Archive of ‘Friendship’ category

Mexico: Living Life Full Time

Mexico 011 I know how to describe my life. Thanks- Brian and Jessica- I am living life full time. The departure date arrived for Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, and at 4:30 a.m. on Thursday morning, I was ready to go! Adelia arrived, and we headed to the airport for a 7:00 a.m. flight. We know how to do breakfast: Rosie’s cinnamon rolls and my hot sausage balls.Fast pass in Memphis is awesome!
Checking luggage and going through security was easy. When we arrived at the terminal, I met Brian and Jessica at the airport.  We had great flights, and they were all on schedule. When we arrived, a big bus provided by World Ventures took us to the Marival Resort and Suites in Nuevo Vallarta.
http://www.marival.com/

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When we pulled in to the area, you could not really tell how beautiful it was going to be. This was the view from our room. Our rooms were very nice, and we had everything we needed. A welcome tequila with salt and lime was waiting on us.Mexico 007Mexico 001

 

There were several free excursions offered by World Ventures, and many other excursions that you could book yourself if you wanted to pay the hotel:
http://www.marival.com/ToDo/

 

We chose the city tour and the first stop was a small zoo at an intersection in town then to the tequila distillery.

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The guide did an amazing job explaining the process, showing us the process, and pouring shots.

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Agave

Agave

He gave each of us the opportunity to say “mucho” or “pequeno”- I think that is what the words were. These people are marketing geniuses. You get shots and then you must make a decision if you want to purchase any tequilas to bring home. You are allowed to bring home three bottles of liquor.   Mexico 053

After this stop, we then visited a home where wood carving was the occupation of the family. In Mexico if you cut a tree then you must replace with several trees in its place. This is where we had lunch. After tequila the thing to eat is a spicy burrito- not really!  Mexico 062

The tour guide Santa was very knowledgeable, and she shared with us the history of her people (This is how she referred to her ancestors). The tour took us by a school and then we visited a church.

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Air conditioning is still a luxury in Mexico. Most schools have fans now, but some schools do not. The last stop was the beautiful small town of Bucerias.   http://www.bestofbucerias.com/page_about_bucerias_mexico_1

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I immediately loved the restaurants on the harbor and the small flea market.

At the all-inclusive resort, you were allowed to make reservations in two of the specialty restaurants on the ground. We chose the Italian and the Mexican restaurant. The breakfast was also really good.

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There was a chart with the name of drinks and what ingredient was included in each behind the outside bartenders that would show what was in each drink. This helped to conquer any language barrier.

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Each night we would gather in the open area and have a drink and visit. I met so many nice people.

Jodie and Aaron My first Australian friends.

Jodie and Aaron
My first Australian friends.

One night we went to see the resorts’ version of a tribute to Michael Jackson.  We enjoyed Karaoke another night, and it was interesting to hear one song in Spanish and then the next song in English.  Mexico 113

There were peddlers that visited you on the beach. They were not pushy or rude, but they would ask you if you wanted to look at anything or needed anything. Some were very talented salespeople. Before I left, I had silver earrings, silver ring, a dress, two sarongs, tequila from the tour and pure vanilla extract. I also made purchases at the airport from the Pharmacia.  While on your way to the plane, you can do some shopping!

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The college championship game was being played the night we were flying home. We watched some of the game at Buffalo Wild Wings in Houston airport with Brian and Jessica, but then it was time to board the plane. The airline attendant would share the score when she could find it. Adelia and I are both SEC football girls.

It was a body shock to walk outside when we arrived in Memphis. The weather in Mexico was perfect. Daily average of 75-80 and 60 daily average low. Some of the hotel staff had on coats! This is winter to them. I will return to Puerto Vallarta!Mexico 021

We were late arriving home, but it was a wonderful Dream trip!

http://www.puertovallarta.net/what_to_do/bucerias-nayarit.php

Thankful

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When you ask someone what they are thankful for, you normally get the response of family, friends, and God in different orders. If he/she has been through a serious illness then the person will add ….and my health.

I am very thankful for all of those things, but there are three things that make me smile every day!Coffee

  1. Coffee

I love coffee. I look forward to my coffee every morning. I am not a nice person until I have at least one cup. Yes, there are different levels of coffee. The smallest finest ground fresh coffee is the best to me.

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  1. Technology

I am able to be an integral part of my daughter’s lives because of the amazing generation changing cell phone. They are my lighthouse in the sea of life.

