Destination: Pololu, Big Island

pololu

One of the easier hikes on Hawai’i Island. As you can see in my pictures below, there is this quiet beauty about this place. It’s secluded from large towns and at least a half or whole day trip depending what part of the island you are coming from. The hike down is rocky, somewhat narrow, but only takes about 30 minutes if you keep moving.

It is hard to do that as you can see, the picture opportunities are just too good!

pololu1

pololu4 My younger brother decided to skip, jump and run down, but I would use caution, as I used this photo to show you what the actual trail down looks like.
pololu2

Blondie takes big island (1) Check out that black sand! It’s so fine in texture that it’s soft on your toes.
Which also makes it a pain in the BUTT to brush off… But who cares!
pololu3
As you can see, a morning mediation was in session when we arrived at the bottom. This kind of explains the serenity down there. Majestic like, with ocean spray floating through the air.

It is not advised to swim here as the currents are very strong. You can hike toward the back of the valley, for more majestic looking sites. A very lovely day trip to get away from crowds and to escape. After you hike out, there are some cute places to eat in Kohala town.

I hope you are able to experience little hidden piece of Hawai’i one day.

Aloha.

Continue Reading

Easiest No Churn Cookies & Cream Ice Cream

EASY, No Churn Cookies & Cream Ice Cream! Took me 30 minutes!

Summer is so close I can taste it, literally. What better way to get into the spirit than ice cream, right?! I had some heavy cream I needed to use up and thought a dessert was necessary. So I stumbled upon the recipe here. I made one big change. HINT: the color!

This absolutely easy, fun and delicious recipe can be made last minute or with your kids or friends for a fun day inside! This will be a recipe I use for a long time to come. You can alter it by simply changing the add-ins or color!

Hope you enjoy!

Aloha

blondie takes big island6

Easy No Churn Cookies & Cream Ice Cream
Print Recipe
Super Easy, Quick & delicious NO CHURN ice cream! You can customize this recipe to your liking by simply changing the food color choice as well as exchanging the cookies to chopped mac nuts or fruit!
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 30 minutes
Passive Time
5 hours
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 30 minutes
Passive Time
5 hours
Easy No Churn Cookies & Cream Ice Cream
Print Recipe
Super Easy, Quick & delicious NO CHURN ice cream! You can customize this recipe to your liking by simply changing the food color choice as well as exchanging the cookies to chopped mac nuts or fruit!
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 30 minutes
Passive Time
5 hours
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 30 minutes
Passive Time
5 hours
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. Break all cookies up. Put to the side. (I threw them all in a plastic bag and used a handle of choice to crush)
  2. Whip heavy cream, food coloring & vanilla until stiff peaks forms. (5-7 minutes, so be patient! I had my Kitchen Aid on medium/high)
  3. Beat in sweetened condensed milk until evenly combined.
  4. Fold in crushed cookies with spatula.
  5. Pour into dish. I used a medium baking dish with lid.
  6. Place in freezer for 5-7 hours or until you can't stand it anymore and have to try it!
Share this Recipe
 
Continue Reading

No Bake Protein Bars

No Bake Protein Bars

I am a new homeowner so I have very limited ingredients in my house and I had almost every ingredient this recipe called for! So there were no excuses for not trying this recipe out! And did I mention it’s NO BAKE! Hell yes!

Found this recipe at BodyBuilding.com as it had fabulous reviews! Plus, the pictures made them look like Rice Krispie Treats. 🙂

I figured since my father-in-law’s birthday is coming up I would make these for him. He is the 5 day a week PX90 50-year old. That could be me too if I didn’t give up after 15 crunches and head to the fridge for a snack. (No joke.)

This recipe is super easy. You literally mix all the ingredients together, squish it into a square baking dish & pop in your fridge overnight, cut into squares and YOU ARE DONE!

No Bake Protein Bars
Print Recipe
Fast & Easy No Bake 6 ingredient Protein Bars!
Servings Prep Time
6 small bars 15 minutes
Passive Time
8 hours
Servings Prep Time
6 small bars 15 minutes
Passive Time
8 hours
No Bake Protein Bars
Print Recipe
Fast & Easy No Bake 6 ingredient Protein Bars!
Servings Prep Time
6 small bars 15 minutes
Passive Time
8 hours
Servings Prep Time
6 small bars 15 minutes
Passive Time
8 hours
Ingredients
Servings: small bars
Share this Recipe

NOTES

  • The recipe above is the original. I doubled the recipe so it made 12 small bars.
  • Will use 1/2 peanut butter and 1/2 PB2 next time as it was very peanut-y.
  • Maybe add some dates as a binding ingredient. these were a tad crumbly.
  • I added some chopped up dried goji berries on top of 1/2 the batch.
Continue Reading

Lessons of Home Remodeling

You hear over and over again that “Building or remodeling a home can be about the most stressful activity a married couple can engage in”. Well let me tell you first hand; it’s all 100% true. So before you begin your next big project with your loved one, I would love to share a few words of advice with you.

