Thursday, April 16, 2015

Day 4 of our trip

Tuesday morning everyone was up early and ready for their adventure jammed packed day. The Extreme Zipline Adventure! I was looking up excursions months before our trip and this excursion looked awesome we HAD to do it!  I told my doctor about this excursion and she said I should be able to do anything I could do before I was pregnant and that I should go for it. This excursion restricted expecting mothers, so I called trying to get special permission. I Tried making it sound like I'm this granola fit pregnant chick that can handle whatever is dished out but was still given a "no". Exaggerating never gets you anywhere, lesson learned. So I asked again once we got there and the people acted like I was crazy if I thought they would let me go on this one, I considered wearing a moo moo dress and acting like I wasn't pregnant but thought better of it in the end. 
 They wouldn't allow camera's past a certain point and the cost of buying the pictures they took were more than the excursion itself so I'll just have to write what was in this excursion and you can use your imagination for the rest (replace our faces with the faces from the website here).

 More is more fun when it comes to adventure, and this tour offers the most activities packed into one fun-filled day of adventure. Enjoy thrilling rides on a series of zip lines, including Mexico's longest and fastest, an exhilarating off road ride in a Polaris® UTV and much, much more.
Located in a protected tropical forest just outside of Puerto Vallarta, you will zip through a stunning treetop canopy on a series of thrilling zip lines - include Mexico's longest and fastest zip line at over 1,200 meters (nearly 4,000 feet) in length and reaching speeds of up to 100 kph (or 60 mph)!
In addition to exploring the jungle canopy from the zip lines, you'll also experience many other exciting activities.  Like two amazing rappels off of elevated treetop platforms, a wobbly climb up the 15-meter (50 ft) high Crazy Ladder, fun ride on the Tarzan Swings, plus suspended walkways and hanging bridges.  This tour provides endless excitement.
Hop into some of the coolest vehicles around, Polaris RZR UTVs, and test your off road driving skills as you explore the jungle floor on our specially designed off road course.  Sit side-by-side having a blast as you drop down steep grades, cross rocky river beds, climb up hills and more. 
What sounds better, after crossing the jungle in the Mexico sun, than a refreshing dip in cool water?  How about a refreshing dip that also includes a fun and thrilling hillside waterslide?  You'll twist and turn as you slide down the hill coming to a splashing stop before continuing your adventure.
Parts of this excursion you could skip because they were pretty challenging but EVERYONE in our family was able to complete it all. The obstacle course up in the trees sounded intense. They sounded like they had such a blast! I'll just have to live vicariously through their descriptions of their jammed packed adventure. 
Here are the pictures Taylor was able to take on the trip up the jungle. 

The prison

When they came home they were pooped.
While they were gone my mom and I went on a walk on the beach, had a delicious big breakfast, and then went shopping.
We took the bus and walked a few blocks to the flea market. 

Downtown these apartments are just stacked on top of each other.  
The flea market was a maze of shops. I would get lost walking around the place. So the whole haggling business, getting a sweet deal, I thought I would be all about this type of shopping but I really wasn't. I appreciate a good deal as much as any other person, I get a high off of it, I LOVE getting a good deal. Walking around all the vendors were trying to get me to buy something, to look in their shop, just offer a price, etc. I felt like if I talked them down in price I was taking food off their table or something and I felt so bad not buying things in their shops and just walking by. I've done the whole shopping/bartering thing in Mexico before but I've just come to the conclusion that it's not my favorite. 
Also I have the hardest time making a choice on what I want to get and I know it would have driven the guys crazy, I am so indecisive! My mom is so sweet and was willing to do the bartering for me. I was so bad at it I kept apologizing to the people selling and my mom had to tell me, "Nicole, you have to stop saying your sorry". You know when my mom says that, I'm bad. I picked out some knit swim suit covers, bracelets, and earrings for the girls, these animal pens for all the kids, a cool wooden crocodile, and a hat for Kesler. 
The best part of shopping was definitely the company. My mom and I were having so much fun, I just love talking with her. 
We went along the boardwalk shops and looked at all the fun things along the beach. It was such a fun day!

