Instagramming Maui: “G” is for…

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Aloha amigos!

For those of you new to Island Gypsy Hawaii, I’m doing a blog series right now, “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life” today. You can find a post that includes links to the entire series here, which I’ll be adding to on a regular basis. And here’s a link to my instagram site in case you’d like to stop by there.

G is for…

Jennifer-Poppy-Gypsy1-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

 

G is for Gypsy, of course!

The name “gypsy” is a mixed bag these days, but I’ve always loved this nickname that my great-grandfather (a.k.a. PawPaw) gave me back when I was just a little girl. I still have letters addressed from my great-grandparents to me with, “Our Dear Sweet Gypsy…” and I cherish their words. So, why the nickname? My PawPaw told me it was because of my dark brown eyes, which have actually lightened quite a bit over the years.

Jennifer-Poppy-IGH-baby

When we moved to Maui a little over two years ago, I was thinking about continuing my creative endeavors via a small business and the name “Island Gypsy” came to mind. I added “Hawaii” to it, to indicate which island gypsy ;)

Over the last several years our family has moved quite a bit, although we’ve managed to stay put in the same island cottage for the last year, and I think I may have all of my gypsy-moving out of my system for now! (It’s the packing and moving stuff that’s put a halt to all that daydreamy-stuff). Haha!

But I love gypsy style, the vibrant colors, the free spirit, the love of change…yeah, I’ll always be a “gypsy” at heart, in the best sense of the name.

Jennifer-Poppy-Gypsy1-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Do you have a fun childhood nickname, too? Would you consider yourself a bit of “gypsy,” too?

With mucho aloha,
Jennifer

Note: The original photo from the one above was taken by my beautiful photographer friend Chantelle in the summer of 2012 over at the Hui in Makawao, Hawaii. 

 

Instagramming Maui: “F” is for…

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Good Monday Morning to You!

As you might have guessed, I’m continuing my blog series, “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life” today. You can find a post that includes links to the entire series here, which I’ll be adding to on a regular basis. And here’s a link to my instagram site in case you’d like to stop by there. The Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival was this weekend and today’s letter in the A-Z Challenge (for me) is “F.”

F is for…

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Jennifer-Poppy

 

 F is for Festival

The Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival to be exact! I snapped this photo in one of the many Growers Market booths, thinking it was the perfect combination to represent this one of a kind festival: organic, island-y, colorful…

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Jennifer-Poppy

 I think Jen Russo of Maui Time Magazine said it best in regard to the quality of the “Flower Festival”:  

You might think that a bunch of people living in the Haiku jungle would be more lackadaisical but the reality is that they can mobilize better than any municipal government. ~Jen Russo, Maui Dish

As I’ve worked behind the scenes with the festival for the past few months, I can attest to Jen’s statement being 110% true! The tireless hours parents of Haiku students, as well as community members, put in to help make art with classrooms full of kids, to encourage local businesses to be part of Restaurant Row or “Made in Hawaii” crafters in the Marketplace, or local farmers to join the Growers Market, live bands to perform, and so much more…it’s is mind-boggling!

And the result of these hardworking peeps: PRICELESS!

The festival held its 2nd Annual Instagram Contest this year (see pics here) and after reading some of the captions, I came to see even more just how special this event is…it’s more than an event–it’s a uniting of people of all ages, from all backgrounds in the name of community.

One Maui Mama said on Instagram:

“You know an event knows what they’re doing when they include a “Baby and Mama Tent” for nursing, changing and staying out of the rain! We made so many friends!”

Another Instagrammer said that the festival was even better than Coachella, so yeah, you could say it was a hit here in Maui. :)

The best part? Haiku Keiki benefit from all of this community-togetherness. Art classes, music classes, science programs, the Boys & Girls Club…there are so many enrichment programs that are provided through the festival.

