Catch Up Over Coffee #2

#chattyblogs at lisathomsonliveAfter being away from the blog for three weeks, I thought a catch up over coffee would be in order.

Grab your favorite mug. Mine’s full of Kona coffee (lies). I don’t actually care for Kona coffee…

So, back to reality here. We had a wonderful trip to Hawaii which I’m going to share some photos with you. Unfortunately, we came back to some serious winter weather. I feel like I’m back on the Prairies! I was away for over two weeks and missed you all dearly. I know, you didn’t miss me because it’s the law of vacations. When you’re away, time slows down and while you’re home, time is the same and thus passes quickly. You didn’t have time to miss me…


We spent one week in Maui, a beautiful and compact Island that we have both been to many times before. We have seen almost everything on the Island and love the beaches. Except, we have NOT and probably never will take the drive to Hana. Sounds like a nightmare road trip. After one full week of relaxation, we flew to Kona, HI on the Big Island. Randy has never been to the Big Isl while I have been over 20 years ago. This seemed like an ideal island to explore together and it did not disappoint! It’s vast in comparison to Maui. The view, the Pacific ocean spread out beyond and the lava fields that seem to go on forever give this Island a whole different feel.

Interestingly, we planned the trip as we went along. We had no return flight booked. We planned for the Big Island while in Maui. The idea of inter island travel seemed romantic. I envisioned the outdoor boarding and deplaning. Smug in my notion of going to the airport but not yet ending my trip. However, don’t let the short inter-island flight fool you. It’s an ordeal all the same. With security these days, it takes just as long to get to your gate for a local flight as it does to fly international. When all was said and done it felt like a whole day’s travel just to get to another island. Was it worth it? Absolutely!

We began our 9 days on the Big Island based in Kona. We took a drive to the black sand beach on the Southern tip of the Island, not realizing that it would take almost two hours to get there. Looking on the map, it didn’t seem it should take more than an hour. On the return trip (we had packed zero snacks), I suddenly realized why the people on the survivor shows get excited about finding a snake to cook or a bug to eat.

Was it worth it? Absolutely! The sea turtles were abundant and swimming just off shore. Standing knee deep in the ocean, I could almost touch them.

Okay, the McDonald’s lunch wasn’t great but we were desperate.

After about four days in Kona, we headed over to the Hilo side of the Island. We used Air B’n B for the first time and were delighted by the experience. Staying with Steve added a local flare to our trip that we wouldn’t have felt otherwise. He was a lovely host and his home and property were beautiful. That’s where we enjoyed the volcano tour. We cycled in 4.5 miles. My spin class training came in handy. Never mind I got a flat tire on the cycle back. Pushing a bike is not as fun as riding it. Was it worth it? Absolutely!

Our last days were spent on the beach on the west side of the Island enjoying swimming, sunning and sunsets. It was a relaxing way to spend our last few days of vacation.

 Airline Anecdote

We flew over on West Jet without delay. I am normally a loyal west jet customer, however, we flew back on Air Canada. I haven’t flown on AC for many years. The flight was delayed by almost two hours so it wasn’t the best start but hey, shit happens. Still, I was surprised at a few things. First, we did not get a refreshment until we were in the air for over two hours. I’ve never experienced that before. Also, they ran out of hot food by the time they were in the back of the plane which of course, is where we were seated. We settled for a cheese and fruit plate that I must admit was tasty and fresh.

They did not come around to collect garbage nor to check on seat belt and tray table situations while we began our prep for landing. I thought it was unusual. Then as we were finally getting off the plane, it resembled a garbage heap. Apparently, we were flying in a dump. Not cool. Last, we waited over a full hour for our bags to get to the carousel for collection. And yes, we paid extra for this ‘service’. So we were hungry, tired and existing on our last nerve. I realize this is what travel is but really?

A Few Pics

mapmaui vibe

big island vibe

catch up over coffee 2

catch up over coffee 2


hawaii volcano

east side of big island

Then we came home to this:

winter wonderland
This is the view from my desk window. It’s the dog park in the apartment building. Usually it is full of doggies early in the morning but not today.

Have you been on vacation in recent years? Where did you go and what was your travel experience like?

Coming soon!

A Divorce Companion-the best of the Great Escape Blog. I have consolidated and edited the very best and most popular blog posts and made it into an e-book. It will be available on Amazon in the next few days. More on this next week. Here is the cover reveal…

Capture ebook cover preview

Tell me dear Escapee, how have you been these last three weeks?

This is a link up post #chattyblogs hosted by Shanaya Tales  If you’re in the mood for a chattyblog and want to link in, please tag me and I’ll stop over.


