So, it’s been a few days since I’ve posted…and we are here in Hawaii! I’ll start by covering the last few days of our trip first.
After Colorado, we headed to Utah and visited Zion National Park! It was stunning. There was a pet-friendly trail that we took the dogs on for about an hour, then packed back up into the car and drove through a beautiful canyon road.
From there, we went to Long Beach, CA:
And then we finally headed up to our last stop, San Francisco! I have friends there who were kind enough to let us stay with them, and boy was it nice to stay in a house instead of a hotel.
The day after we arrived in San Fran, we drove out to Oakland to drop my car off at the port with Matson, the company we chose to ship it out to Hawaii. All went smoothly with the drop off, and then we spent the next two days sight-seeing and relaxing. My friends have two adorable boys, Finn and Noah, who LOVED the dogs (and the dogs LOVED them, too!)!
Zev is awesome with kids and loves to play with them, but Lexi hasn’t been around too many younger kids. She was a little nervous at first, so we made sure to supervise her time with the boys closely and allowed her to take breaks from the commotion when she needed to. She would hang out with them for a few minutes, and then follow me back downstairs and sit with me while I did laundry or checked my emails. She came out of her shell very quickly, though, and soon we saw that she felt very comfortable with the whole family. She especially liked Noah, who would take the time to just sit with her and quietly pet her and talk to her, which she loves. Soon she was curling right up with the boys, giving kisses, and letting everyone scratch her belly! She has done SO well with all of these changes – I am quite proud of the way she has handled this drastic move. She still looks to us for assurance, of course, but she also draws comfort and courage from Zev, that rock of a big brother. This trip really made them a lot closer:
So, the day finally came for us to fly from San Jose, CA to Honolulu. We were all prepared, but I was still a nervous wreck. My friend Hillary was nice enough to drive us all to the airport early in the morning. Surprisingly, the dog crates, our luggage, us, and the dogs all fit into her Prius hatchback! When we got to the airport, we quickly assembled the dogs’ crates, let them go pee one more time, and them crated up and got everything into the terminal on a few luggage carts. Check-in took almost an hour because we had the two dogs and 5 other pieces of luggage, but everything went smoothly. The last step to the dogs’ check-in was a crate search by a TSA agent – we took each dog out of the crate in the terminal so the agent could examine the crates, and then crated back up without issue. After that it was time to say good-bye to them and go through our own security check. I was a nervous wreck at that point, but the dogs seemed okay. We passed them on to the airport officials and got ready for our flight. A few hours later, we landed without issue!
First, we got our own baggage from the claim area. Then, we took a shuttle to the rental car area to pick up my rental. I got upgraded from an economy size car to a Jeep, so that worked out nicely with all the luggage we had! After we packed up our bags it was finally time to go to the Animal and Plant Quarantine Office to get the dogs. Our friend met us there in a pickup truck so that we could simply slide the crates into the back. By the time we got there, the dogs had already been processed, so I just needed to fill out some paperwork. Everything went so smoothly, and we were so excited to see the dogs! They both looked a little freaked out, which is understandable, so we quickly got off airport property so we could let them out of the crates. They were VERY happy to get out! After that they began to relax and acclimate, and we knew everything would be just fine.
Fast forward a few days: we are settling in and loving Hawaii!! Every day has been absolutely beautiful. Our first night in the state, we stayed at our friend Shawn’s house in the North Shore while we looked at rentals.
We looked at one apartment the first night we arrived and filled out an application. The following day, we looked at an apartment in Waipahu (about 35 min. from Shawn’s house), fell in love, and moved in that afternoon! We were so happy to find a place so quickly. The dogs are really liking all the space we have and it is beginning to feel like home. Yesterday we went to furniture store to buy a mattress and left with that, plus this giant dog bed, for free!
We have met a few of our neighbors and Shawn’s friends, and everyone has been so nice and welcoming. There really is a special “spirit” about this place. So, our next steps are to continue to explore and see the sights, find jobs (full-time for John, part-time for me), and get ready to start school in a little over a week! The past few days have been crazy, but we are really enjoying our new home and look forward to making a lot of memories here. Thanks for following along!