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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Privacy Policy lavish interior design

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Decorating for a New Year's Eve Party – Part Two

There are plenty of banners available at party stores that you could hang near the entry way of your home or even outside the front door. You can make a banner too, if you are the artistic type. A metallic banner can match a more sophisticated theme. If you are having a party where there will be lots of kids, consider having them make the banner as well as the noise makers. All they will need to make a fun banner is a large piece of construction paper, stencils, and markers.

Centerpieces on the tables are a nice touch that can really make your decorating stand out. There is no need to buy one already put together, because there are plenty of ways you can put together a cheap centerpiece yourself that will look great. Floating candles shaped like flower blossoms in glass bowls can look great, just add some glass rocks to the bottom of the bowl in a color that matches your theme. You could also just use a simple bouquet of flowers as a centerpiece in colors that match your theme. Or, place several pillar candles on a pretty plate and fill the gaps in the plate with small clear Christmas ornaments with the hooks removed. The idea is that the clear ornaments will look like bubbles. You can vary this idea by using champagne bottles in place of the candles, or you can mix the two up.


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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Decorating for a New Year's Eve Party – Part One

Hosting a New Year's Eve party often includes decorating for the night. Decorating doesn't have to be a huge deal, there are several ways you can decorate easily and quickly without having to spend too much money.

First you should pick a theme to go with. Many New Year's Eve parties are adults only, in which case you may want to choose a different theme than if the party is going to be a neighborhood party including children. Fun hats and noisemakers are pretty much a must for either type of party, since kids and adults both get a kick out of these items.
However, especially if you are going to have a lot of kids at your party, you might not want to hand out the noise makers until a few minutes before midnight unless you don't mind all of the racket kids will make with them. Another option if there are going to be lots of children at your party is to recruit them to make the noisemakers as a craft. Have them fill coffee cans with uncooked rice or change. Then they can cover the coffee cans with construction paper with designs drawn on. Hats you should hand out right away. Masks can add a sophisticated air to your party.

Balloons are a cheap way to add some color to your decorating. You can always find balloons in colors that will match your theme. Silver balloons will look classier, colorful balloons will look good for a neighborhood party.

Check back tomorrow for part two of this blog.

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Friday, December 26, 2008

Mauna Kea Beach Hotel open

Aloha Hawaii visitors and friends,
We'd like to thank all of you who emailed us their 'Mele Kalikimaka' greetings just as our dear friend Bill had done or even mailed us snail mail cards. It's wonderful to know to have so many friends in Hawaii and around the world. Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas in Hawaii or wherever you celebrated the Christmas holidays.

Today, we'd like to share some top news for Hawaii, Big Island and Kohala Coast lovers. Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, the oldest and most prestigious Hawaii hotel, located on the Big Island's best beach, is finally back in business. The 43-old hotel, which was constructed by Laurance S. Rockefeller in 1965, gained reputation and attraction among celebrities and high-end clientele as one of the world's best hotels due to its premier location on picture perfect, crescent shaped white sand beach on Kaunaoa Bay. Well, Mr. Rockefeller knew why he built the first Big Island hotel right there.

Kaunaoa Bay, Mauna Kea Beach
When we reported on December 6th, 2006 that the hotel administration made the decision to close Mauna Kea Beach hotel for repairs and renovations after the earthquake, it was anticipated but yet unexpected news for Mauna Kea Beach Hotel visitors and hotel employees alike. Over the last two years, everybody who loves world famous Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, followed the process of the remodeling. I myself was most surprised about the decision to totally redo the famous Mauna Kea golf course. When you read more about the reasons for remodeling the golf course, it makes totally sense.

Mauna Kea Golf Course
Well, Mauna Kea's soft opening happened on Saturday 12/20/08. I was so happy to hear that 365 of the former employees got rehired, after working at other hotels and even different jobs. We can't wait to shake hands and welcome those friends back. Naturally, a celebration in Hawaii comes with music, hula, speeches and blessings. Blessings were done by Kahu Danny Akaka Jr. and the Rev. Dr. Henry K. Boshard. After an extensive $150 million renovation and redesign, Mauna Kea Beach hotel is beautiful has ever.

