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Island life

July 26, 2021

Back in 2001 David & I put everything we owned into a storage unit and loaded our backpacks and Mt bikes and moved to Molokai’ Hawaii. We had jobs lined up as sea kayak and Mt bike tour guides for a 64,000 acre working cattle ranch known as Molokai Ranch. The ranch specialized in eco-tourism offering zip lines, archery, Hawaiian history hikes, outdoor showers, sea cliff yearts and fish pond tours. It’s the closest ive been to heaven on earth. No city lights, no stop lights, and no buildings taller than a coconut tree. We had no tv and rode freely before owning a cellphone, email address and social media. Before arriving I was a bit nervous that the locals may not accept me. I was fearful that they might feel threatened because I had taken away a job that they might need. These insecurities were quickly replaced with new friendships. Our experience was infact the exact opposite of what I’d feared. We were welcomed with open arms. We kayaked together, spear fished together. We shared meals together, rode dry & dusty bike trails together, swam in waterfalls together and hiked the tallest sea cliffs in the world together. One morning while listening to NPR we realized the airplane that flew into the World Trade Center was intentional. In that moment everyone’s world stopped. Where were you on September 11, 201? The airport closed, the island stopped. our job ended and so did our time on Molokai. David had work waiting for him on Maui, and so it was time to move. This was another season of uncertainty. Where would we live? Could I find work post 9/11? I didn’t even have a car. And little by little we found our way. Opportunities came to us. We trusted the process and had a blast together!

I always encouraged David to “Go for it”. Like when he applied for the Maui County Police Academy. And again when we applied for Self-Help Housing. We worked hard and played hard. We still are. We we’re married 9 years before we decided to grow our family. After living on Maui for 3 years we got pregnant. We made the decision to move back to Washington to live in my childhood home to raise our children near family in the little town of Arlington where David & I met. I slowly turned our small vegetable patch into a flower farm and in 2019 Flourish Organic Farms LLC was born. I crossed paths with Twig N Vine when I began searching for likeminded farmers in my area. I found Deanna an encouragement and mentor. Deanna has a heart for service and education. In April 2019 I took the opportunity to visit her farm and learned about The Growing Kindness Project. I left with inspiration and new friendships. With my love for Hawaii and Growing Kindness I connected with fellow Ambassador Paige of Three Trees and Bees on The Big Island of Hawaii. I was curious what flower varieties flourished on island and what her growing season looked like. This week my family vacationed in Waikoloa Hawaii. I reached out to Paige and she graciously welcomed us for a family farm tour. Upon arriving we were greeted with Aloha like old friends with a big hug and smile. Interesting how The Growing Kindness Project brought us together. We are on parallel journeys sharing our passion for flowers & ohana. We talked story while sharing gardening tips and tricks. We met Dougie the duck, marshmallow the sheep and the rescue horses. We saw the honeybee hives, iron wood & pine trees. We picked fresh avacado, and toured her garden. I was impressed with the long stems, vibrant colors and dark amended soil. Their is something satisfying about connection, It’s inspiring. This visit was a full circle moment at many levels. It was so therapeutic to return to the islands. Rewarding to share Hawaii with our children. Seeing them snorkel with turtles and brave the waves. This adventure was a welcomed break from our farms chores. I’m excited to return home to see the growth of the garden. We’ve had record high temperatures while away. Thankfully my Mom & her fiancé Martin we’re willing to water and feed so we could get away! Mahalo

Molokai 2001

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