Day 1: Hanauma Bay. This was Spencer’s favorite place. He loved snorkeling. We searched for sea turtles, but we couldn’t find them. But we saw a trumpet fish, sea urchins, maroon fish, yellow fish, purple fish. Waves smacked us and sucked us onto the coral, leaving us with scratches on our arms. It took a while to get used to the discomfort of the goggles and trust cheap plastic that let us breathe underwater. Max and Mira snorkeled with us. I looked back at them every two seconds.

We saw humpback whales in the distance. They jumped in the air for us. Kristen let me use her binoculars.

 Maxwell at the “Sweet Home” food joint where we sat outside with the family. He was having a teenage moment. He is thirteen now. He is allowed to have those moments.
He’s still pretty darn cute.

 A small, but strenuous hike up to two World War II bunkers and a beautiful view.

Inside the bunker. I’m assuming this is where they mounted their guns. Do you like the graffiti?

 Chillin’ at the top. Spencer and Harrison went to hike up to the second bunker. One bunker was good enough for us.

And finally what Max had been waiting for all day! Aoki’s shave ice! After 90 years in this spot, Aoki’s is relocating. I bought a mug with their building painted on it.

 In my journal it says “Mira and Harrison ordered _____.” So I’m not sure what they ordered. Max ordered the Hawaiian, I ordered the volcano, Spencer ordered the tropical.

 Day 2: Mom woke up when the sun rose to make banana-macadamia nut pancakes. We ate them with coconout milk, coconout syrup, guava syrup, or maple. I went with coconut syrup every time.

 The Ha’ula hoop hike. This hike is beautiful. So much to see. Mira and I held Maggie’s hand up the hike, until I lost Spencer and decided to run up.

Cousin Jack. He’s kind of cute. 🙂 Photo: Charles Plummer
Photo: Charles Plummer
Photo: Charles Plummer
We stopped at a beach to see a few turtles lying on the sand and swimming in the shallow water.

 Then shave ice again. The cousins sat on Dan’s rental convertible, being legit.

 The girlies.

 Day 3: Polynesian Cultural Center. We walked to the PCC and came across the LDS Hawaiian temple. The temple gardens are beautiful.

 Tina, an old friend from Gayla’s ward, got us into the PCC for half the price. Later in the day we got to see her perform as a bride in Tahiti and lead a few couples to renew their vows. (Spencer didn’t want to do it. Too much of a show for him. 🙂 )

 Us with the Polynesian dude and a couple Cambodians. When we told the PCC worker where we were from, he asked us if we ever went to the Salt Lake temple (instead of coming out and asking if we were Mormon). We got married there, we said. The PCC worker had also gone to the SLC temple when he was at the Missionary Training Center.
“What temple is this?” the Cambodian man asked.
“The LDS temple,” the PCC worker said.
“Oh, LDS.”
Everyone at the PCC is Mormon.

Day 4: Spencer celebrated his morning birthday on the sand. Maybe I should have written it. He beat me to it.
Photo: Charles Plummer
Dan drove us to Honolulu to eat at the Oceanarium, an expensive restaurant with yummy crab legs, Poke, and sushi. We got to ride in the awesome convertible. I look pretty fantastic if I say so myself.
 Later in the day we went to the Byodo-In temple. Mira said it was like spirited away. She reminded me that the last time we came, I told her it was just like the movie and she had to hold her breath over the bridge. What a mean sister, she said.

 (Isn’t it beautiful?)

 Birthday celebration! Spencer with his Star Wars lego X-wing. (Do you notice how big he’s smiling?)

 Then after we watched “Return of the Jedi” with Maxwell and my dad. I felt like I was four again. Do you know how many times I watched Star Wars as a child?

Day 5: Good morning, beautiful ocean. Good morning, beautiful house. 
Pali lookout. A battle was here against King Kamehameha and those on the Oahu island. Kamehameha conquered all of the Hawaiian islands.
Photo: Charles Plummer

Photo: Charles Plummer
Spencer wanted to go to a pineapple plantation for his birthday, but it rained the entire day on his birthday. The next day was sunny enough. (From this picture, it’s hard to tell if Spencer is extremely interested in the plants, or if he’s extremely disappointed.)
Photo: Charles Plummer

 After the plantation, I fell asleep for a good three hours. I caught the cold that had been drifting throughout the house. While I was gone, Spencer, Maxwell, and Mira created a sand castle “with Star Wars influences,” Spencer says. (It’s a sith temple.)

Photo: Charles Plummer

 And some boogie boarding. Mm hmm. Photo: Charles Plummer

Photo: Charles Plummer

 Day 6: We spent the morning at Shark’s cove, a place with volcanic, jagged rocks, and great snorkeling.

Photo: Charles Plummer
Photo: Charles Plummer
Photo: Charles Plummer
Then we hit up Waimea bay. We couldn’t jump on the rock this time because the waves were too big. I wish we had a water camera. There were huge waves. 
Photo: Charles Plummer
Photo: Charles Plummer


  1. What a fabulous vacation. I love these pics. You look fabulous in your black bathing suit and sunglasses.

  2. I don’t know whether to cry, because I miss you or to cry, because I’m not there. WAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH, But either way, the photos are a greattttt treatttttt. Love you all.

  3. Those ARE nice photos. Wherever did you get them?

  4. I L.O.V.E. these pictures. Brings back good times! Miss Hawaii so much!!!

  5. I know, Anni! It was super super fun. I wish you guys were there with us.

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