My hubby caught me on camera at the festival…and when I looked up the hashtag #PeaceLoveHaiku my new-ish friend BridgettLovesMaui and I were one degree of separation away from each other – lol.

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Flower-Festival

Courtney from Maui Jungalow was there, as well as several other social media peeps. If you haven’t checked out Courtney’s blog and you are curious about “real life” here in NorthShore/Upcountry Maui…do so today. :)

Have you ever been to the Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival? If so, what was your favorite part? Is there a fun festival in your area that supports non-profits or a local school? Maybe I’ll see YOU in Haiku, Hawaii, next April for this awesome time, rain or shine!

With mucho aloha,
Jennifer

For more on the Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival you can read my guest post on A Maui Blog (Liza Pierce) or over on the festival blog, where I’ve written human interest stories and the activities at the festival.

 

Instagramming Maui: “E” is for…

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Happy Aloha Friday, y’all!

Ending this week with another post in my blog series, “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life.” You can find a post that includes links to the entire series here, which I’ll be adding to on a regular basis. And here’s a link to my instagram site in case you’d like to stop by there. I’ve been crazy busy getting ready for the Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival, and tomorrow is the big day for the festival. I’ll do a fun recap on it next week!

E is for…

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Eco-Friendly

 

E is for Eco-Friendly

When you live on an island, adopting an eco-friendly lifestyle becomes second nature. There is only so much space for our trash on Maui…thus recycling, re-using, upcycling and being conscious of our consumption is a must! If you live here or have visited recently then you know that there is now a law banning plastic bags at grocery stores. This law is in place to encourage us to use our own bags “B.Y.O.B” = Bring Your Own Bag. Of course, I have like 20 re-usable grocery bags and manage to leave them in my car every time I shop. So what do I do? Carry out my items by hand – LOL. I feel so proud of myself when I actually remember to bring in one of my bags.

You know I love to upcycle. Here’s a piece of art I created recently, using pieces from a broken necklace and a canvas background. It will be part of the huge silent auction at the Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival this weekend, with all proceeds benefiting Haiku keiki.

Surf-Art-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

One of the things I love about living in Maui, Hawaii, is that the County makes it easy to recycle, with recycle locations in nearly every town. Our eco-system is fragile and caring for the aina (land) is part of living in Hawaii. The ancient Hawaiians held a deep belief system in honoring God, honoring man, honoring land. This way of righteous living thrives in the souls of many still living here on the islands…and I feel it’s a good way to live. If only we could all adopt that belief system…this world would truly be changed with our own two hands…working together…honoring one another.

Do you have a handy way to recycle where you live? Any tips for recycling that you’d like to share?

With mucho aloha,
Jennifer

 

Instagramming Maui: “D” is for…

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Aloha y’all!

As you know, last week I kicked off my new blog series called “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life.” You can find a post that includes links to the entire series here, which I’ll be adding to on a regular basis. And here’s a link to my instagram site in case you’d like to stop by there. I’ve been crazy busy getting ready for the Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival, hence my delay in posting.

D is for…

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Imua-Ball1

 

D is for…Dress-Up

So, normally Maui isn’t really known to be a place where you “dress-up.” But there’s a story to this Instagram Pic. You see, this past Saturday as I was decluttering, cleaning & re-organizing our island cottage, you know, all Cinderella-like, I got a Facebook message. It was from Sarah Burns, a.k.a.Sarah BurnsThe Ohana Mama.”

Sadly, Sarah was under the weather and couldn’t attend an event. :( So she asked me if I would take her place on the Social Media Team for the Fantasia Ball - THAT NIGHT!!!

Whoa…an opportunity to dress up, eat amazing food, watch a cool fashion show, see fantastic entertainment, dance the night away, and hang out with awesome people all at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort? Umm…how could I say no??? Plus, the Fantasia Ball was all for a good cause – to raise support for the non-profit Imua Family Services. They provide comprehensive early childhood development services to children and their families with the support and resources needed to achieve thheir full potential in life. Living on a small island, having a non-profit like Imua is a huge blessing!

