Just thought I would finish up sharing my vacation pics with you all since I haven’t done much crafting since I returned home. This top picture is one of the most breathtaking sights we saw in Hawaii. It’s the Waimea Canyon aka Hawaii Grand Canyon (I didn’t even know this place existed prior to going to Kauai)! If you scroll down below, you’ll be able to see a comparison of the Grand Canyon in Arizona–both spectacular while totally different.

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But before we went to Kauai, we spent a couple more days in Honolulu. We spent a day “getting our culture on.” LOL We visited the Iolani Palace (the only royal palace in the United States) and then spent the afternoon and evening at the Polynesian Cultural Center where we saw great shows about and artifacts from Aotearoa, Samoa, Fiji, Tahiti, Tonga, Hawaii, and so much more. The highlight of the day was definitely the luau and the after dinner show.

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On the last day in Oahu, we drove a bit around the coast and saw the famous Holana Blowhole before we jumped on an inter-island flight to Kauai. Mr. CraftyPaws and I checked into a resort and just relaxed by the pool that first day. We wanted to make sure we had lots of energy for the next day because we were booked on an an amazing helicopter tour.

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The helicopter tour was all that it promised to be and more. Everyone I spoke to said Kauai is the most lush and beautiful of the Hawaiian islands and that some areas are not accessible by any means except by air. It was a splurge but we decided to take the Island Helicopter Tour, the only one that actually lands by the famous Manawaiopuna Falls (the waterfall from the Jurassic Park movie). We flew over all the major landmarks of the island and the pilot, Kaleb, shared lots of interesting tid bits about the island.  After the helicopter excursion, we decided to take one of the 2 main roads on the island to tour the west and north sides. We visited the Wailua Falls (do you recognize it from the intro to Fantasy Island?), and the Kilauea Lighthouse, which had a lot of gorgeous natural cliffs and birds (we even spotted a little baby bird nestled at the base of a bush just off one of the paths!). We spent the next day taking the second road and toured the south and east sides of the island. That’s where you’ll find the stunning Hawaiian Grand Canyon.

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After a few days in Kauai, the Hawaiian portion of our vacation was over. We flew back to the mainland and spent a few days in Las Vegas. There I got to meet up with a crafty friend, Shonda (YT: SLIMcards) and her hubby for a wonderful dessert at the Cheesecake Factory and it reminded me again how blessed I am to be part of this warm and wonderful crafting community. We totally hit it off (as I knew we would) but even our husbands seemed to really click! On the first day in Vegas we took a drive to Red Rock Canyon and were blown away by the beauty of the desert.

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We ended our 2+ week vacation with a bang in Vegas by taking another helicopter tour (really it was the only way to see the Grand Canyon and Hoover Dam in the short amount of time we had left and neither of which Mr. CraftyPaws had ever seen). We landed at the base of the Canyon by the West Rim and had a champagne picnic lunch.  What a treat! Then that last evening we saw the Cirque Du Soleil “O Show” (my favorite of all the Cirque shows–not that I’ve seen them all, but this was the second time I’ve seen this one and I absolutely love it!). It’s at the Bellagio so we had dinner there first, watched the “O Show” (pictures aren’t allowed during the acrobatics so you’ll just see a shot of the clowns doing a bit with a bald man sitting just in front of us–we were in the 3rd row (which is a slight wet zone–really more of a mist)) and then watched a couple rounds of the water fountain show in front of the hotel (think of the great closing scene of “Oceans Eleven”).

img_20160904_103235Mr. CraftyPaws and I aren’t gamblers so the casinos didn’t have much allure for us, but we decided to play some slots with $20 each–just to say that we did try it in Las Vegas. We actually ended up having a bit of luck at The Big Bang Theory dual play slot machine. Well, I came out basically only just breaking even at $0.80 ahead, but Mr. CraftyPaws ended up ahead $26! Woot woot!

So ended our wonderful img_20160809_203843whirlwind vacation celebrating incredible natural and man-made sites, family time, and our 8 amazing years of marriage. I hope you’ve enjoyed “coming along with us on our adventures.”

It was a fantastic vacation, but it’s really good to be home, back with our pups and back in my craft room!

 

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