Mimi had thought I was finished with my final birthday surprise for her back in January, but little did she know……I had just one more schemed up for this Hawaii trip. This one last surprise was both nerve wrecking to plan and to execute, for it involved getting my sis onto a plane 10,000 ft. up in the air and then convincing her to jump out. Yes, this last and final surprise was a skydiving excursion that I booked for her. 🙂
A few years ago, I was able to cross skydiving off my bucket list during a trip to Hawaii and had an amazing experience. At the time, I thought to myself how great it’d be if my sis could also experience it one day, so when we decided to meet up in Oahu, I just knew I had to give her the ultimate surprise!
To carry out my surprise successfully, I first had to figure out the logistics of
1.) Making sure my sis packed tennis shoes with her
2.) Getting all of us to agree on leaving the resort on the day that the excursion was booked
Knowing how much my sis liked to hike, I told her in advance that I had planned a hiking day for us in North Shore, and to be sure she and Brianne would have the proper shoes. 🙂 On the day of the excursion, we were all geared up for our hike in the morning and with my heart thumping like crazy, I gave my sis the address to the skydiving place as the hike location….
It was about a 30 minute drive and as the GPS lady told us we’ve “reached our destination”, we were right at the gate with a sign that read “Skydive Hawaii”.
“Turn in here” I instructed nervously. My sis looked confused as she made the turn and said, “But this says Skydive Hawaii…..”
At that point, I think it suddenly hit her and she looked straight at me.
“Surprise!” I squealed with nervousness and excitement. “You’re going skydiving!”
She looked at me as if I had gone crazy. “No way,” she said. “I’m not doing it.”
I went into full panic mode and started rambling off reasons that she needed to go through with it.
“I paid in full already!”
“It’s the best experience ever!”
“If I can do it, you can! You’re so much braver than I am!”
“It’s your 40th! You have to make it unforgettable!”
As Mimi continued to shake her head, I resorted to begging.
“Just try it, I promise you’ll love it!”
“Pleassssssssssse do it!”
After awhile, I was able to convince her to go through with the tutorial session before making her final decision. En route to the tutorial, she saw a few people coming back from their jumps and asked how they felt. Their high energy and enthusiasm must have been convincing enough because shortly after, Mimi agreed to do it.
The girls and I patiently waited for about an hour, and we were jumping up and down in excitement when we finally saw her parachuting down to the ground.
As you can see from the photos above, Mimi was all smiles when she landed, and said she absolutely loved the experience! Yay! I was relieved that my final surprise was a success! 🙂
For the remainder of our trip, we continued with our no-agenda goal and stuck by the pool and beach most of the time.
For our final day together, we decided impromptu that we’d go to a luau since Mimi and Brianne had never been. The closest luau to us was at the Polynesian Cultural Center so we purchased our tickets online and headed over. Due to the lack of planning, by the time we arrived the luau was almost ready to begin and we didn’t get to enjoy the pre-activities, which was a bummer….but I guess that’s the tradeoff to spontaneity sometimes!
And being the total goofballs that we are together, we spent our last night taking silly selfies back at the hotel….
Mimi and Brianne left in the wee hours of the morning the next day. When Bridgette and I woke up to see their empty bed next to us, it was hard to contain our sadness. It was February 20th, the day of Bridgette’s birthday, and our flight home wasn’t due until late that evening, so I told Bridgette I was up for anything she’d like to do together. We started off just relaxing in our room, and I couldn’t resist some photos of my 8 year old “baby”!
In the early morning, Bridge wanted to go swimming again, so off we went to the pool even though it was starting to rain outside.
After that, she wanted to check out the Activities Center to see what else we could do and decided that as her special birthday treat, she’d like to try horseback riding. At 8, she was just old enough for this activity, but I was a tiny bit nervous since this would be her first horseback riding experience without a trainer actually holding onto the horse. She had tried horseback riding in Lanai previously, but in a much more controlled environment.
Trusting her bravery and my own maternal instinct that she was ready, we braved the rain and headed over to the stables. There, we met with a really friendly guide who gave us raincoats and introduced the gentle, beautiful horses to us.
Our guide led us through a beautiful trail right alongside the coast, and then into the forest. Despite the rain, we really enjoyed the amazing journey! Our horses stopped often to graze on the grass, and we didn’t have the heart to stop them. 🙂
I was really glad Bridgette picked this activity for us, and that we got to experience such a special time together. After that, we packed up our luggages and left the North Shore…but not before a last stop at the shrimp truck!
We drove back to Honolulu, had a yummy dinner at Bridgette’s choice of restaurant, and ended our trip with wonderful fireworks on the beach before catching our flight to go home…
Here’s a fun video recap:
See you next time Hawaii!!