goodbye cancun!

Where did this week go?  Well, I guess I know where it went.  We spent a lot of time reading and soaking up the rays.

We enjoyed some good food.

And some great desserts.

Does anyone know how to make mint mousse?  I need to learn, STAT.

We even made some animal friends.

Some real and some of the folded variety…

We also met some warriors.

One of them was especially fierce.

We had a few romantic dinners.  It’s our honeymoon after all.

As if that weren’t enough, I got a hole-in-one at mini golf!

But mostly we just spent time together, goofing around and having fun.

Enjoying being husband and wife.

Which made for a very happy week, indeed.

Goodbye, Cancun!  Thanks for a great honeymoon!

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ch – making ceviche

Even though we’re at an all-inclusive and have been stuffing our faces with fresh fruit, pad thai, ice cream and omelets every day, we managed to get some cooking in as well.  We spent Thursday afternoon at (yet another) sister resort, Beach Palace and it turns out this is the party Palace.  While we were sitting by the pool the action didn’t stop.  First there was a water aerobics class follwed by a performance by dancers from a local night club/theater then an “triathlon” basically designed for the spring break crowd but carried out by middle-aged hotel guests.  Finally, in the afternoon, there was an activity both Todd and I were excited to participate in (although I did try out some of the water aerobics moves) – a cooking demonstration!

The entertainment staff lined us up by the pool, gave us all aprons and set out all of the ingredients to make ceviche.

Lime, avocado, tomato, onion, cilantro, grouper and salt.  Simple enough.  The chef then walked us through the steps.

Mix fish, tomato, cilantro and onion together, got it.  Squeeze one lime wedge over the mixture, taste and add juice of lime if desired, no need to taste, in goes the second lime.  Add salt, done.  Scoop out avocado, check.  Mix together lightly and voila – ceviche!

I must say, it was pretty good.  And I don’t even prefer fish but the grouper was really mild and mixed with the fresh veggies and tortilla chips, it was a great snack.

Did I mention how awesome our aprons were?

It was just another fun, relaxing day in Cancun.

Have you every made ceviche at home?

Does eating uncooked fish bother you?

ch – ruins and fish phobia

On Wednesday, Todd and I rented a Smart Car and hit the road for the day.  The Smart Car was pretty awesome and it was even a convertible which we were pretty excited about.

Thankfully Cancun and Riviera Maya are easy to navigate because they’re basically long strips with one long highway connecting them.  After driving due south for an hour and a half we arrived at Tulum, a pre-Columbian Maya city on the Caribbean Sea that was probably established around 1200 AD.

A lot of the ruins are quite intact and the location on the Caribbean Sea makes for gorgeous views.

Todd and I opted out of a guided tour and wandered around the ruins for awhile.

It was a really hot day (in Mexico, you don’t say!) so we didn’t stay incredibly long.  Thankfully Tulum isn’t huge so we felt like we had a complete experience.  It was nice to get out of the resort, see more of Mexico and stretch our legs a bit.

We had lunch at another sister resort, Xpu Ha Palace.  I order the Tacos al Pastor – pork tacos with grilled pineapple that were so delicious!  I will definitely be attempting to recreate these bad boys when I get home.

When we were full we left to find Yal Ku Lagoon in the nearby town of Akumal.  The lagoon was recommended to me as the best place to snorkel around.  It’s a lagoon where the fresh water meets the ocean so lots of fish and turtles tend to congregate there.

Todd loves to snorkel so we were excited.  We’ve actually been snorkeling together before, in Costa Rica and had a great time.  Todd was much more into it than I was but I enjoyed it and when I felt I had seen enough I hopped back on the boat to read and sunbathe.

What I wasn’t expecting this time was for fish to flock towards the stairs as you enter the lagoon.  Some might think this was really cool, I in fact did until the fish wouldn’t move, but I have a fish phobia and did not appreciate those little buggers swimming towards me as I attempted to get into the water.

In my head I know that fish aren’t interested in me but the thought of them swimming up next to me just freaks me out.  Plus I saw them eat a baby crab that got stuck to my fin – it was not very reassuring.

Todd eagerly jumped into the lagoon and snorkeled ahead, attempting every few minutes to lure me into the water and snorkel with him.  The problem was that he is fish bait.  Every time he came near, he brought two dozen fish along with him.

Finally, after about 20 minutes of pouting sunbathing, the fish cleared and I got into the water and snorkeled a bit.  Mostly, I swam around but I was happy with that and Todd was happy that I was in the water.

We brought our Flip video camera and our underwater case so Todd edited together a little video for you all to see.  Enjoy!

When we got back to our hotel that evening we were greeted with a “Just Married” dessert and a bottle of Mexican champagne.

We had a really fun day exploring Riviera Maya and our honeymoon surprise was the perfect way to end the day, a very nice touch, indeed.

As if this post wasn’t long enough, I wanted to let you know that I’ve added a new page to the blog.  It’s a book list and I’d love to hear your recommendations!

Do you have any animal phobias?


cancun honeymoon (day two)

You’re probably getting tired of my honeymoon gloating by now so I will be brief.

We spent yesterday at a sister resort, Cancun Palace.   As guests of the Sun Palace we have access to all of the Palace Resorts which is a fun perk.  Needless to say, the resort was gorgeous as well.