We have a text group recently named by Kelley- *My People*, and we talk about whatever good or bad is happening to us.  With Kelley in Jackson and working horrendous hours in residency and Jade being a full time working mom with a part-time job and talking college courses, the hours in the day are stretched really thin for them, but this allows us all to stay connected.

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  1. Positive People

I love talking to positive upbeat people who have been through unbelievable hurtful bad things in their lives, but they dig deep within their soul, and they find a reason to smile every day. They do not belittle other people to avoid dealing with their own pain.   We are all in this together and not a one of us will escape alive, and karma is always a bitch, so find one thing every day to be grateful for having because in the blink of an eye, it may be gone.

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Elizabeth Gilbert said it best today(11-26-15) in her blog post:

“I learned my gratitude by having practiced its opposite (ingratitude) for so many sad years. And after years of nothing ever being quite good enough, life finally taught me this — that without gratitude, nothing is EVER gonna be quite good enough. No place will ever be the right place, nothing will ever happen the right time, no reward is ever enough, all the people around you are always the wrong people, the room is always too hot or too cold, somebody else is always having a better time than you, somebody else always has a better car than you, or a better job, or a better marriage, or better hair, or a better destiny in general…and life is basically THE SUCK. I know this from painful experience, and it’s terrible.”

I am going to strive to practice gratitude and be thankful every day! If you make only one New Year’s resolution, choose this one.a280493fd1ffbb281a30062c9f8d6bb9

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Travel UnorganiZation

images (1)Travel unorganization makes me crazy in all aspects of my life, but it really stresses me out when it involves travel. It is a part of my control problem- I know that but I want to control the time and make it flow as smooth as possible. Does this suck some of the fun away? Well maybe… and one day I am going to get in the car and just drive with no itinerary, no printed directions, no reservations and no list of coffee shops along the way… one day, but until then this is a list that will help you plan your next trip.

  1. Destination: To make this decision you need to know yourself. Think back to the best vacation that you have ever had. Where did you go? What did you do?

You cannot duplicate an experience which is why I strive to live in the moment, but a destination that you know you will love is not a bad choice. I try to go some places I have been before, but then I try to visit at least one place a year that I have never been before.What is the length of time you can spend on this holiday? This is an important question.

  1. Money: How much money can I spend on this trip? Set an amount and figure out if it is feasible. Miscellaneous costs such as will always be added. Tips, etc.
  1. Transportation- Will I fly? What is the price of the ticket? Will I drive? How many tanks of gas will the trip require?

If I fly, will I need to rent a car? Will a taxi be needed from the airport to hotel and back to airport? Always consider how much driving you will do when you get there. Will I cruise? If so, you can eliminate some cost such as renting a car.images (2)

  1. Accommodations: This requires some major research. Check the prices of all hotels, bed and breakfasts, and look at my favorite place: Airbnb.com. Some have had success at VRBO.

If you book a hotel, the hotel will hold your debit card and it may take a few days for the charges to be correct. I recommend using a credit card for travel. The credit card companies are easier to deal with when you have lost a card and charges are made to your card by the stolen party.

  1. Food: Budget for three meals a day and how much money you plan to spend on each. Alcohol should also be figured in if you drink and also late night snacks. If it is an all-inclusive hotel or a cruise, then figure in the tip for all service providers.
  1. Entertainment: How will you entertain yourself while you are away? One of the reasons the beach is a cheaper favorite destination for me is that I can go to the beach for most of the day and be entertained. It was a life saver when my girls were small, and the budget was very tight. (My sweet girls thought the beach was the only option for vacation for several years.)images (3)

If you book a hotel, the hotel will hold your debit card and it may take a few days for the charges to be correct. I recommend using a credit card for travel. The credit card companies are easier to deal with when you lose a card and charges are made to your card by the stolen party.

This will help you get started with successful planning an organized trip.

What should I pack? What else do I need to know before my departure? Tune in tomorrow…72a26e11ffae2f4732e28d16c484124f

Fit Camp

Be the best version of you Lori and I were walking one day in the park, and we saw a group of ladies working out. Lori walked over and talked to Casey Sanders for a few minutes, and we decided to try Fit Camp.

It has been a life changer for me. I need a coach and support to be able to stick with a physical workout. This may go back to my track and basketball days of long ago, but I need a schedule.

