Monday, May 27, 2013

Maui 2013

When Kyle and I first talked about taking a vacation before Drew comes, it was nothing more than a fleeting "that would be really nice" (but way out of our budget) conversation. That being said, a few months later when my dad offered to send us to Hawaii using his travel miles we didn't think twice before hoping on that plane (after checking with my doctor, of course)! In case we didn't say enough: thank you Dad!!

Here are some of the highlights from our trip:

We stayed at the Pioneer Inn, right in the heart of Lahaina. It was so perfect for us! It reminded us of the Inn we stayed at in La Conner right after our wedding. The best part about the Inn was the open-air restaurant downstairs, where we indulged in pineapple juice, pineapple slices, and macadamia nut pancakes every morning.

The town of Lahaina reminds me of Edmonds, so of course I loved it! Every night after dinner we walked up and down Front street, just taking in the scenery, people watching, and window shopping.

The Pioneer Inn is right across the street from Lahaina's famous Banyan Tree Park. This tree is HUGE! Our room looked right out at the tree, so we could sit out on our deck and watch people come and go from the park. We also had to go check out the tree up close...

On our first full day, we headed to Black Rock beach. We rented a little individual mobile cabana thingie (not as fancy as it sounds) so that we could both be in the shade in between ocean breaks. Of course, the beach was beautiful!

For our first dinner, we headed to Cheeseburger in Paradise - YUM! While waiting for dinner, we were playing with my camera's zoom feature and found a little crab friend. After dinner we walked up and down Front Street, watched the sunset, and then played cards on our balcony while Kyle taught me all about the moon and other fun astronomy related topics.

The next day we headed to Makena Beach. I know this beach is many people's favorite's, but I have to say I was not a fan. To be fair, my dislike probably had 90% to do with the fact that we didn't have beach chairs to sit on, or any shade (other than the trees, which means you have to sit really far away from the water). Something I didn't think through about going to the beach while pregnant is that you can't really "lay" out in the sun for a number of reasons: you can't lay on your stomach (duh), you can't lay on your back (something about compressing a vein that provides oxygen to the baby), you can't lay on your side (just looks weird!), and you can't be in the sun for too long before you just get plain HOT. So, we found out the hard way that beach chairs and ample shade are a must when you're 28 weeks pregnant at the beach. After leaving Makena beach, we headed back to our Inn to enjoy the sunset (and of course, walk up and down Front Street).

The following day we decided to pick up some snorkel gear for Kyle, and check out Kahekili Beach Park - this beach was by far our favorite! Ample parking, ample shade close to the water, and we got smart and rented our own beach chairs from Snorkle Bob's!

This was a great place to snorkel because the water was shallow enough to see plenty of fish, but there was no real risk of crashing into any reef. The pictures of Kyle getting geared up to go snorkeling make me belly laugh every time I look at them.

Kyle spent the day in and out of the water on snorkeling adventures, and then we both relaxed by reading and just splashing in the water (seriously, how pretty is this beach?!). Salt water is heaven when you're pregnant, because your body becomes so buoyant you almost forget you're pregnant (not that I would ever want to forget - I love being pregnant - but my joints really appreciated the salt-water reprieve).

That evening we went out to a nice dinner at Hula Hula grill in Kaanapali and watched another gorgeous sunset. God really wasn't holding out on us!

On our last full day we headed back to Kahekili Beach Park for some more relaxing, and I even got brave enough to try snorkeling. I have a huge fear of marine life and being in the water so close to fish - I don't like that there is no easy escape route. But Kyle was really patient and held my hand the entire time so that I wouldn't get scared - and it totally worked. I even got comfortable enough to just paddle around on my own a little. After snorkeling I proceeded to take 362 photos of the water because it is just so pretty!

When we got back to our Inn, we found that a vendor fair was taking place under the Banyan tree. Hello trinket heaven! Kyle headed back to the room to take a nap, while I carefully inspected each booth for a good souvenir. I settled on a hand drawn painting of the Lahaina shore, made by the woman in the booth on the bottom left below. I put it next to a similar picture we have in our room from Cannon Beach. Love. Bottom right is a picture of our balcony taken from the corner of the Banyan Tree Park. From our balcony we could see the water (to the right) and then look straight out over the park, so needless to say we spent a lot of time just reading or chatting out there.

On our last day, we headed south to Kihei to kill some time before our red-eye flight that night. We found a park and spent most of the afternoon reading (I loved my book so much I read it twice on this trip!). We watched some beach baptisms take place before having dinner at Fred's Mexican Cafe, and then finished our trip by watching the sunset one last time.

Giving it grace: I have to be honest, even posting the pictures of this trip makes me a little uneasy. It was such a generous gift by my dad, and God was even more generous in blessing our time together - I don't feel like we remotely deserved it. But - I guess that's the true nature of a gift - it's not earned, it's given in love. Just like grace :)

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