Throwing a Luau!!!
ALOHA!!!! What better way to escape Vancouver’s cold + rain than to bask in the warmth of a luau!!! Read more
ALOHA!!!! What better way to escape Vancouver’s cold + rain than to bask in the warmth of a luau!!! Read more
I’m going to do a couple series of Hawaii pictures + reminiscing because Vancouver has been gray + chilly! Also it’s because when we were in Hawaii the azure sparkles of the ocean would be calling to me, “Shelli!!! Shelli!!! Get off that damn computer! Come play, Shelli!”. Thus, I feel those posts were a bit lacking, so let’s revisit the much glossed over luau night.
I know I already posted this picture, but it’s my favorite. So happy, so in lurve.
I also love the fact that before we got to the luau Kelly said to me, “You + Jeff are like Michael Jackson.”. I said, “Come again????”. She replied, “No, not in the pedophile way, but in the sweet, childlike, innocence you both have!”. Isn’t that really hilarious?! I love being compared to Michael Jackson.
Explanation of how the pig is traditionally roasted underground. I missed this part because I was already on the bridge to be first in line for drinks.
See? When I heard the guy say, “Everyone please enjoy…” I was already gone. I’m just a blur. I’m like, “Peace out!”.
Dinner, drinks + a show!
The bass player probably has a license plate that says, “I’d rather be fishing”. His face said, “Somebody get me another whiskey + soda.”.
The couple’s dance! My sister Ashley gave the MC our name to announce. This was only the second time Jeff + I did a “traditional dance” together!!! Jeff isn’t much into dancing unless it’s crazy person dancing.
Jeff’s first visit to Los Angeles was the first time we “danced”. Can you believe it?!
Ohhhh, sniff!!! Looking at these pictures again is making me sad! I had so much fun on this trip!!!!
The mothers got a golf cart ride to the hula performance. My mom was hanging off the back yelling, “Woo-hoooo!!! Wooooo!!!”, when they rolled up.
The “Japanese” part of the dancing was the best. It was so cheesy + wrong. I think I remember they called us, “Our humble brothers + sisters of Japan.”. Ah, so desu ka….
Liz + I called it, “Japanese Disco”, because their kimonos looked all shiny + synthetic even from stage! They were dancing all fast + nodding their heads a lot at each other. I was cracking up! Loved it!
The “Maori” girls are always my favorite with the fire lit poi balls.
And of course, the piece de la resistance of the hula – the fire dancer. And they always happen to be a chief from some faraway island. Uh-huh, ok.
We all had so much fun at the luau! There’s always haters that complain that it’s cheesy, not true to the cultures, the lines are long + the drinks are weak, blah blah blah. What do you expect!? It’s good clean, dorky, fun!!! I miss Hawaii. I’m signing off to go cry now.
I’m writing from Vancouver, but wanted to post some pictures up of our last day in paradise at our Puako house, in fond remembrance. The entire day consisted of AMAZING snorkeling (we searched + did not find our shark again, but instead swam with a school of unicorn fish), reading + hanging out with my turtle buddies. Paradise, indeed. I’m so sad to have left it, but now it will always be a special place where Jeff + I will always return.
Here is a photo I found on the internet which is a really accurate representation of the marine life we snorkeled with in Puako. I’m not even exaggerating.
We came upon a couple of turtles having their shells cleaned by surgeon fish + tangs. So exciting + fascinating to watch. Again, not our photo, but a great example.
When the turtles are munching at the moss underwater, every once in a while they would bring their little heads up for a breath. I would wait with anticipation for that moment, like the patient naturalist that I am.
This little piggy was chowing down like it was his last meal for god’s sake.
Out cold. A most uncomfortable looking snooze.
The day we left the island, I went outside for the last time to say goodbye to our beach + to my turtle companions. It was high tide + I saw a group of three having their breakfast. I became teary eyed + went back inside. I hope to return to swim with them again.
Ladies + Gentlemen, we celebrated the 36th Annual Waimea Paniolo Parade on Saturday, September 17th, 2011!!!! Jeff was up + ready! We drove 20 min inland + when we arrived in Waimea, I saw the crowds + tents + boy howdy did I start getting excited!!!! I LOVE festivaaaaaaals!!!!! Lobster Fest, Octoberfest, Scottish Fest, Swallow Day Fest….I could go on. It’s too bad my festival homie Debbie Im couldn’t be with us. In spirit, Debbie!!! In spirit!!!
Jeff found this Hawaiian western shirt couple days ago thrifting + wore a tiki bolo tie that he brought from his collection in Canada, just in case. Who knew it would become useful on this trip? Who knew? Jeff knew.
The parade begins!!!!! I’m going to organize the photos by section because we took so darn many. Hawaiian Royalty!!!!
Check out the court announcer singing with his gelled Jonas Brothers hair. And check out the kid in the red loincloth next to him giving serious stink eye!!!! Hah!!!
This guy is going to beat you down with a stick. In ancient Hawaii it was kapu (forbidden) for those of lower class to look upon the chief or cast your shadow upon him. The penalty is death. I think this guy is regulating!!!
These were my two favorite guys at the parade. How cute is the french horn player???
I picture this as my friends + I as we gracefully enter our sunset years.
Here come the paniolos!!! My heart was racing!!!!
