Monday, September 1, 2014

Angela's Wedding & Girls Trip 2014

I left Hawaii and flew into Oklahoma just in time for me to drop off the boys with my parents, and  high-tail it to Canada for Angela's wedding! I'm so glad that it worked out that we could celebrate our 11th annual girls trip watching Ange marry her dream guy, Charles Ibsen. Their love story is so unique and so clearly orchestrated by God. I'm so excited to see what He has in store for them!
They were married in the backyard of one of Ange's good friends in Greenley, Ontario (right outside Ottowa). Beautiful backdrop, and such a lovely day for a wedding!

Finally her turn! God is so good!
Ange's recessional song was "Happy" by Pharrell Williams, and of course, she danced down the aisle. The whole wedding and reception was so "Ange" from start to finish, complete with uncomfortable party games at the reception. :-)
Next year: our first ever couples trip?
First in line for refreshments. You will notice this trend...
We spent a day or two exploring beautiful Ottowa, the capital of Canada. Here's us in front of Parliament. (I think?)
High Tea at Château Laurier
It wouldn't be girls trip without pedicures!
One of many coffee stops

We spent the 4th of July watching fireworks on TV, eating Indian take-out in CANADA. Very surreal!
After Ottowa, we took a road trip to Mont Tremblant, a beautiful ski town in Montreal.
Feasting on "Beaver Tails" (AKA Canadian version of a doughnut) before our day of hiking
We took a ski lift to the top of the mountain.
We found some beautiful hiking trails overlooking the town.
The weather was perfect!

 After Mont Tremblant, we drove in to Montreal. It was such a fun city, and so FRENCH! It really felt like we were in Europe.
22 and 21 weeks (respectively), me with #3, Meg with #4. Not sure if she is having a boy or girl yet, but either way, they are destined to be BFFs. So fun to get to share another pregnancy with Meg!
Unfortunately, it rained for most of our time in Montreal, so we spent the majority of our time there inside eating and making each other laugh (which is what we do best anyway).
Dumplings in Chinatown. We liked them so much, we actually ate dinner here both nights!
Genuine French Crepes - yum!
We were able to snap a few shots of old town Montreal in between rain showers...


Lunch at Swartz Deli
 Over all, we laughed enough (and ate enough) to last us until next summer. I know I say this every year, but I'm so blessed to have these girls in my life. I think every summer gets more special because we know how rare it is that we have each other and this fun tradition. I hope and pray that there are many more girls trips to come!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Aloha to Hawaii! Our Crazy Summer: Part 1

What a summer... where to start? 
I guess I could start with: we're having a girl! Due on or around November 7th - only 10 1/2 short weeks away now! Still can't believe this! I didn't really realize how much a wanted a girl until I received my first pink gift. I gushed.

Also, We've moved from Hawaii to VA: 5 days before we supposed to leave for our annual mainland trip to OK, Scott was offered a new job with the Naval History and Heritage Command in Washington D.C. So, we decided to postpone our trip to OK, so that we could pack up our entire home and say goodbye to last 4 years of our life in three short weeks. Not an easy task - even for a person with normal energy and balanced hormone levels (unlike me). By the way, after this summer, I'm swearing off moving over oceans mid-pregnancy. Twice is enough. 

Here's a few photos of us soaking up our last few weeks in Hawaii Nei.

One last trip to the beautiful Byodo-in Temple in Temple Valley

 
Shark watching  at our favorite "evening beach" - Pyramid Rock. (water was closed due to hammerhead sightings!)

Crazy daddy!
Mark's first snorkeling lesson - he did great!
My first and only trip to Sharks Cove.
 
One last shave ice in Haleiwa
Chris took us out to the sandbar with our good friends, the Pitts.
Mark and his buddy, Will
The sun was high, the tide was low - it was a perfect day.
Paddle-boarding at Kailua beach on our last Saturday in Hawaii.

Baby sister starting to make an appearance.


Mark and Edward at the Aloha Tower harbor. Dinner out with the Heaths on our final weekend!

Farewell breakfast at the Kahala with great friends!


Breakfast at Duke's on our last morning!
Maddie, Will, and Barbara came to see us off at the airport. We will sure miss these sweet friends - and SO MANY OTHERS!
Giving our farewell leis to the Duke statue! I'm still blown away by the blue-ness of the water and sky in Hawaii!

We are so thankful to God for the four incredible years we had in Hawaii. What an unexpected and amazing adventure it was! It is so strange to think that it's over and we are opening  a new chapter in the life of our family.  New blessings and adventures ahead - stay tuned!

Monday, May 26, 2014

May Day is Lei Day in Hawaii!

Friday was the official May Day celebration at Keaton's school. May Day (Lei Day) is a huge deal here in Hawaii. Lei Day is a celebration of Hawaiian culture, or the aloha spirit. It technically happens on May 1st, but its normal for the celebrations to last throughout the month of May. Keaton's school practiced for weeks and weeks, and it was such a treat to see the day to come together.  
I got to go early and help Keaton and his classmates get their costumes ready. Keaton was the only one that refused to get his face painted with a nose and whiskers because he was "embarrassed!" Oh well, he still looked pretty cute.
Keaton's class waiting for their turn to perform.
It's customary during a May Day celebration for schools to elect a Lei Day court of Kings and Queens to represent the different islands. Each island has its own symbol that is composed of a color and a flower. Maui is pink, O'ahu is yellow, Moloka'i is green, Lana'i is orange, Kaho'olawe is gray, Kaua'i is purple, and Ni'ihau is white. Our good friend Avery Hewitt was the princess that represented the island of Hawai'i (red). She's in the red dress taking her place at court.
Here come the Kindergarteners!
My handsome lion!
They did a perfectly choreographed dance to "The Lion Sleeps Tonight."
Keaton and all the Kinders did such a good job. I actually cried - it was so cute. (I'm just a little bit pregnant)
Mark was not so impressed with the whole event. You can usually judge how bored he is based on how many times he says, "But Mom, I'm STILL HUNGRY!"
My good friend Barbara with Maddie and Will
Our sweet friend Chloe Hewitt. Her class did "The Sports Dance." Precious!
Princess Avery with her Hawaiian Prince.
The fifth graders did a traditional May Pole Dance. It was really impressive!
Keaton with his best buddy, Makana. I hope they are in the same class next year!
Chloe was very proud of her Princess sister!
I had so many reservations at the beginning of this school year in putting Keaton at this school. Trusting God with your child is not easy! It was amazing to see God's hand working in our family and Keaton's life through his teacher, his friends, and the relationships we made with other families at Ben Parker Elementary.  I can't believe there are only 3 days left of Kindergarten. I'm so proud of this big boy.