give me ideas on where to visit and what to do while in Vegas, on this, my first time to visit! Love y’all!

Las Vegas in a Few Weeks!

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It seems appropriate to blog in MONEY GREEN today, as I’ll soon be heading to a mini-vacay in Vegas. However, this green is also a pukey color.

Ahhh, much brighter. SO, Dave and I are heading to Vegas for a 4 day and 3 night mini vacation next month. After the exciting news of agreeing to the initial deal that Hilton offered us, the first thing I think of is ‘Thank god for our house sitter. He’s always willing to stay over and babysit the pets and care for the house.’ (Thank you, T).

Moving on . . . I’ve never been to Las Vegas or anywhere else in Nevada. I was a Southern girl for many years. If the residents of a state didn’t realize that iced tea was supposed to be served with lots of ice and plenty of sweetener, I hadn’t visited their state. That’s all changed!

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The sights and activities in Vegas sound big, bold, and in-my-face. Yep, my kind of fun . . . over done! LOL. The older I get, the more bling I wear. I like it on my sandals, in my jewelry, and even in my toenail polish! Now, I’m not a gambler, so that shouldn’t be a huge waste of our money while in Las Vegas. I’ve tried slot machines but have only ever won $75 (which I played again until I lost it).

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Gambling makes me mad, really. I don’t like watching my dollars disappear each time I push the big lighted button in front of me. Know what I have at the end of the night? I have an empty wallet, a pissy attitude, and a voice in my head that says, “You knew you’d lose, idiot.”

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Ugh, onto a happy color now. I look forward to seeing new things and meeting interesting people. I love to fly and am an adventurer when it comes to exploring new towns’ music, theater, and plain old fun spots. After we return from Vegas, we’ll stay home for a couple of months before heading out on American Airlines on a 9 hour flight to Maui, Hawaii.

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I’ll definitely blog here and vlog on my YouTube channel about the Hawaii preparations and then the entire stay on the islands. You may see my YouTube videos HERE.

Right now, as of June 12, 2017, I only have half a dozen videos that include our last trip to Hawaii and the underwater life there. Soon MANY more to come! Please subscribe and keep up with my vlogs now. There will soon be many, and they will be interesting and most will be humorous.ย 

Love you guys! Thanks for reading! I’m getting new readers each week. XO!

And, uh, this green below may be the only green I get back home with from Vegas OR Maui. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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