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Saturday, December 31, 2016

2016 in the Rearview

My goals for 2016 were:
  • Prepare and compete in my first fitness competition didn't happen this goals has changed
  • Continue growing in my fitness journey and in gainzzzzville!! LOL  I hope to grow my quads and back to epic proportions! I grew and learned a lot this year about fitness and I feel I made significant gains on my physique but its always a work in progress
  • Start my own business Done and Done- started my own personal training business in March.  Although I have stopped training clients as of now it was a perfect start and I still plan on opening more business in the future that hopefully become more permanent
  • Take Caleb on a brother sister cultural graduation trip Completed this goal in June and although I STILL need to recap the trip on my blog (in the drafts)  We took an awesome week long trip to London, UK and Ireland.
  • Take a girls trip to NOLA still a goal but this didn't make it on the completed list
  • Vacation to somewhere extraordinary like Bali, Thailand, or somewhere equally amazing with Hendrik  Not only did we travel to some where amazing we hit BOTH of these places plus a couple more.  I have recapped our Dominican Republic trip but still need to recap our amazing trip this Fall to Bali, Thailand, and Dubai (in drafts)
  • Finish the massive home to do list and declutter/ clean up old furniture, garage, and home in general.  I don't have clutter but there are always build up in drawers and useless items that can go I feel like this is completed but also on going as I completely revamped the shop and parts of our living room but still would like to reorganize our drawers and night stands.
  • Finish my chicken coop and get chickens This got completed back in July and I now collect 6 eggs daily
  • Plan for a great garden I planned and had a great garden with a lot of new items even though my tomatoes didn't fair well
  • Finish my MSA with a bang and start CPA exam preparations BOOM!  Done with that grad degree
  • Work on my 30 before 30 bucket list I did work on this but SEVERAL things carried over for me to hit maybe by 40?
  • Work on myself- cussing, procrastination, focusing on the positive and cutting out negative (people, thinking, situations), not worry so much  I don't think I made much progress on this but there is always next year LOL

On top of the above goals that I put on the blog I also had a goal to read 25 books and I only read 12!! 4 of which were school books YUCK!  

I took 3 amazing vacations- Dominican Republic with Hendrik, London and Ireland with Caleb, and Dubai, Thailand, and Bali with Hendrik.  I still need to blog about 2 of which but I will get it done I have them waiting in my drafts I just need to finish them.

Hendrik and I got engaged.  Again I need to blog about this as well but I will catch up.

I think that was all of 2016 essentially other than the this and that.  I wasn't very good at staying up to date with my blog in 2016 but maybe that will change in 2017...  

Check out my 2017 hopes and goals to find out what all is planned and hoped to achieve for the upcoming year!

Book Review: Down the Rabbit Hole

Wow it has been a while since I have done a book review.  1. Because I have been reading a ton of book series or the same series so I thought it monotonous to rehash each one and 2. I haven't been reading all that much this entire year.  

The past month or so has finally given me the time and the desire to start back up reading.  Over the Thanksgiving holiday my best friends got together to catch up and Rachael told me that a while back she read a book from Holly Madison and it was her tell-all from her days in the Playboy Mansion.  She said it was nonfiction but kept her entertained and it was like reading a sort of gossip magazine.  Coming from the person who got me to read the Harry Potter books I had to look up the book a few nights later and read the synopsis.  It sounded really good so I went ahead and made the cheap purchase of Down the Rabbit Hole and dug in.

Read the Amazon synopsis before my review...you may not make it any further because you will have to stop and go read the entire book yourself!

Lost in Wonderland . . . 
A fairy-tale dream that became a nightmare, and a woman whose strength helped her find a way out to the other side
At 21, small-town Oregon girl Holly Cullen became Holly Madison, Hugh Hefner’s number one girlfriend. But like Alice’s journey into Wonderland, Holly’s plunge down the rabbit hole took her to a world where all was not as it seemed. The fairy-tale life inside the Playboy Mansion—which included A-list celebrity parties and starring in a number one television show—quickly devolved into an oppressive routine of strict rules, manipulation, and battles with ambitious, backstabbing Bunnies that nearly drove Holly to take her own life.
Down the Rabbit Hole is her introspective account of her time inside the Mansion: the drugs, abuse, infamous parties, and Holly’s real behind-the-scenes life with Bridget, Kendra, and Mr. Playboy himself. It is also her chronicle of healing and hope. By telling her story, both a cautionary tale and a celebration of personal empowerment, Holly reminds us of the importance of fighting for our dreams—and of finding the life we deserve.