Why sir, that is a very handsome moustache! Y’all know I’m a sucker for a hearty moustache!!!
Here are a couple of hunky paniolo pics for you ladies:
Lots + lots of adorable keiki (kids)!!!!
The Princesses! Each one represented a Hawaiian island. They would extend their hand from their mouths + softly say, “Aloha.”. After each one passed by, without fail I’d say, “preeeeettyyy”, like Lennie from Of Mice and Men.
The pink princess, I called the Nicki Minaj of Paniolo Princesses. She was all about it!!! Posing, waving, huge smiles!!! Girl was like, “Haaaaay!!!!!”!!!!
Here are some other highlights from the parade.
My favorite outfit with the whitelace gloves + jaunty woven hat. Sassy!
Let’s not forget the pooper scoopers!!! Each one had a different theme! Look! The driver is receiving a kiss! Poop + romance!!!!
The haole local ladies sitting in front of us did not appreciate this one!!! Oh my, no they did not!!!!
Jeff was obsessed with this kid because he had a drawn on moustache. Ole!!!!
After the parade was over, we went to the Waimea Farmer’s Market where Jeff had a fresh, homemade bacon sandwich. He pretty much was salivating over the lady making it + staring intensely at her (which I think freaked her out a bit), because we were staaaarved at that point. I really think it was wild boar that they killed in the hills because apparently the island is over-run with them + it tasted really, really amazing + fresh. I still think it was not enough food for a lumberjack, unfortunately as you’ll find out later in the post.
Sir, why so intense, sir??? Do you realize you’ve been on a tropical island on vacation, sir? Hello, sir???
At least SOMEONE was enjoying themselves!!! Sheesh!!! Island style, brah!!! Chill, mon!!! Someone bring me a Mai Tai!
After Jeff had a little food in him, we wandered to the park for the Ho’olaule’a for food, hula + fun. My recommendation to anyone going to the 37th annual Waimea Paniolo Parade is to skip this part. Great people watching, don’t get me wrong. But it was crowded as heck, the lines were insanely long for food + it is generally like herded cattle. We waited for $7 kahlua pork, they forgot about us + when we reminded them, they said they ran out of rice + the amount of pork given to us was like a melon ball scooper’s worth. Jeff was so irate but I felt bad for them because they seriously looked panic stricken + one of them was calling their auntie to bring mo’ rice.
Look at all those darn people! Moooo!!!
Princesses on their off time, hanging out in their jeans + drinking pop. This one princess in tan was probably related to Andre the Giant + was like 2 times taller than her husband. He + the baby were both wearing forest cammo tshirts. Bad ass Waimea style, yo!!!!
The good part is, there was a really crowded craft tent + Jeff bought a carved bone necklace by this old time artisan, Ika Vea who carved the pendant that Jeff chose + wove + braided the necklace while we hung out. It’s a very special handcrafted piece of art that Jeff is really happy about.
Here is Cranky Pants not so happy to be in a craft tent holding one of the gorgeous wood carvings Ika made that we now regret not bringing home with us.
Note to all ladies. Don’t take your significant others to festivals unless they’ve been previously amply fed. You’ll thank me later.
Sadly, I’m writing the ending to this blog post from Vancouver. Not sad, because I love Vancouver (we arrived at 2am to Tom + Deb’s last night), but sad because I miss my tropical paradise + all of my turtle family. I spent the entire last day in the backyard of our house at the beach. I couldn’t bear to be near the computer + had to fully enjoy our most amazing last day of the honeymoon. I will post more pictures of that last day tomorrow!!!! Sniff, sniff.
Today was the best day of the honeymoon so far!!!! I finally managed to sleep in, + this is what today mostly consisted of.
That’s right in our backyard, y’all. I’m sad because I think I had salt spray on my lens, so some of my pictures from today are a little blurry.
We did a good amount of snorkeling + it was like a GOLD MINE OF AQUATIC TREASURES!!!! Although, to our dismay, we realized that instead of my totally radical Japanese flippers that I bought at Waipouli Variety on Kauai, we had mistakenly grabbed flippers that would fit a 7 year old!!!! So, I had to go flipper-less + we swam out FAR, y’all!!!! The coral reefs were like a teeming city of fishies!!!! Like the Chicago World Fair of fish!!!! We saw a ton of humuhumunukunukuāpuaʻa, the longest word in the Hawaiian language.
Butterfly fish, dragonets, puffer fish, surgeon fish, yellow tangs, humuhumu’ele’ele, wrasses, etc.!!! As we were swimming around, along the ocean floor I noticed A SHARK slinking about!!!!!!! I was trying to be as non-conspicuous as I could be, “I don’t really see you, mister shark, do you see me???” while making minimal body movements. Jeff was pointing at it + so excited!!! I was thinking, “Be cool!!! Be cool, man!!!’!!! We surfaced + he asked, “What kind of shark do you think that was?”. I replied, “White tip shark”. Well, I’m a regular marine biologist, y’all, because when we got back to the house we did some online research + I was on the money!!!! White tip reef shark!!!!
Thank god they are non-aggressive. Shark bait. By the way, these underwater pics aren’t ours cuz we don’t have an underwater camera, but you betcha we are going to buy a disposable one tomorrow, after today’s bounty!!!! AAAAAARRR, avast ye yellow liver land lubbers!!!!!
