Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hawaii 2009

*Disclaimer* This post comes with a WARNING: It's suuupperrr looonnnggg!! So sit back, grab a cup of coffee and head to Hawaii with me:) hahaha
Where do I begin?!?!
Those are only some of the words to sum up my trip to Hawaii...It was all of the above plus more and pictures don't do justice...I'm just going to try:-) I hope this doesn't bore you but only gives you a glimpse of how amazing GOD is...I would love to know what GOD was thinking when he created these awesome places simply for us to enjoy! :)
The highlight of Day 1 was simply...
Arriving in Honolulu and getting off the plane after a total of 10 hours on a plane...It was weird to finally be able to turn my cell phone back on and I felt like I was connected to the world once again. With a five hour difference we arrived in Honolulu around 2:15pm so we still had half a day to explore, yet we were worn out!!!
After a good nights rest we hit DAY 2 exploring Waikiki Beach at 5:30am! Yes that's a.m. in the morning...our body clocks were out of wack!
Then we headed off to Pearl Harbor...This was an awesome experience and a sobering experience. I speak for myself here {too many times I take my freedom for granted...I thank those who serve and have served our country to fight for our freedoms}.
Then we took off to the "Northshore" which is the north side of Oahu...this is where the cool surfer dudes go in the winter to hit the 40 feet waves...that's serious stuff:) We didn't go to surf though...we hit the famous Matsumatos Shaved Ice!
Then we came up on the Dole Plantation...pineapples everywhere! Fun stuff:)
As we planned the night before for DAY 3 we decided to get up EARLY to go snorkeling in Hanauma Bay Nature Park. This was absolutely breath taking! We were one of the first to get to the park, because we were told to go early because they only let so many in at a time...we got there early and as the saying goes "the early bird gets the worm"...we got in free, by passed the 30-minute information movie and got to see amazing sea creatures before the water was stirred up! PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket
After snorkeling we decided to take it easy and explore a bit of Waikiki and relax:)
After a yummy supper...a great walk on the beach...then a beautiful sunset, the day was complete:)
Day 4 started out with a bang:) We hit the Aloha Stadium flea market to find some treasures:)
Lots of "stuff"...lots of bargains...lots of fun...
After wandering around for a bit we headed off to drive the outskirts of the island...absolutely an incredible day! We brought along a picnic lunch because we knew we would find a park on the side of the road somewhere! Sure enough we turned a corner and saw an amazing site! It's called the China mens hat.
So needless to say our picnic lunch was not really an "ordinary" picnic in our every day lives!
So we jumped back in the car and rounded the next corner only to come up on this....
We saw this amazing...God created creation!
Then as we turned the corner up the road we stopped at a local road side stand...fresh pineapple, coconut and handmade bags and was neat to be able to talk to the locals!
The next stop was a beautiful beach...
As we walked up to the beach we were greeted by these humongous turtles! You know the kind you only see in the aquarium behind 10 feet of glass...well these were right beside us! Incredible!
As you're driving one mile will be a beautiful beach...the next mile you might be going through a mountain...the next through a lush green looking jungle...then you'll see acres and acres of pineapples, coffee and macadamia nuts...Amazing
Our day ended with a HUGE pineapple split...and yes we shared this and still didn't eat it all!!! :)

Day 4 wrapped our our time on the island of Oahu and Day 5 saw us off to the island of Lanai where my dad's work reward trip brag a minute on my dad because he won this trip because he was number 1 in the nation in his sales division...pretty sweet!!!...I have to just stop for a second and say "Congratulations Dad to a job well done! You deserved this trip hands down!!!! and Thank you for letting me come along:)".
The crop duster landed us on Lanai only to see a totally different terrain.
We thought we had landed on a ranch in Texas! We soon figured it out as we got to the resort and we walked off of the shuttle with leis and seeing friends! Photobucket
The resort grounds were absolutely amazing! PhotobucketPhotobucket
Four Seasons Resort on Manele Bay knows how to make your stay relaxing and enjoyable!! If you stepped out on our hotel room porch you saw the most beautiful view...a private beach for the resort at Manele Bay. Here you could snorkel til your heart was content:) It was a wildlife protected coral reef and amazing I mean amazing fish swimming everywhere!
You couldn't help but think you were dreaming:)
Day 6 was relaxing on the beach and exploring a bit around the property...and hiking around the corner from the hotel...Photobucket this is what we saw!!!
Photobucket Just a local man getting his daily walk in...Photobucket


