Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Vacation - next couple days

After visiting the highlands we kicked around the lowlands for a couple days. We stopped by the National Tropical Botanical Garden. Our kids were still a bit young for that, and we did get attacked a bit by the mosquitoes like they warned us (and so we put on the bug spray we bought from their office), but I still enjoyed the visit. This is a view from the shuttle into the valley where the garden is.

One of the things I learned is that some trees respond to the decreased sunlight in winter by dropping their leaves. That explained the leafless trees we saw there. And here we were wearing t-shirts and shorts and wondering how the trees could tell that it was wintertime, since for us it sure felt like summer.

Another thing I learned is that vanilla is really an orchid. That likes to be supported by something, like a tree in this case.

After the garden, we went to the Poipu kids beach and had a blast. Kids and one parent were on the kids beach (crowded, but we expected that), while the other parent snorkeled nearby. It was great.

In the late afternoon, we returned back to Salt Pond, and had some more beach time. Between the palm trees on the left is Martin coming back with Emilie from the kids beach there at Salt Pond. They were goofing off in the water and apparently having a lot of fun. That unfortunately resulted in nursemaid's elbow. We ended up going to the emergency room that evening, when they tried to restore it but did not, and again the next morning, when they managed to restore it, and she was just fine after that. Still, it did give her about twelve hours of wearing a sling. She felt very special then :). But she was also glad to get her use of her arm back.
PS: Top picture is the bark of a eucalyptus tree. Love those colors!
PPS: They had cocoa trees too. Yay!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Vacation - first couple days

We went to warm up in warmer climates for not quite two weeks over New Years. It worked great.

Main goal of the first couple days was to not get burned, and get a lot of sand time. First full day in Kauai we left our hotel, shopped for items, then went to find our campsite. Put up the tent, and went a few steps over to the beach and played. The rest of the five days we spent at that campsite we generally rolled out of our sleeping bags sometimes after sunrise, ate breakfast, and walked a few steps over to the beach and played. And played. And played. Then for lunch or early afternoon, we explored different parts of the island.Our tent in Salt Pond Beach Park on the south side of the island.

On New Years Eve in the early afternoon, we headed up to Waimea Canyon and to the Kalalau overlook, way above the coast that the NaPali trail follows. Kids had fun running on the wide path.

Looking into Waimea Canyon.