In today’s “Cabin Fever Diaries,” we catch up with up with MIKOH’s Kalani and Oleema Miller, who are quarantining separately. The sisters tell us how they’ve been coping these past few months and how they’ve adjusted to current times.
Where are you right now and who you are you with?
Kalani: I am solo in quarantine in California which I am surprisingly enjoying. My boyfriend got stuck in Australia during the lockdowns so it’s a lot of FaceTime dates. My family lives within walking distance so it’s nice to have support of family and of course I have my fearless pup companion, Action.
Oleema Miller: I’m really counting my lucky stars that I am in Hawai’i on the island of Oahu at the moment with my pups, Panda and Ponzu and my boyfriend, Bryan. I live between here and California and decided staying in Hawai’i was the best decision. Not to mention I’m in the middle of a giant remodel on my new home so it was kind of a no brainer!
Have you learned anything new about yourself since social distancing?
Kalani: For almost a decade I have lived a very nomadic lifestyle. I called myself a retired homebody because I always enjoyed being at home. Personally, I have really cherished this quarantine time and enjoy spending time by myself. I have done a lot of meditation, more cooking than I have in months, working hard equally physically and for our company, MIKOH, and reading books. I’m grateful to feel like I’m thriving in solitude.
Oleema: I have learned a lot about myself. I have learned that I have even more patience than I ever could have imagined, was surprisingly okay with not leaving my house for NINE weeks (crazy!!) and that I missed cooking more than I could have ever thought. This time has been such a blessing – I am always on the move, always traveling, and always running around like a crazy person. Being forced to sit, relax, and embrace my surroundings has been undoubtedly difficult at times, but ultimately so rewarding.
What has been the biggest change to your routine?
Kalani: Although I do enjoy my quiet personal time, adjusting to not being around tons of people and the normal hustle and bustle of daily life is hard at times. I think just the social interaction, or lack thereof, is difficult. I have tried to embrace and accept that everyone has hard times and hard days.
Oleema: I’d say the biggest change is that I have to force myself to take breaks during the day to get outside, jump in the ocean, or take a walk. Since I am still working full time for my company, MIKOH, which is also on a California time zone, in the midst of a giant home renovation, and keeping up with friends and family on all different time zones, I find myself sometimes glued to my computer, to a home project, or on my phone. Putting everything down, whether it’s a device or a project, and getting out and getting fresh air has been the biggest game changer.
What do you miss most about life before the quarantine?
Kalani: I miss sitting down and having a glass of wine and feeling close to my friends and that bond that you get from being physically close to people.
Oleema: The number one thing I miss most, without a doubt, is my family. We are extremely close and not seeing them for this long of a period of time really breaks my heart. Traveling, eating out at my favorite restaurants and seeing girlfriends are all things that I obviously miss as well but nothing compares to a hug from my momma or daddio or spending time with my siblings. I cannot wait to see them as soon as I possibly can.
How are you staying active?
Kalani : I am obsessed with pilates and have a small reformer in my house. Also, I have been taking my dog for lots of walks and hikes as well as bike rides to the beach now that it is open.
Oleema: Surfing, going for walks, and swimming have been my easy go-to’s. I also just recently signed up for the Sculpt Society. Megan Roup has absolutely kicked my butt in the best way possible and I am obsessed. If you haven’t seen it before, it’s definitely worth checking out. All of the classes are fun, uplifting, and the best part- you can do them all from your living room.
How’s your sleep?
Kalani: Sleep is something that I have definitely struggled with. During quarantine, I have tried to stay on a strict schedule. I wear blue light glasses at night and have found that that really helps if I am going to watch TV. I also try not to go on my phone before bed.
Oleema: To be honest, it’s been pretty terrible. I am a pretty anxious person. I wish I wasn’t and it’s always a work in progress type of situation. I have been having the most vivid dreams every night. I have surprisingly been going to sleep around 9PM (usually I stay up until around midnight, so this is a big change) and have been waking up every morning around 5:30AM. To help relax with sleep I’ve been using Feals CBD (AMAZING!) and Garden of Life CBD for sleeping. Both products are so amazing, and they’ve helped so, so much.
What are you doing to help others?
Kalani: At MIKOH, giving back to our community is a huge thing. We have taken our excess fabric and have sewn masks for friends as well as those on the front line. Additionally, we partnered with health and vitamin/supplement company Garden of Life. I have taken their supplements for years and we worked with them to bring vitamins as well as their other amazing products to those on the front line. Nurses and doctors at San Francisco a General Hospital as well as the hard-working lifeguards on the North Shore of Hawaii are now a little healthier! We are so grateful for our essential workers!
