Today the Hart family played tourist and hopped on board the Star of Honolulu's whale watching boat. It was early in the season, but since they have guaranteed whale sightings I thought 'what the hell', even if we don't see whales we still get to go out on a boat and we can go back for free if we don't. Well, no sooner had we exited the harbor than the captain saw whales! We headed that direction and spent about 45 minutes watching a mama and baby in the water. I thought that was amazing enough, but every time I see whales I wish and I hope (and if I prayed I would) for them to breach. And then it happened...
We were driving away from the whales and the baby breached. I did not have my camera ready and thought that it probably wouldn't happen again. I was wrong...it did it like 5 more times. It was AWESOME! I mean AWESOME! (Yes, I'm squealing it!)
After watching them for a few more minutes, we pulled away and that concluded our whale sighting. It was like the Holy Grail of whale watching! We got back into the harbor and exited the boat at Aloha Tower. We've never been to the top of the tower and decided today was a lovely day to do it.
We had a tasty little lunch and headed back to the North Shore. I left Eve and CRH home to nap and hit my favorite beach, Papa'iloa. I saw 2 turtles out there today...one was way down the beach and I didn't feel like trekking down and then one was in the water. I kept my eye out for whale spouts, but I didn't see anymore today. I did witness a wedding and I managed to not yell "No, don't do it!". I crack myself up.
On another funny note, today I had Eve in the bathroom on the boat. She started to sit straight down on the nasty toilet seat (though this bathroom was amazingly clean and nice for a boat) and I shrieked "OMG, make a nest! Have I taught you NOTHING??" She replied with much exasperation in her little voice, "Yes, you've taught me that Southern women are crazy."
The Hart family had a wonderful, low key Christmas. Eve and I baked up a storm Christmas Eve. Between the night of the 23rd and Christmas Eve, we made 2 types of fudge, sausage balls, and 4 types of cookies! She's gotten to the age where's she an excellent helper, so it was really fun baking with her. Christmas Eve we had a huge ham dinner and watched The Grinch movie. Christmas Eve, Eve was tracking Santa online and stalked him around the globe. Finally at bedtime, she crawled into my bed and could not fall asleep from the excitement. I went in to the bedroom to get something at one point and she told me that she had sung herself songs, told herself stories, and tickled her back...but she still couldn't sleep. I finally laid down with her after she tracked Santa to Alaska and knew that Hawaii was his next stop. She was in tears afraid Santa would skip us because she was still awake. Indeed she fell asleep and Santa did not skip us. She woke me up at 4:45am to tell me that she knew Santa must have come because she'd been asleep for a good long while. I told her she better go back to sleep for another good long while, as we were NOT getting up that early. She lasted until 6:45am and there was no putting her off from that point. Santa brought her lots of goodies, as did family and friends. We had a wonderful day full of much food and alcohol. She ended up spending Christmas night at the neighbor's house and I missed her a ton but knew she was having more fun playing with all the kids! We hope you all had a Merry Christmas!!
This has been a fun filled week around here and super busy! Last Saturday, Eve and I went to my company Christmas party. She was adorable! We had a lot of fun and apparently she's my good luck charm. I won a mall gift card and $150. I never, ever, ever win things. We should have flown to Vegas that night.
Monday, she started Sea Life Park camp for the week. We try to send her every year and it's a great, educational week. The kids go to all the park exhibits, see behind the scenes, and learn a ton. After camp on Monday, she went to a friend's birthday party for a sleepover...Tuesday, she missed camp because she came home to nap...for 4 hours. This is a child that quit napping at 18 months. I kept checking to make sure she was breathing.
Finally on Wednesday night, I received all of my grades for the semester! I made straight "A"s. I was pretty confident about two of my classes, but I honestly had no clue what the other two classes were going to result in due to lack of timely feedback from those professors on things turned in near the end of the semester.
Today was Eve's big day at camp where she had her dolphin encounter. Sadly, CRH had to work but there were a few pictures taken to capture the moment. We came home and started round 1 of the holiday baking. We made fudge, peanut butter kiss cookies, and sausage balls. I almost got a little teary making the sausage balls. I remember being Eve's age making those with my mom. It's a Christmas tradition in our family that I love to keep going and fortunately it's something she'll actually eat! Anyway, I loved making them with her and I hope one day she makes them with her kids.
We had the pleasure of attending Eve's performances on Tuesday night at her former school, Ka'a'awa Elementary. They put on a Christmas show each year called "A Warm Christmas Night". I love it! It was dark though and we didn't capture the moment. No worries because tonight was her hula halau's annual Christmas party at Kualoa Ranch and here she is performing "The Christmas Luau" again. Moments like this make the weekly trek to Ka'a'awa totally worth it!
This is the Hawaiian version of this song. It cracks me up, enjoy!
