Are we there yet?

I feel as though we are chasing the sun. Our trip ended up taking four hours longer. After arriving in LA, we had approximately a 4 hour layover but then it got pushed back to a total of 8 hours. Sad part is, we didn’t find this out until they announced it a half hour before our original boarding time. So, instead of taking off into LA for 6 hours, we ended up going out for 2.

Thanks to mom, who stayed at the airport and watched all our luggage, we were able to not worry about that. Dad, Mi Amor, and I walked to Trader Joe’s to get cheap healthy food to bring back. {And it was dad’s first time to California!} 

After meeting a very sweet British couple who have lived in Hawaii for the last two years, we played trivia with them in the terminal. Boy am I glad I brought the little trivia tin along! We connected with them and they were a very interesting couple!  

Restless, sore, and tummy feeling odd, the flight seemed longer than it was. BUT-WE MADE IT TO OAHU!


Hawaii 2.0

Stars shine with an orange moon as we drive to the airport at 4a.m. My wrinkly eyes squint after only three hours of sleep.

Sunrise brings light over Chicago as our plane lands for a quick layover. My stomach has always had problems when traveling, cause I tend to eat things like granola bars and trailmix and dried fruit…my mom saved my morning by having a fresh apple to pair with the other snacks.

Note to the travelers: bring fresh fruit or carrots with lemon water to help keep you refreshed and not weighed down and bloated.

But for real now, back to the trip.

The backstory: Mi Amor and I went on a trip the end of February (2 months ago) to Hawaii Kai (south east Oahu) via ticket vouchers through Delta Airlines and allowed us to work on an organic farm in the mornings in exchange for food and stay. In other words: we went to hawaii with all our needs met and only spent money when we wanted to. We went on an adventure.

The weekend we bought our tickets online in early January, my mom sent a confirmation email “GET THESE DATES OFF WORK!”

We are being spoiled by my parents; they are taking my brother and I, along with our spouses to the North Shore of Oahu for one week. ITS ALL IN HONOR OF THEIR MARRIAGE!!! They have been married for 35 years and have saved and dreamed of this trip for a long while…

And it’s finally here.

Keep up with our travels as I blog each day about the adventures and relaxing times.

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Oh and we crossed over The Grand Canyon.

Snorkeling through Smoothies

Monday was the start of our typical farm week. We woke up and weeded, cut banana trees, made sure the animals had water, and communicated with the two other workers here from San Diego and New Mexico. We got to take a look at the nursery and how that works to put good plants in good soil and give them a chance against weeds. Because it’s organic farming you have to hand weed, so there’s care that goes into every plant, every day. 

Think about what the grocery store food goes through. Chemicals, and fake sunshine sometimes, then being picked and sprayed with preservative, then shipped to a store to be bought and sit for a few days at your house…it’s old food.

Organic: workers make their own soil, manually turn on the water daily, hand weed, and spend time protecting this life form that will eventually give back life to you. 

It’s a beautiful cycle that once the food has matured and is picked for a market or a table, it is treasured. So much effort went into it.

And it’s taste is irreplaceable.

Mi Amor and I were talking about how slaves would be forced to stay in the fields and yield a crop of great proportion and to work fast they would sing songs to keep on rhythm.

So Mi Amor and I decided to make our own slave song and remember the ones we were taught from childhood as well.

It’s good to laugh and joke…we try to make it all fun.

After our morning of work, we ate a late lunch and made it from the veggies of the land. Talking to the guy from New Mexico, he told us to hit Hanauma Bay.

And so we took our snorkel and mask, borrowed from Grandparents (thank you!!) and hiked over…what a gorgeous place. Research some pictures, it’s absolutely incredible.

The fish and the coral, the view and the salt water waves…all of it: perfect.

And if you come at 4, you can watch a movie of preservation of the reef at 4:15 and get in for free! So we did. And we put our name on a list so if we go back within 365 days, we don’t have to watch the movie and can go right to the beach.  