The things I love about Fitcamp:

  • Motivates and inspires you to be the best that you can be, and everyone’s “best” is different. You are never judged in any way. I may do five burpees, and my neighbor beside may do twenty, but that is ok if it is the best that you can do. We are there to improve ourselves not to compare our progress by looking at someone else.
  • Always a different routine- there is no time for boredom! Casey is a professional who knows how to plan the workout that we need on that given day.
  • It is always challenging because you are competing against time and yourself.
  • Friendships and support: I miss boot camp when I am out of town because I miss that wonderful post workout happy, and I miss my friends.Fitcamp -1
  • Set schedule: I work out at the same time every day Monday through Thursday, but there are several great times to choose from if your schedule needs more flexibility.
  • You feel stronger mentally and physically. This camp has allowed me to love and accept my body. When you have been physically active most of your life and you get older, you will notice things are not quite where they are supposed to be and that is ok with me if I am making an effort to be the best that I can be.
  • My diet has changed. I try to eat healthier. The meal suggestions that are e-mailed to us help. Also hearing other people talk about what they are doing to be healthier or to lose weight. Read the ingredients on the back of what you buy. It will scare you a little.
  • At home work outs are also sent to your e-mail (I have not been successful at that… I need Casey and the girls.)

I am in the best shape of my life since high school- 32 years ago. I feel that I am doing something instead of whining about how I feel or how I look.  I have lost four inches which results in no back fat over the top of my jeans. Some of my jeans and panties get a little baggy after a few hours of wear now, but that is ok with me!

I hope to improve, but that will take dedication from me to do workouts on the weekends and work on my diet more!  eat good and feel good

Join us or join something if you cannot make a commitment to exercise or if you are unable to motivate and push yourself. What we do in warm up would have been my entire exercise routine, and I would have stopped not realizing that I could do so much more!

Be kind to yourself and give yourself one hour a day! I wish

Boulder, Colorado: Type A Retreat #1

The Boulder, Colorado- Type A Retreat began this morning.  I am sitting on a bench waiting on Green Pass to arrive eating cheese, bread, walnuts, and grapes.  I did not agree to the no carb week with my fitness girls, but because of my fit camp, I am breezing through the long airport walks with my excessive luggage.  It is hot in Denver!

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My last real solo get away ended in August when I returned from Costa Rica. I realized the days were passing, the stress was mounting, and the hamster wheel was moving faster with no slow down button visible.  If you wait on someone to go with you then you may never go! Do not wait: Go by yourself.

I did not retire to work so much, but that is where I am comfortable because of the “type A high energy control” factor that I struggle with every day. I also love Kate Spade purses.

I did what I always do before a trip. I push my body way past the healthy limit with very little sleep and marking off the freaking to do list.  I was trying to get caught up with classes and make sure the binders are ready for Indiana.   It also just happened to be my color the gray week and the Botox week. I left for the airport at 5:30 a.m.

How did I decide on Boulder?  Not sure- but I wanted to go somewhere west that was affordable with no driving that I had never been before and the Denver airport and I are very well acquainted. If driving was accessible then I would try to tour the west in five days and return home physically and emotionally shot.

I found a great loft apartment in downtown Boulder using Airbnb.com.  This is my second great experience with Airbnb. I did look at apartments in Italy, but the plane fare was $2,000.00, so I decided to put that on hold for a little while.June and July 2015 181

June and July 2015 179Green Pass Shuttle was an awesome way to travel from the airport to Boulder. They pick you up at the airport and drop you off at the address on your reservation.

When I arrived this very sweet couple, Jason and Bella, greeted me and showed me the loft, and they were very kind and hospitable. He was from Texas, so the conversation went to his love of fried catfish.  Jason and Bella are members of the Planet Mish Mash Band. Check out their videos: “Green Light” is my favorite. http://www.planetmishmash.com/videos/

The loft is so perfect. It is homey and small and so not cluttered up with unnecessary stuff. I have been inspired again to declutter, and I have a clearer vision of what to do as far as furniture and things for my house.  I loved the foyer and sitting area of this building.June and July 2015 186

June and July 2015 184After unpacking, I made the long walk to Whole Foods and to the wine store. Using the app on my phone to the closest grocery store did not cross my mind. The contents of the fridge clearly shows the man who lives here when he is in this country has a very healthy diet. I think most people that live in Boulder do.June and July 2015 174

June and July 2015 175I stayed in tonight to rest up for Saturday with awesome food and wine and this view. The temperature is in the low 60’s. It is wonderful. I am glad I brought a sweatshirt.  June and July 2015 183

Thank you Lori for your encouragement and the positive light that you shed on my life! You are always encouraging me to go, to do, and to be thankful for my blessed life.

