Introducing Cedro Espino

All the time she was waiting to come to Hawaii, Jientje talked about how much she wanted to photograph Foster Garden.   Last Wednesday we arrived in the parking lot and immediately Jientje was charmed by the berries on a tree, a bird on a nearby branch, and Cedro Espino.

What truly amazes me about meeting Cedro is that I have been to Foster Garden many, many times and I have never explored off the path from my car to the front gate.  With Jientje that is all we did explore.  We never went inside the garden proper.  Long before we got to the entrance, Jientje was thirsty and tired.  I told her there was a drinking fountain and benches just inside, but she wanted Perrier and air conditioning, so we left and never did make it back.

Still, I have been to Foster Garden many times so I was not disappointed for myself.  In fact, I was quite content because if it wasn’t for Jientje’s whims and sudden changes of direction, I might never have noticed Cedro standing all alone at the edge of the parking lot.

Here he is.  Cedro looks quite charming, no? See him flirting with Jientje?

Cedro Espino

Actually, he is rather a prickly sort of fellow. It isn’t wise to get too close.


In fact, while talking with the grounds keeper, we learned that not even the most devout tree huggers fancy Cedro. I thought that very sad, but I must say I do understand why.

up close

Foster Botanical Gardens, Honolulu, Hawaii

Hawaii Without A View

Karen at Kcinnova’s World asked us to share the views from the windows of our homes.   My home is on Oahu in Hawaii.  I can hear you all oooh-ing and sighing, but Hawaii or not, I live in a city — a flipping BIG city with over 900,000 people in it.  Plus, this is a small island so those people have nowhere else to go; plus, plus, the total population of this small island is right around 1.2 million people.

For the purposes of description, there are some things you need to know about island living — this island is neither round nor rectangular.  The volcano was not neat and linear when it laid out the land and set up the mountains.  There is no such thing as due North, due South, Due East or Due West on this (or most likely any other) island.  Here we use destinations as direction.  From my house Ewa (city) is west-ish and Koko Head is east-ish.  For North-ish we say mauka, which means toward the mountains, and for south-ish we say makai, which means toward the water.

So, the views from my windows — sure to disappoint:

Starting at the Koko Head-makai corner of our little square house we have the kitchen door (leads to the carport).
kitchen door

Facing Makai, the dining room windows:
dining room

Also facing makai, the front door (leads to the front yard):
front door

Still facing makai, the living room: ling room 1

Facing Ewa, the living room: living room 2

Now, kitty-corner from the kitchen door, the Ewa-makai door (off Amoeba’s office and into the back yard):
Ewa door

The mauka facing window above Amoeba’s desk:
office view

The mauka view from the spare bedroom where Jientje will be staying soon:
spare room

The mauka view from the mater bedroom:
M bedroom

The Koko Head view from the master bedroom (into the carport):
M bedroom 2

I told you our windows are boring! We have a 12 foot Mock Orange hedge surrounding most of our house. We also have neighbors all the way around.

You may notice that save for the dining room we have no curtains.  That was choice.  We have white walls and windows every few feet.  Our house is bright and airy and I often feel as though I am living outside, but with all the benefits of inside.   The views might not be great, but we really do like this little house.   Maybe someday I’ll show you the inside.

Orchid Delight

Ruby Orchid

Red Vein Orchid

Pink Throat Orchid

I took these photos in the Orchid House at Foster Botanical Garden. Most of the orchids were not labeled and so I do not know the names of these lovely beauties. Amoeba could tell us the types — if he wasn’t busy struggling with yet another critical report deadline — but there are so many Orchid hybrids that looking up the names would be incredibly time consuming. So, if you think you know one of these, please share the name with us!

And hey, as long as you’re here — what is your favorite flower? Despite all the photos I take of orchids, my favorite flowers are Daisies. I never met a Daisy I didn’t like.

The Weekend


In the morning, Thom came by with his new camera.  He said he wanted my help, but really, he didn’t.  I showed him the button to turn his flash on and off, and I showed him how to make his macro setting work.  I also showed him where to find the index in his camera manual. [rolls eyes]  Mostly he just showed off his camera.


Thom taking a photograph of me taking a photograph of him.

After Thom left, I made toasted cheese sandwiches for lunch and got ready to go to the Island Wide Handbell Choir Workshop. I was at the workshop from 12:30 to 4:30 and while I was there I learned how to be an even better ding-a-ling.

After the Handbell Workshop, I made a dash to Safeway for yummies, then I went by Amoeba’s office and collected him, and we went to Kuli’ou’ou Beach Park to join Thom and company at their pretty-darn-regular weekend picnic. We had a lovely time talking and eating and laughing. I am pretty certain Thom has some hilarious photos to share.

These photos are of the park, but I actually took them Friday evening when Amoeba and I walked down to the beach and enjoyed the sunset.

Night Flight

Maunalua Bay Sunset

This photo was taken not too long after the sun began to set. The birds are egrets flying in to find their night roosts.

Sunset Over Paiko Lagoon

Sunet Over Paiko Lagoon

This was among the last photos of the evening, as the sun swiftly sank into the sea.  Paiko Lagoon is part of the bird sanctuary adjacent to Maunalua Bay & Kuli’ou’ou Beach Park.

After dark we enjoyed the gentle ocean breeze and a lively group of ukulele players who exhausted every Hawaiian tune ever written and then regaled the park with Christmas carols.   We especially enjoyed the Elvis impersonator.  No pics of them though, the shade they were in hid them from the camera.


Tomorrow morning we have to be to church by 9:00 a.m. because of my Sunday School class.  At 10:00 a.m. I have bell choir rehearsal (yes, more) and at 10:30 the worship service begins.  The beginner’s handbell choir (that’s my group) is playing the prelude.  After church, Amoeba has choir practice.

After choir practice we are going to Gigi’s to meet several other local bloggers and have a lovely lunch.  I think it is very generous of Gigi to plan and host this gathering.  We are very much looking forward to the afternoon.

After Gigi’s party we have to return to church because I am speaking at the 5:00 p.m. service.  If you return to this blog at 5:00 p.m. HST, I have set the message to auto-post, so you can read what I am sharing with the congregation.  (Dr. John, I do believe it is God’s message.  It certainly isn’t what I thought I was planning to write about — this is just what emerged from my keyboard after all the study and prayer — and you probably know even better than I that even though I very carefully wrote this out word-for-word, it may not be exactly what emerges from my mouth tomorrow.)

Finally, after church we will come home and put up Punny Monday — which isn’t half as hard as it’s been the last two times — and then I can have a nice long nap!

So now you all know why you’ve not seem much of me today, and won’t see much of me on Sunday!

Weekend Reflections

James at Newtown Area Photo has a meme called Weekend Reflections. Many of you are playing, and I decided to join you.  Even if you aren’t playing, be sure to visit James.  He takes incredible photos.

Gazing Ball

I took this photo at Foster Botanical Garden. This feature is very close to the entrance of the garden. Behind me you can see the rest area building and patio, which is kind of sad because it blocks the view to the Lyon Orchid Garden.  FBG is a 13.5 acre garden in the heart of Honolulu.  With the freeway on one side and a very busy major boulevard on the other, it is an oasis of peace surrounded by concrete towers and everyday busy-ness.


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