Saturday, October 4, 2008

I'm so excited! And I just can't hide it!

Panera opened its Little Rock location this week and I'm beyond thrilled! Josh and I had breakfast there today! YUM-O!!!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Maui 2008

Here's a glimpse at how awesome our honeymoon was. We left on Sunday and returned on Sunday. We stayed at the Hyatt Regency on Ka'anapali. Again, there are a LOT of pictures so beware. And believe it or not I actually only posted about 1/3 of them. I took a lot of pictures! How can you not though when everywhere you turn there's a beautiful view?!?!


Every good Arkansan needs to make a "Walmart run" to get a vacation started off right!

We got us some chips (which we ate a ton of all week) and some...


Here's our 'stang that took us everywhere we wanted to go.

Just got checked in to the resort. It was so nice!

A gift to us from the hotel for our honeymoon.

Our first Maui sunset. This is a view from our room.


Breakfast buffet...this was one of the highlights of the trips. It was sooooo good and so much to choose from. And the best was free! Well, I'm sure we paid for it somehow!

This is a view from our breakfast table. It was nice to start the day off here!

View from our room.

Another view from our room.

Flowers on our balcony

These are some flamingos that live at our hotel. We walked by them a lot on our way to the pool.

Here we are about to go explore and look for the Iao Needle

Iao Valley

Iao Needle

A hut we found along the trail.

Scenic Lookout off the highway. Not very scenic with a parking sign post in the picture.

After our exploring we went for lunch...Mexican of course!!! It was good! Josh liked it because it had a salsa bar! He's a fan of those.

Then we went to Hilo Hattie's to look for souvenirs. Josh found him a shirt.

That afternoon we came back and read at our hotel. It's an open hair hotel and they had all kinds of comfy seats where you could sit and read. AND they had a Starbucks next this. PTL!

Next to the reading area was a place for the penguins. Hawaii! Jenny, I knew you'd love them!

Isn't he cute?

For dinner we walked to Whaler's Village and ate at a beach side restaurant. It was nice.

For dessert we went and got some cookies at Honolulu Cookie Company. They were really good.


2:30am...on our way to see the sunrise at Haleakala.

It's starting to rise. It was SOOOO cold. We tried to dress in layers but the wind was fierce. If you go, and you should, take WARM clothes, gloves, and something to cover your ears.

Getting closer! I was just as awestruck by the clouds. It was amazing to be that high up and to be looking down on them as they filled the entire crater.

The clouds eventually swept right through and left us all wet. You can see my glasses fogged up. We chickened out for a moment and went inside this little open door room. It wasn't that warm just blocked from the wind for a moment.

The view was stunning. Certainly worth the miserable wait. It felt like we were so close to the sun. And the colors were different since the rays weren't blocked by the clouds. Amazing!

On our way down we stopped to take pictures. The clouds had rolled in so you can't see how awesome the view from this point is. We were still 10,000 feet above sea level.

Our entire drive down the mountain we saw this rainbow in the ocean. Hard to capture with a picture.

After we made it back to the hotel we ate breakfast, took a nap, then went to this pool. I left my camera in the room so there aren't any pictures from our pool time on that day.

For lunch we picked up this delicious chicken sandwich from a small hut next to the pool. So good.

Here we are on our balcony.


We went to the pool early on Wednesday. This is one of the views from our chairs.

This is another one.

And another one.

After we played at the pool a while we decided to stroll down to Whaler's Village. We stopped and played in the ocean for a few minutes.

That afternoon Josh let me order room service because I had been eyeing this dessert since we got there...coconut creme brulee! Oh my word!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It was perfection!

That evening we went to the Old Lahina Luau. It was great!

While we waiting to go in they passed out this delicious Hawaiian punch. The BEST thing I have ever had.

The Luau was set up right next to the beach which made it perfect!

They did a great job. Josh and I really enjoyed ourselves.


Today was our Road to Hana day. Josh's friend bought this cd when they came on their honeymoon so we borrowed it for our trip. It was nice to have some guidance along the way.

Our first stop was to Twin Falls. We hiked about 30 minutes to this waterfall. The last little stretch was a little dangerous but it was cool to make it to this point which is underneath the fall.

After the walk back we decided to treat ourself to some homemade apple banana bread. It was wonderful! So good, in fact, we got some more down the road. Josh still can't get enough banana bread.

