Saturday, May 21, 2011

Torch: Handmade Accessories

The way I feel about jewelry is the way I feel about traveling - it's not necessary to survive, but it makes life just a little bit more fun. We all have our favorite jewelry stores (at least us girls do), and mine in Okinawa is undoubtedly a small shop called Torch. This tiny boutique is located along the cobblestone streets of Depot Island, one of our newly developed shopping centers here in Okinawa, and it has a really charming vibe. Distressed wooden shelving, Wire bird cages and crystal lighting fixtures all add to the "shabby-chic" interior. Keeping with a naturalist vibe, their selection of jewelry displayed on tree branches and dress mannequins is very "boho-chic" - which I'm loving right now - utilizing different metals and a variety of natural stones.

The best part about Torch is that all of their jewelry is hand-made. You will often find the two young Okinawan women that run the store standing at the back counter creating unique pieces right there on the spot. Whenever I'm in the area, I usually take a peek into this store just to see the new earrings, necklaces and bracelets on display that they've made that week - to see two exact pieces is extremely rare!

Some shots of the interior:

I love searching for new treasures here!

My new favorite earrings:)

I love this little boutique - it's one of my favorite places on the island, and I know I'm going to miss it when we finally have to leave. But until then, happy shopping!


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Birthday Month

Birthdays are usually like cupcakes - short and sweet. Unless you and your husband's birthdays happen to fall 6 days apart (as is the case here). Then it feels like you are celebrating all month long, which is just what we did! Shortly following our trip to Taiwan, we rang in my 26th birthday (yes, I'm now on my way to "30 Town" folks!) with a night out at Margaritaville with some amazing friends.

Opening my gifts from Matt - some amazing lenses for the camera

Margaritaville is basically a big tropical themed party that comes around once a year - complete with cover charge, tropical attire, bottomless drinks, and a Beach Boys cover band. Okay, so the music wasn't the best part, but the rest of the night was pretty great! Everyone buys a ticket for the night, and once you arrive, they hand you one of those extra tall glasses with a straw that can be filled and refilled all night from the various bars offering Margaritas, Daquiris and Pina Coladas. They were even giving out 6-packs of Coronas! The drinks were great, but the food was delicious - they had station after station set up in an outdoor tent for you to pick and choose from. They all had people making the food right there in front of you - crab cakes, beef and pork skewers, pastas... so many more I can't remember! The dinner and desserts were both fantastic, but the best part of the night by far was our company - good friends really make everything in life better (and so does a gorgeous Michael Kors watch as a birthday present. Just saying... :)

Never a shortage of drinks

Matt and I

Nick & Amanda

Lyndsey & Andrez

My favorite Oki girls with our tall Margaritaville glasses

My new favorite watch (my only watch) - Thanks Lyndsey & Amanda!

Despite the lack of Margaritas and Beach Boy songs, we had a blast celebrating Matt's 27th birthday the following weekend (he's just on the outskirts of "30 Town"!). After exchanging gifts on Friday (Matt's actual birthday), we headed out to one of our favorite restaurants for dinner - Bollywood Dreams - on Saturday night . There to surprise him as we walked in were our amazing friends - all there to celebrate with us:) They really made his night!

Matt with his new toy - a fishing spear

at Bollywood Dreams - where the Indian Naan bread is twice the size of your head and comes on coat racks!

The birthday boy with some Indian Ice Cream

The guys

The girls:)

The conclusion to our birthday celebrations

Thanks for following as always!


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Good Bye Osama Bin Laden

I'll never forget what I was doing the moment I first heard about Princess Diana's car crash, or the first plane being flown into the World Trade Center, or the devastating earthquake in Tokyo. Recently, another history-making moment will be forever etched into my memory - the day I was at work and my co-worker and friend, Johanna, came running up to me practically yelling the news that the US Navy Seals had finally found and killed Osama Bin Laden. No other name brings to mind as much hate and evil as his did over the past ten years of my life as a teenager and young adult. Although this doesn't end any wars or stop every terrorist out there, I am forever proud of and grateful for the United States Military and how they give their all to protect our country's freedoms. No one forces our military to join. These men (and women) join out of honor to their country. In fact, the terrorist acts on 9/11 are the main reason Matt decided to become a US Marine, and it's dedication like that that still makes the United States Military the greatest fighting force in the world. Proud to be an American? You bet I am.