July 27, 2018
As our trip comes to a close, our last three days were definitely our best ones yet. We started off with a snorkel tour to Molokeni Crater, where we saw an insane amount of fish and coral at the four different spots that we traveled to throughout the day! It was next to impossible to get Jamie out Lucy out of the water, and it was awesome to see how much fun they were having. They fed us a delicious breakfast and lunch on the boat and Sam and Tripp led the charge on making sure that none of the food went to waste and ate everything that the company put out. Afterwards, we went to a beach right next to where the boats docked and ate lunch and hung out. We went back to the campsite after relaxing all day, made dinner, had Moonup and went to bed. The next day we woke up and went surfing with the Maui Beach Boys for the 2nd time, and everyone did a great job. The waves this time were pretty big, and Hayes and Bella got up immediately and crushed waves all day with huge smiles on their faces.
After surfing we ate lunch and drove to the north side of the island for a short hike with great views. Robert and Lia loved being the stars at the front of the group, posing for pictures at every stop. Everyone was asleep on the van ride home, only to be woken up by the smell of pizza entering the van that we picked up before getting to the campsite. On the last day, we drove into Kahului and tried our hand at windsurfing for a few hours. Caroline and Taylor crushed it, and it was awesome being able to hang in the water afterwards and talk before we all went our separate ways the next day. After hanging at Big Beach for the next couple of hours, we ate dinner and then drove to the summit of Haleakalā that night to watch the sunset. It was beautiful, and even though it was super cold, we tried to stay and soak in the moment for as long as we can, talking and taking pictures of all the kids with Gracie and Buist smiling for the camera until the sun was completely down. We’ve had an incredible time with all of your kids this session, with incredible moments of adventure and conversation spread from the beginning to the end of the trip. Thank you so much for sending them to us on this incredible trip, and we hope that they had the trip of a lifetime! Below are some quick shoutouts to you all from the kids!
Jack, Emma, and Baird
Taylor- See you soon! Love you
Tripp- Thank you for sending me on this trip! Love you
Buist- thank you lula for this trip, I love you
Caroline- thanks majay and mom and dad too, love you!
Bella- hi thank you so much mom and dad, can’t wait to see you soon! Miss you lots, love you
Robert- hey KK and Mike, tell Bella and beau that I thank them for this trip! Love y’all
Jamie- I’ll see you in a day! Love you
Hayes- thanks for sending me here, love you
Lucy- I love and miss you! Thank you for sending me on this amazing trip with amazing people, see you in two days!!
Lia- Can’t wait to see you soon!
Sam- I can’t wait to see you, I’ve had a lot of fun, I can’t wait to show you the island
Gracie- I love you, see you soon!
July 23, 2018
Aloha parents we have had another great three days together exploring the beautiful wonders Maui has to offer.
On day 7 we went rain forest repelling. Everyone was so excited to try this scary but amazing activity. Buist and Gracie took charge of the group and volunteered to go down the first waterfall first. After conquering his fear of heights on the zipline Tripp was ready to rappel and loved every minute of it. Everyone picked up the right technique so quickly and we looked like pros in no time. After that we headed to one of our favorite beach spots. Hayes, Sam and Robert were the first ones in the water, they loved jumping into the big waves. It was a beautiful day and everyone had smiles on their face the entire time.
On day 8 we went sea kayaking and snorkeling, and we got so lucky because there were so many beautiful sea turtles swimming around us all morning. Jamie and Lucy both were pro kayakers and made sure their boats were in the front of the group. They also were the first to snorkel and swim with the turtles. It was a rest morning full of beautiful coral and sea creatures we all learned a lot about Maui. After kayaking we headed to Lahaina for a fun town day where the kids got to pick out some souvenirs for their friends and family.
Day 9 we headed to stand up paddle boarding where I️ can happily say everyone had a blast. We came up with some great balancing games to see who could stay on the longest. Lia and Caroline were the winners of the day. Taylor showed off her yoga skills by doing a great headstand on the paddle board and everyone else joined in and tried to learn how to do one. After paddle boarding we went on a beautiful hike where we got to lookout over the island of Maui and see some real surfing done by the pros. Anabel loved hiking and kept everyone’s spirits and energy high throughout the walk. Everyone had a great time sharing stories and getting to know a little more about their new family.
We can’t believe we only have 3 more days left but we are so very happy to have been lucky enough to have the best group we could have ever asked for. Our adventures have been incredible so far and we hope to close out our trip with 3 more great adventures. Signing off for now, talk to you all soon!
July 20, 2018
We just finished up our third day of community service and the whole group had an incredible experience working with the preschoolers at IMUA Family Services. On the first day, we met the class we would be working with, and two of the kids grabbed Robert and Hayes to read him a book right when they walked through the door. We then split up into two separate groups, one half taking kids to read stories in the shopping center across the street while the other group stayed and helped the rest of the class tie dye shirts for the class. Lucy and Buist crushed theirs with their kids and everyone wanted their help afterwards. We ate lunch after and left to go to Makena Big Beach, where everyone had a blast playing in the big waves.
