Welcome to my blog! This is where I share recent weddings & sessions, inspiration, and a little bit about myself. When I'm not photographing you can find me hiking through the woods, cuddling with my pup Sadie, & planning for my next big adventure!
July 29, 2019
Our Hawaiian honeymoon was a dream! Before we went, people told me, “It’s like nothing else in the world!” And my response was always, “of course it’s Hawaii!” But it wasn’t until I experienced it for myself that I truly understood what they meant.
The Kauaiian island greets you with the most beautiful mountain views that can be seen anywhere on the island, filled with colors of green and orange, and flowing with tall ridged cathedrals and low cavernous valleys. Each valley with its own wonder; the bottom of these valley leads to hidden beaches, caves, and waterfalls.
The ocean is clearer than any water you’ve seen, and yet it’s also the bluest water you’ve had the pleasure of laying your eyes on. And when you stand on the island between the mountains and the seas, you are met with a breeze that is salty like the beach and smells of the plants of the mountains.
It truly is like nothing else in the world. But what really made our trip remarkable, is what the island has to teach you. With each new adventure and discovery on the island, she teaches you something about yourself and shows you a new way of looking at life, like you’ve never thought of before.
I could have written a blog post about the highlights of our trip, or what you should do when you visit (I’ll still write a quick list and attach a link at the bottom of this post!). But to me, that didn’t seem like the most interesting or most important thing to share with you from our travels.
Instead, I want to share with you a few things that the island has taught me about myself, about people, and about life.
1. Fear is a Liar.
Hawaiian’s do not live in fear. They only acknowledge it and then move on. Our boat excursion captain said it best, “A little bit of fear is good, it keeps you alive and safe.” Notice he said a little bit. Not a lot. Not an overwhelming amount. Not the kind of fear that stops you in your tracks and makes you turn around. Hawaiians have a relationship with fear that is empowering. That tells them, ‘I’ve got this.’
They climb high mountains, jump off hundred foot cliffs, ride boats into large swells and dark caves, and they have fun doing it! Fear is not real! It is a message from the enemy telling us, we can’t or we won’t.
Fear has controlled me in the past, but it is a daily battle where I am slowly learning to tell fear NO and to just live my life. And Hawaii has really shown me what that looks like.
2. Comparison is the Thief of Joy.
I know this one is so talked about in our current time. But it is so prevalent, and was one of the biggest things the island showed me. the people of this island confused me time and time again. As we discussed with them what brought them to the island, their answers were always so simple. Some just came for the waves to surf, some came for jobs, others just wanted to escape. But what was the same in each story was that they loved the island and they did not have plans to leave.
Life on the island is so much simpler. There isn’t this overwhelming need to be like, look like, or sound like anyone else. People don’t have instagram pulled up on their phones in public, and everyone is just so present in the moment.
I’m going to be really honest for a moment and say that in life and in business comparison has been such a huge struggle for me. To the point where I would hit an achievement I had been working towards for a year, feel happy for a moment, and then start thinking about what was next and what I hadn’t yet accomplished.
But as I was driving down the mountain side with my husband next to me and the beautiful mountains surrounding me and the water of the ocean below, I had a moment of clarity. That my husband being with me, the view in front of me, and the wind blowing back my hair was all that mattered to me in that moment. And guys it has been a while since that has been all that mattered to me. I write this with tears welling up in my eyes, because this one is freeing.
There are so many people in the world living their lives, but why should I try to be like them or worry about being better or achieving more. Because that just isn’t the way to live. We are all people and we are all just trying to enjoy life. So from now on I am living for me and embracing all of the moments ahead.
3. God’s Got you.
I know this is a long post and I am really pouring my heart out, so thanks for sticking with me. I’m going to make this one short and simple.
If God can create mountains this big, with intricate designs and breathtaking magnitude, surely he can get you through anything, and carry you to the tops of the mountains.
4. No Mountain is too big to climb.
Our troubles, our challenges, and our journeys can all just seem too big for us to get over. But after climbing these God made, gigantic mountains and looking at the view from the top, I know that no mountain and no problem is too big too climb. As long as you put one foot in front of the other you’ll make it and it will be so worth it.
And it doesn’t matter how fast or slow you get there, because it’s your journey!
5. The Bird’s Eye View is the clearest.
These mountains can seem so big and overwhelming, but when you fly above this island you are reminded just how small it is. It is such a good reminder to us, that when we are faced with failure, fear, comparison, or anything else that can overwhelm us, that we should take a step back and look at our lives as a whole instead of feeling stuck in a moment or a feeling.
6. I’ve got this.
Y’all, I’ve jumped off rocks into the ocean, climbed on crumbling mountain tops in the clouds, road on a tiny boat out on the blue sea, swam feet away from a sea turtle in the reef, and rock climbed down muddy slopes to an 80 foot waterfall. I’ve got this!
Hawaii has a way of telling you YES when you are wanting to say NO. She pulls you into her amazing landscape and makes you do things you’ve only dreamed you would do.
I have been waiting for this trip for a lifetime and now that I have been there, it feels like an accomplishment within itself. And I am so excited for more of life’s adventures to come!
7. It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.
Hawaii sure does have beautiful destinations, but most of our trip was spent in between, either in a car or on foot traveling to get the these wondrous destinations. And some of our best memories from this trip didn’t happen while we were looking out from the top of the mountain. They happened while we were hiking up hill through rooted paths in high elevation and slipping down muddy trails that had us covered in dirt.
The destination is sweet, but the journey is even sweeter.
8. Remember to celebrate like a child.
Journey’s can be hard, hitting goals can be hard, life can be hard. My Dad gave some of the best advice to me in a note on my wedding day. He said, “Have fun with your husband in Hawaii, play like children together.”
Sometimes life can be so serious or distracting that we forget to have fun! Hawaii taught me to celebrate myself, my marriage, and our victories in every moment!
9. Patience and endurance in all things.
After our long hike up to the top of this mountain (pictured above), all we saw were clouds. We took a few pictures and still, just clouds. We could have left and been upset with our lack of a view, but instead we decided to hangout for a bit on the top of this wet dewey mountain, just to take it all in.
If any place can teach you that the rain can’t last forever, it’s Hawaii. It rains almost every day on the island, but the rain never seems to last more than 15 minutes. Well, sure enough, the clouds parted for a few minutes with just enough time for me to snap this photo of our view from the top.
All that we could say is WOW. Because our patience and endurance paid off.
Hawaii’s climate is always changing, one minute things can be calm and sunny, and the next it is windy with rain falling down on you. It teaches you that change is good.
Thank you so much if you made it all the way through this post! I loved getting to share my heart about the island with you all. Here is a list of our favorite activities we did and a link to all of the top hikes in Kauai.
Our Favorite Adventures:
We Love to travel! Thinking of having a destination wedding in a beautiful location? We would love to join you to document the entire thing! Fill out a contact form and we will put together a custom quote just for you!