Thursday, December 30, 2010

Lloyd and Leila

My son Garratt is an animal lover.  Always has been.  As a little boy, he'd go to the fence in a pasture and horses would come to him.  His litany of pets (and therefore ours) was long: a bunny named Michelle, a Jackson chameleon named Jack (of course), a guinea pig named Pete, a cockatiel named Lloyd Christmas, various fish, and then our family pets Millie (our golden retriever) and Lucy, his sister's cat.

Years ago, Lloyd would entertain us by whistling the Andy Griffith theme song.  But to be honest, none of us was too disappointed when Lloyd's clipped wings grew back and he flew the coop.  His chirping was loud and long.

Now that Garratt's grown, he has his own dog, Leila.  Two days before Christmas, we had a "shake the house" thunderstorm.  Late that night we got a text message from Garratt: "Please pray for me.  I just got home from work and Leila's gone".  In her fright from the thunder, she'd jumped the fence and ran off to who knew where.  Bob went over, armed with a flashlight, and searched through the coffeefarm where Garratt lives.  No Leila. I went back first thing next morning to do my own looking.  Nothing.

The next day, on Christmas morning, right after we'd opened the last gift, we got a call from his house-mate "Tell Garratt I've got a nice present looking right at me!"  Muddy and wet, but there she was in all her tail-wagging glory.

Another two days went by, and Bob and I were on our lanai having our morning coffee.  He'd just read that the Andy Griffith show was being released on DVD, and wouldn't his mom and dad enjoy it?  A moment later, a streak flew through the sky and landed on the traveler's palm right by our lanai.  Lloyd?!?  He stayed for a couple of hours, chirping his head off.  And then he was gone.  When I told Garratt, he said he was glad - the bird was more trouble than it was worth!  That prayer was more effective than we had imagined.  So now, we're on the look out for our Jackson chameleon!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Johnson Family

Tony and Jan came from the winter wonderland of Utah to spend a sunny Christmas in Hawaii and asked if I'd take some portraits of their family together.  So, on a beautiful, balmy December morning, we went to the Old Airport State Beach Park and made some memories.

Monday, December 20, 2010

North Kohala

Yesterday, a friend and I took a journey in my hubbie's very fun black convertible 350Z to the very north of our island.  In many ways, it was a trip down memory lane since we lived up there for three years when our boys were just little and they used to "hunt bears"  and gather "wooly coins" (lilikoi - passion fruit) in the rain forests.  The flowers are vibrant, the grass brilliant green, the sky a powder blue.  A refreshment for the soul.

We stopped at Pico's Bistro for a very delicious lunch.  I had a cloud of spanakopeta - filo dough with spinach and cheese, and she had the fresh mahi mahi fish and chips. Wow. This foodie loved it!!

And then on to a very old chapel that was right across the street from where we used to live.  It used to have a big banyan tree in the church yard, and I was disappointed to see it gone.  But it's an active church now and is being well kept, right up to the ancient cemetery.  Bob used to go there to write some of his favorite songs.

We passed a stream in one of the hairpin turns, and I remembered that the boys used to catch fresh water prawns in it.  Once or twice we hiked upstream to a beautiful waterfall.  An adventure for another day...

The highlight was the end of the road, Pololu Valley.  When my friend, Gloria and I were pregnant at the same time with our third babies, we used to walk there - a four mile round trip - a few times a week.  Yesterday, knowing it was just over the next ridge, and what a delightful site it is, I was excited to show it off again to my friend.  This is not "on the way" to anywhere.  It IS the destination, and so worth the drive.  A short hike would take us right down to the black sand beach.  But again, something for another day.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A little time in Positano

Ever since we first saw the movie, Only You, way back in the day, Bob and I have wanted to visit Positano, a little village tucked into the cliffs of Italy's Amalfi coast.  We had a short break between a busy week in England, and our next destination, Nigeria (where I'm posting this from).  So, at the last minute, we booked flights (thank you United Airlines Mileage Plus!) and rooms and had three wonderful days enjoying the romance and beauty of Positano.  

In photography, there are some places that look so much better than reality.  Others cannot be adequately described in pictures.  This is one of those places.  But it didn't stop me from trying!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Nadia and Alden's Wedding Celebration

Five years ago, Nadia and Alden were married, and their family has grown to include Aiden. Finally they were able to have the celebration of their dreams.  Alden grew up "Hilo side"of the Big Island, and though their home is now in Las Vegas, their family and friends from Hawaii and around the world gathered at the beautiful Sheraton Keauhou Resort and Spa for the big party!  

In addition to the business Alden owns and operates, he is also the founder of Another Joy Foundation bringing toys and cheer to children in developing nations. Because of their very busy schedules, the final planning for the wedding didn't happen until just three weeks before the event!  Sheraton Keauhou Resort and Spa's fantastic wedding coordinator, Natalie, did her magic, and the day was a dream come true!  Florals were by Annie of Bliss in Bloom.

I've recently added something that adds to the fun of receptions: a photo booth!  Complete with costumes, studio lighting, remote control shutter release so guests can take their own photos with instant viewing on my laptop.