Sunday, October 12, 2014

Malama Wao Akua 2014

Aloha,
One of my favorite shows is now hanging at the lovely Viewpoints Gallery in Makawao. In honor of East Maui Watershed preservation, Malama Wao Akua celebrates it's 10th year Anniversary Art Exhibit. 
 The focus of the show is to raise awareness about native forests and endangered native species on Maui Nui. Viewers and artists learn more about the importance of a healthy watershed through this show. Educational opportunities are offered in conjunction with the show.  Environmental experts share their knowledge, experience and expertise  to hopefully increase public awareness.
Malama ( To Protect and Preserve) East Maui's Native Hawaiian Forested Watershed 's rainforest and primary water source, has been the mission of East Maui Watershed Partnership. This partnership , created in 1991, is a combined effort between federal, state and private land owners with the common goals of controlling invasive species and animals, and education through outreach.
The subject matter I chose was the watershed flume delivery system which is being replaced after 70 years to conserve precious water. The low  clouds and water leakage create a misty rain forest environment  where the native forest and watershed thrives.

I was happy to have my piece "Where the Spirits Dwell" chosen for the show.  This was the only relief print in the show, and I received kudos from 2 master printmakers, which was exciting. My style of multi layering, combining techniques isn't always successful, but, it is certainly becoming recognizable. I like the depth and story that is created.
Elementary  and High School students enter the show as well, and often my favorite pieces are in this collection. They are bold and creative, and it's nice to know the kids in our schools are learning about Maui's native species.
The show sometimes is literal with many pieces depicting native birds and forest scenes. The images are beautiful, and, I like shows that stimulate the viewer . I had hoped to see more conservation efforts and  environmental challenges in the artist's presentations. It is a successful show and there is much to be learned about our fragile eco system through art, song and hula.


Malama Wao Akua
Malama ka Aina

 To all the wonderful folks who work so hard in protecting our environment......Mahalo!



Friday, September 19, 2014

Mornings at the Inn

Aloha,

One of the things I have learned in life, and as an Innkeeper, is that one never knows what the day will bring. I guess that is true for most of us, but,  waking up to a breakfast table of new faces on a daily bases has given me the ability to be ready for just about anything.

I recently had a  full house, with lovely guests from Washington D.C. , the Big Island, and two guests from Oahu on a magazine shoot. It was rather humorous knowing my morning ritual was being observed through a lens.
 Because I knew it was scheduled,  I made an effort to look like I had been awake for more than 10 minutes before greeting the public in my kitchen. Even so, I am quite casual with folks, that's my style. 
No pressure, just comfortable breakfast. I do make an effort to keep up conversation until I can see that people are easy and relating. Breakfast is never boring, and often quite enlightening, sometimes challenging. This particular morning I am referring to was just plain funny. The photographers did ask permission of the other guests before snapping their pics. Not a normal day, just another interesting day.

The morning light is soft and it is usually a quiet time for me as I pick and cut fruit and reflect on life. While prepping, I talk to my canary, Manu.  He turns his head, maybe tweets a bit and hops in his bath. If I am really lucky he will sing me a lovely morning song....he has to be in the mood, and often times, a little quiet NPR gets him relaxed and ready for a song...especially opera. He also loves the sound of the blender.....He has a large dwelling, and it is high up away from people  in the window. If folks get too close, he makes his alarm sound so I know he is uncomfortable. He is an easy morning companion. 

We've had a warm spell for about 10 days now...our falls are like that....It feels a bit crisper this morning, and that is always welcome.

May today and tomorrow be good days for you. Life is full of daily challenges, some outcomes are great, others , not so great....but, it just keeps on rolling, and we will see what today brings. 

Love the simple pleasures of life.

With lots of Aloha, a hui hou.

Cherie

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Obon Festival

The Obon Festival is coming to a close for the year.  I always think of summer and Obon as a very special season, a joyful time to express gratitude to those who have come before us.  I have friends, neighbors and relatives that are Japanese.

Obon is a  Buddhist tradition that honors one's family ancestors and appreciate their sacrifices in life. These ancestors are said to visit their relatives during the festival. Families gather at their relative's grave and clean the sites. A show of reverence to those who came before  is such a touching display of  acknowledgment and respect. 

