Our Trip to Paradise 2018

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Hawaii was exactly what our family needed. It was hella fun, mixed with some snot and melt downs and missing every other turn. But it was great nonetheless! I mean, it's hard NOT to have fun when you're in paradise; it also pushes you to embrace the bumps in the road a little bit more.

About half way into our flight TO Hawaii, my throat started to feel muggy and sore. I tried to shrug it off as the recycled cabin air bothering my throat, but low and behold, after it subsided for a couple days, it came back full force - I had developed a nasty cold! Of course I inevitably passed it to Oaks and Ace, and then Jessy was destined to get it as well, though he luckily caught it at the tail end of our trip. He even hid it from me for two days because he didn't want me to be bummed that he felt under the weather as well! And I really had no idea - he hid it well. I love him. 

Despite stuffy noses and phlegmy coughs, we truly had a fantastic time. I am already reminiscing on our vacation and nostalgia has already settled in. I just LOVE traveling, especially with my family.  

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We did the first half of our ten day trip on Kona (Hawai'i) with Jessy's parents and my sis/brother-in-law and niece. Then the last half we split off and flew to Maui to spend some time just us and our kids. For us, this worked great and we really enjoyed doing vacation this way. 

Kona, Hawai'i (The Big Island)

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Kona was super fun! We rented an Airbnb up on the mountainside with a spectacular view! It was only a ten minute drive, and lots of ear popping, to the downtown Kona area where little shops, restaurants, and the ocean were. The house was AMAZING and I'll miss swinging around with the kids, hanging out on the lanai with family, all the open windows, and relaxing in all the sunny window nooks. I will not miss all the mosquito bites though! (;   

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We also visited some fun beaches on Kona! Despite the fact that Kona is known for their mostly rocky beaches, there are actually some wonderful options. To be honest, after visiting Kona, Oahu, and Maui (Jessy and I had our honeymoon in Hawaii) - I have found that my favorite beach has been on Kona - we went to it on our honeymoon, and revisited it on this trip. It's known as Beach 69. The waves are very mild and the water is clear and everyone is able to set up 'camp' amongst trees that provide both shade and privacy! The cherry on top: both times visiting Beach 69 I got to swim around with turtles while snorkeling! 

Beach 69

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We also drove toward the other side of the island and visited a black sand beach that was super beautiful! 

Punalu'u Black Sand Beach

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Maui

After saying aloha to The Big Island, we took a SMALL plane over to Maui for the last half of our trip. We ended up staying in Kihei and it was the perfect spot for us to be! There were lots of high rated restaurants all within short walking distance, along with shaved ice, gelato, a pool, and a nice beach right across the street. Once we got to Maui and realized how convenient of a spot we were in, we honestly hardly drove. All we wanted to really do at this point was relax and decided it would make us ALL happy to not spend time in a car - we figured the next time we came back to Maui with the kids we could do more island exploring. It just didn't feel worth it to listen to Oaks cry in the car a bunch and have Ace stuck on his iPad watching Mickey Mouse to keep him occupied. We wanted to hang out, drink beers, swim, and eat a bunch of good food. All of that was possible right where we were!

Baby Beach

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Baby Beach was the only beach we drove to that took 45+ minutes (with surprise construction it turned into an hour and a half on the way to the beach - this was what solidified our thoughts on just sticking around Kihei for the rest of our time on Maui). It was a perfect beach for babies, hence the name, because there were virtually no waves and it was knee to hip deep from shore to the brigade of rocks in the distance. We really enjoyed it being a low stress area for a one and two year old! 

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Pa'ako Beach (aka Secret Cove)

This little slice of paradise was a less than ten minute drive from our condo. We decided to do a morning beach hang and got there around 9am. When we arrived, there were already two sets of photographers taking photos of couples, and two elopements setting up. (Then a third showed up!) Apparently this beach is one of the most photographed beaches in Hawaii. I was obviously guilty of pulling my camera out too haha. It was still a neat place to spend the morning though because aside from some photography/elopements happening, it was pretty low key and we never felt 'in the way.' Ace and Oaks had fun exploring and tromping around in the sand. And it was soooo pretty!

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Kihei Beach Resort

The third (and last) beach we went to was the one across the street from our Condo. At this point we were getting pretty tired of clearing all the sand off the kids and trying with failed efforts to keep the sand out of their eyes a mouth (Oaks especially). The waves were a little bigger here on the day we decided to go, and Oaks was pummeled by a couple surprise waves on shore, which led to her not wanting to go for a swim with me haha - but Ace LOVED 'the biggies' ("big" waves - to him) and spent a lot of time out in the water with Jessy going up and down and giggling. We felt like it was a good last beach to hit up, and it was cool experiencing how different beaches are from one another with their vibes, wave structure, sand, etc. 

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Just a Few of Many Moments to Remember 

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At the Ribordy Family Reunion, Oaks was being flirty and bashed her tooth into a glass table. . . and now her front tooth is chipped! Whoopsie. 

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I'm a shaved ice lover. And I'm obviously into photographs. So I naturally wanted to combine the two. Well, when I went to move my shaved ice (that I didn't place in the table cut out), it tipped over and half of it fell through the hole. Oof. That sucked. I felt ridiculous and totally bummed and told Jessy to "put away the camera because what's the point? I ruined it." But then as he started to put it away, I said "No, you know what. Take a couple pics. This is reality! This is our shaved ice memory. Me being a doofus! Plus, we can just eat some of Ace's (muwahaha)." 

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Lots of memories made at our condo. But some of my favorites were drinking beer with Jessy while playing cards outside - Ace staying up really late and eating popcorn/watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (living his best life) while Jessy and I relaxed outside on the balcony - Ace running down the pathway every day, chasing lizards . . . they would all scamper as he ran through - swimming at the pool - bringing take out home from food trucks for dinner - Jessy vs. Praying Mantis Part I and Part II. 

Anyhow, with ALL that being said, WE LOVED HAWAII! Take me back!!!