Friday, June 30, 2017

2017 Exotic Eastern Caribbean Carnival Cruise- Days, 4-6

I'm back to recap the rest of our Carnival cruise. 

On Sunday we woke up and were at Nassau. 
Alex and I had been to Nassau before and weren't impressed, so we booked an excursion. 
His parents wanted to do a bar-hopping tour, so we followed suit. 
I'm not much of a drinker, but I thought we'd go along with it. 

This was our first stop on the bar-hopping tour.
Viola's is a smaller resort that's not beach front. 
It was so pretty!

And I guess that's all of the pictures I took of the tour. 
We went to Margaritaville, Fish Fry ( a local bar) and Senor Frogs. 
What I liked more than anything was seeing different parts of Nassau.

We were back on the ship and ready to get cleaned up for the evening. 
It was fun seeing the towel animals each afternoon!

Alex and I loved the entertainment at night. 
We would head to the main dining area around 6:30, eat at 7, and then enjoy entertainment until 12 or 1.
This day was also our 1 year anniversary!

 So we left Nassau and headed to Half Moon Cay (Carnival's private island).
I always love the private islands. 
There's something about the white sandy beaches and clear water. 

We started off with a bike tour of the island. 
Alex wasn't thrilled that we had to wear helmets, but it was a neat little ride.

One stop was to see the stingray's

And we spent the rest of the day at the beach. 
The water was pretty chilly, and we couldn't find a place that didn't have lifeguards on duty. 
At Coco Cay we were able to be on the opposite side of the island as the public beach, and we could go out as far as we wanted and saw a ton of wildlife. 
I wish we had that same opportunity here.

That afternoon we were the last tender boat to leave and again got ready for a fun evening. 
The next morning we were in Grand Turk.

It was a little cloudy.

As you're entering the island, we grabbed chairs to the right. 
We had a clamshell that was free. 
The ones to the left cost $.
This side of the entrance is more rocky, but I didn't mind since I just planned to lay out. 
The left side seemed so busy, which I'm not a fan of. 

We laid out for a while. 
It rained a little, but I hid in the clamshell, and then we went to get some lunch.

This place was nearly right behind where we were laying out. 
It seemed more of a local place than something like Margaritaville.
We ate beside the Grand Turk police and one of the singers from our ship. 
We loved the view!

They even support Pitt with the best ketchup ever!
 We spent the rest of the day at the pool at Margaritaville. 
It's complimentary. 
We wanted to do a tour of Grand Turk, but we missed getting tickets. 

Back to the ship for another fun night!

Waiting for dinner and listening to some live music!

The final day at sea can be summed up with this picture...

We laid in the adults only area, and I did a lot of reading. 
Every now and then I would get in the hot cool tub and then get back out. 
I met another teacher, and we had some teacher talk, but otherwise it was low key. 

So there you have it. 
Another cruise in the books. 
We had a blast and loved loved loved the entertainment on board. 
Our cruise director Kabir was awesome, but there are some things we didn't love. 
Next week I will be back with a recap of what we liked and didn't like and what I would do differently if we did it again. 
Speaking of which, I'm looking at a cruise through Princess for next summer. 
Have you ever cruised Princess?
I'm curious to get other people's opinions before we make the booking.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Sweet Summertime Recap: Week 5

I'm sorry for the post postponement.
I said I would do the recap of the rest of our cruise yesterday, but I forgot about What's Up Wednesday, and then today I forgot about my Sweet Summertime recap. 
The final cruise recap will be tomorrow!
It's done and ready to go. 
So, no Friday Favorites this week. 
I will be back with lots of Friday Favorites next week, and also next week will be my Carnival/Royal Caribbean Showdown. 
I'm going to share what I loved and didn't love about each cruise line and deem a final winner!!
So on with the regular program for summer Thursday's!

Another week of summer has said good-bye. 
It's Week 5, and on one hand I can definitely believe it, and on another I can't!
It seems like so long since I've seen my co-workers and actually taught, but at the same time it seems like it was just Memorial Day. 
6 more weeks of summer left! 
I like it when the amount remaining weeks is higher than the already enjoyed weeks!

Thursday, June 22

Like normal on this day I enjoyed some pool time. 
Some reading of the new Magnolia Journal. 
I just love home real Chip and Jo are!
And I love love love how much they value family and a simple life.

In the evening Alex hung my new hanger for one of my hanging baskets. 
It was a simple day.

Friday, June 23

On Friday I was up early and ready to go. 
I drove about 2 hours to the Half Price Books Warehouse sale. 
I got there about a half hour early and was still about the 100th person. 

I waited in line, and then the madness began. 
There are tables and tables of books. 
They are three rows deep on each table with the spines sticking up. 

I went straight to the Young Adult section. 
The first three minutes were good meaning I could move myself and my cart and not hit anybody. 
After that it was chaos. 
There are tons of teachers grabbing books since everything is $2 or less. 
I spent an hour in there, which was good enough for me. 
One of my co-workers was there, and he stayed for 3 hours! Wowzer!

I was still able to get a decent amount. 
This is my basement floor as I do a little DIY lamination on the covers of the paperback books. 
We tape them with shipping tape, so that the covers don't tear off. 
The hardbacks will have to wait until I get back to school. 
I didn't bring my book cover roll home with me. 

I left and hit up the regular Half Price Books store. 
By this time it was raining cats and dogs. 
I knew it was supposed to rain, but oh my. 
I stopped by Easton to return at pair of flip flops at Macy's and the lady asked if I wore them in with how wet they were. 
Um, no! That's how hard it's raining outside. The water soaked the bag they were in!!

It was nonstop raining. 
I had to hit Target and head for home because I literally was soaked!