The colorful Obon celebration, features exuberant Taiko drummers( one of my favorite parts), and local food booths as well as the Bon Odori, a folk dance to welcome the spirits of the deceased. Dancers are meant to set aside self conscious thoughts and dance without ego or concern of how they look.

Regardless of religious affiliation and culture, all are welcome.  I always feel comfortable and enjoy from the side lines the circle of colorfully and traditionally dressed dancing participants. I know all are welcome, but, I still have not gotten up enough nerve to step into the circle yet. I honestly enjoy sitting in the temple in quiet contemplation for a little while during all the merry making outside.

 Many participants wear the light cotton summer kimono called the yukata, or the happi coats. Young and old, formally trained and folks just winging it, all gather in rings around the central raised platform called the yagura. The songs of the folk dances often tell stories of traditions of fishing and farming. Even though I do not understand the words, the spirit of joy is obvious.


Come as you are to Obon, honor your loved ones and be grateful for the joy in our lives.

With Much Aloha,
Cherie




Thursday, August 7, 2014

" Have a Good Hurricane"

Aloha,

It's been a roller coaster this week as two hurricanes have been marching their way across the Pacific towards Hawaii Nei.
Our Aloha greeting today was " Stay Safe", and I even heard,  "Have a Good Hurricane"...which actually sounded appropriate at the moment.

Storm Prep was the Hot Topic of the week, with some folks cleaning out the shelves in the stores and others complaining about the diehard hoarder attitude that hits Hawaii every time there is even a remote chance of a natural disaster.

I had a chuckle with a mainland newscaster poking fun at our "whateva" point of view. 
I was wondering who he interviewed. The long  lines at Costco were prompted by a Hurricane special on gas with people arriving well  before the doors opened. It made more sense to me to drive a couple blocks and get gas for a few cents more with no lines.

Typical Hawaiian Hurricane Shopping List 
50# bag white rice: check
2 flats of bottled water: check
cases of beer: check
batteries: check
and Hawaiian currency, lots of toilet paper, : check

 I waited a bit late to get D batteries , and there were none left Upcountry today. I was told they were flying some more D batteries in from Oahu and they would be available in the afternoon. I gave up and figured  10 flashlights at home was enough anyway. Shelves were very, very empty and most folks took their few days of prep quite seriously

I made a great soup today, did a few other preps, and am all set.

We all were quite hopeful that this system would do the normal fizzle out in the colder Hawaiian waters. The wind sheer usually tears hurricanes apart prior to landfall. When Hurricanes turn into Tropical Storms, we all breathe a little easier.

Iselle is hanging out off shore on Big Island and we on Maui have been feeling the outer bands of high winds and alot of rain. Our wonderful large volcanoes on Hawaii island, Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa are what I have always considered the Guardians. High winds hitting the mountains causes all kinds of disturbances. Wind rips down the slopes and and water builds up in the streams overflowing  causing flooding.

It's interesting to have updates on my phone, FB, TV with every expert and advisory and satellite pictures flooding the airwaves. The wet and brave live reporter in Hilo is giving a blow by blow description of rain and wind with the Coqui frogs chirping away in the background. It's a little bit humorous listening to her trying to figure out what else to say about the circumstances as the frogs are almost as loud as she is.  I am hitting overload. These newscasters must be exhausted.

 If I stand on my lanai, I know it's real deal storm, and we'll all feel much better when the morning comes and it moves up the island chain. We'll see what daylight brings.

May the night pass swiftly with no significant damage, and may all stay safe and sound. 


Aloha, Cherie

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Staying Safe in Hawaii

Aloha,

 A Tropical Depression named Wali has been visiting our islands for the last 24 hours. Maui did not have much damage, with only 3 inches of rain. Oahu received 14 inches during the same 24 hours with  flooding, property damage and many streams overflowing.

I'm sharing this weather update today in order to help illustrate the theme of this post. Staying safe while enjoying our magnificent and varied environment should be at top of mind for all, kama'aina and visitors alike. I always share safety tips with my guests, but since many folks on Maui don't get to chat over Hale Ho'okipa's breakfast table, I thought this post might be helpful.

