Tuesday, March 30, 2010


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It’s hard for me to believe that just last week I was in Hawaii. I knew before I went it was inevitable that “We are going to Hawaii” would become “We went to Hawaii.” As I sit writing this post (and drinking a good strong cup of 100% Kona coffee) I’ll try to relive the week again.

What I love about going to Hawaii, is that just being there-in this place so different from where I live-is enough in itself. You don’t have to try hard at all to see some of the most stunningly beautiful scenery on earth-the mountains, the ocean, the tropical flowers…

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We found a little beach cottage in Kailua, a town not too far from Honolulu. It was cute, stocked with everything we could possible need for the week, and just steps from the beach. I was impressed, because even though the cottage is just a beach rental-it was furnished with beautiful antique furniture, nice art work, and vintage china . I was thrilled to see that the living room furniture was upholstered in gorgeous palm tree barkcloth too! (And that I was able to get 7 yards of it myself for a song!)

The cottage was situated in a lush garden setting, full of many kinds of birds that sang for us all day.

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Each day we found a different part of the Island to explore. Here are just a few of the places we saw:

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Diamond Head

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La’ie Point-where we saw a natural arch created by an April Fool’s Day tsunami in 1946.

The ocean literally punched a hole in the rock!

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Halona Beach-the famous love scene in ''From Here to Eternity" took place on this section.

(We wondered how the actors got down there to do the filming?)

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The Royal Hawaiian Hotel on Waikiki.

Built in 1927, it was one of only two hotels on Waikiki at the time. I’d love to stay here but it’s way (and I mean way) out of our price range!

It is famous for it’s lovely pink color, and is in the shape of an H when seen from above.

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The beautiful Haiku gardens in Kane’ohe-a lush tropical paradise and also the location of Hale’iwa Joe’s where I had some excellent coconut shrimp.

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Pu’u o Mahuka Heiau. This shows the remnants of an ancient Hawaiian temple-the place

of many human sacrifices.

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Taken in Chinatown, this bar is called Amy’s Place! Luckily my Amy still prefers a nice cold glass of milk!

Several years ago, we had our first apple bananas in Chinatown-they are really good, and Chinatown in general is an extremely interesting place to walk around.

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The National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl, founded in 1949. In ancient times Hawaiian royalty was buried here, and it was also a place of human sacrifice. In fact, the Hawaiian name Pu’u-o-waina means “hill of human sacrifice.”

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My Uncle Pete (site Q-99) My Dad was last here in 1969.

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Sailor Jerry (site T-124)

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Dole pineapple plantation. My Mom recalled how years ago there was a fountain that was filled with pineapple juice, and a person could fill a cup and have a drink.

Times have changed, but how that would have been fun to see.

It was interesting to see a pineapple growing though, and the grounds have a nice collection of tropical plants, and a koi pond where the koi come up out of the water when food is tossed to them.

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Good ‘ole Hilo Hattie’s-where you can get beautiful Aloha clothing and souvenirs. Hilo Hattie was a performer years ago and founded the Hilo Hattie stores in the 60’s to promote Hawaiian goodwill and the spirit of Aloha. I love her. She appears in some of my favorite movies and was a talented singer and actress.

We saw much more than the few things I’ve highlighted here, but this post was harder to write than I thought it would be. It’s hard to put experiences into words that really capture my impressions, and what I have written barely does justice. My advice-go to Hawaii if you can and discover it for yourself. I can guarantee you will never be the same!

Willow necklace

Willow would like the last word:

“My Parents went to Hawaii and all I got were some shell necklaces!”


  1. Oh Valerie what a beautiful and interesting place it is! I don't think there is much chance of me getting there, but your post has given me a flavour of it. What lovely memories it has given you too! So funny....Willow, the expression is priceless! Have a lovely week my friend. suzie xxx

  2. I am so glad you had a great time here!! Your photos look like they could all be postcards!!

    Oh, by the way, "From Here To Eternity Beach" is usually called "Cockroach Cove" by the locals here. (Lovely name for such a beautiful place, ya?) And the path to get down there is almost right under where you took that picture from - it's kinda hard to see if you don't know where to look.

    Your little cottage sounded WONDERFUL! I may have to check out a little place like that some time to just go stay and paint for a week or so, with NO DISTRACTIONS!!

    Now you have made me want to go give Haleiwa Joe's a try, I love Coconut Shrimp, and have not been there yet!!

    And last but not least..... poor poor Willow! Some Shell Necklaces??!?? (And might they have even been the FREE Hilo Hattie's shell necklaces? Hmmmmm? OK, I won't tell Willow)

    But maybe MOM can get on her machine and whip up Willow an unreal cool barkcloth Aloha Shirt!! Yea!

    Thanks for sharing your Hawaii trip with us!