Saved From Serious Disappointment by the Keiki Lani (Kids camp) at Fairmont Kea Lani

GirlsCocktailsRoysphoto You know how there are certain things you know that will excite your child that you just can’t wait to tell them? You know how you rev them up beforehand to maximize the joy you know they’ll show in their faces? You know how sometimes you can even use that thing to help instill good behavior for a bit?

There were two main reasons Songwriter wanted to see Hawaii – hula lessons and volcanoes (oh and Hawaii food). Ever since she heard about such things from preschool classmates last year, she has been campaigning for a trip there. That’s largely why we’re here this week in Maui. My husband’s company shuts down for the week before 4th of July, so it was an opportune time to take a little trip.

Now, she didn’t really care which island we visited as long as she could take hula lessons and see volcanoes. We chose Maui because it was purported to be the best island for kids activities. Thus, getting them into hula lessons and perhaps an artsy fartsy crafts class making leis shouldn’t be difficult, right? I mean, it’s Hawaii for goodness sake. There should be hula lessons up the gazoo everywhere you looked, right? <derisive snicker> Yea, rrrrrrrrrright.

Frustrating is a rather apt word to describe our search for girls’ hula lessons. Seems the large hotels in the area have cornered the market on such activities for kids. Apparently, there is no private or group instruction for hula lessons unless you are staying at a particular resort that advertises such benefits. And you know what? Most of them make these activities available only to their guests. Can you begin to understand our dilemma?

Our first three days of our stay here have been idyllic in their eyes – beach then pool, beach then pool, beach then pool. It was a routine the girls quickly fell into quite happily. I was worried they would never want to leave our condo resort. But that was fine as we desperately searched for hula lessons online. We then chatted with the concierge at our resort…who used to know a lady that gave private hula lessons for kids but was now pregnant. And no, she didn’t know anyone else that did it. I asked one of the workers at Hilo Hattie (the Hawaii store) and she recommended that we call some of the local hotels and perhaps they’ll let them into their program. So, back online we went.

I found a list of kids’ camps (Keiki Lani) in the surrounding area, you guessed it, attached to the large hotels in the area. While most of them included the exclusively for our guests line in their descriptions, there were a couple that did not. I called them both, hoping. One absolutely said no. The other had to have the program supervisor call me back because we were not guests of the hotel. In the meantime, my husband happened upon the Whaler’s Village in Kaanapali, just north of Lahaina. Daily Hawaiian activities it said. Hula lessons, lei making – all free! Yipppppppppeeeeeeeeee! We thought this would be perfect. We’d already made reservations at the Old Lahaina Luau. So, we could while away the afternoon at this mall making leis, having lunch and sightseeing until the luau began. The girls, of course, were excited. In fact, when we found it online two days ago, we started revving them up.

Horrifed was the word my husband used to describe his feeling when we walked up to the lei-making table at that mall. The girls had been jumping up and down when they spied the table.

“Are you on the list?” the lei-making instructor asked.

“No, where is it? We’d like to sign up our daughters” replied my husband.

“It’s right here but sorry, it’s already full for today,” the lady said and immediately turned her back on him.

I walked up with Storyteller and he told me what had just transpired. I could tell he was at a loss…and a bit frustrated. The disappointed looks on the girls’ faces and their innocent pleas to sit at the table (there was room, after all) was one of those moments every parent dreads. Guilt. Disappointment. Ugh. Off to the side, was a toy store. I directed them in there to distract them from the moment. I told my husband I was going to call that one kids’ camp I was waiting to hear from. He agreed (and as I found out later, let each twin buy a toy…parental guilt…gotta love it!).

I was prepared to beg the camp director to let our girls in. Luckily, I didn’t have to. Debra was very sweet on the phone and in fact, had tried to call me yesterday but my phone kept ringing busy. Sure, the girls could be part of the camp. Whew! That’s all I had to hear. What a relief! I signed them up that moment. It is part of the Fairmont Kea Lani Resort in Wailea, just down the main street from our resort. About 10 minutes away. So psyched! And so are the girls. Mission accomplished…well, soon anyway.

An original It’s Never Easy But It’s Always Fun blog post.

You may also find MommyTwinGirls at Silicon Valley Moms Blog telling tales of parenting in Silicon Valley, at Mad About Multiples recounting the ups and downs of raising twins and at Solheim Photography posting favorites from her latest photo shoots.

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