From being a long time  paddler, former distance swimmer and surfer, I know first hand how the wind can pick up,what storm surf can do, and how inexperience, over- confidence, and inattention can mess up a fun day.

We have lots of sayings here that are meant to get people's attention and save lives. We use them often.

"When in doubt, don't go out.
If you are on the beach and uncertain about conditions, do yourself a favor and stay out of the water. One clue to help with a decision, take a good look at who is in the water, if anyone. If it looks like  Hawaii teens are tearing it up in rough surf, enjoy the show from dry land. Many of our beaches do not have life guards, find out if the beach you are on has a guard on duty, or not.

"If it's brown, stay out." 
 Mauka ( mountain) run off from heavy rains will often cause mud and debris to end up in the ocean. Pesticides and other yuk are hazardous to swim in, so do not go into brown ocean water. Sharks can be more of a threat in brown water as well.

"Turn around, don't drown." 
This is an important message for people on foot and in vehicles referring to stream crossings. Rivers swell from heavy rains causing flash floods and slippery dangerous conditions. If it's raining hard, do not try to cross, wait it out, or turn around.

"Don't turn your back on the ocean." 
We have a beautiful beach in the south called Makena Beach. It's a long stretch of paradise with a Shore Break. At first glance these waves may not look threatening, however when they roll up to the beach, they arch up and bam! break right on the sand. If someone has their back to the water,  this could quickly become a tragic scenario. If a body boarder miscalculates when to pull out, it could be also be bad news. Even experienced body surfers get injured on shore breaks. Ask an Ocean Safety Life Guard about conditions.

"Stay on the Trails." 
Large boulders can and do become dislodged on steep inclines especially if it's wet and muddy. Scrambling up rocks on steep hills is not a good idea. Stick to the foot paths and trails, they are there for a reason.

"Save the outing for another day if the weather is in question.  "
 It may make all the difference to wait for better weather.
Without knowing all the details due to this latest tropical disturbances, I can say that some snorkelers got into severe distress  this morning while the storm was in our neighborhood. This could have been avoided by waiting for a better day.


"Hawaii is not Disneyland." ( My personal saying) ..Hawaii is, Mother Nature, raw, wild, beautiful, calm, challenging, and everything in between to be respected.
 Respect the 'aina ( land)  take care of ocean (kai),  and please, always use common sense.  


"Safety First" ( and last!)


With Warm Aloha,
Cherie

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Windermere Community Work Day at Hawaiian Islands Land Trust





 
Windermere Valley Isle Community Work Day Ohana

Aloha

Every year, Windermere Valley Isle Properties closes it's offices to make a positive difference in our community. I hang my hat with Windermere for their commitment and action to give back to Maui.
On June 20th, with our working clothes and  lots of sunscreen, we  headed out to one of my favorite places on Maui , the Waihe'e Coastal Dunes and Wetlands RefugeOwned and protected by the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust, this 277 acre refuge is one of the most beautiful places on Maui.

This coastal wetlands, dunes, marine shoreline,  reef systems and bird habitat is a cultural , archaeological and recreation preserve.
The volunteer programs and staff continue active restoration programs enhancing  the native  habitat.
 Yesterday, we worked to eradicate two invasive species in the sensitive area adjoining the wetlands. We were told that all the sharp invasive poppy we pulled would be back in a month!  However, in the last three years, the continued assault on these weeds is working.
As the ecosystem improves,  endangered species are again flourishing at the Refuge.

The wetlands are now mostly cleared. The native plants are thriving, attracting many native Hawaiian bird species, including ae‘o (stilt), alae ke‘oke‘o (coot), koloa (duck).  Even the beloved nene (goose) are returning.
The beautiful Waihe‘e shoreline is a safe haven for the endangered Hawaiian monk seal. Green sea turtles make their nests along this pristine shore. 

A few years ago I brought my Grandchildren out to the dunes so they could experience the art of volunteering and learn about our precious dunes. We harvested Naupaka seeds and planted native shrubs. Yesterday, I enjoyed seeing those same plants thriving in their native habitat. 

When my guests, at Hale Ho'okipa, are interested in volunteering on their vacation, I often send them to this refuge as they have daily volunteer efforts and also educational walks. Check out www.volunteer-on-vacation-hawaii.com for other opportunities if this is not your cup of tea. One needs closed toe shoes to spend the day here.

