24 Dec

Mele Kalikimaka

After a taekwondo tournament this morning, we had nothing planned for the afternoon, so after reading the day’s entertainment section in the local paper, I took action. First, I dragged the kids to the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani to check out their gingerbread village.

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They found the Swiss chalet, but were not half as impressed as I was by chef Ralph’s gingerbread replica of Iolani Palace, America’s only royal residence.

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From there we walked (via the Apple store for some unrelated technical advice) to the Sheraton Waikiki to see the sand sculptures.

Santa and Mrs Claus at the Sheraton Waikiki

I expected them to all be together, but they were scattered around the expansive lobby/shopping/activity level. We soon found another sculpture though.

Santa and Mrs Claus at the Sheraton Waikiki

The third sculpture was near a table offering free gingerbread decorating. How could we refuse?

Decorating cookies at the Sheraton Waikiki

Cookies in hand, we walked down the beach to the Halekulani where I had read that Santa would soon be arriving in his canoe.

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Sure enough, there were little kids in adorable red and green aloha wear on the beach, singing hawaiian style Christmas songs, and Santa’s canoe was making it’s approach.

Santa's Helpers at the Halekulani

There were no elves (undoubtedly all too busy at the North Pole), but T-Shirted santa’s helpers cordoned off a landing zone and kept a path open for the jolly one.

Santa arrives at the Halekulani

And, accompanied by two paddlers and a pair of hula girls, he disembarked and handed out candy canes on his way to the hotel lobby to see the waiting children.

Having had enough Christmas cheer for one day, we continued along the beach and back to our car and headed home. We stopped along the way to take a look at Air Force One, but for security reasons, were asked to delete our photo. Though the kids had themselves been on planes as large as Air Force One, they were impressed to hear that it was more like a combo hotel room and office inside rather than just the rows upon rows of seats they are used to.

We arrived home just in time to answer a Skype call from daddy and unwrap a few presents together.

So, from our corner of the world to yours, we wish everyone a Merry Christmas, and more importantly, the joys of sharing kindness with each other no matter what you celebrate.