Out with the old…

So. 2012.

Really you weren’t so bad. Or at least you didn’t start off that way.

January we stayed busy in Spain with Three King’s Day, Puerto Sherry, and eating at my favorite 100 Montaditos.

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February was Mckenna’s Rainbow Birthday which was SO much fun to do and a day trip to Vejer de la Frontera.

The 'new' part of the town.

The ‘new’ part of the town.

March brought basketball, homemade hot sauce and a scrapbooking getaway for me.

The girls!

April was a super busy month for us with an ER visit, beach days, Easter, zoo trips, children’s theater, goat farm, hosting my first bunco and FERIA!

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May was even MORE feria, Mother’s Day, a trip to the bee farm and a photo session from one of friends!

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In June Omar reenlisted in the Navy, I had my going away lunch at work, we celebrated Father’s Day, took a day trip to Portugal, I graduated, and we had our last week in Spain.

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July, oh July. We left Spain (and left part of my heart there), moved to Hawaii, saw tragedy in Colorado, went to Hanauma Bay for the first time (of many!), and the kids started school!

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In August we finally got to move into our new house, hit up the North Shore, snorkled, got a Harley, and swam with a sea turtle for the first time!

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September. My month of woe. We spent some time at Kaneohe Bay, Omar turned 5, and we found out daddy was deploying. Daddy deployed.

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October saw more beach days, bird rescues, the end of my football season, a month down of deployment, a port call in Malaysia for Omar, and a great Halloween for the kids.

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In November we hit our four month mark of living in Hawaii, Mckenna made it to regionals with her robotics club, we elected Barack Obama for a second term, my husband got older, I got older, I hit my one year blogging anniversary, we hit our 11th wedding anniversary, and the kids and I spent Thanksgiving in California.

One. More. Bite. Of. Pie!

In December we lived through another tragedy, I baked WAY too much, took a million pictures of the kids at the beach, threw a party, and had a wonderful Christmas.

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2012 it’s been real. Peace out.

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Living in Hawaii {4 Month Update}

We have officially hit four months of living in Hawaii.

And I am in love with this state.

Hawaii can be a difficult place to live. It is so very different than living on the mainland. It can be hard to not have every store and restaurant you are used to having around the corner. (No Olive Garden, Michael’s or Chik-fil-a!) Living here means that you are living far from family, at least a 5 hour plane ride away. It can be expensive, housing is expensive, food is expensive, we are on an island so you will pay more for everything. We are lucky to be able to shop at the commissary and exchange which offer a huge savings over shopping on the local economy.

But with all that it is still magical to live here. I will be driving and then all of a sudden see a gorgeous rainbow, a vibrant green volcanic range, or a stunning sunset over the beach.

We did come here with a bit of an advantage. After living in Spain for four years we learned to live without many of the American conveniences that people complain about not having here. Plus we’ve been living far from family. So when we moved from Rota to Pearl Harbor it was awesome for us! We had Target and Starbucks and T-mobile…

It is like most places for me, it depends on what you make of it. If you spend your time here complaining about how much you hate it, you’ll end up hating it.

We’ve had a great time getting out and exploring the island, learning about the culture and customs and eating!

Don’t get me wrong it’s far from perfect here, the DMV is a nightmare, the traffic is the worst, and the bugs are out of control. There are shady parts of the island, it sucks being 6 hours behind all my friends and family on the east coast (especially when your husband deploys!)

I have found some fun friends by stepping outside my comfort zone and playing football, volunteering with the PTA and getting together a FRG for the Paul Hamilton.

The only thing that would make it better would be if my husband were still here to explore the island with me!

Kaneohe Bay – Pyramid Rock Beach

 

One of the first things you learn when you move to Oahu is how the island is divided. Down the center of the island runs a mountain range (gotta love all that volcanic activity!). The north eastern side of the divide is the windward side, it gets all of the winds and moisture. The southwestern side (where we live) is the leeward side, not as cool and much drier. This becomes very apparent when you go from one side to another. I LOVE the windward side! It is so lush and green and every time I see it I feel like I am in Jurassic Park (because it was filmed here!)

 

 

 

This is the tunnel that cuts through the mountains, it is fairly new and is much easier than having to drive all the way around or over! And when you pop out of the tunnel this is what greets you:

 

The hills all have those distinct ridges due to erosion, all of the rain has carved the rock.

 

 

 

We were looking for someplace to snorkel over on the Marine Corps base at Kaneohe Bay but there wasn’t really anything suitable so we headed to Pyramid Rock Beach. It was a beautiful breezy day but the surf was really rough and we were advised by the lifeguard to stay shallow and keep our kids close.

