Sunday, October 14, 2012

Mexico, baby!!

The hubby and I found a great deal online for an all-inclusive resort in Mexico. We decided this would be a perfect time to go. We didn't have a little baby or small kids that we'd have to bring with us, we had babysitters at our house (our awesome in-laws) that could watch the kids, and we had a week left of vacation time to use was perfect timing of us really.
We've never been to an all-inclusive resort before, so I was super excited.
What made it even more awesome is that several of our close friends decided to come also, 12 of us in total booked it.

Here's our week in detail:

Day 1-

Check the weather, it's supposed to rain all week...NOOO!! We drive to the airport in plenty of time to check-in, eat and visit with all our friends. Board the plane....looooong....plane ride, ha ha, I'm a wimp, I know.
Arrive to pouring rain!! Like, really pouring. Manage to find our way to our travel rep, and board a bus to the resort. It's raining so much that the bus is leaking all over our heads.
Unpack, room is awesome!! Resort is awesome!! Eat Mexican food with really yummy green soup. Go for a late evening swim in the ridiculously warm ocean. First day= fabulous.

Day 2-
Wake up and attempt to go for breakfast, but are stopped by the timeshare people. Decide to go on timeshare tour, that includes breakfast. Takes WAY longer than they say, like usual...sales rep is usual...we don't buy usual. Get $56 off of a tour we really wanted to go on. Book the rest of our tours for the week.
Spend the afternoon swimming, eating and hanging out. In LOVE with the awesome warm water. Figure out the address to the church in the morning.

Day 3- 
Somehow subconsciously convince another couple to come with us to church. Get a taxi driver named Nacho who knows exactly where the church is. Drive the crazy roads through major puddles (more like rivers) and crazy potholes...somehow make it to church in one piece.
Don't understand anything being said at church, that has already started. Realize that we got the wrong time, when what we think is the opening prayer, is in fact, the closing one. Stay for Sunday school, understand a bit, enough to know what the topic is at least. Meet lots of cool people. Takes pictures with the giant Book of Mormon and admire the sweet outdoor basketball court.
Back at the resort, we have a sand sculpting contest. We lose...but our sculpture is still super awesome, a sea turtle. My fave was the loveseat, but only because it made for such awesome photos!
Swim some more, really learn to boogie board. Eat more food (the hubby thought all the food was good, I disliked almost everything I ate).
We walk around late at night randomly looking for somewhere to dance, but never find anything.

Day 4-
Go on a "canopy tour", which is a whole bunch of zip-lines(15 in total). The bus ride there is long, but really neat...we drive through some cool mountains. Start zip-lining, and scream at the first 3 we go on. After #4 I'm practically enjoying myself, and by #8 or so I'm going upside down and spinning. Awesome views!! I almost die with all the walking and the crazy heat/humidity, but somehow I survive.
We finish the tour and buy the video. We feed monkeys, super cool! We eat. We swim down some rock water-slides into the crazy river. The river is super strong, and I almost get swept away.
We head back home and stop at a big flea market on the way. It's much hotter downtown than it was in the jungle. We shop for a while and see some cool street preforming-type people. We eat yummy ice cream. Someone notices were Mormon, weird? This happens almost every day we're in Mexico.
We head home.
Karaoke night, I think? I'm getting my days confused.

Day 5- 
We hung out at the resort tanning, eating and swimming. We didn't too much during the day today. Our big tour today is Rhythms of the night. Its fantastic!! Like something off of a awesome. The food was pretty good too, but still not a huge fan of anything we are eating. After the show, we eat an awesome candle-lit dinner and are serenaded by some amazing singer/drummer/guitarists. After dinner we peruse the torch-lit island and find some hammocks, a beautiful beach and really pretty views.
We walk home from the tour, once back in PV, and are almost eaten by crocodiles, spiders, rabid dogs...and zombies? Who knows, it was a crazy night.

Day 6-
We wake up bright and early to take a little water-taxi to Vallarta Adventures. Due to a pool closure, we all got $50 vouchers towards a tour, and so we all decided to go on the Marietas Islands tour. It was super beuatiful! We are all a little disappointed because the tide was too high for us to go to Hidden Island, like we had hoped for. The snorkeling was okay, but not nearly as great as some other places we have been to.
The worst part about today is getting sick!! A combination of sea-sickness and heat-stroke leads to me getting seriously sick for 2 fun! But the beach that we went to was beautiful  and we got some great shots. 
I'm super bummed to miss all the dancing that everyone else is doing downstairs...apparently even my hubby brakes it down on the dance floor! Too bad I'm sick in my room attempting to watch TV...sad night.

Day 7-
I was sick all day!! I couldn't hardly leave the hotel room, and when I do, I can't eat. I just lay in the room or in the shade the whole day. Luckily, I'm able to start feeling better by the evening and get to join this SUPER fun night called "Miss Occidental". They pick 4 ladies to compete, and through a series of really silly, slightly embarrassing and ridiculous tasks...I eventually win the title of Miss Occidental...and a free!