Let’s just say swimming in white capped waters without flippers made we well worn out. The rest of the day we hung out, sunning ourselves with our turtle neighbors munching along beside us. HEAVEN, Y’AAAAAALLLLL!!!
Here’s one face down napping like a champion.
They get so pooped from eating from the algae buffet + dragging their fat little heavy bellies onto the shore, that once they manage – they just straight pass out. I can feel you, turtle brother. I feel you.
Jeff got antsy, of course + decided to yard work. Let me repeat, yard work on a rental house!!!! This guy doesn’t know the definition of RELAXATION!!!! My god, help me!!!!!
I was happy where I was, but since mister ants-in-his-pants wanted to go out for sunset, we went to Pu’ukohola Heiau. Built by Kamehameha I, on a prophecy that if he built this temple, he would conquer all the islands.
And by 1810, he united all the islands of Hawaii.
It’s been the most amazing day together. We are both so sad to see it coming to an end, but we are going to take advantage of this paradise to the end!!!!!!!!!!!
After our raging dance party, admittedly today was slow goings. Jeff was like a “jamby” – that’s how my mom pronounces “zombie”. Jamby! Jamby!!! We headed inland towards the the largest privately-owned cattle ranch (Parker Ranch) in the US which is located in Waimea (Kamuela). It is said that King Kamehameha III arranged for three Mexican cowboys to come to the Big Island to teach the locals about cattle ranching. Thus, the birth of the Hawaiian paniolos (cowboys)! Viva Mexico!!!!!
I had to take Jeff to one of my all time favorite dives, Hawaiian Style Cafe.
It is full on diner style cooking with plates heaped full o’ food!!! They are famous for their plate of kahlua hash, two eggs + fried rice – which is what Jeff devoured. Perfect hangover food!!! Just what the doctor ordered!!!
Note: good thing I did my calisthenics this morning because I am starting to get C-H-U-B-B-Y.
I didn’t really take many pictures of Waimea because we plan to be back for the Paniolo Parade on Saturday! I can’t wait!!! I love a parade!!!!!
If it looks like all we do is eat, well it’s true. We drove east towards the little town of Honoka’a to Tex’s Drive In. Home of the fresh out of the fryer malasada!!! Hot, doughy, sugar coated Portuguese heaven!!! I took a picture like this last year in front of Tex’s when I came with my dad.
You can get malasadas cream, fruit filled, or plain. I prefer the pure, unadulterated plain malasada. They are really hot + fresh, like pillows!!! http://www.yelp.com/biz/tex-drive-in-honokaa
We drove north west to the artist community of Hawi. Jeff took the Kohala Mountain Road which was windy + rose up high in elevation, making me very nervous + manic due to Jeff’s erratic driving!!!! Thus, no scenic view shots because Jeff was enjoying that while driving, as I was in panic mode keeping my eyes on the road from the passenger seat because somebody else wasn’t!!!!
We slowly meandered around tiny Hawi, browsing the art galleries. Happy hour at historic Bamboo restaurant + gallery.
Sorry for the non scenic photos today. We are a little worse for the wear. It’s Flashdance that really put us over the edge.
On our way home to Puako Fantasy (our glamorous rental home), we stopped for a refreshing swim at Hapuna Beach, which is the most pristine + swimmable sand beach in the state.
Yesterday + today were our first real days of relaxation since being in Hawaii. Hard to believe, I know – but with the wedding + our neurotic, hyperactive personalities we’ve been on the go so much!!! Now that we have our Puako Fantasy home, we are really going to stay put + take advantage of it for the rest of our amazing stay.
There’s my tiny little head swimming in the ocean + this wiry old chappie who was running lap after lap along the beach REALLY fast + spry!!! Stud!!!!
Another muscle competition pose by yours truly.
Wish you were all here.
Yesterday, do you all recall the drama we encountered with tractors + jackhammers right next to our Puako honeymoon rental? Well, after I called the rental management company leaving three very angry messages, the care taker who resides in the main house below came to sheepishly explain to me that even she was surprised by the construction this morning, as well. Verrrry suspect, considering it appeared that the work looked like it had been going on for quite a while. I asked her to get the scoop on how many days they planned to be working because I couldn’t deal with the noise because I come from downtown los angeles, yo + I do not need to be listening to generators + trucks backing up all day!!! I do not!!!!! When she returned, she said they were re-building the sea wall + would be working for the rest of the week. OH HELL NO!!!!!! I called rental management + asked them if we had other options. While I was angrily negotiating + hopping mad, here’s what Jeff was doing:
Enjoying a snack, y’all!!! He let’s me be bad cop because he knows I can be as mean as a hornet when I get fired up. I see how it is…
Guess what, folks?! They moved us into a house down the road – A HOUSE!!!!!! We went from a studio TO A HOUSE!!!! AND they gave it to us for the SAME PRICE as the studio!!!!! A $510 a night house for $225 a night!!!
Granted, the studio was full of character + super charming, but it was small – I had to shuffle things around to prep dinner + had little buggies hanging around. But, this house had a stove!!!! Washer + dryer!!! Dishwasher + tons of counter space!!! I felt like a housewife fromthe 50’s. Being a lady of modernity, I was seduced!!!!
Shiny!!! Bright!!! Sparkly!!!!