We really enjoyed the swim up bar and what may have been the world’s best mojitos.  I think that mojitos will be my cocktail of choice this summer.

I was also a big fan of the ice cream bar.  They had such interesting toppings available.  I went for green sprinkles, froot loops and a cookie on top, too make sure it was sweet enough.

Today we’re going to rent a car and visit Tulum, an archaeological site and go snorkeling.  It should be a fun day and I’m excited to see more of the area.

What’s your favorite cocktail?


cancun honeymoon (night one)

After a day of lounging in the sun, Todd and I had dinner at the resort‘s Asian restaurant.  Todd had sushi and I had pad thai, always a favorite, really the whole dinner was quite good.  The view overlooking the ocean wasn’t half bad either.

When we were done eating, we headed to the lobby to pick up some photos we had taken earlier in the day with a pair of macaws.  Today they had an iguana and I politely declined.  The birds were pretty cool though.  We have another picture with one of them on Todd’s head.  Good stuff.

The resort features one event or show every night and we rounded out our evening with a solid karaoke night.  I had so much fun singing along but still couldn’t muster the courage to actually karaoke.  My one attempt at “Whatta Man” has irreversibly squelched any desire I had to sing in front of a crowd of any size.  Leading the show was a Mexican Elvis – definitely a highlight.

In other, less noteworthy news, I really liked my outfit last night so I had Todd take a picture.  I’m really grooving on the glamour shots during this vacation!

Well, I have to get back to relaxing in paraiso.  Until later!

Do you karaoke?

What’s your favorite karaoke tune either to perform or to hear performed?

cancun honeymoon (day one)

This morning both Todd and I woke up early.  Since we had the time we started the day with a short workout at the hotel gym.  The gym has a pretty nice view of an inlet so between that and the book I brought along, my time on the exercise bike went by quickly.

We got ready for the day, meaning I finally took down my wedding hair and removed my fake eyelashes.  Being a glamour puss was fun while it lasted but it was time to morph into a beach bum.

After breakfast on our balcony we went down to stake a claim on two poolside beach chairs.  Last night the beach looked nice but today, in the light of day, it was just breathtaking.

The water is like an ombre printed scarf.  It starts navy in the distances that gradually becomes cerulean and then a turquoise that fades into the most beautiful, clear blue that I’ve ever seen.  I said to Todd that I thought the pictures on the resorts had been photoshopped but the water is actually that beautiful and the sand is actually that white.  It’s paradise, certainly.

We spent our morning enjoying the view, basking in the sun and taking cheesy pictures – we even had one with a pair of macaws, I can’t wait to see it.

This mildly unflattering picture was one of my glamour shots taken by Todd while I was modeling my brand new sun hat which was purchased especially for the honeymoon.  While the picture isn’t the best, my sun hat rocks.

In between soaking up sun rays and modeling sessions, we went for a swim and enjoy the wonderful service that comes with an all-inclusive package.  They just keep bringing margaritas, daiquiris, quesadillas, ice cream…whatever your little heart desires.  And guacamole.  The guacamole here is quite good.

All of the sun combined with the strawberry daiquiri I had knocked me right out and I took a little nap in the sun.  Now, we’re back in our room, taking a little break to plan out our week.

Rest assured, it will include a lot more of this:

Believe it our not, that photo wasn’t tweaked a bit.  Just pure Caribbean bliss.  I could definitely get used to this!

What is the most beautiful place you’ve ever visited?

hola desde cancun!

So…we’re married!

After an amazing wedding day (more to come on that later, I promise) Todd and I woke up this morning as husband and wife.  What an amazing feeling.

We met up with family for a quick Mother’s Day brunch at the J.W. Marriott’s (the hotel we stayed at last night) restaurant, six.one.six which was delicious as always.

After that we went straight to the airport and after a delay, headed towards Cancun via Atlanta to start our honeymoon.  The first leg of our trip from Grand Rapids to Atlanta was first class.  It was my first time being in first class and let me tell you, I could get used to that.

First we got to board right away then they brought us wine before take off then wine again after departure.  THEN they brought us snacks.  Free snacks.  Not just peanuts and a few pretzels, I got a Twix bar.  Todd got red wine and Sun Chips.  It was awesome.

My white wine and Twix was the perfect snack to enjoy while catching up on all of the details of the royal wedding.

We had a short layover in Atlanta and enjoyed a treat at Ben and Jerry’s – last time I was at ATL it was Lent and I had to resist the Ben and Jerry’s, I was so glad to indulge this time!

The flights to Cancun wasn’t long and I slept most of the way.  Thankfully, I woke up in time to take in the first view of the coast of Mexico.

We arrived to our hotel only about 45 minutes after landing and it’s amazing.  We were greeted with cocktails and couldn’t be happier with our chice.  The resort is called the Sun Palace.  Our room is gorgeous and we can see the ocean from our balcony.

We quickly went to find a place for dinner and choose one of the resorts four restaurants.  It was called Steak but I ended up with a vegetarian selection.

After dinner we took a walk on the beach.  A lovely way to start a honeymoon.  I can’t wait to see what this place is like during the day!

Hello from Cancun!  This week is going to be amazing!

Where did you go or where would you like to go on your honeymoon?