Unexpected Surprises

Throughout the planning process, there was one traditional element of weddings that we knew we were going to have to do without: a honeymoon. Now, as I’m sure you can imagine, this was not because we didn’t want one; since we’re paying for the entire wedding ourselves, there simply was no money left to plan one. Trying to plan a mini-moon was definitely on my to-do list, but it was always put on the back-burner. Around the time we hit the six-month mark, I started bringing it up again to see what Mr. B would say. All of the mini-moon ideas I suggested were immediately dismissed by FI, including:

http://www.weddingbee.com/

Catalina Island, where we got engaged last year!

Photo New Desert Times

http://www.weddingbee.com/

Or Disneyland (Honestly, I KNEW he’d shoot that one down, but it’s worth a shot, right?)

Photo via Wikitravel

But then my wonderful mother and step-father reminded us that they had an extra week at their timeshare that they would be happy to give us! The only thing was that it is in Puerto Vallarta. Now don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with Puerto Vallarta (I’ve actually NEVER been there), and I’m not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, but Puerto Vallarta wasn’t Mr. B’s or my dream honeymoon. After doing a bit of research through her timeshare exchange group, my awesome mom shared the great news that we could use their timeshare in Hawaii. You see, if Mr. B could choose ANYWHERE to go for our honeymoon, Hawaii is at the top of his list. Ever since we went to Kauai last year for K and R’s wedding, he has been obsessed with going back! And after working so hard to make sure that I would have the wedding of my dreams, knowing that we could take his dream honeymoon made my day!

Of course, a honeymoon, especially one to Hawaii, isn’t cheap, even with the hotel paid for. Thankfully, my mom came through again with helping to cover the airfare! Talk about having wonderful family! Now it is just a matter of choosing an island to go to! We really had it narrowed down to our top two choices, leaving the rest of the choosing up to my mom and step-dad:

1. MAUI

http://www.weddingbee.com/

Kaanapoli Beach photo via desktopwallpapers4.me

Maui was our number one choice for many reasons, the most important of which being that Mr B. had never been there. I’ve been there a couple of times already since my grandpa has owned a house there as far back as I can remember; my sister and I went to visit with him in high school, and once when we were younger with our family. Even though I have been there, I was never able to really experience the island as an adult. There are also a lot of fun activities that don’t involve going into the water, which made it high on my list. On the other hand, there was plenty of water-oriented activities I would do, and four-star golf courses for FI to enjoy.

2. KAUAI

Mr. B and me in Kauai for K & R’s destination wedding last year

Personal photo

Despite the fact that we went to Kauai last year for K & R’s wedding and it’s the only island Mr. B has been to, Kauai was still number two on our list. Mr. B really enjoyed our vacation last year (it’s the WHOLE reason Hawaii was his top pick!), and having been there for a wedding, we really only got to spend a couple of days enjoying the island. There were a lot of trails and beaches left for us to discover.

Did you receive any unexpected surprises in the planning process? Were you lucky enough to be gifted a honeymoon?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Buffalo

Location:
San Diego, CA
Wedding Date:
September 2012
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  1. Member
    chocolatecoveredstrawberry 532 posts, Busy bee @ 11:35 am

    That is so exciting about your honeymoon! I am actually in a similar situation- my FFIL is gifting us a honeymoon as well using his vacation timeshare. We are also planning on going to Hawaii. We are leaning towards the Big Island, but Maui looks great too! I’ll be on the lookout for updates on your honeymoon!

  2. Member
    mstoadstool 2485 posts, Buzzing bee @ 1:24 pm

    Wow, that is so awesome!

  3. Guest Icon Guest
    april, Guest @ 3:33 pm

    How can anyone shoot down DISNEYLAND?!

  4. Member
    ChicagoDreamer 509 posts, Busy bee @ 4:12 pm

    I’ve been to both islands about two summers ago on a two week vacation. I think both are amazing…it just depends what kind of experience you want! I found Kauai to be very relaxing and more laid back. I think Maui is a bit more active. I think you’d be able to have fabulous experiences at either, you just need to do a little research! I’m interested to see what you pick!