Also, there was a mezuzah on the doorframe, so we knew we were in the right place. For all not in the know, the mezuzah contains a parchment inscribed with specific Hebrew verses from the Torah. My mom will be so happy to hear about this! Shalom!!!!
Wraparound windows in the living room!!!
Reflection in the window from the porch.
The master bedroom with retro phone + Hawaiian quilt bedding!!! Love it!!!!!! By the way, I’m really not talking on the phone in this picture. I just like to pretend.
It’s kind of funny, because when we first got to the house, we noticed construction going on next door on a new home. I was going to flip. But Jeff talked to the guys + they were just building a deck. I can deal with some hammering + sawing over a jack hammer any day! The houses are far enough away that I don’t even hear them from the porch!!! Score!!!! Also, this is turtle central!!!! It is like a turtle cafeteria in our backyard!!! They are muncha-crunching out there, we swam alongside them + you can see their little heads surfacing the water all the live long day!!!
I like this cutie-patootie’s sleeping style!!! Snoozel noodle!!!
This adolescent is like, “Peace out, you old folks keep napping!!! I gotta motor!!!” Action Jackson over here!
Whoopeee!!!!! Wild card!!! Black sheep!!! The rebel, as they say!!!!!
Up the coast, Kohala’s ritzy, cha-cha-cha resort hotels. Oh, rather!!!!!
Let’s just say we spent the rest of our day enjoying the house to da max. After moving in + moving out of the old digs, we just wanted to straight up chill. If chill means doing 3 loads of laundry. That night, bartender Jeff blended some cocktails + fired up the 2 grills.
What a romantic!!! Jeff insisted on traveling with the tealights we had recieved for the wedding from the Catlows + meticulously lights them every night! He’s a better man than I!!! Oh, wait that didn’t sound right….
We blasted the radio + had a dance party in the living room! When Flashdance’s, “She’s a Maniac” came on, we tore it up!!!! We got so psyched, Jeff found a youtube clip – in german + we kept on dancin’!!!!!!!
Ja!!!Es ist so gut!!!! Enjoy!!!
Every day has been full of surprises, let me tell ya. Quick recap. Monday was a realatively mellow day hanging around the small towns of Captain Cook. Our view from Manago hotel room:
History buffs rejoice – the Kona Historical Society Museum is well worth the visit!!! It is set up at the foundation + the general store of the Greenwell family. Henry Nicholas Greenwell was an English entrepreneur who came to Kona + is known to have established Kona coffee into what it is today.
Our tour was conducted by a very, very interesting + knowledgeable educator + guide, Ann. She hung out in San Francisco in the 60’s, then moved to San Diego + has been on the Big Island for 14 years. Groovy, man! Inside the general store, we did an interactive tour of what it would have been like to shop in the store in those days.
Here’s Ann in her period costume. Isn’t she cute?! She had so much information about the land, the Greenwells + Hawaiian history that at the end of the tour, she became my hero + when I grow up, I want to be like her.
We returned to Pu’uhonua O Honaunau for sunset. Jeff went snorkeling, but I was cranky + cold so I opted out. Jeff said it was the best snorkeling he had done so far – turtles, large colorful fish, large coral! Yeah, I missed out.
As we left, we decided that Tuesday morning we were going to wake up early, come back to Pu’uhonua O Honaunau to go snorkeling before heading up north to Puako. Well, that morning when we got to the car, guess what we found!!!!!
Jeff was flailing his arms, yelling, “SHELLI!!! WHAT THE, WHAT THE, LOOK!!!! GO GET SOMEONE!!!!!”. When he gets really spazzy, I become reeeealllly calm. From what we remembered last night, there was a blue Ford parked next to us. The moron was still in the parking lot!!! There were blue scratches on our car, silver paint on his rear bumper – Jeff took measurements like a real detective. The owner + Manago heir, Dwight helped us out so much, we called the cops, had witnesses who heard the loud crunch at night – we had it in the bag!!!!! After running the license plate #, Dwight awoke the perpetrator who confessed to his crime. He was a really nice guy who had Tlingit tattoo art all over his face + dreads. To each his own. Here’s the three guys working it out. The cop was Dwight’s cousin. Small island.
We went to Kona Airport to switch out cars which was a pain in the butt. No snorkeling for us!!!! We were so upset by the morning’s drama that what did we do??? Thrift!!!! We encountered an AMAZING consignment shop near Costco called Sandra’s Consignment. We made out like bandits!!!!
OMG!!! I almost forgot! We drove down the marina, checking out all the fishing boats + as we were driving we spotted a HUMONGOID blue marlin hanging!!!! It was so huge, I thought it was a fake – like the Jaws hanging at Universal Studios!!!! We parked the car + RAN down with our cameras like crazy journalists!!!! This thing was 850 pounds + took the guys 45 min to wrestle!!! It reminded me of my dear old grandpa that I used to fish with, so I was really excited, out of nostalgia – but I kept asking this lady, “Isn’t marlin fishing illegal??? Wouldn’t you think this marlin is pretty old for it’s size?”. She kept shrugging her shoulders + saying it was legal in resort towns. Hmmmmm. Well, my research shows that blue marlin stocks are low + most recreational fishermen/women do a catch + release. So, it made me sad looking at this gorgeous, large dead creature who was probably so happy + majestic swimming around. I’m not going to post any close up pictures of it now because I’m super bummed out.