12 Things to Share

  - March 18, 2014 at 08:00AMCompfight 语录 图说  

12 Things to Share is  my first post in a long while, and my writing soul is not happy because I love to share, but I have been too busy working and play and planning  (so that I can travel later) to write very much. I need to re-prioritize my life again which I think happens to us all on a regular basis or it should. I am happy that I recognize that, so we will see what life unfolds.
What I have written is in notebooks and scraps of paper on planes or late at night and needs serious revision. (Yes, I need to re-think this and write more because it soothes my soul and allows my small spark of creativity to flow.)

  1. If you are packing for two trips simultaneously, make sure you put the right things in the right suitcase.

The contact cases that I have mentioned before are the most wonderful liquid traveling accessories for flying. I use the cases for liquid make up, moisturizer, retina A, toothpaste, etc… I can do the quart flying limit with a little space left over by using the hotels shampoo, conditioner and lotion.

  1. Michigan and Indiana people are very nice, kind and hospitable. (Their ancestral lines must be Southern or either our folks came from the North.)
    Great places I have eaten in these cities:

South Bend, Indiana: Rocco’s Pizza
Battle Creek, MI: Clara’s on the River, Malia’s, Addington Hills Café
St. Joseph, MI: The Boulevard Inn &Bistro

The Michigan shoreline is beautiful, and I have only seen one area. I hope to see more soon.  

  1. Ole Miss is everywhere– planes, meetings, airports!
    Tailgating family is family even though you may only spend seven Saturdays a year together. We will miss Ms. Peg’s laughter, hugs, chess squares and smiles so much this year.

    We will miss you, Ms. Peg.

    We will miss you, Ms. Peg.

  2. The history of Notre Dame is impressive, and the dome is unbelievable. Touchdown Jesus was pretty awesome also. The three Notre Dame Football players that I met were nice, polite and respectful guys.
    sun sets on a win Glenn Simmons via Compfight
  1. I am thankful for the disappointments and failures and the successes that led me to where I am today!
  1. Gigi Land is a happy land. When my grandson reaches for me or when he sees me and his eyes twinkle, it makes the heart happy. How do little ones know where “their bread is buttered”? Unconditional love is such a rare and precious thing.IMG_2899
  1. I love being the passenger on a motorcycle. I will not or should not ever be the driver, and my friends are saying, “No, you should not.”More Bikes Lester Public Library via Compfight
  1. To be physically fit, I must have a trainer/coach. I am unable to push myself beyond my comfort zone. It may go back to the eight years of basketball or track when someone told me to run this amount, and I knew I could not stop, but I need someone to tell me what I am going to do. The warm-up in Fit Camp would be my entire work out if I was in charge. I have never felt better! It makes me feel strong and confident and not just physically- it makes me feel mentally stronger.  The participants also make it great. There is no judgement, and there is no negativity: it is a positive part of everyone’s day. If one participant can do 50 burpees and I can do 15, it is ok.

Food Prep is the key as Casey our wonder woman trainer tells us!  Having almonds, beef jerky and cauliflower with me on a driving trips helps.  Convenience stores and fast food restaurants are bad places to fuel your body.IMG_2979

Stop at a grocery store and buy fruit when you are traveling. Do not forget the fork like I did one time. Watermelon is messy in the car.

Stop at a grocery store and buy fruit when you are traveling. Do not forget the fork like I did one time. Watermelon is messy in the car.

  1. Doing a good deed makes you feel good! Remember to Pay It Forward!
  1. I do not like yard work anymore and that is ok. I had rather work more and pay someone to do it. I want my flowers to look beautiful, but I do not want to pull the grass out between the flowers.
  1. House renovation project #47 was a success. It is amazing what new doors, light switches, and a new coat of paint and new cabinet doors will do for your home.I mixed three old paints and came up with the color in my living area and kitchen. It was perfect: I think it was divine intervention.IMG_2713IMG_2934IMG_2737
    The decorating is another story; I was not given that gene. It is very much like fashion to me. You were blessed with it or you were not.
    What do I keep? What do I give away? What do I buy? How do I utilize what I have?  I have been looking at the collection of “do not wants and do not know what to do with” for a month… Maybe this week.