Saturday, June 24

Another work day for Alex. 
I enjoyed the pool, and he brought me a frappe!
We hit up Menard's that afternoon before having pizza at my Mema's and ending the night with a fire at a friend's.

Sunday, June 25

On this day I did the children's message at church. 
It's fun and nerve wracking to do this. 
I'm not nervous on a daily basis at school, but it's a different environment and different people watching. 

In the afternoon, after leaving the pool because it was too windy and cool, I added another little flowerbed to the side of our house. 
We tried growing grass, but it's a bit too shady, so I resorted to another flowerbed. 
You can never have too many flowers!!

Monday, June 26

It is chilly here!
The temperature was in the 60's/70's.
Way too cold for the pool!
I cleaned the whole house, did laundry, read and watered flowers.

Tuesday, June 27

Finished my summer class!
I forced myself to sit down and finish my paper for Gifted Students in the Regular Classroom. 
Another book that I no longer need to add to my pool bag.

Wednesday, June 28

What started as a quick trip to one grocery store ended in lots of errands and my car being full of plants.

We've been looking for hydrangeas and all of them we've seen haven't looked healthy. 
Until I went by myself and wasn't driving a truck. 
That's how it works, right? 
I fit everything into my car and din't have anymore room to spare. 

I rushed home to get the steaks, burgers and brats in the freezer. 
Then I washed all of the fruit, so they are ready to enjoy. 
It's amazing how much more we eat of items that are cut and washed. 
So, now after going to the grocery store I wash the fruits and veggies and cut anything up that needs cut.

So there's Week 5. 
It was a cool, calm week. 
Now let the heat turn up on Week 6. 

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

What's Up Wednesday: So long June...

So long there June!
I cannot believe that June is almost over.
They always say when the 4th of July rolls around that it's nearly time to go back to school.
While I love school, and there have been times when I've gotten bored, it really hasn't been hot and humid here in Ohio, so I'd like some of that before we head back to school!

At the end of each month MelShay and Sheaffer share 
What's Up Wednesday!!!
We answer a series of questions and one extra one special to that month.
This month we're answering...

What's your favorite 4th of July tradition?

What we're eating this week:

This might not be our dinner for this week, but this is what summer food looks like.

I tried these spinach and herb tortillas, but I couldn't do it!
One bite and these were not for me. 

Some summertime ice cream!


And more salads paired with some pizza!

Indoor smores!

My favorite chicken on the grill

The perfect back porch meal

 Homemade quesadillas!

What I'm reminiscing about:

I've been reminiscing about summers past.

I have SO much time to think in the summer, and I've been thinking about everything that I did in summers past.

I remember the long lazy summer days.
The days don't seem that long anymore, and they haven't gotten that hot.

It's crazy how fast life flies by!

What I'm loving:

The beauty of nature!!
I love listening/watching the birds, butterflies, hummingbirds and seeing all of the flowers bloom!

What we've been up to:

We've been cruising!
I shared Days 1, 2, 3 of our Carnival cruise on Monday
I was going to share the rest of it today, but it's been postponed to tomorrow!

We enjoyed these gorgeous waters

Had so much fun onboard

And enjoyed a tour of one island on bikes (helmets included!)

Come back tomorrow to read about the rest of our trip!

What I'm dreading:

At this moment I'm enjoying life one hour at a time!

What I'm working on:

I'm wrapping up one of my summer classes.
I'm hoping by the time you are reading this that I'm done with my final paper!! Woohoo!
I've enjoyed reading about ways to help gifted learners, but I'm ready for a little break!

I'm continuing to work on my little side job.
I don't want to share all of the details quite yet, but it keeps me occupied through these summer days!

What I'm excited about:

Alex and I want to take another summer getaway at the end of August.
We are thinking about Mexico or the Dominican Republic.
I need ideas!

We went to Mexico last summer and loved it!!

Where should we go this summer?
Please please please share any resorts that you've been to that you think we would love OR share what you think we might love!

What I'm watching/reading:

the summer allows me to get my read on!!
These books are currently waiting for me!

Magazine reading on the cruise!

I'm loving the Magnolia Journal!!

Enjoying the pool and learning about Gifted Learners

The Little Beach Street Bakery!

I've been doing a lot of reading lately.
I enjoying reading in the early morning and staying up late to finish a chapter.
In early July I will recap all that I enjoyed in June!

What I'm listening to:

I'm listening to kids playing outdoors, the bird chirping, lawn mowers mowing and some background noise of the Today show!

What I'm wearing:

This time of year I'm wearing running clothes in the morning and my swimsuit by noon. 
There's nothing fancy to show you there. 

What I'm doing this weekend:

I'm really not sure what we will be up to this weekend.
I was going to visit relatives, but I'm not sure that will happen.
If not, our town has a bit shebang for the 4th of July.

As I was running yesterday morning there were already tarps nailed down on the hillside at our local park.
People lay out blankets and tarps ahead of time.
I've NEVER seen it this early.
The tarps were there on Tuesday, and the fireworks are on Saturday night.
We live not too far from the park, so it will be super busy this weekend.

What I'm looking forward to next month:

Next month is the dog days of Summer!
Or so I hope!
I'm hoping to enjoy lots of days at the pool, more reading simply enjoying life!

What else is new:

Not much is new!

What's your favorite July 4th tradition:

Visiting family in Tennessee!
I used to always go to Tennessee around the 4th to visit family.
Last year I got married and ruined the tradition because I didn't get to visit.
We usually swam all day and had a great grilled meal that night before watching fireworks at one of the lakes.

Here's a little look at July 4th in the past...

One more month down!
Only 6 more months until Christmas!
I'm already working on our Christmas menu and present ideas!
I love shopping early!