Restoring and protecting our environment helps me to restore my committment in doing the good work for our planet. As I've said before, 
" Doing Good Feels Good."

Aloha,
Cherie





Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Upcoming O' Summer Sale

Aloha...

  Summer Travel brings a bit of a lull to the Visitor Industry. The Snowbirds have flown back to their nests, and Residents are tightening their belts a notch after the winter months, but happy about the ease of parking availability.

This year, our spring with it's late start, promises to roll into a green and vibrant Summer.  There are still nightly trade showers, and the trails are a little muddier than usual. With the rains, all the rivers and streams on the island can  quickly change into roaring waterfalls not to be crossed.  It's the wild and wonderful world of nature that will awe and inspire all those who take the time to explore.  After our wet winter and all the Mainland summer heat, I believe Hawaii will be a welcome change to folks looking for a summer vacation.

  It's time to offer my Seasonal Savings. Whenever I offer the O' Summer Sale: $10 Off Per Night, I like to highlight local eateries, shops and events where the savings can be applied to round out vacation fun and support local small businesses.

June 1-30
August 1-31
Sept 1-30

Savings are fun...check these out:
Here is a FRESH new item available to my guests. R.I.P.E. Juice Maui will deliver to Hale Ho'okipa Inn, fresh, cold pressed organic greens juice for   $20 a quart, with a 48 hour request time. Personally, this is my new all time favorite healthy thrive food. I drink four quarts a week, and feel sooo great. Stay healthy while traveling.


Poli's Mexican Restaurant in Makawao will gladly offer you two Margaritas at $4 each with chips and salsa at Happy Hour. With chips and tip, a bit over your $10 nightly savings, but, after two Margaritas whose counting change?

Haiku Style a colorful little gift shop in the Haiku Marketplace, has many wonderful gifts of all things made in Haiku. Claire displays Maui made soaps, key chains, cards, bamboo whistles, bracelets, a wide variety of fun things locally made for $10 and under. GREAT place to spend your savings and more, supporting many local small businesses while finding unique gifts to take home.

Makawao Garden Cafe , located next door to the wonderful Sherrie Reeve Gallery, has got to be one of the mellowest,  friendliest and most affordable place for lunch in upcountry. Kathi makes onolicious salads and sandwiches. Take a load off, enjoy your lemonade and lunch, and watch the local wildlife. A Hawaii outdoor cafe would not be complete without the occasional hen and chicks cruising around looking for handouts.

I could go on and on about what to do with your savings,

La Provence melt in your mouth fresh French pasteries in Kula

It obvious to see that people in Hawaii like to eat, and I haven't even covered local plate lunch grinds!
So, book your Summer Fun, stay at Hale Ho'okipa Inn Makawao, save some kala (money) spend some kala (money). 
But, remember the most beautiful things on Maui are free. All you have to do is respect the aina ( land)  and enjoy the kai (ocean) and a memorable vacation is yours.

Aloha and See you soon,

Cherie

Monday, May 5, 2014

Makawao Maui

Aloha,

Today the quirkiness of Makawao made me laugh right out loud. Standing in line at my local post office listening to 4 crowing roosters, being mailed to the Big Island, I was reminded of the saying "Only in Hawaii."  At first, I thought it was somebody's very loud cell phone ring until I saw the "Live Bird" stamped boxes lining the back wall.  A sweet little girl  waiting with her dad, would  throw her head back and crow along with the confused birds. The whole PO was in stitches while the Portuguese Bird Man was nonchalantly filling out his required paper work.

For many years, I have described Makawao as "The New Age Meets Local Paniolo Cowboy Town". I still think this is a good description of my little town.
From the  post office, my next stop was Rodeo General Store for  an afternoon treat. Out on the sidewalk there was a table set up with a Live Food taster tray artfully arranged.   Raw Food Sprouted Seed Burgers topped with locally made raw mustard was being offered to passerby's.
Rodeo General Store remodeled their establishment a few years back, vastly improving the menu, quality, selection and interior of the shop. Their salads are great, and the hot bar boasts delicious pasta take outs. The folks are friendly and they also offer an amazing wine selection in the back room.