I literally COULD NOT put this book down.  It is one of those I was reading it every spare minute I had a chance and stayed up WWAAYYY too late several nights foaming at the mouth to read more of Holly's sordid tale.  It was the best gossip book and the best way to fit in some nonfiction into my life. LOL  I can't stand nonfiction I find it SO boring. Down the Rabbit Hole was anything but boring my only negative was I wish there was more.  The perspective that I have now about Playboy and the whole mess is so different than my thinking before.  Not only was it the perfect read it got me back into my reading groove.
Buy it on Amazon HERE

I'm currently reading a book in my favorite series EVER the Women's Murder Club novels by James Patterson.  They are also page turners and can never be published fast enough for me.

How I stay Organized

Some people are just messy, some are organized and some are well...OCD!  I fall somewhere in between VERY organized and OCD.  I plan everything from my daily to dos, monthly meals, to my route when I go to Canton!  The #1 item that I use to support my organizational habits is my yearly planner that has a monthly, weekly, daily breakdown.  I have used Erin Condren before but for 2017 I'm going with my 3rd Plum Paper planner.  Get yours HERE!  

I chose this nice floral design for 2017 and today I plan on organizing my meals for January along with my upcoming week.  

Other tools I use to help to stay organized is Pinterest which I get meal ideas and I love Numbers on my MacBook.  I can make long-term to do lists of items that I need to get done "eventually" around the house. Ever since the time changed I have been in a bit of a funk but the new year is a perfect way to get out of it and the first step is being prepared and organized!

Insta Dump #32

November Instagram dump.  November was a fast paced month that was spattered with naked baby butts and fire pit fires!

Lusting over Magnolia Magazine// late night work flow turned into early morning work flow// lazy days in my robe// I voted// Case cutie// 2 hours of getting hit in the face// clean house equals hotel feels// feeling like Christmas// Case making his Playgirl debut// ready for a shower// fire pit night with my love

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Insta Dump #31

October was such an awesome month..more to come on that but I traveled literally the entire month see my Instagram feed!

visiting the college boy// had a movie and sushi date on a Sunday afternoon// relaxing and decompressing on a Monday night// packing for Thailand// been up for 37 hours in Dubai// completed leg workout// back attack before our flight to Phuket// returned to paradise// recovering from my may Thai session by the pool// relaxing in Bali with my love// peace out Bali// Dallas bound from Dubai

Insta Dump #30

September was a fantastic month with my Instagram loaded with a ton of awesome workouts and getting a lot of work done!
worked out with an 18 yo// planning vacation// girl boss// 4 am airport run// bedside motivation// Case loved his mocha// delt acation// empty gym muscled up// casual sporty work day// those lats tho// round 2 of cardio complete

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

BIG Happenings Since March

Wow my blogging has really slacked off but I'm almost caught up on big events and such so I thought I would do a little catch up post of snaps and things that have been going on with me since March. 

March was an eventful month for me and pretty monumental as I finally made a move in my work-life that I wanted to do....
  • I started my own personal training business!!! It has completely taken off and I have had full books since March.  I am still juggling 40 hours or MORE at Hendrik's office on top of my clients so I am one busy gal but I LOVE it!  
  • I also made a few trips to Lowe's to get my ferns for the front porch, more flowers for my pots near the front door, and also my garden seedlings.  Max even went along and was the perfect puppy!  
  • Working out continued as scheduled....meaning everyday LOL  I love seeing all my muscles.

April was just a great month in general.  My personal training business had taken off and I was finding the balance for all my work and play and hobbies....  

  • my MMA training is still going great and I have come so far in the past few months.  I have gotten punched in the face but I'm still waiting for a black eye or bloody nose I think it's coming soon LOL.  
  • We have taught the dogs to drive!! See pic below.  
  • I received my white belt in Brazilian Ju Jitsu after a training seminar and I was completely surprised and was definitely not expecting to come home with anything other than more knowledge and some ninja skills.  
  • By the end of the month my garden had really taken off.  This year was my first year to plant onions and also cauliflower.  My onions did so awesome and I got huge heads of cauliflower from each plant I planted.  The only thing is that I didn't realize that once cauliflower produces it is done so I will need to plant 2 to 3 times as much next year.   