Our next stop was the Garden of Eden. This place had tons of beautiful flowers, animals, and views. It was raining so we took shelter in this little overlook. We had some company.

Every where you turned there was a pretty picture that needed to be taken. Here's one of them. :)

On our way out we stopped by to see some of the birds.

We stopped and had lunch when we were halfway to Hana. I think this was about 3 1/2 hours into the trip.

Here's an example of some of the views along our drive. On one side there would be this and the opposite side would be rainforest and water falls. Again, this is a must see if you go to Maui.

We stopped at this part to check out the black sand beach. It was one of our favorite stops.

Here's a blowhole that we were told not to get near.

It was cool to watch the water shoot out.

Josh really wanted to get splashed by the water but it never happend.

Eventually we made our way to the beach down below. No sand though, just black rocks.

Here we are again...another picture...same pose...same outfit. We need to get more creative!

On our way back up we spotted a small opening in a cave. We decided to see what was inside and this is what we found. It was really neat and unfortunately this picture doesn't do it justice.

When we left the beach we got in our car and started back on the journey. We came across this awesome water fall and some street vendors. Obviously we had to stop and what all the fuss was about. Isn't this beautiful?

Our next stop was actually passed Hana to the Seven Sacred Pools. You can't really tell here but its a waterfall, pool, waterfall, pool and so on. It was really neat! This view is from the bottom looking up.

This is the spot we took our last picture. The end of the seven pools leads to the ocean.

It took us 8 hours to drive about 60 miles so we were hoping to make better time on the way home. This is a picture of me being scared of Josh's driving. He slowed down though and all was well. We made it back to our hotel in 3 hours so that was good!

On our last day we deicded to rent a cabana by the ocean instead of going to the pool. Great decision! It was a wonderful day!

This is a view from my lounge chair.

This is Josh playing in the water. It was really clear and the perfect temperature.

They brought us ice water...

...fresh pineapple (half eaten in this picture) and cold wet towels (no picture of those, sorry). It was so nice though! We enjoyed the extra attention to detail.

The waves ended up really big and strong as the day went on. It was nice to see waves like that. Not like the ones I'm used to on the Gulf Coast.

It's true, I do!

Spotted these little guys on our way back to the room.

Friday night we went to dinner at Mama's Fish House. I have been wanting to go here ever since Giada went here on her Food Network Show. I went back and forth about whether or not we should becuase it's fairly expensive. Josh, knowing how much I wanted to go, made the decision for me and we went. I'm so glad we went. It was worth every penny!!

This is where you get to go while you wait on your reservation.

Here we are again.

And again. Couldn't decide which picture to use so I put both.

As we were being seated I prayed the LORD would bless us with a great table to make the experience perfect and He did. We got one of the few ocean side tables. The restaurant is open air so it felt like we were right on the beach. Thank you, Lord!

Since we were there we decided to go all out. Here's the appetizer we ordered. It's seared beef in a papaya. Delicious! I didn't take pictures of the main course. Josh's looked good but since I'm not a seafood fan I opted for a WONDERFUL Maui Onion soup and tomato-blue cheese salad. It was great!

And for dessert, The Polynesian Black Pearl that Giada suggested. Divine! My girl, Giada wouldn't lead us astray!

Here we are after dinner, stuffed and happy!


After our last breakfast buffet *tear* we went swimming. Wanted to get it in one last time before we left.
After we got ready and checked out of our hotel we went shopping at Hilo Hattie's again and Barnes and Noble. I really wanted a Junior League cookbook from Hawaii since I've started collecting JL cookbooks over the last few years. I was really excited when I found one. I didn't take a picture though. I opted for the first one but if I ever get to go back I'll get the others. Josh got him some non-Hawaii books as his souvenirs while we were there too. We had fun at B&N. After that we went to eat some lunch.

The view from our table at Aloha Mixed Plate.

I was excited when I saw garlic fries on the menu. Ever since I went to San Francsico I've wanted to find some. We ate them the whole time in SF and couldn't find them anywhere else. Well, this place had them. And they were almost just as good! I was so happy. I thought of you, Holly. You would have loved them.

I guess it is only fair that we ended the pictures on one of food since that was a highlight of our trip. We had a wonderful time and would recommend Maui to anyone! It's worth the money and the long plane ride. Go, go now!!