Category: Made in Maui

New Toby Neal book – Rip Tides!

Maui Author Toby Neal’s newly released
crime novel – Rip Tides!

In January I wrote about finding Maui author Toby Neal‘s ‘Lei Crime Series’ on Amazon.

Guess what!?!? The latest book (#9) of the series just came out on Amazon this week. It’s called ‘Rip Tides‘ and the murder takes place at Paia’s own Ho’okipa beach – a great place to go check out the surfers. Yes, I downloaded it to my kindle app (free if you have a Kindle Unlimited subscription, otherwise $4.99), and just finished the book today. No surprise here – it’s another great read!

Thank you Toby! I have now read every book she’s written…. now what? Time to discover another local author. I’ll let you know what I find!!

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Molokai Sweet Bread

A few months ago I saw a stand for Molokai Sweet Bread at the Made in Maui Festival at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center. There was a huge line and I have to admit, I was intrigued. But it was drizzling, and much else to see, so I didn’t stand in line and I didn’t get any.

This weekend a local kids’ basketball team is selling Molokai Sweet Bread as a fundraiser. What was I to do? We have to support the kids, right?

It’s light and fluffy and sweet. I toasted it lightly, topped it with my favorite raspberry jam and paired it with a good cup of coffee. It made a perfect breakfast!

If you see it anywhere, give it a try! Or maybe you’ll have to take the ferry to Molokai for the full experience.

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New Jim Freeheart Mural in Kihei!

Have you seen part-time Maui resident Jim Freeheart‘s latest mural? It’s public art located at Kihei’s Kamalii Elementary School.

Jim Freeheart is an artist from Boulder Colorado who spends a fair chunk of his time on Maui. While here, he often volunteers his time at local schools, teaching art classes and, most recently, painting a mural.

Jim Freeheart working on his mural at Kamalii Elementary School (March 2015)

The kids have been so excited to watch Mr Freeheart as he painted this beautiful mural on the side of one of the buildings, taking time to check out the latest progress or talk with him as he painted.

Completed Jim Freeheart mural at Kamalii Elementary School (April 2015)

Do you spot the monkey?? What is it with that monkey? Mr Freeheart has been bringing a monkey puppet when volunteering in class (whom he calls Freeheart the Monkey). Hidden in the mural are also an owl (the school’s mascot – the pueo) and a humpback whale. I’ll have to go look for them!

So….. can you go see it? You can actually see it from the school’s parking lot. However, please go into the office and sign in with the office staff. It is a school and there are security measures that need to be followed to keep the kids safe. Mahalo.

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Meet metal artist Richard Digiacomo

This week I was shopping for a special gift and came across the Maui Hands art gallery in Makawao. Maui Hands is an art gallery with four locations on Maui (Lahaina, Paia, Makawao and the Hyatt in Kaanapali) representing the works of 300 Hawaiian artists, many of them living here on Maui. Do check them out! They have a great variety!

We got lucky as Maui metal artist Richard Digiacomo was in residence on Thursday. Not only did we buy one of his color infused aluminum etchings, we also got to talk with him and have our picture taken. Cool! Did you know, that Mr Digiacomo has a prison ministry, working with prisoners after their release?

I particularly love this wave and the way the color comes to life in the light! You can hang it at an angle (as being held) or straight. Very cool.

Richard will be at the Makawao Maui Hands gallery every Thursday in March. Come watch him at work and talk story with him. Additionally for the rest of March there is a 20% discount off his etchings at the Makawao store!

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Frank Lloyd Wright Design right here on Maui!

Do you love architecture? Have you heard of famous American architect Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959)?

Today I attended a conference at the King Kamehameha Golf Course in Waikapu. This is a private golf course, but from time to time there are functions at the club house. It sure is an interesting building. Someone at my table informed me that Frank Lloyd Wright had originally designed this building (in a smaller form) for Marilyn Monroe and her husband Arthur Miller. What? Surely they didn’t need a house this size?

