- Local Hawaiian Banana Bread, My Grandma's Recipe
Since I was little, I have fond memories of my mom and dad making banana bread during every holiday season. My parents would tag team the process with my dad mashing the bananas and flouring all the pans and my mom mixing all the ingredients together. They would bake batches and batches of this delicious recipe and give to friends and family members as part of their holiday gifts. This special banana bread was a treat that I would wait for all year. This recipe has a deep amount of sweetness, moistness, and flavor brought out by the banana and the unique ingredient of crushed pineapple. It wasn't until later that I realized that this recipe was actually given to my mom by my grandmother, who also used to make this recipe for her family and friends. Please enjoy this recipe passed down from my grandmother. Also, you can follow along with this video: Grandma's Big Island Banana Bread Recipe Equipment used to film this video: (Amazon Affiliate Links) Camera: https://amzn.to/3csp7aW Mic: https://amzn.to/3g2WHqd Iphone Mount: https://amzn.to/3pFJCGt Short Tripod: https://amzn.to/3xaItsY Iphone Telepod: https://amzn.to/359IilS Banana Bread/Muffin Ingredients 3 eggs 2 C. sugar (I only use 1 1/2 C.) 1 C. Oil 2 C. bananas (5-6 mashed bananas) 3 C. sifted flour 1 tsp vanilla 1 tsp salt 1 tsp cinnamon 2 tsp baking soda 1 8 oz can crushed pineapple Beat eggs until foamy. Add wet ingredients: Oil, sugar, bananas, crushed pineapple, vanilla, and stir. Then add all the dry ingredients: Flour, salt, cinnamon, and baking soda Butter and flour bread or muffin pans: Pour into bread loaf pans or muffin pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour (if put into bread pans) and/or 20-25 min if you are making muffins. Cool for 10 min before removing from the pan. And enjoy! For day to day updates, please follow me on instagram ***Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if anyone purchases through them. This helps support my channel so I can continue to create more blogs for Hawaii Food and Family!
- BABYMOON AT 33 WEEKS PREGNANT, SUMMER TRAVEL TO PORTLAND, OREGON
At the end of May 2022, Reid and I decided to take one last trip together to Oregon before baby arrives. WHY OREGON? Since we are both from Hawaii, we wanted a change of scenery, weather, and I didn't want to travel too far at this time because I was already in my third trimester of pregnancy. Also, I went to the University of Portland for college many years ago and was excited to share some of my experiences and favorite places with Reid. SUGGESTIONS FOR PREGNANT TRAVELERS WHEN FLYING: Wear comfortable clothes on the airplane. If you can purchase EXTRA COMFORT seats... or even FIRST CLASS for your flight, do it! (Reid purchased extra comfort seats for us both ways, and I am very thankful that he did! The extra space was much needed for my pregnant body...) Bring an extra small pillow for your back and blanket. I used an extra blanket to place under my feet. Most airlines don't provide any extra blankets or pillows anymore... or you have to purchase them. Wear compression socks throughout the whole flight and try to prop up your feet throughout the flight (as best as you can). Here are the ones I wore and really LOVED! Physix Gear Compression Socks: https://amzn.to/3lM5Aqf Get up every hour on the airplane and stretch your legs. Stay hydrated throughout the flight. MATERNITY CLOTHES THAT I BROUGHT WITH ME: Liu and Qu Womens Maternity Tops Signature by Love Strauss and Co Jeans Physix Gear Compression Socks WHERE WE STAYED: Reid and I stayed at the Embassy Suites by the Portland Airport. We enjoyed the free breakfast and free parking! We arrived at the hotel on a Friday night and was able to take the free shuttle to the hotel that evening. Reid decided to rent a car from the next day (which saved us money!) and on that morning, we took the free shuttle back to the airport to pick up our car. We also saved money at the end of our trip as well by returning our car the night before we were flying home! We enjoyed our experience at this hotel and would recommend it to those spending time in Portland! SOME OF OUR FAVORITE PLACES THAT WE VISITED: Portland Japanese Garden: The Portland Japanese Garden is conveniently located in the hills of Portland right above the International Rose Test Garden. Admission for adults is $18.95 so if you do go, make sure you are able to take your time to enjoy the sights and scenery. The overall landscape is quite beautiful and there are so many picturesque photo opportunities. Honestly, I wished I dressed a little nicer on this day for that reason... Also, the Umami Cafe available for patrons which serves green tea and Japanese sweets. We did not make reservations ahead of time and when we went to ask for a table, we were told that there was a two hour wait. Next time I would make sure to reserve a table in advance, which can be done online. At 32/33 weeks pregnant, I had to take extra precautions while walking around the garden. The paths are paved but there was also some points where the walkway was uneven, uphill, or at a decline, so make sure to wear shoes. It also rained a little so I made sure to walk slow to avoid slipping or falling. Overall, this is a beautiful garden that brought me back to past trips to Japan... a place a can't wait to return to. 2. PORTLAND SATURDAY MARKET: The Portland Saturday Market brings back so