Friday, April 10, 2015

Final Hours In Maui- Day 9

After a whirlwind trip, it was time to head home. The wedding turned out great, our guests had made it safely home, we were blessed with some dramatic weather (good and bad!), and we had a couple days to relax before making our way back to the cold. Vince and I packed our bags, thanked our gracious hosts at Aloha Aku, and headed to Kahului for lunch before going to the airport.

Touted for its local fare, Da Kitchen was where we wanted to go

The interior was full of light- and filled up fast! Vince and I
got there just before it opened, so we were lucky enough to get a table

I had my reservations, but we had to try a few bites of the fried spam musubi

I settled on soup, and Vince tried the Loco Moco :)

Neither Vince nor I were ready to leave, but it was time to go. We dropped off the rental car and made our way back to the airport... a little sad that our trip was over, but happy that everything turned out so well. We made it through the wedding as a team and we were excited for our future- which I am happy to say is looking bright!

Road Trip- Day 8 In Maui

Our time in Maui was coming to an end, but Vince and I definitely made the most of our last full day on the island. We spent our morning doing a little window-shopping in Lahaina and then drove out past Napili to explore some places we hadn't been to yet...

A view of the coastline from the road

At one point, we noticed a few cars parked by the side of the road,
so we decided to see what the people could be looking at. No sooner did we
get out of the car than we were greeted by some people walking up a trail
from the ocean. They told us they had just seen a bunch of sea turtles!

Can you see the turtle's head poking out of the water? There were
at least ten sea turtles riding the surf in this little cove- super cool :)

Vince and I watched the turtles for several minutes before returning
to the car and heading to our next stop: a gorgeous beach in the Honolua-
Mokuleia Bay Marine Life Conservation District

LOVED this spot; I can't wait to go back... it was quiet,
secluded, and the sand was great!

We had fun making footprints before hitting the road again...

...found another trail to explore (note the coconut warning sign haha!)

Beautiful! I am always in awe of how spectacular the scenery is

The beach at the end of the trail

Another great view from the road

We continued down the highway in search of our next stopping point:
the pull-off for the Nakalele Blowhole and the "Heart Rock"

The trail down to the Blowhole was a bit treacherous, but we made it!
Pretty cool- the rocks here are partially situated over the water and the
ocean comes up through the bottom...thus creating a blowhole-like spout

It took a bit of searching, but we finally found the Heart Rock too :)

This was too cute- and it is a natural hole in the rocks!

Newlywed pic :D

As much as we would have loved to explore a bit longer, the
day was getting short and we had our "last supper" for the trip that
evening at Merriman's. We made our way there, freshened up
in a nearby resort, and headed inside to meet our hosts

The property was stunning

Warm bread with the best olive oil I have ever tasted

Hawaiian prawns in a spicy chile sauce- absolutely delicious

We finished our dinner, enjoyed a few cocktails, and admired the
view. We definitely saved the best restaurant for last; it was an impressive
experience for sure. The location was amazing, the food was fresh and full
of flavor, and the ambiance could not be beat. Happy with our dinner, we
made our way back to Kihei for one final stop before calling it a night...

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Cinnamon Rolls And Whale Watching- Day 8 In Maui

Feeling refreshed after our lazy day, Vince and I set out the next morning to meet Ben and Kate for breakfast at a place we were looking forward to checking out: Cinnamon Roll Fair...

The line extending out the doorway along the sidewalk was a good sign!

YUM. I can see why these are so popular! I SO wanted to eat two,
but I decided I'd better not make myself miserable lol. We finished our
breakfast with our friends, said our goodbyes (they were leaving that day),
and drove down to park at a trailhead by the beach; time to walk off some sugar!

It was another beautiful day

We finished our walk, watched the waves for a few, met up with
Vince's parents, and picked up Jodie- it was time for a whale-watching trip

A neat carving by the harbor

One of our guides reviewing safety info and
giving us some whale-watching tips

Jodie lookin' cute

Vince and I waiting to set sail

One of the first blowholes!