On the opposite side of the street is a cream filled doughnut lover's magic Cream Puff heaven. Kamoda's Bakery has been famous for their baked goods for many, many, many years. Early mornings find sleepy locals and excited visitors standing in line waiting for the doughnut doors to open. My guests sometimes grab coffee and go to town to pick up fresh pastries to bring back to the breakfast table to share.

For women who like to shop, Collections is one of my favorites, as well Holiday , Altitudes, Mercantile, and Hurricane really do have wonderful and unique clothes for all, budget conscious and spendy.  

Hale Ho'okipa Inn also reflects the diversity found in town. We have our gluten -free- sprouted- no- wheat bread , tea sipping breakfast folks. While also at the table are guests reveling in gooey sugar puffed pastries from town, guzzling coffee to kick start their day. I like to eat very healthy, so I make sure that I offer and serve food that makes sense to me. But, hey, the whole point is, there is something for everybody.

Rather than judging our differences, I try to remember to Embrace our Differences. Humor goes a long ways in acceptance of all of us. The diversity we find in a 20 mile radius to Makawao is rather remarkable. If you want to live in a humble hale with roosters running through the yard, or a gracious older plantation home, or newer digs appointed with pool, Makawao has it all. 

Whether  you are in town for a yoga class or a rodeo, it's All Good.
See ya in Makawao, our unique and fun little town with "A Sense of Humor and Place", and a whole lot of history.

Aloha for now,
Cherie

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Spring Season Maui

Aloha,

It has been  a  very wet and windy winter and spring  this year on Maui. The mountain grasses are taller than I have seen  in many years. My yard and fruit trees are flowering and getting ready for a bumper yield.  All the avocado trees Upcountry are completely covered in blossoms and my mangoes are growing larger by the week.
We are so fortunate that our reservoirs are now full to the top. Regardless of the extra work and hassles of rain and mud, there is something very reassuring about the abundance of water. I keep envisioning the aquafir  increasing the fresh water level as all this sweet rain filters through the porous lava rock.

I don't know if there is a more beautiful time of year to visit Hawaii.  The glorious Jacaranda trees are starting to bloom. The  harbinger of Spring, one very large purple blossom covered tree, is now in it's full glory. This particular tree on the Lower Kula Highway, is larger than most, blooms earlier than all, and stays in bloom longer as well. The purple highway is still a few weeks away from wowing all those who are lucky enough to drive our beautiful stretch of upcountry Maui. Before long, the road will be lined with blooming Jacaranda. Even our local residents like to roll Upcountry this time of year for a view of the emerald green pastures dotted with bright purple trees.

This weekend was one of my favorite events in Haiku, the 21st Annual Haiku Ho'olaule'a Flower Festival.This is a very well attended event with visitors and kama'aina  happy to spend a day with ohana and friends sharing some good outdoor fun.
 Despite the occasional showers, everyone was enjoying the Keiki performances and foot stomping local bands. Home style nurseries,  flower and vegies growers displayed their wares in attractive booths. Today I purchased a few unusual Antherium blossoms, hand painted greeting cards, and some unique, affordable locally made jewelery
If you want to experience the lushness of nature , the sweet scent of flowers and some locally grown ono food, come visit Maui during our quiet season. Off season travel is so relaxing. It's easy to park in town and at the beach, the sunsets are vibrant and our island home is a happy place to be.
Aloha, a hui hou,
Cherie

Thursday, April 3, 2014

In Support of Maui's Keiki

 Maui's Keiki need our support!! 
I have been moved to tears on a few occasions listening to the wonderfully grown young men and women of Maui who were At-Risk Kids and grew up to THRIVE due to the support, help and love from the Maui Boys and Girls Club.

If you are on Facebook, please, please take a minute to vote for the Maui Boys and Girls Club. We are so close to winning the $25,000. Charity Challenge on behalf of my Real Estate Company, Windermere Valley Isle Properties.

