the H word

I’m warning you now……that this post contains  the H word.

First i must warn you…..

I decided to go vegan and gluten free.

I also decided to give up alcohol.

I might even home school.

Then i woke up from that nightmare and stared up at the swirling fan above our bed and breathed a sigh

of relief.

The good news is: I am still maintaining my weight and i’m feeling great.


full of life

and i feel like i’m still going strong.

I even bought some more shorty shorts in different colors….

one for each day of the week.

Two weeks ago our besties from Chicago came to visit….

they actually came with a work group and stayed at the hotel Bryan works for.

Unfortunately they were only here for 4 night…..

but let me tell you…..those four days we packed in as much goodness as we could.

Luckily for us…..these are our active friends….and i think we only spent one afternoon lounging at the

pool and the other days doing really fun things.

I’m working on a post all about the things you should do if and when you ever come to Kauai…..

{lots of them are free things}

and the best places to eat and drink.

Anyhoo….Bryan really loves to SUP…..

so we got some boards and showed our friends 

how easy it is to fall in the water.

word up

just don’t ask your nine year old daughter to get a photo of you SUP’ing….

because this is what you might get

at least i hope Bryan was thinking to himself

“hey girl…..i’m glad you shaved your bikini line today”.

After us girls had some fun paddling around the bay for a bit…

but before we would have been eaten by a tiger shark…

we headed back in for safety and let the boys have their turns.

I introduced Shannon to my famous drink….

The Hanalei

which is fresh squeezed grapefruit juice…a bit of ginger and vodka

over ice.

Then we headed over to the pier….

and i initiated her to the club.

I’m not suggesting anything…but i’m sure a few of those “Hanalei’s” helped.

Shannon came to Kauai with her own list of things to check off….

there were only a handful of things on them…

and we crossed off 2 of those that day. Sup’ing and jumping.

I threw in the “hanalei drink” as a bonus.

Kinda like extra credit.

{almost like homeschooling}

The following day we marked the third thing off her list….

hiking 4 miles of the Hanakapi’ai trail.

I’m on that trail weekly now…..

since i have no more gabby…i feel like adding in the 4 mile hike after i drop kids off at school

is helping me in keeping my lower body using all the muscles it has.

We had such a great time with our friends Chris and Shannon…..superstars i tell you.

Anyhoo….back to the H word.

Somehow…..and don’t ask me how…..

i volunteered to accompany each of my kids on one of the field trips this year.

Mason’s field trip involved hiking.

that damn h word

I actually signed up for this one because

a. i knew i could do it

b. i knew it wouldn’t involve sitting on a bus with 5th graders

c. i wanted to see mason amongst his peers

The trail we did was the Okolehao trail which starts by the taro fields of Hanalei

and switchbacks up the mountain behind Hanalei so that when you hike 2 miles up…

you reach a point where you have gorgeous views of Hanalei Bay.

The 5th graders did great….and it was fun hanging with all of them.

I don’t think i would want to hang with them much more than that….but it was good.

I interrupt the H word with this photo of Fin at sunset last week….

he was trying to touch a rainbow.

I didn’t have the heart to tell him he was reaching with the wrong arm.

Alrighty….now back to the regularly unscheduled program.

On Friday night….last minute….a friend and i decided that we should get up really early and 

hike to a waterfall.

First of all….

i was over-served that evening…because i don’t really remember saying yes…

but more importantly….i don’t remember her telling me that it would be muddy….

or that we would be hiking a total of 8 miles that morning.

All that got me through that mess was

1: that there would be a waterfall


2: that Buddy the dog would lead us the whole way

The only thing we know about Buddy the dog is that he joined us on the trail at about mile marker 2 

then lead us all the way to the waterfall……hanging out with us…..

and leading us the 4 miles back out.

We think he had an owner that probably lived up there.

{i only mention the living up there thing because there are a lot of gypsy like peeps that

have decided that living like normal citizens is just WACK….not to be confused with smoking CRACK

and live up in the mountains. They also think clothing is optional…..hmph}


we sort of fell in love with Buddy the dog.

What i love about the photos below is the perspective of the waterfall.

The photo on the right is showing the waterfall a good 1/4 mile away….

and the one on the left is showing it right up close with a nice pool to swim in.

It was pretty amazing after we finally got up and sat there.

That concluded any and all photos that involve the H word.



there is just one more.