Caution: I wanted new paint, new doors and light switches and electrical outlets then I looked at my horrible white enamel cabinets with a red thing down the front. They had to go!  There is a domino effect… I want to do this, so now I want to do this… Add money to the projected cost when you are financing a renovation, but oh, it is so worth it.

Now for #48- the big den—the football watching party room! This will be next.

  1. Read Four Friends by Robyn Carr. It sheds a new light on friendships and menopause!

Have a great week!

Florence: SA Day

Florence 023DT FLorenceHow do you celebrate Singles Awareness Day? Go to Florence – no, not Italy- Alabama!  I started pondering this question, and I decided to do what I love to do best which is go to a different city and see new things and meet new people. Florence, AL, would be a fun quick trip.  I had been to Florence one other time in a conflicting September a few years back with a friend celebrating her birthday and Fall Single Awareness Day, so I had seen some of downtown.  My first thought was my second home Destin, but that needs to be a longer trip.

I asked Michelle what spa to call, and then preceded to book an appointment with Epicurean Spa, and I made reservations for the Hampton Downtown; they have an online check in that is awesome. Do not choose the Hampton Midtown by mistake. I called the wrong one first, and I was informed that Applebee’s was the only restaurant within walking distance. I knew that was not the correct Hampton.  I did check with Marriott, but there were no vacancies, and the spa was a wee bit expensive. Even though it is rated very high as far as Marriott spas, I felt confident that spa treatments are great wherever you go.

I waited late to book the spa, so I was up bright and early leaving Tupelo for my 9:00 spa time. I had a body wrap and detoxifying treatment and a skin purifying treatment and relaxing deep cleansing facial. My massage therapist was the young and beautiful Crystal Martin. She was very nice and knowledgeable about the products. I was wrapped up like a mommy with the body wrap, but I could move my fingers, and she stayed in the room with me.
Crystal said, “I sometimes leave so the client can relax”.
I said, “Oh no, you are not leaving me in here unable to move.” (I would not be a good replacement for Dakota Johnson for the second part of the Grey trilogy.)
She stayed with me the entire time and started my facial. You lie on the table all wrapped up for around 45 minutes then a warm shower is next to wash off the stuff that she applied to your entire body. It was relaxing. NO dead skin on this chick!!

When I left the spa, I headed downtown and then I decided I wanted lunch at the Marriott and changed directions. I had a fried green tomato pimento cheese sandwich with lots of bacon (reminded me of a similar sandwich at Café 212 in Tupelo, MS  http://www.cafe212tupelo.com/) and wonderful green beans with caramelized onions.  I ate outside on the covered patio, and the view was very nice. Florence 003 After lunch and a little relaxation, I headed toward downtown. The weather was warmer on Saturday, so downtown had browsers.

Florence 022 The first place I stumbled upon was the Court Street Market.  There were several things in this building, but the one place that I immediately fell in love with was The Carriage on Court. It was an open floor plan wine/cheese/ flower, etc. shop. It reminded me of New York. 

http://courtstreetmarket.org/vendors/carriage-court/ 

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I found two adorable tops at a boutique called My Favorite Things that I did buy, but I had to remind myself that there is a certain cash limit to being nice to yourself on this special weekend. I met two nice ladies (one from Virginia), and the owner was very helpful.

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Then I walked in to Jewel’s Accessories. This beautiful women with a huge smile greeted me at the door. I told her I wanted full curly blond hair like she has. This stated our warm honest conversation and our friendship. Graham is a delightful person with a huge personality. When the karma shirt is marked down, let me know. My life has been ruled by karma-some good and some bad! http://www.jewellsaccessoriesboutique.com/  Jewel
I wandered around more and found a great book at the Thrift Store down the street.

Then I went to Rosie’s to relax before heading to the hotel. Fortunately for me, Rene’ Anderson was behind the bar. She is so kind and so delightful to talk to that I ordered food and stayed longer than I had planned. She is artistic, creative and has a great thirst for knowledge and strives for a good life for her family.  Her love story made me smile for a long time.

This store has very classy traditional clothes and a cozy shop atmosphere. I loved the painting above the register.

Bill ReidFlorence 030

I finally made it to the hotel, and the check in was easy. There were no hot cookies yet, but they always have a great coffee for you, and I did walk back to the lobby when the cookies were ready. I tried a strawberry cheesecake cookie- It was so good. I was really into “be nice to Wanda” today! As I was checking in, I ran in to a friend from Tupelo celebrating Valentines’ Day with his special valentine.

