From a really young age, I've always been interested in history, so much so that I minored in it in college. I love hearing stories about people and places and learning about the things that happened before us and I'm pretty sure I got that from my dad. My pops loved to learn new things, especially about Hawaiian history and culture.
Growing up, pops would take us holoholo all over the island to all his "secret" spots. He would tell us all about the history of the place and why it was so special. Whether it was a story from his childhood, an ancient Hawaiian legend, a historical event he learned about, or just a little factoid, he always had a story for these places and I loved hearing them from him. I loved that every place had a history behind it and that he had such a special connection to each of these places.
Lōliʻi was inspired by my love for Hawaiʻi. I was born and raised on the island of Oʻahu. Swimming in its ocean, hiking in its valleys and mountains, dipping my toes into its ponds and streams, feeling all the different winds and rains, gazing up at the stars on clear nights- Hawaiʻi has given me so much. It is my constant source of peace and inspiration and a place that brings me so much comfort and joy. I couldn't help but think of ways that I could begin to give back to this 'āina that has given me so much.
Sadly, many landmarks and places today are know by their nicknames or foreign names instead of their actual Hawaiian names. I decided to rename Lōliʻi pieces after significant places in Hawai’i that are very dear to me, using their Hawaiian names. Ku’u wahi pana. I chose to do this to honor my Hawaiian culture and these extraordinary places, but also to honor my dad, who loved me with all his heart and always taught me to embrace my culture proudly.
Wahi Pana is a collection of articles I've written and created to tell the story behind these names and to help combat the attempted erasure of Hawaiʻi- Hawaiʻi people, Hawaiʻi language, and Hawaiʻi culture. I ka ʻōlelo nō ke ola, I ka ʻōlelo nō ka make. Every product description has a link to one of these articles where you can learn more about that specific place.