Thursday, February 27, 2014


On Wednesday we woke up in Martinique.  I remember stopping here when I was in 7th grade on a cruise with my dad and older sister, Suzette.  Probably the main reason I remember this stop is because all the beaches are topless.  But really what do you expect from a French island?  We didn't have a lot planned for this island because it was hard to find much information on line, so we planned to get cars and go on a hike that the Forstners had found.  The guys got off the boat at 8 to get cars and the girls met them at 8:30.  However, they quickly learned all the cars were rented and there was a strike going on due to gas so no one was really working.  So we took a ferry to a local beach.  We got to the beach and it wasn't really ideal.  Really, nothing was going to compete with Jolly Harbor from the day before.  Fortunately for us Mike spoke French so he was able to get us around.  There was a group from Tennessee who were tagging along with us because they couldn't communicate with anyone.  It's interesting because most places that speak another language you can still find people who speak English.  That wasn't really the case in Martinique, if you didn't speak French you were out of luck.  We decided we didn't want to hang out at that beach so we walked to the local tourist booth.  They were able to get us a taxi, that would show up in 30 min and then drive us 45 min to a really nice beach.  Or we could just walk 5 min down the road to a beach.  We chose to walk.  It wasn't the nicest beach ever, but it was still nice and relaxing.  We got chairs, umbrellas, pulled out our books and soaked in the rays.  Mike had fun scoping out the restaurants and talking to people in French.  He found a place that he thought would be good for lunch.  He was right.  It was the BEST food I ate the whole week and I think most of the group would agree.  We ate crepes and panini; they were awesome! After lunch we laid out some more, than took the ferry.  

I mean really, what am I complaining about?! This beach was nice.

The streets of Martinique

We did a little shopping and then got back on the boat.  Even though it wasn't the day we were planning, we still had a great day. 
So long Martinique
Group shot

Can't miss the gorgeous sunset.

Love this crazy, goofy, fun husband of mine!

The evening shows didn't look too exciting, so the Johnsons came and hung out on our balcony.  Then we went to the hot tub and got a midnight snack.  Chips, dip, and fruit, exactly what you need before bed.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

St. Johns-My Favorite

Tuesday we were in St. John's.  Mike ordered room service, eating on a balcony in the Caribbean, what could be better?! I went to the gym and then we met up with the group to head to Jolly Harbor.  I have been to a few beaches in my lifetime, I'm not saying I'm a world traveler, but I've seen some beautiful places in Hawaii, Costa Rica, and I've been to several of the Caribbean Islands before.  But I have never been to St. Johns.  And this beach WOWED me! Hands down the prettiest water I have ever seen.  I could have stayed here forever.  I absolutely LOVED it!  We relaxed on the beach for a while.  Mike was pretty sunburnt at this point (he didn't listen to Emily's repeated warnings to reapply sunscreen on Sunday).  Luckily, a local had a great potion of aloe vera and who knows what else.  He gave Mike a rubdown with his magic potion.

Seriously have you ever seen anything prettier?

Love this girl!  She is my partner in crime at cross fit every morning.

My dream is to live in one of those villas.  Paradise everyday.
We went on reef riders which was a lot of fun!

After riding for a while we did a little snorkeling.  They showed us a boat that had sunk.  The snorkeling was good, but the masks sucked, so it didn't make for much fun.  Note to self, I am buying my own mask for the next trip we take.

The boys doing a little cliff jumping.  It looked fun, but I was already dry and didn't feel like getting wet again.  I know I'm lame!
The only downfall of this island was we left our go pro on the reef rider (we think) never to be seen again.  It sucks to lose all the pics and videos we are taken of the trip so far.  Thankfully, our friends were doing a pretty good job documenting as well.
Mike went back to the room because he was tired and his sunburn was bothering him.  Plus I think he wanted to watch some ESPN.  I went to a dance show (it was lame) and then the next entertainment was the marriage game show.  The Forstners were chosen to be on the show.  The show was hilarious! When I got back to the room, Mike was watching the marriage game show on TV, he said he had fallen asleep and just woke up and saw it.  So we enjoyed a few more laughs and then off to bed.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