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32 Replies to “Catch Up Over Coffee #2”

  1. That looks absolutely lovely! We went to Hawaii on our honeymoon in 2003. We actually really liked the Kona coffee! I still have the mugs.
    All of our vacations as of late have revolved around our little guys sports. So our actual family vacations have been small. Camping. It’s not so bad but it’s getting old and boring. I put my foot down this year though. We will see how that goes!
    Such lovely pictures though Lisa. I swear that a part of my heart is still there.
    Kimberly recently posted…When The Sun Isn’t EnoughMy Profile

    1. Hi Kim, the perfect place for a honeymoon 🙂 If that was the last time you were there—it’s time to return. We hadn’t been in five years and it made it that much sweeter. Ya, I really want to like the local Kona coffee but for some reason it didn’t agree with my taste buds lol. You’re definitely in the parenting phase of sports tourney and travel with children/team. It’s fun but I know what you mean, it is NO holiday. I think we leave a part of our heart there too. I hope you get your vacay in the sun, Kim! I know how much it would lift you.

  2. Welcome back! I could use some Maui time right about now too. I went home at Christmas, knowing it would be snowy in North Idaho, but when I came back to Boise there was more snow here than up there! It’s the snowiest winter on record here, and I’ve lived in the area since 1999. Usually, winters are mild but do get cold. This year, it’s snowed a lot and stayed cold. Only now is it all finally starting to melt. This is hopefully not a new trend. I will gladly go back to snowless winters here!
    Jeri recently posted…#BlogTip: An Author Website ChecklistMy Profile

    1. Thanks, Jeri! Indeed, Maui time is therapeutic 🙂 It’s been a cold one here, too. When it snows here, normally it melts within 24 hrs but this year it seems to stick around longer. We’re expecting another storm tonight. I would be happy to go back to that rain. Next month we can look forward to Spring. Let’s hope it comes early!

  3. You know with the state of the world these days..a vacation like that sounds idyllic. I am so glad you got to take the time out, and enjoyed yourself.

    I had somehow missed that you were coming out with a book. Way to go girl. Wishing you the very best with it. Count me in for any social media promo you need. I will be more than glad to share. 🙂
    Shantala recently posted…If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo | Book ReviewMy Profile

    1. Hi Shantala, a vacation was exactly what the doc ordered! This is actually my second book. It’s complementary to the original based on the best of the blog here. I’ve edited it (many hours) and chose only the best. Thank you for offering to help spread the word. I really appreciate that!

  4. Your pictures show what a wonderful vacation you had! I love the one of Big Island Vibe as you are looking awesome! Thanks for sharing.

    Flight delays and long queues are fun spoilers but we have to accept them as a part of travel but I have never come across such lousy in-plane service!! 🙂

    Congratulations for completing another book Lisa. I am so happy for you! That is an a beautiful and meaningful cover! My best wishes for the launch.
    Balroop Singh recently posted…Is Affection An Offshoot Of Love?My Profile

    1. Hi Balroop, it really was great! Sightseeing and time for relaxation both. So true about the chaos of airport and that’s to be expected. The in-flight issues were unexpected though.Thank you, Balroop! I look forward to getting it up there and hope to see it be as useful as the first book 🙂

  5. Hi Lisa,

    Welcome back! 🙂

    You sure were missed, and I’m sure your trip must have really been a rejuvenating one – one can make out from the lovely pictures…lol…the last one saying you came back to this was great!! I can imagine the feel, as it’s happened with us also!

    Congratulations on your book sounds to be a great one consolidated from the posts from the blog. Wishing you every success with a lot more of them.

    Thanks for sharing. Enjoy your weekend 🙂
    Harleena Singh recently posted…Interview with Chandler Bolt: Self-Publishing School Founder and EntrepreneurMy Profile

    1. Thanks, Bren!The man is definitely a keeper but we won’t tell him that. HAHA! Nice to see you, Bren thanks for stopping by 🙂

  6. Hi Lisa,

    Sounds like you had a blast!

    Hawaii is a place I need to visit. Reminds me of our stay in Fiji; just a South to North Pacific difference but many similar elements from the pristine beauty to friendly locals and exotic, isolated island vibe.

    We just arrived in Qatar last week after spending much of last year in the US. Love this place. Wealthiest nation on earth. Palaces – seriously, REAL palaces that could have their own ZIP code – yachts, supercars, man mad luxury islands….it’s like Tony Stark, Bruce Wayne and Scrooge McDuck teamed up to design the place.

    Myanmar next, then Thailand and Malaysia, with a yet to be determined trip in between.

    Thanks for sharing Lisa.

    Ryan Biddulph recently posted…Gondolas Canals Ice Hockey Rinks and Ferris Wheels in a Mall? Welcome to the Villaggio in QatarMy Profile

  7. Looks like you had an amazing trip Lisa. Except the plane mess!
    I can tell I missed you. And I am delighted to see you back.
    Your place looks fabulous under the snow but I imagine it’s quite hard to adjust to this new weather.

