Hawaii Mom Blog






February 19, 2019

Easy Chili Recipe

A few months ago I met a friend of mine, Stu, for lunch.  I hadn't seen him in years, so it was great to catch up.  He has three kids as well, and when the conversation turned to cooking for the kids, I explained how I really don't cook much.  So he gave me a very easy chili recipe that his kids liked. 

The recipe requires very little prep time.  His recipe calls for 1 green bell pepper, but I despise bell peppers, so I left it out.

And turns out, my kids approved the chili as well.  It was really tasty, and next time I'm making a triple batch so I can freeze some!

Thank you, Stu!

Stu's Easy Chili Recipe


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 packet McCormick's Chili Mix
  • 1 can tomato soup
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 can kidney beans
  • 1 can pork and beans


  • Brown beef and drain fat
  • Add in onions and cook for 2-3 minutes
  • Stir in chili mix, tomato soup, cream of mushroom soup, kidney beans, and pork and beans.
  • Simmer for 20 minutes.

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February 18, 2019

How We Created the Perfect Momcation at the Fairmont Kea Lani

The Hawaii Mom Blog team kicked off 2019 with a fabulous girls getaway / momcation at the amazing Fairmont Kea Lani.

Here is how we created the perfect momcation at Fairmont Kea Lani:

1) Stay in a 3-Bedroom Ocean Front Villa.  We each got our own room, and the villa had a full kitchen, washer dryer, and even a plunge pool! 
2) Burn some calories on the Wailea Coastal Walk, which fronts the Fairmont Kea Lani.
3) Drink cocktails and eat pupus at AMA Bar & Grill.
4) Make an appointment at Willow Stream Spa and get pampered!
5) Enjoy some locally-made wine (or vodka!) in the comfort of your villa.
6) Watch the sunset from the lanai.
7) Take advantage of the Courtesy Car, which drops off and picks up guests within the Wailea area. 
8) Enjoy the colorful sky at sunrise.
9)  Walk along Polo Beach, which is just steps away from the resort.
10) Rent a cabana at the Adult pool.  The Cabana Experience includes ice cold refreshments, as well as mochi ice cream!
We only stayed at the Fairmont Kea Lani for a single night, so we truly made the most of our short time there.

So what are you waiting for?  Grab some fellow moms and take a luxurious momcation at the Fairmont Kea Lani!

Mahalo to the Fairmont Kea Lani for hosting our stay.  Gratuities were paid on our own.

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Joy Cup Noodles Mean

If the chilly weather has given you the craving for a nice, warm, bowl of noodles, check out Joy Cup Noodles Mean!  I recently attended an event at this hole-in-the-wall eatery on Kalakaua (disclosure: Joy Cup Noodles Mean is a client of AdStreamz, another company I work for), and I had a chance to sample a variety of their dishes, many of which are Chong Qing favorites.

Sour Chicken Noodle

Beef Noodle
Pork Belly Noodle
Blanket Noodle
But if you're craving for something chilled, or perhaps something other than noodles, Joy Cup Noodles Mean has got you covered!
Spicy Potatoes

Cucumber Salad

Okinawa Taco Rice

Cold Sesame Noodle
Dan Dan Noodle
Potsticker Dumplings
And if you're feeling a bit adventurous, try the Couples Lung, made with beef, pig skin, cow stomach, and cow tongue.  It's actually quite tasty!
Couples Lung
I had so many favorites - the Dumplings, the Okinawa Taco Rice, and the Pork Belly Noodle were just a few.  Many favored the Cold Sesame Noodle and the Dan Dan Noodle, and I enjoyed those dishes too.  They were bursting with flavor, and perfect no matter what the weather!

Joy Cup Noodles Mean even offers a variety of homemade ice creams!
If you take the kiddos, they do offer a Kids Meal - Macaroni & Cheese with SPAM + Chocolate Milk, but the bowls of noodles are definitely large enough to share with them.  

Take the entire family to Joy Cup Noodles Mean!

Joy Cup Noodles Mean
1608 Kalakaua Ave
Honolulu, HI 96826

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February 16, 2019

Valentine's Day Dinner at Home

Not too many people I know go out for dinner on Valentine's Day - restaurants are crowded, expensive, set their menus (so often times you don't get to order what you really want to eat), and if you have kids, it's just downright not possible! 

For me, I've never been a huge fan of the day in general, especially nowadays as it seems like it's commercialized to the Nth degree (what isn't these days?!).  But in my husband's eyes, it's still a special day, so he surprised me with dinner to-go from The Officer's Club at the Marine Corp Base Hawaii.

The three course dinner came with hors d'oevres ...

an Ahi Nicoise Salad ...

haricots verts, cherry tomatoes, olives and a Thai Chili Vinaigrette

Herb Garlic Focaccia bread and choice of entree  (he selected the chicken saltimbocca) ...

Madeira Mushroom cream sauce

and a Jack Daniel's Chocolate Pot de Creme with candied orange for dessert.

I live for enjoying restaurant-quality food in the comforts of my own home, surrounded by my forever Valentines (my hubby and son).  Hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's Day as well!

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February 15, 2019

DYNE by Chefbuddha

While in Hilo, I made it to the DYNE by Chefbuddha pop-up.  Chef Dayne Tanabe, Chef of Restaurants at Hilton Waikoloa Village, has been regularly doing pop-ups on the Big Island since last summer.  Done in conjunction with Bahay Kubo Store, the pop-ups feature Chef Dayne's local-style dishes, many of them Filipino-inspired, along with popular Filipino snacks from Bahay Kubo Store, as well as homemade goodies from local businesses.

 I ordered the following from DYNE:
Lechon Kawali

Pork Adobo Fried Rice Burrito
Both were really tasty, but I liked the Lechon Kawali the best.

Next time I want to try the Mexican Street Corn and one of the Halo Halo creations!

Follow @dyne.chefbuddha on Instagram to see where he'll be popping up next!

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Two Ways to Dine at Restaurant Suntory

Restaurant Suntory is one of my all time favorite restaurants in Hawaii. My parents used to take us here for dinner when we were kids, and even to this day we still have family dinners here (and now 'family dinners' include my five year old twin sons!).

Restaurant Suntory offers two styles of Japanese dining - Teppanyaki and Washoku..


If you're looking for traditional style Japanese cuisine, make a reservation in their regular dining room or sushi bar area. For my friend's 41st birthday, his family hosted family and friends to an amazing washoku style dinner in the sushi bar. 

midori sour blended

spicy ahi sushi roll

assorted sashimi

miso soup

miso butterfish

wafu steak gozen


green tea ice cream


For me personally, I prefer the teppanyaki room at Suntory. Don't get me wrong, their traditional "washoku" dishes are divine, but I LOVE teppanyaki, because I get to see my food prepared, and it comes straight from the grill to my plate!

green salad

shrimp appetizer

chicken (for my twins)

grilled veggies

garlic fried rice


certified angus sirloin (don't forget to ask for the garlic chips!)

bean sprouts


Restaurant Suntory is also open for lunch! Read about Gem's lunch at Suntory HERE!

Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center
Bldg B, Third Level, B307
2233 Kalakaua Ave
(808) 922-5511

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