When a baby turns one in Hawaii...


The first birthday celebrations are an important tradition in Korea but also in Hawaiian culture. We celebrated Ka'iwa's first birthday with a traditional Hawaiian luau. He is one sixteenth Hawaiian.
This adorable family is about the partake on a luau feast they prepared with love in a three day span.

My tiny mermaid the big sister.
Day 1:  Dad dug and prepared an Imu, a lava rock roasting pit and began to heat the rocks.
Day 2: Imu was lined with sand, banana pulp, banana leaves. The pork wrapped with layers of tea leaves was placed inside. Imu was then closed with layers of banana pulp, leaves and sand and is left to cook overnight.
Day 3: Lau Laus were prepared for steaming. Lau Laus are made with taro and tea leaves, wrapped and tied the old way. Inside each lau lau is some meat,
fish and garlic. This was my frist time making lau laus. So beautiful!
Finally the Imu is opened and the roasted food is unearthed.
Also on the table were Lomi lomi salmon,
baked breadfruit, poi, rice, kimchi and so much more, ending with lemon pies made by the other grand mother.

Day 4: Huge beach barbecue party for all.



Bivalves...

from three seas: The South Pacific, the Atlantic and the Caribbean.

It's more on the subject of "Why I collect" from previous post on August 30, 5 posts back.

On the vines...


Tiny fruit on the vines at the park. Sweet summer comes to an end when these begin to appear on the vines.
First freeze is expected tonight and I am not prepared.

But I will be...

See the last post for view the vines.

September rain...

So much rain in September... record, maybe. New Mexico is looking more like Hawaii now.
Spectacular lighning and thunder, arroyos with water! Coyotes and bears out roaming the neighborhood.
Giant puffy clouds. Such drama in the high desert.
Chilly and darker mornings, and I am looking forward to going to Hawaii late October.
Time for new provisions both emotional and sartorial.

Pine tree just outside my door and the vine at the park, entangled with silver lace. 

California beauties...

My niece got married a couple of weeks ago in California wine country. This fact alone is a amazing as she is the daughter of my little brother.
Having just arrived from the high desert the Golden State flowers appear new and overwhelming.
The ginkgo leaves are one of the shapes and colors of my childhood fall. The streets of Seoul would be covered with yellow ginkyo leaves.
These two leaves triggered sweet nostalia as I hadn't seen them in a long time.


Why do I collect?

Because collecting is a form of meditative contemplation.
Foraging is my favorite passtime.
Archiving/documenting what I collect is my obsession and joy.
Sharing them through photography is a fairly new passion. I am a curator by nature. 
I enjoy editing and picking through things that I consider priceless treasures. 
My collections have no intrinsic value. Many of my photos here reflect just that. I am an archivist.
I have to be mindful that these things don't take over my life or my house!!!

You can find me in Instagram under "omjsk" for more of these.

Arroyos transformed...

After much awaited late monsoons.
Not only for the happy cactus groves but the landscape changed so much that 
levels of dips and valleys are almost unrecognizable. 
What once was three feet deep is level with hills around, filled up with soft warm sand.  
Oh, the power of rain!

At the park...

Sitting on the bench, playing with flowers...watching the summer go by.
Pondering on the goals I had set for the year.
Time to reassess, rethink, regroup and move on with more clarity


Spectacular home...

New Mexico, you are more than a beauty! You are now part of me, my home 
and my very being to the bones. I amused myself as an outsider, anything but
New Mexican all those years since 1998 when I arrived here to stay for a couple years...
always in the state of potential departure, just a sojourner ready to go home.
I want to get to know this magnificent land of enchantment.

At Abiquiu lake to gazing at the Pedernal peak on the way to Ghost ranch recently.

Vines and raindrops...

Surprise rain the other day, and again tonight. Never enough but raindrops 
never sounded or smelled more beautiful. 
Heavenly music to us desert souls with ocean mind.
Moving into July with alacrity!


Ocean longings...

This ongoing three year drought and too many wildfires have
created a deep longing in my heart for the ocean. More so then ever.
It was heaven to be in the ocean with my sister last weekend in California...
with sand between our toes!
Just to smell the sea, be in it, gaze at it even for a day! 
And to have the time to chat and collect little treasures from the Sea together.

My little love is contemplating an evening dip but first she must gaze out and be one with her ocean.

Moving deep into summer...

with this incomparable beauty.
Clematis from the backside, the stronger side, more interesting side, more beautiful side.
See how it's designed to support the frontside, the side that is so full of vanity
with only bees on their mind. The backside? Its their backbone, its their true abode.

Learning from the invisible.

His things that I have...

I have a few personal things and books that belonged to my father.
Sometimes, I flip through his books especially the well worn ones... 
Korean/English dictionary, the bible in Korean and many classical literature.
He was a good student to the very last. Always curious, expanding his English vocabulary, reading history.
I find I do so many things exactly the way he did. 
We are so alike. I wish he had lived a bit longer... yet I feel his presence all around me.
Happy Fathers day, Appa!! 

Korean Bible, calligraphy ink stone, water well, and the pearls he gave me.