Sunday, February 10, 2019

From Sun to Snow!

Well last week Ty and I were in the Caribbean enjoying the sand and sun (Blog post Pending) and this weekend we're in the mountains of central Idaho...with 34” of fresh powder over the last 48 hours. Holy Crap! It’s been a VERY LONG time since I’ve seen this much snow fall in such a short period of time. (So, if you’re a powder hound with lots of cash come check out the slopes).

Our friends had an available weekend at their condo in Ketchum, so they asked if we wanted to go. And we’re always up for an adventure!

We took the family up Friday after school and weren’t expecting nearly so much snow. But we WERE expecting very cold temperatures, and we had a free pass to the indoor pool and climbing wall, so we didn’t bring our snow gear! Ha!!

Friday night we toured part of the art gallery at Josie's request and saw this neat panting. 

We ate at Despo’s Mexican Grill, which was packed!!! But yummy! Then we crashed. The kids slept in the loft and we got the master suite of course.

The next day the kids were up at 5:45 am (WHY???) and apparently Rhett and Kate started calling 911 which was a lovely callback to get first thing in the morning. We apologized profusely and said everything was fine, but we must not have sounded that convincing because about 15 mins later a knock on the door brought a policeman by. Uggh! We apologized again and told him really everything was fine, we just have a 3 and 6-year-old. 

We had cinnamon rolls and orange juice for breakfast and relaxed watching cartoons. Then we ventured out to see if we could find a sled as there was 12" of new snow on the ground and still heavily snowing.

 We found a sled and came back to the condo, but it wasn’t steep enough, so we tried to head up to Penny Hill, but got on the wrong road. We were turning around at the end and didn’t realize the road dropped off about 2 feet on the shoulder and the truck got stuck. Really stuck! 

We worked at it for about an hour before a friendly passerby tried pulling us out and when it didn’t work, they gave the kids and I a ride to the Sun Valley Club to warm up while Ty waited for the tow truck.  

We felt like hillbillies in Westminster Palace. Yes, there were a few Nordic skiers coming in and out that were also all wet, but 3 rambunctious kids make you stick out a LITTLE more. We mostly hung out in the changing rooms, which is the size of our whole house and way fancier with expensive couches and benches, fancy showers, soaps and sinks (and very fragile dried flowers) but lots of good places for playing hide and seek.

After Ty got unstuck we gave up on the sledding, got some lunch and went to the pool. 

We hung out in the lazy river and splash area and steam rooms for the rest of the afternoon before we checked out the game room. I wanted to note that Josie beat Ty at checkers BADLY!! After we stopped off for some fresh cookies, we ate dinner and headed to bed.

When we woke up the next morning there was additional 20” of snow on the ground.

These are stairs. Ha!

 We got ready for church and when we pulled up to the building this is what we saw. 

Oh well. At least we tried. We headed back and did a little of our own scripture study. 

Then the kids went out to play in all the snow about 5 minutes later Josie came in and said, “Kate’s really stuck, and her boot has come off and I don’t know what to do”. Ty headed outside to help as I watched from the window. He was up to his chest in a snow pile getting her out! After a few tears they gave up that and decided on a nice warm soak in the tub instead. 

Did I mention we’re warm weather people??

We ended up watching Fixer Upper and Windy City Rehab until after lunch. Then we packed up and headed home.

It was a great trip, with lots of excitement! 😊

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Cruising and The Keys

We had an excellent time cruising in the Caribbean over the last week and even had a chance to spend some time in the Florida Keys. I even got to unplug from my phone for the whole week which was awesome!! Ty and I have been on 3 cruises together and each one of them we've gone with our friends, Melanie and Cameron Wilkes. Each time we've had a different group of couples, but they've always been so much fun.

We flew from Salt Lake to Miami on the red eye flight. This was honestly the most turbulent flight I’ve ever been on in my entire life!! And of course, because I get motion sick I threw up and couldn't sleep at all and was nauseous the whole 5 hours, but hey at least Ty got some sleep. We got into Miami at 5:50 in the morning and took a car down to South Beach and had some EXPENSIVE breakfast as we watched the sunrise.  Then we parked our butts on the beach for the next 4 hours.


If you ever get a chance to come here there is excellent people watching. There was a full-blown magazine fashion show photo shoot going on as well as some Instagram wannabe models showing way too much and a mom and daughter combo taking some crazy photos as well.

Once we boarded our ship, the Carnival Glory, we headed up to grab some lunch and nap on the outdoor lounge chairs until our friends go there. The other trips we've been on we only made 3 ports of call but this one had 4 which was kind of cool. This itinerary included Grand Turk, Puerto Rico, Saint Thomas, and Dominican Republic over 7 days.  

The first day we relaxed on the boat as it was a sea day and it was elegant dining that night so an excellent chance to get dressed up. Don't mind the dark lighting...

Monday, we headed to Grand Turk where we walked to Governor’s Beach and had the whole place to ourselves!! We relaxed on the beach and saw a cool shipwreck from one of the previous hurricanes which Ty and I, Shawn and Joanna, and Jeremy explored. 

Ty and the brave Swedish girls diving off the ship!