Mauna Kea Beach Hotel has a big 'ohana' of return guests, who have come as kids with their parents and do now the same with their children. Whether they will be still able to continue this wonderful Hawaii vacation tradition, depends on having the money it takes to spend a vacation at Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. With all the fancy upgrades on room amenities, room rates are going up too.

When asking for a hot deal rate quote for Keoki's birthday in March, the cheapest was Mountain view at $375/nt. on floors 5 - 8 and cheapest Oceanview Room at Beachfront Plumeria Beach Club on floors 1-4 was $625/nt. There was a Mountain View Package Deal for Room and Car for $450, which seems to be 'affordable' for Mauna Kea standards.

Well, don't let those rates 'impress' you too much. Rent a nice fully equipped Kohala Coast vacation rental with a short drive to Mauna Kea. Show up around 9am for your free Mauna Kea Beach pass at the gate entrance (number of beach passes is limited according to parking space!) and enjoy famous Mauna Kea beach just as all these VIP guests. Mauna Kea beach is public as any beach in Hawaii is. And the ocean and the ocean critters are available to anybody who wants to swim or snorkel in aquamarine, warm waters of the Pacific Ocean. Share your Mauna Kea beach visit with our blog visitors. Mahalo, Pua Hawaii Vacations
p.s.
For more information about Mauna Kea Beach hotel's soft opening, read West Hawaii Today article. See location of Mauna Kea Beach hotel on our Kohala Coast Map and Kohala Coast on our Big Island map.

Related Articles Mauna Kea Beach Hotel

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Last Minute Christmas Decorations – Part Two

Greeting cards are something that you already have on hand that can easily be used for decorating. You can even use cards from past holiday seasons if you don’t have enough for decorating from this season. Display them on your mantle among sprigs of greenery. Use a hole punch in the corner of each card and string them along a wall.

Gifts that are already wrapped make great decorations. Spend a little extra time wrapping your gifts nicely, and you can use them for decorating also. Make sure to use bows and ribbon if you want to go the extra mile. Place some gifts under the tree as usual, but display others around the house in different places too.


Stack a couple of gifts on an end table, or place a few along your mantle. Place a stack of gifts near your entry way or place a few above your kitchen cabinets.

If you like the idea of decorating with gifts, but don’t have enough around, you can always wrap a few empty boxes. If you want to diversify the theme a little more, you can wrap ribbon around your throw pillows and place a bow in the center to make your pillows look like gifts.

Place a few candy canes in a simple clear glass cup or a small vase. Tie small red ribbons around the necks of the candy canes and display them on your mantle or end table.

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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Last Minute Christmas Decorations – Part One

There isn’t very much time to finish decorating for Christmas. If you are hosting a Christmas get together at your house, you may want to do some speedy and cheap decorating. Never fear, there are several things you could do very quickly.

For Christmas dinner if you don’t have any Christmas plates or settings, you can use plain white plates. Use a red or white tablecloth, or use red or white place mats. Then, place one round glass ornament on each plate. This looks classier if you use just one color for all of the ornaments, and it looks more fun and happy if you use several colors. You can even use a variety of ornament types for a more sentimental look. If you want to get more elaborate, you can use small ornaments along with the large ornaments and even add seasonal greenery or colored tinsel.
Next, place a glass or silver pedestal cake stand in the center of the table and fill it with ornaments that match the ornaments you have on the plates.

If you want a more fancy centerpiece for your kitchen table, try placing cream or white colored pillar candles and tapered candles in a ceramic or metal bowl. Fill the spaces between them in the bottom half of the bowl with newspaper. On top of the newspaper place shiny ornaments in the bowl until it is overflowing with them. Silver ornaments and beads look really nice. Then, right when your guests sit down to dinner you can light the candles. Just make sure to blow them out when you’re done, since this display of candles might not be totally steady.
Check back soon for part two of this blog.

