Impressions from my trip last week to Hawaii included balmy winds, the fragrant smell of tuberose wafting up from my lei, the excitement of watching land being creating via spurting lava into the ocean, and some coco-nutty cocktails. It was a trip to research the Art of Self-Care August trip to Hawaii (yes, I admit it, it was a vacation from chilly Reno too and some time with hubby). One of the most inspiring moments was meeting Jeanne, the hotel owner of Hawaii Resort Retreats. More on that in a future blog post. For now, check out some of the awe-inspiring sights of Hawaii below.

The aloha spirit writ large.

Beautiful koi fish with their golden hues.

In Hawaii, you see the birth of land (aka lava) on one side of the island, and then further south, where it gets more rain, it turns into a botanical forest. Hawaii has over 10 different environments (or ecological systems). 

In Hawaii, you see the birth of land (aka lava) on one side of the island, and then further south, where it gets more rain, it turns into a botanical forest. Hawaii has over 10 different environments (or ecological systems). 

Mother Earth birthing land. Volcano was active!

Mother Earth birthing land. Volcano was active!

Can you tell how much I love flowers?

Proud, vibrant colors flaunted in the Hilo botantical gardens. 

A beautiful flower that looked like it had a white light bulb inside it.  

I bet assembling rock sculptures is a very meditative process...one day.

I bet assembling rock sculptures is a very meditative process...one day.

Waipio Valley - we hiked down and some very kind soul drove us up the 1,200 foot climb back.

Ancient etching of a pregnant woman in the Petroglyph Park. Women were denoted by wide hips to indicate birthing potential. If only we all had 1 foot hips!

I'm about 6'2, so you can get a sense of how tall this leaf is at the Hilo botanical garden.

Good times with hubby.

Doesn't this parrot look friendly? At least he didn't imitate my laughter like the parrot at the entrance to Hilo Zoo did.

Doesn't this parrot look friendly? At least he didn't imitate my laughter like the parrot at the entrance to Hilo Zoo did.