Okay, are you ready for some more drama!!!!????? We drove north to Puako to the rental house that we are to stay in for the duration of our honeymoon. We arrived at night + it is my 70’s dream house with lots of wood, blue tile + wrap around porch!!! This morning we awoke to the sound of the ocean right in front of the porch. Guess, what?! Around 8:30am this morning as I was writing this blog, we were unhappy to discover that there is construction going on right next door!!!! Generators, tractor, jack hammer – AAAAAAARRRRGGGGHHH!!!!! We are SO PISSED!!!!!! Can you believe it?! If you knew there was construction happening, why would you rent out the house?! I called the rental company stat!!!! I asked to be moved to another house or be compensated – they are going to call me back, so stay tuned………
I’ve made an executive decision to abbreviate yesterday’s volcanic activities. There’s too much to post. Let’s just say we encountered a group of people + the women + girls were all dressed in full length dresses + bonnets. I saw the father/husband/elder + one of the girls at the Hilo Salvation Army. Jeff + I assumed the girl was just a Laura Ingalls Wilder fanatic. But there was a whole group of them! Cult alert!!!! Jeff distracted the father/husband/elder by talking to him about “getting back to the land” + took a covert picture. I couldn’t even go near the father/husband/elder because he creeped me out so much + he was wearing dirty 70’s Lee jeans.
Then we drove down to the coast.
Yiiiiiikes!!!! The waves were POUNDING!!!! And the cliff edge was on the precipice of collapse!!! Those waves were POUNDING ON THE CLIFFS!!!! Oh, by the way, do you like my Sporty Spice outfit?
Did I say, “Yiiiiikes!!!!”????
After my fright of crumbling off a unstable cliff into the unrelenting sea, we walked down to the ancient petroglyphs. It was dusk when we arrived at the petroglyphs + it was really serene to be there under the full moon.
Today, we headed out of Volcano Village heading south-west towards the west coast of the Big Island. Our first stop was Punalu’u Black Sand Beach. Honestly, I was not the impressed, except for the large turtles that like to bask on the sand.
There was a sign clearly stating + illustrating for tourists to stay 15 feet away from the turtles. On the way back from the bathroom we saw some dumb ass tourists posing RIGHT NEXT TO THE TURTLES!!!! I was enraged!!!!!! I screamed, “Hey!!! Hey!!! Do you see this sign (as I pointed to it)???!!! 15 feet away!!!” Jeff had to take me away. The poor, harassed turtles. We met a couple local haoles on Punalu’u + they told us about a beach that is not on the map + is the perfect spot to see as far as the eye can see. I’m not going to divulge secret info on a blog but they said, “When you pass XXXXX, you’ll see some XXXXXX, and that’s when you’ll make a XXXXXX. It’s one of the best surf spots on the island. There is a man named Uncle Abel who is a Hawaiian institution + he’ll show you the way.” Sure enough, we got to the XXXXX + we saw 3 men chilling – I was nervous, but Jeff is friendly + confident in that way. We ended up hanging out with Uncle Abel, Uncle Joe + his son, drinking beers + talking story. Uncle Abel has been on his land for generations. The government has been trying to kick him off his land for decades + it is a constant battle for him. He was so wise, warm, kind, generous + spiritual. Here’s the bruddahs.
If you want to sign a petition to help Uncle Abel in his cause, here is the link: http://www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/freekawaafreehawaii
The road to the beach:
The perfect black sand beach. Punalu’u couldn’t even compare with it’s pristine coastline. We gave Uncle Abel a hug goodbye + kept on truckin’ towards Captain Cook – our final destination for the next couple of days.
It was verging on sunset so we headed towards Pu’uhonau o Honaunau, the place of refuge. Those who broke the ancient law or kapu would avoid punishment or execution by swimming shark infested seas to the Pu’uhonau o Honaunau + their wrongful deeds would be absolved.
Here was a lady trying to balance her chi or something:
Onwards to my home away from home!!! The Manago Hotel!!! My dad + I discovered it last year during my search for good butterfish at a restaurant. The Manago was founded in 1917 by a Japanese-Hawaiian family. A friend of mine from Hawaii was freaked out that I stayed there, stating locals know not to stay at the Manago becauase it’s infamous for being haunted, considering it was built on plantation land. Last year I rented a single, shared bathroom + granted, I was a little creeped out without even the knowledge that the place was haunted. Nevertheless!!!! I love the Manago!!! And I knew Jeff would too!!! Their restaurant is homey + comfort food style!!!! I specially reserved the only Japanese tatami room they had + it is SO worth it!!! The gal at the front desk remembered me from last year – so in!!!!
Luckily, the restaurant was open for another 15min. We had their famous porkchops. I’ve been dying for these porkchops for a year!!! I don’t know what it is, because they are a little chewy + the onions are slightly crunchy, but there’s something about these chops that are off the chain!!!! Always the yummy side dishes first that you have to dig into!!!!
Pork choooooooops!!!! The best dinner so far!!! It was so darn good, you didn’t hear a peep from us during the entire meal!!!!
Sake carafes from the kitchen.
This place is so old-school. Doll from TV room. Did I tell you this place is creepy, or what?!