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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Mele Kalikimaka

Dear Best Hawaii Vacation blog visitors,
The 2008 Christmas is looking around the corner and we were wondering what we will do for Christmas at our blog. Well, the question was answered by receiving our annual year end reflections letter on life in Hawaii and life in general from one of our long time Big Island friends, Bill Jardine. Bill has been in real estate business in Hawaii for decades. He even shared his expansive knowledge in Hawaii real estate with our Hawaii blog visitors with two guest posts Hawaii Real Estate Market 2008 and Will falling Prices in Hawaii Real Estate attract new home buyers?

Bill is not only an excellent Hawaii realtor but we both sincerely admire his writing skills. So, here are Bill's Mele Kalikimaka greetings to us, to his friends and to all of you:

Mele KalikimakaMele Kalikimaka Christmas from Bill

"On the way into Kona this morning I was fighting waves of radio static by hip-hopping from station to station as heavy clouds drifted quietly toward the coast. The sea seemed to shimmer in the early light, as though it were waiting for a storm yet trying to enjoy the last of the sunlit eastern sky. It was one of those powerful scenes that we chance upon from time to time with our minds otherwise clouded with errands, regrets and hopes for the day ahead. This time I pushed the off-button on the radio, pulled over, rolled down the windows and let the cool morning air move through the cab of my old truck. Within seconds the cab filled with the sweet voice of Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, making the hair on my arms stand up. I guess I had pushed the wrong button and one of our Christmas cd’s came on! In that moment of disorientation I was struck by how incredibly lucky we are to have this blessed place be such an essential part of our lives.

...All the while the ocean stretches like a sleeping lover, perhaps feeling the deep sighs of the Humpback whales as they complete their long journey out of the arctic to roll and sing in the sapphire blue coastal waters shimmering under those gathering clouds. It is just fantastic to be here, to be healthy, and to be loved. This year Cathie, the kids and I are wishing you a part of all this. We want even the smallest gleam of the beauty of the Big Island to waken in your heart. We want even the slightest touch of Pele’s passionate fingers to light your cheeks and burn in your eyes. We hope the embrace of this Island paradise will refresh your soul and lead you to an embrace of your own, wherever you are.

There is just one thing that you cannot be forced to do, no matter how hard others may try to make you. You cannot be forced to love. That is because love is the essential element between you and your Creator, who loves you … just the way He made you. This Christmas we are wishing you love in every form, and may a joyful peace surround you and yours. Mele Kalikimaka, William N Jardine (R), Big Island Buyers Brokers"

We couldn't express our wishes to all of you better than this. Love and peace to all of you from Best Hawaii Vacations blog. Merry Christmas and Mele Kalikimaka, Pua and Keoki Hawaii Vacations

Happy Holidays in HawaiiRelated Christmas in Hawaii Articles

Have Fun in Hawaii at Christmas 2008
Christmas Vacation in Hawaii
Christmas on the Kohala Coast

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cheap Interisland Flights

Flight alert for all Hawaii travelers on interisland flights!

Amazing how flight prices can change around within a few months! In our July post about Big Island and Kauai we recommended to Hawaii travelers between the islands, either to stay away from extra interisland flights or even use the superferry if available for the island of your choice.

On our recent Hawaiian Island Hopping blog post from December 8th we told Hawaiian visitors:
"Here is the good news. Island hopping has become affordable again. Mokulele Airlines offers some decent flight rates and Hawaiian Airlines - their recent rates were beyond reasonable - just followed suit and lowered their interisland rates to $61 one-way between Honolulu and all major Hawaiian airports. New Interisland rates started 11/19/2008."

I assumed that's the best Hawaiian air lines can come up with for a while but as competition between the major airlines for Hawaiian Interisland flights, Hawaiian, IflyGo and Mokulele Airlines intensified, interisland fares came down another notch. If you book and interisland flight to Kona Big Island or Lihue Kauai by tomorrow, one-way fare is only $39 for travel through Dec. 31 and $48 through January 31. Check for individual restrictions with each air line.

