Summertime Highlights

Where do I begin? I can’t believe summer is almost over…or at least it is for me on the 29th. Why? Because your girl got accepted to graduate school!!! My classes begin on the 29th. If I were to insert a relatable emoji, I’m not sure if it would be the “face screaming in fear,” “the weary cat face,” or the “face with tears of joy.”  Hmm. Maybe all three.

I hope everyone’s summer has been filled with a lot of sunshine and frozen drinks. My summer has had its ups and downs, however for the most part it’s been good and I’ve come to appreciate both the good and the bad. Although slightly cliché, it still is the truth: Life is what you make it.

With that being said, here is a list of some of my “summertime highlights” —

The food! // Yes, I’ve eaten some really tasty food this summer. Lightly golden, fried, filled malasadas. Oh yes. It was good. We actually tried two places that are known for having the BEST malasadas on this island — TEX Drive-In in Honoka’a and Manuela Malasada Company in Waimea. We ordered guava, lilikoi, coconut, and plain malasadas from TEX Drive-In. At Manuela Malasada Company, we ordered mango, guava, and plain malasadas with li-hing sugar on top. I’ve had thai food from New Chiang Mai Thai Cuisine. Smoothies and dreamy ice cream from Makani’s Magic Pineapple Shack. Fish and chips from Mo’s Fish and Chips. Craft chocolate bars from Puna Chocolate Company. One of my goals is to compile a list of amazing places to eat on the Big Island. Would you guys be interested in that?

 

 

The day trips // My mom, Riley, and I would drive all over the island — Kailua-Kona, Mahukona, Waimea, Ahualoa, Honoka’a, Laupahoehoe, Kalopa, Honomu, ‘Akaka Falls, Pepeekeo, Onomea Bay, Hilo, Volcano, etc. It was so much fun exploring our town; I loved it. I swear we saw so many beautiful places this summer. I love how one location can be drastically different from another location with only 5 or 10 miles separating the two. For example, Waimea always reminds of fall (hello, my favorite!), while Onomea Bay is covered with palm trees and a path leading to the most perfect aquamarine ocean.

 

 

My acceptance to graduate school // I was accepted to Georgetown University School of Continuing Studies; I’ll be studying Applied Intelligence. I can’t believe I’m going back to school — I’m both nervous and excited. I graduated last year from college, however it feels like a lifetime ago.

 

Amber Georgetown Letter

 

Hanging out with Riley // My sister Riley came home for the summer before she started her first year at college. It was fun having her home again — We talked a lot (I forgot what it’s like to be young again even though I’m only 22 or 85…depends on the day), ate good food, and explored various places.

Lint Center Scholarships // I love when it’s scholarship season. We have so many patriotic, academically gifted, and dedicated individuals applying for scholarships this summer; it’s wonderful!

 

I hope everyone continues to soak up the last bit of sunshine before summer ends!

 

 

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Ruth’s Chris Steak House, The Shops at Mauna Lani

Last year we had an amazing dinner for Father’s Day at Ruth’s Chris Steak House, located at The Shops at Mauna Lani here on the Big Island. It was a surprise that I was planning for quite some time for Father’s Day — When I told dad and the rest of the family (including my brother’s friends), everyone was thrilled!

The Kohala Coast is where The Shops at Mauna Lani is; it’s a beautiful area that feels like a very small Waikiki. The Shops has shopping, dining, and entertainment/events for the family.

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We arrived at Ruth’s Chris ready to eat! Dad, mom, me, Paul, and Noah arrived in one car, while Nick arrived a little later in another car. The inside of Ruth’s Chris is very nice, and naturally the boys did not know how to behave! In fact, within the first 20 minutes, a drink was knocked over, a certain someone pinched a certain someone, and when the flaming hors d’oeuvre arrived at the table I was scared for my hair. Ha! Seriously. It was the best time with the best people.

For the appetizers, we ordered the Flaming Oysters Rockefeller, Calamari, Seared Ahi/Sashimi, and Escargot. The food was amazing. I absolutely loved the oysters.

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Hors d'oeuvre at Ruth's Chris Steak House in Mauna Lani_Fotor

For the main course, I ordered the lamb chops and mashed potatoes. I also ordered a coke, while my drink of choice was a blackberry rosemary cosmo; since I wasn’t drinking any alcohol, the staff was nice enough to change the original raspberry rosemary cosmo to blackberry. Mom ordered a filet with grilled asparagus. Dad ordered either the New York strip or cowboy ribeye (I can’t remember which one), while Paul and Noah both ordered ribeyes…with a side of rice. Meanwhile, Nick ordered a porterhouse for two, and ate all 40 oz.

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For dessert, we had raspberry sorbet (the best!), Haagen-Dazs vanilla ice cream, and creme brulee topped with fresh blackberries.

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The palm trees were covered in twinkle lights, which made the area even prettier. It was a wonderful night filled with love, tasty food, and a lot of laughter.