I quickly texted my husband to see if he’d watch the kids and I raided my closet to find something for the ball. Thankfully, the theme of the ball was Black and White, and lo and behold, I had a white cocktail dress with a black belt that would work! I also got to break out my Great-Grandmother’s fancy sparkly vintage purse for a little added bling. I thought about wearing my tiara from my wedding, but opted not to this time…maybe next year?

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Imua-Ball1

 

Here are just a few of my Instagram snapshots from the night…

 The beautiful ladies of the Fantasia Ball Social Media Team (from left to right):
@DaffodilBlog . @HyattMaui . @IrisAgency . @MauiShopGirl . @LifeInParadise . @IslandGypsyHI
Missing: @BabyShrink . @VenusBravo

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Imua-Ball2

 

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Imua-Ball3

Island-Gypsy-Hawaii-Imua-Ball4

You’ll just have to visit my Instagram for more fun photos from the night!

Have you ever had a surprise change of plans during an otherwise boring day? Have you or someone you know received help from Imua Family Services before?

With mucho aloha, this Cinderella is out!
Jennifer

 

Instagramming Maui: “C” is for…

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Happy Aloha Friday!

Well, I made it to the third day of my new blog series called “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life.” You can find a post that includes links to the entire series here, which I’ll be adding to on a regular basis. And here’s a link to my instagram site in case you’d like to stop by there.

C is for…

Coffee-First-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Enough said, really…

Coffee First.

Have you ever had coffee from Maui or any of the other Hawaiian islands? Yum. And if you add homemade whip cream to it? Yeah, it’s a little taste of heaven.

And now I must go finish my coffee…

With mucho aloha,
Jennifer

Instagramming Maui: “B” is for…

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Happy Aloha “Day Before Friday” from Maui, Hawaii!

Today is the second day for my new blog series called “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life.” You can find a post that includes links to the entire series here, which I’ll be adding to on a regular basis. And here’s a link to my instagram site in case you’d like to stop by there.

B is for…

Beach-Ballet-Beauty-Island-Gypsy-HawaiiBeach Ballet Beauty

It’s been said that “dance is the hidden language of the soul” and I would have to agree. This picture is from a recent photo shoot I did in Kapalua Bay, Hawaii. When I discovered that the family’s teenage daughter was a dancer, I just knew that we needed to capture her in her element. I love the way she so confidently and gracefully flies into the blue sky. Arms wide open, head flung back, ready for life!

While we may not all have the training and years of practice that it takes to master such a beautiful move, deep inside our souls there is the dancer…the one who says “yes” to dreaming…the one who valiantly flings herself into action…the one who joyfully opens up the next chapter to her more authentic self.

Beach . Ballet . Beauty

Yes, I really like the sound of that…

Have you ever danced on the beach? Is there a dancer inside you, ready for the next chapter in life? If so do share…Oh yeah, remember if you wanna find me on Instagram, I’m Island Gypsy Hawaii. Mahalo!

Aloha,
Jennifer

Instagramming Maui: A is for…

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Aloha my Island Gypsy Hawaii friends!

If you’re new here, I’m kicking off a new blog series today…called “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life.” You can find a post that includes links to the entire series here, which I’ll be adding to on a regular basis. And here’s a link to my instagram site in case you’d like to stop by there. Now…onto the fun!

A is for…

Avocado-Aloha-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

I bet you thought I was going to write “a” is for “aloha” – right? Well, okay, I kind of did…but also “a” is for “avocado.” My family absolutely LOVES avocados and seeing as we live in Maui, we are blessed to enjoy them fresh off the tree. (Not our tree, mind you, but dear sweet baby Jesus, I pray that one day, yes, we will have our very own avocado tree!!!)

