Thursday, March 29, 2012

enjoying the beach

We're trying to get as much beach time as we can these days. So after dinner we headed to "our" beach...the one across from our old house. I always forget how much windier it is at the beach so the girls started turning blue after a while and shivering...and then we knew it was time to go....

and the fact that Lainey was trying to eat up all the sand she could get into her mouth.

If you look at her mouth close enough you can see the sand. Not sure why it tasted so good to her.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

fancy shoes

Ansley loves "fancy shoes" she likes to call them. She would prefer to wear these all day long. These particular ones have glitter on the toes...not sure if you remember my hatred dislike for glitter. I keep finding glitter ALL over the place. But for this little girl, the more sparkle the better.
And then I had to add a picture of our Lainey-Lou. Lately she actually stops and smiles for the camera.

Monday, March 19, 2012

#1 Friends

I've got to say that the most meaningful and what I will miss the most about living in Hawaii is all of our friends that we have met along the way of our 7 years here. When you live so far from everything you know that is familiar, the people that surround you become like family. Some friends have moved away but they are still so very dear to us. These friends of ours have challenged us, helped us in parenting, held us accountable, cried with us (okay really just me), challenged us to be better spouses, loved our kids just as much as we do, they were generous with what they had, they laughed with us, talked story with us, prayed with us, helped deepen our faith, were there through births, birthdays, anniversaries, sicknesses, graduations and through happy and sad times (sounds like a marriage vow). These friendships are not only deep because of Christ as our bond but also because they have walked life with us out here in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. I truly love these different people that God has put in our path. He knew we needed community here to sharpen, grow us and point us to our Savior and I am so thankful that he chose to cross our path with theirs.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

6 years old - may the force be with you...

Jude turned 6 today. His request this year for a theme guessed it Lego's. But not just any Lego's, Star Wars to be specific. 
We started off our day with our traditional pancakes in the shape of the age they are turning...6.
 Then for lunch we loaded up our bikes and headed to the beach park for some beach cruising and lunch...with our fellow homeschooler neighbor/friend.

 Not the greatest picture of us but it's all we got.

 Then for the cake we decided to do cupcakes with Lego figurines and homemade light sabers.
 Jude posing with some of his gifts...a little Lego Yoda.
 A gift from Ethan was homemade light sabers. The boys (and neighbor kids) put those to use right at once and Jude ended up with a bump on his chin and a bruise under his eye. But to a boy, that's just cool battle wounds.
Here is Jude saying what he got for his birthday....he's our little ham.

10 months old

This is getting harder to get her picture these days. New things Lainey can do: stand for approximately 2.3 seconds without holding on to anything, waves bye-bye, is down to two long naps a day (yahoo!!), 6 teeth total now, giggles all the time at her brothers and sister (who knew they were so funny), loves to ride in the stroller (yes it's taken this long for her to enjoy it), says "ma-ma" when she sees me or wants me (not just at random times). This girl is wrapped around all of our fingers and fills our lives with joy. We are so thankful to God for her!

Friday, March 09, 2012

Big Island

This past week the boys and I with my good friend, T, and her daughter, took a trip to the Big Island (another Hawaii bucket list place...Jason went a couple of years ago so he volunteered to stay home with the girls). We had 5 days and 4 nights and we pretty much covered everything we set out to see. 

Day 1 - We started off on the east side of the island in Hilo and took a tour of the Lyman Museum where we learned about the first missionaries to the island back in the 1800's and the work they did. After that we ventured down south to the coast in the Puna district and put our feet in the Ahalanui hot ponds...after reading about bacterial counts in the water we didn't really want to go for a swim. But the water is heated by underground springs that are warmed as they pass through hot rocks (from the magma underground).

We then drove on over and stayed at Kilauea Military Camp in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. That was quite an experience, not only to be at 4,000 feet elevation and have pretty chilly temps (you know for us wimpy mild weather people) but also to be within walking distance to an overlook where you could see glowing lava in the pit crater (Halema' uma' u) of Kilauea at night. Kilauea is the most active volcano on the planet and is something I could talk about for a long time...but I don't want to bore my few readers. I have never seen anything like it and am so glad we were able to take this trip.
Day 2 -We did about a 4 mile crater hike to Kilauea I'ki where a lava lake was created back in 1959. The trail started off in a beautiful forest and ended up on one side of this old "lake". The path went right down the middle and we hiked back up the ridge to the top again and ended in Thurston lava tube. You can see Halema'uma'u steaming in the distance.
My good friend T.
Part of the lava lake. Don't worry those cracks were only created by gas pressure under the surface.
A steam vent right in the middle...too close and it can burn you. All I can say is amazing!
We then drove down Chain of Craters Road where we saw the most amazing landscape. Old lava flows after old lava flows down the the coast where the road ends because of lava covering the road. Amazingly these lava flows reach the coast and dump into the ocean which creates new land.
This is all you could see for miles.
Holei Sea Arch

Day 3- Steam vents...not a forest fire.
Sulfur Banks Trail...sulfur dioxide seeps out of the cracks with ground water steam.
crystals forming on the rocks

Lehua flower which has a great Hawaiian legend about it.
We then left Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and drove up the south coast headed towards Kona. We stopped at a great little coffee farm that makes world renowned Ka'u coffee where I got a bag of John Bull roast. The kids got to crack some macadamia nuts and eat an apple banana for a snack and we got to sample a freshly brewed cup of coffee. Jude and I sampled a coffee berry and then saw what the coffee beans look like before they roast them.
We then headed to Punalu'u black sand beach where sea turtles tend to hang out. We saw a few swimming around but mostly the kiddo's enjoyed playing in this eerie yet beautiful looking sand...and boy does that stuff heat up when the sun comes out. I learned quick that you can't walk on this beach barefoot.

And then to complete our day we did another 5+ mile hike to Papakolea green sand beach (one of two in the world) which starts out on the southern most tip of the United States. We followed jeep trails through pasture lands until we saw this cinder cone formation and then did a short climb down the steep bank to the beach. The olive sand is created from a mineral called olivine which is a semi-precious stone created from volcanic stone.

Day 4 - After all those hikes and driving we were ready to enjoy the resort at Hilton Waikoloa Village. We spent the day swimming, water sliding, snorkeling and resting. We also got to see a whale splashing his tail in the ocean off the coast of the resort.

Day 5 - Our last day there we ventured back into Kona and toured Hulihee Palace, which was a historic vacation home for Hawaiian royalty.
Across the street was the first Christian Church, Mokuaikaua Church, built in the islands in 1820.

We ended our visit at the Kona Brewing company where I had the best fish tacos I have ever had. So many great memories and such amazing scenery!