 We have today and the half of tomorrow to pull this off. We are behind because of a huge push from the California group. We exploded in the last few days and we need to double up our efforts for a few more hours (OK 30 more). Please vote and share with all your friends. This young girl and 5,000 others like her are the ones who benefit. It only takes 30 seconds. Mahalo!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

For the Love of Annie

Sometimes, we are fortunate enough to experience an uncomplicated devoted, unwavering,  love.
This quality of love, in the form of a goofy faced little mutt named Annie, brought happiness to many.
Six years ago, I received a call from a neighbor who worked at the local vet. He told me, " I made an appointment for you to meet your new dog,"  In disbelief at his bold move, I retorted,  "What!!?"  He went on to explain why I needed to keep this appointment with destiny.
  There she was with a  terrier face, long eyebrows and ear hair,  quite the underbite, and a shaved little greyhound body and stilts for legs.
When we met,  she started racing around the yard, dodging obstacles   like a pro on an agility course. I was tickled at how much fun she was having. She clearly needed space to move, and my yard had it.

I agreed to keep her, hoping it was not a crazy mistake. Annie, it turned out, was scared of everybody, except me. Like so many other rescue dogs, her trust in humans had to be restored. I figured a bed and breakfast where all the guests miss their own pets would make a good home with lots of loving attention. I instructed guests to turn their hands up when wanting to pet her, to be slow and get a bit closer to her level. In time, she allowed others close to her. When  responding with trust to someone, she would turn sideways to their legs and give a slight lean in their direction.
She often hid between my legs and became my shadow. If she could not physically follow me, her eyes did, she never let me out of her sight. I would see her stand on two legs, turning circles with her nose in the air trying to catch my scent.
Because she was a runner, going for hikes and adventures was her favorite. When my friends  arrived, she would start talking to me while doing an excited sideways shuffle...."look who's, here, look who's here!!......let's go, hurry up, there are trails and beaches out there,  I NEED TO RUN, , don't forget my ball...I'll wait in the car, come on, LET'S GO!!"

As her enthusiasm for adventure and interaction grew to a level that made my heart sing, I witnessed some touching relationships form. People loved her, she loved them. It was a circle of puro amor, simply love. She gracefully taught herself  to contain the joy so her human friends could share it with her. She would sit, barely hovering, physically vibrating waiting until the right moment to unleash, then she would start the wiggle so her whole body wagged, not just her tail.

Annie was the gate keeper, the front line, nobody could sneak by Annie, nor would they want to. She would show off her favorite toy, prance around, and maybe try to engage a game of "You Can't Catch Me".

On her last day, Sunday, she jumped into my lap. With her long pointy legs, her snuggling was akin to snuggling with a fawn...cozy? ....not really, unique, yes. Sunday morning, she melted into to me, she leaned in with such trust, such calm stillness, I found myself thinking...".This is sweet, this is interesting, this is love." ..... pure and simple. 
Her trust healed my heart, and I will miss her.

Cherie

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Maui Real Estate Update

Aloha,
Happy Spring  2014.
It's been a lush and rainy winter,
flowers are blooming, fruit dropping
 from the trees, and the magnificent 
Humpbacks are getting ready
 for their return North.
I wanted to share what's  happening in
our Maui Real Estate market. We are in
a new year and well into our upward cycle.
Likely we will see a continued rise in the
market for the next 3-4 years.
Changes from
12/2012 to 12/2013
Maui Single Family , Condo
Annual Sales and Price

Click link for info and larger map
http://www.mynewsletterbuilder.com/email/newsletter/1411979821
Island wide for Single Family Homes there was
 4% increase in the number of sales, and a 13%
 increase in the median price.
For Condos a 6% increase in sales and  5%
increase in prices.
But the story is in the detail of area by area,
and in the inventory of particular areas.
Our inventory has been low, however, I do see
a small increase  in the last couple of months.
Sellers are encouraged by the up swing.
Even though prices are increasing,
First Time Home Buyers may still be
able to find a home in their range.
I recently closed a wonderful smaller
home on a great lot for some very
sweet Maui folks, this is what they said:
"Working with Cherie was an absolute
 blessing. She was very  much on top of
things,honest, and hard working. Always
available to answer questions, any day of
 the week, any time of the day.
She is number 1 in my book. "
 Mahalo it was such a pleasure, start to finish!
If you are thinking of retirement, first or
second home,let's work together to the  
finish line of the sale,
and the start of your new future.

