Saturday, August 28, 2010

Cancun--Day 4--XPLORE and Margaritaville

Day 4 had us traveling about an hour away to a zip-lining adventure park called XPLORE.
They offered 2 zip-lining courses, rafting through a cave, swimming through a cave, driving an ATV vehicle through trees, caves, and bridges, and a huge buffet with about any type of food you could want.
Good Morning Cancun!

The entrance to Xplore!

Kristi, David, and me with our cool helmets on--in the background is a dinosaur
in some water--which is where one of the zip lines ended.

Craig and Terri--ready for their adventure as well!

Putting our items in the lockers and getting ready to head out--
we started with the ATV because zip-lining had a huge line--we got right into the ATV and enjoyed driving--especially through the caves. Layne and I decided to leave our camera in the locker--there was a lot of water areas here and plus they had cameras set up all over the adventure park that took pictures for us. We plan on ordering pictures soon and then I can put more of our fun and adventure on the blog for you to actually witness our zip-lining fun!

This was the huge heart that beat and was the main area for the whole adventure park--
if you could find your way back to the heart, then you could get anywhere!
We all enjoyed zip-lining, except we did zip-lining over the lunch hour and we were starving--plus every time you zip-lined, then you had to climb stairs to do another zip-line--I loved it, but I was sure feeling 30 years old!
We did the rafting and swimming after lunch--rafting was probably my favorite--it was through a cave with crystal clear water!

We finally made it back to the hotel around 7 that night--Adriane and Uncle Clay had
arrived and Jake and Janell had kept them entertained by enjoying the hotel, pool, and then on to playing cards--the 4 of them were going to enjoy zip-lining on Wed.!

We decided since the whole gang was here to go out to eat. Bubba Gump Shrimp sounded fun, but as we neared some restaurants, Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville had great music coming from inside and they also gave us a coupon for everyone to get a free Margarita--so we headed inside for great food and wonderful entertainment!

Janell and Jake--enjoying the BIG chair!

Layne and I in the Margarita chair!

My In-Laws--what can I say!--we did get a wonderful group picture of all of
us in colorful sombros--but Terri has the pic--so I will have to get it from her soon.

Our food--Jake has cool Kabobs and Nell and David had the
biggest pickles we had ever seen!

The night would not have been complete without dancing, singing, shots, and
a free shirt give away! We had a table up front and we made sure Craig got chosen to try and win a free shirt! 4 guys were the contestants--each got a shot of Tequilla and then they had to dress up and do a dance--Craig did not win, but we yelled loud for him and he gave it a great shot!
Here he is doing his Jamaican Dance that he had to do--all the guys
were pretty entertaining--although the winner was the guy from Mexico who had to dance the Mexican Hat Dance--he knew the whole routine--it seemed pretty rigged, but we laughed alot and had a wonderful time!

Craig in all his dancing glory--he also got a free
Margarita--so maybe it was worth it?!

All the ladies as we were leaving Margaritaville for the night!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Cancun--Day 3: Beach Day

We spent some of each day in the pool or on the beach, but Monday was reserved all day for relaxing and enjoying the beach and water. Janell and Kristi captured a volleyball right away, so we tried out the net in the pool--as we added more people, it was more fun, but we spent a lot of time chasing the ball. We decided to save more volleyball action for the beach!
I loved lounging by the pool and jumping in whenever I wanted, but this was also the day I missed the kiddos the most--I know they would have loved the water and the sand, but it was also super nice not to have to keep an eye on them or worry about naps--we just got to look out for us--you need that break once in awhile! Oh ya--did I mention aqua water and white sand beaches??!

Nell, Layne, and Kristi--some volleyball action.

Moving on to sand volleyball--I played some of the first game--we played our girls against the guys--the ladies were doing really good until we started keeping score...and then my husband slammed one right into my face--he meant to slam the ball--just not in my face--right into my cheek where my sunglasses were--I finished that game and then decided being photo girl and beach bum was more fun! Layne did feel really bad--especially when I ended up with a bruise a few days later! The rest of the family then joined up with some other beach volleyball players and enjoyed several games of volleyball.

The spectators in the pool watching the volleyball match.

My husband--he is so into the game when he has time to make faces at the camera!

Miss Farm Girl--in all her glory!

And Mr. Pool Boy...

Layne--cooling off in the ocean.

Bobble heads--cooling off in the ocean before
another volleyball match.
Jake, Nell, Kristi, and David in the ocean.

That night Kristi, Janell, and I decided to walk across the street to the strip mall--right as we left it started down pouring. We decided to go ahead and shop--figuring the rain would not last long--it lasted a lot longer than we thought! So cold and wet, we found our way to a chocolate city restaurant and a little slice of heaven! We shared gourmet icecream in a glass cup rolled in peanut butter and drizzled with chocolate and carmel and nuts--plus whipped cream and a cherry--it was amazing! I decided to try some white chocolate hot chocolate an although it was tasty and warmed us up--with the icecream--it was a little much and it was all the three of us could do to share a cup without bursting--a glass of water tasted awesome after all that sweetness!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Cancun-Day 2: Chichen Itza

Sunday morning had us up early to get ready for our adventure to Chichen Itza--who can complain when you wake up to sunrises like this one--Thank you God for sunrises!
Terri had arranged for us to be taken to Chichen Itza in a private van with a tour guide that spoke English. Milton was his name and he was a true joy all day--answering our many questions about life in Mexico and even helping us bartor and shop at a market at the end of the day--here is our day at Chichen Itza!

