Sunday, March 15, 2009

What is your Legacy?

"What is your Legacy?" This question is meant to get you thinking about living for a higher purpose than just the "day to day"...I would like to dedicate this post and the cafe to 2 wonderful men who have influenced Suzette and I in the most important way: they loved us unconditionally. Red Ginger Cafe is their legacy.

My Dad is Jim and Suzette's is Walter, they both worked hard their whole lives for their families. They instilled a good work ethic in both of us and taught us to take what life sent our way with grace and dignity. They set good examples for their children and their communities and lived "pono". They were active in our lives, always volunteering within our extra-curricular activities. Our Dads also had another thing in common, both knew how to have a good time and could be counted on the "bring the party" if you know what I mean. Both Dads passed away recently of Cancer, my new mantra is "Cancer sucks". Suzette and I still carry the best parts of them in our hearts.

My Dad grew up in Papakolea and in the valleys surrounding the homestead there is an abundance of Red Ginger flowers. Maybe this was why he always grew it in our yard and put it in vases in around house. I never understood why he would adore such a "common flower", I used to tease him that Red Ginger was a weed not a flower. He would always smile, a knowing smile, you know the one father's give us when they know a secret and we have not proven ourselves worthy to be let in on it. Well I think the lesson to be learned is that there is beauty in the most common everyday things. He wasn't fascinated by the rarer more delicate pua that we covet at the lei stores, instead he saw the beauty in the large, waxy, red torch ginger in everyone's backyard. How wonderful is that? To be able to STOP and enjoy the beauty of his own life, never having to search for more, knowing that the most beautiful part of his day was right in his backyard?

I'm going to have to end this now because its getting a little heavy for me, but you get my point. Be happy with your flaws, embrace your differences...Love those around you as if they may leave tomorrow. Always tell people how much you appreciate them and enjoy what the Akua have given more day.

Ho`i Hou i ka Iwi Kuamo`o.

Red Ginger Cafe Manoa

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Kulia's Korner

Kulia is my 6 year old son. He goes to Ma`ema`e Elementary and he's in the 1st grade.  Recently Kulia came home and started looking at all our plastic-wear in the house...I asked him what he was doing...he said that he was checking the recycling codes.  Well, that day at school he had learned what the # meant on the bottom of his water bottle.  By heart he knew which numbers were good for recycling, what numbers meant to reuse the container and which ones were BAD for the environment like styrafoam cups.  Quite honestly I didn't even really know what exactly the numbers meant before he told me.  That boy is forever impressing me! 

We've been using WorldCentric biocompostable to go containers in the cafe, we're hoping other businesses will be inspired to use these as well because they are the  most eco-friendly ones available.

I've attached a link to Wikipedia's guide for you to do some research, hopefully we can be more aware of what we are using! Thanks Kulia!

"Each Day of our lives we make deposits in the memory banks of our children." -Charles R. Swindoll

Red Ginger Cafe Manoa 

Friday, March 6, 2009

Red Ginger Cafe - Manoa Shout Outs!

Hope you're all enjoying this WINDY weather!

For those of you that haven't heard me rave about this yet, WE HAVE THE BEST CUSTOMERS...EVER!!!! We've had this great little family visit us since we opened, their beautiful little son (Micah) first caught out attention because he is so well-spoken for such a young little man. Mike and Julie (Micah's Parents) have been so loyal and helpful and have even helped guide us through the process of creating our website (which is coming soon!).
How can we ever thank them enough for their time? ~ how about a lifetime supply of Pick Me Ups, Mike?

Julie and Mike's generosity is just one story of MANY of guests who have gone above and beyond to help us! Because of this we realize more than ever the importance of giving back to our community and helping others. Stay tuned 'cause we're constantly brainstorming to see what we can do!

Look to be Treated by others as you have treated others...Publius Syrus.

Red Ginger Cafe Manoa

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Aikane Plantation Coffee now served at Red Ginger Cafe Manoa Marketplace

I wanted to update everyone on some new coffee that we're serving in the cafe now.

Aikane Plantation Coffee
Aikane's first trees were planted in 1894 by Merle's great grandfather, 115 years later Merle and her husband are coming back to their roots and harvesting these absolutely delicious coffee cherries.

