Sunday, October 30, 2011

A "Super" Pittsburgh Halloween









Here it is.....the end result of 5 days of straight up sewing and nothing else. My house could definitely attest to it! The boys had a great time at the Trunk or Treat. We will head out tomorrow for one last hoorah but it has been fun.

As for Hawaii....I know we were supposed to post something. I totally forgot. But we did do some research. I think for us we mostly want to go to the beach. We would love to do a few significant things, but don't want to be too scheduled since my kids are going to have a 6 hour time difference:) There are a few beaches that are better for kids (not so many waves etc.) which would be fun to check out. We also looked into the submarine. We think it would be fun although the babies cannot go on it. We also want to go to a Luau- the best one is at the Hyatt- it is the best for kids- it looks like it will be about $93 per adult. Kids 5 and under are free and if you have two adults paying you can get one child in free so that would mean it would only be adults paying. Also, we would like to have french dip sandwiches with soup and or salad.

We can't wait! Love you all.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pics and Video

Here are also some pictures from Porter's baptism, first day of school (notice the swollen eyes...we had two tired kiddos that morning!), raingutter regatta, crazy sock day and Porter's big award the first week of school - he was the "Go-Getter" and got honored in front of the whole school at the Friday morning assembly! We are so proud of the kids in everything that they are doing! They are growing up all too fast!

We love you all - more photos to come! I'm realizing that I haven't edited any of these...oops! I'll get on that!








video
Here is a short video of one of the races at the Rain Gutter Regata...excuse my loud cheering on the video camera - I can't help myself...I'm loud when cheering for my kids no matter what they are doing!

Love you all!

HAWAII....

Hey all,

While we are in Hawaii, we hear that whale watching is really cool - and it will be the perfect time of the year to get close to the whales and dolphins. I did some research this week and this is what we've found: (I researched and wrote all this down but DIDNT write down the name of the place, so I'll find that again - silly me!!!)

Best shores to do whale watching are on Maui's south and west shores, Lahaina and Ma'alaea harbors are excellent for whale watching.

This is what everyone says is the best company to do it through even though it is about 10 more per person. You are on smaller boats and you go faster so longer whale watching time and you get up close and personal with the whales - 100 yards or less away. They guarantee you see whales/dolphins. Everyone says this is way better than being on a huge ship since every seat on this is a front row seat. The boats hold 18 people - we have 18 exactly. We could rent out a whole boat - discounts maybe for the whole boat?

Snacks and beverages included. Best time of the day? People say in the morning or at sunset - both are good times. The morning has smoother water, the sunset tour the whales are quite active. They have tours from 8:45-10:45, 11-1, 1:30-3:30, 3:45-5:45. They also have an early bird special from 7-8:30am for 1.5 hours which is cheaper.

Prices:
49 per adult, 30 kids 12 and under
Early Bird 37 per adult, 25 kids 12 and under

Departs Lahaina Harbor Slip 17
808-667-5678


Also, Tyler and I vote to do the volcano! We have heard all about it from a bunch of our friends and my sister that have been to Maui. They say it is a must see attraction. We'd love to ride bikes down the mountain, but if not bikes, we'd just love to hike into it and all around. We hear the sunrise tour is quite spectacular and I liked the idea that Marci gave in her list about doing it the day after we get there since we will already be awake from the jet-lag...

As for our meal, um...we haven't thought that far out yet. Marci, I like both of your ideas on Hawaiian Haystacks and Pulled Pork, so maybe whichever you don't choose, we will take? Is that alright? Those both sounded so good and so Hawaiian to me!

I like the beach idea also, since the kids really love the beach and it is good just to relax and not really plan every minute. You never know how kids are going to react in a new environment and out of their element.

I really want to taste real pineapple from a pineapple stand!

We are up for whatever! I loved Marci's ideas - those all sounded great to me! I think that submarine would be cool for the kids~Just let me know if we decide to do the Road to Hana because I will FOR SURE have to stock up on dramamine since I hear it is quite windy - I'm thinking a repeat of the roads in Guatemala and they were not so nice to me! :) I do hear the road to hana is beautiful...

We are excited and are really just excited to spend time with everyone again. We were making Claire's "Queen of the Week" Poster tonight and on it she has to list things about her that she loves - she talked about camping this summer and water skiing (even though those of us on the boat with her don't want to relive the crying spell that ensued when she was in the water...) She must have selective memory because she thought it was great?!?! WHAT? We really had a blast this summer and can't wait to see everyone (including Rockford!!!) in just a few months!

