We Went to Hawaii!

Last month, we went to Hawaii! Glenn took me to Hawaii, if you really want to be exact. It wasn’t a surprise, but it was a gift. A generous one I might add. {!!!!!!! to say the least !!!!!!!!} We flew to the Big Island – a new island for us – the day before Mother’s Day. This year, Mother’s Day also happened to fall on the 10th of the month, which is always a more sensitive day for both Glenn and I, so it was extra special to get to be on a fancy-pants vacation together on such a tender holiday.

I came down with a horrible, horrible, horrible cold a few days before we left. Needless to say, flying with severe congestion is not exactly ideal.

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We made it through the flight, however, and were SO glad to land in Kona!

Since this was our first time to the Big Island, we had a lot of fun exploring and finding our favorite spots. We stayed at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel and LOVED it. We have heard about this place from our dear friends for years, and were thrilled to finally get to experience it ourselves. We felt like it was laid back and Hawaiian, but still quite nice. We explored several other resorts on the island and decided we would choose Mauna Lani again in a heartbeat, unless the Four Seasons somehow became an option. {ummm… hello. it likely will not. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$}

There were lots of spots to walk or bike on the property, and we had a blast doing both.

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Our favorite restaurant was The Beach Tree, which is actually on the Four Seasons property.  We went twice, once for lunch and once for dinner, and both were spectacular. Relaxed, delicious, fun, and gorgeous views — exactly the vibe we were looking for. At dinner they have live music, which is always such a treat!

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This pictures was not taken at The Beach Tree, this is at The Canoe House, which was the restaurant on our hotel property which was also delicious, but not our favorite. 🙂

Our favorite beach was our beach at the Mauna Lani – the snorkeling was good {Glenn saw two turtles!!} and there is a nice calm bay so ocean wimps like me don’t have to fear for their lives.

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The final thing I will share with you was our favorite adventure. This trip was more about the relaxing/vacationing than adventuring, but we both really wanted to see the volcano, since The Big Island is the only Hawaiian island that still has an ACTIVE volcano on it. You guys — it was soooooooooo cool! It is a serious drive from the resort areas to the volcano, but so worth it. We saw LAVA SPEW. Straight up. We smelled what the insides of the earth smell like as we walked through the steam vents. We trekked through rain forest and jumped over big puddles to get to a lava cave. We had dinner {and Glenn had a “lava flow” – how appropriate} overlooking, you guessed it, A LAVA POOL. It was really such a fun day, and the only part we didn’t like was driving 3 hours back to our part of the island at the end of the day. Still, totally worth it and something we would highly recommend to anyone visiting the Big Island that likes a little adventure!

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Finally, we flew home on what felt like one of the longest, most boring, most drawn-out, and, quite frankly, worst flights ever. 🙂 It became comical just how bad the service and entire experience on this flight was. I think you can see the attitude in our faces here. Alas, we were not on vacation anymore, but it was still good to get home!

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So much fun was had! What a treat! I can’t get over just how special it was to get to go on this vacation last month — over Mother’s Day, pregnant with our second son, with lots of time and space to remember and talk about Branch, and lots of time and space to be silly and rest. SUCH a treasured time. Thank you for making it happen, Glenn! xoxoxo

~Kristin

Seven Facts or Vacation and Why it’s Awesome

7. Celine Dion rocks my socks off. I don’t need to go into detail, but she’s still pretty awesome and not “washed up” like some people claim (ehm, ehm, Sandra). Definitely worth the money, definitely has a great voice. Also, I’ve recently decided she has aged very well and, seemingly, without having any “work” done. She has real wrinkles and it’s refreshing.

6. People still smoke cigarettes. Who are these people? Idiots, that’s who. I mean really. WHO is still smoking cigarettes? Unless you’re in Berlin, pretending to be Anthony Bourdain, or want to die a slow and painful death — why would you put those stinky cancer sticks into your mouth and willingly inhale??? I’m talking to you, Las Vegas.

5. The Bellagio Buffet (where 4 of the gals I was with are seated, above) is still the best. I’ve had the others. None compare. Except for when it comes to the dessert bar, in which case Paris takes the {literal} cake because they have a guy standing there making fresh nutella or jam crepes.

4. Talking about whether or not Rob Bell is a heretic, the impacts of generational sin, wounds we are all still processing, and what servant-hood and humility look like in marriage is socially acceptable. Even in the city of sin. So what if everyone around you is seeing double through their wayfarer’s and reeks of last night’s vodka tonic? Being true to yourself, no matter where you are, is always what is most attractive.

3. Don’t try to drive from Las Vegas to anywhere outside of Las Vegas on a Sunday at noon. Definitely don’t stop at In-N-Out first. You will be met with more hungover wayfarer’s and a lot of traffic. Your burger will be delicious, however.

2. California is the best place on the planet. I’ve visited and lived in a lot of places. There is nowhere my beat up Vans and I would rather reside than my home state of CA.

1. Living far away from home is hard. Even if it’s temporary. Even if it’s beneficial. It’s still not fun. How great, though, that we live in an age where travel is so simple and weekends to catch up with friends are a reality.

And an extra number, ’cause it’s Tuesday:

1.5. Husbands are the best. Especially nice ones. Like mine.

For another fun re-cap (and more pictures) of our trip check Erin’s blog HERE.

Have a great night, all! Much love and thanks for reading.

~Kristin