Day 8-I am pretty ready to see my kids by today!! And way more than ready to eat some good old Canadian food. We spend the day hanging out by the pool and beach, taking pictures and having fun. The funnest part of today is the pool volleyball game we got going...SO much fun, which is surprising because I suck SO bad....seriously, ask my friends:)
We take some more cool pics, and are off on our way home! The long flight is made longer by the fact that my flying-home novel isn't nearly as good as my flying-there novel. Also, the TV's are down completely....not cool. 
We make a pit-stop at Peter's and run into my weird?! They are going through the drive-thru as we are at the drive-in....such a nice surprise!

After a long drive home, in which I manage to stay awake...we are finally home to our kiddos! It was all I could do not to wake them up....I missed them SO much!!

And that's our week in a nutshell! SO super fantastic! We both love the sun and the beach. In fact, the hubby stated tonight that we should save up money to move to Hawaii, sell mini-donuts at the swap meet and buy a laundro-mat and start a jet-lev that's the life! :)

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Thoughts on Conference

If you don't know what conference is, go here:, where you can listen, read and watch the General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. We watched it live this weekend, but you can watch it after also. 
I loved that we got to stay home all weekend listening, and hanging out with the boys, who've we've really missed being gone this last week. 
I also love that it coincides with Thanksgiving weekend, and is reminds us how much we truly have to be thankful for. I mean, what's more awesome than the Gospel. 
Every 6 months we get this opportunity to listen to our modern-day Prophet, Thomas S. Monson, and his apostles. It is always a great weekend:)
We made candy buckets, so the kids would pay always works like a charm. They listen for the corresponding word, and get a candy each time they hear it. They sat through almost 3 whole sessions, that's 6 hours!! I was pretty impressed. 

Here's some pictures of the weekend:

Some things I loved this weekend:
-Be a true Disciple of Christ. It always amazes me that conference talks flow so smoothly into each other...considering that every speaker chooses their own talk, not knowing what anyone else is speaking on. The underlying theme of this one seemed to be this, Be a Disciple. I loved the story of Peter that was told and re-told, "Feed my sheep. Feed my lambs." This is something that we can definitely work on as a family, and I've thought about a lot lately. Maybe we'll make it our family goal.
-Share the Gospel with all. I loved the changes they made to missionary ages, this will make a huge difference to missionary work, and is SO exciting! As my hubby is currently working with all the Ward missionaries, and Elders in our ward, missionary work has been on our minds a lot lately and we've been really striving for more missionary experiences in our lives. 
-Family History work is not just a suggestion, but a commandment and is an essential part of temple work. I've never heard it been talked about like that. I've never felt like I was missing out on a commandment. As was explained, family history work and Temple work go hand-in-hand, and we need to be doing both. Merely attending the temple, though essential, is simply not enough.
Wowza, I need to start working on that one!
-Become truly converted to the Lord through studying the scriptures and gospel truths, and don't seek truth through others accounts of what truth is. I really felt that this was an underlying theme also. Many people spoke about finding truth through becoming clean, seeking real truth  and strengthening your testimony. In the wake of so many people falling away from the church, this was really needed, and I hope that many people heed the call to come back. 
-Truly teach the Gospel in the home through uplifting media and gospel centered conversations. Many people spoke about how simply teaching the gospel on Sunday is not enough. This also goes along with uplifting media in the home, and not letting bad influences into our home in any way. This really hit home as well, as I know I can do a better job at this, and need to be careful about what kind of media I'm watching or being a part of, not just the kids, as it all affects the Spirit of our home.
-Avoid negative entertainment, media and websites. 
-Find joy in the journey, don't wait until the end of something good to start enjoying it. I loved this!! I find myself over-busy way too often...and just hoping for the week, month or even year to just be over! We wouldn't go to a carnival, and not enjoy any part of the night, pining for the end of it...we'd enjoy it! I need to enjoy things more, especially when it comes to my own children and family.
-Serve others. Don't be too busy to miss the promptings of the Spirit to serve. I always enjoy Pres. Monson's talks. One of the things I enjoy most though is hearing about the numerous occasions that he felt a prompting to serve someone, and heeded it...almost on a daily basis. He just drops whatever he's doing and obeys the prompting to serve, no matter how much it will disturb his own day. I need to be much more self-less, and not worry so much about my own to-do list, but worry about what I can do that day to serve others. 
-You can't rely on others testimonies, you have to consistently work on strengthening our own. I loved when Pres. Bednar spoke of the parable of the Ten Virgins. Maybe the 5 wise virgins couldn't give their oil to the others because it's not something that can simply be given, it's something that each person gains on their own, line upon line, precept upon precept. 

LOVED it all:) The weekend, my family, the beautiful and uplifting words...what a great way to celebrate Thanksgiving.