Monday, February 27, 2012

Look Who's ONE!!

We celebrated Audrey's birthday with family last Sunday. After some food and mingling, we opened presents.

She knew exactly what to do, and was very excited about each gift.

And then it was on to the cake. Audrey's been having bites of dessert for awhile now, so there was no confusion about what she should do with the massive square of chocolate we put on her tray.

She started out slow, mentally preparing for the feast.

She was very serious the whole time; never cracking a smile but fully enjoying herself.

And then she dove right in. There wasn't much left when she was through with it. A girl after my own heart.
At least she was willing to share.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Have A...

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Love, The Valentines :)

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Last Days in Maui

On Monday we stopped at a couple beaches. Chris borrowed someone's paddleboard for a few minutes.

That night we did some shopping in Lahaina with Scott and Tauna. In the middle of the strip is Banyan Tree Park. Believe it or not, this is ONE tree. It extends along the whole length of the park, touching down and growing new roots/trunks all over the place.

While shopping we met a couple really cool locals.

Audrey loved that the Neerings don't have baby locks on their cabinets. She pulled out this pot (among other things) and decided to get inside.

On Tuesday, our last full day, Maui gave us a parting gift. This was the brightest, clearest rainbow we've ever seen.

We spent the day at the beach. Audrey loved waving at the people and watching Chris body board. He caught some pretty big waves!

That night we picked up some fresh fish at a local market. The top fish is a Kula, a Unicorn Fish (you can find these while snorkeling around the coral). And the bottom is a Striped Snapper.

After packing and putting on our saddest faces, we made the long flight home on Wednesday. Thank you, Scott and Tauna, for helping make it an awesome trip!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Snorkeling and Hiking

Okay, so I don't actually have pictures of us snorkeling. But here is a picture of Audrey sleeping on the beach, which is the reason we were able to go snorkeling. I LOVED it. Scott and Tauna watched our sleeping beauty for us while we explored the coral and fish.

The following day we hiked inside Iao Valley.

Along the way we found a lot of fruit. One of Chris' favorite things about our trip is being able to pick fruit from anywhere and eat it. Here are a few of his favorites.

This is a strawberry guava. These are pretty good. The only problem is that there are small seeds in the center that you have to spit out.

This is a regular guava. Chris likes them a lot but they're too sour for me. Also, the problem with the seeds. I'm not a fan.

This is coffee. Chris likes to chew on the beans, but they taste bitter to me.

Each little round fruit has two beans inside.

These, of course, are bananas. We have been eating apple bananas the entire time we've been here. They are really yummy.

And then there's Chris' favorite. The coconut tree. Everywhere we go he looks for coconuts to open up, drink the water inside, and eat the meat. I'm not thrilled with the taste of the water but I really enjoyed the fresh nutty meat inside.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Road to Hana

On Wednesday we took the Road to Hana. The town of Hana is beautiful, but the road getting there is AMAZING. Tiny roads cut into the landscape winding you through trees, waterfalls, and great views of the coastline.

That afternoon we went for a hike. There was a section of the hike that took you through towering bamboo.

At our destination, Waimoku Falls, we were amazed at how long it was. The camera couldn't fit the entire thing.
Hiking back, we stopped to admire this tree.

That night we camped with Audrey for the first time.

I've always wanted to see a black sand beach. Goal accomplished.

We swam in a freshwater cave. I am standing in the water up to my waist in this picture. The water is that clear.

And that day Audrey decided (drumroll please) the ocean is fun!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Haleakala & Some Beaches

Haleakala is one of the two volcanoes on Maui. On Tuesday we drove to the summit and did a little hiking into the crater. We didn't go all the way down - it would have taken a least 5 hours and there was no cover from the sun.

Audrey spent most of the day like this:

On the drive back down we felt like we might have gone to heaven - the clouds below us were so thick we could have driven right onto them.

The next day we went to a beach in Makena. Audrey wants nothing to do with the sand (too yucky) or the water (waves are scary). But she was perfectly happy to play with sand toys on a blanket.

After playing and relaxing we checked out the remains of the last lava flow on the island.

Then finished off with some more relaxing and wave watching.

We bought a coconut and drank it's juice and headed to Iao Valley.

The plants that grow in Hawaii are so surreal - I wish my backyard looked like this.