Thursday, December 31, 2009

Christmas Morning

It was so nice to have family here for Christmas this year. We didn't go all out for presents but kept it pretty simple. (As I write this and look at the pictures, it looks like a lot. Keep in mind though, this is for 11 adults and 3 children.) Usually Santa will bring the kids one big present each. Santa had wanted to get them something pretty spectacular, but since he waited too long, this item was sold out around the island. Corynn and Dallin were pretty happy with the Legos that he brought instead.My mom had given the kids a book about the birth of Christ, which I thought was the perfect way to start the morning. Grateful kids are the BEST!Santa also brought everyone who was visiting Hawaii a flip-flop stocking filled with some island souvenirs. Masen didn't really get into Christmas that much. He had more fun eating the wrapping paper and crawling in the boxes than he did with his new little toys. The real gift this season was having our loved ones here with us. When we first moved here to Hawaii, people used to ask me what it was like living in Paradise. I admit, there are a lot of good things about living in Hawaii, but without family, it can never be MY Paradise. With everyone here for Christmas, it was as close to Heaven as you can get. Now we just need Chris' whole side of the family here. Hint, hint!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Holidays '09

This year my WHOLE family decided to have a Hawaiian holiday. The week before Christmas they started rolling in. The first wave was Kris, Serena, and Jeff. We drove them straight from the airport to Ko'Olina to catch the sunset. They got in 3 days before anyone else, so they had a head start on all the fun.Their first day here they decided to go on an 8 mile hike. I dropped them off on one side of the mountain, then they called me when they reached the other side. They said it was fun. I'll take their word for it :)
The next day we all went to Waimea Bay. I was sure to check the surf report, because this is the same spot they had the Eddie just a few weeks before with 50 ft. waves. They were only 5-10, but still, a 10 ft. wave will knock you flat. The life guards wouldn't let the kids go very far out. They decided to make their own snowman out of sand. I thought it was cute!On day three, Chris took them to Hanauma Bay to do some snorkeling. They had such a blast, they all went back again when the rest of the family arrived a few days later. They especially had fun looking for the state fish humuhumunukunukuapua'a. I just love to say the name :)Before going to the PCC some of us visited BYU Hawaii, the Hawaii Laie Temple, and Visitor's Center. The temple is currently closed and under renovation, but the grounds are beautiful, and the visitor's center was nice.This is called Laie Point. It's a beautiful natural arch formed by waves just a little off the coast. I had heard of it before, but didn't know where it was. I wandered around Laie until I found it. It was worth the wandering.Here are just a few pictures of the Luau at the PCC. I'm sorry I don't have any pictures of the whole gang. Once EVERYONE got here they all had their cameras out. I didn't bring my camera since I had enough to worry about with a diaper bag and baby, and figured I would get copies of all the pictures from everyone. I'm still waiting...uhum. Can you tell I only had copies of Kris and Serena's pictures? That might explain why they are in almost every picture! The rest of our adventures include the Dole Plantation, swimming with turtles at Paradise Cove, professional family pictures taken, the International Marketplace, shopping, dining and swimming at Waikiki, and much, much more.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Now THIS is Paradise

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Whoa dude...check out the gnarly waves!

Please excuse the surf slang. I couldn't resist. Yesterday after the kids got home from school, I decided to take them up to the North Shore to see the huge waves that we have been hearing about on the news. They were having the Eddie Aikau Surf Competition at Waimea Bay, and although I knew we would miss the action, we still wanted to see the 30-50 foot waves that had been predicted. The largest in 40 years! We stopped at Chris' work on the way up to see if he wanted to join us. He was a little worried about the traffic, and yes it was horrible. We finally got out and walked about a half mile away from the beach when we figured we could beat the snail's pace of traffic on foot. We were not disappointed. These pictures don't do justice to the size of these massive waves. It was incredible, not only to see the waves, but to hear them crash, and see all the mist in the air they created. There was so much foam, Corynn said that the ocean looked like milk.
Although the competition was over (congratulations to Greg Long) surfers were still out there enjoying the swells. Every once in a while one would ride in to the applause of hundreds (or maybe thousands) of people cheering for them.
I am amazed at nature's beauty. I am in awe of those surfers who can harness the power of these waves, and look so elegant doing it.