Aloha for now,
Cherie



Sunday, January 19, 2014

Packing for Paradise, Maui

.Aloha,

As an innkeeper, I've had  lots of opportunity to  interact, advise and share with travelers. Twenty years now of helping folks unload  bleary eyed and weary from their journey, I can spot a seasoned traveler as soon as the trunk pops open.  Out comes  a compact carry- on or a double wide suitcase that barely make it through the front door.

 A seasoned traveler often goes in for the casual look that we in Hawaii have perfected. We are not big on  gaudy resort wear. We like to dress up for dining or the theater, and that means shoes, not  rubber slippers on special occasions.
We always joke that anyone can tell who lives in Hawaii on a chilly day. We are the folks with the Ugg boots, fleece vests and neck scarves on when the temp dips below 70 degrees.
 On winter mornings when I bundle up to walk across the parking lot to make breakfast for guests, only to see the early risers in shorts and t-shirts, I always  chuckle. Honestly though, many folks are happy to have a pair of socks to slip on in the house first thing in the morning. We are Upcountry and having some sort of layer for Upcountry climate is a wise addition to packing.

Haleakala Crater Hiking Needs:
 High top Hiking Boots are recommended. Some like to hike in less rugged footwear, and for these folks, I highly suggest the use of tube socks with the toes cut out to slip over shoes  as a gator to keep out the jagged cinders on the 11 mile trail.
Gortex unlined top layer that repeals rain and blocks wind is very handy as the weather changes all day long while inside the crater.

Haleakala Sunrise visit : I have a few warm jackets of varying sizes for my guests, as well as small fleece blankets for extra wraps. It is very cold at sunrise, bring long pants and layers..but , no need if staying at Hale Ho'okipa Inn to bring a heavy jacket. If you are staying elsewhere, bring a warm outer layer for the mountain peak.

Beach Needs:  Leave the beach towels at home, as they are bulky,  inexpensive and readily available to purchase here. I offer them to my guests, the large hotels also make them available. 
Beach Mats are the best for relaxing on the sand, and can be purchased in variety and grocery stores .  
Sarongs are also great for beach cover ups, work as towels in a pinch, and can be worn in a variety of ways. I must have 20 sarongs and have used them for everything from car seat protectors, to baby blankets and window coverings.
Caps or Visors are really nice to have on the mountain or on the beach, and purchase options are plentiful. The tropical sun is much stronger, so protective head gear is advisable. 
Snorkel Gear is very inexpensive to rent and easily available to purchase.  Plan on getting your gear here to  save lots of packing space and travel lighter.

T-shirts: We wear them anytime and anywhere we can get away with it. No need to bring lots of T-shirts with you, as you can choose from a huge variety of t-shirt purchases on the island. Quality T's are always found in  the many surf shops, as well as  boutiques. 

Camera: No brainer, it's whale season, and in every direction one looks, there is something beautiful to photograph.

Special Food Needs: I can safely say, that  whatever your special food needs may be, you should be able to find it on Maui. Maui is an island where lots of folks who have dietary concerns, live and visit. I have sung the praises of Mana Foods before, and will do so again. Gluten free, Dairy free, Soy free and whatever else is a concern , can be found here. There is also a Costco by the airport for those who want to buy in bulk. I had a guest once who packed a full suitcase of soup cans. I was speechless when I realized that he lugged 25lbs of soup cans across the ocean .

Maui is one of the most beautiful places in the world. We are blessed to live here. 
Visiting our islands is enjoyable and relaxing. Packing for paradise is easy,  and hopefully some of my tips are useful.

Aloha,
Cherie



Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Makawao History Project, A Village and 15 Days


A wonderful new addition has come to Makawao Town. It took A Village and 15 days to create the Makwao History Project.

We got the keys to the space on Nov 1st, spent a full day of cleaning, and went to work painting the space the next day with a hard working core group of volunteers . We were ready to begin the creation, gathering, and installation of the new museum on the 3rd of Nov.

I had the privilege of doing the installation with Darrell Orwig. Darrell was the Gallery Director of the Schaefer  Gallery at Maui Arts and Cultural Center for many years. In the art community of Maui, Darrell is held in highest regard. 