After that we headed into town to Sunshine’s where we got a bite of Jamaican food to eat which was tasty. We found the best shells from our whole trip on this beach. Beach hair don't care!
 Ty lost his Rx sunglasses and had to do the best he could, and was just being silly here. Good thing he's only half as blind as me or we would have been in trouble!

The next day we didn’t get off the boat in Puerto Rico until 1pm so we enjoyed brunch in the dining room which was delicious! 

Then I did a workout and enjoyed the steam room to clear my head...literally. #ColdSeason
We took a tour around the city and stopped at the San Juan National Historic Site and the next few hours exploring. It was amazing!

They have a city ordinance that you can't paint your house the same color as your neighbors. 

After a little wondering we found a great little taqueria where we got the best pork tacos. Extra charge for the cheese, but so worth it!!

 In case you didn't know...
How to Eat Tacos

The next day we headed to St Thomas beaches for some sun and snorkeling. A few rain showers came that day, but otherwise it was nice and sunny! This is where I got my best sunbathing in!

There were a few videos of a tiny baby shark and some other cool fish, but they wouldn't load.

That night was elegant night again, but the waves were so bad that half the boat got motion sick halfway through their salmon, filet mignon and prawns and yes, I threw up again a few times. TMI I know, but it’s for posterity. 😊 I felt ok after the first time and we went up to get some fresh air and surprisingly we were able to watch the entire Epic Rock show in the theater for 30 mins before we had to get more air. Right before bed it got worse again and even Ty was feeling ill.

After St Thomas we got a chance to hike to the 12 Damajaqua waterfalls in the Dominican Republic. It was a beautiful hike and then we got to cliff dive/jump and slide down some cool waterfalls! Although I really did love all the stops this one was my favorite by just a bit.

Cocoa bean trees! There were these little lemony pods inside that were sour like a gooey starburst! I loved sucking on them. The actual cocoa was inside of these pods. But it wasn't great without butter and sugar! :)

The next day was a sea day in which we spent sleeping in, playing cards, steam rooming, relaxing and watching the dolphins and flying fish from the front of the boat.

We even got to see the Coast Guard med-evac a crew member off another princess ship nearby when he/she got something lodged in his/her throat. I got dressed up for dinner that night as well! That was a bit of a challenge! Ha!

This dish was served several times during our cruise and they placed this plate on the table with the yellow jelly thing and came back with a pitcher of cold creamy fruit soup! It was so good! Peach mango, strawberry! all of them were so good!

Our waitress Kamei was really short and Sam asked her to dance on the pedestal when they did they're last entertainment show for the trip and she kept saying no, no, no. But them she did! She was a really good dancer too!

Saturday, we packed up and said goodbye to our friends and got a car to head south to see the Keys. It’s so bizarre. There are bridges after bridges and then just some fill dirt that they have put on either side of the road in some places as well. I had no idea there were so many Keys. There are 1700 islands and 42 bridges that connect them all. It’s CRAZY! It poured rain for most of the morning then cleared up for the rest of the day. 

We checked into our boat-el near Key West and explored Mallory Square, and Duval Street. We ate some delicious apps for happy hour at Bagatelle. We found the birthplace of key lime pie and enjoyed a slice.

 To all our 7 day on 7 day off workers out there!

Our house is also the Oldest School House which was neat!

The next day after church we drove down the east side of Key West and parked and walked through the botanical gardens at the Tower and visited the southernmost point of the Continental US. We looked for a few different crepe shops and finally found one which was excellent.

It's hard to tell but these are shrimp fleet boats with big nets on either side.

 Zoom in on the sign!

When it started a major downpour, we were a mile from the car and ended up drenched from head to toe walking back! On our drive back to our boat-el we found a nice Mexican restaurant and got even more wet, if that’s even possible, as we ran inside, but the food was amazing, and I got to try wahoo (a type of fish) for the first time.

The view from the bow of our boat that night was incredible with the storm brewing. The sky looked angry and lit up! But the boat was rocking that night!

The next day we packed up and after seeing the Fort Zachary Taylor, we headed back to the mainland for our last night in Florida.

It was only 58 degrees that day. I recall something similar the last time we were here the very same weekend. (I think I might avoid January in Miami next time). We found a yummy Peruvian restaurant and tried some new foods.

 The dish closest doesn't look very good, but it was a delicious chicken curry!

This cheesecake tasted like butterscotch, but the waitress said it was made from a fruit! Cool!

I guess if you live in Miami and operate a 24/7 laundry service theres no need for doors?

The following day we had a nice long walk in the sun to the nature center where we rented kayaks and paddled through the mangroves.

 I never realized how neat these trees were. These are the roots which are out of the water at low tide and soak up nourishment at high tide.

It was the best day to finish our trip on. We enjoyed a snack on the dock, drove to the airport and headed home. We pulled into our driveway at 3 am after some lady who didn’t speak much English refused to move her cat kennel and we were delayed for about an hour before takeoff.

It was an awesome trip, but there’s nothing like home sweet home!! Although I wouldn’t mind a little more sun and beach right now…as it’s snowing.

Thanks, Grandma, for watching the kids all week so we could go enjoy our anniversary trip together!