Wednesday, April 9, 2008

A Weekend to Love

Right before going home to NC for a visit, I had the most wonderful weekend. My good friend Marybeth is also an army spouse. Her husband Bryan works with Mike. He was a part of the first wave of soldiers to come home for RR. While Bryan was home they rented a cabin on the west side of the Island at one of our favorite military rec spots--Pililau (pronounced: Pee-Lee-Lau). The military owns the land and there are cabins for rent right on a lagoon. The best part of this place, minus the relaxed, slow-paced atmosphere and the killer sunsets is that this is where tourists pay money to come to swim with the dolphins. In kayaking distance, and even swimming distance if you are pretty good--you can come into contact with huge pods of dolphins playing in the lagoon from anywhere to an hour to all morning long. This weekend in particular was amazing! The dolphins came out every day, and stayed for 4-5 hours. They came very close to shore and were extremely playful. We literally spent a few hours out in the middle of the lagoon swimming with the dolphins--for free. You could stick your head under water and hear the high pitched squeals of the dolphins long before you could see them. As the squeals got louder and louder you knew they were coming closer to you. It was so exhilarating to be in the wild with the huge animals--just swimming with them.

After such an awesome Saturday, i know you think it would be hard to top it on Sunday, but really Sunday was beautiful and relaxing and the very essence of what I love so much about Hawaii. After church Carrie, Hillary, Renee and I went to the North Shore for some beaching. We went to a small secluded cove that was so beautiful and maybe even my new favorite beach to go to. It had awesome trees and calm waters that were inhabited by many sea turtles. This beach is actually not far from where the beach camp scenes of LOST are filmed.

As tradition states, after all North Shore beach experiences, we must go to Matsumoto's Shave Ice. Although there has been much debate on the best shave ice in town, there is no denying that Matsumoto's has the largest selection...and I absolutely love their coconut cream and banana cream. Matsumoto's is by far the most well-known shave ice establishment and a definite tourist trap--but for that wonderful coconut banana cream flavor, i would just about suffer through any long line! Funny, in all the times of going here this is our first picture together. And if your wondering, Hillary just doesn't like Shave Ice and if you ask me, i am just not sure she is human.

As if things couldn't get any better, Carrie, Hill and I had our first bible study on Wailua Beach to the beautiful setting sun, where we were graced with sporadic breaching whales way out in the water. God's creation is so beautiful--and living in Hawaii is a wonderful reminder of that. We often play with the idea of getting rid of all our houses and all moving in together in a beach house on this very beach. There really isn't anywhere more beautiful...just take a look.

...and top all of that off with some Thai food from Haleiwa Eats.... what's not to love about this perfect weekend?

Monday, April 7, 2008

There went Peter Cottontail

Geez, there the weeks go flying by again! I have some serious catching up to do--Easter was like 3 weeks ago now! I don't know how I always manage to do this, but Easter weekend was as chaotic as it was fun, and i seriously needed a vacation from my holiday!

I actually had my first pampered chef show on that Saturday, hosted by Hillary. It turned out to be a good show, especially considering it was my first--but with Hillary and I both having a busy work/school/church week, we were definitely doing everything last minute and it was pretty hectic.

After the show, all of us girls spent the evening together eating yummy leftovers and dyeing Easter Eggs with Alexandria. (and maybe for Carrie too-- She was all excited about those camouflage eggs!) Hillary and I then had to get prepared for children's church the next morning, because the weekend had been so busy we hadn't even had time to prepare--we aren't usually QUITE that bad about procrastinating.

The next morning it was up at 3:30 am for sunrise service. We needed to be there at 5am --it takes about 25 minutes to get there and I had to get ready. I was helping our skit characters get dressed for the service. I have somehow assumed the role of costume coordinator for the church. I am sure this is because my wonderfully creative fashion sense! (then again..maybe i am dreaming, it probably has more to do with the fact i can sew!) After sunrise service we had potluck breakfast. My plate consisted of fried rice, cheesy potatoes and baked beans-praise be to the non-breakfast breakfast food! Next was childrens church where I played Nicodemus (don't I look just like him?) Then it was off to Carrie's apartment to cook for our Easter lunch at Katie and Mackey's house. I would like to point out at this time that I am a much nicer person than my friends after not having much sleep. They obviously did not get as much practice as me in school...or else i really am just nicer ;) ...but seriously, please note Carrie's crabby hat that she and Mark like to wear when they are guessed it..CRABBY!

After lunch, we had a small Easter Egg Hunt with Alexandria, where we tried to teach her the excitement of finding the Easter Eggs. I am not quite sure she understood why were were looking for those plastic eggs to begin with. She wasn't all that interested in them, so all of us girls clapped and cheered very excitedly every time she found one, hoping that she would catch on and find it interesting...the plan sorta worked, but she sure was cute huh?

Then finally after the few games of catch phrase and then packing up all my things from the entire weekend, I basically zombie drove all the way home, made myself stay awake until 8:45 then went straight to bed for work in the morning. WOW!
*Check my pics link for lots more Easter Pics!*