Sunday, December 28, 2008

Family Pics

Today we went to the beach to try out the new Camera. Here are some of the pics but in much lower resolution than the originals.

Today we went to the beach to try out the new Camera. Here are some of the pics but in much lower resolution than the originals.

Mtn Bike on the Windward Side

Friday Morning Heather and I got up early and headed to the east side of the island to go mtn biking with John, Jon, Jim, and Cory. We arrived about 10 minutes late and Heather had a mechanical right from the start. The Windward side of the island gets alot more rain than the Leaward side and the trails were pretty muddy. We started out on a pretty sketchy trail with some steep descents. After about 10 minutes we decided to cut our losses and head back to the Maunawillie Ditch trail. This trail is mostly double track that twists back and forth. When it is dry, you can really hammer but this day that wasn't the case. I started out trying to take pictures of Heather riding ahead of me. After a couple of near slips, I put the camera away to keep both hands on the bars. The trail is an out and back and on the way back, Heather and I fell back from the rest of the riders. We decided to turn right at the end of the trail and check out the views from above. Jon caught up with us and told us the rest of the riders were waiting at the car. I called John and let him know we were going to check out the top trail. He was going to join us after he fixed his tire. However, Jim ran into some bad luck and ripped the derailler off his bike. John gave him a ride back to Bellows. Jon L. had also had a flat. After he changed it, we kept riding up until we came to the trail head for the Maunawillie Demonstration trail. This trail had some sweet single track that ran along the ridge. We rode it quite a ways then turned around for a nice descent. When we were done, we were covered in mud. Heather and I took the long way home and stopped at Momentum where she test rode a nice bike which may make a good graduation present.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

A very picture centered Christmas

This year Chris and I had kind of a unintentional themed Christmas. The Theme was pictures. I got her a Kodak Photo Printer and she got me a Panasonic Digital Camera. We also used some money and bought a new Pentax DSLR camera. One might wonder why we needed so many new camera's. The SLR takes outstanding pictures but it can be difficult to take on the bike or hiking. Our older digital camera was starting to show the effects of many rough rides on the bike and drops to the floor. Stephanie got a PS2 from Santa, Heather some new running shoes and a pair of Oakley's and Courtney an IPOD Nano and Ginger got a new chew toy. There were alos alot of other things for each of us under the tree.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

TheEnd of a 10 yr Drought and the Steeles Were There

I have always been a Notre Dame Fan. I remember as a young boy watching the games with my Dad who is also a lifelong Irish Fan. I passed the love of Notre Dame down to my children. When Courtney was less than 2 she used to cheer "Go Notre Dame, Go Notre Dame" while we watched the games. This year we were thrilled to find out they were coming to Hawaii for the Sheritan Hawaii Bowl. Last year we were able to recieve free tickets to the game but this year the free tickets were gone in less than an hour and I had to pony up $200.00 for us to go. We arrived at the stadium a couple hours early prepared to do some tail gating. We ate our wraps, chips and had a few cold ones before making our way to the stadium. We were the only people with Notre Dame shirts on but all the Hawaii Fans were very friendly.

We headed to our seats around 230 stopping to pick up a couple of shirts for the girls. The tickets I ordered where supposed to be the best available but we were one row from the top of the stadium and there were a lot of open seats below us. It didn't bother me as it gave me an opportunity to try out the new digital SLR camera we bought with some Christmas Money from my Parents.I haven't figured out all the settings yet but i did manage to get some pretty good shots. I used the 300 mm lens from our film SLR and was able to get some great close ups of the players on the field. I did find out however that 10 MP pics are huge and take forever to download so I think i will keep it on a lower setting from now on. The game was pretty anti-climatic as Notre Dame managed to beat Hawaii pretty handily. It still was a great game and I am glad we got to watch it as a family. What a way to start off Christmas Eve. Tonight we are going to Midnight Mass as we always do. Courtney is Serving and Steph is ushering so it will just be Chris, Heather and I in the pews.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Biking, Surfing and Golf with Heather

It is always nice to have Heather back for a visit as she is willing to do stuff with her Dad that the other girls don't always enjoy doing. This weekend I took full advantage of her being home. We started off Friday night with a round of golf at the lighted Par 3 Course on Hickam.
Our round started off kind of slow with both of us getting our money's worth as far as the number of strokes we were taking. I couldn't put to save my life and Heather was having trouble getting any distance off the tee. Heather's luck changed on the 7th and 8th hole where she par 'd both holes. I finished up with my only Par on the 9th hole. Chris walked along with us keeping score and making sure that every stroke was counted. I am not sure what we would have done with out her there :) Well, we probably would have taken a few more mulligans.

Heather has been wanting to try surfing since we moved to Hawaii and I finally agreed to take her. One of my co-workers told me about taking her boys to White Plains beach near Barber's Point. This is a navy beach that rents surf boards. Most people take a lesson before they attempt to surf or at least get some advise from an experienced surfer, but Heather and I decided to see if we could teach ourselves. We weren't very successful. I did learn why surfers wear shirts as I managed to make my chest look and feel like someone drug me across an artificial turf football field on my chest. I also managed to tear up my feet on some coral. I also learned that surfing takes patience, balance and skill none of which are my strong suits. It still was alot of fun and I am sure I will try it again. Heather and I also spent some time playing catch with a football. After surfing, we hurried home so we could get ready to go on the annual Honolulu Lights Bike Ride.

We met with several cyclist from clubs all around Oahu at the Bike Shop on King Street. Several of riders were really dressed for the season including HACC DADDY, John Girmsey, who dressed as St. Nick. We also had elves, Rudolf and a variety of other's dressed with lights, trees and bells on their Bikes. I did manage to put some battery operated lights on my bike but didn't have time to do anything else because we got back late from the Beach. We still had a great time. Chris and the rest of the family met us at Ward Center for Starbucks then we drove down past the lights so they could see them.