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Monday, September 20, 2021

establishing our hawaiian vacay routine

so i'm going to continue the hawaii recaps because they're so long overdue - but this weekend.  OH MY GOODNESS, THIS WEEKEND.  it was absolutely amazing from start to finish, and i can't wait to share all of the details.  two words:  surprise party.  oh, yes.  the hub and the old lady pulled off the surprise of a lifetime, and there was a photographer who captured it all.  i figure i can post about it once i have access those pictures, but in the meantime let's rewind and relive our hawaiian summer vacation, shall we?

we actually spent the next couple of days just taking it easy, relaxing on the beach, enjoying some downtime.  since i was still operating on l.a. time, i usually found myself awake at 6am - and so i decided to be somewhat productive and hit the gym.

i ended up creating a bit of a routine for myself, starting the day with a good workout and then heading out to grab coffee at honolulu coffee co., oh-so-conveniently located right out the front door of the hotel.  on that first day, the bean joined me and found a new favorite drink - a mocha latte made with just one shot of espresso.  as for me, i rediscovered the hawaiian latte, an iced espresso drink with macadamia nut and coconut syrup.  so delicious.

the hub is not a fan of hitting the gym.  but when we checked in and perused the hotel activities, he found something that was much more to his liking - a free yoga class held every morning at 7am.  and as it turned out, our room offered a perfect view of the class.  

i cracked up when i took this and realized that i hadn't been quite as stealth in my spying as i may have thought.

the vacation package we'd booked included a whole bunch of freebies - coupons for free breakfast in the restaurant downstairs, a handful of free drinks plus dole whip served poolside.  we tried out that breakfast and learned that it wasn't just a continental breakfast and a basic cup of coffee - those coupons were like golden tickets that entitled us to anything on the menu from eggs and bacon to full-on surf and turf.  the mochi waffle was a favorite for me and the bean, while the hub opted for healthier fare like fruit and oatmeal.

the hub got into the habit of heading to the beach after yoga class to secure beach umbrellas and chairs for us.  it just so happened that we were there during the busiest week they'd had in two years, which meant that when the booth opened to book cabanas and umbrellas at 7am, people had already been waiting in line for at least an hour or two to reserve them - for the NEXT day.  and with only four cabanas available daily and a limited number of umbrellas, the hub ended up using an outside vendor that operated right out front.  and strangely enough, they were more well-located than those set up by the hotel.  go figure.  plus we were closer to the bar.  win!

one evening, we decided to hit up our favorite hole-in-the-wall that we'd discovered a couple of years ago - kyung's seafood.  they offered huge portions of delicious, fresh sushi, sashimi and poke.  the bean was in heaven.

and when we got back to our room we found that there was a big 40th birthday celebration going on downstairs.  they had dancers and live music and DRUMS.  it was pretty loud, but it was entertaining.

the next morning, i was greeted by this gorgeous rainbow right outside.

and when i got to the gym, the peloton bike in the corner was actually free and available for me to try.  i remember taking spin class a couple of times and absolutely hating it, but i have so many friends who adore this thing and so i figured i owed it to myself to at least give it a shot.  i made a few adjustments to the seat, hopped on and tried out a 30-minute sample class.  kicked my ass, but it was actually fun.

and when it was over, i decided to venture out a little further and hit up island vintage coffee, which is the old lady's and my most favorite coffee place on the planet.  the line was crazy long, but it was worth it.

we spent that afternoon on the beach too, and when it was time to take a break from bouncing in the waves for some lunch, we headed across the street to the international marketplace.

the line for the udon shop was a lot shorter when we got there, so we made a second trip for those delicious, chewy noodles.  afterwards we stopped in at marukai again and picked up a couple of mochi donuts.  the special flavor that day was watermelon sugar, and it was just as delicious as it sounds.

for dinner that evening we ventured out again, this time to BLT.  my cocktail that evening was the pimm's cup, which is one of my favorite drinks.

fresh popovers came first.

we ordered from the prix-fixe menu, and got to pick out some appetizers.  i can't remember what this was, but the hub enjoyed it:

lobster bisque isn't really very picturesque, but it was delicious.

the bean, ever so predictable, happily devoured this plate of assorted sashimi.

the steaks that the bean and i both ordered were topped with a yummy cream sauce and chunks of fresh crab.

and the hub, still trying to eat healthier than us, said that his fish was light and tender and perfectly seasoned.

i think...i think this was a peanut butter chocolate mousse.  i do remember that it was really light and tasty.

the macarons were a little disappointing.  they looked nice, but didn't have the texture we were anticipating.  oh well.

still, it was a lovely dinner and a nice way to cap off an easy, relaxing day.  i mean...any vacation day in hawaii is easy and relaxing, but i still savor and appreciate every one.  it's what i think about when we're at home in the throes of our hectic daily routines.

you know, like now.

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