Hawaii - part 1

 October 11-19th
Remember when we missed our flight to Guatemala last year? Well, we had to use our airline credits by October 19th, so the kids and I (Adam didn't have enough vacation days left to join us) decided to go see uncle Kip and aunt Ali in Hawaii.  I asked my parents to come along, and they obliged.  They celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary while we were there.  I was a tad bit nervous flying with the 3 kids by myself (although I knew it would be MUCH easier than when I did it a few years ago), but they did great.  We got to Kona around 9 pm and made it to our hotel around 10.  We got in about 40 minutes early, so the kids climbed the trees and ran around like crazies while we waited for our ride.  The kids barged into grandma and grandpa's room immediately to say hello. 
This little gecko was stuck to Noah's shirt for who knows how long.

 After a few hours of sleep (the kids were up at 5:30 am), we headed to the beach. 
 My mom showed them how to dig for sand crabs.
 Love how she ended up digging by herself.  :)
 Our hotel, The Mauna Lani, was about 20 minutes north of Kona.  It was really nice and had tons of trails and ponds full of fish.  The ponds were actually old fishing ponds the Hawaiians used long ago.  Really could have stayed there, and not gotten bored, the whole time.  Found these huge snails on our hike around the property.
 Puffer fish in one of the ponds.  We left grandpa back at the beach with his "huge book" (according to my mom). 
 Koi ponds at the entrance to the hotel.  As soon as you lean over they swarm over and you can actually pet them.

My mom was successful at un-burrying a crab.  They're so cute and tiny.
 The kids wanted to do EVERYTHING all at once.  We got a kayak, but then they wanted to snorkel, then they wanted to boogie board........
 There was a big shallow area at the hotel that was really calm and perfect for letting them do whatever they wanted. 
 All the kids really loved snorkeling.  Noah and I went out for awhile and saw some cool fish, coral and his spotted eel. 

Snorkel boards
 My view from covered beach lounges.

 This is the point when I SHOULD have re-sun screened.  I didn't, hence the horrible burns we all got the first day. 
 Noah spent a lot of time with his head in the water.
 Testing out the pool for awhile.  Grandpa working on vacation, and getting into the pool as much as he usually does. Little did he know, this would be the last day he would be able to work from Hawaii.  Kip and Ali had the day off, so they played around the hotel with us.
 We had a late lunch, early dinner, in Waimea (really yummy hamburger place).  Explored a little in Waimea and then came back to the hotel to watch the sunset and swim some more.
 Proof I got to relax and enjoy the sunset too.
 These guys could have kept going, but I no longer could see them in the ocean, so I made them move to the pool.

 Someone stole my camera. :)
We swam and listened to some singers by the pool, until I was exhausted (I wasn't even the one swimming), and then I ended the party and made the kids go to bed.  
Our sleeping arrangements.  One in bed with me, one on the roll-away, and one on the couch-turned-bed. 
Grandpa did come in and tell them a bedtime story first (his infamous 'great-grandpa ALWAYS opened the door for great-grandma and treated her like a princess' story). 
 Took a golf cart to a little coffee shop for breakfast, then right back to swimming.
 Grandpa had just finished a work call and was coming over to talk to us by the pool.  He decided to walk over and sit on the edge of the pool, and then all of a sudden (we honestly have no idea how it happened), grandpa was in the water!!  He fell in the pool with his wallet and cell phone in his pocket.  It ended up being a blessing in disguise, because he was forced to not work the rest of the trip.  His phone was dead!
 He was a good sport about it and didn't let it ruin the rest of the trip.  Mom looks a little extra happy about it.   :)
 Noah commandeered my camera.  The next 5 pictures are Noah's.

 Who is this homely little girl?
 We went to the activity room and made some shell necklaces and key chains.

Ava stayed in the room with grandpa to watch cartoons.  I made her a bracelet.
 Kip had been telling the kids about his tree house, and that's ALL they could talk about.  They wanted to go see it so bad.  After Kip got off of work, he took us to see his tree house.  It's back towards Kona, which is hot, but as we climbed the mountain it dropped by at least 20 degrees in 10 minutes.   The van couldn't go the last little ways because the road is pretty bad.  We piled in the back of his truck for the rest of the way.  The kids thought they were pretty cool.
 I thought his house was just on stilts, that's why he called it the tree house, but it LITERALLY is a tree house.

 His view from the balcony - top of the trees.
 It is such a cool place to live. 
 His kitchen

 Bathroom and kitchen sink

 Mom snooping around and checking out all Kip's fun little treasures.
 We asked him what he does up there, since it's very secluded and quiet.  He said he shoots things, so of course the kids needed to try it.

 The kids thought his toilet was the coolest thing, because you pull a chain to flush the toilet and there are no windows.
 Cooking materials - I think he eats out a lot when he's at the tree house (he lives there during the week for work and then goes to his other house in volcano).

 Kip took us on a hike to see some lava tubes by his house.
 Cool spiral fern about to bloom.
 The party shack - I want everything in this place.  Awesome ice box, old stove, butcher block, sink....  The owners still use this place for parties.

 Kip was a good sport to entertain us, but I know how hard it is to be around 3 kids when you're not used to it.  My kids were in heaven though and followed him around like little puppies.
 Supposedly these are invasive weeds in Hawaii, but look how pretty they are.
 They turn into this.
 Getting hard hats for the lava tube.  This garage/bar is full of amazing cool old things. 

 Ready to explore.

 Kip and Ali said that the most dangerous thing on this island is your footing.  There are lava tubes all over and many of them are hidden.  Even on our little hike to the lava tube, we saw random holes that were barely visible, and they could go down a hundred feet or more.

 Can't remember what Kip called this 'gold' stuff on the walls, but had something to do with it being one of the first organisms ever.?  I'll have to ask him the facts again.  He said scientist come from all over to research these tubes.
 The tube had a 'shelf' along one side where they believe ancient Hawaiians used it for sacrificial stuff.
 Kip's water line runs through the middle of this tube.  Ha. Seems a little unstable to me. 
Kip's tree house will definitely be something the kids and I won't forget. 

 Had dinner in Kona by the ocean.  Super yummy fish tacos.  Ava enjoying the entertainment.  Went back to the hotel and crashed. 

1 comment:

mammasweet said...

Well, okay then. Now I know that Rob and I will go to Hawaii on our 40th wedding anniversary. It looks even more interesting than Guatemala did last year. We're getting pretty anxious to see you and give you a squeeze.