Love you all,
Erica

I will try and post pictures of the kids lately and video of Porter's Raingutter Regatta...he won third place with all the big kids! He was pretty excited!


KAYAKING!

I just want to go Kayaking. Amber says it is SUPER fun. Those are my two bits.

Love you all,
Jones

The Bendheims Two Bits

From the West Coast: We are happy to be the first post. If I can find my cord I might even post some pictures of Rock. Hold your breath and we will see if it gets done. Here is what the Bendheims have came up with.

I found this itinerary specially for Families: It has a lot of great ideas. But this might be kind if intense. We will probably want to take a couple days at the beach and we obviously don't have to do all of these things. We think it would be fun to do stand up paddleboard, its super big out here, Redge has done it once and he said it was fun and easy. We can just rent those from the Resort. Also we checked into Fishing it would be about $150 per person and the boat usually holds 6 people.

For our meal: Its a toss up between Hawaiian Hayshacks or pulled Pork Sandwiches. Put in your Vote.

Your itinerary is going to depend on the ages of your kids. The number-one rule is don't plan too much, especially with young children, who will be fighting jet lag, trying to get adjusted to a new bed (and most likely new food), and possibly dealing with excitement to the point of exhaustion. The 7-day itinerary below is a guide to the various family-friendly activities available on Maui. Pick and choose the ones everyone in your family will enjoy.

Day 1: Arriving & Enjoying Pool Time

If you have young kids who are not used to the waves, you might consider taking them to the swimming pool at your hotel. They'll be happy playing in the water, and you won't have to introduce them to ocean safety after that long plane ride. Plan an early dinner, with food your kids are used to. If you're in Lahaina, go to Cheeseburger in Paradise; if you're in Kihei, consider either Shaka Sandwich & Pizza or Stella Blues Cafe. Get to bed early.

Day 2: Going Up a 10,000-Foot Volcano & Down Again

Your family will likely be up early, so take advantage of it and head up to the 10,000-foot dormant volcano, Haleakala. Depending on the age of your children, you can either hike in the crater, speed down the mountain on a bicycle, or just wander about the national park. On your way back down, stop and tour the upcountry communities of Kula, Makawao, and Paia. Plan to visit the Surfing Goat Dairy, stop and look at the strange flowers at the Kula Botanical Garden, or take the 40-minute narrated tram tour at Maui Tropical Plantation. Grab an early dinner -- try A. K.'s Café in Wailuku.

Day 3: Seeing Sharks, Stingrays & Starfish without Getting Wet

After a lazy breakfast, wander over to the Maui Ocean Center in Maalaea so your kids can see the fabulous underwater world without having to get wet. Plan to spend the morning immersed in the 5-acre oceanarium. Eat something fishy for lunch. Then head out to Lahaina, where you can take the kids underwater in a Jules Verne-type submarine at Atlantis Adventures; or, if they are too small, hop aboard the Lahaina/Kaanapali Sugar Cane Train, or rent some snorkel equipment and hit one of the terrific beaches in west Maui. Book ahead for the Old Lahaina Luau in the evening.

Day 4: Sailing to Lanai

Now that the kids have seen the underwater world, take them sailing to Lanai. Trilogy offers the best sailing/snorkeling trip in Hawaii, so don't miss it. In the afternoon, wander around Lahaina and see the giant Banyan Tree, the old Lahaina Courthouse, and the old prison.

Day 5: Driving the Hana Highway

Pack a lunch and spend the entire day driving the Hana Highway, the world's most scenic tropical road. Pull over often and get out to take photos, smell the flowers, and jump in the mountain-stream pools. Wave to everyone, move off the road for those speeding by, and breathe in Hawaii. Plan to spend at least 2 nights in Hana.

Day 6: Spending a Day in Heavenly Hana

You have an entire day in paradise and plenty of things to see. Take an early-morning hike along the black sands of Waianapanapa State Park; then explore the tiny town of Hana. Be sure to see the Hana Cultural Center & Museum, Hasegawa General Store, and Hana Coast Gallery. Get a picnic lunch and drive out to the Kipahulu end of Haleakala National Park at Oheo Gulch. Hike to the waterfalls and swim in the pools. Splurge on dinner at the dining room at the Hotel Hana-Maui. Spend another night in Hana.

