We left the slushy, yucky snow and headed to the airport for our long day of travel on Thursday, Feb 28th. By the time we reached Fiji, we had been travelling for 24 hours! The kids were amazed that we literally skipped March 1st, as we arrived on March 2nd!
Here’s the excited crew in the car on the way to the airport:
The kids were pretty angelic going through the long lines at the airport (only one meltdown when we thought we had a missing teddy bear…). They were amazing on the first flight too. I got so many compliments from the flight attendants about the kids (clearly they were on their best behaviour).
They watched movies, did some homework (really) and tried to sleep:) My personal TV didn’t work, but they gave me ice cream and a cookie to compensate. Luckily the kids TV’s worked, and the kids still got icecream and a cookie because they were so sweet.
At the end of the flight, the pilot invited all the kids into the cockpit – we were so surprised. Gabe especially was through the moon. The pilot then gave him a pair of his “real wings”!
We headed to Santa Monica Pier, where we walked around, had some churros, and sat on the beach. We had a scary moment when we thought Zach had disappeared, but he had only wandered off to “get a good picture”. It was quite funny. Another “moment” for the kids to remember (they informed me) is when I sent them off to find post cards. Josh came across one of a girl in a bikini and literally choked. Gabe has been doing the best imitation of it – and they swear it is one of those memories they would share forever (so I figured I better document it even though I wasn’t there:)
We made our way back and tasted the famous In and Out Burger. It was good, but Burger’s Priest still rules! The kids were also excited because they met the star of “Shake it Up” who was also planespotting with his Dad (see stars do the same things:). Planespotting was great. The planes – well, you can almost touch them!! Gabe was in heaven.
LA airport – the kids crashed. The three hour time difference is enough to tire them out. Sam, Josh and Zandra crashed on the floor, while the older boys did homework and roamed around. Everyone is keeping careful track of everything in their travel journals (which were in their surprise bags – I made them each a carryon filled with little treats, magazine, games, puzzle book, pens/paper, fill in the blank/drawing book, head pillow, and a travel journal). I’m so glad that they are as excited to document as me!
We managed to pry them off the floor and get onto the plane, where everyone slept for a good 5-6 hours. Not bad! The remainder of the flight was spent watching shows, movies, and feeling pretty excited.
We arrived while it was still dark, but the sun rose while we were in Customs line. We got a glimpse of our first Fijian sunrise when we waited for our bus to take us to our boat transfer. I love to watch the sunrise, and they were happy to allow me to try to self portrait our family watching the sunrise with my iphone. They each took their own pics too (which they have been doing so far – amazing the things they capture through their eyes!)
We waited for our boat and everyone did some travel journalling.
We boarded the Maholo Cat and headed to our resort: Plantation Island Resort. We were all busy taking some snaps on the boat. We were pretty excited when we finally arrived and they greeted us with “Bula” and shell leis. (Josh lost his after a couple of hours, but the lovely ladies gave him a new one).
Above is the picture of our resort as we pulled in. Our room wasn’t ready, but we all had our bathing suits in our carryons, so were able to quickly change and head to the beach. We had no sun lotion, but we were only out for a short time – no problem right? Wrong. We are lobsters from that short time.
While at the beach, Josh had to run back to the bathroom – which he knew where it was. However, he did not know how to get back.
We had to start a search party for him. That’s two kids lost in under 24 hours. What does that say about the kids – or the parents??? He finally returned, and told of his great adventure trying to find us. He figured it was an island – so we would not be leaving, so no need to panic (so…..if it’s a city I guess he feels he needs to worry….). He did run around a big chunk of the island – trying to get back to our section of the beach. He reports even running into people who might help him, but dashing off when they tried to talk to him!
The good part was when he returned he was able to give us a tour of everything he had found: the various pools, tennis courts, different beach areas! We also checked out some restaurants and the neighboring resort. Beautiful island!
We had a great little BBQ lunch. Well, great if you are serious carnivores like my children. Chicken, fish (which was by far the BEST), steak and sausage….oh and salads which Rob and I enjoyed. After a yummy lunch, it was back to the pool where the kids engaged in a crazy game of sorts, while yelling at us “watching” on the sidelines to not sleep (trying to get over jet lag), but we were certainly trying to battle fatigue!
It started to rain, but we still went to the beach where Rob found a starfish, as well as a baby squid and of course many little crabs. The kids love exploring!
All in all, it was an awesome day(s). Feels like we have been here for days already! In a good way! We just relaxed before dinner while we could hear the rain on our little garden bure, and the kids played some games, wrote in their travel journals, and watched some “Party of Five”. The little ones struggled to keep their eyes open past 5pm. We woke them up to go for dinner – which ended up being a disaster because everyone was so exhausted and it was pouring rain:(
Lights out by 8pm for us all! Fabulous day, ready for another!