Saturday, August 25, 2007

They're leavin' on a jet plane!

You recall, of course, that Marc & Kylie are in Kenya?

(They're the white ones)

Today my sister (Carlynne) and my parents are all flying to Kenya to join Marc & Kylie. Carlynne’s doing a medical elective for 5 weeks, then traveling with Marc & Kylie for 2 weeks. My Dad will be working for 2 weeks there, then he and Mither will take one week to do the fun stuff.

Shucky darn, I was enjoying being in the same city as Carlynne again and now she’s taking off for a month and a half?

(We're allowed to have twin clothes and twin chairs and twin goofy expressions... we ARE twins.)

This morning Carlynne and Dan came over for a “Good-bye Brekky”. Kylie’s Mom gave us a gourmet waffle iron for our wedding, so we had 3 different kinds of waffles for breakfast: Apple cinnamon, whole grain blueberry, and CHOCOLATE FUDGE. This is probably the only way you can truly justify having chocolate for breakfast (are all you pregnant women paying attention?)

Here's the waffle maker lathered in goo-ey chocolate (and this is post partial clean-up!). Thanx Cherri!!

Mmmmm... yummy waffles. Thanx Cherri!!

I think that while the rest of the fam is gallivanting on the other side of the globe, Shar should come over and we can eat ice cream and whimper about being left behind in Canada. And maybe she can do my make-up too. How about it Shareen?

Classic Shareen:

Happy travels to all three of you!! Shareen and I aren't jealous at all ;)

PS- We have your pictures on our fridge to remind us to pray for you (not that we'd forget) :

Those are our adorable nieces on the bottom :)

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Georges is his is his game!

Chock up another celebrity connection for Julie!

I was going for a little joggeroo in the river valley and I crossed paths (and made direct eye contact) with GEORGES LARAQUE (an Edmonton Oiler). That's TWO Oiler's that I've seen up close and personal so far. (perhaps you recall my Ethan Moreau incident?) Wayne Gretzky was in town last weekend too. DANG I missed that one. Maybe he'll be my next victim...

Georges in his hockey glory.

Where's the camera when you need it? I didn't have my camera with me, so I can't prove this once-in-a-lifetime encounter, but I'm 99.9% sure it was him (and perhaps if he googles his name and stumbles upon my blog- he can confirm that he was indeed in the River Valley yesterday morning).


(Wouldn't want you to forget about this special encounter with Ethan!)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Home Sweet Home

We are back in sweet little Alberta. We loved our trip to Hawaii (and we miss it), but we're quite content to be home (although I'm not sure about this whole "real life" thing starting again...).

Quick wrap up of some highlights of our wonderful Hawaiian getaway:

One morning I said to Lowell, "I think I'll put my hair in braids today and throw on a hat."

To this, Lowell responded, "Oh, would you like a french braid?"

Me: "Come again?"

Here's the story: I've always said that a prerequisite to being my husband is the ability to french braid hair. In the weeks before the wedding, Carlynne apparently taught Lowell how to french braid, and he practiced on her and her roommates.

So here it is: Lowell's first french braid (on me)!!

I was so impressed that I didn't end up throwing on a hat. (Mom, aren't you proud??)

The next day Lowell took me on a surprise flight to Kauai (another island). We went on a helicopter tour of the island. Kauai is where Jurassic Park (at least some of it) was filmed, and we flew right by the waterfalls that are in the movie. Lowell loved the whole hour-long ride. I, on the other hand, suffer from motion sickness, so I spent about 58.5 minutes with my eyes closed. Never you worry though, I did see the waterfalls (however briefly)!

At the airport in Kauai.

Look how happy I am to board the helicopter!
It didn't last long:

This is how I spent the adventure.

The famous falls!

Another beautiful view.

Us after the ride:
Although the yellow things look like fanny packs, and while I'd be proud to wear such a fashionable item, I must admit that they are life vests.

This is what I ACTUALLY looked like (and felt like) after the ride.

After the helicopter tour, we spent the rest of the day hanging around the island where chickens run rampant. It was so odd to see chickens roaming around freely as we're used to seeing them in fancy dancy little coups. While we were having lunch (ironically, a chicken burger!), there was a chicken peering into a garbage can. He was getting a little too snoopy and fell in. So odd.

