Sunday, December 5, 2010

My Weekend

My weekend was mostly mega cleaning (laundry, dishes, bathroom, kitchen, vacuuming, tidying up), getting rid of things I don't need anymore, the slightest bit of grocery shopping, blogging, and these three things:


{Joel}


{Crafting - part of my button collection}


{Cat time - Gibbs}


{and Baby Girl}

I think I watched maybe 4 hours worth of Family Ties, and only left the house once. No regrets! I love Winter!

Love,
Sarah

PS. No Spending Hiatus update this week -- since the last one, I haven't spent any money! Actually, I might be done with them all together, though privately not spending. Turns out, now that I actually don't have any money to spend, it's not as hard (or tempting) to shop or drop any cash. Go figure!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Halo Benders, Our Weekend, and Spending Hiatus: Week Three!

I never would have thought that I would ever get to see The Halo Benders, but after rumors of them playing with Built to Spill and The Hive Dwellers, it showed up on the board of the Capitol Theater the day of, and dang! Calvin went over-and-beyond nice, and got Joel and I into the show. We ran into tons of friends (below), and I can't tell you how incredible it was, but I can show you video so that you can see for yourself! Please see below on this, as well! :)























Earlier in the day, our sweet friend, Andrew, invited us over to his house for a small potluck, and Joel rushed to make pico, which we brought, along with some locally-made chips. Mmmm. The rest of the food was ridiculously yum, with pumpkin lasagna, rice pilaf, tiramisu, macaroons, mushroom cookies, quinoa salad, and some sort of bean dip. People in Olympia really know how to cook the good stuff! It was also fun, because we met so many beautiful and kind new friends! I love potlucks!












The rest of the day was spent snuggling with our baby kitties, and hanging out in the snow. AND IT KEEPS SNOWING. We've gotten a couple of inches already! What!

And on the Spending Hiatus front, there's not much to talk about! Look at that! TONS OF FUN AND NO MONEY SPENT! Day 23 of no eating out. Week Three was awesome, and life is feeling gooooooooood.



Love,
Sarah

Friday, November 5, 2010

Hawaii Trip 2010: Day Four, Five and Six!


I started out the day by walking down the strip to get some frozen yogurt. They had all of the Hawaiian fruit to add to it, along with really yummy fruity flavors (and coconut!). I decided to head back up along the coast to check out what I hadn't seen yet, and found an old park with really old ruins. Not really what I'm interested in seeing, but I walked around a little bit and checked it out. Actually pretty cool.










As I got closer to the top of island, I stopped to check out the King Kamehameha statue, which again, pretty cool, but not really my thing. I moved on towards 'Upolo Point, stopped at every turn-off, and then turned around and headed back down to go snorkeling!







What's this guy doing? (haha!)



Cowsssss.



I stopped at Spencer Beach, which I don't think you can tell, but it was really just lots of nice, white sand. It was right next to Hapuna Beach (the Waikiki of the Big Island), but it was crowded, and this one was mellow. I met a couple of really nice ladies (one from 30 minutes away from where I live, ha!), and we waded around and talked about things to do. They told me about another beach right down the street from my hotel . . . so I went!
The view from my last hotel room!
This is the beach that they told me about. I can't remember the name, but I definitely remember having been once when I was 13. It was awesome! It was pretty shallow (not like the Black Sand Beach), but I could pretty much stand up the whole time if I wanted to. And there were sea turtles! And big, colorful fish! And if you swam out far enough, coral. It was pretty good, especially for being so close to me. I went back a few times after.
And then I went back to my favorite snorkel spot (I think people call it two steps, or three steps, because when you get in and out, you have to step up a couple of ledges), and pretty much spent forever there. I could snorkel every day for the rest of my life and be happy. So relaxing, and it just feels so nice.
I dedicated all of day six to the wedding, which was beautiful! I won't post those pictures here until they're edited (if at all -- I might forget!), but it was really nice. And the last day that I was here, I decided to go snorkeling, again, to all of my favorite places. Afterwards, I psyched myself up again, and went back to the Black Sand Beach to snorkel with those turtles, and then returned to snorkel my favorite spots. Definitely my favorite part of the trip ever. I love snorkeling! (duh!)
To bring my trip to a close, I headed to the Sheraton, where they have a Manta Ray viewing area. The manta rays show up between 8-9:30pm every night to feed on the rocks around it. I guess they're attracted the lights. Actually, you can go out into the ocean and swim with these massive dudes in the dark. You bring flashlights, and they'll come up and swim around you -- some of them are as big as a 6' tall person. Totally scary, but it would probably be unforgettable. It was pretty cool though -- I didn't stick around too long, but I did watch a couple of manta rays circling around. Can you see them? Sorry for the lousy pictures -- it was at night, and didn't have a tripod. They're the things in the middle -- gray on the top, and white on the bottom!