Numbah One day of Christmas, my tutu give to me One mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Two day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Two coconut, an' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Tree day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Foah day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Five day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Five beeg fat peeg... foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Seex day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Seex hula lesson, five beeg fat peeg (that make TEN!), Foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Seven day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Seven shrimp a-swimmin', seex hula lesson, Five beeg fat peeg, foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Eight day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Eight ukulele, seven shrimp a-swimmin', seex hula lesson, Five beeg fat peeg (that make TWENNY!), foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Nine day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Nine pound of poi, eight ukulele, seven shrimp a-swimmin', Seex hula lesson, five beeg fat peeg, foah flowah let, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Ten day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Ten can of beer, nine pound of poi, eight ukuklele, seven shrimp a-swimmin' Seex hula lesson, five beeg fat peeg, Foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Eleven day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Eleven missionary, ten can of beer, nine pound of poi, Eight ukulele, seven shrimp a-swimmin', seex hula lesson, Five beeg fat peeg, foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree.
Numbah Twelve day of Christmas the bes', and the bes' stuff always come las'...) Numbah Twelve day of Christmas, my tutu give to me Twelve TELEVISION, eleven missionary, ten can of beer, Nine pound of poi, eight ukulele, seven shrimp a-swimmin', Seex hula lesson, FORTY steenkin' peeg, Foah flowah lei, tree dry squid, two coconut, An' one mynah bird in one papaya tree!
Music and lyrics published by Hawaiian Recording and Publishing Company, Inc., and copyrighted in 1959.
Yesterday was a Christmas extravaganza day for us. I'm not a fan of leaving the North Shore on the weekends after all the driving I do during the week, but poor Eve would never get to do anything if I didn't occasionally trek to town. Friday night, I went out to Ka'a'awa for a super fun Pomegranate Martini Christmas party with a bunch of hilarious women. That was a great kick off to my 4 day weekend! We played Naughty Santa and I left with 2 bottles of wine...score!
Yesterday I took Eve to The Nutcracker, which was followed by a Sugarplum Fairy tea. When we lived in NC, I would take her every year to the Sugarplum Fairy tea at the Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill. It's amazing...the venue is awesome...the food is great...there are photo opps with the fairy. This was far less grand, but Eve enjoyed it. We sat on a cement bench eating a quarter of a PB&J and drinking fruit punch, but she got to see the Sugarplum Fairy up close and that seemed to make her happy enough. NC has the tea thing in the bag though, Hawaii could take notes...I'm just saying. After the performance, CRH met us and we went to Ala Moana for our annual Santa visit. I LOVE Santa, but I hate this mall and I hate trekking into Waikiki yet every year I make us go b/c this Santa is THE best. Sure enough traffic was horrible on the H1 (even at 5pm on a Saturday) but once we got there it was all worth it. We got smarter this year and after entering the mall at Macy's where Eve could write her letter (I love that!)...we decided to skip the food court for CPK and enjoy a bottle of wine with dinner. CRH spotted sunset on the way to the restaurant, so we got to watch a beautiful sunset and then head to dinner. I could feel my blood pressure dropping as I polished off the last sips. Eve was so cute patiently waiting...poor kid. I had a plan for the mall...you should never go into that mall without a clear cut agenda because it's vast. After executing it down to the level Santa was on, we hopped in line. It wasn't bad...really. There was entertainment from the other parents and kids in line and we moved pretty quickly along (Yes, 2 weeks before Christmas on a Saturday night no less!). I think this may be the last year for Santa though, so it was a little bittersweet for me. She's asking a ton of questions and when I avoided her yesterday she totally called me on it. I hate for that innocence and magic to leave, so I'm keeping it going as long as I can, but I was 8 years old when I figured it out and I'm worried she's smarter than I am. When we left the mall, we went to the City of Lights display. We went for the first time last year and it's so cool. I've added a couple of pictures below. Eve questioned again how Santa could be at the mall and at the City of Lights. We gave the patented 'Santa can't be in every place all at once...' after the 'He's a magical elf.' fell flat. I'm worried she's onto us.
Eve and I had a fun weekend starting to get into the spirit and making and baking stuff. Yesterday, I woke up with some serious motivation to get it in gear. Last year, I waited until the last minute and I regretted it because I was super tired and quite grumpy. So, Eve and I made our ornaments yesterday for the family. Since I don't want to spoil the surprise, I won't describe them but holy hell they were tedious. I have mild OCD (self diagnosed of course) and I'm a perfectionist...so this tried my nature but I kept my psychoses under wraps and we had fun doing it! After the ornaments finished, we headed to the beach and took her Christmas pics for the cards. I'm going to be organized enough this year to send out cards, really. Last year, I skipped it (see previous paragraph). I will spoil it and tell you that this is so the one. I love it, especially since you can see her lack of front teeth. Once we left the beach, I came home to make fudge. I'm an excellent baker, if I do say so myself. I've actually spent the past 6 months cooking as well...but baking is my thing (or so I thought). My fudge requires a spoon...it did NOT set up. It's yummy goodness, but it's gooey and soupy. I'll probably try another batch later in the season.