    Can’t wait to hear more about your book!
    In the meantime have a sweet weekend and welcome back!
    Marie Kléber recently posted…Words Every Day #5 – Midnight skyMy Profile

    1. Missed you too, Marie! The snow is beginning to melt a bit now and it’s supposed to warm up. We’re used to nonstop rain in winter not all this snow 😛 Thanks, Marie. I’ll definitely do a little write up on the new book. Have a great weekend!

  8. I had to laugh about what you came home to – oh boy. We got 14 inches yesterday. Another 6-10 coming this weekend. Help!
    I used Airbnb in Alaska. Highly recommend!
    I’ve never been to Hawaii but Cassidy has been there a few times.

    1. Right? You guys are getting the big storm in Nor East! Do you have your pantry stocked up? 🙂 Oooh, get Cassidy to take you to Hawaii (with the kids) so much fun for your next family vacay. I know you’re off to Disney World—have a great time!!

  9. Your post and photos brought back memories! I went to Hawaii back during the heyday of Don Ho and “Tiny Bubbles”! The landscape still looks pretty much the same. We did not do any inter-island travel, but we did rent a jeep one day with another couple in our group and drove all over the island. We stayed at Diamond Head, and it was all pretty touristy, but I did enjoy the little day tours we did. This was all with The Abusive Sperm Donor, and his forays into the underbelly of Honolulu notwithstanding, I still enjoyed it. I mostly just ignored him!😉

    1. Don Ho! Sweet. That’s unfortunate about WHO you were there with. Sounds like you may need a return trip (to a different Island) with your sweet hubby. The underbelly of Honolulu? I shudder to think…

  10. So lovely you got to get a way for a bit. So spontaneous to not book your return flight in advance. Such lovely photos by the water too and you look very happy 🙂 Food can be tricky to find sometimes and fast food is always and option, especially it is the last resort or you are not too keen on trying what’s available. It could be against the lase to kill an animal for food, you never know 😉 Pity about the flight back home. It sounded like the crew was not organised well for this trip and I do not think it is polite at all they did not clear the plane prior to landing :/

    These last three weeks have been busy for me. But I like what I’m doing at work and at home so that is great 🙂
    Mabel Kwong recently posted…Why Many Chinese Like Eating Dumplings. And Why The World Does As WellMy Profile

    1. Hi Mabel, yes it was a wonderful trip. It wasn’t my idea to leave it open-ended. I had to sort of let it ride and glad I did…as it was kind of nice, once we were there to not have a return date looming. Well, the roads we traveled had little to offer by way of restaurants. We weren’t expecting that but like I mentioned, it is a vast Island.
      Good to hear you’re busy and enjoying your work, Mabel! Glad you still have time to blog as your writing is so refreshing!

  11. Oh my gosh Lisa! I absolutely LOVED reading all about your trip… and living vicariously through you! 🙂

    I have never been to Hawaii and reading about your travels and how much fun you had makes me want to put it on the top of our wish list. You look adorable in those pics and I’m SO glad you were able to have this carefree and beautiful vacation!

    AC? Not cool. I would have been an UNhappy customer. It sounds like that flight was a hot mess. UGH.
    Christine Carter recently posted…Thoughts On Living A Balanced Life…My Profile

    1. Hi Chris, aw, thank you. So glad you enjoyed the Hawaii journal 🙂
      Something else that happened on the flight…right after take off, one of the flight attendants came to the back of the plane to tell all of us in the last five rows that there was someone with a serious peanut allergy on board. WE were not to eat anything with nuts. Don’t even think about opening a nutty snack. Then when it was finally time to order food (2 1/2 hours in) there was only sushi or fruit and cheese plate. Oh, and there were almonds snack things. I said to the flight attendant ‘but what about the peanut allergy?’ DUH.
      Nice to see you, Chris!

  12. Hi Lisa,

    Wow, you got my jealous side into full blown out rage…

    Just got 2 feet of snow today, plus blizzard winds, and I was barely able to open my front door against the drifts.

    So, yeah, sea turtles sound like quite a treat right now.

    Hey, I’d even settle for the McDonald’s lunch if I could just get my car out of the mess…. yuckk

    Anyway, your stories are inspiring and the photos are just beautiful.

    Thanks for the tour 🙂

    Donna Merrill recently posted…What Makes Your Blog Unique?My Profile

    1. Ha! I don’t blame you, Donna. The winter has been a snowy one this year on West and East coasts. Haha, the McDonald’s lunch wasn’t horrible but there’s always a bit of regret kind of like a hangover. Thanks for stopping by and having a virtual tour of our vacation. 🙂

  13. First off, congrats on your book!!!! Such an accomplishment! And I love that you took a well deserved vakay and planned it as you went, those can really make for the best memories, right?! Love all your photos, you look fabulous! xo!

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