May was probably THE BEST month of the year thus far.  So many memorable things happened that all were results of a lot of hard work.  
  • First I graduated with my MASTERS DEGREE and I'm still adjusting to life after the anxiety of 25 years in school. LOL  If I have any down time I get seriously anxious and nervous because I have a nag in my brain that says I shouldn't be sitting and relaxing. It's like a deadline that I've forgotten.
  • The week after graduation Hendrik and I made a quick getaway to the Dominican Republic for a long weekend to unwind.
  • Once we returned semi-tanned from Punta Cana we had our first professional photos as a couple made by the awesome Rocki Hoops.  The pictures couldn't have came out more perfect as just about everyone of them the best.
  • At the end of the month my youngest brother graduated from high school and it was a nice graduation but it was a bit hot as it was held in the new high school gym because of the weather.
  • My mom and Mike had a little backyard BBQ graduation party for Caleb and I.  Colby caked me in the face which gave him and Hendrik a BIG laugh!!  A lot of people came out to support and congratulate Caleb and I and it was a really nice night.
View graduation post HERE

Read about our long weekend in the Dominican HERE

See more of these awesome pictures HERE

June I continued the busy trend of running myself to death...
  • I took Caleb on a once-in-a-lifetime graduation trip to London, England and Ireland.  I'm in the middle of those post and they will be up soon. They are the only drafts I currently have!!
  • My inner mermaid started coming out one night after MMA which lead me to come up with the idea that mermaid type scales would make an awesome tattoo!!!  
  • Hendrik I kept up with our Sunday afternoon workouts together. It's a great way to catch up and unwind before our week starts.

July was the first month that wasn't jam packed with travel and pre-made plans.  I was able to actually start to feel what it was like to be done with school and I made it my goal to get organized at home by conquering a massive to do list.  I got all but 1 item done...which is to clean out Hendrik's night stand.    It was a busy month and eventful but not stressful and just really all around GREAT!
  • I copied one of my clients and got an undercut.  My mom wasn't impressed but I loved it and made a lot of new friends at the gym in MP.  LOL
  • That same night I carried on with my badass-ery and got hit and gave some hits for the first time sparring with my MMA coach.  It was so much fun and even though I have a lot of work to do to be where I think I need to be I will keep on going back for more.  
  • I made about 20 jars of homemade spaghetti sauce using THIS recipe.  We are really excited because it has been over a year and a half since having spaghetti sauce seeing Hendrik refuses to eat the processed store bought version and it also isn't my favorite either.
  • Max stayed cool by using the cow tank as his own swimming pool and wouldn't come out no matter the reason.
  • My garden kept impressing this year with all it's gifts.  Besides the cauliflower and onions that were both new additions this year I also planted cantaloupe and boy did we enjoy it.  We got 2-3 cantaloupe each week from mid-June through August.  They were delicious and a store bought melon just isn't the same now.
  • We made a trek to Fort Worth to the man's version of Canton....Ritchie Brothers Auctions.  We were looking for a tractor but it wasn't up for sale yet.  We did find some neat deals and it was something to see but like Hendrik to Canton...I won't be going back for a while.  Pallets of ratchet straps just don't impress me.  
  • I got in some late night workouts in Mt. Pleasant and took advantage of an empty gym to get some pics of me squatting in my new shoes.  I had been debating for a while about trying Under Armor shoes and I'm so glad I finally did.  They are so comfortable :)
  • At the end of the month I went with some other kickboxing students to a Bang Muay Thai seminar at the Onnit headquarters in Austin.  It was a great trip with new people and a fantastic seminar by Duane Ludwig the creator of BMT which I have been studying for a year and half now.  I hope to make another seminar this year in Austin but if Professor Ludwig can't work Texas into his trip their is talk of a team trip to Colorado to train at his home base school there.  

August was just a nice normal month that was smooth sailing and was really the first month all year that we/I had no real plans and I got into a great weekend routine that consisted of lounging and doing house chores on Saturdays and then meal prep and couple time on Sundays.
  • The first weekend of the month was Case's first birthday.  My mom and I helped Lara plan an barnyard/farm theme and it turned out so great. Case got a ton of neat things and we had a lot of fun.  His cake was wonderful!!!
  • Hendrik and I lounged the good part of the next day watching DVRd shows and Netflix. We don't hardly EVER do that so it was so nice.
  • I completely revamped the west part of our living room.  The pool table used to be there but now that we have no more boat and a lot more space I made Hendrik a little hunting area/man cave in the shop which freed up the perfect amount of space to pull off this.  It is by far my most favorite spot in the house right now and I've made it a habit to start my weekend mornings there blogging, catching up on emails, and drinking my coffee.  
  • We decided in August that we would definitely try to go on vacation in October seeing we haven't taken a big trip this year yet.  Bali or Thailand has been on the menu since last year for the both of us so I took August to do a little vacation planning.