The Japanese furo in our bathroom.
eff changed into his jinbei that my mom bought for him last summer in Japan for a staged photo shoot. Voila. Our room. The only Japanese style in the hotel.
It’s so amazing!!! It makes me feel like I’m in my grandpa’s house in Saitama-ken, Tsurugashima!!!! My mom would be so happy!!!
Jeff sitting next to the game of Go, an old Japanese strategy game.
Well, Jeff + I had a lot of strange adventures today. But I didn’t want to forget the 10th anniversary of September 11th. Please say a prayer for all of the families + friends that lost loved ones during the horrible tradgedy.
Hi!!!!! Yesterday morning we packed our little butts off at the Anini house. I’m going to miss the family so much!!!! I mean, is this irresistable or what?!
We rushed to Lihue Airport like bats out of hell. We didn’t make our flight, we were put on stand by + ran to the gate + prayed. We made it + were the last 2 on the plane! Of course I didn’t take any pics because I thought Jeff was going to burst a spleen. Here is our stop over in Honolulu Airport.
Here’s a tricky picture I took of the line of Japanese tourists waiting to get on the plane. They were READY, y’all!!! Tickets + passports out, y’all!!! That’s the way we do it!!!!!
We arrived in Hilo + checked into our hotel the Hilo Hawaiian. I knew Jeff would love it because it is funky + old school. This is the view from our balcony.
Hilo Farmers Market – hang loose, granny!!!
Will you be surprised when I tell you my dear readers, that we went to two thrift stores? You’re all aghast, I know. But it is a triumph when I convince Jeff that leaving a thrift store with only one gem + not 12 so-so items is a success. I found some sweet vintage muumuus, y’all!!! Check out the hot lady behind the counter in the purple bikini. Very Hilo. Hilo has alot of rough characters. Jeff was surprised by all the tattoos + thug like bruddahs.
Dinner at Ocean Sushi Deli. My family has been going there for many trips. It is relatively cheap + very local. They have never let me down before, but I wasn’t as impressed this time around. Still a really fun place to be, though!!! I still recommend!!!
Here I am irritable + impatient at Jeff who took my camera to adjust the white balance + ISO or somethinglikethat. I didn’t realize he was taking a picture of me. We were both tired + crank, y’all!!! Thus, the lack of good photos yesterday. Oh hey – but check out the cranky couple behind me!!! Classic!!!
Then, it was back to the Hilo Hawaiian for early bed!!!!!! More later!!!!!
The days after the wedding were a blur for all of us at Anini House. The adrenaline of the days leading up the wedding completely left us all spent. We lazed around the house + here are some things I’ve learned about kids.
#1 – they really, really love television.
#2 – they really love playing in hot tubs. They’d be like, “Shelli! Come play in the hot tub!!!!” + I’d be like, “NO WAY!!!!! The ocean’s better!!!!” + they’d be like, “No it’s not!!!!!” + I’d be like, “Yes it is!!!!!!” + they’d be like, “No it’s not!!!!” We would have those type of conversations daily.
#3 – I never realized how much they like Ichiban noodles. They ate it cooked or they would munch on it dry!!!! Keiko + Hana are so cute, it sounded they were calling it Itchy Bum noodles. So that’s what we all called it during the trip.
We all made a couple of family trips to Hanalei Bay. I don’t know why I didn’t take a picture of the actual beach. Here’s lunch at Pat’s Taqueria taco truck with my swimming buddy, Ambur. The kalua pork tacos were to die for!!!! FYI, future Hawaii travelers, they close at 3pm.
After, we had shave ice at the truck next door. It was ono! That’s Hawaiian for good, y’all.
We had dinner that night with my mom + dad over. The Canadian Lady Posse wanted me to highlight what typically happens during dinner prep. Let me enlighten y’all.
Ladies toiling over a hot stove + slaving away.
Oh look…..how interesting!!!!!!! Here, we observe the male species in their natural habitat. Beer AND snacks (provided by the ladies, of course!) Must be nice, guys!!!!!!
Jeff, mom + mother Jean
Okay, okay. The guys helped a little bit, too. They grilled, okay!!!! Sheesh!!!
Look who’s first at the dinner table again!
Jeff with his Moustache Gang!!!! How freaking cute is that???!!!!
The next day some of us went to Tunnels Beach.
Here’s Jeff uptight in paradise. Getting everyone out the door is like wrangling cats. Daphne + I had to have a cocktail while waiting for everyone.
The current was pretty strong at Tunnels, so Deb + Liz took the kids back to Hanalei. Jeff, Daphne, Tom + I went to take a hike on the Kalalau trail along the famous Napali coast.
It is a steep uphill for 3/4 miles, y’all!!! I cursed my short Japanese legs trying to keep up with the long ass legs of the Fayle family!!! But every step of the way was so beautiful!!!
The descent led us to Hanakapia Beach. This sign greeted us towards the bottom. Yikes!!!
River leading to the ocean.
I didn’t know there were Spider monkeys at the beach!!!!
AWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!! Jeff is such a romantic!!!! This is what he was making in the lava cave in the picture above. So sweet.
The road back home.
Bye for now everyone!!!!! Sorry there’s so many gaps in the pictures, I still don’t have a hang on this software!!!!
Sorry for the delay!!!! It’s hard to post when there’s 21 people in the house. I just want to hang out in the water all day, drink wine + sleep!!!!