The next night we went to Waikiki beach (Honolulu) and went on a sunset dinner cruise with Josh & Tara (friends from Lowell's hometown who were also honeymooning in Hawaii). Surprisingly (and thankfully) I didn't experience much motion sickness, so I was able to enjoy the giant spread of food and the Hawaiian dancers with the 3 other honeymooner couples at our table. It's ridiculous how many people honeymoon in Hawaii. On our flight to Maui (when we first arrived in Hawaii), we told the stewardess we were on our honeymoon (you know, hinting for special treatment), and she said, "You're couple number 13 on this flight." Holy toledo. You would probably get special treatment on that plane if you're not on your honeymoon!

Anyhoo, some pictures of the sunset cruise:

Before sunset there was a rainbow. How glorious!!

Hawaiian dancers (I'm pretty sure that goes without saying...)

Zee much anticipated sunset!

Josh & Tara

Lowell and I

Doesn't this picture look like my head was cut out of a picture and photoshopped onto this scene? It's totally real. Really! And that's why I included this picture.

The next day we did what everyone must do in Hawaii...we surfed! We made sure to leave our wedding rings at home as Josh went a few days before and lost his wedding ring within 15 minutes. That sucks. Lowell and I both got up, and would loooove to do it again. When we spoke to the activities coordinator lady at our resort, she told Lowell to be careful out there because he looks like a local and they might treat him like an experienced surfer (while he's not). It's true! He's gotten several comments in the past that he looks like a Hawaiian surfer dude, and even a native Hawaiian thought he was one!

Our surf boards (sans us).

After hanging out some more on the beach, we climbed Diamond Head.

Lowell atop Diamond Head

The view from Diamond head (of Honolulu/Waikiki)

We then went back to our place and started packing things up. while I was packing Lowell's suitcase, there was a COCKROACH in it. GROSS I hate bugs. Have I mentioned that there were also geckos in our room? It was a classy resort, but the rooms were outdoor cabiny things, so geckos got in through the roof. I was none to impressed with this especially since I first noticed one when we were relaxing in bed watching an episode of Reba (I love that show) on Lowell's laptop. I saw the scurrying little creature out of the corner of my eye and about flipped my lid. After that, I tried my hardest to get a picture of one of the little guys (you know, as evidence), but they're just too fast! I guess you gotta take the bad (gross bugs etc) with the good (everything else about Hawaii).

Then we flew home to Edmonton and opened wedding presents. YEAY that was FUN. I could get used to this :) Everyone is so nice! We finally cleaned up the place, and have been enjoying settling in ever since. It was especially nice to be back at our (Edmonton) home church again.

Yesterday Lowell started work again, and I start next Monday.

Aloha (good-bye) Hawaii and Aloha (hello) real life!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Wedding Pictures!!

This is Marc & Kylie (my brother and sister-in-law). They couldn't come to the wedding because they're in Kenya, so Lowell and I had pictures of them taken in their bridesmaid/groomsman attire and had them blown up into life size cardboard people. They were also our guestbook attendants. We were so happy that they could at least join us in cardboard form! :)

La handsome groom!

My parents giving me our traditional "1-2-3 kiss".

Our rings on my bouquet. Yet another super creative shot by Kev & Duane!

Check them out at:

Monday, August 06, 2007

Still bloggin in paradise...

Julie likey Hawaii!!

This picture deserves to be posted as I stood there with this smile pasted on my face for 20 minutes while Lowell waited for the waves to spash perfectly against the rocks. Ahh, life is tough!

First things first: this is our convertible from Maui. It's a 2007 Ford Mustang convertible. We thought we were all cool and unique, but apparently it's the car of choice around these Hawaiian islands because EVERYBODY rents them: young and old, tall and short, wide and narrow...everybody rents these things!

Saturday: drove the rode to Hana. This is a mile 54 mile drive around one of the 2 volcanoes that erupted and formed the island of Maui. This was a freakishly narrow and winding 54 miles along the coast that prides itself in being one of the most beautiful drives in the world (although long and sickly if you get motion sickness). Add in a couple of stops and it took us 6 hours to arrive at the "Seven Sacred pools". The pools were our #1 motivation to drive this challenging course, and they were closed! It had rained too much the night before and the pools were at a dangerously high level.

One of the stops on the road was the "Garden of Eden". It was beautiful, and here are just a couple of pictures to prove it (Moms- we think you would've loved it!) :

The Seven Sacred Pools (from a distance)... don't they look inviting?? :

While the convertible was much enjoyed during this trip, it does have its drawbacks. It's not first and foremost on my mind to wear SPF 45 in a CAR as I'm not used to the thinking that should accompany convertible driving! However, I will now always think to lather on the sunscreen because my shoulders, neck, and scalp are charred from the 9 hour jaunt in the blazing sun, and it sure ain't comfortable. This is me. JULIE. I put on SPF 45 in the dead of winter...and I got BURNT? Dad, I hope you're not too disappointed in me ;) From now on my cowboy hat (i.e. our little slice of Alberta) stays on my head AT ALL TIMES.

