I'm Dreaming of a Warm Christmas . . .

Our family was able to spend Christmas in Hawaii this year!
Chris and I arranged for the trip in early fall and surprised the kids the day before we left.
We just spent 1 week on the island, Oahu in a hotel on Waikiki Beach.

Friday, Dec. 20th
Our kids got home from school to start winter break.
We sat them down, and told them we had something special planned for Christmas this year,
for our 15th wedding anniversary this month.
Then, we gave the kids a 15 question quiz about our courtship and wedding.
Whomever got the most questions right, could open a present from us first.
There was a present for each child. Each present had something to do with Hawaii.
A swimsuit, sunscreen, a postcard, a can of pineapple, etc.
Then, the kids had to guess what the presents were for.
Lindy figured it out right away, the other kids weren't so sure.
"Why do I have pineapple?" "Sunscreen, what's this for?"
To tease the kids, Chris said, "Mom and I are going to Hawaii for our anniversary for Christmas".
They kind of looked at us strange, not sure what to say.
Then Chris said, "We're taking all of you, we leave tomorrow morning, we need to pack right now."

Saturday Dec 21st
Get up early to falling snow and drive to airport.
Flight delayed an hour to snow.
Board Plane, wait 2 hrs on plane (not moving) with air turned off inside plane to de-ice plane.
Deboard Plane wait 4+ hrs in Boise for a flight that may or may not take off.
Board a 2nd time for 6 hr flight. Arrive in Honolulu at 7 p.m. (10 p.m. Idaho time).

Sunday Dec 22nd
We toured Pearl Harbor. I learned 2000+ lives were lost that day on Dec. 7th.
Looked for a ward to attend, walked through a Botanical Garden, and watched the Sunset.

Monday Dec. 23rd
Get to Hanauma Bay early in the am.
Snorkel in the bay. Hotel pool in the afternoon. Attend Boise State b-ball game in the early evening.
(Our local b-ball & football team were in Hawaii for a b-ball tournament and bowl game.)


Tuesday, Dec. 24th, Christmas Eve
Attend Polynesian Cultural Center for day activities and evening dinner and show.

Wednesday Dec. 25th, Christmas Day
Went through our Christmas Stockings, and face-timed with family.
Swam at Waikiki Beach. Hiked Diamond Head Crater. Went to Hotel's Buffet Dinner.

Thursday, Dec. 26th
Toured the Dole Pineapple Plantation by way of train ride.
Visited the North Shore to watch Pro Surfers. NO Swimming allowed on those beaches in Dec.
Late Afternoon Beach Day at Kailua Beach, on other side of island. Safer waters.

Friday Dec. 27th
Flew home without delays.

**Special Notes if you're thinking of a family trip to Hawaii:
From the West Coast, a direct flight to Oahu is about 5-6 hours.
Depending on what state you're from and time zones there is 3 or 4 hour time difference.
Hawaii is behind. If it was 9 am in Hawaii then it was 12 noon in Idaho.
(This was helpful w/ traveling with kids, to get to touring spots first thing in the a.m.)
Oahu is the main island, (not the biggest island).
Honolulu is the big city on Oahu.
Waikiki is the beach in Honolulu. (The hotel strip with lots of tourists)

We got our own flights through Allegiant Air
You pay for your luggage. No movie or food service. (You can pay for snacks on plane.)
We brought our own snacks to eat during the flight.
Each child had their own backpack with snacks, activities.
Bring headphones and headphone splitters for shared movie watching.
We rented a minivan through our airline.

We used Betty Cox a family Hawaii travel agent to book our hotel and insure our trip.

We did all the touristy things for the week, which were fun, but, 
I wish we had stayed a couple extra days to relax more just on the beach.
The touristy things weren't really beach activities.
December is a crowded time of year to visit Oahu. Prices go up as well for airfare and lodging.
If I were to visit Oahu again or recommend it for you, I would get a house to rent near Laie or Kailua.

Leave a comment if you have any more specific questions.

1 comment:

Kathy said...

What a fantastic Christmas surprise and by the way, Happy Anniversary!

Your pictures are great!