After decorating the house, I went over to my mom + dad’s timeshare in Princeville to get ready. This is how the Nishinos get ready for the wedding. Watching the Kardashians + sleeping. Nice guys, real nice.
As I was doing my hair + makeup my sister asked me, “Shelli, did you do a trial run of your hair + makeup?”. To which I responded, “Nope! I’m hoping it all turns out!”. She was like, “You are so crazy!!!!!!!!”. I’ve done crazier.
At the house, Pastor Niles Kageyama + his wife Eileen had arrived. Jeff apparently was bossing people around while pointing + shouting. Like an art director or something.
The boys + their ginger stalk torches
My cutie niece flower girl, Ambur.
Jeff + best man Steve. Very affectionate, aren’t we boys???
Pastor Niles blowing the conch at the top of the ceremony. Mom + mother Jean looking on bemusedly. I wonder what they were thinking. “Oh my! How curious!” or “How very native!”.
The procession begins!!!! Look at brave Tobin’s face!!!! So earnest!!!
Here comes the bride!!!! I really don’t think I could have smiled any bigger. Pastor Niles + Eileen played ukelele singing Hawiian wedding song, “Ke Kali Nei Au”. I wish someone had taken a picture of Jeff’s face as I was walking down the aisle because his facial expression was priceless.
Jeff’s face looked like this:
Jeff + I were both so teary eyed during the ceremony. My tactic for keeping it together + not bawling was to stare at the moustache wax in Jeff’s moustache.
Here’s beautiful Ashley in her Hilo Hattie dress. My mom hand sewed the back to take it in + show off her teeny waist. Doesn’t she look so tropical?!
Our brave ring bearers, Matt + Tobin. Tobin was so nervous about it all day, but they both did an amazing job!!! Ring pillows were made by my mom with vintage aloha fabric courtesy of the fabulously stylish Cacey Riggan!!!
Don’t you love Matt’s cool surfer dude long hair???
Pastor Niles delivered a warm + heartfelt ceremony. Jeff + I were soooo happy!!!! Here’s me clapping for ourselves. So humble!!!
Husband + Wife!!!!!!
My lovely + sweet caterers Ann + Catherine from Heavenly Creations – aren’t they pretty?! http://www.heavenlycreations.org/ If it wasn’t for Ann we would of had to barbeque or go out to a restaurant. She saved me!!!!
Appetizers were the best poke we’ve EVER had + teriyaki beef skewers!!!
Dining al fresco, y’all!!! If you look closely, you’ll see my mom bossing me around as I’m taking the picture, + Jeff throwing his shaka.
Luckily, with the combination of families, we had an arsenal of talented photographers.
Here is one of my favorite pictures. Me with the Canadian Lady Posse. Jeff said, “Why would you post that picture?! Look at your facial expression!!!”. Exactly. Hilarious.
Dinner was better than I could have ever hoped for!!!! Grilled Opah fish, chicken, jasmine rice, grilled asparagus, salad + okinawan sweet potatoes!!!! I had seconds, y’all.
The cakes from Kilauea Bakery. Mocha Macadamia + Lilikoi Coconut. Doesn’t it look like Jeff + Rob are getting married?
What a perfect day!!!! All the elements came together so seamlessly (except when I almost couldn’t find the marriage certificate in the morning) with everyone’s love, help + contributions!!! Jeff + I were sort of winging it through most of the process, but we couldn’t have been happier with how it turned out!!! I ended the night watching two back to back episodes of “Saved by the Bell” with Matt + Ambur + then ended passing out while Jeff hung out with the family. Good work, Shelli! I will post more pictures + thought throughout the blog about the wedding, but for now I’m signing off because I’ve been in front of the computer for an hour + a half, hunched over like an old crone. Paradise + family fun are awaiting me!!! I love you all!!!!
Hizzah!!!! We did it!!! We’re still alive!!! We’ve made it!!! We’re hitched!!!! I’ll take you through an adventure to Wedding Land. Please, come join me.
THE DAY BEFORE
First things first – we HAD to get Jeff a haircut. It was getting too shagadelic even for me!!! b I found an Aveda salon called Epic Hair http://www.epichairboutiquekauai.com/- because Jeff is fancy pants + needed a “stylist”. They were tres bon, mes amis. A fabulous man’s haircut for $25!!! Bargoon (bargain) !!!! Next door was TnT Burger truck. Oh, how convenient! Oh wait, what was that you said, again??? Burgers aren’t part of the bride diet????
Next stop was the Kilauea Bakery + Pau Hana Pizza to choose our cakes. http://kilaueabakery.wordpress.com/ I found them on Yelp!!!
Cake tastings + Jeff = so goofy.
We did some paddle boarding – here’s my most fabulous sister-in-law Deb. She feeds us, gives me sympathy + the best advice. If it wasn’t for her, I would probably tear my hair out one by one. She really gets it all.
My brother-in-law, Tom + best man, Steve. They are setting up the lights with minimal tools. If there’s ever a rigging question, everyone always says, “Give it to Tom, he’ll figure it out.” Very handy, indeed.
This is when we skedaddled to Hanalei Farmer’s Market in search of flowers. We bought ALL the flowers in the ENTIRE market, y’all. And thank god for that because I would have been majorly boned if flowers were lacking. Jeff + I were haggling + bargaining + wheeling + dealing like we were at a Thai street market or something.