Believe us Hawaii visitors and Hawaii residents alike cannot be happier about these cheap Interisland flights. Lowering the flight rates came at the perfect time - for the holiday season. It's the cheapest interisland flights we have seen in years. Hope it will stay that way to give our Hawaii Tourism industry another boost. Catch a flight to Kona now. Enjoy your interisland flight. Aloha, Pua Hawaii vacations

Decorate for the Holidays Inexpensively - Part Two

Tea light candles are extremely cheap. You can find them at dollar stores easily most of the time. Use tea light candles in clean glass jars. The jars can even be recycled jars that your food items came in, such as applesauce jars or mayonnaise jars. Tie a red, silver, green, or sparkly ribbon around the neck of the jar. Group a few of these candles together on end tables or a mantle for an easy, pretty decoration.

Try looking at thrift stores or discount stores for teddy bears or other holiday animals. Put them through the wash, and most of them will look brand new. When they're dry, tie colorful ribbons around their necks. Next, collect various sizes of boxes from shoebox size down. Wrap them in colorful wrapping paper and tie pretty bows around them. Display these present boxes with the teddy bears for an adorable decorating scheme. Try gluing a box under a bear's arm, or have a bear sitting on a present.

Hang a few ornaments or a few strands of tinsel from a chandelier. You can add a few pieces of greenery too, tied on with ribbon.

Use acrylic paint and some seasonally shaped sponges that you can find in a craft store to decorate your windows. Colors like white, red, green, gold, or silver look very festive. This can be a fun project that kids might like to participate in too.

Christmas tree ornaments can be used in places other than just your tree. Try picking out several ornaments that are the same color and putting them in a small decorative bowl on your mantle or on an end table.

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Monday, December 15, 2008

Hilo or Kona?

Aloha Hawaii travelers,
With Hawaiian island hopping being in the affordable range again, a visit to the Big Island's live volcano on your Hawaii vacation becomes of interest again. When we answer questions in Yahoo Answers Hawaii, we frequently come across the question where to stay on the Big Island. Here is what Big Island travelers should know about Hilo or Kona vacation.

Hilo or Kona, which location is the best for a Big Island vacation?

Yes, all the people who told you that Kona is on the dry side, West Coast of the Big Island, and Hilo is on the wetter, rainier East Coast, are definitely right. For this obvious reason Kona has more ocean front hotels and therefore is much more touristy than Hilo and Hilo area.. But isn't that what you have come for...sunny and dry weather in order to escape the rain from the Mainland!

What to expect at a Kona vacation?

You can expect extremely sunny and dry weather in Kona, even during the wetter winter season. Kona attracts thousands of visitors a year because of such outstanding events like the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon in October or the Bill Fish Tournament in August. If you don't like crowds, make sure to stay away from those events but most visitors plan attending those attractive events on their Kona vacation. Make sure to plan your Kona vacation early. Kona has white sands beaches but they are smaller than best Big Island's Hapuna and Mauna Kea beach north of Kona, on the Kohala Coast. Kealakekua Bay, south of Kona, guarantees best snorkeling and scuba diving on the Big Island. With plenty of hotels, restaurants and discos, we recommend a Kona vacation for younger people who also look for some night life on their Hawaii vacation.

Kona Vacation, Hawaii cruiseship in Kona
What to expect at a Hilo vacation?

Hilo weather is most of the times humid and warm and rainy. You will see quite a number of residents with umbrellas, either as a protection from the rain or the sun. Hilo area features some lovely beaches. However, be aware they are the black sands beaches, which is definitely one of the biggest differences to Kona with its white sand beaches. Favorite sights to visit when staying in Hilo are: Rainbow Waterfalls, Akaka Waterfalls (a few miles out of Hilo), Hilo Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden Hilo and Hilo Zoo. Don't miss the biggest Farmer's market of the Big Island Hilo Farmer's market with the freshest tropical fruits, tropical flowers and vegetables at very affordable prices plus Hawaiian gifts and crafts. Best days are Wednesday and Saturdays. A few stands are always open during the rest of the week.

