Sunday, August 30, 2015


One of our favorite evening activities was going to Front Street, in the city of Lahaina. It is a historic town that now has numerous art galleries, shops, and restaurants. It was the capital city from 1820 to 1845 when King Kanehaneha ruled. The capital was later moved to Honolulu. We came at around 7:00 pm so we can watch the sunset. When the sun was almost down, all the people lined the street along the ocean to watch the sunset. Each second, the sun goes lower and lower until it disappears. When the sun is down, the sky is filled with beautiful colors, such as red, orange, pink, and yellow.

After watching the sunset, we headed toward one of our favorite spots to climb, the very old and famous banyan tree.  It is a 137 year old tree that was planted in 1873. It was a huge tree, with numerous roots and branches for us to climb. We swung from branch to branch, and climbed around until we were ready to go and visit the galleries.  Every Friday evening, the artists that have their paintings and photos showcased in the galleries, come out to to answer questions, and explain their work. We chatted with some of the photographers, and were surprised to find out that they sometimes had to wait years and years, until they finally got the perfect photo. The paintings and photos were beautiful, and we enjoyed learning about their work and getting to know them. After walking around for a while, we all were hungry and went out for dinner. The restaurant had a view of the ocean, and there was live music playing while we ate.

My friend showing me her awesome drawing
While in Maui, we met a girl named Florenel at the beach one day, and we all played with her while my parents talked with her parents. She is from Montreal, and stayed in the condo complex near us and was able to came over to play with us. She speaks Russian, English, and French fluently, and is learning Spanish. She also draws really well, and drew pieces from chess, a butterfly, a race car, and dolphins in the ocean for my siblings and I to keep to remember her. One evening she came to Lahaina with us, and we all spent time together looking around at the galleries, going out for dinner, and watching the gorgeous sunset.

Eating dinner with friends

We will miss her and her family and promised to keep in touch. Hopefully one day soon we will be able to meet again either in Montreal or in Los Angeles.

A beautiful rainbow taken from the car as we left Lahaina

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Guest Post by Hannah: Road Trip To Hana

Recently, while we were vacationing in Maui, my family and I went to Hana. Since we liked it so much we made the drive twice to make sure we had an opportunity to see everything. Hana is a tropical rainforest, and a beautiful city. We woke up extra early so we can pack everything such as water shoes, towels, food, and water, as we were in Hana for the whole day. After, we all were packed and ready to leave my mom took this CD about Hana. We took a CD on the way that showed the directions and about the different waterfalls and trails. As we were driving, we looked out of the window and saw the beautiful scenery.

crossed a lot of shaky bridges
 Our first stop was a very muddy and steep trail that would lead us to three different waterfalls. We first had to put on water shoes because it started raining.  As we were hiking, we had to cross a river, and hike through mud, until we got to the first waterfall. The second waterfall was even more difficult to reach because we had to hold on to a rope while climbing up the rocks. My sister, Sarah, helped me and my brother get up to the top. After that, we finally saw the gorgeous waterfall. The waterfall dropped into this big pool that we swam in. The water was cold, but refreshing after the long hike.The first time we made this trip, we only were able to reach the first two waterfalls.  However on our second trip to Hana, we hiked to the third waterfall as well. The third waterfall was much harder than the other two because we had to climb a ladder, climb rocks and swim about 100 meters through a river to reach the third waterfall. This third waterfall was the largest of all of them and we felt really proud that we made it. As we started hiking back to the car, we kept on getting our shoes muddy so whenever we saw a pool of water, we washed them.

Waterfall #1

climbing up to waterfall #2

Finally, as we safely arrived back we started driving to the next trail. We stopped for lunch at this place that had benches and we ate lunch there.
Eating lunch and enjoying the view

 After lunch our next stop was Black Sand Beach and then Red Sand Beach. Black Sand beach has black sand and huge waves which made it dangerous to swim far out. Red Sand beach was difficult to reach because we had to hike on a steep path that lead to a beach with beautiful red color sand. Unfortunately, there was a really strong current that pulled you out toward the rocks, so we also couldn't swim at this beach.
Black sand beach
Huge waves at black sand beach
Red sand beach

Enjoying the tropical fruits in Hana

Our next stop was the Venus pools. The first time we drove to Hana, we couldn't find the Venus pool, but we are really glad that we found it the second time because it was a beautiful pool of water near the beach. As we arrived we had to hike down a little path and suddenly you see a huge pool of bright blue water. The pool is a mix of salt water from the ocean and freshwater from the waterfalls. The pool was very deep, and we saw people jumping off the high rocks above the pool. Sarah, Michael, and I also jumped off the cliffs into the warm water. 