Waking up to a beautiful sunrise!

Here we all are in front of Milton's van ready to take off on a 2 hour journey.

Our first view of Chichen Itza--the Maya ruins.
We had another tour guide here who met us and took us on a 2 1/2 hour tour--we
had no idea the place was so big--he told us to see the whole thing, it would
take you 3 days. Well, the ruins were very impressive, but 2 1/2 hours in the hot, humid sun
was enough for all of us--luckily there were many shade trees.
This is one of the 7 wonders of the world, so we can say we have seen it!

This is what welcomes you to Chichen Itza!

Down the side of this temple was the body of a snake with the head of
the snake being at the bottom by the grass.

Listening to our tour guide.

Layne and I at Chichen Itza.

More sculpture work.

There were 2 of these big walls and in the middle is where the Maya's played a game.
In the middle of the wall close to the top is a ring in which the players had to get a ball through. The kicker is that the winner got beheaded--which of course was a great honor!

Where's iguana at?????

Jacob taking an upclose shot of this cool piece.

Our family at Chichen Itza.
Another part of the ruins.

This circle building was the last stop on our tour--we left around 12:30 and there were
tons of people just coming in--with the hot sun pouring down, we
were thankful that we had come in the early morning!

Lunch was by far the most unusual part of our whole trip--Milton had
encouraged us to try Mexican food for lunch--sounded great to us--he took us someplace where he knew the food was good and safe for us Americans to eat--also very important.
It was a Mexican buffet--we got to the restarunt around 1:00 and we were the only ones there--very weird, but we had great service--we could barely take the last bite before they were swiping our plates away to get us a new one. This was a buffet, but the waiters all served you the food--and they all wore masks--so that was a little different as well.
While we were eating, several of the staff got on stage and did some dancing for us.

The dancing was fun to watch--but again a little weird since we were the only ones
in the restaruant--and then of course after they had finished their dance, they held up a
sign for "Tips for the Dancers"--we saw this several times throughout our vacation in Cancun--despite the strange environment, the food was good!

After lunch, Milton took us back to Cancun--right as we got to Cancun, Kristi and I had to
use the bathroom, so Milton found something similar to a gas station for us to go--he went with us to the door to talk to the owners in Spanish to see if we could use the bathroom--they let us--it was very dirty--almost like an outhouse and it cost 5 pesos for each of us to use the bathroom--what a wonderful memory!
Once back in Cancun--Milton took us to a Market that was safe for us to shop and bartor and we had fun looking at all the items in the many stores and bargaining our way to good prices for the items we wanted--Brynn got one pretty dress for $13 that we talked down from $19!

That evening when we returned we just relaxed in our room
and around the pools and Layne and I took these pictures on our way
back to our room that night--above is the fountains at our hotel and below is the strip mall
that was across the street from our hotel!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Cancun-Day 1

One can only feel lucky and blessed to have one side of the family take us on a vacation and the other side of our family happy to watch our two children! Terri and Craig took the Parry Family to Cancun this past week--the hotel/resort was a big highlight--tile floors, walk-in shower, and balcony overlooking crystal clear pools, white-sand beaches, and blue-green ocean! We all had a wonderful time, but Layne and I agreed that we prefer Hawaii and we were all glad to get back to everyone speaking English! So here is day 1 of our trip!

At KCI Airport--Craig is already taking his nap!

And this is what we arrived too--just like the pictures Terri
had shown us before of our hotel--it was nice to see that is was for "real!"

Our hotel room with a balcony to that amazing view!

Craig's birthday was the day we got to Cancun, so we
celebrated with a dinner at Planet Hollywood--there was a strip mall
right across from our hotel with shopping and food choices--very handy!

Celebrating life on the beach with Pina Coladas!

Another beach picture.

Terri and Craig checking out the beautiful ocean--the
water color was amazing!

Miss Kristi--all smiles.

The brothers in the hotel pool--with a gorgeous sunset in the background.

Even though we were dead tired from traveling all day,
we decided to ride the bus to Wal-mart to get some groceries for the week--here
we are waiting for the bus. The bus was pretty full, so we stood most of the way there and then after shopping decided to get taxi's on the way home--we had a lot of groceries to haul and they took us start back to the hotel.

Shopping at Wal-mart was interesting--everything was
written in Pesos--so here are chips for $37.oo Pesos--but to us it seemed like $37 dollars.
Luckily about everyone excepted American money too and just converted the bill
over to Pesos--we had brought a calculator along to help us figure out costs and Layne
also put a money converter app on our I-Pod--both very helpful in knowing the cost of items!
After fun times at Wal-mart, we headed to bed to prepare
for an early morning on Sunday at Chichen Itza!