Friday, July 31, 2009

We went to the beach 7 out of the 8 days we were here. We rented snorkel equipment, boogie boards and a surf board for the week. Mark was so excited to teach our kids to surf. I'm happy to say that they both got up!

They all three were in the water alot more than I was. They are stronger swimmers than I am. They would keep dragging me back out though. It gave me plenty of time for beachcombing, my favorite pastime. I happened to meet a very nice (handsome) guy on one of my strolls that asked me if I was having much luck finding shells. I said no and that I was really hoping to find an area where we could see sea turtles. He told me that he had lived on Maui since he was 8 and that he was going to tell me where his secret sea turtle spot was. I couldn't believe my luck. As soon as my family came in, we drove to the beach, swam out and saw 5 very large sea turtles. It was difficult to even stay away from them. They wanted to swim with us. They are endangered and you are not allowed to touch them. We were so excited. Mark and Taylor even saw an octopus. We all got to see the turtles and several tropical fish. I need to get the underwater camera film developed. Can't wait to go back!

The turtles were swimming around these lava rocks.

We celebrated my birthday at The Hula Grill. Location is everything! Of course, the wonderful food, sipping a Blue Hawaiian drink, live island music and fresh leis help.

We also attended the Hyatt's "Drums of the Pacific" luau.
It started to rain as we were seated. I was certain that we would be caught in a storm. The wind was blowing strong and it was definitely sprinkling HARD. My hair was ruined. There went our Christmas card picture, but just when we thought the evening was ruined, it stopped. The show was phenominal. We especially enjoyed the fire dancers.

Of course you can't see us, but somewhere on that stage is my daughter and I taking a hula lesson. Yes, she drug me up there with her, but she fulfilled her promise to me and took a hula lesson.

As we were leaving, one of the dancers was available for photos. Let's just say that I'm happy that my daughter is the one to the left. The dancer's little coconut bikini top is about the size of the one I brought my daughter back from Maui the last time I was here when she was about 4!

We made it, driving of course, 10,000 feet. We drove through upcountry Maui to the top of the Haleakala volcano. We were above the clouds and in the clouds. It's awesome to watch them float by you.

We spotted several of the beloved, endangered Maui nie-nie birds, as well as the silver star plant that only grows on Haleakala.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Maui - Day 1
We arrived in the evening on July 3rd. We were up and ready to leave by 7 am. Those 3 hour time changes kill me. After walking across the street (gotta love that) to the beach exploring tide pools, we began our day at the Maui Swap Meet. A friend of mine is married to a native Hawaiian and she informed me that I "had" to do my big shopping there. We wouldn't have chosen that for our first activity of our first day there, but as luck would have it, the swap meet is only open on Saturdays. We were not disappointed. The flower vendors were fabulous.
The jewelers booths were amazing. My personal favorite! My husband bought me a beautiful Hawaiian Heirloom bangle bracelet. Cole bought Taylor a sterling flip flop necklace and matching earrings which totally stunned me. That's my boy!

When you are in Hawaii, everything seems to be in technicolor. There was a framed print of this flower in our resort suite. It was one of the many that we saw growing at The Tropical Plantation in Maui.
The Tropical Gardens were filled with incredibly lush flowers.

Wish I could grow this blue one in Arizona. Not a chance!

We had a picnic lunch in this charming gazebo.
We moved on to Kaanapali Beach, changed and spent the afternoon at The Hyatt.

I have a tradition of only having a Pina Colada when I'm at a tropical location. We were entertained by a patriotic parasailer.

To end our evening, we celebrated the 4th at an oceanside table at Bubba Gumps, watching the fireworks over the water.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

I'm spending every spare second getting ready for Hawaii!! Let's just say that we are stimulating the economy. Wanna see my dress for the Luai?

Taylor wanted to buy these Betsy Johnson earrings for my birthday. Instead I told her that I would buy them if she would take a hula lesson in Hawaii for me instead. I'm hoping we can find one.

This vintage necklace was my Mother's. She wore it when she was in her twenty's and gave it to me to wear when I was in my twenties. I own and cherish several pieces of her vintage rhinestone jewelry. I wore them when Mark and I used to have fancy, dancy parties to go to when we were newly married and he was the Head Pro at the very exclusive Camelback Country Club. On my list tonight is to rework a necklace to wear with my new dress using a few of the pieces from her necklace. I'm going to make a bracelet as well.
I needed a second nice dress for my birthday dinner. We are celebrating my birthday in Maui at the Hula Grill. My birthday was actually five weeks ago, but we were still in school.
Accessories are everything! Carmen has been helping me get ready. She gave me this darling tote for Christmas to take on our trip and this fun tropical beach bag for my birthday.

I'm taking this straw handbag with tropical flowers. I really get into theme dressing.

I hope you have a great week. Until then, ALOHA!