Hilo vacation, Hilo public golf course
Here are a few recommendation. Unless you really love the tropical rain forest and prefer black sand beach - there are no white sand beaches on the East coast - which are typical features of Hilo and area, decide for a West coast vacation!
1.
No need to stay in touristy Kona, which can be at times quite 'voggy' (looks like fog but are fumes from our active volcano). Stay north of Kona, on the sunny Kohala Coast. Admittedly, the Kohala Coast resorts are quite expensive but there are quite a number of vacation rentals close to the best white sand beaches, Hapuna and Mauna Kea Beach!
2.
The Kohala Coast has great snorkel spots in Puako. If you want to explore Kealakekua Bay, our best Big Island snorkel area, it's a short 30min drive to Honokahau Harbor where all the Kona snorkel ships take off.
3.
When staying on the Kohala Coast, you can do a day trip to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Take the route via Waimea and Hilo (or even stay 2 nights in Hilo area), which is longer but straighter than the very curvy Kona one and passes all the best Big Island sights like Waipio Valley.
4.
After your long adventurous day to the Park, stay a night or two in Volcano. There are wonderful Volcano places near Hawaii Volcanoes National Park with jacuzzi where you can rest and recuperate from a day of Big Island adventure.
5.
Enjoy the movie at the Visitor's Center, the Thurston Lava Tubes and of course, the fireworks of Madame Pele...hot lava flowing into the ocean and shooting up into the skies. Wow!

After all those exciting adventures, you will be happy when you are back lying on the warm sunny Hapuna beach. Have a wonderful Big Island vacation in Kona, Hilo and the Kohala Coast. Aloha, Pua Hawaii Vacation Kona and Hawaii Vacation Hilo

Decorate for the Holidays Inexpensively - Part One

Many people do not have a lot in their budget for holiday decorating this year. But, you would be surprised how many nice decorations you can create very inexpensively. You may not end up needing to buy any full priced decorations.

Before you buy any decorations or any materials for the following ideas, or spend any time making any of these decorations, take the time to plan out your decorating theme. This can save you time and money that you might spend experimenting, so it makes sense to plan. Some people like to decorate with a more classy looking theme, consisting of a lot of white, clear, silver and shimmery decorations. Some people may find this boring and opt to decorate using more vibrant colors in a toy land theme for example. Some people like to go with a more subtle cabin or ski lodge decoration scheme that will look warm and cozy.

Use what you can for free from your back yard. Trim small branches from pine trees and gather pine cones and holly. These can all be used to make a centerpiece, or to decorate a mantle. Pine cones can be spray painted with gold, silver, or sparkley paint.
Pine tree branches can be used as an accent to almost any decoration, and they smell nice too, so be liberal when you are gathering them. If you have bird houses in your back yard that are going to waste during the cold months, bring them inside. Wash them off, and tie ribbons around them. Add a couple small pine branches, and you have a beautiful hanging decoration.

Check back soon for part two of this blog.

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Quickly Ready your Home for Guests

Getting your home ready for guests can turn into a big ordeal. Here are a few bare essentials you can take care of quickly that will make your home look plenty ready for guests during the holidays.

First, go outside and look at what your guests will see as they walk to your front door. If there are any ice patches to spread salt on or snow to be shoveled take care of that first. Maybe the front house light is burned out and in need of replacement. Set a couple of planters out front with Christmas plants in them such as poinsettias. Big red bows around your porch railing can look very festive and are quick and easy to tie.

Now, open the front door and check out the view. Often we have our favorite jackets, snow hats, and mittens hung over railings or on the counter tops. Gather these things up and put them away for now. You can easily get them all out again as soon as your company is gone.

Clear out a few coats from the coat closet so guests can hang their coats in it. Make room on the floor of your coat closet for guests to keep their shoes. This is especially handy if you have a dog who eats guests' shoes like I do.

Make sure there are plenty of chairs available for guests to sit in. Make sure your couches don't have excessive pillows decorating them that don't leave enough room for sitting.

Don't sweat the details on cleaning. Just wipe down visible surfaces and inside sinks. Make sure there is toilet paper, and clean the toilet if it looks dirty. Fluff the guest pillows and vacuum and sweep if you can see the floors are dirty.

Light candles and a fire if you have a fireplace as a final touch.
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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Shop Away!