Hubby and I bought our first home in April 2015 and since we had some money saved up we decided to customize some things to make us feel comfortable in our new house. When I say “some things” we didn’t think it was going to be the whole house, but once we started, it really ended up being 90% of the house.

Here are some of the larger tasks we took on.

  1. scrape popcorn off every ceiling (except for kitchens & bathrooms)
  2. repaint every wall except for one bathroom
  3. rip out all floors and baseboards except two bathrooms
  4. gut the entire kitchen (fiberboard cabinets. BLEH!)
  5. trench around the house (moisture issues)
  6. buy all appliances (except washer & dryer)
  7. buy all furniture (we live with parents so we don’t have anything except our bed and plastic containers)
  8. chop down a money tree in the backyard

Some things to note: We are not married. We have never lived without a relative in the house with us. We live in, if not the wettest town then second wettest town on this island. We did this mostly on our own(and hubbys father).

We thought we were going to crank this shit out no problem. Be furnished and put together and have our house warming party by end of summer. NOPE.

Now I can only speak for myself in the points I am making, because I believe I have really learned from this experience. You will have to talk to hubby directly to see what he thinks.

Not always having to be right/or to know what the f@&k you’re doing

This is something very important. Both of us thought we knew more than the other. Because we Googled some shit, we thought we could easily rewire our electric outlets. This also trained myself to question almost everything hubby did. It was like I didn’t have faith in anything he could do; which was wrong of me.

This home was our new baby and it’s scary working on each piece and being worried that is going to go wrong. It took a long time for me to have confidence that even if it takes longer than I would like, it will be better in the long run if it’s done slow and meticulously and it be done right. So I thank hubby and his father for working slow, but accurately. And I appreciate the help, because I don’t know if I could have charmed a contractor to do it for free.

Do not buy everything brand new!

This was a hard one, and I think we messed up by purchasing a lot of things new. Also keep in mind that again, we are on an island and we do not have many options for second hand.

My parents gifted us $2,000 to help us get the things we wanted. And we did for the big things. Brand new fridge, stove, cabinets, couch, dining table, tv and other furniture. Could we have found a cheaper couch? yes. Could we have bought a second hand dining table? Yes. Could we have bought a less expensive stove? Most definitely yes, but look how cute she is!!!

Don’t forget to take a break

It’s easy to spend week nights changing lamps, mowing lawns or cutting baseboards in the garage and weekends spent traveling to and from Home Depot and Lowes to see who had the cheaper items. Before you know it you are having fights about how one person hangs out with their friends more than the other and how you haven’t spent time outside of the house and big box stores in over 3 months. Can you guess that was a real story? lol.

Hubby work 4 10-hour days, Sun – Wed. and I have weekends off. So Saturdays are our shopping days and then Sundays are my fun day with friends.
Hubby did not find that fair!

Continue Reading

Easy at home Starbucks Smoothie

I began my career search as a nanny in my early years at college, but after the demanding schedule and not being able to discipline these only children, I had to move on. A new Safeway was opening up in town and there was a two-day job fair which I attended. I stood in line for multiple hours in my heels and slacks waiting for a chance to “wow” some folks with my charming personality. ha!

The first day I was about 25 people from being entered into the interview room when they closed shop for the day, only to tell people to stand in line tomorrow for another maybe opportunity to get in the door. So, in need of some income, I came back early the next day and stood in line.

I made it to the sitting area, which was the guaranteed interview section and was immediately looked at and was told “Oh, you would be good for Starbucks.” What? So I look like a typical white girl or something? Well if you checked out my About Me photo, I kind of do.

At that time, I had probably stepped into a Starbucks a handful of times and only for a Vanilla Bean Frappuccino. I had yet to experience the effects of caffeine in my blood stream.