 

 

Yes, I know it is all beach and ocean pictures all the time but seriously, this has been my life! We have spent a disgusting amount of time at the beach, but isn’t that what you are supposed to do when you live in Hawaii?

 

 

My gorgeous girl. This was the only picture I have where she isn’t posing like she’s trying out for America’s Next Top Model.

 

 

Oh this boy, he melts my heart.

 

 

Pyramid Rock, I wanted to go see if we could hike up the stairs but as you can see it’s REALLY far away and I am incredibly lazy. I bet the view from up there is great! 

 

 

 

Super crowded beach, I don’t know how we deal with the masses of people. Seriously though, I love going to beaches on base.

 

 

 

 

 

We also stalked a crab… cutest thing ever.

 

 

And the weirdo dog that was happy as hell to eat the leftover ice from the ice chest. Also please ignore my dirt back yard. My gardening stuff isn’t here yet, give me a couple of months and it will be beautiful!

 

Our house… at the moment.

So I know before moving into this neighborhood I was dying to find out what the inside of the houses looked like. At the moment we still have our loaner furniture, we have hardly any of our own stuff at all and it’s pretty much empty. But! It’s better than a hotel room!

So here are some pictures:

Front of house

 

Side of house, and tiny yard

 

Back of house, garage (two car!)

Dining room and kitchen

 

 

Den, forgot to take a picture of the living room but it’s the same size as this and is open plan to the dining room and kitchen

 

Entry way, front door, coat closet, bathroom, storage under the stairs

 

Looking toward front door, standing in living room, stairs up to second floor

 

Top of stairs, cabinet thing (linens, I don’t even know?) in the hallway next to kids bathroom

Top of stairs, we’ll be sticking a desk here for the kids, also a nice big storage room.

Mckenna’s room

 

Omar’s room

 

Master, please note that the kids bed’s were made and mine isn’t. Wonderful.

 

Master bath

 

Master closet, it’s actually off the bathroom which is nice. LOTS of space.

 

 

So there it is, can’t wait to actually get our stuff so we can make this house our own. I’ve been meaning to get some paint for the kids rooms and get that done before all of our stuff gets here.  It’s nice to go from under a thousand square feet to over 1,700. Lots more room to stretch out!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We have a house!

So we moved into our house this week, it has been WONDERFUL to get out of a hotel room. Everyone needed a door to close to get away from everyone else. I love my children but I am really, really glad that I can send them upstairs to play, or to the park right behind our house.

We have some hideous awesome temporary furniture that we get to use until our stuff gets delivered. But really, it’s nice to have beds, a couch and a table and chairs. The same day we moved in we had our temp furniture delivered, our express shipment delivered and had satellite tv hooked up.  So we at least have enough stuff to cook and get through the next month. It’s been great to be able to cook dinner again. It’s going to be a long time until we eat fast food!

There is a LOT that I want to do to this house. I really want to paint some walls but we have to get approval first… Also our (tiny) yard is pretty much just red dirt. So I am really looking forward to getting some grass seed in there and doing some gardening. I have a little papaya tree in my front yard and I am hoping I can actually get it to produce some big ol’ papaya.

Oh, and one of the perks of living in Hawaii? I found a roach today in my kitchen. Since we have hardly any food it must have already been here. Needless to say I was throwing up in my mouth, I have NEVER had to deal with roaches before! First thing tomorrow I am calling maintenance to have them come spray the crap outta my house. I can deal with ants and spiders but roaches are a deal breaker.

Need to take some pictures to show, but we’ve been so crazy running around getting errands done. Really looking forward to relaxing and settling in!

Keeping busy

We’ve been trying to keep busy the past couple of days. The more time we spend out of the hotel room the better, the kids are ready to kill each other. Our pool at our hotel is fine, but it gets really crowded sometimes and the kids are crazy! The sad thing is, most of them are military kids!

I found this lighthouse (?) while driving around getting lost on Hickam, it’s right next to the elementary school. I don’t know what it is there for but it looks really cool.

Today at the Pearl pool… Both kids were bored within an hour so we decided to take off and find something else to do.  They are so spoiled from going to the Rota pool and knowing EVERYONE there. Being the new kid sucks and not knowing anyone sucks, too. I get it! I have no friends here either!

So we found our way over to the beach on hickam. (A detour here and there to get there, my plan of attack, just follow along the water!) It’s not huge but the water was beautiful!  Mckenna was SUPER disappointed that she couldn’t go out on a paddle board by herself. We’ll have to go back with daddy so we can double up.  I’m still dying to try it.

Mckenna is miserable here.

So am I. Life is rough.

What a hideous place to live. I don’t know how I am going to last 3 years.

Also, I am lucky enough to have gotten a sunburn on the tops of my thighs. hooray!