So I finally feel like I've made some progress! We've added a bunch of Sale items to the website. Sales and deals at every turn! These Christmas blocks are new and have been very well received. After all the success of the Gratitude and Believe sets we decided to put a holiday spin on the same design.



Floral?! Yes we have florals and this one is a serious steal!
Only a couple of these left. I think we all need the reminder and some daily inspiration in our homes!




We still have a large selection and at seriously good prices! We've got seasonal holiday decorating items and gift ideas to add meaning to the season and comfort to our homes.
Shop now at :

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Serious Bargains!

Ok people....do you love a good deal as much as I do? Well in the works is our end of the year liquidation (or in other words "time to clean house")! Coming your way are some serious steals by anyones standards. The only hitch is, like I said is it is in the works. Much has to be done on our end, for you to save the big bucks in the way of pictures and updating everything online. Still..... believe me when I say it is worth checking in regularly because everything is while supplies last and you really have to jump on it! We bargain hunters know the rules..... Don't hesitate to contact us for any reason! Let the shopping begin!

Clothes Pin Ornaments

Old fashioned wooden clothes pins can make quite cute Santa ornaments. Make sure to get the kind pictured below, the kind with the hinges might work, but not quite as well. You’ll need red and white felt, red pipe cleaners, red, black, yellow, and peach paint, acrylic is probably the cheapest and easiest, and glue.

The clothes pins have what looks like legs already, and small torsos, so without even getting started you can imagine how the Santa will look. First glue a one to two inch piece of clothes hanger on each side of the clothes pin. If you have a drill, you can simply drill through the clothes pin and string one longer piece of pipe cleaner through for his arms.

Next, paint everything but the top part, which will be the head, red. After the paint has dried use black paint to paint the bottom sections of his legs black, like boots. Use the black paint to draw a line where his coat would be covering his pants. Draw a black belt around his waist, and draw on two small dots for his eyes. Use the yellow paint to draw a square buckle on his belt. Use the peach to make his cheeks look rosy.

Cut a small rectangle of red felt and roll it into a cone to be used as the Santa hat, then glue it in place. Glue on a bit of white felt for his beard, and use a little more white felt for trim on santa’s hat.

Using a bit of red thread and a needle, sew a loop onto the Santa hat. This will be your ornament hanger.

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Monday, December 8, 2008

Make your own picture frame ornament

There are many types of Christmas tree ornaments that you can make fairly easily and you won’t have to spend a lot of money on materials. These can be fun if you are the crafty type, and they are especially fun for kids to make. Some are as simple as baking cookies and hanging them from ribbons, but others need a bit more explanation.

Use a juice can lid to make a pretty picture frame ornament. Cut a round picture out to use in your ornament. You can choose a picture of a family member or a picture of something that makes you feel the holiday cheer, like an angel, santa, or reindeer. Glue the picture to the top of the lid. Now, you’ll need a piece of decorative cording to glue around the edge of your picture. Glue a piece of ribbon that is six to ten inches long or so to the back of the can. Glue the ribbon so it has a few inches on each side of the place where you glued it. Tie the ends together in a bow, this is how you’ll hang the ornament. Next, glue a piece of lace around the edge of the lid on the back. Your ornament should be ready to hang as soon as the glue dries.

You can be a little creative with these instructions if you prefer, instead of using cording around the picture, maybe you’d rather use a thin ribbon. Or, Use a wide sheer ribbon around the ornament instead of lace. Have fun!

Check back soon for directions on how to make a poinsettia ornament.

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Hawaiian Island Hopping

Aloha everybody,
As you might remember, from time to time we answer questions about travel to Hawaii on Yahoo answers, especially when we feel a Hawaii traveler is looking desperately for knowledgeable assistance and not just the blabla answers which often happen in online forums. So our most recent participation was about somebody's question about island Hawaii hopping.

The answers how to do island hopping when on Hawaii vacation were basically the following: 1. island hopping in Hawaii is only feasible through becoming a Hawaiian Airline employee, 2. booking a Hawaiian cruise or 3. just don't do island hopping and stay on Kauai for your vacation.

