Friday, August 26, 2011

We are in Hawaii!!!

So finally I am going to post about our trip to Kauai, Hawaii. It was AMAZING!!! One of the very few places and trips I have ever been on that I really did not want to come home. I loved every second of it. And for those of you that know me really well, you know I have traveled quite a bit and have been so lucky to have seen many incredible places. But who doesn't LOVE Hawaii????

Jason, me, Dan, and Janie all flew to Kauai on Easter Sunday last April. We spent a week there on that island and had a blast together. We met Dan and Janie 2 years ago in Ann Arbor, MI when we moved there for Jason's fellowship. Dan was also finishing his fellowship in facial plastics as an E.N.T. doctor. We became great friends right away and will always love the time we get to spend with them!We stayed at the Marriott there in Kauai and it was gorgeous! Our room had balconies with direct views of the ocean. GORGEOUS! We slept each night with the doors open to the outside just to listen to the waves crashing. Loved it. So. Much.

While we were there we did some serious relaxing on the beach. We all read lots of books and sipped on diet coke. Hello, perfect. The beach that was for the hotel was so nice. Very secluded.On our first day there was a pretty big family all there and they had some boogie boards. After they were done with them they told us we could use them. So we decided to do some serious boarding. I FOR REALS almost broke my neck and back. And in the process straddled Dan. The current was freakishly strong and the tip of my board did a nose dive into the sand and I flipped over the top of it. Then the under current went crazy and I was drowning and seizing. (Not really, but I'm sure if anyone saw what was going on they might have thought that was the case). :) So I start trying to crawl back to the shore on my hands and knees, screaming over the waves that I can't move my back and "I can't breathe." Dan comes running to my rescue and the next wave took him down!!!! We both got tangled up in that mess and ending skidding to shore intertwined. Lovely. Sorry Janie. No hard feelings? But I will say, I was catching some pretty big waves. Growing up in San Diego taught me a thing or two. And just so we are clear about the strength of those waves, one day the waves ripped the bottoms of my bathing suit COMPLETELY off of me. Oh yeah, I'm sure I scarred several of the children playing peacefully on the shore. And probably some of the grown men as well. . . Yikes. And Janie's top had some problems staying put as well. Writing about these memories is making me laugh so hard.
We also rented some paddle boards and that was so fun. I was pretty nervous about standing up, but finally did it and loved it. Jason was of course perfect at it. He had a couple of good falls, but he was able to paddle all over and stay up forever. I never fell, but was very cautious. What if there were sharks way out where we were? Actually, I'm sure there were so let's not even talk about it. Freaky. Janie and I had a great time watching our husbands try to get up from the first outing. It's a lot easier than it looks and take some serious balance. Dan? He needs to work on his balance. :) Janie was also a natural.

We drover to the Grand Canyon of Hawaii and it was so beautiful. I couldn't believe that was on the island. There was a man at the top of a lookout while we drove through the Grand Canyon of Hawaii that had a guitar and was serenading people, singing, "This is Hawaii". It was hilarious. :) He was playing his guitar while repeating the same words over and over again. Uh yeah, we know where we are. One day while we were there we woke up at the CRACK of dawn and drove for about 1 hour to the North Shore where we watched the sunrise. It was really one of the most beautiful things I have seen. It happened so fast but really was breathtaking. We had to watch it from the back of the jeep we rented since the boys were in such a hurry to get to the hike. The sunsets were unbelievable too. What the heck with the sun on Hawaii? So, after we saw the sunrise we began our day of MAJOR hiking. I had no idea the hike I was about to participate on. Ummm, try 8 miles. And lots of it was steep and slippery from water falls. And crossing DEADLY rivers with tally marks showing the number of people that have died there from getting stuck in the current. I am a sissy, but Dan kept helping me across the random scary places and we all made it to the water fall. The water there in the mountain was FREEZING so I only put my toes in. Not even my whole foot. Burr. But Dan and Janie got all the way in and swam to where the falls hit the pool. Brave. Jason and I watched and cheered them on. Nice and warm. And then we had to hike back. All any of us wanted was a drink. Like dummies we each brought ONE bottle of water. We had some beef jerky and trail mix. . . and wasabi peas, but that wasn't enough. So out of pure motivation for something refreshing to drink, we did some serious hustling back to the car. It was 4 miles in and 4 miles out. And honestly some of the very prettiest, jaw dropping views I have ever seen. We were on the edge of the cliff, looking directly out to the ocean. We even saw whales right off the shore. I can't even describe how spectacular it was. Totally worth the sweat and pain of the hike. Totally worth it.We ate some delicious food, and not so delicious. One morning we went to a local place for breakfast and I don't actually know how to describe it. But how about this? Barf. Gag.We did get to eat at the Beach House, which is one of the worlds most romantic restaurants. And it was fantastic. We ate right on the water and watched the sunset and people surf. I could seriously get used to this life. Seriously.

