Because it’s just better in Maui

Maui palm trees / funkyjunkinteriors.net
While cooling off at the pool one afternoon while in Maui, I noted one gal that was there every day. Her tan gave her away. I knew she was probably there for more than a quick vacation… so, curious, we struck up a conversation. 

She confessed most of her tan was actually from home! She only lives 1 hour from me… but on a beach.

But she also lived in Maui. She bought a unit in our complex many years ago, and obviously retired, she comes and goes as desired.

Wow. Nice! But I was curious…

“So, if you live on a beach, why would you have a place here?”

She didn’t even hesitate. “I love where I live, but It’s just better here. Everything is just better.”

Nodding in complete agreement, I knew exactly what she meant.

Maui tropical trees / funkyjunkinteriors.net
It’s easy to spot why Hawaii is considered paradise. Not because everything is perfect… because it isn’t. But moreso… the climate, and the surroundings.

I wish I could bottle up the constant tropical breezes and warm salty sea air, fragranced with blooms everywhere you walk. There is just nothing quite like it. 

You can feel the difference when you get off the plane. Most buildings are open air, so the trade winds carry right through.

While waiting to board the plane home, I left the comforts of the air conditioned waiting area so I could feel that special Maui air one last time.


Rainbow tree petals in Maui / funkyjunkinteriors.net
Being here for 6 weeks made for a far different vacation than trying to fit in everything in two weeks.

You had time to saturate yourself into the lifestyle, sounds, smells, and aloha spirit.

I know that sounds like an advertisement, but that spirit really exists. It’s a lifestyle, that is very different from anything else. You are encouraged to chill, slow down, get barefoot and go for a walk on the beach.

Even the locals spend a lot of time on the beach. You could spot a local kiddo a mile away. Small kids handling big waves with complete ease vs. a grown tourist (me) would dash away from anything frothing, to avoid getting knocked over…

Rainbow tree petals in Maui / funkyjunkinteriors.net


Tropical trees and flowers in Maui / funkyjunkinteriors.net
So where does one even start after coming home from such an epic adventure?

I don’t know. I’ve started about 4 posts, but I can’t quite put my finger on how to showcase this one best.

I mean, there are the gardens, things to see, best travel tips, the beauty of the beaches, awesome things to eat, and the stories… ohhhh the stories. What would YOU like to hear about?

I don’t want to throw up 100 posts, but I’d eventually like to do something special with some pictures. Any ideas?

Red ginger, Hawaiian flower in Maui / funkyjunkinteriors.net
I won’t lie. It wasn’t easy to come home. During the day of lasts, I sat on the sandy beach watching the sunset, when my pictures drawn in the sand started to get blurry through my tears.

So should you ask if it’s good to be home? I will answer it’s great to see the cats, and have things to do.

But for all else?

No. ๐Ÿ™‚

But I’ll take that to mean, the vacation was a success, and I’d do it all over again in a quick heartbeat.

Plumeria, Hawaiian flower in Maui / funkyjunkinteriors.net

It should come as no surprise that I was astonished how barren and dry my own yard looked at home in comparison to my tropical yard.

So while I wandered the yard, trying to focus on something… anything, I started pulling a few weeds out of the dusty soil. Then grabbed the clippers, and reshaped a few shrubs.

In no time, I had several wheelbarrows full, and a new angle to tackle. 

It’s time to make my own yard Maui lush…. or as nice as it can be.

Rainbow tree, Hawaiian flower in Maui / funkyjunkinteriors.net
So bear with me as I get busy, making my driveway look like this… ๐Ÿ˜‰

And that ends the aimless rambling for today. So I’d love your opinion…

What would you like to see and hear about?

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  1. We love Maui and especially Dave & Susan’s place on Napili Point. Where did you stay this time? You said in an earlier post that you liked it even more.

    • Hi Jan, we stayed at Kihei Akahi. It was a very different experience than Napili, but in a good way too. They are hard to compare, because both offer something so different.

      Napili Point was kind of about never leaving the grounds. It had its own beach and snorkel bay, hard to beat that. But we found the surrounding area a little too quiet for my active on the go son. I wanted places he could walk to.

      Kihei did that and more for him, for us. It was a beautiful place. I loved being ground level and wandered it many times with coffee or camera in hand. But while the beach wasn’t right in front of us, it was so near we could hear the crashing waves from our unit. A few steps and you were there if you chose the windy, sandy beach.