Although we are at the END of September I still have a lot of awesome things going on through the end of the year.  Upcoming family trip to Stephenville, upcoming vacation with Hendrik, making some great strides with my physique, and the holidays are just some of the things I have going on.  2016 has been a life changing year and it isn't even over yet!!  I'm so glad I'm almost caught up on blogging and that I actually have time to continue doing something I really enjoy.

Stay tuned!

Saturday, September 24, 2016

FINALLY....the Finished Chicken Coop

My unfinished chicken coop had been a fixture in my yard for months and months.....over a year!!  After  I graduated I really wanted to mark off ALL the things on my to do list for around the house and finishing the chicken coop was one of them. Hendrik wasn't going to do it himself and his plan was to have some of the guys that work for us do it, but of course...they are always too busy!  I took it upon myself to ask a good carpenter I happened to know come give me an estimate on a couple outdoor projects. He told me how much and how long it would take him I was like whatever it takes let's finish this bad boy.

A couple weeks after that my coop was finished and all it took was 2 days worth of work.  As soon as it was finished I raced to the feed store which still had chickens and purchased 15.  One of our workers had chicken houses and had some chickens that Pilgrims wouldn't take back because of their color so he brought me 7 of those.  I was off to a great start. 

That following weekend I went to Lowe's and got my boxes, corn flowers, and lavender to make the cutest little flower boxes to go on the front of my coop.  I loved the way it turned out.  Now in September by flowers have burnt and my flower boxes need a couple drainage holes drilled for next year but my coop is still functioning and I couldn't be happier with it.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

My New Camera

Last year I published THIS wish list and it is now all complete with the things I've wanted and have gotten myself or someone has gotten for me.  The last item that I got was a new camera.  I had been wanting a more advanced one for a while now and so after my old point and shoot too a crap in the Dominican I knew I had to jump ship to bigger and better before my brothers European graduation trip.  I didn't want to be stranded with only my phone to document our travels.  I got the Sony Alpha5000 that I had been eyeing for a few years now and I love it.  It has all sorts of settings that I have no clue how to operate yet but the auto settings are fantastic.  I can't wait to put it to the test with our upcoming trip!  If you are looking into a new camera this one would be a great investment.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Travel Tips & Tricks #1

After traveling to 15+ countries I've learned a thing or two and had a thing or two done to me in regards to traveling.  
After our weekend trip to Mexico a year ago (see HERE)!!! I thought of the idea of this post and jotted down some notes.  
I'm just now getting down to finishing it but I think its a great time seeing we are gearing up for our next big trip to Thailand and Bali with 2 very long layovers in Dubai!  I can't wait to show Hendrik around Phuket and Dubai and for us both to experience new things in Bali and Bangkok.  

But I digress....back to some funnies and some helpful tips.