I walked down to On the Rocks to watch the Ole Miss game. http://florenceontherocks.com/  I ate a great burger then I walked down to FloBama to watch the second half. Someone had told me there was an eighties band playing tonight.  They were correct, but it did not start until 10:30, so I watched the game and talked to this delightful couple who has celebrated Valentine’s Day thirty-two times together, and they still liked each other! We had a good time conversing and then the Velcro Pygmies took the stage! I do not know how to describe the outfits of the band. My first thoughts were a combination of Boy George, Richard Simmons, and Kiss. The music was really good, and they had a big stage presence. http://www.reverbnation.com/venue/flobamamusichall

Yes, I was a little shocked.

Yes, I was a little shocked.

When I Ieft the hotel earlier, I walked to On the Rocks. When I left FloBama, it was freezing, so I called a cab to go back to the hotel.

I enjoyed lunch the next day with a friend at Ricatoni’s.  The lasagna has a delightful red sauce. It was a warm and inviting atmosphere.Postcard of Forks

Afterward lunch, we went to the remnant of an old plantation- the amazing Forks of Cypress. This is a great video of the Forks of Cypress Tour.     https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QeTWJK-SGtw

Beams of Forks of Cypress

Beams of Forks of Cypress

Before the fire..

Before the fire.. 

small replica of FOC - Florence

small replica of FOC

Alex Haley did not live to see Queen published. This was the story of his great-great grandmother and his great- great grandfather’s family and plantation. http://www.alex-haley.com/alex_haley_queen.htm

A friend told me that I reminded him of Frost’s poem and that he knew I had “many miles to go before I sleep”.  I think he knows me well.  I think beignets will be in my future. Until next time…..
Excerpt from “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” by Robert Frost

“The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.”

Cruise Again- Anyone?

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I would Cruise Again! Cruising is fun! No sea sickness at all but a little cotton mouth from the patch. I think it was a very calm cruise which I am sure helped with this. I also slept well except for one night when the bed was doing a little moving.  We had a room that did not have a window, and two ex-teachers accustomed to getting up early were able to sleep late. The schedule was always flexible.

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The food was great: the chocolate dessert was my favorite. The best hamburger was found on this cruise thanks to the “fixings” bar with bacon bits and mushrooms.  The atmosphere was so relaxed. What is there to fret about if you have three meals and a wonderful steward who cleaned your room and brought you breakfast if you put the card out before midnight. All you had to do was circle what you wanted.  We ordered a light breakfast—you know to tide us over until we could go to the real breakfast. Waking up to a knock on the door and then fresh coffee being placed on the counter was a treat!  The last morning we went to the formal breakfast. I would do that every morning on the next cruise. I felt like royalty.

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We had an 8:15 dinner time and after the first night, we found delightful companions to spend our dinner time with each night.  Paige Copeland and Daniel Heidrick – thanks for welcoming us to your table. The menu was enticing every night.Cruise -Jan. 14 046

One night after dinner, we enjoyed two comedians, and there was also a casino on board, a piano bar and several other places to relax.

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When we arrived in Progreso, we walked off the boat and went to the first establishment that had food, cold Coronas and the most important thing– high speed internet. We both needed to work on our online classes and communicate with the world. Adelia got a $20.00 amazing massage, and we enjoyed the three for five Coronas.

I bought a cute blue beach dress and Retina A. The dress was $25.00, and it was $20.00 for two tubes of Retina A. Bargains! The place where I bought the Retina A was named Drugs and Deli which made me laugh.  I guess the contents of the store were not that different from the old drug stores like Brent’s Drugs in the movie The Help. You could buy several different types of antibiotics, Flexeril and Ultram just to name a few. I was afraid to purchase anything like that because I thought this might not make it through Customs.   I knew Customs would not care about my wrinkle helping cream.

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Alcohol was also cheaper, but travelers must pay a tax to bring home alcohol, and carrying the alcohol safely home without breaking it would have been a hassle for me. Not worth it! While walking through Customs, potential customers were given free Tequila shots to promote the product. Beautiful and reasonably priced gold and silver jewelry was abundant. I wish I had purchased some jewelry. Adelia told me to buy souvenirs in Progreso because they were cheaper. She was correct! Some people were told to wait until they were in port in Cozumel. My cruise expert knew where was best to shop.Cruise -Jan. 14 032

Our next stop was Cozumel. We found the Three Amigos restaurant after we departed. Good food, great view and high speed wireless internet – a winning trio of offerings. After we finished working and returned our laptops to our room, we began the search for a free beach.  After taking directions from several people and walking a long way, we faced the fact that there are no free beaches in Cozumel. At this time it was around lunch, and we had to board at 3:00, so paying $40.00 for beach privileges was not a wise investment.  Adelia got another massage and then we shopped and boarded the ship.

