Friday, September 19, 2014

Go make your memories

MM and I used to travel to exotic Asian destinations for our vacations.  In the past 7 or 8 years when we weren't at my parents for vacations, we stayed closer to home.  Since then, we've gone to Lana'i and Molokai and of course Kauai and Oahu. But more often than not, we have enjoyed stay-cations right here on our own beautiful island.  Our favorite spots are over in the district of Puna in the Pahoa and Keaau areas.  We have such great memories!  I was even lucky enough to take my mom and my daughter on two separate vacations to Puna where we relaxed Oceanside and enjoyed the sounds and sights of the crashing waves.  Within the next seven days, lava is expected to flow through the town of Pahoa where we've enjoyed many a meal.  Before the end of the year, lava will make its way over the cliffs into the ocean...forever changing the landscape as we knew it.

My heart is with those who are at risk of losing their homes or jobs.  Yet I am so thankful for the times that we had that are etched into my memories.

Life is way too short.  Go out there and enjoy it.  Make memories that will make you smile til your last breath.

A hui hou

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Finding My Muse

 Tomorrow I go in for my second knee surgery in seven weeks.  The first one went very well and I was amazed at my speedy recovery.  So going into this next surgery I wasn't nervous at all.  Until today.  Today I started feeling antsy and just a little stressed out.   I had a list of chores to finish up so that my house would be ready for me to not scrub floors or showers for a bit. 

I also had sewing to do for some of my wholesale accounts.  But instead....I just took a break!  I decided to turn the TV off and just enjoy my own company for a change.  I put away all of my "work" and decided to play!  I spent the whole day designing and sewing this bag and it was just what the dr. ordered!  It got my mind off the surgery because I had to concentrate on creating something new.  I am really loving this bag.  It has all the features you girls keep asking for including a zip top, bamboo handles, an adjustable shoulder strap, pockets pockets and more pockets!  I even sassed it up by putting zebra print lining inside that you only see when the bag is unzipped. 

Most of all I love this bag because for today, I felt like I had found my muse!  Sometimes, I spend so much time on mind dulling orders that I forget what it is like to design new things.  I miss how that feels to make something that thrills me and that I can't wait to share! 

It is still fairly early in the evening.  I still have time to scrub the shower tiles and mop the kitchen.  I'm grateful for this day and for the distraction that I was able to enjoy.  Tomorrow I have to fly to Oahu for the surgery.  Thank goodness I have MM! 

A hui hou

Monday, September 8, 2014

Redesigning an Old Favorite

 One of the very first bags that I became known for was my hobo style bag that I dubbed my "Kealakekua" bag.  I discontinued it for a few years and have just brought it back with some design updates.  In the past, I had two exterior pockets on the burlap, but, alas, I found that girls couldn't resist seeing how full they could stuff their bags and the stress it put on the burlap ended up in fraying and weakening the fibers. 

For the past year, I have been carrying a prototype of this bag to see how it wears now that I have removed the exterior pockets from the design.  I have also added an open zipper on the top and two interior pockets that are streamlined.  One has a zipper and the other is a cellphone/pen pocket. 

I have also added a layer of fleece and a different type of interfacing to all of the burlap pieces.  So far, the prototype has not shown any signs of wear!  Yay!  (and the crowd goes wild!) 

Now I know that not all of you girls are going to dig the ruffles, and no, not all of these bags will have ruffles, but this one does....and I LOVE it!  What can I say?  I'm a girly girl at heart! 

Where can you find this bag for purchase?  Well, funny you should ask!  Just mosey on over to my Etsy store.
So there you have it!  Only you girls who actually read my blog are getting the heads up about this bag!  Lucky you! 

Have a great week!

A hui hou

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Yin and Yang of Living on a Volcano

Volcanoes are interesting phenomenons.  Living on an island with active volcanoes is such an adventure.  MM and I recently drove to Volcano and spent the night in the lodge at the foot of the caldera of glowing lava.  It was truly awesome seeing the steam and red hot glow at night.  But that is the thing about volcanoes.  They are responsible for not only creation and enlarging our island, but also for seemingly random destruction.  It is this yin yang experience that can give you "chicken skin" and yet make you shudder. 
Fireplace at Volcano Lodge with Madam Pele standing guard over the flames
Right now, as of September 5, 2014, the east side of our island is experiencing a state of emergency, officially declared yesterday by our Mayor.  The Pu'u O'o volcanic vent is actively producing lava that is flowing towards the town of Pahoa, which is in the same area that was hit by Hurricane Iselle just a few weeks ago.  Unless, the lava changes course, it is expected to consume the first home in 4-6 days.  The lava is moving approximately the distance of a football field each day.  There are over 40,000 people who live in that area.  Soon the main road way is expected to be covered by the flow of lava.  
Over the past couple of days, residents over there have begun moving their livestock and making the tough decisions about what to pack up and take and what to leave when the evacuation begins.  
This isn't the first time that lava has disrupted lives on this island and it won't be the last.  However, it is sad and my heart goes out to those who have lost their homes and many belongings to Pele, the goddess of the volcano. 
In 1801, the area that is now covered by homes of the rich and famous known as Kaupulehu, was once a thriving fishing village of about 10,000 people.  Then the lava came and covered over that area.  People moved and started over. 
In 1986, on the other side of the island, near where lava is threatening homes today, was a town known as Kalapana and a town called Kaimu.  Kaimu and Kaimu Bay are now underneath 50 feet of lava rock.  The news media seemed to not be able to get enough of the images of people watching their homes burn as Pele's fingers reached out to the wooden posts supporting the houses. 
This time, the Civil Defense has promised to keep media and "looky-loos" away to give these families some privacy in their darkest hours. 
Please keep the people of Puna in your hearts and minds as they endure the prospect of losing their homes. 
A hui hou