Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Hike to Hanakapiai Falls

One of the things we both really wanted to do coming to Kauai was hike!
This is the Garden Island, and it's true to its name.  The center of the island is the wettest place on Earth (meaning it receives more rain than anywhere in the world).

The scenery is absolutely gorgeous.  Green, lush, & colorful land that spills into the beautiful teal & blue ocean!

The hike to Hanakapiai Falls is 8 miles round trip.  After the first two miles, you land at a beautiful beach, then another two miles - you are at the falls.  The falls were prettier than I imagined.  We both got in, but I couldn't go underwater... it was cold!

It's not a hard hike, but you definitely need endurance on the way up, we were racing up the hills and it was a great work out.  It was also really muddy - so we slipped and slid a lot!
The hike took us about 4 hours and we had a wonderful time!

Thank you for all your sweet comments on my last post (especially about my hair) - I am still getting used to it!

We are off for another day of adventure in Kauai!
Hope you're having a wonderful Wednesday!!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Aloha from Princeville, Kauai

Our vacation has begun... we made it to beautiful Princeville, Kauai yesterday!
I haven't been to Kauai since I was a little girl... and I was blown away by how green everything is.  It's gorgeous!
It's been a wonderful trip so far... we grocery shopped and BBQ'ed, visited the pool and beach... and relaxed!  I also managed to get a 5 mile run in this morning.  It rained on me the entire time, but it was absolutely gorgeous.  I saw 2 rainbows!
{our delicious bbq chicken salad}
{one of the rainbows I saw on my run today}

Tomorrow, we are doing an 8 mile hike.  More pictures coming soon!


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thankful Thursday & A few favorites

I am so excited it's almost the weekend... and more so, I am so excited we leave for vacation in just a few days!!

It's been a crazy, but fun, few weeks. 
Junior League, meetings, and my 2 jobs have been keeping me busy, and I am thankful for that. {but I am sad about not being able to get to my daily reads, miss you guys!}

 I feel so thankful to have sweet family & friends, and the ability to travel with TL for our anniversary! {2 years since we were married, crazy!}
I cut my hair... 8 inches!! eek!  And I am cutting it even a little bit shorter tomorrow.  Hopefully I will be able to get a better picture of it once it's a little shorter.
It's definitely an adjustment, but I am looking forward to having a little style - the long hair was just very hard for me to control!

I am thankful for those girls in that picture... always a good time with them :)

What are you all thankful for??

Here are a few of my favorite pinterest pictures...
{via pinterest
We've been to Hawaii many times, but I plan on doing a few things for the first time while we are there!
{via pinterest}

I hope all of my friends and readers over on the East Coast are safe and sound with the crazy weather headed your way! Thinking of you all!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Slumber Party Bunco

It's been a busy week, and I haven't had time to jump online & blog!  I've missed everyone :(

A week and a half ago, it was Bunco Sunday!!!
I love my Bunco girls... and I love getting together for our monthly shenanigans!  Lot's of laughs, good food, and sweet people...
This month, Jess hosted and it was a slumber party theme {and of course, lot's of pizza, cookies & dessert!}
We have some fun themes coming up in the next few months! :)

I hope everyone is having a fabulous week!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A juicy life change...

More than a month ago, TL started talking my ear off about buying a juicer.  I couldn't wrap my head around why, so I kept brushing him off and talking him out of getting one.

Then, we went to visit his brother, Joe.  Joe had already purchased a juicer, weeks before - and he started raving about it and how it's changed his whole idea of nutrition and made him a healthier person.

So I caved.  We bought a juicer.
A breville juicer.
Then, we went to Costco and stocked up on enough fruits and veggies to feed a small village.  {Much cheaper than buying at the grocery store}

Studies have shown that more than 90% of the nutritional value of fruits and vegetables is in the juice.  If you need more information about why juicing is beneficial, look here.

{looks pretty gross... but it's tasty}
{all the leftover pulps, and the juice!}
{it was like Christmas morning when the box showed up at our door}
Here is my main reason why I think juicing may be good for me... to sit down and eat 3 large carrots, 4 leaves of kale, 2 apples, 4 celery stocks, and 15 grapes would be pretty hard for me to do.  But throwing them in a juicer, and drinking it up is fast, tastes good - and filled me up.

And, I have to admit, it's kind of cool to see the food get juiced!

Okay, off my juicing soap box now ;)

Monday, August 15, 2011

High School Leadership Retreat

I have mentioned quite a few times that I absolutely love my job.  I work for a non profit organization called Hands4Hope - Youth Making A Difference.

Our organization focuses on training youth {k-12} to recognize areas of need in their community and make a change.  We train them how to volunteer - feeding the homeless, packing emergency bags for children picked up by CPS, stocking up local food banks, drives, ect.  They raise money, they organize drives to collect items - and here is the key... they are doing it - with some assistance from us!  We are training and developing leaders.

This year, we launched clubs in our high schools.  Each of the area high schools has their own Hands4Hope club to get kids involved.  The leaders (President, VP, Treasurer, & Secretary) all came with the organization's founder and myself to our first High School Leadership retreat.

It was amazing.  Challenge courses, break out sessions with leadership training from some of the best people in their industries, and we ended with a high ropes course.  The retreat was 3 days long... and it was a blast.  I bonded with some of the coolest teenagers and watched them become a cohesive team.  Many of them didn't know each other before the camp, and after, they were their own little family! :)
{Jen is our founder, and she did the course!}
{& participated in every activity - even blind folded! Isn't she cool?}
{40 feet up!}
{you jump off and ring the bell}
{we told stories by the campfire}

I always wanted to have a career where I felt involved in the community... and I have found it :)  Jen is passionate, determined, and has the biggest heart.  I love being on her team for such a fabulous cause!!

{thank you to one of our parent volunteers, Inga, for taking some of these photos!}

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Even though it's been months since I have done a post for all I am thankful for - not a day goes by that I don't stop and appreciate all of my life's little blessings.
I am thankful for my health.
I am thankful to have the relationship I do with my husband.  I love him to pieces, and we are very fortunate to be so close and laugh so often.  
I am thankful for my job(s).  So thankful.  I love my boss, her passion for the organization she created is contagious.  I've never been so happy with what I am doing.  And, I just got another job (working 2 now) and even though the hours are adding up, I feel so fortunate to be working and making friends/connections in our community.
I am thankful for my friends.  All of them.  I've been lucky to have some hearty conversations this week with a few of them, and every time I hang up the phone, I feel so lucky to have them in my life.
I am thankful for family.  Always.  
I am thankful for the ability to run.
I am thankful for the garbage man.  I was watching our garbage truck driver guy pick up all the cans on our street and I realized how tough it is to do.  Lining it up perfectly to pick up the can, driving that huge truck, and dealing with garbage.  With out him, we would live in a dirty world.
I am thankful for all the opportunities we have to travel.  Seeing little bits of the world has made me a different person.
{terrible picture of both of us - but this moment is priceless in my mind.  We had just arrived in Munich after 20 hours of flying - and we were so excited for the adventure ahead of us!}

I hope you all have a wonderful Thursday and an even more wonderful weekend!

You can learn a little bit more about me over on Simone's blog... Bottom of The Ironing Basket.  She is one of my favorite fellow bloggers that I have known since I started back in 2008.  Thanks, Simone, for featuring me!