The next day we were at sea all day, and we enjoyed the pool. There was always something going on at the pool: Hairy Chest Contest, ice sculptures, music, etc.

The day of departure there is choice of whether to put your luggage out or carry it yourself. We carried our luggage and that made it easier to depart quickly.

We rode a bus back to the airport for our 4:00 flight. Our new friend Jennifer ate lunch with us before boarding her plane back to Oklahoma. Jennifer is a house mother for a fraternity and a director at Upward Bound. She is an amazing young lady that I hope to see again soon. Adelia is a great travel companion, and I am thankful that she invited me to accompany her on this trip!

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I would cruise again, but I will always hope and pray for calm waters before each voyage!

BV - cartoon

First Cruise: Face Your Fears

Cruise - NassauCreative Commons License faungg’s photo via Compfight

My first Carnival cruise will be taking place soon. There are several reasons that I am a virgin cruiser: job and fear of being seasick again. The most important reason is because of my jobs. For the last eight years, I have needed internet access 24/7, but for the next ten weeks, I do not need internet access for every waking moment.

Another reason was my deep sea fishing experience twenty years ago and my para sailing adventure. There are some experiences that you never forget. Daddy thought it would be a great idea for me to go deep sea fishing with the boys, so I did. We arose at 6:00 that morning, and we hit Waffle House with a vengeance. After fried everything, we boarded the boat.

At first it was fun, I actually caught the first fish. It was a small thing, but I was quite pleased then the nausea began. After about thirty minutes, I was hanging over the side of the boat. It is safe to say that I did not want to eat at Waffle House or crave eggs and bacon for a long time.

Finally, I was able to go down in the gallows to lie down. I went to sleep and I woke up feeling better. I walked up to the steps and then I saw myself. I was literally green from the neck up –not a bright green but a pale thick green.   Then I followed Daddy’s advice and ate a few crackers and drank some soda. BIG MISTAKE! I was back hanging over the side of the boat again.

When the trip was coming to a close and we were heading in to the marina, as soon as I saw a land form and focused only on looking at the land, I immediately started feeling better.

Parasailing @ SaipanCreative Commons License

Hajime NAKANO via Compfight

The para-sailing adventure was not as traumatic as the fishing experience, but as the boat was hitting the waves, and I was going up and down in the sky like a yo-yo, I started to feel that same sick feeling as if someone is taking your stomach and throwing it around like a Frisbee.

I have decided to tackle my fear of seasickness and arm myself with a patch, Dramamine, and Phenergan. Hopefully the patch will be all I need, but just in case, I will have the other two meds to make me feel better.

I am going cruising, and I am totally clueless about what is allowed and what time you do everything, but Adelia is a seasoned veteran, and she will direct me and assist me. We travel well together, so I am ready for the adventure to begin later in the month. I will share my trip with my friends.

 Restaurant Recommendations from Recent Adventures

New Year’s Trip to Destin
790 on the Gulf Restaurant was amazing!
http://www.eatmoregumbo.com/
http://www.eatmoregumbo.com/sunday_brunch

View from the inside of 790 on the Gulf

View from the inside of 790 on the Gulf

 

View from the outside

View from the outside

 

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http://www.synergyorganiccafefwb.com/

Synergy is an all organic cafe and juice bar that focuses on using real whole foods from our local and regional farmers. The Cafe is owned by longtime Locals Amy Likins and Christian Echele who have been making wonderful healthy food on the Emerald Coast together for 13 years. Amy has a degree in Holistic Nutrition and Christian is a classically trained chef- combined they make an amazing team to bring you the freshest, best taking and good for you combinations- you will be eating healthier and loving it before you know it!

