Wordless Wednesday: December 1st at the Beach

December 1st - Bellows Air Field Beach

Planning My Hawaiian Holiday Season

I’ve never lived in a place where I can still wear tank tops or sleeveless dresses at the end of November. Now, I do – well, except for today because I could do with a sweater or something because it’s pretty windy out today. It’s not *quite* 80 degrees here today. I heard from a friend that it dipped into the 20’s recently back in Virginia. Scarves, hats and jackets are normal for this time of year. Strapless dresses are not.

This year – I’m not dreaming of a “white” Christmas – that is, unless it’s a “white” sandy beach!

I’m getting so many beautiful ideas from – of coursePinterest!

I’ve already decided to take the kids on a hunt for shells/ seaglass/ etc. so we can make some pretty Beach-inspired ornaments. There aren’t many “big” shells here on Oahu, but there are certainly small (“puka”) shells to be found!

Another item I’ve been on the hunt for has been strands of ‘star’ shaped Christmas lights! I don’t know why – but I’m a little obsessed with them.

I’m planning on having our family photo taken on the beach – with red ‘Hawaiian’ inspired attire of course! This is our first Christmas here in Hawaii so I’m going to milk it for all it’s worth! The beach portrait will be our family Holiday card this year. Sure, it’s lame and “touristy” – but hey – I’ve always been one to let my nerd-flag fly high!

What are your plans for your holiday decor? Where are you getting your inspiration from?

Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center

When we first got to Oahu we were staying in the Ala Moana Hotel – bored – and looking for something to do to entertain our kids (7 years old and 21 months old). So, on July 29th we checked out the Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center! General admission is $10.00 although military members get in for $8.00 (active duty, with ID). Kids under 1 year old are free. So it wasn’t exactly CHEAP but it was fine. Especially since the place is HUGE. The hours vary – but we were playing there from around 10am until 1pm, which was enough time to see everything.

The center has something for all ages of kids. Using state-of-the-art technology, the Center provides a “window to the world” and the opportunity for children to explore and discover things about themselves and the world through play. The Discovery Center has four major galleries, each filled with hands-on, interactive exhibits.

There are a couple play areas just for little ones under five years old and also sections for your under three-year-olds. The Tot Spots are awesome places filled with lots of cool sensory stimulation! My 20 month old had a BLAST playing in them!

Fantastic You is an area where you can take an “inside look” at the wonders of the human body and learn how the different parts of your body work together!

Your Town was by far the favorite of my seven year old! Here, your little one can be a grown-up for a day and learn how a community functions. My son loved dressing up like a police officer as well as a postman (and delivering the mail!) – we spent the most time in this section I think!

Hawaiian Rainbows is a favorite with preschoolers, and gives them the chance to dress up and play house in kid-sized versions of typical homes in India, the Philippines, Japan, China, and Korea. Stir-fry felt noodles for dim sum in the Chinese house. Have a tea party in the Japanese house. Or stamp cloth like traditional Indian fabric makers. And the “Tot Spot” has interactive activities for the youngest visitors, even pre-walkers.

Rainforest Adventures is the newest area in the Discover Center and includes a large water table (that looks like a waterfall), a climber where kids can look though binoculars and “watch” for rainforest animals, and also a toddler area specially for little ones under the age of three years old.

Kids can easily spend hours on end here, so plan ahead for snack times and bathroom breaks. Food, drinks, and gum aren’t allowed in the Discovery Center, so you’ll have to eat anything you bring outside. There is a café on site, too—and it’s cash-only.

I’m planning on buying a season pass for this place. It was THAT awesome!

Holy Expensive!

To be perfectly honest – KNOWING prices for things are higher here in Hawaii is different that SEEING those prices reflected in your bank account.

I need a coupon club! Eek!!

Hooray For Broken Laptops

Yeah, not really … I wrote out this long post for the blog the other day, then left the room to finish getting ready for work. Baby Girl (16 months) then apparently decided that the laptop better belonged on the floor. So, she knocked it off the side table.

I tried to turn it on but it wasn’t working right. I heard it trying to turn on – but wasn’t seeing anything on the screen.

Long story short – the monitor is broken. Which in my mind is way better than a hard-drive failure because I can replace the monitor; I didn’t have everything on the hard-drive backed up.

So, the Husband backed it all up – or it’s in the process of backing up as we speak. Might take awhile.

Urg … This sucks – but it could have been way worse!

Aside from having a broken laptop …. it’s been a nice couple days! It’s March 1st and about 80 degrees and super sunny! I guess I should get used to weather like this.

We got our orders to HAWAII!! 🙂