many fond memories of my days in college with friends and family... rummaging through so many unique, eclectic, and colorful booths. This was my first time back in over 10 years and it was nice to return. The overall market felt smaller than before, which I am assuming are due to effects of the pandemic and the riots that took place over the last two years. However, it was still nice to see so many small businesses and creative artists sharing and selling their work. Reid thoroughly enjoyed the beer stand that was available from (Migration Brewing: https://migrationbrewing.com) and I enjoyed a very nostalgic elephant ear (similar to a churro or malasada) which was delicious. We also purchased a beautiful photo of the waterfront area covered in cherry blossom trees that will remind us of our baby moon trip to Portland! Here's more information about the Portland Saturday Market if you are in the area! https://www.portlandsaturdaymarket.com/ 3. LATOURELL FALLS/GETTING TO MULTNOMAH FALLS Reid and I really enjoyed the drive to Multnomah Falls which is about a 40 minute drive east of Portland. This is a beautiful and scenic drive into the mountains and during the summer months, the luscious Douglas fir trees and oak trees are the main landscape view. On our way to Multnomah Falls, we stopped at The Vista House. The Vista House was built in 1918 as a rest stop for travelers traveling down the Columbia River Valley. This stop has a quaint coffee stand and clean bathrooms (which is important... especially when pregnant!). We also got to read about the history of the Vista House and learn a little bit more about the valley. After stopping there, we made a stop at Latourell Falls which is a small waterfall on the way to Multnomah Falls. After a short 5 minute walk uphill, a beautiful and picturesque waterfall appears. This is a great photo spot as well! After getting back on the road, we drove another 15 minutes or so... very excited to see Multnomah Falls. We started to see signs about needing a permit to continue forward. At some point, we reached a park ranger who mentioned that in order for us to have kept going on the road that we were driving on, we needed to have applied for a permit to see Multnomah Falls. The permit itself is $2 but on the day that we went, they were booked until 4 PM! They only allow 70 cars in per hour because traffic in the area has been too high. Disappointed, we turned around and unfortunately did not get to see Multnomah Falls on this trip. We will definitely make it a point to return. 4. TILLAMOOK CREAMERY About an hour and a half west of Portland is Tillamook Creamery. I would definitely recommend coming here if planning on taking a drive to the Oregon Coast. Tillamook Creamery is an educational and enjoyable spot to learn about how the company creates their cheese and they have a full food menu and ice cream bar available! Reid and I generally like to purchase Tillamook cheeses and ice cream so visiting the creamery gave both of us a better appreciation for the amount of time and resources that go into creating the cheese we eat! After taking a self-guided tour of a step by step process on how they make their cheese and eating a free sample of cheddar cheese, Reid and I snacked on some orange and vanilla ice cream and fried cheese curds. It was a lot of dairy all at once, which for those who are lactose, it can be a lot. (Make sure to bring your lactaid!). But it was DELICIOUS! 5. DRIVING THE OREGON COAST/CANNON BEACH A famous beach that many tourists and natives flock to every year is Cannon Beach, located about 80 miles northwest of Portland. It's a beautiful beach with a stunning coastline and a front seat view of the famous Haystack Rock (featured in many films, which include The Goonies, Twilight, Point Break, and Free Willy). We didn't spend much time in this town, but we enjoyed the scenic elements and the ocean breeze. 6. BROADWAY IN PORTLAND/PERFORMANCES AT KELLER AUDITORIUM For all the theater and artsy buffs out there, I encourage you to watch a show at Keller Auditorium. It's a double balcony 3000 seat theater with a beautiful lobby and full service cafe. I remember as a college student seeing many shows in that space and loving the overall venue and ambiance that it provided. If we have time when traveling, I always like to to see what shows or performances are in town. On our last night in Portland, we decided to see the musical, Pretty Woman. I bought these tickets about a month in advance to make sure we would be able to get seats. Since I wasn't very familiar with this show, I bought some of the cheapest tickets located in the second balcony. The show itself was okay (this is not a theatrical review) so to keep it brief, it was very similar to the movie with less than enjoyable music. On the bright side, the performers were amazing and we got to see Adam Pascal (original Roger in Rent) perform live. However, it's hard for the show to shine when the music is less than average. I did enjoy having the opportunity to visit the theater again and to see live theater. (At the time that I am writing this blog post, masks were required for all patrons.) 