Hawaii or Bust!

The obligatory fuzzy lava picture. The viewing at night was exceptional while we were there, or so we were told.
To celebrate our fifteenth anniversary some more we went to Hawaii in November right before Thanksgiving! It was much anticipated - we planned who would have the kids about 11 months ahead of time and I kept a countdown on my whiteboard for at least 25 days ahead of time.. But at last the arrangements were made, the kids were transferred, the bags were packed and we were on the plane! We flew to Honolulu and caught a smaller plan to the Big Island, flying into Hilo on the east side. We enjoyed our stay at the Volcano House for two nights, right in the Volcano National Park, then traveled to the Kona side and stayed at a resort on the Kohala Coast for 4 nights.
The volcano is on the rainy side of the island. We felt right at home!

It didn't rain the whole time, though, and we enjoyed a 5 mile hike down into a caldera and up the other side.

Michael surprised me by renting a "nice car." We enjoyed it!
This is on the dry side of the island, near where we were staying. 80 degrees every day, people.

We enjoyed the local fruit - this is a cocoa pod. You eat the white nibs, suck off the sweet stuff on the outside and then either spit out the bitter parts (what we make cocoa from, right?) or eat them, too - I didn't care for the second approach, but Michael thought it was refreshing.

We enjoyed several nice dinners out. 

And of course, a luau! Michael convinced me to take a hula lesson and we got (very) temporary tattoos. Living large!

It wasn't all hiking and dining out - we tried our hand at ziplining as well!

Coming home to typical November weather was a shock after eating out on a terrace the night before we left! 

We sure enjoyed ourselves - it was a refreshing change of pace from our normal hectic schedules and we really enjoyed the time with just the two of us. We are very thankful to our friends and family who made it possible by watching our kids for us while we were away! You really blessed us. :-)


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