A little more of Paradise…

A little more of Paradise…

The Island of Oahu was surreal.  It is amazing how the real die hard surfers are hitting the waves before the crack of dawn.  The waves are unbelievably high, the weather is warm and the water temperature is perfect.  We stayed just a few blocks down from Waikiki Beach. Waikiki Beach is certainly not a quiet beach and nor is the City of Honolulu. Honolulu gives me the Los Angeles vibe.

We spent our time soaking up the sun, boogie boarding in the ocean, snorkeling, and building sand castles with my Ray.  In all honesty I enjoy the ocean a lot more sitting on the beach and listening to the sound of the waves rather than actually going in the water.

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On our walk around the Island we stumbled upon the Honolulu Zoo. This was a wonderful Zoo for the boys. Ray enjoyed petting some of the animals and we spotted all kinds of animals from Zebra’s, Giraffe’s, Flamingo’s, and even a lion.

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The Honolulu Zoo had huge Banyan trees scattered throughout the zoo, but mainly by the entrance. The astounding structure of these ginormous trees not only provided us a little shade on the scorching hot day but also called for a lot of selfies and picture taking moments.  We were so into our photo sessions that it was here that a thief crept up around us at some point and stole my sisters purse, the entire purse! Which lead to another fun fiasco on the trip. Considering we had to fly to the Island of Maui the next day and we didn’t have an ID we had to file a police report.  The thief nor the purse came to sight but a check was certainly written from the missing purse which was definitely caught before cashed.  And so the trip continued, just with a little less baggage at my sisters expense…

We were fortunate enough to make this trip with family so we had the opportunity to leave the kids with my sister as we took a little midnight stroll around the city of Honolulu.  The hubby and I took full advantage of this moment and did all things romantic from a long walk on the beach continued to a walk in the inner streets of Honolulu holding hands as though we were a new couple.

Turns out at night they have local vendors selling hand crafted souvenirs and delightful sugar cane juice, fresh cut coconut and a lot of other fresh fruit which we nibbled on along the way. We walked along the beach and came across a revolving restaurant & bar called Top of Waikiki. Although we experienced a revolving restaurant before at this place we didn’t realize it was revolving till both of us looked at the changed scenery outside. The cocktails and late night snack we grabbed were phenomenal.

The trip continued to more sun, sand, and the ocean in Maui followed by more secluded beaches, strolls along the beach, an attack by a jelly fish (my poor nephew), lots more sun  burning, delicious and fresh seafood, a trip down the road to Hana, hikes in Bamboo forests, black sand beaches, and ended with a curvy drive up to the summit of Haleakala (elevation 10,023 feet) a shield Volcano (This is where Ray vomited from car sickness) you are literally above the clouds.

An unforgettable trip that was the highlight to the start of our summer. I could go on writing about the trip.  For those of you planning to make a trip to Hawaii feel free to reach out for more details on places to see and things to do.

Here’s to more adventures ahead!

Aloha from Hawaii…

Aloha from Hawaii…

A super spontaneous trip to Hawaii! We’ve learned well planned out trips in advance rarely work-out for us. Just last summer we had a Europe trip all planned out passports ready, airfare, hotels, car transport within Europe ALL booked! Only two weeks after booking the trip our older boy Ray gets hospitalized for three days due to a terrible asthma attack.  Not just that, I was 4 months pregnant and all over the news all we hear is the terrible outbreak of the Zika virus.  We decided to cancel the trip.  It was heartbreaking but luckily we had booked most things with refundable benefits, I guess one of the perks of booking in advance.

So this trip to Hawaii was all the more fun since we barely planned anything and literally bought the ticket less than 24 hours before boarding on our flight. We knew this was our opportunity for a nice break and to make the most of our trip now that we’ve got Ray’s asthma under control and baby JJ is here!

A two and a half hour car ride from Pocatello to SLC Airport and a six hour and forty-five minute airplane ride later, we made it to Paradise, Honolulu, Hawaii!!! The airplane ride was smooth until about 30 minutes before landing and the boys began to get a little restless. Entertaining the boys on the flight was a challenge. Mostly just Ray he refused to sit in our laps and wanted constant entertainment just as any 18 month old. JJ just wanted to be fed, rocked, and required very little entertainment and so hubby decided to keep JJ (How convenient!).

Most parents had their children glued to electronics during the flight. These days keeping  children off electronics at home is a challenge let alone a cramped up airplane seat for 5+ hours. Between hubby and I we kept the boys fed, changed, rested, and entertained.  Although for a short span of the flight (last 30 minutes) we resorted to Delta’s finest television offered for the most part we kept them entertained with engaging activities. To avoid electronics for your toddler during a long flight or road trip I’ve compiled a short list of my top 5 activity must haves before departing a flight. I prefer to avoid the electronics avenue as my kids are still really young.

Top 5 Travel Activity Must-Haves For Toddlers

  1. Boogie board scribble and play

These are awesome! They come with four different pieces and are mess free.  Ray played with his boogie board for at least one hour before he got tired and bored.  He scribbled and practiced his ABC’s with me.  And another bonus, when the kids are napping hubby and I use it for a quick game of the classic tic-tac-toe.

    2.   Any Toy/Stuffed Animal

These can keep kids entertained for hours with pretend play. And sometimes fuzzy stuffed animals can even help soothe and your child may catch some snooze time. Works for us with Ray!

3.   Crayola Color Wonder Mess Free Coloring Book

These are seriously the best! Unlike crayons and markers that are messy and end up on the seat, tray table, clothes, and hands these are MESS FREE.  The colors show up on the coloring book only when the provided markers are used (best for travels on road trips too).

4.   Flash cards/ Kids Brain Quest Cards

For my 18 month old I just grabbed simple flash cards with ABC’s, numbers, and Pictures on them.  We’d hold up a card and practice saying the word that related to the letter, number or picture on the reverse side. Great for learning and time-pass!

    5.   Books

For a child two and under preferably a pop-up book.  Pop-up books keep the child engaged as its an element of discovery for the child.

These 5 items were my saviors through this almost 7 hour flight with my highly energetic boys (both under 2)!

For now I’m off to enjoy some sun, sand, and the ocean!

Stay tuned for more updates from Paradise! 10 days and 2 Islands to cover it’s going to be an epic time!