7. PORTLAND AERIAL TRAM Reid and I really enjoyed going on the Portland Aerial Tram for the first time which offers a beautiful view of the city. This short 5 minute tram ride is mainly for the Oregan Heath and Science University students and staff to travel between campuses. However, this tram is also open to the public for a small fee of $5.65 per person (a reasonable price for a nice view!). Some of our FOOD RECOMMENDATIONS 1. Spielman Bagels: 2314 NW LOVEJOY ST. PORTLAND,OR 97210 2. Life of Pie (PIZZA): 1765 NW 23rd Avenue Portland, OR 97210 3. Ken's Artisan Bakery (Napolean Pizza): 304 SE 28th Avenue, Portland OR 4. Hawthorne Asylum (Food Trucks): 1080 SE Madison St, Portland, OR 97214 SHOPPING! Every time I go to Oregon, I always try and hit Woodburn Outlets which is about 35-40 minutes outside of Portland. It is hands down my FAVORITE outlet mall because it has good stores and really good deals. Not to mention, Oregon does not charge sales tax which makes everything just a little bit cheaper. On this last trip to Woodburn, Reid and I found really good deals at the NIKE outlet, Disney Store, Carters, Ann Taylor, and The Loft to name a few. They have so many good stores that the deals are just hard to find anywhere else. If you want to watch our babymoon adventure part one, click here! Overall, Reid and I had a really nice trip! This was a great to culminate our time with just the two of us. Now moving forward, life will surely be different. I am ready to start new adventures, traveling with our little one, and creating new memories! For day to day updates, please follow me on instagram ***Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if anyone purchases through them. This helps support my channel so I can continue to create more blogs for Hawaii Food and Family!
- 35 WEEKS PREGNANT, My Pregnancy Journey... So Far
Currently as I am writing this, I am in the final weeks of my pregnancy. Aches and pains in my back, shortness of breath when I move or walk, and swollen feet (if I stand too long on hard surfaces) are some of the few side effects that I currently am feeling. I find it strange not being able to comfortably bend down to put on or tie my shoe and the warm feeling of my belly on my thighs when I sit is new and quite interesting to say the least. Nevertheless despite how uncomfortable pregnancy can be on my physical body, I am growing another human inside. Knowing that pregnancy is such a short time in a women's life, it is something that I want to cherish and remember. At 18 weeks, my baby girl started kicking inside of me. The movements were very subtle and random little motions that felt almost like gas bubbles. I wasn't sure at first if these were kicks, but as the weeks went by, these little kicks got stronger and more frequent. Every time I felt a kick, it reassured me that my baby girl was active and growing. By now, her kicks and movement are frequent and quite strong which can be almost uncomfortable. I feel her stretching and shifting in my belly. At times, I'll see a random bulge right by my navel. I'll gently use my hand to soften it down and then she'll adjust positions. Feeling her move (even though it can be uncomfortable) is my favorite part of pregnancy. I love the deep connection and bond that I can have with my baby when she kicks. I'm able to let her know that I'm there by rubbing my belly and having her hear my voice. Recently, I find myself constantly having my hand on my belly to make sure she's comfortable and safe. FIRST TRIMESTER: I realize that throughout my pregnancy journey, I've felt very different emotions at every stage. During the first trimester, I felt so much fear and anxiety because I knew how delicate the first 12 weeks of pregnancy can be. My husband and I got pregnant through IVF ( you can watch our whole story here: My IVF Journey ) so we just wanted to make sure that we were on track to having a healthy baby. Right before this IVF transfer, we experienced two failed IVF cycles which included a miscarriage so feeling fearful was real. Since I got pregnant through IVF, the first 12 weeks of my pregnancy was quite quiet and lonely. My doctor recommended that I don't do any exercise, lifting, twisting, or any major movement that would put my body under stress. I basically went to work, came home, and rested throughout this time. I also was taking hormone shots (you can see the bruises on my belly) and needed to get two intralipid infusions to assist in helping to make our little embryo stick and grow in my uterus. Besides fear, the only other emotion that I remember feeling at this time was fatigue. Reid basically needed to do all the cooking and household responsibilities because I either couldn't do much physically or was too tired to do anything. SECOND TRIMESTER: By the second trimester, my energy level was starting to rise and I was feeling more like myself again. The only difference was that now, I had a growing belly. We started telling friends and family our good news and I finally started to believe that we were going to have a baby. One of my favorite memories during this time was going to the Fetal Diagnostic Center to see our baby growing inside of me. Hearing her heartbeat and watching her on the screen move and wiggle brought such a relief to both Reid and I every time. Seeing this 3D image almost brought tears to my eyes because I knew that my body was growing a human inside. I very much enjoyed the second trimester, as most other women do. Overall, my appetite grew immensely and I started to really crave fresh tropical fruits... and randomly request a delicious hamburger from time to time. The weirdest thing that I started doing during this time which I'm still doing to this