Mother’s Day 2012

They blindfolded me and said we were going to spa day.

Apparently “Spa day” meant we would jump illegally into the hotel next door’s hot tub

aka spa

after a 4 mile hike up the Hanakapi’ai trail.

you know you live in Kauai when you run into friends on the same trail on Mother’s Day.

I have a feeling they told their mom that they were doing Spa Day too.

I hate to end this post with sweaty photos of my family….

so i’ll show you the panzanella salad i made the other day.

It was amazeballs.

and just because i didn’t go gluten free…i did have some really good gluten free

lilikoi coconut cream cake.

I had this cake not to long ago for one of Lola’s friends birthday parties…so i got a few slices

to have with my mom.

Here is to cake!

gluten free or not.


  1. Love all of the gorgeous pics! Looks like you’ve been keeping busy and having tons of fun soaking up that Hawaiian sunshine! Fingers crossed you stay another year! 🙂

  2. Stacey Weber says:

    I love the way you live your life, it’s so full of everything and girl, you and your family are doing it right!
    Beautiful photos.

  3. You look amazing.

  4. Got to read your post AND talk to you – bonus night!

  5. Ha Ha HA! Love your hiking. Could those kids be any cuter? What fun friends you have. It looks like an adventure for certain! Glad you had fun! : )

  6. i think i need to pin that shot of you jumping into water. it is AMAZING. in magazines they love to do it with little kids, so watching mature (?) women do it is refreshing. Lots of other great photos too, but “jumping in” takes the cake.

  7. OK Casey…that’s it. We need to hang out. I miss you and was only just starting to know you. 1-I love grapefruit/vodka drinks(I can get my hands on the best grapefruits ever) 2-I love jumping off the peir 3-amazeballs!!!! Looking forward to hanging out soon.

  8. Anna-Ruth T. Murphy says:

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful life…(from one gf & vodka fan to another :))…Any chance you could share the cake recipe?

  9. You still look absolutely amazing and these pictures are all gorgeous! I wish I could have the experience you are having now. You lucky girl!! The H word is working well for you. Maybe I should give it a try, or maybe not:)

  10. That one with the rainbow is unbelievable…actually all of them are. Seriously…how are you ever going to come home?

  11. Chris in FL says:

    Those waterfall pics totally remind of the movie “Blue Lagoon”. Remember that flick? ha ha ha….I don’t think it’s way before your time. I wanted to watch it again with my kids but remembered some of the “not so appropriate” scenes…..oops.

    I wish I had those mountains here to climb…… gorgeous! 🙂

  12. Omg! I want to be you! I cannot imagine why you would ever want to come back. You look dynamite by the way. Paradise suits you!!

  13. Honestly k?
    I stopped reading this after “home school.”

    then I choked on my waffle.

    when I recover, I iwill get back to reading…IF I recover….

  14. You are so funny! I can totally relate to your new “active life.” Living in Montana instead of LA has had the same effect. We have now had endless days of the H word in Glacier Park and Big Mountain and it is lovely. The people here are fit too!

  15. Love your blog. Our family has also moved around to enjoy different parts of the West. Home is SF. Anyhoo, we’re heading to Kuaui (vacation) on Friday and would love your list of favs mentioned in the last post. Even just a few?

    Have fun in Chicago!

  16. I was in Kauai two weeks ago! We had an awesome time 🙂 We stayed most of the week in the Sheraton in Po’ipu and I loved being active snorkling, hiking, and we even took surf lessons in Hanalei. My husband was working the first four days so I tried to just hang out at the awesome pool on the beach but after an hour I was dying to get up and do something! There were people who came all the way to Kauai to sit ALL DAY in a lounge chair at the pool…. crazy…. I wanted to see it all and have fun. We took the cruise at sunset up the Na’Pali coast which was amazing. We went past the “Do not go past this sign” and hiked to the bottom of Wailau Falls. We got shaved ice at Jo-Jos- the best I have ever had! I looked for you when we were at Hanalei Bay surfing. I wanted to do the Kalalua trail to the beach but we had hiked straight down to the bottom of the falls the day before at Wailua and then surfed a few hours that morning. My legs hurt so bad I just didn’t think I could make it!

  17. I’m getting caught up on all my blog reading….this is such a fun post!!! That little guy in the green hat is stinkin’ adorable!
    Lola’s face when you’re jumping off the pier is PRICELESS!!!
    Keep up the good work!!

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