Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Maui Highlights

I just recently finished putting this little video together from our Maui vacation a few weeks ago. Hope you enjoy it!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

I can't believe we are in 2016 already. I am so excited for this year and everything it will bring us. I always love a fresh start!

This year I have set goals for myself that I am determined to achieve. It seems like every year my goals carry over to the next year, but I want to make sure that doesn't happen this time around. My father-in-law has brought up a great point about replacing "resolutions" with "goals." I love the word "goal" better because it is something you are trying to attain rather than resolve.

Some of my goals this year include exercising more, eating better, reading more books, going to bed earlier, waking up earlier, practicing self care, and buying a home.

What are your new year goals?

Image via Studio DIY

Monday, January 11, 2016

Christmas Time

What a crazy last few weeks it has been! We got back from NYC on December 19th and had a fun week of Christmas. It was a busy week with Dave working 4 days that week and me trying to unpack 7 weeks of luggage, wrap Christmas gifts, and get organized. It was a bit stressful, but everything worked out. Dave and I also got sick later in the week which was a huge bummer. We both woke up Christmas morning with colds. So sad! It was probably from all the stress and traveling that week.

We had a fun Moody Christmas party for my mom's side of the family at my parent's house. It was fun to see all of the relatives, eat a yummy dinner, and have a little talent show. Christmas Eve I was able to see my best friend Courtney who lives in Florida. We met up at Nekter in Aliso Viejo and it was fun to catch up with her. Later that day, my family played tennis for several hours and had a Christmas dinner altogether. We played games and watched movies which is always a tradition in the Kimball family.

Christmas day was wonderful, even though Dave and I were both sick. We had fun opening gifts with my family and watching my cute nieces light up. Christmas is so much more fun with kids! We then headed over to my aunt and uncle's house for a Christmas dinner. It was nice catching up with everyone since we were gone for 2 months in New York. After the dinner, Dave and I went straight home to get ready for our Maui trip with his family. We were leaving the next morning and had not packed yet. Luckily, we got it all done just in time.

Overall, Christmas was so much fun this year. I love that we get to reflect on the birth of our Savior and all that he has done for us. I hope to be a little more like Him every day.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Andrew Maui Trip

We just got back from our incredible trip to Maui! It was my first time on the island and I loved every minute of it. It was the first time the Andrew family has gone on a vacation altogether for a while since both Stephen and Will served 2-year missions and everyone is finally back. We left last Saturday the 26th (the day after Christmas) out of LAX. We had a direct flight to Maui and arrived in the late afternoon. We had dinner and went to bed that night.

Sunday we took a nice walk on the boardwalk near the beach and started planning for the week. We all stayed at the Royal Lahaina and had their yummy buffet breakfast each morning. It was nice to get in a great breakfast every day! I especially loved the fresh papaya and pineapple. I am a huge tropical fruit lover so I was in heaven. That afternoon, Dave and I went to a 2-hour timeshare presentation to get a huge discount on our car rental for the week. We were obviously not ready to buy a timeshare for $100,000 (who has that kind of money?!). But it was still interesting to hear about how timeshares work.

Monday we had another walk in the morning, ate a great breakfast, and headed down to the beach. We rented snorkel gear for the week so the boys went snorkeling while I read and relaxed on the beach for a while. It was so nice. That night, Dave and I went to my first luau at our hotel (he gifted that to me for Christmas). I really enjoyed all of the performances! The food was only ok, but that's what you get when you feed the masses. Overall, great night.

On Tuesday, the boys and I woke up early to go on a hike in West Maui. It was called the Waihee Ridge Trail hike and it was probably the hardest hike I have ever been on. Not only was it challenging and steep, but it was muddy the entire time. It probably rained earlier that morning or something. We were literally slipping and sliding our way to the top of this mountain. The views were beautiful from the top, though. I couldn't believe how high we were! After the hike, we went to the Olivine Pools to take a dip and rinse off all the mud from our bodies. It was such a cool place! The waves were crashing up against the rocks, and the pools were gorgeous. We loved that spot. The funny thing is we had to hike down these rocks to get to it, after just completing an intense 5-mile hike in the mud. I was exhausted! After the pools, we stopped at the Nakalele Blowhole which was amazing! I have never seen a blowhole like that before. The water shot straight up in the air every few minutes and it was a cool sight to see. There was also a rock to the right of the blowhole with a heart shape cut out of it which was fun to see. Our last stop was Napili Bay for a snorkeling sesh, although I was a party-pooper and stayed on the beach to watch our stuff and check emails. Overall, it was a very eventful day.

