Say Aloha to Tribe Interview!
This month, we spoke to Andrea Hannemann, perhaps best known as @earthyandy to her 290,000-plus Instagram followers. This beautiful mama, who lives an idyllic lifestyle on the North Shore of Hawaiian island Oahu, is an inspiration to so many people around the globe for her vegan plant-based lifestyle and sunny outlook on life. Andy spoke to Children of the Tribe about living aloha, health, love and travel. She also shared her delicious afternoon snack recipe for beating the witching hour with your tribe - you're welcome!
Who is in your tribe?
My husband Shem and sons Tama, 7, and Ira, 3.
You certainly live an idyllic lifestyle on Oahu's North Shore. What do you love most about your hometown?
I love how ‘alive’ it is! There is constant energy in the air from the ocean and changing skies; it's like living in a live painting. Even the leaves are diverse in size, colour and patterns along with the endless wild flowers and the constant smell of salty sweet plumerias in the air. I just love how simple life is, really. We live across the street from the beach and a bike ride away from everything we need. I love how small it is and the people are always lovely.
Can you share a much-loved, hidden gem on the North Shore that many visitors might not know about?
There is a hike called the Pillbox trail right in the Sunset Beach Elementary School parking lot that gives an amazing view of the whole North Shore.Also, one thing people don't realise is there is a bike path across the whole North Shore and the beaches the entire way are breathtaking so you can always find your piece of secluded beach.
Where is your favourite place to eat on the North Shore?
The food truck, Elephant Thai Truck, has the best food where you can watch the sunset over Sharks Cove under ticket torches and palms and they have good music. Get the Gangsha Vegan Pad Thai - it's insanely delish! At my family’s restaurant Seven Brothers I get a fully loaded Pupukea Greens Salad with local avocado, craisens, mushrooms, cucumbers, carrots with a lilikoi vinaigrette and a squeeze of lemon. The home cut fries are special! Try Haleiwa Bowls for Acai blend that is fully loaded with fresh mango, blueberries, papaya and kiwis.
You follow a vegan plant-based lifestyle. How did changing your diet change your quality of life?
That is a great question! Honestly, as corny as it might sound, it's changed my perspective on life, my outlook, my attitude, my energy and my full-on mood! I suffered from fatigue, brain fog and totally didn't feel in control and that’s not even mentioning the digestive issues that haunted my every day. Now I feel effortlessly free and happy, motivated and driven. I feel I am a better wife, mom and person as a result of getting my health in line and feel more connected to my surroundings. It's been a complete upgrade of life as a result of going plant based!
Your family positively glows with good health! Do you feel health and happiness go hand-in-hand?
It definitely makes it a lot easier. I was always happy but suffering inside. I had to get outside myself to get through the days for my kids and to not be a sap. Inside, I was tired and just felt ill and counted down the hours of the day while I wore a smile hiding how gross I always felt. Now I wake up excited for the day and feel consistently good and 'level.’ Happiness is partially hormonal and I also think when you feel good, you feel like you're doing the right thing and being comfortable in your own skin makes a difference in your confidence and happiness. This is what I have found…
You are a role model for so many women - me included! Are you humbled by the amount of people around the world who look to you for advice and inspiration?
I am SO inspired by all of you! I am so grateful for the kindness, motivation and inspiration that I received when I changed my own health. Having an account that helps uplift others and just shares a health culture and fun recipes and positivity is extremely humbling. I know what it's like to struggle with health and so it really hits home and it is heart warming to feel such good energy from so many wonderful people. I am very grateful to be able to connect and be a friend or a support to anyone who needs it. There are so many inspiring people out there and I think it's so rad that people want to uplift and share the knowledge with each other.
You are an active family. What are your favourite things to do together?
Surf and skateboard, mostly! My kids could stay in the water all day long. We hike and bike ride a lot but more than anything we are in the water. If I could, we would travel all the time too but for normal life, its surf and beach. My kids also play soccer and basketball - basically any sport.
You recently took your kids to Canada. How did they enjoy exploring your home country, which is so different from the tropics!
Everything was so exciting for the kids! There is so much wildlife in Canada and it is so gorgeous that everything we did was an experience. It's a fully different kind of beauty than the tropics. My kids were super excited to have squirrels eat out of their hands and to see all sorts of wildlife when we would go on our daily bike rides or hikes in the mountains. We also enjoyed blankets! The cool crisp air makes snuggling enjoyable instead of a sweaty hot box! Travelling is just so educational and rewarding.
What was the most memorable moment from the trip?
I think one of the most memorable days would have been when we went camping by Waterton and saw all sorts of wildlife. We went boating with their uncle and hiked some pretty amazing mountains, slept outside and stayed up until midnight by the fire. The boys were laughing so hard when the squirrels would come eat out of their hands and a deer came out of the bushes right beside us. They were stoked out of their minds!
Do you have any tips for traveling with your sons?
Whenever we travel, I have the mindset - low expectations while aiming high! Just go with the flow, expect not to do everything you might want and just remember to enjoy it. You don't need to do anything extravagant for kids because it's usually the small things they remember like finding their own berry bush or something unexpected when you’re out on a walk or hike or swim. Another tip would be to keep them nourished. If my kids are jacked up on sugar, they are just not set up for a good day and usually crash and are more fussy and emotional. I really make an effort to have a good base of real food in them when we are out and about so if we want treats, it is more balanced.
Is it true your husband Shem proposed after a week of meeting you?
Ha ha it is very true! It’s crazy to think that was 10 years ago now!
What is the secret to a happy marriage when you are juggling the demands of work, creative pursuits and raising babies?
To remember to put each other first and to know that nothing else matters besides your relationship with each other, which is built on spending time together. Even if it's 10 minutes in the day you can be together, make it count and really try to put each other first. Our life isn't perfect by any means but we are getting better and better at it and it's communication and believing in unconditional love and a life of balance that gets us through the hard times. My husband has worked crazy hours for many years so family balance has always been a challenge but we have found that making time to sit down and eat together when we can and to make memories for our kids together is what makes life full. And you have to laugh at life! Life is crazy so I think we all need to be a little cray and laugh half of the stuff off to get through it!