Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Aloha from Paradise

If I close my eyes, I am still there…..the beach, the waves, the drinks….oh wait I am back home with three crazy kids!  At least I still have the pictures to make me smile!  Chris earned a promotional trip to Hawaii through his new job.  We got a free flight and a free room at the Hilton at Waikiki Beach for 4 nights last summer.  We decided to add onto the trip and stay for a bit longer to really enjoy ourselves.

My parents took care of the kids for 8 long days while we were gone. THANK YOU!!!

I had substitutes lined up at the preschool.

It was an adventure just getting out the door for the trip, but man it was worth it!

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It is amazing how many pictures I choose to take with my phone now!  It is always with you no matter what!  I think I had over 100 photos from my phone on our trip.  My how the times have changed.

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On the third day of our trip we went on a group excursion of whale watching, dolphin sighting, and snorkeling.  This was almost a whole day adventure, and it was one of Chris and I’s most favorite part of our trip.  We LOVED the boat, I got to see whales for the first time in my life, and the snorkeling was alright.  The water was a bit choppy so the swimming was rough and took a lot of energy.  I went out for a long while and then the guide said he saw a reef shark, so I turned my little butt around and headed back to the boat.  I have a pretty scary snorkeling and shark experience from my teen years and I don’t care to repeat it any time soon!

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The boat was gorgeous.  This picture doesn’t do it justice, but the boat was HUGE, the crew was so nice and the views were breathtaking.

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We got to follow along with this school of dolphins called “spinning dolphins.”  They got their name because they like to jump and spin.  We didn’t get to see them jumping because they actually were sleeping.  They get together in groups and get next to another dolphin when they want to sleep.  They turn off the side of their brain closest to the other dolphin while they are sleeping.  Isn’t that amazing?  They were right under the boat though and we got to see them splashing a lot.  There were a few children on our boat including a 4 year old boy.  He was just so excited and happy, it made me miss the kids!

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We went on our trip with Jessica and Wes, our neighbors and friends.  Jessica is the sales rep that earned the trip as well and invited Chris and I along.  Thank you Jessica! 

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Chris and I spent a good part of the morning just sitting on the boat watching the water pass underneath us!

Almost every morning I would go running at a park located down the street from our hotel.  The boardwalk was just breathtaking.  I had to stop every so often to snap pictures.  The running trails were all along the ocean so I would run out to the piers and take it all in.  All of these photos were just snapped on my phone while I was running. 

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The Hilton was located at the end of Waikiki Beach.  From our room on the 28th floor we had views far and wide of the Diamond Head Volcano and the beaches.  One of our favorite parts of the day was watching the whales swim through the bay each afternoon from 5 pm to 7 pm.  We noticed that in the afternoon the bay would be full of sailboats.  It took us a few nights to realize that all of the little spouts of water were the whales blowing.  It was mesmerizing!  We got to see some of the whales jump and crash down which apparently is very unusual.  There were some afternoons we would see between six to eight whales swimming around. 

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I hope to sort through more of our pictures this week and share them soon!  It has been jarring getting back to reality this week with school, children, and of course Chris had to travel for work until Friday.  Solo mama!  Love, Clare