June 17, 2011

Final Day of School

As I mentioned in previous posts, these last few weeks have been filled with so many fun activities highliting the boy's accomplishments over the last year. 

On their final day of school they had an all school assembly.  The room was packed, with standing room only.  The fifth graders were at the back room facing front (sitting on chairs, cause they are special), then were the 4th graders, followed by each grade in front of them, with the kindergartners at the front of the room.  

Each grade did a special musical number ranging from singing, to line dancing, to a tagolic drum number, and they were all really good!!

The principal gave a wonderful address to the kids, and then special tributes were made to teachers retiring or leaving.

Then each grade from 4th grade on, stood up and was formally graduated to the next class.  It was so fun to watch them cheer each other on. 

Finally they made a path in the middle of the room, and the teachers came together.  All the 5th graders walked through and graduated on to middle school, while all the other students sang to them.  It ended with applause.

We have had an amazing experience at this school, and feel so blessed for the opportunity to be here.  They've had some great teachers which have made a great impact on my boys.  What a terrific school year we had!!

**Below is a video of the 5th graders, if you want to fast forward to see Daniel, he is right after the 2 minute mark.  He's officially in middle school now!!

June 16, 2011

Long Beach

On Saturday morning we woke up, had breakfast, threw the kiddos and Bailey (the dog) and any other needed items in to the truck and started off our journey to Long Beach, WA. 

For lunch we had yummy fish 'n chips, and then we drove into town.  The downtown streets were crowded with tourists, so we drove a little north to the next "beach access" sign.  We made a left, turned on the 4 wheel drive, and drove onto the beach to find the perfect spot.  We passed a few groups and then we saw lots of empty space.  Perfect!!

It was a beautiful warm sunny day, with plenty of wind, perfect for kite flying.  Two kites immediately flew into the air, and because there was so much wind, even the little ones got in on the action.  Then came frisbies, soccer balls, and volleyballs.  Daddy and the kiddos built forts, and then we dug a hole in the sand and started a fire.  Hot dogs and s'mores were on the menu.  With full tummies, worn out kiddos, and a worn out puppy dog, we packed up and drove home.

It was a beautiful fun family day at the beach.



The drive home was great!!  Dave and I spent almost the entire time talking to our almost middle schooler about what was ahead of him this next year.  It was such an open conversation, and we discussed especially how important it was to be "in the world, but not of the world".  I know that he is ready for the challenges ahead of him, and I am so proud of the young man he is becoming.

June 15, 2011

Caleb's Father's Day Performance

Last Friday all the Dad''s were invited in for a special Father's Day Performance.  They were first sung to by Caleb's Kindergarten class, then the were given handmade treats, and finally tasty treats to snack on.  They finished with recess with the Dad's.  Dave loved hanging out with his little guy, and Caleb was absolutely beaming when he told me all about it.


June 14, 2011

Lunch Money

These last few weeks of school have been filled with art shows, class performances, parties at nearby parks, and awards presentations.


Below is a clip from Josh's 2nd grade Poetry performance.  The title is Lunch Money (you may have to crank the volume a bit).  They each had to memorize, and recite a poem that had to do with school.

June 9, 2011

Hawaii - Zip Line

Our last big adventure on the island was zip lining.  We decided to book through Big Eco Island Adventures, and it was so worth it.  Our guides were hilarious, and so fun, and the lines were amazing. 

We had 8 ziplines, and 2 bridges (one a suspension bridge). We started out at base camp in Hawi, Hawaii and then took a Pingzauer (6 wheel drive swiss army vehicle) offroad to our destination along the North Kohala mountainside.  The lines started out small (to get us used to it), and got bigger as we progressed.  Our final line was almost 1100 ft long, and went over a huge ravine.  Such a fun exhilariting experience!!


June 7, 2011

Hawaii - Exploring the Island

The next day we set out to explore the island.  Armed with our rental car, and guide book we were on our way.  We first had a wonderful "hawaiian style" breakfast at a cute cafe along the way, and then our first stop was the Alkala Falls State Park, where we took in the beautiful views of the waterfalls, and the lush tropical greenery.


Then we made our way down to Hilo, where we visited Coconut Island, and took in the local farmers markets, and shops.  It was so crazy to see lava that had flowed hundreds of years earlier still so present.  From there we travelled to the Volcano National Park.  A lot of the park was closed off for safety due to activity, and again so crazy to think that there are active volcanoes still flowing underground, and above on this island.  We walked through the lava tube, which was cool and a little freaky at the same time (it was pitch black at the end!)


After that we headed north to the infamous Waipi'o Valley.  This valley is one of the most sacred on the island, and almost impossible to reach.  There is a 25% grade hill that leads down into the valley.  Only a few homes have access to phone, and electricity, and the rest live off the land.  This is also where famed King Kamehameha was hidden after he was born because others feared he would become a great leader. Guess they were right to be scared!!


June 6, 2011

Hawaii - Hotel, Snorkeling and Luau

We arrived home from Hawaii almost two weeks ago, and it already seems like a distant memory.

We had an amazing time.  The hotel was beautiful, and exploring the island was so much fun, and it was amazing to see how the different parts of the island were so diverse.

I wanted to post some pictures, and promise to have the rest up before the end of the week (just as soon as I finish this mountain of laundry, and a few woodworking projects I started)


These are some pictures (and yes I took these), of the amazing ridicoulously huge hotel that we stayed at, that spanned over 62 acres.  Did I mention that we needed a tram to get from the lobby to our room.  (or walking took about 15 minutes)

It had three large pools complete with water slides, a lagoon that we snorkled in and saw sea turtles, waterfalls, dolphin exhibits, and over a dozen restaurants.  It was really amazing, and maybe even a little too fancy schmancy for us (ok maybe a lot) but it was fun!!

After spending the first few days enjoying the hotel and it's many amenities, we were ready to get out and explore.  We signed up for an all day snorkeling trip with the Fair Wind


We arrived early got our gear, and set sail for the Kealakekua Bay.  We arrived at the underwater state park, and the site of the Captain Cook monument.  It was breathtaking, and so clear.  The visibility was over 90 feet.  After spending an hour or so in the water we feasted on a barbecue, and then spent the last few hours getting in all the snorkeling we could.  We also took a few rides on the slide fixed to the back of the boat, as well as the high dive.  It was an amazing adventure.


Later that evening, we attended the Luau at the hotel. We watched as they pulled the roasted pig from the ground, and then we filled up on the succulent eats offered.  Dave and I also enjoyed a few virgin pina coladas, and strawberry daiquiris, we're such goofs.  The entertainment was fun, and we loved anything with fire the best.
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