  • Airport drama- on our Mexico trip we had a connection in San Diego and there was a whopping 1 restaurant in our terminal so of course everyone flocked to it.  It was a seat your self restaurant and tons of people were waiting. I saw a table where the people were getting up so I went in and sat down.  No more did I sit down but these two Yankee bitches plopped their bags down and started to tell me to get up this and that...."they had been waiting" I got an attitude quick not only are they being rude as hell I'm hungry and we had all been waiting.  I of course told them this and they kept on Hendrik comes up and won't sit down...I was not going to get up just on principle if I would have been by myself I would have sat there and let them sit on down and had my lunch with them.  As I get up I tell them that it is seat your self...first come first serve BITCHES!!! and walk off.  The entire restaurant witnessed their rude actions and couldn't believe it.  A nice couple gave us their table as they were leaving but made sure we were the ones to have it....We ordered our food and tried to laugh it off
  • This entire situation brings me to my next point....we got ready to pay for our food and catch our next fight and come to find out a family that were sitting beside above bitches who witnessed everything had been nice enough to pay for our food as well!  I thought it was so nice of them especially given the lack of manners by the other people and it turned the entire experience from negative to positive!  While traveling is so stressful and tiring on everyone paying it forward is a nice way to really brighten someones day!
  • Pay attention to which toiletry you use- Hendrik had a nice teeth brushing one morning with some feminine cream LOLOL!!! travel size tube doesn't always equal toothpaste.  Bet he won't make that mistake again
  • To rent a car or not- this is something we have done a lot of and also chosen not too.  The main factors that we consider when renting a car or not is the length of the trip and our plans while traveling.  For long weekends at resorts we opt to use shuttle and taxi services.  Mainly the point of these short jaunts is to recharge and we don't plan on getting out and about that much. Not only would the car rental go to waste we usually don't have enough time to drive around in a car.  If we go anywhere for 5 days or more and plan on staying in the same spot then we do rent a car.  If you plan on renting a car be sure you do your research on reserving one before your trip and also look at the credit cards they accept, the amount of deposit required, and also any hidden fees!
  • Debit cards used to be our biggest problem while traveling.  Until recently we wouldn't use credit cards mainly because we didn't have any and also because we like paying for cash/ debiting our accounts right then so we don't worry about interest or paying a bill or anything like that.  The down fall is that we usually have to take a lot of cash and we ALWAYS had problems with debit cards in other countries.  Most of the time they weren't even accepted....because of this we know have a joint credit card we use really solely for travel purposes and since we did this we have ZERO problems it is so nice not having to worry about that.  Also the addition of the US finally getting up with the times and adding chips to our debit cards had limited the problems especially when we are in Europe.  European countries have been using chip technology for close to 10 years so it is widely known about and accepted.  I recommend if you do use a credit card then Visa will be a sure fire way to not have any problems as it is widely accepted worldwide.  We do still carry a good bit of cash for safety and travel security.
  • I do a lot of research on travel before we go somewhere but something I always fail at is finding and planning on places to eat.  Although I do make us itineraries they aren't concrete and only are a list of things I want to accomplish so it is really hard to pin point a place and time that we are going to be somewhere for dinner or lunch!  Due to this we probably haven't been experiencing the best of food that each location has to offer.  We will happen upon a fabulous meal here or there but my goal for future travels is to have one fabulous meal a day! 

Happy Traveling

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Insta Dump #29

August insta dump is short and sweet with a bit of variety this month!

relaxing on a Sunday// in a funk while my life runs me// new harry potter book...move over Hendrik// Onnit fight night with Whitney Miller// enjoyed beating matt up and get beat up on// morning out by myself to Ikea and Target// working on my fighting fitness// blogging in my new favorite spot// sitting area living room redo// planning our next vacation// botty pump with my celestial bodies//

Our Long Weekend in the Dominican

We usually have taken our big vacation around Spring break the past few years but this year I was in my last semester of grad school and we had a ton going on with the businesses so I thought it was best to stay at home and focus on all the work at hand.  Because of that we didn't book a week long vacation in March we powered through and I got graduated and things were calming down.  I had been planning a graduation trip for my brother for the Summer but I really wanted Hendrik and I to get a little break.  With the Summer plans approaching and us knowing that we wouldn't really be able to get away for a while I found us an amazing resort in the Dominican Republic.  I booked the trip for a long weekend which is just enough time for us to get away, disconnect, reconnect, and recharge.  I usually don't want to do an all inclusive package simply because I like to experience the culture of the place we are visiting and don't want to "just stay on the resort" like all the other Americans.  This trip was different I had graduated the week before and was really reeling from the past few months.  It had been crazy busy and very stressful and all I wanted to do was sit on a beach with a book and a bottle of water and sleep, tan, eat, repeat.   

We left early Friday May 20th.  We stayed the night in Dallas the night before since we had to be at the airport by 4:30 am. We arrived early afternoon around 1.  We weren't able to check into our room until 2:30 so we set our bags down and went to the lunch buffet to refuel.  We hung out there a bit and then got a few items from the hotel shop like a tooth brush and sunscreen....both of which I had forgot to pack for myself!  By the time we had finished that it was time to get our room keys.  We found  our room, changed, and headed back down to the pool.  We decided on where to make dinner reservations for the rest of our stay there and booked that as well as a few activities.  They had something like 9 restaurants on the property so we had plenty of options not to mention the usual casual buffets if you wanted that.  For the first night we chose to eat at the Mediterranean restaurant and it was delicious. 

at airport with the breakfast essentials...banana and coffee
You could see the sea foam blue waters from all over the property and the water was so calm it was beautiful!