      Kihei’s shore breaks are also much larger this time of year due to the south coast winds. But… there’s barely any rain. It’s known as the desert of Maui. So interesting that the humidity does all the work keeping that growth lush!

      So very different, but as an overall package, our Kihei destination this round really nailed everything we needed… and more. ๐Ÿ™‚ Much more price efficient too! We couldn’t have managed Napili area for 6 weeks for all of the above reasons.

      Thanks for asking!

  2. I’m sure you had a wonderful time, but, personally, I’m ready for you to get back to being creative in your own special way! Looking forward to it.

    • Teddee, I thought I was too. I missed creating. But for two days I’ve been dropping tools and just making more of a mess. My heart hasn’t arrived to Canada quite yet. It will… soon. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I do love food posts. But you know what, I think you covered Maui in photos so well that I wouldn’t be disappointed if you just stopped there and went back to your own new ideas and projects now that you are back home. I will probably never get to visit Hawaii. My finances just won’t allow it. Knowing that, when I see others vacation photos from places I know I’ll never visit, I get a bit wistful and start feeling sorry for myself. I know that is ridiculous but I do it. I read another woman’s blog and I swear she is going to some exotic place ever turn of the page, literally. I kinda get travel weary reading her blog and the ole’ green eyed monster pops out and I have to take a break. I’m happy for people who can afford to travel but what made me fall in love with your blog wasn’t the travel posts… it is your undying creativity and upbeat attitude. Bring lots of that to the table and I’m so there with you!! ๐Ÿ™‚ Love your blog, Donna! Please don’t take this comment in a negative way at all. I am thrilled you were able to get away and you deserve that time. But you asked what I wanted to see or hear about and it’s quite opposite of Maui! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Karen, the very last thing on earth I want readers to feel is jealousy. My plan had been to infuse a little more than just pretty pictures. Kinda more like what Joan below requested.

      I don’t expect anyone to feel sorry for me (LOL) but I’m having a bit of a struggle getting back on course again. It’ll come…. it’s just not here yet.

      Yesterday I tried to find the sunset but it was HARD! I had to step on a road and jump. No wonder it was never a thing when home! haha

      Oh boy…

  4. Yes I agree with Karen. It is your creativity that we all “tune in” for. Happy that you and your son had such a great time.

  5. ,,,Enjoyed your Maui posts but love your creative side too! I am thrilled that you and your son had such a wonderful time. It sounds like you didn’t really want to leaveโ€ฆ.If you love and feel comfortable thereโ€ฆ.any thoughts of moving there? Might be a real possibility and you could continue your blog/projects/work from thereโ€ฆ..

    • Hi Leigh, it would be a dream for sure. But being Canadian makes things really tricky living and working wise. There are restrictions like crazy unless you become a full fledged citizen.

      I’m also not certain it would hold the same lustre if I lived inland where most residents do, and worked day in and day out vs. vacationing mode. Very different experience I’m sure.

      But it is making me actively think about what’s missing at home and why I struggle moreso here. I’m always wanting / needing to escape to something else. Now I just have to figure out what I’m trying to escape from. It could be my need to be near water, which I’ve felt for years. It could be my home, period. I have lots of inner searching to do.

      But you are sweet to suggest it. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Donna, When I need to write about something I just write about things as they come into my head.no order alphabetical, or chronological, when I remember something, it must be worth remembering. Please don’t let a couple of negative comments color your ideas. I’m willing to bet most will agree,yeah we love diy and junk and all those great ideas, But your writing and humor and adventure all play into who you are and what you share with us and your writing style.
    I Love it all and can’t wait for more pictures, and adventure stories.
    Judy A-

  7. Thank you for sharing how torn you must feel as you experience the great contrasts of your two ‘homes’.When I moved from one state to another and then traveled back and forth every month or so it made me feel like a person without a country, so to speak. My emotions didn’t know where I belonged because there were ties in both places.
    Personally, I would love to know more of what touched your heart and that of your son while you were away. The more you share the more I get a real sense of what this environment must be like. A friend in college used to tell me about the aroma of the flowers that saturated the air around the home she stayed in. I never tired of her sharing her life altering experience.
    By the way, how did the cats react when you finally got home? Your friends that took care of them must have really gotten attached.
    Once again I say that while I enjoy your creativity in building things, that is not why I continue to read your posts. It is how you share your life, your views, humor, and insights. Thanks for just being you.

    • Oh Joan…. your comment has me wanting to write a book as a reply. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Yes… feeling a little lost in between two homes at the moment. I’m waiting for my heart to catch up. You truly get it.

