Thursday, September 18, 2008

Mom & Dad came to paradise for a visit!

Mom and dad came to Hawaii as part of the celebration of their 30th wedding anniversary which was July 27th. They came for a total of 9 days and it was jam packed with activities, shopping, eating, and beaing beach bums. The main things we did together while they were here were Pearl Harbor and Polynesian Cultural Center in Oahu. During the week they went on a snorkeling cruise and parasailing by themselves. There were lots of pictures taken so I'm going to post just some of the best ones.

This first picture is us hiking to one of the waterfalls on the Road to Hana. Refer to one of my previous posts to understand exactly what that is. Alex and I did it by ourselves not too long ago for the first time. This was our second time with mom and dad.

Next is a picture of us feeding the peacocks on our picnic, also on the road to Hana. They were freakin me out and getting a LITTLE too close! We had this picnic in the arbetorium (not sure if I spelled that right). It's a gated 10 acre "park" persay of nothing but plants, trees, and wild birds like the peacocks. It was sooo gorgeous! Everything was labeled so you knew exactly what kind of plant/flower it was. Very cool and only $10/person!

The very last stop on the Road to Hana was the Seven Sacred Pools. It is an ancient myth that if you swam in all seven pools, you would be healed or something so hence the name. Pretty sure this was the highlight of dad's trip! It's not ocen water although the seven pools flows into the ocean, so it wasn't salty or anything. After swimming around for awhile dad and I got brave and climned the rocks about 20-30 feet high and jumped off! First time I had ever been cliff jumping so it was pretty awesome so do it with my daddy!

As you can imagine, the beach was one of the top priorities for this vacation ;) We went snorkeling together for 3 days straight when Alex and I got off work at 3:30 PM. It was perfect because everyone had pretty much left the beach and it wasn't too hot. Because of that ALOT of fish we visible. We go to see sting rays swimming about 100 yards away. We also got to see the usual schools of bright colored fish, a puffer fish eating another fish, beautiful coral, sea urchins the size of soccer balls, and....SHARKS! ha ha just kidding!

We had to show mom and dad what eating in Maui is "really" like so we ate out every night pretty much at a different restaurant. The night we got back from our Road to Hana trip we took them to Cheeseburger in Paradise. It has the best burgers! The thing that made the night for my dad was the live entertainment! In fact, since we got their right at closing and we were their very last table, the entertainer stayed later just for us and sang nothing but James Taylor songs for my dad! That guy got a pretty good tip to say the least. It was so funny because my dad was SOOO into the music that when the waitress came to ask him what he wanted to eat, we had to tap him on the shoulder and say "snap out of it dad we need to order!" It was so yummy. A few other places we ate we BJ's Pizza, Bubba Gumps, and Cool Cats. BJ's was my dad's second favorite place because there was live entertainment there too. This time instead of James Taylor music, it was a really cool guy from our ward actually playing the ukaleili (don't know if I spelled that right either). He even sang 2 Primary songs it was so awesome! I ended up buying his CD he had for sale.

The last 2 days of mom and dad's vacation was spent on the island of Oahu where Honolulu is. They couldn't spend all that money coming to Hawaii and not stop at Pearl Harbor or the Polynesian Cultural Center. To say the least, Pearl Harbor was a very neat experience. To see oil still leaking out at a rate of 2 quarts a day for the past 67 years really put the whole thing in perspective. Reading the wall of names of those killed on the USS Arizona alone was really really sad. If anyone goes to Hawaii, it is a must see.

At the Polynesian Cultural Center, we walked all around an outdoor 42 acre musuem type deal and learned all about the 5 Polynesian cultures: Tahiti, New Zealand, Tonga, Somoa, and Hawaii. Each village had their own show, all of which were very fun to watch. There was a canoe pageant where all the 5 cultures did a dance on a flat top canoe while it moved throught the stream. It was very entertaining. We went to an award winning luau where we got leis, entertained, tropical smoothies, and all you can eat pig, rice, salad, fish, etc. The lady that hosted the luau asked for all those on their honeymoon or celebrating their anniversaries to come up on stage. Of course mom and dad went up and they got to dance to a Hawaiian wedding song. It was so cute.

Before we went to the airport we walked around Waikiki Beach and did some last minute shopping. We were all so exhausted we didn't end up swimming at all, just lounging around.

After a long 9 days and action packed hours, it was a bitter sweet goodbye. Mom and dad were exhausted and we were ready to get back to "real life". Thanks mom and dad for the visit! Alex and I can't wait to move back home and see you on a regular basis! WE LOVE YOU!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Family Pictures

So we totally took these family pictures while we were in Idaho for a week, but I barely got the CD with all of them when my parents flew into Hawaii to visit us this week. My apologies! They turned out super good. Before these ones, the last family pics we took was when I was in 7th grade right before Parker's mission! Now I'm 20 and going on 2 yrs of marriage. Man does time fly! The first one is the whole family with all 3 in-laws and the two grandsons. Lucas belongs to Robyn & John and he just turned 1 on August 23. Caleb is the son of Parker & Heather and he just turned 2 on July 25. Then of course we have my sweet Alex. The second picture is just Alex and I and I think it turned out pretty dang good! :) Last but not least, the "original Lyons Crew". Next time we take another family picture, there could be a few more "additions" and possible another in-law or two. (Hopefully we don't go that long again!)