  5. Member
    mskoloa 75 posts, Worker bee @ 5:07 pm

    This is so funny! I have literally copied and pasted this post about three times for bees who are thinking of coming to Kauai!

    I don’t think I can put pictures as a reply for this post, but you are more than welcome to see what I wrote and posted here: http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/hawaii-honeymoon-help-please-1

    I live on Kauai btw, and I love it.

  6. Member
    bnsp09 208 posts, Helper bee @ 5:26 pm

    I have not yet and seeing as my parents are broke and the rest of the family cares more about themselves then us I don’t for see anything coming from my side and my soon to be in laws are fighting me over my kids calling them by their first names which I don’t agree with…. I doubt there’s any coming from that side either. At this point I honestly wish we would have taken my kids and the few very close family members I’d want to be there and eloped! We are spending $15,000 on this wedding and the families have made everything so much more of an issue then it should be. Who we should invite or not invite, the food not being what they like, not liking ideas for places, decorations, honeymoon ideas and more! It’s pathetic!
    You are so lucky to have such a wonderful family!!! Make sure you tell them how much you appreciate them for all they do!

  7. Member
    jacofblues 1468 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:00 am

    We are honeymooning in hawaii too! But on Oahu because it was the most affordable! Yay for your two picks though!

  8. Member
    Averne 84 posts, Worker bee @ 7:08 am

    My in-laws gave us $1,000 for our honeymoon, which we mostly used for hotels. We had them book the reservations for us, and they gave us the leftover cash.

    Their surprise was an upgrade at our first hotel. We had planned to book a basic room with a queen sized bed, and they surprised us with an upgrade to the deluxe room with a deck, fireplace and private hot tub.

    We also got a lot more money at the wedding than I was expecting, some of which we used for lunches and dinners on our honeymoon. So technically, both our families gave us a lovely trip!

  9. Member
    This Time Round 10219 posts, Sugar Beekeeper @ 8:32 am

    What a FABULOUS Surprise.
    Sounds like you have an AWESOME Mom.
    I’ve never been to Hawaii, so I get why it would be difficult to choose… lol, too many Islands, not enough time.

  10. Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 9:27 am

    What a great surprise, Hawaii is one of my top places to visit too!

  11. Member
    KatieD52413 99 posts, Worker bee @ 9:37 am

    We were VERY fortunate that my future in-laws are paying for our whole 10 night trip to Kauai and Maui which was such a (welcome) surprise. I can’t wait to read through your re-caps and see which hotels/ excursions you pick!!

  12. Member
    buffalo 178 posts, Blushing bee @ 1:06 pm

    @chocolatecoveredstrawberry: I looked into the Big Island! But there wasn’t as much to do (that I’d do since I don’t like the water) so thats how we narrowed it down.
    @Miss Toadstool: I know! We were very surprised!@april: THANK YOU! Yea he’s crazy! lol. He has already committed to Disney WORLD in 5 years though, so I guess I can’t complain!
    @ChicagoDreamer: Yes, I need to always be busy! Which is another reason why maui is #1!
    @mskoloa: We went to Kauai last year, and we LOVED it! Mr. B had so much fun hiking to all the waterfalls!
    @bnsp09: Well if it makes you feel better, my mom is awesome, and for the most part the rest of the family is too. But we are FULL of drama!! And we paid for everything else ourselves! Its hard for sure! But it’s worth it :) Especially since you’re paying, so it’s really YOUR decision!
    @Jacofblues: I’ve never been to Oahu! That will be on our list next! Although I will say I don’t think Mr. B will like me dragging him to all the LOST filming locations, because that would definitely happen!
    @Averne: Having the flights and hotel rooms paid for before hand definitely makes paying for everything else easier! Hawaii is EXPENSIVE!
    @This Time Round: There are so many islands! (well Ok there’s like 5 or 6) Mr. B’s goal is to eventually go to all of them!
    @Mrs. Pony: I definitely agree! There’s so much to do there!
    @KatieD52413: Yes I will definitely be posting that! I will say you will love Kauai! It is awesome!

  13. Member
    genie 723 posts, Busy bee @ 9:26 pm

    We were gifted a honeymoon of our choosing, and it really helped take the pressure off and we enjoyed it so much! Both Maui and Kauai look amazing!

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