Day 7 my parents headed out on a jeep tour, touring the island! I handed them the camera and I have to say I was proud of them! They took pictures and they are great! They got to see sights on the island through a 4 wheel drive bumpy ride! PhotobucketPhotobucket
As they toured I soaked up the sun by the pool and beach:) Life is rough:)
Afterwards we headed into Lanai City to see the sights and eat some yummy food at a local cafe.
Moving right along to Day 8...was pretty much a recap of the day dad went deep sea fishing, catching nothing but sun rays:) and of course having fun! My mom and I relaxed by the beach and pool soaking up the sun! For lunch we headed into the quaint and eclectic Lanai city for pizza:) We wanted some yummy down to earth, normal food:) Photobucket
On Tuesday I met one of the locals that worked for the resort driving the shuttle around. I caught the shuttle to head up to the golf course to take some sunset pictures because someone told me it was amazing...I get up there and well the sun sets on the OTHER side of the mountain...yeh so anyway some good pictures just not of the "amazing" sunset! :) Anyway back to my story, the local mentioned his "pastor" so I asked him where he went to church and he told me First Baptist of Lanai so we decided to head over there and visit for their Wednesday night Bible Study. It was neat to meet the church folks and the couple that is serving as pastor have a wonderful work going with the local children and their families!
On day number 9 we hopped on the ferry to head over Maui.
The ferry ride was about 45 minutes long from island to island. Once we got to Maui we had about 4 hours to explore and we were pretty much in the "tourist trap". We like to get away from that personally but we didn't have enough time to so we just walked around and explored what we could. I hear Maui is pretty amazing itself! Photobucket
We got lunch and ice cream:) which are two things that make me happy!!!
We headed back to Lanai mid afternoon because my parents had to get ready for a Luau. Which was pretty neat, I was able to watch from a "distance" and the kids were too amazing! I had to sneak a picture with them!! Even though I wasn't supposed to be there since it was "work" related for my dad! haha
As we got ready to leave on Day 10 we had a loooonng day ahead of us! We woke up at 5:30am (Hawaii time:) ) Got our luggage ready for the hotel to come pick up, ate breakfast and took a few last pictures! PhotobucketPhotobucket
The airport was bitty bitty! Kind of neat in a way! We caught that flight over to Honolulu to have a 5 hour lay over...basically long enough to eat lunch, browse in the stores and watch the sights! Once we got on the plane and braced ourselves for the 9 hour flight to Atlanta. We push away from the boarding gate get on the runway and the pilot says "We are going back to the gate because the third engine didn't start so we are going to have that checked out"...GREAT! So we sat at the terminal for 2 hours...on the plane...while they fixed the engine. Thankfully it started up once they fixed it and we were off to the already long flight turned into 11 hours on the plane, yes I was about to go stir crazy! We got to Atlanta and ran to our next flight into Gulfport, thankfully we didn't miss it and we were HOME! Safe and sound...
There's nothing like home!!!!
Sorry for the post being soooooooo super long so without further a due
watch out for some fun and amazing shoots from this weekend coming up!


Matthew (McFarnell) said...

Looks and sounds like you all had a great trip! Thanks for sharing all the pics.

OnlyByHisGrace said...

Beautiful pictures, Erin. Loved exploring Hawaii with you. :) I have never looks amazing. God's splendor displayed everywhere!
Thanks for sharing.