Category Archives: Family

Bula and Hello from Philadelphia


My apologies for being on hiatus from this blog. I do appreciate all of you for following my humble blog and for your comments. As you may have read, this blog is about the mundane and simple stories of my life as a Pacific woman living in Philadelphia.

This past year, 2016,  was an extremely busy one for this Pacific Woman in Philly. At the beginning of the year, I focused solely on honing in on  my design skills. Moore College of Art helped me grow rapidly in that area of my life….and did I mention… I love that school. Most days I was designing patterns and sewing outfits, from here to Timbuktu. In between the schooling, designing and sewing, I babysat the grandkids or namakus. I also had time in between all the handiwork to visit the sights, the sounds and the  museums of Philly. I also concentrated on living a healthy lifestyle by doing yoga and eating healthy.

In the middle of 2016, I travelled to Fiji, New Zealand and Australia. While travelling, I focused on journaling about some of the funny and interesting stuff I encountered and also did a little bit of drawing. I may (emphasis on the word “may”) show some of my doodles in a future blog, along with pictures and memories of the wonderful time I had on my trip.

By the time the end of 2016 rolled around, I needed to take a rest from the long trip, plus prepare for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas and not forgetting the Presidential elections and all the hoopla that came along with it. All in all, 2016 was a fruitful and  learning year for this Pacific woman.

Vinaka vakalevu and thank you for following and hoping you’re having a wonderful day or night wherever you may be in this beautiful world.



Three things about my mother-in-law.

Kelly O'Brien Madden pic
Family celebrating mom’s 93rd birthday.

This past weekend, this Pacific Woman in Philly (PWIP) celebrated along with her family the 93rd birthday of my lovely mother-in-law, Eileen. My blog today will be about my relationship with her.

I can’t tell you how blessed and grateful I am to have met and also to have a mother-in-law like her. I love many things about Mom, but most of all  the three things I appreciate about this lady are: her acceptance, her respect and her inspiration.

Looking back on the years, I did not know what to expect from my relationship with my mother-in-law. We are from two different worlds. We have different family backgrounds (me, an islander from the South Pacific and her, an Irish/American); we had different approaches to raising children; running households;  and cooking, just to name a few. No matter the differences, my mother-in-law embraces me like her own daughter.

I found my mother-in-law to not only be accepting, but Mom has always been                   very respectful of my culture and background. She loves my cooking and the many experiments I try in the kitchen. She unconditionally loves and respects not only me, but all her in laws and she rejoices in everything her grandkids and great grandkids take part in.

As I did not know anyone else from the Pacific that travelled or lived in this part of the world, my mother-in-law was someone I looked up to for inspiration. I figured if she could do it, I guess I could also. She was a working mom who raised 6 wonderful children.

Thank you, Mom, for being my American inspiration. Thank you for your wonderful son, my husband, Kevin. Without you, there wouldn’t be our love.

Sadly, my dear mother-in-law was called to rest on Tuesday morning, three days after celebrating her 93rd birthday.