Lessons.

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I gotta tell you. The last six months of 2015 was rough. A friend of mine said that it was right around the time that all of the planets aligned and with it, brings a crazy type of energy that makes everything happen all at the same time. Whatever it was, it brought a case of the shingles on the left side of my face and head, surgery, roof damage, Mom’s spinal stenosis confirmation, new Lupus joint pain, and a robbery right before Thanksgiving (yea, the burglar was STILL in the house when we came home). I ended the year quietly at home taking care of Mom and having a beautiful meal accompanied by a glass of red wine. I watched Ryan Seacrest’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve for a bit, then passed out. Earlier in the day, I smudged the entire house with a brand new bundle of White Sage.

Only a few weeks into 2016, I can tell you that the lessons of 2015 remain. They are reminders to be better prepared and strengthen the muscles so that you can weather the storms. Many say that God only gives you what you can handle, so I’m guessing that he must have an enormous amount of faith in me to give me so much in such a short amount of time. That’s where my church comes in. Anchor Church (formerly known as Hope Chapel Kaneohe Bay) has been my beacon of hope and Sunday school, if you will. I am re-learning my spiritual side and learning to have faith in all that life throws at you. I am so thankful for the loving staff and team, and especially Pastor Carl, Pastor Tom, and Pastor Tami, who somehow find the right message to share with me at the right time.

Still with everything that’s happened, I won’t back down. I wake up each day and try again. Many who have their ups and downs like me do the same. So whatever path life has you on whether smooth or somewhat rocky, still get out there. Take each day as it comes and just do your best. I’m cheering you on, as I know you would for me. Let’s make 2016 a healthy, happy, and prosperous one.

“…May this new year be a time of deep spiritual growth for us,

A time of welcoming your graces and gifts,

A time for forgiving freely and unconditionally,

A time for growing in virtue and goodness….”

What a year. #Blessed.

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What a year 2014 has been. It was  full of wonderful projects, promotions, publicity, and special events. I’ve been blessed to attract work that I love and care about. Not many can say that. And while I’m excited to see what will be in store for 2015, I thought I’d share just a few highlights of the blur that was this year.

Ola Ka Ha was a great first time event put together by the hard working #bossgirls, Mailani Makainai and Kau’i Dalire at HA Enterprises. It brought attention to the Iolani Palace and the repairs needed to keep it pristine. It was so well attended and showcased some of the best of our island talent. Even more exciting is that it built community awareness and hopefully, the event will become an annual one.

Hula Nation Filmworks and Keo Woolford have been on a wild ride with its first feature full-length film, The Haumana. If you haven’t heard of it, you may have been under a rock. This has been one of the most successful projects I’ve ever had the pleasure of representing. In short, the film is what I affectionately term as “the gift that keeps on giving,” because it does just that. It has won numerous film festival awards, has been in over 200 theatrical screenings, and is now on its international tour in Japan and Mexico, with Europe on the horizon.

KoAloha Ukulele is like family to me. The team led by Mom & Pops Okami and sons, Alan & Paul Okami, are some of the hardest working individuals I have ever met. I’m always inspired by their work ethic and also their huge hearts. They create one of the most beautiful instruments in the world, the ukulele, and have brought love into the world through their woodcraft via community performances and workshops at the Grammy Museum and the Japanese American National Museum, among others.

Sean Olanui Robbins and Kaimi Hanano’eau- two artists that make me so happy for the future of music in Hawaii. Both are up-and-coming stars and full of talent, yet very humble and respectful. Sean is known for his progressive slack key style and is the protege of Cyril Pahinui. Kaimi is known as the lead of the alternative/rock/reggae band, HiRiZ, but also recognized as a soloist with an extensive music background. It will be fun watching these two rise to the top.

When I relocated back home to O’ahu from L.A. a few years ago, my goal was (and has always been) to help others by sharing their stories. I’m hoping to continue same in 2015, and by the way things are shaping up, it looks like there are more exciting projects on the horizon. Happy holidays and I hope we get to work together in the new year. I am truly #blessed.