Oh And dinner was awesome. We made a DELICIOUS kale and squash soup, had chicken and veggie burgers, and while I was doing that our host mom made smoothies, one that was a piña colada green and a fall harvest with cinnamon and vanilla! 

We were stuffed and talked story the whole time around the outdoor kitchen. What a blessing to be here.

So, it’s Tuesday morning and I reflect on the previous day while I write all my blogs and I feel sunburned today. Weeding in the sun gives me an awkward sun tan for sure! 

Off to make a smoothie with coconut milk and begin another adventurous day lived on purpose.

And then there were critters…

The first day we experienced the Saturday roadside stands, waking up to a double rainbow in the sky, the tour of the farm, and some skills; we cut leaves from banana trees that were dead, finding out about the creatures that live in those too…giant cane spiders, centipedes longer than my fingers, slugs as big as my big toe, and cute little geckos. We weeded beds with baby daikon in them. Got to take a shower outdoors and experience some skills of how to cook the food they grow on the farm. 

We took off in the evening for a walk to the ocean, experiencing sunset and coral. I had looked up Kona Brewery and we headed there for a treat. 

Everyone here has been so nice. We pass people on the street and they make eye contact and say hello–not the creepy kind that makes you uncomfortable..the hospitable kind that makes you say, “Aloha”.

This is the view from our tent in the morning, atop the farm with all the ornamental banana trees

Today is Sunday, we are up early to work the land and then go hiking!

O’hare..not the rabbit

Grandma and Grandpa drove us down to O’Hare airport giving them an excuse to go to Chicago for the day! 

We are super blessed to have the ride down, especially because I was able to finish my hand stitched leather backpack!! (Special thanks to a friend who graciously gave me the leather! You know who you are!) and Rizo for taking me to goodwill to get a handbag to cut apart for the clasps. 🙂 

I’ll do some more work when we get back there’s some details i’d like to finish up.

Here’s our update from Chicago! 

Aloha, here we come.

In one week Mi Amor and I shall be off to Hawaii, checking off one more place on our bucket lists.

How is it possible to go to Oahu for less than $200 total for two people?
This is how we’re doing it.

When we went to California last spring break, we were coming back on a layover in Minneapolis and our flight was overbooked by one seat. Mi Amor and I stayed behind and since no one else volunteered they had no choice but to take us both. (muahahhahaha)
We got vouchers through the airline and stayed in Minneapolis for the afternoon with my cousins who live there (how perfect!).

We wanted to use these vouchers this spring break and of course, go somewhere warm we hadn’t been. Off to SkyScanner to search for the best flight deals to warm places.
Hawaii, hmm, okay sounds AWESOME… even though my parents are taking my brother, his wife, Mi Amor and I to Turtle Bay the end of April to celebrate their 35th wedding anniversary, we’d have a TOTALLY different experience.

SO, now that we found out flying into Honolulu would be cheapest, how would we stay there for free? my friends, yes yes.
This is a safe and secure website where hosts upload profiles, pictures, and whatnot, while help-exchangers do the same. We created a profile for $29 that lasts 2 years. We searched local hosts on Oahu and were accepted by an organic farm on the south side by Koko Head!
We are going to be working with a family who has established an organic farm and frequents farmers markets. We will stay there and eat there in exchange for us working 30 hours. ((HECK YES!))

Can you imagine what a fantastic experience it’ll be getting to be a part of the community?

Mi Amor and I have watched documentaries and read the history on Hawaii to better prepare ourselves and its just simply amazing how much that will change our experience.

Keep up with us as I hope to log our daily adventures.

cameron klingenberg-01

Yearly Leave

Goin’ away till next year!

On the 27th I’m flyin’ to Minnesota to be with family, sharing in the traditions and memories…all thanks to my parents for my one-way-ticket for Christmas!

Life this year just seems to be ending wonderfully, sliding into 2013 with a cheshire smile..