Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Aloha 2009

It's a wonderful thing to wake up in the morning to the crashing of waves, the smell of salt and this view from your window. There's something about the ocean that is relaxing, refreshing and almost renewing for me. I love the sound. I love the smell. I love when the waves make bubbles all over the sand. The (not yet Annual, but I can always hope) Waterfall Beach Vacation was just what I needed to get my ocean fix.

After a long day of flying, we all pow-wowed in Laie, Hawaii. Well outside of bustling Honolulu, the beach house where we stayed was a perfect retreat for our group of 16. We were right on the beach, down the street from the Temple, BYU-Hawaii and Foodland (where we visited at least twice a day). We were also very close to the Polynesian Culture Center. We spent an entire (HOT!) day there.

My favorite is the canoe parade, though I missed half of it trying to cool Winston down. My mom ended up taking him home after we'd already stripped him of his clothes -- and dignity -- trying to cool off.

Our day at the PCC wrapped up with the night show. At dinner, we were approached by a worker to do a survey/rating program during the show. Our participation would ensure better seats during the show. Some of had to go home to feed babies, so only about half of us would be able to participate. Not to worry. Eric whipped out the Japanese card and, speaking to the worker in her native language, finagled better seats for the whole group, regardless of participation. Eric always manages to swing a deal.

Little Kate was such a trooper. It was so fun to spend time with her. It was a hoot watching her open and close and open and close the stroller shade, then peek out the back to see if you can find her. So, so cute!

And then there's Maria. I think Winston wants to be like her. She is the happiest, most animated, smiliest girl I know. She's hysterical. She has this little cough she does when she's frustrated. She also doesn't like to nap. And she has the biggest, squintiest, stick-your-tongue-out smile. I love it. Upon returning home, Winston developed the fake cough, doesn't love naps as much, and has this squinty, tongue-included smile. Really, I'm not even making this up.

We made the obligatory trip out to Pearl Harbor. Since the Arizona Memorial was sold out for the day, we went through the USS Missouri. It was really cool. The size of the ship compliments the historical events that took place there, including the surrender of Japan from WWII.

Mark confused the Navy for the Army and wore his camouflage tank top. I think the white sunglasses make up for it, though. Nice Mark. Nice.

We went to the Hale I'wa Art Fair, watched turtles at Turtle Beach, snorkeled at Hanauma Bay and jumped from the big rock at Waimea. The rest of the time, we were at the beach at home...or eating. Likely eating Matsumoto's or Angel's shave ice, Ted's pie, Leonard's hot Malasadas, pineapple, or one of the many bags of Chips Ahoy or Oreos. The Beach Bod diet ceased to exist.

And of course, it was W's first time to the beach. I think he actually kind of liked it, or perhaps he was just fascinated by the whole thing. Given the amount of sunscreen, hat and other clothing he wore to the beach, I'm not sure the sun ever touched his skin. But he curled his toes in the sand, got wet from a few waves and managed to have sand in every crevice of his body when we got back home. The beach was a success.

Our flight home didn't leave until late Monday night, so we were able to spend the whole day in Honolulu/Waikiki. We shopped, ate Matsumoto's, shopped and ate some more. Waikiki beach is beautiful. It was so fun to hang out one last day with my parents, Lizzie and Marky. The day was a success: my dad found some new pants, Mark found some new girlfriends (in a matter of seconds. it was incredible), Lizzie got a hot new dress, and Winston was a champ.

Thanks MaMom and Papi for a fun, memorable, relaxing trip. We had a great time and we loved spending time with you. Regardless of where we travel, I'm just happy to have my family along for the ride with me.


Rita said...

I LOVE your family. I hope that I will have a family half as cool.

The Robinson's said...

I am so jealous! Looks like you had a great time. Winston is getting so big. My favorite picture is the one of you two on the beach. So fun!

Christie said...

I can't believe we were there at the same time! It is such a perfect place and I'm so glad you guys had fun, too. When do we all get to go back?

Lizbeth said...

This is so great! Thanks for documenting the trip so well, kate. I miss you and hope to see you very soon! That includes Daveed and Bubba.

Beck n' Ben said...

Man, those were some huge guns on that ship...Dave must be working out ;) welcome back. we miss(ed) you guys. Ben

Megan and Ben said...

Katie- What a great post! Can I just copy and paste it to my blog (esp. since our comp still wont upload photos). You have such a talent for writing and I loved how you described your thoughts of the ocean...took the words right out of my mouth. Oh, I miss you, Dave and little Dub SOO much! Thank you so much for coming to Hawaii. Im so glad we got to spend time together.

Megan and Ben said...

Oh, and the picture of you and Dub on the beach is a keeper. You look beautiful and so peaceful!!! What beatiful mommy you are! I love you so.

melissa said...

what a fun trip! that is so awesome that you can all fly in and go on a vacation together! what a lucky girl you are to spend time with the entire fam like that. winston is soooo cute. i want to meet him! and what can i say? beach, hawaii, family = heaven on earth.

Jamie said...

Your trip looks WONDERFUL! You have me craving some authentic shave ice now!