Monday, 16 July 2012

Hawaii: Where We Stayed

I can't post Hawaii pictures without first touching on the cottage that we rented through VRBO that, for all three of us, made our trip. Steve and I are now firmly on the vacation rental side of the coin when it comes to traveling with little ones. Hotels shmotels, I liked that we could open a sliding glass door in the morning and Mila had the world at her feet (I'll get to what her world consisted of in a second). I loved turning down a quiet residential street every evening after being at the beach all afternoon and being able to lose myself in the fantasy that this was actually our home. I loved not hearing or seeing other tourists. I loved that Steve could get up with Mila in the morning and fix her breakfast in our little kitchen/dining area while I slept in (and he did this every morning, God bless that gift of a man).

Initially we had been searching listings for a place with a closed-off bedroom and separate living room area. That was a deal-breaker, I thought. That way after we put Mila down for the night in her travel crib (the Babybjorn travel crib is worth its weight in gold! Highly recommend.) we'd have a place we could unwind, talk, relax, be adults in those evening hours that go by all to quickly. Am I right, parents? In short, not be relegated to whispering in the bathroom all evening long so we, shhhhhhh, don't wake the baby. After days of searching and coming up with nothing that felt right, Steve found a certain listing. A stand-alone cottage next to the main house...minutes from the beach...hammocks...secluded. And what we knew would be the highlight for Mila: animals. A horse and her foal, a resident pup, roosters. We were sold (it had me at the hammocks!)--if only there were a separate bedroom and not just a studio apartment. Steve made contact with the owner anyway and she won us over with just how thoroughly warm and nice she was, evident even through email. A parent and grandparent, she adored kids and even offered to have a wooden screen available to us so there would be a visual partition between the bed and living area. We took a leap of faith and sent in our deposit.

A few days later we got an anxious email from the owner--she had accidentally double-booked the cottage for the first 2 nights of our trip and would we mind staying in the main house with use of their infinity pool, outdoor shower, having two adjoining rooms at a discounted price? Um, twist our arms and no, we wouldn't mind :) 

 Really, best decision of the trip. Our rental made our trip. Take out the beaches, the shave ice, fresh seafood, paddleboarding, and kayaking--it might not be Hawaii anymore, but had we never left the cottage I don't think any of us would've complained. Certainly not Wugs. Tomorrow you'll see why!

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