We did not want to leave this person or other Hawaii travelers in a lurch, especially since many visitors to the Hawaiian Islands consider 'hopping' to the Big Island for a visit to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park to watch a live volcano. Here is what we recommended for Hawaiian island hopping:

"Here is the good news. Island hopping has become affordable again. Mokulele Airlines offers some decent flight rates and Hawaiian Airlines - their recent rates were beyond reasonable - just followed suit and lowered their interisland rates to $61 one-way between Honolulu and all major Hawaiian airports. New Interisland rates started 11/19/2008.

However, don't now get carried away and try to island 'hop' 3 or 4 islands. I always recommend to start with two and visit the other two on your next vacation. After that, you will have fallen in love with one of the islands and return to that one on future Hawaii visits.

As a lot of flight specials are currently offered for flying from the Mainland to Honolulu, why not take advantage of those special deals and stay for 3 - 4 days in Honolulu. Visit famous Waikiki Beach, Diamond Head, Hamauma Bay Beach, Pearl Harbor and watch surfers tackling the crazy winter surf on north Shore. You might even be able to get around without having to rent a car, as Honolulu has a very well developed public bus transportation service at an affordable price.

Sunset at Mauna Kea Beach. Kohala Coast, Hawaii Bog Island
Then take off to the Big Island for a 4-day visit. Stay north of Kona on the sunny Kohala Coast where the best white sand beaches, Hapuna and Mauna Kea beach are. Relax and enjoy. Then take time for adventure. Plan carefully so it does not become a chore: Mauna Kea summit stargazing, visit to Waipio Valley on your way to Volcano, stop at Akaka Waterfalls, get a glimpse of Hilo and make it to your final destination, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Ever since January 2008, our live volcano Kilauea has been more active than ever and Big Island visitors cannot get enough of the spectacle. Bring video camera, camera and appropriate clothing - for Park at over 3000ft elevation warm clothing, for sea level firm shoes and lighter clothing - and don't forget lots of water and sunscreen.

How does that sound for your Hawaii island hopping plans? Hope this sounds like a good idea to you. Have fun in Hawaii. Aloha, Pua Hawaii Vacations
p.s.
Last but not least, Volcano vacation rental owners offer you great discounts when visiting Hawaii Volcanoes National Park beginning December, before the high season starts.

Hawaiian Island Hopping Related Articles

Friday, December 5, 2008

Make your own poinsettia ornament

A lovely poinsettia ornament is easy to make, and what captures the holiday spirit better than a poinsettia?

You’ll need to cut a circle out of cardboard to start with. Your circle can be as big as you want the ornament to be, usually 3-4 inches across. Use the mouth of a large cup to trace around the cardboard for your cutout. Now, you’ll need a small amount of red, green and white felt. Cut two pieces of green felt out that are slightly bigger than your piece of cardboard. You’ll want to make sure that about a fourth of an inch of green felt is overhanging the cardboard cutout on all sides. Glue one circle of green felt to each side of the cardboard. Now, using a needle and some thick red thread or thin red string, sew the sides of the felt together using stitches that are about an eighth of an inch apart. When you’re done, use the thick red thread to sew a large loop of thread through for your ornament hanger, tie it together. Next, you will need to cut out diamond shapes from the red felt. Each diamond shape should be a little less wide than half of your ornament so far. Arrange the diamonds like petals of the poinsettia, gluing each one on. You’ll want them layered to look more real. The top layer looks best if it is just four diamonds. Where the diamonds come together, glue three small circles of white felt, each only about 3/8 of an inch in diameter.

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Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas Decoration Crafts - Part Four

Put the mixture you created (see previous blog) into a paper bag along with the orange and roll the orange around inside until it is totally coated in the spices. Leave the orange in the bag in a cool dry place for about a month. Each day roll the orange in the spices again.

The orange may finish curing in as few as three weeks if you live in a very dry climate, and if you live somewhere more humid it may take up to six months. You’ll know your pomander is done when you tap it and hear a hollow sound and the orange feels light in weight. When the pomander reaches this point you’ll want to shake off any extra spices before displaying it in your home.

