Friday, September 26, 2014

Hawaii Family Vacation - Day 3 & 4

(Written by Aaron) Day 3 was a great day. We got up and headed over to the north shore (about a 45 minute drive). Our first stop was to snorkel at one of the beaches there. It was known for having turtles so we were hopeful. Hayden was all over snorkeling but Paxton & Emmie couldn't get it figured out and ended up not snorkeling. We were fortunate enough to see a large male turtle that got really close to everyone (we had to keep moving because by law we are only supposed to be 6 feet away and he kept swimming by people). We also saw a smaller turtle too. After snorkeling we headed to a great burger place recommended by a friend and feasted on some really good burgers. We then headed over to Waimea Bay because we read they have a large rocky area that people can jump off of into the ocean. Hayden was actually brave enough to jump off it and did so 3 times (I think my heart skipped a beat each time). We all just swam here and enjoyed the water. After swimming we headed to an awesome shaved ice place that everyone raves about ("it's the best in the world" or "it's where shaved ice originated"). It was really good. So good that Tami and I each got 2. The price is so good that for the 7 larges that we got (1 with ice cream at the bottom) we only spend $20. Needless to say that after all this we were exhausted. We came back to the hotel and showered, getting all the sand out of crevices we forgot we had. But we weren't done for the night. Our hotel had a mini-presentation (a mini-luau w/o the food) where some people danced hula and other Hawaiian dances. After that they had the kids dance and party Disney style. The characters came out for a couple of those dances. I wish they would have stayed out longer than 2 dances that they did but I don't have a say. We then went to dinner at a Hawaiian chain called Zippy's. Not great food but well worth every dime we paid. The kids fell asleep on the way there so by the time we were done eating they were out. Tomorrow is an open day. We don't have much planned so we'll see what we end up doing.



Hayden got obsessed with coconuts here. He kept saying he wanted to climb a tree and pick one. While stopping for lunch he found this tree and tried to climb it. This is how far he got. 

 The kids found baby coconuts that already fell from the tree

I still can't believe Hayden jumped. He's so brave!

Taking a bath (playing) in the jacuzzi tub

Pre-show activities at Starlit Hui

Hayden made this boutique for me...It's so pretty!

Starlit Hui 

Day 4 - we didn't have anything planned before waking up but had a great day nonetheless. We started by taking a small hike to the end of the cove by our hotel (just on the other side of the Marriott). We heard it was a good place to possibly see turtles. We had to climb over a few rocks to get to the ocean but it was well worth it. There we saw crabs crawling all over the rocks. In the ocean we could see fish swimming everywhere and we got lucky and did see one turtle pop his head up and decide to pay us a visit. On the way back to the room we dropped the kids off at the play house for a couple of hours so they could play and we could relax and figure out what we were going to do the rest of the day. We decided we would first go to the beach and then swim at the pools/water features at our hotel. At the beach we "rented" (our hotel lets those who stay here use them for free) a couple boogie boards as well as sand toys. Hayden & Emmie loved the boogie boards and were all over the cove on them. Paxton played a little in the ocean but ended up playing with a kid digging a hole on the beach. When done we went and played in the lazy river and went down the water slide a couple of times on our tubes. When we were done, we came back to the room where we changed and got ready for dinner. We decided we wanted the kids to experience Waikiki at night so we drove to Waikiki (about a 50 minute drive). We ate dinner at the Top of Waikiki restaurant. The same restaurant Tami and I ate at almost 14 years ago on our honeymoon. After dinner we walked around Waikiki and showed the kids some of the places we went when we were on our honeymoon. The crazy thing is that a lot of the places we went were gone. Our hotel (Miramar at Waikiki) is gone. The International Marketplace is gone. The Denny's we ate at (which was part of the hotel) was gone. But we were able to show the kids where they were. We haven't eaten any breakfasts at any restaurants to the kids haven't had a chance to experience things like fresh pineapple or POG juice. We will be doing a character breakfast later this week so we will save most of that for then but we couldn't put off POG juice any longer. I got a POG shaved ice yesterday and the kids loved it so I knew it was time. While we were walking around tonight we stopped in at the same little grocery store we stopped at on our honeymoon and bought a half gallon of POG juice (for those who don't know POG is Passion, Orange and Guava juice mixed...very yummy). I can't wait until we wake up tomorrow morning and get to have some. Once done we decided we would go to Leonard's Bakery a few miles away since we have heard good things about it. We tried the Malasadas and they were as good as they were supposed to be. A pretty good day considering nothing was originally planned. Tomorrow is Hanauma Bay and the Swap Meet.

I found this fun climbing tree so decided to grab some photos of the kids sitting in it

View of our hotel

The kids went to Aunty's before swimming and got to meet Chip and Dale

 Playing at the beach in front of our hotel

Picture taken in the ocean in front of our resort by our GoPro

Paxton trying to keep the ocean water in the hole they dug

In the lazy river after the ocean

That night we went to Waikiki

Before we left Waikiki we had to make one more stop... I got Malasadas! Had to give them a try at Leonard's Bakery.