This prompted a bit of digging and I found a brochure with lots more info. And yes, while the house wasn’t originally designed for Marilyn Monroe, it was pitched to her in 1957. However, she didn’t end up going with this design.

In the late 80s the original design was modified and increased in size to build this club house with a total building area of approximately 74,000 sq ft. According to the brochure two thirds of the structure are actually under ground. Do check their website for better pictures of the building itself!

If you have the opportunity, check it out. It is quite something, and the bi-coastal views up here are just amazing! And if you are like to golf, they do have a ‘guest for a day‘ program – try out the course for $170 plus tax per person.

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Which local coffee to buy at Costco?

Do your eyes glaze over in the coffee aisle at Costco? If you’re like me, you want to try the Hawaiian coffees, but when buying one or even two pound bags, you’re just not sure which one to commit to.

We have just finished enjoying this one, Nickybeans 100% Kona Coffee… this was the first time we’ve had it, and it was really nice. Costco is currently selling it for just under $20/1 lb bag.

Yes, it’s whole bean coffee – but if you’re staying at one of our four condos, you can use the coffee grinder to grind the beans, so the coffee is nice and fresh.

Mmmmm… coffee! Time for another cup 🙂

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I got to meet Maui’s very own Rachel Ray!

Have you heard of Rachel Ray? No, not the chef, the Maui artist! She paints the most beautiful paintings. I’ve bought many of her cards, and most recently have three of her prints hanging above the bed at our Sugar Beach condo.

three Rachel Ray prints above the bed at our Sugar Beach condo

My Austrian friend Dany’s store Maui Memories (in Wailea Gateway Plaza) stocks some of Rachel’s cards and prints, but today I was in search of the new 2015 calendars. I had seen on Rachel’s website that I could get them at the U’i Gallery in Kahului, so on today’s Kahului trip I went looking for that gallery. It was very easy to find, located in the strip mall/industrial area on the corner of Dairy Road and the Hana Hwy (same as the Maui Coffee Roasters etc). As for the gallery name – U’i (pronounced Oo-ee) means beautiful in Hawaiian.

Rachel Ray’s art gallery in Kahului

When I walked in the door, there she was, Rachel Ray coming down the stairs with her youngest daughter. What a surprise! Rachel and her husband Duke run this gallery which features mainly Rachel’s art but also some Randy Jay Braun and a few other artists. You have got to check out their gallery, especially if you are looking for Christmas items. Rachel gave me a tour of the gallery – from cards, to mouse pads, to cutting boards, posters, original art, Ni’ihau shell jewelry, koa wood art etc, there’s something for everyone’s budget. Rachel and Duke were wonderfully friendly and welcoming.

Yes, I got my seven calendars (she autographed one for me) – and a few more cards! I will be back, that’s for sure! Check them out on facebook for up-to-date news!

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Gourd Christmas ornaments

Oh my goodness….. Today at the Made in Maui Festival I just couldn’t resist these two guys…. Maui Christmas ornaments – a sand man and a shark…

help help, the shark with the crazy teeth is going to eat me!
revenge of the sand man! Death to the gourd-shark 🙂

These and many more gourd ornaments are made by Jennifers Gourds! Check her out!

By the way, how was the festival? Really good – unfortunately it was showering on and off again, but there are 130 vendors – lots of selection – and goes til 4:30pm this afternoon! I made a great start to my Christmas shopping.

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Deep Island Hawaiian Rum

Ocean Vodka, a Maui-based distillery, has started selling their very own rum this past month. It’s called Deep Island Hawaiian Rum, and is a clear rum made from their organic sugar cane and deep ocean mineral water. It is produced at their farm & distillery in Kula.

How is it? We added it to pog (passion orange guava juice), wow! That went down really smooth. Not sure about their label design – somewhat pirate-y perhaps.

Also, Ocean Vodka has recently changed the design of their vodka bottle. Look for the new bottle on store shelves shortly.

Curious about these Maui-made spirits? Book a farm/distillery tour at their farm on Omaopio Road in Kula. It’s really interesting!

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