day, is buying a whole pineapple (weekly) and eating the whole thing throughout my week. (Reid does not like pineapple) Up until this point, I've probably eaten about 15-20 pineapples throughout my pregnancy! During this time, I slowly added short walks as exercise to my routine again which helped brighten my overall mood. As the weeks went by, I was able to take longer walks and even throw in some yoga stretches! Sleeping during the second trimester wasn't too challenging. I was debating on purchasing a pregnancy pillow but decided against it after much thought because I didn't know what I would do with it after pregnancy was done. Instead, I began using a body pillow which we already owned. I would prop it between my legs while sleeping and that seemed to give me enough comfort to get a full nights rest. This photo to my right was taken at 20 weeks. At this point, I started buying maternity clothes since my belly was starting to grow. Some of the most basic and comfortable shirts that I found were from Amazon (maternity shirts) and I still use them to this day. One of the challenges that I had to work through was watching my body change right before my eyes. After seeing myself for the last 36 years somewhat have the same build and for the last 20 years be around a similar weight, I felt as if I was starting to lose my self-confidence seeing the drastic physical changes that I was going through. I was worried that I was gaining too much weight at my stage of pregnancy and would often ask Reid if I looked okay. He was always gracious and encouraging but having these changes occur so quickly made me feel so uneasy about myself. "Am I supposed to get this big? Are my hips supposed to get wider? Why do I feel like my thighs have gotten bigger?" These are all questions that I constantly asked myself throughout the second trimester. Of course I expected these physical changes and obviously should have felt grateful for these changes because meant that my baby was growing but it was still hard to wrap my head around it all. On many occasions, I also felt guilty feeling this way because I knew that we worked so hard at getting pregnant and that there are still so many other women out there trying every day to get pregnant. However, everything changed when I felt those first few kicks from my baby. I finally decided to embrace my belly and show my body love and grace for what it was able to do. Her kicks helped to reassure me that everything was going to be okay and that whatever my body had to go through during that time was worth it for her growth and development. Personally, I feel like this was my first lesson into motherhood: Accept the changes that will have to occur for the health and wellbeing for my future children. Since then, my body has only gotten bigger and I am just grateful and amazed by this beautiful process so far. THIRD TRIMESTER: So far, the third trimester has been the most physically taxing on my body. According to the doctors and all my pregnancy apps, she is fully developed now and spending the rest of the time in my uterus gaining weight and putting on fat. Supposedly, she is expected to gain about 1/2 a pound per week till she is full term. I am slowly noticing that my tummy's shape is changing a little by becoming more oval and less round. A random stranger also told me the other day that it looks like my belly is "low" which supposedly means that she is getting ready to make her appearance in the world. I am hoping that she makes it to full term and we deliver mid July. This trimester has brought on a new range of emotions for me knowing that I will be a mother soon. I have so much anticipation as to what motherhood will look like for me and how she will respond to myself and Reid and her parents. I've been watching so many videos on YouTube about giving birth, raising new borns, and becoming new parents that I don't know if it's making me more or less confident and filled with more or less questions. At this stage, I feel like we are so close yet so far from parenthood. Also, we have been slowly starting to put together her nursery. The physical process of us spending time in there and adding the basic elements like her crib and dresser also helps me to process that we will soon be entering parenthood. I've washed her newborn and 0-3 months clothes so far and have organized her little toys and books that friends and family have given. Check out some of the items that we will be using for our baby girl here: Essentials for baby We also started to put together my hospital bag which is exciting because I know that at this stage, giving birth can happen quite soon. Here are some of the postpartum and nursing items that I will be taking with me to the hospital: Hospital Bag Items All in all, this journey of pregnancy has been one that I am truly grateful for. I've learned so much about myself and am excited to welcome our baby girl in a couple weeks. Please let me know if you enjoyed reading this blog post. I will continue to provide updates and stories about our journey through parenthood as time progresses. Here's to a new chapter! For day to day updates, please follow me on instagram ***Some of the links above are affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if anyone purchases through them. This helps support my channel so I can continue to create more blogs for Hawaii Food and Family!
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