This is Juan, a real bruddah. Da kine. Blessings.
There was a stand for Niihau shell jewelry + I FREEEEEAKED!!!! Full on cold sweat, y’all. I’ve wanted a Niihua shell necklace for my entire adult life!!!! For reals!!!! Kahelelani are the tiniest and most prized of the Hawaiian shells that are sewn into leis. Kahelelani are found in varying degrees on most of the Hawaiian Islands, but are most abundant on Niihau and Kauai. These shells are so rare they are comparative to a semi precious gem + jewelry is commonly insured. Jeff bought me a necklace + earrings for the wedding! Can you say family heirloom???!!! May Outzen made my jewelry + she was the sweetest lady ever!!!!! Oh yeah, Lisa Bonet has been on the island + everyone’s been really psyched about it. We saw her at the market.
Lisa Bonet in all her dreaded glory.
I just want to remember her like this:
We collected all the flowers from 5 different vendors + Jeff yelled, “We’re going to need all hands on deck!!!!”. Wow. Taskmaster.
That night we had a family dinner, merging the Fayles with the tiny Nishinos. Here’s my brother-in-law Rob at the grill. Beer in hand. Oh yeah!!!! This is how we roll!!!!!!!
Kenny first at the dinner table. Surprised??? Hmmmm, no. His body language is saying, “C’mon!!!! Let’s do this!!!!!”!!!!!!
THE DAY OF
Here we go, y’all. I know this is the meat of the blog. The day of was busy but I was so zen about everything because I was so freaking exhuasted out of my noggin. Every other sentence that came out of my mouth was, “Yeah, okay cool! Sure, sounds good! Whatever you think!”. Of course I started my day with “calisthenics” as mother Jean calls them. Then Ashley + my mom picked me up to get a dress for Ashley (last minute, much? runs in the family) + vases for the flowers at our new favorite place, Walmart.
We didn’t have time for lunch so we had a quick bite at Walmart’s McDonalds. You’re all aghast. I know. In my defense, time + resources are very limited on Kauai!!!!! Sue me!!!! My mom is such a local, they didn’t have saimin (noodle soup unique to Hawaii) on the menu, but she asked + received.
Meanwhile, at the Anini house things were coming into effect.
Deb + Liz helped me do the flower arrangements, which turned out insanely gorgeous. Future brides, it helps to have artistically inclined in-laws.
Okay, you’re all going to kill me because I am a tease + I just now decided to make this post a two parter. I can’t even keep my eyes open with toothpicks right now, god help me. You are all going to have to wait + see my wedding attire tomorrow. Goodnight, sleep well everyone!!!!!! Check in tomorrow!!!
Yes, it is September 4th – the day of the wedding. You’re all thinking, “What is she doing posting on her blog on her wedding day? She’s crazy!!!”. That’s right!!!! CRAZY LIKE A FOX!!!!! I’m just going to post a bunch of pictures with short descriptions, cuz this sister is short on time if you know what I mean.
Me + my workout buddy Keiko
Matt the Gecko Whisperer
Jeff finally learning to relax
Rob + Kelly – so glamorous!!!!
First meeting of the mothers – how cute is that????!!!!!
Will post later!!!! Running off to do more errands!!!! Yes! Errands on my wedding day because that’s the kind of bride I am!!!!! Love you all!!! Wish me luck!!!!!
Man was I exhausted after a fitful night’s sleep. Nevertheless I powered through a run. Ashley walked over + we all made our way into Kapa’a for breakfast. Kountry Kitchen was on my mind y’all. Ashley had a fluffy macadamia nut pancake the size of her head.
After breakfast Jeff + I headed to pick up his family. Ashley decided to go on her own today because yesterdays festivities were a little too much for her sensibilities. We asked if she wanted us to drop her off a little more into town, but she was so ready to get rid of us, so she was like, “Sayonara, bitches!!!!”
The menfolk went with Jean + the children to do what Jean + children do. Jeff + I + the ladies all braved a mass Costco trip to fill up the house with enough food for 18 people. No, that wasn’t a typo. Here are the Canadians freaking out about the cheap plentiful supply of booze. You can only buy alcohol at government run liquor stores + it’s usually twice as expensive. Sad, right?
We had 3 full carts of food. Since I come from a small, insular Japanese family, it was all a little overwhelming, considering Costco gives me hives in the first place. He told me to take off for a bit + do errands. I had to go to Home Depot to clear my head. Aaaaaah. Sanctuary.
Daphne, Kelly + Deb in the grocery filled car. The booze total came out to $375. I freaked out, but the Canadians were ecstatic.
Next stop, renting paddle boards. Kelly + Deb ran across the street to get smaller item groceries while Daphne + Jeff were strapping the boards to the roof. Look at me in the front seat dejected. I think all the residual stress from the storage unit fiasco has worn me out. But I’m soooooooo happy that Jeff’s family is here now because they are helping distribute Jeff’s intensity. I’m passing the torch. Put a knife in me. I’m done.
We got to the gargantuan house at dusk. Kelly is the maestro of the kitchen + we were all her assistants.
Dinner was awesome!!!! Got to go!!! Wedding stuff to do! More later!!! Aaaaaah!!! Getting stink eye from Jeff!!!!!