We headed back to the campsite after a while and made stir fry for dinner, had Moonup, and went to bed. On the second day of community service, we split up into different groups again, and this time Gracie, Jamie, and Anabel worked personally alongside children with different communication difficulties and did an awesome job! Meanwhile one of kids taught Tripp a couple new dance moves and a line began to form for who would get carried around the field by Taylor. Afterwards, we went to Makawao National Forest Reserve where we enjoyed a beautiful hike together in nicely shaded forest.
We headed back to camp after the hike, where Sam must have broken a record for most personal pizzas eaten in one sitting! For the final day of community service, we all piled into the van and headed back to IMAU Family Services one final day. This time, all of the kids picked a teenager and held their hand as we all walked to a local park to play and exercise for the morning. Caroline and Lia were the hot commodities of the day, having the honor of holding the hands with a gang of girls who chatted with them the entire day. After a final race to get the preschoolers ready for their nap time and lots of goodbye hugs, we drove to Ka‘anapali Beach and had a picnic lunch on the sand. For dinner we had chicken and mac & cheese and after our Moonup we went straight to sleep for an early morning coming up. Tomorrow we go rappelling down water falls which should be incredible! Check-out some shoutouts from the kids, below!
Emma, Jack, Baird
Hayes – hi Ma and Paps it’s been lit having a swell time and hope the fam has been Gucci! Thanks for sending me on this journey through life. I’m not taking any pictures btdubs
Robert – hey kk and mike! I’m having a stellar time with a stellar group! We’re going waterfall rappeling tomorrow and I’m stoked. I forgot to put on sunscreen and my awesome counselors reminded me and now I’m perfectly tanned. I love y’all so much. Tell Abernot and vbernot that I love them.
Anabel – hi mom and dad love you lots! I’m having so much fun in Maui and we’ve gone to the beach a lot! I went surfing today as well as loads of community service which has also been fun! Lots of love, Anabel
Jamie – hello mother, father, Caroline and Percy! I’m having a great time in Maui! Love you
Tripp – hi mom and dad! I like all of my counselors and I’ve made a lot of new friends! Thank you so much for sending me here !! I can’t wait to snorkel! Love you
Lucy – hi mom and dad! I lost my voice on the first day we’re going rappelling tomorrow! I’m having a great time thanks for sending me on this! Love you miss you guys!!
Buist – hey mom hey dad and hey lula! Are you feeding Gilbert? Hawaii doesn’t look like the ads but I still love it. I’d like to go to Fiji or Thailand next year! The people that I’m with here are great! Love ya
Caroline – hi mom and dad! I like Maui a lot it’s really pretty and we saw a rainbow this morning!! The water here is very blue and clear and dad you would love snorkeling here! There is a girl here who knows Gretchen and a girl who knows Brittie! I love you guys and I’m safe and happy !!!
Gracie – hi I’ve had a lot of fun on this trip so far and thank you for letting me come on this trip! I miss you guys and I miss everything else and I love you!
Taylor – hey mom and dad! Surfing is very good here! Miss you I’m having so much fun! Bye
Sam – hi mom and dad! I loved surfing and I can’t wait to go windsurfing! I’ve made a lot of new friends and I love the leaders. I cooked dinner tonight and it was great! Love and miss y’all !
Lia <3 miss you and I’m having an awesome time!!
July 16, 2018
We are so excited that our trip has begun and can’t believe that 3 days have already flown by! We knew our group was special as soon as we all got to the airport. Everyone bonded instantly and Jack, Emma and I could not be more excited for the next two weeks as our group has already turned into a family.
We started our incredible trip with surfing on the first day! Everyone was super stoked and couldn’t wait to get out on the water! Lucky for us, we had the best waves that we’ve seen all summer! Everyone was able to stand up on their first try! Buist was a pro and learned how to do a 180 degree turn on the board. Jamie, Hayes and Taylor also excelled and we couldn’t get over how awesome they were at shredding the gnar! Afterwards we headed to the beach for a picnic and all hung out together. Caroline, Bella and Lia all explored the beach together and discovered a cool new lookout point that we all enjoyed. We headed back to the campsite to have a fun game of kickball and then made a lovely dinner of chicken quesadillas and ate it family style.
The next day we started with zip lining! Tripp was able to conquer his fear of heights and was able to enjoy every ride and the views. Sam loved the last zip line and couldn’t stop talking about the views he saw. Along the way, the outfitters shared guava with us all and Lucy was brave enough to try this new fruit! Robert made sure that he had a new partner for every zip line helping to bond our group. After zip lining we headed to a new beach and we couldn’t get Gracie out of the water as it was such a beautiful day.
Overall it was a fantastic first three days. We have connected as a group, made memories to last a lifetime and have had the best time together. We are so excited for the days to come and the incredible adventures we are so lucky to experience!
-Baird, Jack and Emma
July 14, 2018
We heard from our leaders, and the trip is off to a great start! Stay tuned for more updates from the leaders over the next few days.