So cool- we saw a TON of whales; our trip was worth every penny

Vince and his parents scouting the water

We made it back to shore, did a quick loop around the harbor, and headed back to Monkeypod for the best Mai-Tais in Maui...


...another great day :)

Time To Chill- Day 7 In Maui

Ahhh. Sleeping, relaxing, and enjoying each other's company was the only thing on Vince's and I's "to do" list the day after our wedding; we were ready for a break! Although our time in Maui had been great thus far, our schedule had been almost non-stop. We woke up the next morning, enjoyed the view from our room, and headed down to the buffet (which was the BEST breakfast buffet I have been to). We had fun sampling the goods and proceeded to explore the rest of the property...


A pretty church on-site

We finished our walk just in time for our only appointment of the day-
a trip to the spa! What a treat that was! I could have spent all day there
if it wasn't so beautiful outside... the weather was too good to miss!

Feeling relaxed, Vince and I headed back to our room and packed our things to head back to our vacation rental. The Grand Wailea was beautiful, but we looking forward to getting back to our quiet little sanctuary. We spent a few hours soaking up the sun on the lawn and then decided to take a quick drive to Paia- the town where we got engaged last spring.

Such a cute little surfer town :) We walked up and down the main streets,
did a little window shopping, and headed back to Kihei to watch the sun set

Hawaii sunsets never cease to amaze me!

It was fairly late by the time we got hungry, and neither Vince nor
I felt like anything too fancy, so we decided to check out a local
burger place that featured grass-fed burgers...

The burgers hit the spot- the toppings were fresh, the meat was tasty,
and the taro rolls complimented everything nicely. Satisfied and happy,
we made our way back to our room and snuggled our way to sleep :)

The Reception! 2/14/15

Regardless of the torrential downpour outside, everyone made it safely to Aloha Aku (our rental property and reception site) in Kihei. I committed to take any obstacles with a grain of salt and was just happy that our wedding turned out so well. Vince and I had enough time to change clothes, pack an overnight bag for the evening, and discuss our options with our photographers before our guests began to arrive. 

Our drink options included pineapple champagne, pineapple
white wine, two red wine blends, local beer, soda, and water

Our coordinator/caterer did a great job of relocating our tables inside

The centerpieces turned out great!

Aww- Vince's parents surprised us with a sweet congratulatory sign :)

Vince and I with my dad and stepmom

The men patiently waiting for the party to start

The rest of our guests arrived shortly after I took this picture. Our caterers were just beginning to serve dinner when... the rain outside stopped! The weather went from blustery and rainy to calm in a matter of minutes! The clouds began to clear and the sun could be seen on the horizon. Amazing! Vince and I let our guests start their meals and rushed outside with the photographers to take advantage of the beautiful evening. I can't wait to see how their pictures turned out! That said, I was looking forward to the end of our marathon photo session by the time we were done- I had gone from preoccupied to famished (result of not eating since breakfast)!

Vince and I had a few minutes to try and eat dinner and then it was cake time. I'm not gonna lie- I was a little bummed I didn't get to eat more of the meal, but I was excited to cut the cake with my new husband :D

No cake-smashing for me- we did good!

Our guests finished their cake and then it was time for toasts and
more pictures. We were truly blessed; there were some great speeches

Hula show time! I am SO happy the rain stopped so our dancers
could make it! They were great- and the end of the show was a lot of
fun... they got everyone out on the lawn and taught us how to hula :)

From there it was time to lose the garter...

...toss it away, and have our first dance as husband and wife

As you can see, the day was a little crazy, but it turned out better than we could have hoped for. Vince and I spent a little more time visiting with our guests, said our goodbyes, packed our things, and headed off to The Grand Wailea for our wedding night :)

Nice touch! Fairytale ending...