 

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Father’s Day 2018

Happy Father’s Day to my dad! My dad, Kevin, he’s probably the greatest father anyone could ever hope to have — He’s a dedicated husband to my mom, a father to us four, a friend to all. He also happens to be the first person to ever introduce me to the world of law enforcement and military, and welcome me into this profession with open arms. And for that, I’ll always be forever grateful to him for being one of the very few (aside from my mom), from the beginning, to believe in me.

My dad and I have had some amazing times together; from running around Oakland together blowing bubbles when I was just a child to working as partners in the field solving cases — We’ve had innumerable fun times together that I’ll always be thankful for.

We all had a great dinner at home; perfectly seasoned ribs on the barbecue and potato salad. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any photos (shocking, I know). However, another blog post that I’m going to write is the dinner we had last father’s day at Ruth’s Chris Steak House, located at The Shops at Mauna Lani; as a father’s day gift, I took my dad and family there. The food was delectable and the atmosphere was just as great, in fact if I could make that an annual event for us I would.

Thank you dad for being a wonderful, supportive, hardworking father — I love you.

 

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Mother’s Day 2018

Happy Mother’s Day to my mom! My mom, Laurie, is an amazing woman; an amazing person. She is not only my mom, but she also happens to be my friend; she is my best friend.

She’s raised four children. She’s been a wife for nearly 23-Years. She is a person who has dedicated her life to her family; she is also a person who puts the needs of her family, her kids, before herself. More times than I can count. She is the type of person that if I wasn’t her daughter, I would want her to be my mom.

I love you, Mom. I hope one day I can make sure you have the kitchen of your dreams.


Mom, Dad, Paul, and I went to Yogurtland today to get some frozen goodness. I love frozen yogurt. It was actually my dad’s idea to go. I had a combination of pistachio, peach, blueberry, coconut, and taro; it was fantastic!

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When we went home, the sky was beautiful; pale blue with golden hues. The sky was doing its usual thing. And so were the trees. And the pretty flowers in the garden.

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Dinner was delicious. Kalbi (Korean-style short ribs) on the BBQ; dad grilled. Mom also made spicy, sesame peanut butter noodles with green onions and cilantro.

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It was a great day.

I read something once that stated that Mother’s Day is a day that can be celebrated by all women because deep down inside we are all mothers in some way — I kind of like that thought. Happy Mother’s Day!

 

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The Easter Chapters: Ka Lae (South Point), Part I

Earlier

Right now it’s 11:18 pm, the 24th of April, and nearly four weeks since Easter has passed. I’m also eating some very tasty vanilla pudding, however that’s beside the point. I’m finally posting photos from Easter…from last year. I know, I know. I’m shaking my head too.

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Location(s) – Ka Lae (South Point) / Big Island of Hawaii (we did drive through various towns to reach South Point) – When – Sunday, April 16, 2017 – Time – Afternoon & into the evening / With – Mom, Dad, Nick, Paul, and Max / What we did – We took a great Easter Sunday drive to a beautiful place called “South Point” / We walked around near the cliffs, ate our prime rib sandwiches that mom made at home, and simply enjoyed being with each other.

Camera used – Nikon Coolpix L840 / Editing – Fotor photo editor / I edited the photos by adjusting the curves.

 

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St. Patrick’s Day, The Boy and His Four-Leaf Clovers

I hope your day is filled with celebration, mass/church services, and some good ol’ corned beef (my mom is making Reuben sandwiches for dinner!).

I’d also like to remind you all of a time when my baby brother Paul, who was maybe 10 at the time, once found three four-leaf clovers (yes, 3!!!) at different locations without even intending to. I suppose the luck of the Irish is with him. I’ve never in my life found a four-leaf clover. I suppose the luck of the Irish is not with me. Don’t worry though, I’m not at all bitter about it.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

 


 

Some photos that I took this evening:

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And the sun goes down leaving a sky like this in its almost absence; full of shadowy trees and fading colors. It really was serene.

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I see you Ray with your I’m-only-smiling-because-you-won’t-leave-me-the-heck-alone smile. That’s ok because I love all of his smiles.

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Thank you for the close up, Ray!

Honestly, he really does get excited about having his photo taken. He sure is cute. Then again I’m a little biased considering I’m his mama… Hmm. Nope, he really is that cute.

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Monsoor is such a strong little guy. If you remember my last post about him, you would know what a miracle he is. His face is still healing (his ears have finally healed) but he’s come such a long way. And yes, he does have a little home now on our dining room table.

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This Reuben sandwich was delectable in every way.

 

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personal | 3.7.2018

Sitting here at my desk, eating a homemade grilled chicken sandwich (on sourdough), drinking an icy cherry coke.

Simply happy.

Nothing too profound to say.

Except that I’m sitting here at my desk, eating a homemade grilled chicken sandwich, drinking an icy cherry coke, and I’m happy.

 

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