Oleema: I’ve taken this time to check in with friends, family, neighbors, and my co-workers. I think it’s so easy to fall into a pattern of being concerned with yourself, your surroundings, and those close to you. I’ve found such joy in speaking with my Tutu Sally, my elderly neighbors, my aunts and seeing if there is anything I can do for them. Sometimes a simple ten minute phone call can make someone’s entire day and is so easy to do.
If you could be in self-isolation with anyone, who would it be?
Kalani: I am honestly happy where I am! Of course, I wish my partner was with me!
Oleema: I’m with my boyfriend at our home but, because he is lifeguard and considered a First Responder, he has been working his normal hours. Often times, I really am missing my sister, Kalani. We usually are connected at the hip and pretty much spend every waking moment together so not having her a part of my daily life has been pretty difficult.
What’s the weirdest thing you’ve found yourself doing since distancing/isolating?
Kalani: Looking at the positive, I am surprised at how much I am loving this. We are very fortunate that our family and friends are safe.
Oleema: Well, I already talked to my pup Panda (to which I know my boyfriend think’s I’m strange to do), but now I’ve caught myself having full blown conversations with her. I’ve had her for ten years and I swear she can understand me. She is the best.
What are you most anxious about?
Kalani: I think that I am most anxious about the world and the changes it is going to see. It has been so eye-opening to see the environmental changes that can happen after giving the earth a couple months break. It is scary to think what is going to happen once everyone returns to their daily lives. I hope that people can make changes that will help to positively impact the environment.
Oleema: Some may say I am a bit of a control freak (I totally am!) so not having an official time when we will be able to hug our loved ones, cheers in restaurants, or travel to new places has me feeling uneasy.
What have you been watching on TV?
Kalani: Curb Your Enthusiasm, starting at season 1. 90 Day Fiancé.
Oleema: Oh gosh, I am the TV queen. Anything and everything on Bravo – Real Housewives (Beverly Hills and New York), Shahs of Sunset (most random thing I watch but I love it), and my most cherished and favorite show ever – 90 Day Fiancé. It is legit the best show ever to be made!
What have you been eating?
Kalani: I love cooking and have enjoyed trying new recipes! I am on an anti-inflammatory diet, so I have enjoyed trying so many different recipes along with homegrown strawberries!
Oleema: I have always loved cooking and I’ve taken this time to really embrace my love of food, trying new recipes, and using as much local produce as possible. I’ve made the most delicious soups with beautiful organic produce, the yummiest fresh sourdough toast with avocado, micro greens and the sweetest tomatoes, as well as quick and easy salads and bowls full of whatever is left in my fridge.
Have you accomplished anything since self-isolating?
Kalani: I am still doing a full overhaul of my closet. Also doing a deep clean on the house has been good and felt rewarding. My greatest accomplishment at home would be my garden in my backyard. I love going out there first thing every morning and checking out the growth.
Oleema: I love organizing so I already keep a pretty tidy home. However, since we are remodeling, I have been able to accomplish a lot more than I normally would since I’ve been able to be onsite for the last nine weeks every day. We are nearing the end of the remodel, so I’ve been organizing all of my fun purchases I’ve made over the last few years that I’ve been saving for the house and getting them ready to be used.
What music have you been listening to lately?
Kalani: Motown station on Pandora is my favorite! Definitely upbeat and fun. And FaceTime concerts from my boyfriend and his guitar are a must.
Oleema: I love Pandora and one of my favorite stations is “Into the Mystic”. Think Fleetwood Mac, Bob Seger, Van Morrison, Rolling Stones, and Eric Clapton. Also, the hits from Stevie Wonder – I had a full on solo dance party yesterday listening to all of his best songs. So, so good.
How has the experience changed your outlook?
Kalani: I think that it has been a nice break in the action. It has given me a lot of time to reflect, especially since I have been spending so much time by myself.
Oleema: I’ve always been a pretty positive person so maintaining a positive outlook has definitely been hard at times, but I’ve realized the importance, even more than ever, in counting your blessings. Despite the confusing times that seem all encompassing, it is imperative to look around you and to look within and realize how many things there are to be grateful for. I’ve learned the true importance of human connection and how much I really, really love and appreciate my family.
What has been the most surprising thing about this whole experience for you?
Kalani: Although I know that I love being by myself and am a homebody at heart, I am still shocked to find out how this break in travel has helped me realize how much I really enjoy and love staying grounded at home.
Oleema: I’m surprised at how much patience I have, and the fact that I was actually quite calm and able to embrace the situation. I looked back on my calendar from the last day I was out in public and honestly can’t believe how much the time has flown by. I’m doing my best to relish in this time and realize that we will probably look back on this time and realize how it may be a blessing in disguise.