I find that because you need to remember to roll the orange in the mixture at least every few days for a month or more, it makes sense to make more than one of these at a time, especially since they last for years. You could even make a whole batch and give them away as holiday gifts.

Pomanders look good displayed in pairs in a decorative bowl or on a decorative plate on a bed of cloves or potpourri. If you feel like getting creative, insert the cloves into your pomander in a pattern or add ribbon to your finished product.

If your pomander starts to lose its scent you can simply mix up a batch of spice mixture and re roll the orange in the mixture.

Check back soon for the next part of this blog.

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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Christmas Decoration Crafts - Part Three

Pomanders have long been used to scent homes pleasantly. Carry on this tradition by creating a few of your own. Another plus is that they can be hung with ribbon or a few can be displayed in a bowl for a pleasant holiday decorations. Another great thing about pomanders is that when made correctly, they can last for years. Pomanders are usually made using a citrus fruit, most commonly oranges, although sometimes lemons or apples. I think oranges look the best and stand up to the test of time the best.

You’ll need to poke holes in the orange where you will be pushing the cloves into the rind. A toothpick or knitting needle can be used to do this. You may want to use a thimble to do this to protect your pushing finger. You can also cover your fingers with masking tape to protect them. How far apart you space the cloves is up to you, but don’t space them further than ¼ inch apart. The closer together you place the cloves the more scented the final product will be. But, you do want to leave a little space between each clove because as your orange shrinks the cloves will be pulled closer together. Next, fill each hole with a clove. When you’ve got the whole orange studded with cloves, you’re ready to roll your pomander in a special mixture to preserve it and make it more scented.

This mixture you’ll roll your pomander in consists of several drops of sandlewood and one tablespoon of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground cloves. Sandlewood is a natural preservative, so make sure not to leave it out of your mixture.

Check back soon for the next part of this blog.

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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmas Decoration Crafts - Part Two

Wreaths are commonly used for Christmas decorations. They are usually quick to make, and there is a large variety of types to choose from, many more than I’ll list here.


I think the cutest one is a wreath made with dog bones. You can hang it over your dog’s bed inside and when the season is over, you can give most of it to your dog to eat. Start with a Styrofoam or cardboard shape. Secure a piece of ribbon to it, and then wind it around the circle on a slight diagonal, like stripes on a candy cane. Make sure the ribbon totally covers the cardboard or Styrofoam. Next, you’ll tie the dog bones onto the wreath using more ribbon. Get creative with the types of dog bones you use if you want a more colorful end product. Rubber dog bones come in bright colors, it looks cute to use red and green rubber dog bones. If you want to add more to this wreath tie evergreen sprigs around it also.

This next wreath is very elegant and pretty, it looks almost like light snow gathered into a wreath. You’ll need to form a wire clothes hanger into a circle using some wire cutters and needle nose pliers. Next, you’ll need to tie plastic sandwich bags around the wire using a simple knot. Tie them around until you’ve filled the circle. Add a shimmery bow around the finished wreath.

Check back soon for the next part of this blog.

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Monday, December 1, 2008

Christmas Decoration Crafts - Part One

Now that Thanksgiving has passed it is time to take down your fall decorations and start putting up your Christmas decorations. I’m going to focus on decorations that you can make yourself for a cheap price.

One of the easiest and cheapest decorations is painting bricks to use as bookends or to display on tables throughout the home. This is a fun decoration for kids to do too. All you need are a few bricks, paint, and paintbrushes. Look online for inspiration and ideas of what to paint. Paint a snowman, Santa Clause, or a reindeer on the front of your brick.


Wrap your design around the sides of the brick too if they will be seen where you choose to display them. If you are not very good at painting, you could just paint alternating red and white stripes on a brick, or green with red polka dots, any pattern really. If you want to get more detailed, use some felt or other material to glue onto the brick as clothing for whatever character you painted. It is a good idea to glue felt on the bottom of the bricks so they don’t scratch up the furniture you choose to place them on. These cute bricks can be displayed anywhere by themselves, or in groups. They make wonderful door stops, table decorations, or mantle decorations.

Check back soon for the next part of this blog.

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