Day 7: Seeing the World from a Dragonfly's Point of View

Check to see if the road past Hana is open; if it is, continue driving around the island, past Kaupo and up to the Ulupalakua Ranch and the Tedeschi Vineyards and Winery. Stop at Grandma's Coffee House for a cup of java and head down the mountain, with a stop for lunch at Haliimaile General Store. Spend the afternoon at the Hawaii Nature Center and the Iao Valley State Park next door. If the road past Hana is closed, go back along the Hana Highway the way you came, stopping for lunch at Haliimaile, and then follow the rest of the itinerary from there.



Read more: http://www.frommers.com/destinations/maui/0015020799.html#ixzz1beNJWJlQ

Bye for Now

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Jones and Clairy

Can't Miss this one!

Ririe Lake/ Henry's Lake

This morning after teaching dance for 7 1/2 months of this pregnancy, loading and unloading camping gear and lifting kids for the past 2 1/2 weeks. I bent over ever so nicely to pick up a small piece of paper and my back went out. Awesome. So I am home from church at Mom and Dads and I so I will post some of the pictures from our fun outings over the last couple of weeks with a little summary.
1st off: Ririe Lake
Highlights of the Ririe include: Easily 30 hours of packing for the trip. The "gray Cho Cho" as Tate would call it (horse trailer), never really used to pack the horses but always used for packing our stuff around whether its going to a wedding or camping. It's a part of the family and needs to be where ever we are and it also needs to be packed to the very top, not just half way ALL THE WAY TO THE TOP. "Go big or go home" has always been Dad's motto, (as seen by the tent picture) so we didn't leave one thing behind, not one thing... Except for all the stuff that Tanis, Tim and Redge picked up a couple hours later. We had all the camping gear we have accumulated over the past 25 years with of course a lot of new additions because most of the items were to far back in the storage unit right now to get to them so we bought new stuff. In other words we set up a small town at Lake Ririe and it was delightful. I could probably live there. The next item on Mom's never ending list was food lots of it, the people at Sams club knew us by name by the time this trip was over. We gathered sleeping bags, blankets, pillows for 20+ people (yes everyone had a pillow which was a small miracle), 2 pack and plays, stoves other miscellaneous items that were in the shop also made it on the trip like boxes of PVC pipe and other random things to fill up the Cho Cho. And enough activities to keep us occupied for weeks let alone 3 days. We left the boat home and then of course we woke up the next morning and decided to go get it. Because the water was beautiful and we needed one more thing.
Beautiful Ririe Lake/ Mom and Dads Ward Campout
The Tuttle's Camp Site








Back to the Highlights of Ririe:
  • Claire's Justin Beiber dancing and singing. May the song that can not be named get out of our heads. Even little Millie knows it word for word.
  • Porter and Hudson's first waterskiing runs.
  • Swimming on the dock, Hudsons Cannon Balls and Belly Flop Dives
  • Tate's vocabulary "me way cool", "just me size", "me Tate, I'm Hungry"
  • Millie's Sugar Highs- love her sugar waves and energy. Never seen sugar work so good. And hearing her sing at the top of her lungs in the tent- Do a Deer.
  • Lukers wandering into all the strangers tents. Giving that little smerk on his face. And eating everything except food he could get his hands on.
  • Redge coming back to camp after wake boarding and not remembering what happened for the past 3 hours. That was fun. A huge concussion wiping out everything that happened before and after waking boarding. Let's never do that again. It's good to remember life in general. That was scary.
  • Dutch oven cookin, us never winning any ward cooking contest ( nobody tried our chocolate cherry dessert, except for Tate who sat on the top of the table when dinner was all done and ate right out of the Dutch oven saying "umm so good, me like this" At least one person liked it.
  • Tyler got scalped. From the sound of Ericas scream I thought someone had died. I didn't see the scalping in action but a little church B-ball with a slam dunk and a head dive into the court will get you a big chunk of hair missing on the back of your head.
  • Taily pole Story and The Vindow Viper stories around the camp fire.
  • Joni skied and Dad didn't even have to yell at her to get out there.
Henry's Lake
We then packed up camp and the boys went off for a "Mans Day" of shooting and other man things. One of them will have to report about this day. The girls went back to the apartment got the food ready for the cabin and it took the full day of course. A couple highlights from the cabin.

Grandpa Jack's Watchful Eye: Let the Fishing Gods Come Down. I am sure Grandpa Jack was up in heaven orchestrating all of this. Mom and Dad took most of the grandkids out on the boat late in the morning around 11am. The fishing hadn't been that good but they thought they would try. And little did we know but Grandpa Jack would make sure those kids caught fish. 8 big suckers in an hour and a half. Small miracle but a happy thank you to the fishing gods.









The Dock Dwellers