Our Staples

I want to say that we are big adventurers.
That we are out there looking for all that is new and different.
But the truth is in Maui that is just not us.
There are things we find ourselves doing year after year that we come here. They have become our staples.

We started going to the Maui Ocean Center a few years ago. It is an aquarium that highlights the diverse sea life in Maui. It can easily be done in a morning and is very kid friendly. And thanks to Disney’s Octonauts my daughter knows more about random sea creatures than I do so she made a great tour guide. She even managed to wow some Australian tourists by rattling off the name of the Hawaii state fish, Humuhumunukunukuapua`a.

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We then went to Aloha Mixed Plate, like we do every other day in Maui.

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This is a low key, all outdoor, and reasonably priced place to eat breakfast, lunch or dinner on the island. They have a good happy hour daily from 2-6 and offer a daily drink special for $5.

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I think we have had closes to everything on the menu. The most popular thing is the Mixed Plate which is always good. Yesterday we got the Chow Fun. This is a mix of well cooked noodles, pork, bean sprouts and green onions in a light sauce.

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I got the teriyaki beef. All the plate lunches come with a side of macaroni salad and white rice. They are filling and around $9-$12.

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Next door is the Old Lahaina Luau, which is one of the best luau’s on Maui. If you head to Aloha Mixed Plate at night you can listen to the music while you dine.

Cows and Carousels

In my quest to get out and live more this year we went to Tilden Park for a weekend adventure. It has a great classic carousel and a small farm for the kids. I learned a few key pieces of information on this trip.

1. My husband, although living here most of his life, does not know how to dress “weather appropriate”.

2. I was raised in close proximity to bovine…….My family was decidedly not.

The carousel is a great vintage ride with interesting animals to choose from. I mean who doesn’t want to ride a giant chicken while racing a frog, while being chased by a lion.DSC_2374 DSC_2376

The ride went surprisingly fast, slowly gaining speed over a 3 minute ride.The un-pictured flower-pot shaped car that my daughter talked my husband into getting into on the last ride, went a little too fast for a little too long for him. My daughter was of course unphased. Ah youth.DSC_2388 DSC_2390 DSC_2391 DSC_2392We then made our way to the little farm. Here is a place where parents can bring their kids and Trader Joes celery and lettuce to feed the “barnyard animals”. Like you do on a real farm.

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The appropriately placed nondescript piece of farm equipment. So rustic.DSC_2404

Of course there were goats. Which we had to stop and see. I love those crazy eyes.DSC_2405 DSC_2406

This is when we learned the difference between my husband and myself, aside from the “aren’t sheep and goats the same type of animal” comment earlier in the trip. He was apparently blissfully unaware that a cow’s tongue was “that” long and “that” strong. I of course thought to myself “Of course they are”.

I am not saying that these are critical life lessons to have but they came in handy for me this time. DSC_2411All in all a great trip and some value bovine skills for my husband and daughter to learn. City folk.

Adventure for Two

So with the thrill of our last adventure less than a week behind us I planned something new for us.

An Adventure for Two.

Yes, that is right we went out sans our precious little one. I am reminded of how witty my husband can be.

We started at a favorite local brewery.

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There was severe disappointment on the trip when the hand fan museum was unexpectedly closed.

DSC_1902So we consoled ourselves with some wine tasting. It was beautiful and the winery was amazing. 
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We toured a little town. It was super cute and had this amazing bridge.
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There was amazing food. A great local farm to table restaurant.

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And the amazing hotel we stayed at actually brought breakfast to the room in the morning. Can’t tell you how nice that was. It was worth the trip just for the breakfast.DSC_1943A quick trip to the beach. And yes that does look EXACTLY like the scene from Goonies. And yes we did do a little piece of the movie.

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I took this picture for my daughter with her Lego mini fig. Let me tell you this seagull was about two seconds away from actually eating this mermaid. It screamed at me as a grabbed it and ran back to the car with my husband laughing at me.DSC_1958

This picture is just to document the moment right before my husband tried to back us over a cliff to read a historical marker. FYI it was not a historical marker but rather a sign warning of the amount of cougars in the area. So my death would have been in vain.

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Last minute adventure

I am a planner even when it comes to our new sense of adventure this year. So I even surprised myself when we decided to take a very last minute adventure to Disneyland. It was so last minute we were deciding on the way to my daughter’s school how we were going to tell her we were leaving at that very moment.

Things I learned on this trip:
1. When you trust your husband to pack the toothpaste you will end up brushing your teeth with sparkle crest for kids for two days.
2. The post 4 o’clock, no nap meltdowns at Disney are epic but can be cured with a Churro.
3. The heartfelt hug from my daughter saying thank you for “The most amazing adventure ever” is enough to make my sore feet and exhaustion fade away.

The adventures so matter how big or small are a reminder that time is precious and a reminder of that child like sense of wonder we sometimes lose as we move through our fast paced days. And sometimes it is good to find yourself also giggling on the Tea Cups at 9:45 in the morning after you just ate a Dole Whip.

Happy Adventuring.

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Getting out there

Disclaimer: This post is a self gradulatory vignette. I was so proud that I was actually working on a resolution I had to post this.

I am so guilty of spending my weekends doing life maintenance stuff, going to Target, the grocery store.

So this is the year we are going on adventures, to remind ourselves of all the amazing things there are to see in this world.

Here are a few pictures from our first ‘Adventure Day”!
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