Saturday, January 29, 2011

Iao Needle, Botanic Gardens, Lanai and our last day

One of our days in Maui we visited Iao State Park and a private botanic garden on the road to the state park. It was gorgeous, as is everything in Hawaii. First, I am going to bore you with a bunch of pictures of flowers and fruit....but coming from a semi-arid, land-locked, full-on-in-winter state, I just can't help myself.

The pointy mountain (hill, if you're from Colorado) is Iao needle. Such bloody battles fought in such a lush, peaceful area - maybe they didn't get what a mellow relaxing place they were living. I certainly never felt like fighting while we were there.

We had lunch at some indi-pizza place and ordered half our pizza "Hawaiian". Why yes, we did think we were clever.


We did a snorkeling excursion to Lanai, although the water was too rough to snorkel there, we ended up back in Maui for that. We were able to spend some time at the tidal pools though and saw an octopus and other neat looking sea creatures.

If you look really closely you can make out one of the octopuses tentacles.
Our last day
We just hung out at the hotel on our last day, Isaac and I at the pool and Jake and Jason Kayaking in the ocean. We barbecued shish-kabobs at the poolside grill that night and watched our last Hawaiian sunset. It really was such a fantastic vacation that had the added blessing of watching Jason's cousin getting married and visiting with his aunt and uncle.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Rehersal Dinner and Wedding

The Wedding

Emily had her Wedding at a Plantation just south of Lahaina. Since my passion, okay, obsession, is decorating, my first picture is not of the actual wedding but the darling way they decorated the house (we spent no time in there, everything took place outside....but still -- how perfectly beachy cottagey can you get!).

Isaac and one of the bride's maids dancing. I asked if he thought she was pretty (because, uh yeah, all Em's brides maids were adorable), he says, "I don't know mom, I was looking at her feet" -- future engineer perhaps?

The view was so beautiful; you could even see humpback whales in the distance. Absolutely a perfect setting for a wedding.

How great would this be if it were your back yard.

Mike and Emily

Emily and her dad (Uncle Bob).

wedding party

Rehearsal Dinner

Uncle Bob and Aunt Laura Jane (LJ)

How could we not be smiling? Emily's getting married, we're in Hawaii, Freakin great views, we're in Hawaii.

LJ and her very good friend Erika.

Never really got that perfect sunset picture... but this one isn't bad.

my cuties

Em and uncle Bob.

Jim and Erika, Erika officiated the wedding.
Okay, I still have loads more pictures to share, will try to get them all blogged shortly, getting back to reality has been, well a chore. Particularly after 11 hours on a plane with an eight and eleven year old...both bored, both annoying. Not to mention I needed to make and emergency trip to the doc because of a horrible rash on my arms and legs. I am allergic to the sun, how much does that suck? Now on steroids and benedryl. Still, it was all worth it, I'd do it again (but with SPF 1,000 and long sleeved shirts).

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Why I haven't been blogging....

The past few days have been a whirlwind of activities, the rehearsal dinner, the wedding (GOR-GEEE-OUSE!), a snorkeling trip to Lanai'i, a trip to Iao needle and hanging out at the pool, I've had very little time to blog. Well okay, I've managed to read five (FIVE) books on this trip...the first two I mentioned a couple blog posts ago (Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet ---awesome! and Mennonite in a Little Black Dress -- refreshing, smart and funny); the following are the three other books I've managed to gorge myself on....seriously, thinking I may not go back to school and just spend my free time reading I miss that!

Would probably not spend the time...laugh out loud in a couple of spots, interesting how she was able to keep her faith and her ideals alive in NYC, but also a little preachy in areas...Mennonite in a Black Dress a funnier look at those from strict religions navigating the modern and less 'restrictive' world where people more often question the decisions of those who have strict rules attached to their faith.
Wow...a voyeuristic look into a seriously sick (in so many ways) family...if you want to feel better about your own mothering skills a good one to read. It's the child's perspective of living with a mother who has Munchhausen by Proxy.

Wuthering Heights with a happier ending; lots of tragic characters, but no one digging up dead bodies to hold their decaying loved ones (I know, I KNOW, I suck as and English major --- tragic love is one thing, but seriously those Bronte sisters are seriously over the top gothic-strange)
Can I say, how much I love (LOVE) my Nook? I finish a book and then browse until I see something that catches my fancy. I have my wish list and based on what I've purchased Barnes and Noble will suggest other books I may like. Each book has a section for customer reviews. For the plane ride home I've downloaded, Bitter is the New Black (need something funny after Reliable Wife) and Never Tell a Lie, a mystery.
I miss reading for fun.
We leave tomorrow and I will slowly add more pictures of our wonderful trip. But before that I'm going to indulge a bit more and read, read, read...the real world will soon rear its demanding head!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Day 3 & 4 Snuba, Luau, Lavender farm and volcano

What have we been doing these past couple days? Well they were fun-filled packed days! I am loving this vacation! We will so come back some day. First off, this is my new favorite candy. We've been buying it at a fruit stand on the side of the road (I'm hoping that's okay, it's packaged...oh who cares, it's that good).

Yesterday we went to Haleakla Crater. It's a dormant volcano and is about 10,000 feet high. Take a jacket (I didn't and I'm an idiot). If it's 70 degrees Fahrenheit on the beach it'll be about 35 on top of the crater. It's pretty cool, so barren, just black and red sand, looks like Mars.

My son, the goof ball.

Driving through a cloud on our way back looks like mist so I thought I'd be specific on my blog, this is a cloud. We did see a haziness settle down over the valley when we were up high and were told that that was vog , a kind of sulfuric-volcanic 'fog' that gives people serious sinus issues (and there were a lot of people with stuffed up noses). But this is a cloud.

Why I needed to stop the jeep and take pictures of random cows, I do not know. This guy was totally giving me the stink eye! I have refrained from adding pictures of the random chickens that I took pictures of...but they were pretty cute too.

Almost feels like we're back in Colorado.

Picture doesn't do it justice. But it was pretty cool (and have I mentioned, freakin' cold!). Definitely worth the drive and ten dollar fee for the National Park.

So, Uncle Bob rode his bike up the volcano. We passed him going up (and coming back down). Go Uncle Bob!

At the Lavender Farm on the way up, after our tour (and why yes, I did pick that excursion, why do you ask?) we had lavender scone and lavender lemonade, both were quite yummy.

Ali Kula Lavender Farm A completely relaxing, serene and beautiful place. The guide, Christy was knowledgeable and friendly. Makes me want to chuck it all and become a lavender farmer, maybe run a bed and breakfast....

Day Three. We ended it with the Luau at Black Rock Oh my gosh, what a show! They have activities for the guests, like how to crack a coconut, throw a spear and tie up a sarong. Then you watch a diver light the tiki torches on black rock and do a graceful dive into the ocean. Afterwards you see the pig being taken from the pit and dinner and a show. The dancing was great, my favorite was the fire dancing.

Hula lessons for Isaac and Jason (Jake and I are better at cheering then performing)

Jake, trying out the spear throwing game. I think it was safe.

oh yeah, that was really hard on Jason....

ooooh, lots of comments from people on the matching Hawaiin shirts...whatever, it builds character...and I'm pretty sure, my days of dictating matching outfits are soon to be over.

The boys tried snuba (they're too young for scuba right now) and loved it.

The last two days were jam packed. Today we're going to play at the beach and hang with the family at the rehearsal dinner. Looking forward to it.