Sunday we went parasailing in Lahaina (previous capital of Hawaii). That was a unique experience that we would both recommend!

Today is Monday, and we are now comfortably settled at our resort (Lowell's Grandma's timeshare place) in O'ahu. This place doesn't have a kitchenette, but it does have 3 random little fridges and 2 coffee makers. We made another grocery shopping trip and filled the fridges because we certainly can't afford to eat out all the time. It costs like $9.25 for 2 cookies at this resort. No thank you, I'd rather chew on tin foil.

The resort's pool and view. aaahhhhhh:

The resort is beautiful though, and such a relaxing atmosphere. We are an hour away from Honolulu and Waikiki (popular beach), so we will be taking day trips to those areas (in our new mustang convertible which is exactly the same except for it's white). For now though, we're going to do as Hal & JoAnn suggest and "Keep Fit and Have Fun" (although not so much the "keep fit" part).


Friday, August 03, 2007

Honeymoonin in Hawaii!

We’re here in Hawaii for our honeymoon, and can’t believe we only have 2 more days left in Maui before heading to O’ahu for our second and FINAL week in Hawaii. It’s been so nice and relaxing…as well as adventurous!

Leaving Calgary airport:

A stop over in Seattle:

Arrival at Maui airport:

We landed at 6pm, rented our car, and headed to our condo. Within the hour it was already dark…but still hot! Our condo is beautiful and has all the luxuries of a regular kitchen. This called for a good thorough grocery shopping trip to Foodland. Apparently this trip wasn’t as thorough as we originally thought as we’ve been back every day since. We haven’t eaten out yet at all—we’re saving that for next week when we won’t have a kitchen. Well, we did buy a nummy smoothie, and today we plan on buying this island’s specialty: shaved ice.

I'm pointing to our condo:

The condo inside:

The view from our window (it's a rough life I know) :

Our rental car. My goodness it’s BEAUTIFUL. We don’t have a good picture yet, but it sure is a 2007 Ford Mustang Convertible!! We feel so spoiled. You will see a picture of it…SOON.

Our first full day in Hawaii was spent biking 9, 750 feet down a volcano to the ocean. We were picked up at 7am, trucked up the (obviously inactive) volcano, and guided down it on bikes that were provided. Breakfast and lunch were included, and both were consumed at some point on the volcano. One of the options for lunch was a Chef salad. Are Lowell and I the only Canadians who didn’t/don’t know what that is? When we questioned them, the guide just repeated “CHEF SALAD” with extra clarity. Um, but what is it? Apparently a salad with turkey, bacon, shrimp among other goods.
The ride was beautiful and we went through patches of intense fog & rain (pedaling through the clouds) , then right back into the clear sunshine. We got to the bottom at almost 2pm. I think this is the only situation where you can spend 6 hours on a bike and get NO exercise!

From the top of the volcano:

The parking lot at the top where several bike tours gather:

They also provided rain suits and helmets. This is us! Lowell=blue; Julie=yellow:

Wednesday we tried out the BEACH for the first time. We have our own little beach about a minute away. Again. SO spoiled! We about burned our feet on the sand, but enjoyed laying in the warm (well, extremely hot) sun. And yes, we were wearing waterproof SPF 45. Sunscreen is our best friend these days!

Yes, the beaches actually look like this!

After the beach, we took a 4 hour walk through and around the town of Kihei. We stopped at all the little markets and scouted prices out. Are we supposed to barter in Hawaii? I know that goes on in Mexico, but some of these markets look the same as Mexico, and they have no prices with them, so we feel like they should be bartered down. Is this kosher? I don’t know. Are we dumb Canadian tourists? YEP and LOVING it!

Yesterday was another beach day and we went body boarding! It was super fun catching the waves and getting sand blasted. When we were finished for the day and I took off my bathing suit, I was wearing a sand suit! Sand stuck to me like glue and I probably could’ve gone out in public and no one would’ve noticed that I wasn’t wearing anything! Sorry folks, no picture there.

PS: by the time we brought the camera out, the waves were dinky. Trust me: we caught MUCH bigger waves than this!!

Today we have more sun, fun, and body boarding planned.

Until next time….aloha!