I was eventually chosen to be one of the select new baristas in town, and then, it happened. The day I will always remember. My first taste of coffee. A CARAMEL MACCHIATO. Two pumps of Vanilla syrup, topped with steamed 2% milk, one shot of espresso and finalized with a crosshatch of smooth caramel.

Starbucks Smoothie

 

That also was the beginning of my 4 year career with Starbucks. It wasn’t until I moved to Waimea Starbucks when I discovered this delicious concoction. One of our morning regulars, Bob, ordered a chocolate smoothie with 2 add shots. Interesting choice, I thought.

But why? It’s the morning: smoothie & coffee. Usually people choose to drink these two items separately, but why waste time.. get your protein, dairy, potassium and caffeine all in one!

& that is why I am here today folks. Since I don’t have the pleasure of making this for myself every work day any longer and do not want to spend the $7 to buy one, here is a delicious at home recipe for you!

Ingredients:

8 oz.  brewed coffee OR 2 oz. brewed espresso (I suggest letting it cool first)
3 tbsp. cacao powder
(you can add chocolate syrup if you want it sweeter)
2 tbsp. protein powder
1 ripe banana
1 cup ice

BLEND & ENJOY!

How easy is that?!

Let me know what other starbucks secrets you would like to know… I know all the recipes ;D

Continue Reading

Kabocha Pumpkin Eats

Pumpkin? In winter? I associate pumpkins with Fall, chilly weather, fireplaces burning and cuddles on the couch… Well, even though it is technically Winter still, we have all those things currently living in Waimea. Also, year round pumpkin harvests from friends!

Kabocha pumpkin/squash is a pesty vine that grows across backyards, up fences and around trees. While I do not want them in my yard, I will gladly receive this gift from a friends home.

It was Hubby and I’s first meal cooked in our new home. It was a long day of house chores so I was able to break up the pumpkin prep and seed baking throughout the afternoon. I have never cooked with pumpkin before, or curry, so I was excited to take on the task. And wouldn’t be heartbroken if it didn’t go as planned.

As this recipe needs tweaking, I will share a recipe when I prefect it.

So I begin…

I sliced into this squatty green pumpkin unsure of the insides.. Lo and behold, a Beauty!

 

kobucha pumpkin

I wasn’t planning on making anything but the pumpkin chicken curry but when I saw all these seeds, I figured, Why Not?! I had never prepared pumpkin seeds, nor ate them before. It’s probably one of these easiest things to make… along with kale chips!

pumpkin seeds

Easy pumpkin Seeds
Basic Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Print Recipe
So easy and so yummy! Great snack!
Servings Prep Time
2 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 minutes 1 hour
Servings Prep Time
2 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 minutes 1 hour
Easy pumpkin Seeds
Basic Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Print Recipe
So easy and so yummy! Great snack!
Servings Prep Time
2 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 minutes 1 hour
Servings Prep Time
2 people 20 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
15 minutes 1 hour
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Cut pumpkin in half Scrape seeds (try and take out all seeds from pulp) It is nice for a little meat to hang on though
  2. Boil seeds in salt water mixture for 5 minutes. I used the following method. 2 cup H2O + 2 tsp salt for every 1 cup of seeds Drain seeds from water. Pat excess moisture with paper towel
  3. Preheat oven for 400 degrees. Place seeds evenly on baking tray and coat with olive oil and salt
  4. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown **A few minutes over and the seeds will start jumping in the oven! I knew that was the time to turn the oven off!
  5. Take out of oven, cool and enjoy!!
Share this Recipe

As I stated above, I wonʻt be sharing the pumpkin chicken curry recipe as I have not perfected it to my liking. But I will share how I prepared it and how I will do things differently the next time I am gifted a pumpkin.

I cubed up the pumpkin meat. This part probably took the longest of the whole process as I had not found this link on how to properly peel a pumpkin. I’m embarrassed to share the method I used.

This is post bake pic. I coated all of the pumpkin cubes in olive oil and salt and pepper and baked for 15 minutes. I probably should have cooked closer to 10 minutes as you put this on the stove later.

I cooked two chicken breasts on the stove until almost done then added sliced onions, minced ginger and garlic, coconut milk and curry powder.

Put on the stove for another 20 minutes and this was the finished product!

I must say it was delicious. I think a nice scoop of rice with it would have been nice to neutralize the palate every couple bites.
I will be making this again in the future. It’s all about trial and error. Especially for me as I am a new cook in her new kitchen.

Some notes: half the pumpkin. More chicken (we are carnivores). cook potatoes less. cook chicken more.

Continue Reading