|Sitting together - BY CHOICE!|
Usually by the time February rolls around, I can't wait to escape someplace warm and beautiful. This year was strangely and noticeably lacking that urgency. Unlike the average winter in Seattle, we were more dry than not and saw more sun that we'd seen in years. It reminded me a lot of our second winter here...ski resorts barely open, crisp air and sunny skies, wondering if all that famed Seattle rain was ever going to hit. Plus, there was excitement in the air thanks to a second Seahawks Super Bowl. I won't go into the game itself....we all know what happened in those last few
seconds...but I will say that for the first time ever Chris, Lily and I watched a game together (Matteo opted for Tumble Leaf after about 5 minutes). We aren't a football family AT ALL, but I have to admit it was a lot of fun cheering for the home team together, eating terrible food (Doritos!) and, my favorite, watching the ads. Hanging out with Lily was truly a blast - she's funny, quirky, inquisitive and loves to laugh.
By the next weekend the rain was back and we were ready to head to Kaua'i and stock up on our Vitamin D. Matteo in particular needed to leave. The poor kid cannot stand wind and rain hitting him...which makes life as a Seattle toddler particularly challenging. To help himself stay dry while running pre-trip errands, he insisted on holding a small pastry bag over his head. He was incredibly proud of his ingenuity. I remain dubious of it's efficiency as a water-repelling device.
|Lily and Amigo|
Kaua'i was a gamble that thankfully paid off. Chris and I fell in love with Hanalei Bay last year, but being on the rainy end of the island there is always the risk of a vacation with nary a blue sky. We decided to roll the dice and oh wow did we luck out. It only rained once the whole time we were there, leaving us with near-perfect temperatures the rest of our stay. As an added bonus, the VRBO was SIGNIFICANTLY better than the last one and right around the corner from Grandpa's beach on the bay and a short walk to a river inlet that formed a tiny beach island for the kiddos. They loved the house, the beach, the outdoor shower, pretty much everything. I loved the short walk to town and amazing vanilla chai, the farmer market where I paid a mere $35 for a whole coconut, banana bread, cookies, Japanese eggplant, avocado, broccoli, spinach, tomatoes, and rambutan, the lush beauty and slow pace. None of us liked the roosters, but that's the price of paradise.
|Going down the river|
We decided that this trip we weren't going leave the north end of the island and never ran out of things to do - Kilauea Lighthouse, horseback riding (Lily's first time - she handled it like a pro!), the cave by Tunnels Beach, Anini Beach, mini golf through a botanical garden, paddle boarding, kayaking, beach, beach, and more beach. Even the flights were well-tolerated, which is especially impressive considering it's the furthest island and on the way there we were re-routed through Oakland due to headwinds so strong we needed to stop to refuel. The best part, though, was seeing my kids actually play together. No, they didn't suddenly have an epiphany that they like each other, but they did collaborate far more than they ever do at home and Lily showed true big-sis instincts, watching over Matteo when we were in the water, and pulling him back if waves came too close. That alone made the trip worth every dime.
Then we came home and went back to work and school....and spent the rest of the month wishing we were back in Hanalei Bay.
Which brings me to the quotes, totally out of order:
Matteo, picking him up from school his first day back: Can we go to the beach?
(I've gotten this a lot and OH BOY do I wish I could say yes!)
|This year's jaguar masterpiece|
Me, observing our spoiled pet: Oh Bob, you lead a hard life
Lily: Yeah! With Matteo it's a garbage can of horrors!
(She - sadly - has a point.)
Matteo, observing our new blue bedspread: Is that for the Seahawks players?
Lily: Mama, you and daddy are the best family ever. Matteo doesn't really help, but you guys are the best.
Me, at the baggage carousel: I'm looking forward to the day you and Matteo are old enough to pack your own bags and we will each be responsible for our own suitcases.
Lily, laughing at me: That will NEVER happen
Matteo, wading into the waters at Anini: I am going OUT to sea! OUT to seeeeaaaa!
Me: Matteo - look at the surfer!
Matteo: Oh! He's surfering!
Lily, after we got Bob back: NOW it feels like home!
(Couldn't agree more!)
Chris and I, discussing our plan to stay on the north end: This was our week just hang out and lay an egg
Lily: Lay an egg? But we'd just poop it out!
Matteo, pointing to his cement mixer: The food goes down the chute to your tummy and gets mixed ALL around (insert round and round hand gestures here) and comes back out as poop! Just like that (points again to mixer). That's right - that's what I'm talking about!
Hmmmmm...perhaps digestion is too prevalent a topic at Casa Lowe? Nahhhhh.