That night Kent and Kathleen got everyone dinner. They bought tamales from this lady that makes them everyday, they were delicious. 
I don't know which night it was but I think it was this night where after the sunset that night we turned up the music on our deck and just danced. I think my grandparents think  were crazy, we get so silly when were together! I didn't get any pictures, we got video where we did a Michael Jackson dance off but I still don't know how to upload videos.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Monday in Puerto Vallarta

 On the docket for Monday - Marietas Eco Discovery!
We took a bus down to the marina to go on our first excursion. They had this huge seal out there that you could take a picture with, at first I thought he was a big guy in a costume but he was the real deal. I didn't realize how big seals are and this ones name was "Flash". As I went up to get our picture with him it became apparent why his name was Flash, he knew how to work the camera. He had me stand right next to him and his little flippers went around me and right before they took the picture he stuck his tongue out like he was giving me a big wet kiss.
Then we got on our boat and were off to the Island Marietas!
Next to a pirate ship.

 It was still a little cold in the morning so Travis was keeping me warm in his towel.
 Ready to play!

We had a breakfast on the boat and were just messing around. Once we got to the island we got our lifejackets, and fins on and swam out to the "hidden beach". We got a little boat tour of the island then we got to go snorkeling, kayaking, and paddle boarding. 

Okay my husbands got MOVES! He did a head stand on his board... and I thought I was pretty cool just getting up on my legs and standing on mine.

We just played around, danced, had virgin pina coladas and daiquiris, and lunch.

I love when Kent and Kathleen start busting out dance moves! I got Travis to get up with me and dance too. Travis said he wouldn't mind taking dance lessons together, something fun like fast country swing that sounds so fun to me!
 The staff doing their lip syncing and dancing.

We get a little crazy sometimes, all in the name of fun and making memories. There was this group of guys and girls from Seattle who commented to us, "Hey the tequila's not even out yet". I said, "Who needs that stuff to party!"Taylor has commented before, "Oh man, can you imagine what our family would be like if we drank" (or something to that effect). Pretty much, we like to have fun and act like fools, I've never really understood the necessity of alcohol to  make that happen. Not that were always crazy but we tend to feed off each other's energy especially when we're on VACATION!
"You're on VACATION!" 
(just something we would say - quoting this guy who said that on our cruise all the time).
 One picture taken with the phone one with my camera, which picture do you like more I couldn't decide?

After getting home we got cleaned up and my parents took us all out to eat at the best Mexican restaurant EVER, PIPI'S (at least Travis and I were thoroughly convinced it was the best)!

So they actually say it this way Pee-Pee's but I just couldn't call it that so I liked to call it "PePe's (llike Pey-Pey's). I mean seriously who calls a great restaurant Pee-pee's, it's just not right.
It was a colorful place with a live mariachi band playing around us, huge virgin margaritas and daiquiris in fancy glasses, and the greatest service. Travis's dish was my FAVORITE, he got this humongous shrimp burrito loaded with yummy white sauce and shrimp. I got the shrimp fajitas which were amazing too! And leftovers, yeah! Thank you so much mom and dad, it was DELICIOUS!!!

Then we walked down the boardwalk. they had all these fun things set up that were fun look at and right as the sun was setting they had these five guys on the highest pole jump off the pole with a rope harness around them and swing around while other guys were playing music. It was crazy! 

That pretty much wrapped up another amazing day!

Puerto Vallarta, Saturday and Sunday

I am use to being the one in the family who is always taking the pictures but it's been awesome because Taylor was taking pictures a ton too! He has been getting more into taking pictures lately, and it's been great. So a lot of the pictures from this trip are his too, most of the good ones!