I laid out what I thought to be the most important areas to consider for the history of our community. The sections I wanted to see highlighted were, Makawao Town, Schools and Churches, Island Cultures, Pineapple and Plantations, Paniolo and Ranching. Darrell had the great idea to designate areas with graphic silhouettes which he drew and painted. He and I worked well together, and I felt so privileged to work with such an artistic ,creative , funny and experienced person. I made a friend for life. 

We also asked local artist Debrya Fair  to create vintage signs for each area.

Then, I spent a few days gathering memorabilia from the A and B Sugar Museum, my own home, Hale Ho'okipa Inn Makawao, and other private lenders.
 Eddie Flotte, my favorite Maui water color artist donated a series of his renditions of the old buildings of Makawao.  We also counted on the community coming forward with their treasures, and they did. Once we had the goods, we had one whole week to design and install!!! Others were busy planning the opening party,sending out invitations and researching all the memorabilia and donated photos.

Someone asked me why I was committing my time and energy to this project. I had some vague notions, but, it became crystal clear on our Grand Opening night.


An older gentleman was one of hundreds who came to our Grand Opening. I was touring a friend around and we were in the Schools and Churches section.  This elder  fellow was taking digital photos of a very old Makawao School pamphlet.  I asked him if those were his classmates, and he quietly replied, "No, it's my Sister." Tears sprung to my eyes and I felt humbled and satisfied .I instantly knew why I had invested so much in this project.

Our own Cowgirl Hall of Fame resident came into the History project  a few times with her treasures. They included a photo of her beloved husband, his bio and his well worn cowboy hat. Other elders have stopped by with their family and friends to hang out and talk story, and share their memories. One woman had tears in her eyes, she was sad that so much had changed, but she was delighted to visit the  Makawao History Project to see old photos and old friends.

There are still so many untold stories. Our Living Treasures will not be around forever, and they have so much to share. We have enough funding to stay open until Dec 31st. I hope we can make it through our busy season until the end of Feb, so that many of our Upcountry visitors are also able to enjoy the museum. If anyone wants to make a donation, please let me know, and I will happily give further details. We are staffed by volunteers, but, we need more rent $ and other expenses to keep our doors open. Lots more photos are available on our Makawao History Project Facebook page, and a website is also being created now. For those who read the Maui news online, more info is available in this article.
Check out our new video that is on Maui Akaku community television :video  It's a great video with interviews and our Grand Opening.

To give back to your community is a great joy. I am so very honored to have been a part of this Village, Makawao Town, my town.

With Aloha,
Cherie

Monday, November 4, 2013

Pi'iholo Adventures

Aloha,

My grandson recently came over from Big Island for a visit and we shared some great Upcountry adventures.
Aukai really likes to ride horses so we set up a ride with Pi'iholo Ranch on a beautiful sunny morning. I really enjoy Pi'iholo, they are first rate, take great care of guests, and the location is very close to Makawao.

Our horses  were sweet, Aukai really loved his friend, Buddy. We rode through pasture with amazing views, and  upcountry rainforests on the large ranch. Our wranglers, Tara and Meagan, took us by guava patches and my horse loved the guavas that Aukai  fed him. At one point, we had a cattle round up and Aukai  charged into the herd to get them back into the proper pasture and  behind closed gates. That was a highlight of our ride. It felt like we were working the ranch for a little while. This makes the third ranch ride we have taken together in lovely Upcountry.
                                                                                                          
The Pi'iholo Ranch is owned by the Baldwin family, a long time Panilolo and ranching family who have lived on Maui for many generations. Peter Baldwin founded the Pi'iholo Ranch with the help of his three sons.

We also had an exciting adventure on the Pi'iholo Ranch Zipline. Our friends, Jo and Olivier joined us for the day. Jo and Aukai were pretty brave, always jumping to the front of the line ready to zip away.
It was a short but beautiful walk in between zip lines. There are several lines, with the last one being really long, and very high. This was my favorite line as I was able to have a few of upper Makawao that I don't often get to see. 

 Our guides were fun, caring and very professional. I had been looking forward to the zip experience for a few years while waiting for my grandson to be the required 75lbs. It was worth the wait, and we all had a great time.
Pi'iholo Adventures did not disappoint. I am very happy to be able to recommend either one of these fun adventures to my guests.
Whooo..check out Aukai flying down the zip!
Have fun... Aloha..Cherie