At Synergy we strive to help others find a path to health and well being by bringing about a greater sense of awareness and wholeness to all that we do. We believe the secret to a life of health and well-being is found in taking a Synergistic or Holistic approach to life with a healthy Organic Whole Foods based diet, daily exercise, and a positive mental and emotional constitution. Come have a seat at the bar and watch as our amazingly talented team create fresh masterpieces right in front of you. Every time you come into the cafe is an opportunity to learn how to make positive healthy choices for yourself and your families’ diet and lifestyle. (copied from the public website)

JB’s
Holly Springs, MS, on the square
Great service! The salmon and sweet baked potato were amazing. There was also a great salad bar with spinach—thank you!
http://jbsfamily.com/

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Chase your dreams….they will not chase you!

Rebel Football Love

hotty toddy

LyceumOle MissSEC Football Team love is hard to describe. It is a feeling, an emotion that is hard to explain if you are not a southerner with a team.  Football in the south is an institution that is cherished and loved by many people. I have no comprehension or tolerance for people that changes teams according to the team’s record or their affiliation with people.  I was an Ole Miss Rebel  fan in ’94 and 2004 when we were 4-7, and I will always be a fan.

For my family and most of the Ole Miss family, football means tailgating at all home games.  We started out tailgating in the circle around thirty-five years ago when it was just us and a few other people. We had a card table, a few chairs and KFC. When my girls were old enough to sit through a ballgame, they climbed the magnolia tree and played in the Circle before the game and then they were introduced to Ole Miss Football.

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I have no comprehension or tolerance for people that changes teams according to the team’s record or their affiliation with certain people.  I was a fan in ’94 and 2004 when we were 4-7, and I am a fan in 2014; I will always be a fan.Eli

Football tailgating preparation begins at least a week in advance. Deciding departure time on game day and coordinating food selection and arrival times of all parties is like coordinating a party or social event. Our location has changed due to the new parking restraints, but we have settled in at our new location. It is very convenient for Daddy and Jane, Donna and John, and Peg and Ralph to be able to back the vehicles up and unload.

We pick our crew up from wherever they can park and bring them to the tailgate.

We pick our crew up from wherever they can park and bring them to the tailgate.

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We have an intricate tailgating plan.  Daddy and Jane bring the tents, grill, chairs, food and lots of other stuff. Whoever gets there at the same time Daddy does helps with the tent. Tyler will ride down and coordinate when possible.

The Hills bring the tv and the satellite dish, the heater, food, the sides of the tents and lots of other stuff. I bring two dishes and my Cranberry Dicey Gold which is a very good mixture guaranteed to enhance your pre-game experience.  (Thank you, Michael Murphy and the Jake Owen Gold Tour for giving me the opportunity to concoct this drink.) My bring list decreased when I had to start parking at the Wesley House.   All of the other parties involved bring food and whatever else they want to bring.  It is like a family reunion every home game.  We look forward to the fellowship, laughter, and stories.2013 008

 

One interesting man who loves Ole Miss Football and was featured in a video is Mr. Glenn.  He tailgates with us for the home games, and he dislikes LSU like no one I have ever met. (It is true that many Rebels had rather beat LSU than anyone else on the schedule.)   You can count on him to bring fried chicken every week, and he will surprise you. He had champagne and cigars for us after our last home game.   He also danced after the Alabama win, but I cannot find the video on ESPN.10-28-14 camera 0192013 855

I miss this group of people after the last home game, but God willing, we will all be back next fall to spend time together and say, “Hotty Toddy”.hotty toddy

All fall  trips are scheduled for me around the Ole Miss Football off weekends and away weekends. The departure and arrival of trips planned for the fall must accommodate all game times of parties involved in the trip.  While traveling with a State fan (Lori) or a Bama fan (Michelle), game times must be taken in to account of all teams and a place chosen in said town to watch all games. You must watch and cheer your team on to victory if at all possible. I do feel that Bo could hear me this season say which receiver was open and the linebackers could hear me yell- “Stop him.”  Running toward the tv for away games also helps everyone on the team run a little faster.  We understand the importance of supporting our team even if it is just viewing the game at home.

Weddings should not be scheduled in the fall. I do not understand anyone who gets married during football season. Jordan and I watched one game on our phones with the volume down waiting on the bridal march.

Enjoy your bowl game and remember that many teams are at home wishing they were playing in a bowl game, so cheer for your team and be thankful for their hard work that made a bowl game possible for your team.Vince quote # 1Laquon

 

Of Parties, Prose and Football
 http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/16/travel/faulkner-and-football-in-oxford-miss.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Katy Perry gave the Ole Miss mascot the best hug of his life.    http://usat.ly/1rbMkfe

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