We were up and at the airport before the sun was up and flying down to Phoenix on a connecting flight to Puerto Vallarta (landed around 9 am). After getting to our next airline terminal we met up with Taylor and were off again. 
It's fun getting to talk to people your sitting next to, on our first flight Travis and talked to a man from France who was working here in the states for a couple years so he and his family were taking advantage of being in the states and seeing places all over the country. They just spent the week in Zions National park and love it here. I was a little surprised because I'd heard Europeans (especially the french) don't particularly like Americans. He was funny he said "not really, in general French people don't particularly like anyone. They just ignore each other and go about their business." He seemed to love everything about our country, even the people. He asked how I liked Utah because he thought the mountains were so beautiful here. I said I loved it and he said his company has an office in Salt Lake and he's looking into possibly coming over here for his next assignment if they let him come back to the states(He works in St. Louis Missouri right now for a health insurance company).
Travis and I weren't able to sit by each other on the next flight and I sat in between a couple who lives in northern Arizona. She is a social worker and he is a professor at a community college. It was kind of funny being sandwiched in between them because they were talking across me when I first sat down, then for the rest of the flight they took turns talking to me. They were so nice and I especially liked Jane. She was sweet and when she found out I was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints I was a little hesitant to see her reaction because they were more liberal and talked about needing to get away from Arizona with all its conservatives, but I was happy to hear she knew a couple members who seemed nice and didn't have a negative opinion about members. 
We talked to a family from Minnesota that went on a couple of the same excursions, a mother and Daughter from New Jersey, and other people. It's just so great getting to talk to people from all over. 
Once we got off the plane Johnny and Jess were there waiting for us.It was around 1 pm when we got there so once we saw the beautiful condo's we would be staying in we went straight to the grocery store to stock up on food for the week. The fruit was INCREDIBLE! I ate mangos every day and we had avacados and guacamole with everything, AHHHH I LOVE THAT STUFF!!!

 Our ocean front condo.

The resort was big and had lots of pools and tons and tons of palm trees everywhere, Travis was worried that a coconut was going to fall on someone's head.

Right outside our rooms

The Condominiums we were staying in were called, "Los Tules".

We were in two different condominiums and had most of our meals together in this condo. Everyone had their own rooms and bathrooms in our condo (we had my parents, the newlyweds Leslie and Mickell, and me and Trav). In the other condo were my grandparents, Kent and Kathleen, Johnny and Jess, and Tay. 

Beautiful sunsets, I think we went on the beach every night to watch the sunset.

Johnny just jumped straight in the ocean with everything on and Taylor shortly joined him and they were making us all laugh.

The next morning I went on a walk down the beach with my parents, something I did every morning I could.

They had people getting massages during the sunrises and sunsets ever day out there on the beach.

We had fresh fruit smoothies every morning, and this morning eggs, guacamole and fresh baked break from the bakery too.
Then we were off to church, it was all in Spanish but it was really great getting to be there together and feel the spirit. Singing the hymns in Spanish was really cool too, I felt so bilingual... or rather Gringo ;) it was fun!
It was a simple building, all white on the inside and more humble than ours back home (their hymn books were really worn), and the people were so incredibly nice and everyone just smiled at us (a few could speak English and talked to us).

The rest of the day we spent relaxing, enjoying the scenery, and eating. We had the best discussions especially when we talked about a great book Travis is reading, "Shaking Faith Syndrome". The book has really helped him understand people who struggle in the church or leave the church and appreciate the different journey's people take in life, even if it doesn't bring them back to the church. It's a lot more than that, it's very well written and I've loved talking to him about what he's read. Sorry DETOUR, back to the events of our fantastic day!
 I feel like those really great conversations and discussions bring us closer together and we connect on a deeper level, as a couple and as a whole family when we just sit down and have great talks, I just love it. 

I love just pointing the camera at Taylor and he'll just start to do something that makes me laugh.

We were all discussing which excursions we would do for the rest of the week and as I was standing there I wanted to get a little sun on the back of my legs, so I had this interesting stance and Taylor came up to me and started mimicking me and what I looked like.

My dad took off his shirt to show us how his physique looked just like Taylor's.

I'm so crazy about my fun family!!!

That night we did a little hot tubing and it wasn't too hot for me, it was perfect! 

Great relaxing weekend, this trip was the perfect combination of relaxation and jam packed fun!