As I left, it started pouring, and didn't stop until the morning. I headed back to my hotel, and walked across the street for dinner, and back to my room to gather my things together and pack. The next morning, I walked down the strip for the final time, getting fro yo in again for breakfast, and sitting along the water while eating it. Turns out, the Kona Farmer's Market was still happening, so I walked through, looking at jewelry and trinkets. I hadn't bought anything other than gifts for other people on my trip, so when I found a simple little ring, I bought it. It was my birthstone in the middle (peridot), with small little turtle feet, a head and tail in silver. Pretty adorable. I made it back to the hotel, returned the rental car, and waited for my flight, three hours early. Security was pretttty easy. Then I spent the next 10 hours in airports and on the plane. It was a pretty epic and relaxing vacation (the only that I've ever taken alone), but I kind of hope that someone can come with me next time. :)
Love,
Sarah

Hawaii Trip 2010: Day Three!

Hilo!
This was the inside of my hotel room at the Hilo Seaside Hotel. It was totally cute and clean, but look at the windows -- can you see them? They aren't real windows! They lead to the outside and pool area of the hotel, but don't actually really close. I felt like I couldn't even turn the tv on or talk on the phone while I was there (not that I had reception anyway). You could hear every single word anyone was saying. Not my favorite, but still not a bad place to stay.
The outside of the hotel, it was really nice during the day!
The first thing I did that morning was head to Rainbow Falls. See the little rainbow in there? It's no coincidence. :)
And then back to town to figure out what I was doing. Of course I stopped at the thrift store, and wanted to take this home so bad. I took a picture instead.
I decided to walk around downtown and went to the Farmer's Market, since I was down there.


I bought a bag of these fruits (I'm not sure what they are??), spring rolls, and an ice-cold lemonade for lunch and snacks.

I also brought home a brand-new, quality (not touristy) ukulele for Joel's birthday present!
After the Farmer's Market, I decided that I had seen enough of Hilo and started back towards Kona. I took the scenic 4-mile drive because, why not? SO BEAUTIFUL. Probably on my top things that I did. It was gorgeous!

More butterflies.

I'm obviously on the wet side of the island!


And then I made it to Akaka Falls to walk around and check out the waterfalls. So pretty!










I took the road towards Waimea and found a nice little park with surfers!

Greenest pastures on the island.

Pretty blue waves.


I stopped at the Waipio Valley lookout to check out gorgeous view (there is a black sand beach down there too!), but only 4-wheel drive vehicles are allowed to drive down into the valley. This unfortunately, would have violated my car rental agreement. This also prevented me from driving to Mauna Kea.


More turkeys!

Got caught in a small rainstorm, which was actually really pretty.

And I made it back to my hotel, stopping along the road at the White Sands Beach. More surfers!

I decided to walk to dinner, and you couldn't have asked for better weather. I ended up getting a Hawaiian grilled chicken burger, with a few chocolate macadamia nuts. Mmmm! When I finally made it back to my hotel room (back at the Royal Kona), I discovered a new friend on the ceiling above my bed . . . a gecko!
I called housekeeping to come take him to a new home, and made my way to the pool to swim around at sunset and watch the Luau happening right next to me. Kind of awesome! The sun went down around 6pm every night , so it was real easy to just relax and get to bed early (to wake up early!). Kind of my favorite schedule ever. Why is it so hard to do that when I'm at home??

Love,
Sarah