Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Fish for a dear little friend

A log home with fish in the creek

A cabin in the snow

I love seeing the snow, 'hearing' it muffle sounds, the diamond sparkles all over the surface before anything touches it. But I no longer wish to live where it snows. However, seeing its beauty in photographs, remembering the stillness it creates, and making cards that depict the snow bring me much joy.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Colors of the garden

Autumnl is definitely here in Hawai'i. As the temperatures fall to the 60s at night, the morning coolness and crispness is welcoming to the continued mid 80 degree temperatures of the afternoons.

Our coffee berries have been quietly attacked by an invisible invader. Opening the coffee beans reveals a black area, sometimes the entire bean being blackened. The Kona coffee beetle is in our very own yard. We had heard it was on the island last year. It is affecting so many coffee trees on our island, that we all worry about how to control it. So we will purchase our coffee again this year.

The papayas are ripening more quickly, so we gave some to the mail delivery people yesterday, and still have some for ourselves.

The macademia nut is one of the hardest shells I have ever experienced trying to open. We need a hammer and a cement or asphalt base, then must use the right amount of force to open the shell without crushing the delicate nut inside.

Well, yesterday I picked a few macademia nuts while waiting for a postal delivery and found, despite the extreme hardness of the shell, what vigorous growers these trees are. One nut had fallen onto the street, landed on top of a bit of dirt. In just that tiny bit of dirt, the nut opened up and sent down the main root with tiny sprouts on the side of the main root. Amazing. I picked it up, placed the root in a bit of water and hope to grow it into a tree.

That is how our giant avocado tree started out a few years ago. We ate an avocado, and from the pit, a massive tree grew, which now, blesses us with extremely large, buttery sweet, avocados.

I love to feed the different color finches and even doves that come to our feeder on the lanai. But walking beneath the lanai, I find small plants growing from these tiny seeds. I don't water the seeds or give them any special attention. They just ... grow!

If we slow down and take the time to really observe life around us, we see miraculous activities all around us. Breathe, exhale, listen, observe, and get read to be amazed.

Friday, November 4, 2011

A rainy 'fall' day in Hawai'i

It might be new to some people that we have a fall and spring, summer and winter here in Hawai'i. Our island, in particular, has a well, regular winter season.

Our island has two immense volcanoes - Mauna Kea which when measured from the ocean floor to its top, is even higher in elevation than Mt. Everest. Mauna Loa, with its incredibly large land mass, is the world's largest volcano. Both mountains can and do receive snowfall during the winter months (even in July last year) much to the delight of the keiki (children) who want to build snowmen and go sledding! It may be near or sub freezing up on top of the mountains, but it is usually in the 80s down here where the population lives. It is of utmost beauty to see the snow covered mountains on a clear day, especially when lying on a warm, sandy beach under the shade of swaying palm trees. Our home is unique beyond words.

Today was breezy and rainy at times, with Maui Island getting the force of the storm. The cracks of lightening and rumbling thunder woke us last night, and started the dogs barking through the neighborhood.

I picked the coffee beans that I could, but it appears that the Kona Coffee Borer Beetle has struck our yard, too. It has become a fast problem here. The beans were not salvageable. We will need to buy our 100% Kona coffee from Costco again. If you ever get to try Kona coffee, make sure it is 100% Kona. Any 'blends' are not worth it even though they are cheaper. The coffee that is accepted are not decimated by the beetle. We will cut back our trees, and try to stay better on top of this for next year.

I continue to work while in bed, learning and creating greeting cards for friends as I can. It brings such pleasure to my life, to create such little pieces of homemade art, then to give it away to our dearest friends, family, young ones and older ones, and see the smile that comes across their faces. There is surely 'more happiness in giving than in receiving.' Acts 20:35.

There are so many dear ones I want to send homemade things to, as well as to donate to our family in Ishinomaki, Japan, survivors of the devastating earthquake, tsunami, then fires of this year. Our town here in Hawai'i was hit from the tsunami, too, with a house floating away, many businesses and homes damaged. Thankfully, nothing near as bad as the northeastern coast of Honshu. I have to keep busy with my hands and mind so that we can have more to give to others.

And so our fall weather continues on. Here's to hoping the afternoons are not too hot :)

Aloha for now,