When we first moved to Maui a little over two years ago, our dear landlord’s wife would bring us fresh fruits and veggies on a regular basis. One day she brought us the largest honkin’ black produce we’d ever seen. We didn’t know quite what to do with it. And we didn’t know quite what it was, in fact. So we waited to cut it open. And we waited…and waited some more. Finally, one day I got brave enough and opened up the thing. Just as you probably suspect, lo and behold it was an avocado! The largest avocado I’d ever laid eyes on in my entire life!!!

From that day forward when a neighbor or friend brought us fruits or veggies, we would never hesitate to open the ripened avocados, or ask what the other mysterious foods were…I mean, it could cost us guacamole and we believe in the importance of no avocado left behind. Blessed avocados…Ahh, so yummy!

Have you ever had fresh avocado from Hawaii? What’s your favorite guacamole recipe? I’m a Tex-Mex fan, so do share! Oh yeah, remember if you wanna find me on Instagram, I’m Island Gypsy Hawaii. And if you’d like to receive each blog post via email just subscribe on the sidebar. Mahalo!

Aloha,
Jennifer

Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

Aloha…it’s morning here in Maui and while my plate is quite full this month, I thought it would be fun to semi-do the “A to Z Challenge” but not really. I can’t really commit to posting every day…but I might. We shall see how this all unfolds. But as you can tell from the image above, I am kicking off a series titled, “Instagramming Maui: A to Z of My Island Life.”

 

The reasons for this series:

1. I’m an Instagram “newbie” & would like to connect more with you on it.

2. Who doesn’t want to see what island life is like?

3. Focusing on “A to Z” will give me a boundary for each post…like my first post will obviously start with the letter “A.”

4. It’s an opportunity to open up more on my blog, like I shared yesterday.

So that’s my new series in a nutshell. Have you written a series lately? Are you an Instagram fanatic? Is there anything you’re curious about in regard to living in Hawaii? Let me know in the comments & I look forward to sharing this journey with you…one letter at a time!

Oh yeah, if you wanna find me on Instagram, I’m Island Gypsy Hawaii, of course! If you’d like to receive each blog post via email just subscribe on the sidebar. For easy access, I’ll also include links to the entire series at the bottom of this post. Mahalo!

With mucho aloha,

Jennifer

psst…You can check out my recent guest post on A Maui Blog here. Nick Vujicic is coming to Maui & I shared about the community event.

 

Instagram-Maui-Island-Gypsy-Hawaii

A is for Avocado

B is for Beach Ballet Beauty

C is for Coffee

D is for Dress-Up

E is for Eco-Friendly

F is for Festival

G is for Gypsy

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

Z

My Maui Life…

Aloha y’all,

It’s a rainy morning in Upcountry Maui. Sitting on our hand-me-down rattan couch, with the sheet I use to cover the ugly 90s floral print coming up, (because once again, the sheet doesn’t understand it’s supposed to cover the couch, not hang loose) I prop my legs up on the coffee table and stare out the window watching the rain pour down and the wind blow all around. And I think.

You see, when it comes to my life in Maui, and thinking of all the things I can share with you, I become tongue-tied and my mind draws a blank. Honestly, moving here two years ago was the hugest step of faith our family had taken…and living here is something so close to my heart…the dream and adventure of it all working itself out…it’s a very personal journey.

So, sure, it’s easy for me to write about the Farmer’s Markets and goings-on over on A Maui Blog, or to write about the Haiku Ho’olaule’a & Flower Festival coming up to support our kids’ school, or even now as a contributing writer for Maui Family Magazine (my first issue to be published in will come out in May 2014). But when it comes to my blog on Island Gypsy Hawaii, I lose my words…but they are there…stirring in my heart, welling up in my soul and on the tip of my fingers.

Perhaps they will pour out like these island rains one day soon. Until then…I leave you with one of my photos, where my perspective is captured through my eyes, instead.

Kapalua-Bay-Maui-happy-day-Jennifer-Poppy

With mucho aloha,
Jennifer