Here is a short video of Sarah and Michael jumping off the cliff.

Our final stop was the seven pools. There are actually 24 pools in that area but the place is called seven pools probably because it sounds better that way. We had to hike half a mile to reach the pools.  This area was very windy and the water was much colder than the Venus because the seven pool has freshwater. Here, we also swam and jumped off the rocks before leaving for home.  As we got to our car we looked at the time and it was already seven o'clock so we started the two hour drive back to our condo. This was a full day trip, as we left at 8 o'clock and got home after 9 pm. This was definitely my favorite place we have been to in Maui.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

A Beautiful Evening Luau

During our stay in Maui, we went to a luau, a popular Hawaiian event. The luau was located in the Grand Wailea Resort, a huge and beautiful resort right on the beach. A luau is a feast of Hawaiian food, usually held outdoors and accompanied by Hawaiian entertainment.At a luau, there were hula dancers, fire dances, and Hawaiian singers. Right before the show began, they had activities for children such as a hula dance lesson, face painting, and  bracelet making out of taro leaves.

When we arrived, they started with a tradition of roasting a pig. They also kept us refreshed with numerous drinks, and the dinner was delicious. After everyone had eaten, and felt refreshed, they started the show. There was a narrator telling stories about the Hawaiians and their culture while the hula dancers danced on the stage. The hula dancers shook there hips and turned around very fast. Their costumes were made up of taro leaves, a special plan that grows in Hawaii. The best part of the entertainment was the fire dance. It was very exciting to watch the male dancers spin, touch, and even eat the fire without getting burnt. They were also able to put out the fire with there skirts. I really enjoyed watching the show, and look forward to the next time we go to a luau.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Guest Post by Hannah: Fur Elise by Beethoven

I recently learned another famous piece by Beethoven called Fur Elise. This is not my first time playing a piece by Beethoven; last time I played Sonata Opus No 2 Part 1.

Beethoven wrote Fur Elise on April 27, 1810. however, this piece was only published in 1867, long after he died. No one knows for sure who the song was written for, but historians think that maybe he wrote the song for his friend and student named Therese Malfatti. I think this piece is beautiful because the melody is soft and pretty. It was an easy piece to learn, but it is not always easy to make it sound beautiful.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Guest Post Hannah: Mozart Sonatina in C major

A few days ago, my mom recorded me playing Sonatina in C major by Mozart.  All Sonata's have three movements, and the second movement was the longest. It took me about a month to learn the whole piece.  Mozart was born on January 27, 1756 in Salisbury, Austria, and was a very famous Austrian composer. He started composing music at the age of 5. Mozart's father, Leopold, took Mozart on many concert tours. He married in 1782, and had a happy family. This piece was difficult for me to learn because it was fast, and very long. I really like this song because the melody sounds beautiful.

I hope you enjoy listening!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Wedding Day at the Troldhaugen by Edvard Grieg

I recently recorded a piece called Wedding Day at the Troldhaugen by Grieg. Edvard Grieg was born on June 15,1843 in Bergen, Norway and died in September 4,1907. He composed numerous amount of Norwegian folk music, and  performed these folk songs in front of large audiences on the piano. He composed in the Romantic period, and is widely considered one of the leading Romantic era composers.  He composed 66 short pieces, published in ten different books, one of them is the Wedding day at the Troldhaugen.

This piece was a very difficult piece as there were many chords that were fast, and there were numerous octaves that were hard to reach. It was also difficult to memorize as only one part repeated itself during the entire piece. Although it was difficult, it was a beautiful piece and I really enjoyed playing it.

I hope you enjoy listening!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Bach invention 14

This past month, I have been working on a piece called Invention 14 by Bach. I worked very hard to learn all the right notes, and playing parts loud and quiet. Many of Bach's pieces have two voices/melodies, the right hand has one melody, and the left hand has a different melody. When I play, I am supposed to show both melodies.  Bach wrote these Inventions, as exercises for his students to play. He wrote one invention for all of the scales. These pieces weren't meant to be performed, however they are beautiful, so we decided to record them anyway. 

I hope you enjoy listening!