Monday, December 31, 2012

2012

what a year... 

 

 bought a house


Celebrated my last days as a single gal with my favorite ladies


married the man of my dreams



relaxed and honeymooned in Belize 



and of course found out we were expecting. 

 
cheers to 2012 and an even better 2013


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

First comes love, then comes marriage....

This years Christmas seems to be the best yet. So much to be thankful for.

 Most importantly, little Baby B. Expected arrival June 26, 2013.

excuse blogger.... they dont seem to want to make it right side up.

Our teeny tiny Christmas miracle sure to make things merry and bright.

Monday, December 17, 2012

As I wrapped Christmas presents on Saturday, I could not wrap my mind around the previous days events. 27 families will no longer be the same. 20 mothers and fathers losing their tiniest of loves. 6 families suffering through their loved ones heroic acts and a father who is left wondering why. Prayers to the families, the town and the children whose innocence is forever gone.


Friday, December 14, 2012

Confessional Friday



 Weekly Confessions... here you go! 


I confess that Kristina Braverman had me absolutely terrified and sent me straight into ugly cry mode. That video. God help us all.


Also, speaking of TV. I confess that I can not wait for Downton Abbey to start again. If you don't watch this show yet.... hurry up, you have 3 weeks to watch the first 2 seasons. 


I confess that I am dying to get all of my Christmas presents wrapped and under the tree. Not because Christmas is only 11 days away (what?!?!) but because the 101 lb. mangy monster is in St. Louis and I don't trust the presents to be under the tree while he is here. That's like putting a steak in front of a lion and asking him to not eat it. But for the next 7 days, my presents can sit under there safe from harm slobber.


I confess that there is so much change happening around here. Everyday seems to bring something new. An exciting 2013 is sure to be had!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Gobble Gobble!

Right out of the gates, we decided to host our first holiday. I'd have to say it went pretty good. A few rookie mistakes, but no one walked away with salmonella so I can't really complain. 

The food all came out of the oven, looked delightful, smelled better, piping hot (except the mashed potatoes, we'll get to that later) annnnnddd as everyone sat down at the table, my husband decided that we should just serve salad first. What?!? If it wasn't so quiet at that given moment in time I wouldn't have stopped kicking his shins under the table! 

So, we ate our salads while everything got cold. In comes the potatoes. While everyone is piling their plates, my dad ever so nervously mentions that the mashed potatoes are ice cold. We cook the potatoes before hand, add all of the fixings and then put them in the oven right before dinner. Apparently, not long enough and lets be honest the potatoes are the real reason for the season. A few zaps in the microwave and they were back to tip top shape and although the food may have been a bit chilly, it was still a wonderful holiday. A lot to be thankful for this year!


the table 



the bird


 officially the man of the house



Friday, November 16, 2012

You Better Belize It: Part 3

Later in the week we took off for our other excursion to the Maya Ruins. This was one of my favorite days. We really saw all that Belize has to offer even tarantulas (don't worry though, I've spared you the pictures, partly because I can hardly look at them myself. Needless to say, I was off camera duty and high tailing my butt away from that situation)

 
This was one of the funniest moments I think of the entire trip. We were told that a storm was coming in and as we all made our way to the boat, we noticed the couple from Seattle were sans rain jacket. (the couple in the white shirt) The captain strongly urged them to get their rain gear, to which they just responded with "its okay, we are from Seattle". When I tell you it stormed, I mean the heavens opened up. We must have gotten 12 inches of rain during the 30 minute boat ride into town. 2 minutes in, they might as well of jumped into the ocean and swam there. And to add insult to injury, they were sitting in probably the wettest area of the boat. He was a good sport though, never complained while he waited for his clothes to dry the rest of the day.








 

we stopped for lunch at a local restaurant




 and while everyone braved the guinea pig (literally) I stuck to trusty ole fried chicken.


Afterwards we headed to the Xunantunich Ruins via the hand cranked ferry.... 


which is exactly what it says it is. You get across with nothing but a little hard work.