St. Croix

On Monday we were in St. Croix.  The Forstner's and Francis' were going scuba diving, so we headed off the boat with the Johnson's and Denney's.  We were considering renting bikes to tour the island and also paddle board.  The bikes were all booked, so we headed to a nearby beach and ended up at the Freedom City Surf Shop.  Pi, the owner, took her job very seriously.
She gave us a lengthy demonstration on how to paddle.  She told me that if I big gust of wind came, it would blow me out in the ocean and apparently that was a bad thing.  I've paddle boarded with my sister in Austin and thought it was a lot of fun.  But, I have to admit that Pi had me a little nervous about paddling in open water, as she informed me, that it is much different than in a lake (she was a little overboard).

Listening intently to Pi.

I didn't realize how big the boards were!

Since the first place was right by the cruise ship, we wanted to check out another beach so we could see more of the island.  We took a taxi to Sand Castle Beach.  I was feeling a little sunburnt by this point so I wanted a shady area.  We find a nice restaurant right by the beach.  I ordered a yummy smoothie and enjoyed the gorgeous view.  I even ventured out into the water for a bit, but then retreated to my shade. It was a nice, relaxing afternoon.
Monday night was the first formal dinner, so we got all dressed up.  

The whole gang.

Dinner time

Love these girls, for sure the best looking group on the ship!

After dinner, was the battle of the sexes game.  Some people from our group participated. 

Of course, the girls dominated!!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Caribbean Cruise starting in San Juan

Friday night we put the kids to bed and then headed to the airport.  We drove there with the Francis' and met the Denney's and Johnson's at the airport.  The Forstner's were on a flight with Delta. The flight to North Carolina was rather uneventful and I slept the whole flight.  We ate some breakfast then flew to San Juan.  It was awesome flying from freezing cold to sunny, hot, Puerto Rico.  We headed to the boat, checked in, dropped off the luggage, ate lunch and then headed to tour San Juan.

And why not do 2 minute planks in random places every hour on the hour.  We just followed Brett's lead.  Plus, we were about to indulge in food for a week, so we should probably do something to help our bodies.

Loved the old cobblestone streets

The gravesite by the water was really cool

There was an awesome huge field in front of an old fort.  Perfect for flying kites.

We went back to the boat ate dinner, hot tubbed and called it a night.  I think we were all beat from the red eye flight.

When I woke up Sunday morning I walked out onto our balcony and I couldn't believe the view.  It was gorgeous-sunny skies, blue water, and a cute little town.  We were in St. Thomas.

 I decided to get in a quick workout, grabbed some breakfast and then we headed to church.  I think it's fun to visit churches in different places.  It was fast and testimony meeting; it was amazing to hear the branch member's testimony to feel such a sweet spirit.  The man who conducted the meeting has served in the branch presidency since 2002-that's impressive.

Of course there were lots of visitors at their branch.  There was a guy from Utah who got up and spoke about the humble circumstances of the branch in St. Thomas and the huge stake centers he attends in Utah.  Really so embarrassing?! That's why I prefer to say I'm from Texas, not Utah.

We headed to the beach after, relaxed, read, ate, swam, snorkeled.  It was a perfect start to our vacation.
First Beach Day
This was my favorite day for snorkeling.
My hot hubbie checking out the sea creatures.

Nothing like a little coconut water.

Best smoothie ever! Starting the trip off right.
After the beach we went for a drive to a lookout point.  Not sure if this was what we were looking for, but it was pretty.

Emily and Tony came to hang out in our room before dinner.  We got this gorgeous picture from our balcony.  
When we booked our cruise, I wanted to just get a regular room (because I don't like to spend money), but Mike thought it would be fun to have a balcony.  I am so glad we got a balcony.  It was so nice to have breakfast out there, read, relax, just hang out there.  

The girls at dinner. Lots of fun conversations happened around this table.