      Funny thing… the cats didn’t seem all that bewildered when we walked in the door. They haven’t been clingy or anything. That tells me the house sitters did such a good job, they barely noticed us gone. That makes me SO HAPPY!

      Because a big chunk of my heart was at home with them the entire time, wondering…

      I will share more of your requests for sure!

  8. I’m with Joan and Judy on this one…although I love junking and DIY, it is *YOUR* commentary on those things that I keep coming back for, otherwise; there are tons of other junking blogs I could be visiting, but to my mind, it wouldn’t be the same because *YOU* are the special ingredient that makes this blog special!

    I just enjoy you riffing on anything, basically…I’ve enjoyed reading your story about where you came from and how you worked to get yourself to this awesome point in your life. You are a very thoughtful person and I enjoy reading your reflections on pretty much everything…nine and a half times out of ten, I’m nodding my head as I’m reading because I can sooooo relate…but you put it better than I ever could!

    I don’t get much chance to travel, either, as I am a caregiver to ill family members, but rather than being envious of your travels, I find myself inspired…your photos are simply fantastic and always have me dreaming of sunnier climes…it’s nice to have an escape like that now and then, even if it isn’t a physical one…thank you for giving me that!

    Okay, so I’ve wrote a freakin’ novel here and still haven’t answered the question you asked…I guess what I would love to read about in regards to your Maui trip is what you really feel like writing about because I find you are at your best when you are at your most authentic! I dearly hope you will do what it is your heart leads you to do…after all, that’s how you got here in the first place, so your heart much know what it’s doing, right? ๐Ÿ™‚

    • My Susan… yep, I’ve claimed ownership on you! Haha!

      You are so right. My heart will know what to say when it’s time. Thank-you for wishing to hear what it needs to say. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Have you ever considered adoption, Donna? I just want to tell you, I am pretty well behaved and also been told that I’m a decent cook…hehe!

        Seriously, I have a feeling that whichever angle you choose to take in regards to your Maui vacation, it is going to resonate with many of your readers because I’m not the only one who keeps coming back for *YOU*! As long as you are going where your heart leads, you can never fail! Looking very forward to reading your thoughts, as always! ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. So I gather you enjoyed your time in Maui. LOL
    Nice relaxing getaways to a lovely scenic place can be so enjoyable. I am more of a forest person. I have friends who love trips to tropical locations and are going to Fiji in October. I bet the gardens were so wonderful and good to hear you are inspired!

  10. Donna, I would love to see anything Maui related on your blog because I know you enjoyed it so much! I cant wait to see how Maui adds to your creativity now! I expect to see some pops of color in you Junk !

  11. YOU are why we keep coming back to your blog. I did enjoy your Maui posts and would love to hear (read) all about it. I have never had a desire to go to Hawaii, I live in Florida near the west coast and our weather is somewhat similar. You blog has me wanting to visit Canada one day! So happy for you that you were able to enjoy a longer vacation.

  12. As much as I miss you home in your creative part of the world… I’m thinking you need to relocate. Your Hawaiian vacations have had me in awe. It’s a reflection of you and seems to be calling you back. It brings out the best in you. (Your writing is so calm while you’re there) I’m wondering if you can “re-plant” your creative Canadian self in Maui permanently. If you decide to… we will all still be here looking for more of you. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Stunning pics, as per usual. Glad you had a great vacation and that you were sad to leave. I wanted so badly to come and surprise you with a visit, but just couldn’t make it happen. Glad you’re home (I’m a little selfish that way ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) Coffee soon my friend! ox

    • Okay, I should really proof read BEFORE hitting send. lol “Glad you had a great vacation and sad that you were sad . . . “

  14. Hi Donna! As a fellow landlocked Canadian, I am simply impressed with your choices. Your Maui posts were awesome and the photos spectacular, but I think what I most enjoyed most was the connection between you and your son. Time goes by so quickly and so many parts of our lives change.

    I think you earned, needed and deserved this break to reflect on life, loss and love and even though it’s difficult to come home (no matter where the vacation was) your heart will point you in the right direction.

    I’m looking forward to looking at your photos, reading about your adventures, your creative work, your day to day life and simple “coffee chats”. Even though we don’t know each other personally, you brighten my day, you make me smile and you encourage me to think outside the box and do things that are just meant for me.

    Keep on being true to yourself. Thanks for the virtual friendship connection (in a totally non stalkerish way….lol.)