Our instructor, Bernard is Mayan, so it was really neat hearing all of this information from him. He knew so much of their traditions and beliefs. He did ease all of our minds and let us know that the world is not going to end this year. Phew, right?  I know we were all on the each of our seats for that one!


This leaf is a mimosa plant, the leaves curl up when it is touched and then after a few minutes re-opens. 



An all spice tree. Smelled delicious.... 


and that is when a lot of people learned that all spice is not just all spices thrown together.  


This is what the locals call the "tourist  tree". It is always red and its bark is always peeling. Bernard said you can find a lot of them at the airport after a week in Belize.


An avocado that fell from one of the trees. 

Here is neighboring Guatemala.  That white road you see is the border.

 and that man you see is border control. fully equipped with a machine gun and friends. 



we climbed to the very top of the structure.



and barely left the "safe zone"


I somehow managed to get to the edge to take this picture. 1 step behind us is a 100 foot drop. I assure my palms are sweating. 



As we left we took a moment to gather around one of the many termite nests. Termites help keep the rainforest clean and build these giant nests out of their feces in order to shelter themselves from the sun... like vampires, they will melt. A few brave ones even ate one- they taste like carrots. Literally, exactly like them 

 
We headed back to the island for some more time in the sun, 


good food,



 and amazing nights.


It was an amazing week with amazing memories and a second trip is on my bucket list.



Tuesday, November 6, 2012

You Better Belize It: Part 2

Our first full day there was an excursion day. We headed to the far west part of the country for Zip lining and Cave Tubing.

First we ate breakfast at the resort over the crystal clear water. The first part of the trip, they were remodeling the dining room so we ate at the owners house on his porch. I wish they never finished the remodel... it was gorgeous!

 

disclaimer: I promised I got actually dressed while there. For our excursions, we were told to dress like this because of the bugs and after the tarantulas we saw, I wish I would have brought a parka.


This is how they package their water there. Much more "green" but a lot less sanitary. You had to suck the water out of the plastic. 


We grabbed our refreshments and headed into the vans for the real adventure of the trip. The driving in Belize is nuts.There are no road signs, lanes or speed limits for that matter. A trip that would haven taken us a good 3 and a half hours in the states, we completed in about 2 hours. Keep in mind too, we are in the rainforest. i.e mountain like turns. At one point I saw the only speed limit sign within in the whole country. It said "Dangerous Curves ahead" accompanied with a 30 mph speed limit sign (even though they go by Kilometers there) and I swear the driver SPED UP. we took that SOB at 120 Kilometers, which is SEVENTY FIVE MILES PER HOUR! Best part is, I had the only seat in the house that really could see what was ahead and had the pleasure of looking at the speedometer. All the while we were dodging bikers, cows and at some points school buses letting off children. It was on day 1 that I learned Belize is a reckless abandon.

The country is absolutely breathtaking. Everything is so green and vibrant.  It was really amazing to drive through and see all that it has to offer. Their main crop there is citrus and there were various citrus trees everywhere you turn.


We arrived at the zip line/cave tubing sight safe and sound and it was everything I pictured the rainforest to be. Everything down to the sounds.



 The cave tubing was very cool. We entered the caves with nothing but the lamp on our helmet. It was pitch black in there and full of sparking rock. Afterwards, we finished tubing down the river in the rainforest. This would mark the first spot Dan lost his ring. In the river. Luckily the water there is no Mississppi River and he saw it right away.

 the next two days we spent at the resort, relaxing by our cabana


soaking up the rays 


and drinking plenty of these 


these

and a lot of these. The signature "mosquito bite" and there was more than one occasion we caught West Nile from these bad boys. It is a bit of grenadine on the bottom, Malibu in the center and then pineapple juice mixed with Captain Morgan on top. Delicious and deadly.


Ervin, Sergio and Leo are the bartenders there and they become family by the time you leave. All of the workers do really. When you go to leave, you feel like you've known them your whole life. 


Everyone leaves a t-shirt and they remain hanging in the bar until they need more room. There were quite a few that we could relate to!