One of the excursions we decided to go on was the boating tour. It was on a Navy Seal raft and was so awesome. There were only about 8 of us on the boat and it was all day. There were dolphins literally INCHES from our hands. They were every where. It was so exciting, getting all caught up in the moment. :) We got to snorkel after lunch and Jason and I swam right along side a HUGE turtle. We were both in shock of how huge it was. We saw several sea turtles while we were in the raft, out in the ocean, but swimming next to it was so different. Amazing. While we were out we we so lucky to see the last of the whales before they left for the season. There was a mom, dad and baby. We stayed and watched them for about 30 mins. And the baby was doing every trick it could think of. It was showing off for reals. I couldn't believe how close we got to them. Law says you have to stay at least 30 yards away, unless they approach you. But since we were on this little tiny raft, we didn't let them get any closer. :) It was so fun seeing the whales. The whole experience of the day was fabulous. I love being on the water.
We went to a luau one night and that was so fun. Janie and I just wanted the experience and so the boys of course agreed. TONS of food, and super entertainment. Speaking of, Dan got to go up on stage and do a special hula dance with a few others. I went ahead and volunteered him. I don't think he was thrilled, but did a great job twisting and hulaing. Jason knew better right when the announcer said he was going to get some people from the audience. He got right up and went to get more drinks. Dan didn't know who he was dealing with and sat calmly. So I got him! :) One for my hardest laughs. Dan is such a great sport and can always make everyone laugh. I love that about him.We also did some cliff diving, well almost all of us. Dan wussied out on this. But it was so fun! We all tried so hard to tempt Dan and tell him how much he would regret not jumping and how fun it was and how it was totally NOT scary and he only had to do it once. But he was firm and steadfast. Immovable. That says a lot about that man. :) I jumped within SECONDS of getting there. I had to. Otherwise I think I might have talked myself out of it. Jason was next. He too took a bit of persuasion. Jason made me laugh so hard because he kept getting close to the edge, backing away, and yelling towards me that he "wasn't ready" I stayed over on the other side of the pool of water once I climbed out to take pics of everyone else. He finally jumped and I got the video! Getting out was the hardest part. You had to climb up a mossy, slippery ladder that was attached to the side of a mountain and did not look very secure. I just got the shivers as I wrote about it. It was gross. But the rsuh of jumping was awesome!!! Janie braved up too after SEVERAL minutes and threats of being reay to go. She wanted to jump, but kept getting nervous. Then her honest husband PROMISED he would jump if Janie would. So being the trusting woman Janie is, she took a leap of faith and jump. Dan. . . has no guilt. :)

And that is about it. It proably seems like I was way too extensive in this post, but in truth, there is SO much I didn't put in. Kauai was a trip that I will never forget. Spending a week with Jason, and no kids was heaven sent. And then adding some of our best friends to the mix. . . . bliss!

We can't wait to go back. 2012?????


The Karrens said...

So jealous...we took our kids and my parents when we went to Hawaii...but that looks like even more fun! You look amazing make me sick...I am just getting my baby weight off and he turns 4 next week :)

One Big Happy Family In Utah said...

So behind in posting and keeping up on friends and family ... but looking at the lovely pictures, especially with the cold we're having makes it seem a little warmer. We LOVED Kauai -- After living on and returning to Oahu, and Shawn worked on Maui and hand's down we decided Kauai was the Hawaii you think about when you imagine paradise. We can't wait to return ... someday.