I'm learning a lot about coffee from (Merle's husband - Phil), Aikane coffee is an estate coffee, this means that there are 3 different beans in the roast ~ Fancy, Extra Fancy, and Peaberry. If it says "Estate" then it must have these 3 beans. We serve this medium - dark roast for only $2.25 the only other restaurant in Oahu serving it is selling theirs for $6.00. It really is great coffee, full bodied, smooth, full of flavor...This is for serious coffee drinkers. We're trying to help Aikane get their coffee into the White House to be the official coffee served...Got any connections we can take advantage of?

The Hawaii Seal of Quality is a government project aimed at rewarding and identifying agriculture that meets the highest quality standards, the farms must go through rigorous testing, as you can imagine its a long application process. Aikane Coffee is the ONLY Ka`u coffee with the Hawaii Seal of Quality.

Everyone knows KONA coffee, but Ka`u coffee is overshadowed and often overlooked by the better known Kona brand. We support Aikane because they are a family owned local business and they are great people, Phil comes to talk story and eat all the time, which we love and he treats us like friends instead of customers. We'll do whatever we can to support his plantation and hope you'll enjoy it along the way!

Hope to see you all soon! Take Care.

Red Ginger Cafe Manoa

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Valentine's Sale

Hi Everyone! If you're getting this post as an email its because I'm (finally) learning how to use the features of this website and have requested that you receive this via email.

Just letting everyone know that we're making room in our gift shop for some new retail items so everything is 25-30% off! We're planning to bring in some organic clothing and more recycled bags soon but need more room!!! Come down during the month of February and get some goodies!

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the Life you have Imagined. (Henry Thoreau)

Red Ginger Gift Shop and Cafe in Manoa Marketplace

Friday, February 6, 2009

What is Fair Trade?

I was recently asked what the importance of Fair Trade is to Red Ginger. Well, Fair Trade products help farmers and their families make a better living by ensuring that they are paid a decent price for their products. This is important in the global economy because historically powerful capitalistic nations have taken advantage of their host countries and made large profits off of their low wage employees.
This is important to us because of the OBVIOUS ~ it is not PONO. We work with a variety of suppliers who help us to ensure that we are supporting fair trade. Some include Encore Bags, Coldfyre Cookie Cremes, Madison and Marcela Toffees, Yummy Earth candies, Fukunaga Produce and the Tea Chest. Maintaining relationships with these companies are important to us because it is always better to have all of us doing research about our products than for just Red Ginger alone to bear the responsibility. We are happy to partner with these companies because their mission of sustainability is in line with ours.

On another note!!! Lt. Governor Aiona visited our cafe for lunch the other day! I wasn't able to get a picture with him but it sure was exciting to have him in our humble establishment!!!

A loving heart is the TRUEST wisdom (Charles Dickens)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Encore Recycled Bags

Another exclusive product at Red Ginger Cafe - Manoa

We have been carrying an exclusive product for about 3 months now, bags made of recycled juice pouches. They are super cute and stylish at an affordable cost. For those of you who've been by you know that we have an ec0-friendly gift shop. When researching for my business plan I realized that there are no gift shops in Hawaii dedicated solely to eco-friendliness, as far as I now we are the only one. Let me know if you know of any others...
Anyway, I digress...These bags support a co-op in the Phillipines which allow women to earn a living and support their families while ensuring that their children are safe throughout the day. Kelly, Cherie and Rica are the 3 sisters that import the bags were born in the Phillipines, when they visited a few years back they found this co-op and wanted to support it because they saw how they could help the families, particularly the children. So they've been importing them for awhile now, some of you may have seen them at their kiosk in Waikele or Ala Moana. They've since closed their retail outlets and are doing the craft fair circuit. We're so lucky to have met these ladies, their commitment to helping others is inspiring and we are so happy to a part of it!
We try to carry styles for all types of women from handbags to lunchboxes so come down and have a look! They're on sale till the end of this week at 20% off!

If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.
If you want to be happy, practice compassion.
(The 14th Dalai Lama)