Maui County Fair

The Maui County Fair has a lot to offer, even though the fair is small, it is larger than our county fair back home in the Midwest, at least where I live.  We went to the fair and spent some time looking around at the various booths and entertainment.  I found the display of orchids by the Maui Orchid Society.  Wow!  I was in orchid heaven!  I gazed at various types of orchids I never knew existed.  Wonderful!

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The Bonsai trees displayed by the Valley Isle Bonsai Club was interesting as well.  Then there were the typical exhibits of local talent in the adult open class division, along with art exhibits from local students.

However, the display of fruits and vegetables was anything but typical, at least in my little corner of the world.  There were exhibits of papayas, mangos, bananas, star fruit, dragon fruit, avocado, lemons, limes, squash, melons, macadamia nuts, sugar cane, coffee beans, even taro and tapioca.

There were close to 50 food booths to choose from as well; everything from American to Korean, Chinese, Hawaiian, you name it.  There was an excellent selection of rides for kids and adults alike.  And don’t forget the livestock and the industrial tents!

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I will also include a few of the winners of the flower division.  Gorgeous:

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Grandma’s Coffee House at Kula

Grandma's Coffee House Maui

Grandma’s Coffee House is located up country at Kula, Maui.  This quaint little café serves breakfast and lunch, also dinner on selected days of the week, soups and sandwiches, full breakfasts or muffins.  There is a good selection of mainstays such as meatloaf, fish, and other entrees, vegetables and sides that you can either eat in or take with you.  You will have trouble choosing a dessert from Grandma’s scrumptious selection of cakes, pies, bars and cheesecakes.  We have been here several times in the past, and they never disappoint.

While you’re waiting for your order, take a look around at the local artwork for sale, or go outside and take in the views of the ocean far below, or the beautiful green mountains.

We chose to eat outside on the lanai.  There were two rather friendly kitties there, and craved attention so they welcomed people making over them.  If you have the chance, you must visit Grandma’s, then head on up to Maui Wine, the only winery on the island!

brunch date at Grandma's

Swimming Championships

ocean1End of the race between the orange buoys.

For the past few days the Best of the West 2015 Western Zone Swimming Championships has been taking place at the aquatic center in Kihei.  The center includes an Olympic size pool with all the bells and whistles.  This particular meet was for kids age 10 – 14

The photo above was taken at Kam Beach 1 where we walk frequently.  We spent some time watching and learning about the open swim competition held there this morning following the swim meet at the aquatic center which ended yesterday.  The competitors line up out in the water, then on signal swim up the beach to an orange buoy, then turn to swim around a second buoy, then all the way back across and round two more buoys before swimming in to end the race on the beach, 1K for kids 10 – 12, and 3K for age 13 – 14.  Looked a really long swim to me, but these young athletes did great.

ocean2And they’re off!!

oceanBefore the race.

We’re on Maui!!

Ok, so we arrived on Maui!  We stayed in a vacation rental for about 10 days, thinking hopefully this would be long enough to allow us to find a place to live.  Vacation rentals are expensive no matter which way you look at it, so we knew we had to hightail it as soon as we got here to locate someplace to live long term.

We debated as to where to look, in the same town as our boys live?  Upcountry where it’s cooler?  On the west side?  Actually we looked around all three places, but opted to live closer to our sons.  So, the hunt was on!  We collected newspapers and looked online at Craigslist for rentals.  I will say, shopping for housing is an exhausting venture.  We made a lot of phone calls, drove by a lot of places, and started scheduling viewings.  We spent several days doing this until we narrowed down the prospects.

We settled on a very nice, newly remodeled condo on the 4th floor of a complex with a mix of long term and vacation rentals.  Unfortunately the condo was unfurnished, but we found it to be fun to go Craigslist shopping and scout moving sales for items we needed, as well as purchases of some new items.  People are moving to and off the islands often, so it was easy to find these “moving off the island” sales and purchase furniture, etc. for a very good price.

During the process of condo hunting, we were car shopping as well.  Well, actually pickup shopping.  So now, we have a place to live, and a vehicle to drive.  We spent the first couple weeks just spending time with our sons and visiting our favorite places around the island.

Up next, job hunting!

Cattle Egrets


Cattle egrets are so named because they are commonly seen close to cattle where they feed on insects that fly up as the cows move across the pasture in Hawaii.  Sometimes they ride on the backs of cattle and pick insects off as they go.  However, we noticed these birds following closely behind the person using the riding lawn mower next to where we live, apparently eating bugs the mower disturbed.

Egrets are a common sight in Hawaii, as well as other warm climate places, and interesting to watch.

White Rock (Palauea) Beach

White Rock Beach

One day after I got off work, my husband and sons had a picnic planned at White Rock Beach.  Wonderful!!  So I went home, put on my swimsuit, gathered some necessities, and we were off.

This beach is close to Wailea, south of Kihei.  We parked along the road and walked the short distance to the beach and set up our picnic area under a Kiawa tree.  Weather was hot, so the shade was welcome and comfortable.  White Rock is a little known beach to tourists, and on this day there were only a handful of people on the beach.

The waves were not strong at all, and there are lava rocks at the ends of the beach which make good snorkeling.  The beach itself has easy entrance with a gentle slope which makes taking a dip in the water inviting.

After lunch, swimming, and a good game of Bocce, we called it a day.  As we were leaving, people started to gather for a sunset wedding on the beach.  We will be back, White Rock.

Tying up loose ends

So, now we’re up to the nitty gritty and little details of things to be done before we left for Maui.  Remember we left a house and a couple small businesses back home.  Once we pinned down a date to actually leave, plans began to move quickly.  We had to make calls about the best way to handle our cable service, Dish, internet, water, etc.

Plane tickets were purchased, plans were made with the person who would take care of things for us at home, visits were made to people we wanted to visit before we left, mostly out of town elderly relatives.  My husband began to wind down his workload and finish up construction jobs.  I resigned from my job.

Then are the things you don’t really think about, like not buying too much food, but instead cleaning out our freezer and refrigerator, preparing our vehicles and parking them for winter.

Oh yes, we also had to find a decent priced vacation rental for short term on Maui to give ourselves time to find a permanent place to live.  Then got out the suitcases and decided what to take with us.  I left almost all my “office clothes” at home, knowing I most likely would not need them on Maui. Pack light was my goal, and we succeeded, well, almost.  Now I realize I brought clothes I most likely might not wear, but then it’s summer in Hawaii, and hot.  I most probably will wear them when it cools off a bit.  Also I put items in a box that we would “need” and mailed the box ahead of us.

Ok, whew, we’re ready to go!  All right, that’s at least some items to be taken care of before moving.  But, there is also the mental preparation of a move like this.  I mentioned that our two sons live on Maui.  However, we have a daughter and her husband and three grade school age grandchildren who live back home.  As a hands on grandmother, I knew this was going to be a tough one to handle, being away from them, and I had to prepare myself mentally to be separated from them for a while.  More about this later.

Next – we’re on Maui!!