Week in Pictures

52projectProcessed with VSCOcam with c2 presetunnamedMy beach babes both looking so serious. My favorite portraits from last week’s collection were of this little girl on a swing and this beach baby down under.

365daysofnaturewalksProcessed with VSCOcam with g3 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a9 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with a8 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f1 presetotherfavsA belated Easter Egg hunt with good friends and a visit from Dado!Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with c1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetdamiansweeklyupdateweek51Damian has developed a strong love for brushing his teeth. He even throws a fit when we take away his toothbrush. So funny. This week Damian also said a new word- “Isla,” which is his cousin’s name. He had a little accident where one of his teeth that had come out got pushed back in (you can see in the bottom right picture below), but we took him to the dentist and they said the adult tooth hadn’t been damaged and it should come back out like normal. And that’s about it. One week til he turns one!

Fabuloso & Frijoles

This post is brought to you on behalf of Collective Bias, Inc. and Fabuloso®. I was compensated, but all stories and opinions are my own. #MiFabuloso #CollectiveBias

 Have you ever smelled something that instantly transported you back to your childhood? I’ve always heard that scent is strongly linked to memory and I have to think it’s true. I’ll never forget one of the times it happened to me. When I first moved away from home (from South Texas to Hawaii) I wasn’t quite sure how to clean a house properly. I had a few chores growing up, but I never had to clean a house top to bottom. The cleaning aisle of a grocery store was foreign to me. Choosing which cleaning products to use was a learning process. Mopping, for one, was a skill I had not yet acquired. So I did what any college student would do and avoided it for as long as possible. I started off using those little cleaning pads that you attach to and end of a stick. They helped, but my floors never felt really CLEAN, you know? Still, I used them for too long to admit before it started to get on my nerves. I was wandering through the cleaning aisle one day when I spotted something I remember seeing all the time under our kitchen sink growing up. It was a big clear bottle with purple liquid and a label that read, “Fabuloso®” I decided to purchase it, along with my very first mop (movin’ on up). The first time I used it was a Sunday. Daniel and I were having people over for a barbeque and I decided to brew a big pot of frijoles charros (a soupy mix of pinto beans, tomato, onion, cilantro, peppers, and bacon). After everything was set to simmer, I swept up the mess I made (I am a SUPER messy cook), and decided to bust out my new mop. I poured a little Fabuloso® in a big bucket of hot water and mopped up the kitchen floor. When I finished that up, I left my house to run to the store for some last minute things. When I returned, I opened my front door and BAM! I was a kid again, running down the long hallway with sparkly clean floors to the kitchen where a huge silver pot of beans was cooking. It reminded me of every family barbeque of my childhood. There was something about the mixture of those two scents that was just so comforting to me. And ever since that day, Fabuloso® became part of my cleaning routine.Continue Reading

Week in Pictures

52projectProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetBoth portraits this week are from my iPhone. I probably could have chosen clearer images from my DSLR but the memories increase the quality tenfold in my eyes.

 My favorite portraits from last week’s collection were these and this one.
365daysofnaturewalksProcessed with VSCOcam with f3 presetIMG_1868Processed with VSCOcam with k3 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with k3 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with c2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetcollage1Processed with VSCOcam with k3 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with c2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with k3 presetotherfavsmybeautifulchildrenProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetdamiansweeklyupdateweek50Damian was sick with a stomach bug for a few days this week. He remained cheerful despite his obvious discomfort. My poor baby. He also celebrated his first Easter. He didn’t quite understand the concept of an Easter Egg Hunt, but he loved throwing whatever eggs he found. He loves throwing balls of any kind. He’s such a boy.


5 Must-Sees on the Big Island

5 Must-Sees on the Big IslandOahu is my island, but the Big Island is nothing short of magical. From white snow to black sand and everything you can imagine in between, it truly is a marvelous place. I can’t wait to get back to the islands and explore a bit more. But for now, here are five things I know you can’t go to the Big Island without seeing:

1. Sunset on Mauna Kea

When I was on Mauna Kea I felt like I was on Mars. The limited light cast the bare soil in a deep shade of red. The sky was bright orange, but only up to the bottom of the clouds. The skyline was dotted with crazy-looking satellites and telescopes. I had studied data collected from Mauna Kea many times while working on my bachelor’s in geography, but I had never actually been there. It was surreal- a vast contrast from the warm green jungles below. There was snow on the ground and it was June. I looked up through a telescope and gazed at the “jewelry box” constellation. The entire evening was surreal, and definitely something I would do again.

2. Waipio Valley
Waipio ValleyIf I could live anywhere in Hawaii, it would definitely be Waipio Valley. When I was there I truly felt like I was isolated from the rest of the world. It was what I had always imagined Hawaii to be like. To get there you have to drive down a steep road (up to 45 degrees) down the wall of the valley. This significantly limits its access. Driving down the road was pretty sketchy, but worth the experience. The valley meets the ocean at a river mouth and black sand beach. One of the most gorgeous places I’ve ever seen.

3. Papakolea Green Sand Beach
Papakolea BeachPapakolea, also known as Green Sand Beach, is located on the southernmost portion of the Big Island. It was formed by the eroding of a cinder cone. The green sand comes from olivine, a green gem found in lava. To get there, you either have to have four-wheel drive or you have to hike three miles through blaring sun and extreme wind (sometimes there are a few guys with trucks waiting at the end of the drivable road who you can pay to transport you). We rented a jeep so we were good to go. If you ever go to the Big Island, you pretty much have to rent a jeep if you want to have any fun. While you’re there, be sure to check out South Point, the southernmost point in the United States.

4. Akaka FallsAkaka FallsAkaka Falls is a 442ft waterfall near Hilo. You don’t have to trek through the rainforest to catch a glimpse of it, and you certainly can’t jump off it, but it makes up for it in beauty. It’s just SO tall. And there are plenty of flora and fauna to admire on the short walk to get there.

5. Manta Rays at Night
Night Dive with Mantas(Picture Source) I don’t have any pictures of my own of this because I didn’t bring a waterproof camera (which I’ll regret for the rest of my life… or at least until I do it again), but I don’t think pictures would have done it justice anyway. We left from Kona around sunset and found ourself in a bay with a bunch of other boats and divers. It was the only time so many other divers was seen as a good thing. Why? Because we all shone our flashlights together in one spot to attract the plankton, which in turn attracted the Manta Rays. We watched the Manta Rays dance around and enjoy their dinner (or breakfast?) and it was simply beautiful.

Have you been to the Big Island? What’s on your “Must-See” list?