Wednesday was another epic day. We did the Road to Hana! Several people told us not to do it, but we were really curious to see what it was like. And I'm so glad we did. The drive was absolutely gorgeous. Everything was so green, and every few minutes we would have a beautiful view of the ocean and the coast. It took about 2.5 hours to get to our first stop at Wainapanapa State Park, which is a black sand beach. That beach was seriously so cool! I have never seen anything like it before. The greenery surrounding the beach was beautiful as well. There were fresh water caves right by the beach that we went to as well. The boys were adventurous and jumped right in to get the full experience. After the caves, we drove to the Seven Sacred Pools, however we didn't actually see them. Long story short, we followed some people on this hike thinking it would be a short one to see the pools. Nope! We ended up on a 4-mile hike to the Waimoku Falls, which was actually really stunning. We were bummed we went the wrong way, but it turned out to be fine. Once we got done with the hike, it started raining and we wanted to head back to Lahaina before it got dark on the Road to Hana (apparently you don't want to drive it at night... there are probably no street lights). We were so exhausted and hungry (didn't eat lunch) so we stopped for dinner at Da Kitchen on our way back to the hotel. It was a long day, but so glad we got to see everything we did!

Thursday was New Year's Eve so we just relaxed and snorkeled most of the day. We went snorkeling at Lahaina Beach right outside our hotel. We saw some pretty fish and two turtles! The boys and I jumped off Black Rock which was fun. That night, we had a New Year's Eve dinner at Lahaina Grill which was amazing. It was fun to celebrate with a nice meal.

On Friday, it was New Year's Day so we just relaxed on the beach, read books and enjoyed our last day of vacation since we were leaving the next day. We ended the day playing some fun card games. Saturday we went to the beach in the morning, packed and got ready to leave for the airport by 1pm. I was sad to leave, but excited to get back to normal life again. With New York, Christmas, and now this Maui trip, we have been in la-la land for a while. I am excited to get back to a routine and being productive this year.

Here's to 2016!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

NYC - Week 7

Our 7-week adventure has ended! I am so sad, but I am also so excited to go back home to normal life. I can't believe we lived in NYC for 7 weeks. It was really the best time of my life. Such a cool experience. I felt like I was on a really long vacation the entire time. Ha! I am just so grateful I was able to join Dave on this experience. I have no regrets.

This past week was pretty slow, but still fun. On Sunday, we went to church with Jason and Annie just for Sacrament meeting. The ward had their Christmas Program that day which was cool to see. We sang a lot of Christmas songs as a congregation and listened to some amazing messages. We stayed after for a potluck brunch and to say goodbye to a few friends we made here, while Jason and Annie headed out to Central Park. We met up with them after for a quick lunch at Patsy's Pizza. Dave and I shared a salad and had a few slices of pizza since we weren't starving. Jason and Annie had to leave around 2 for the airport, so we said goodbye to them and relaxed the rest of the day. Dave took a really long nap and since I can't nap, I just hung out and caught up on emails.

Nothing really exciting happened on Monday and Tuesday. On Wednesday, I finally went running in Central Park, which was on my bucket list for this trip! I can't believe it took me so long to do it, especially since we've had really good weather here in New York. I took the subway up to the park and ran 2 miles through it. It was actually really fun and therapeutic! The park is starting to look more winter-y with all of the leaves fallen and just branches on the trees, but it was still really pretty and scenic. When we first got to New York, we went to Central Park on our first Saturday and the trees were full of orange, red, and yellow leaves. They were the prettiest fall colors I've ever seen. After my run, I came home, got ready and headed out to run a few errands. I walked over to the original Macy's in Herald Square since I've never been to it. They had cool window displays of Charlie Brown which was cute. The inside was stunning! Their decorations are some of the best I've seen in any department store. I also headed to Doughnut Plant in Chelsea because I couldn't leave the city without getting a few of their delicious gourmet donuts. I tried their creme brulee donut and holiday mint donut which were both really good. I loved the creme brulee one! I then came home and had Shake Shack for dinner. As you can see, I have basically had the best diet while in New York (NOT).

Thursday was a catch up day. Friday was spent doing our last-minute NYC bucket list items. I went Christmas shopping in the morning, met up with Dave after he got off early around 1pm, went to the LOVE sculpture, finally tried the peanut butter sundae at Serendipity (which was HEAVENLY), went to dinner at Saxon + Parole (which was so good - highly recommend!), and last but not least, met up with our dear friends Scott and Kylee at the Rockefeller tree for a quick hello/goodbye! It was so fun seeing them several times while in New York.

The next morning Dave and I went to City Bakery for a quick bite to eat and to try their hot chocolate. It was a really rich, thicker hot chocolate that I wasn't a huge fan of, but it was still good. We then took a taxi to the airport and kissed the city goodbye! I am so sad to leave, but excited to be home just in time for the holidays.