the main pool on the adults only resort 
Our second day in the Dominican, Saturday May 21st we had an awesome day that started out with ultimate relaxation.  After a nice breakfast we had massages that were 90 minutes and glorious!  Not only did we get a deal by booking on our arrival day of buy one get one free but the entire atmosphere of the spa was relaxing.  Once we had our massages we got changed and had a nice workout in the gym.  Out of all hotel gyms this one was by far the best I'd ever seen. They actually had weights and some really good machines.  The only downfall was the gym was really crowded.  I got in some quality reps for legs then we headed out.  We walked the long way that we hadn't taken back to our area and saw more of the resort and changed into our swim suits and grabbed our snorkel gear from our room.  We walked a ways down the beach away from our resort and found a snorkel spot.  We didn't see much but it was nice trying out our own gear Hendrik had gotten us for all our trips and just seeing the different plants and things.  After snorkeling we settled in at the pool and found a couple from Michigan that we talked to for a while. We had early dinner reservations that night so we headed back to the room around 6 to get ready.  We ate at the Mexican restaurant that night and although it was OK it wasn't the best and we agreed that if were staying longer we wouldn't go back there.  When your from Texas other people's "Mexican" just doesn't compete. LOL After dinner we walked around the mall area of the resort and watched a portion of a musical that was a compilation of 4 popular Broadway shows.  Hendrik was for sure not feeling it and we were really tired so we headed back to the room.  I always feel the pressure to stay up late at night on vacation because I don't want to miss out but this vacation and really any is VACATION it is to rest and relax so we have to remind ourselves that its ok to head in when we feel ready. 

our snorkel spot

Sunday May 22nd our last full day in the Dominican was probably the most rewarding!  The day that we arrived we were booking all our dinner reservations and Hendrik wanted to know about surfing so we found the concierge and they told us the price and all the details.  Well I turned and said awesome you book that and while you're there I'll just hang out and do the pool or whatever!  He was like well your not going to do it with me??  After watching the victory and then all the struggle that came with his surfing in Costa Rica I wasn't sure it was for me but it was something that he wanted me to do with him so I said I'd try.  We booked our trip for half a day so we had to be up early for breakfast and ready to be picked up around 7:45 that morning.  We picked up 2 other people at a neighboring resort and headed to the other side of the island to the main surfing beach there in the Dominican.  We got our boards and rash guards, a bit of on the beach instruction, then headed out.  

OMG we had so much fun and with the nice waves and our own instructors we both did awesome.  We surfed about an hour to an hour and half before our break and it was the learning part of it and really getting our feet under neath us....LITERALLY!  We took a drink break and then headed back into some different waters so we could catch a bit bigger waves.  We had the best experience and the photographer took some amazing pictures of us.  We didn't know they would be taking pictures but I think they sold the disc for 40$$ and it was so worth it.  We have the best memories now and some great action shots.  We now plan on not only snorkeling every where we go but also surfing!  The only thing is that we had someone pushing us from behind at take off so we both have to get better and learn how to take off ourselves but other than that we are good to go. 

We returned from surfing around lunch so we got a salad and chicken lunch from the buffet then parked it at the pool where I napped most of the afternoon and Hendrik swam and wondered around.  We went into the room a bit early this day just to get ready to leave, get ready for dinner and we had gotten a bit burned from surfing in weird places and it was starting to make it's presence known.  That night we ate at the steak house restaurant and it was really good.  We walked along the beach back to our room and watched some movies before we turned in for the night. 

the view from the lunch buffet!

May 23rd, Monday was the day we headed back home.  We packed up and brought our luggage down the same time we headed to breakfast so we wouldn't have to make so many trips.  At breakfast I remembered that I hadn't got our usual names in the sand pic so after breakfast I walked out and did that.  I had to use my phone as a camera because the night before my camera just decided to quit working all together.  We lounged around the lobby area and drank some expresso while we waited for the shuttle to pic us up for the airport.

Although we didn't see a ton of the country and the culture of the Dominican this long weekend trip was the perfect vacation and exactly what we wanted it to be.  It is crazy how quickly some time away can change our dynamic and really get us back in the groove of each other.  With working together and doing everything together there is a lot of everyday that is in our relationship even if we try to not bring it home.  I think we do a pretty good job of managing it but vacations are always just that extra push we need.  We came home tanned, smiling, reconnected, and rejuvenated and that is what we wanted.  

We stayed at the adults only section of the Barcelo Bavaro Beach resort which was all inclusive, nicely priced, and had everything we needed or could want.  Check it out HERE!

Until next time...HAPPY TRAVELS!

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