Thursday, July 19, 2007

Lakeside Amusement Park

We had a wonderful time at Lakeside Amusement Park this Wednesday, July 18th 2007.

Marcella and Todd watching the rides.
Todd's family all met at Lakeside Amusement park for an evening of fun! Olivia, Emily and Audrey had earned free passes to the small amusement park through the local library's summer reading program. We started out with a picnic dinner and then had fun riding the kiddie rides first.
Emily and Audrey on their first ride, a small roller coaster.
Tori and Payton
Olivia and Dylan
Look at them go! This was one of their favorite rides.
Marcella did not want to go on the rides, although, she loved the carousel. But she loved watching the kids and looking at all the lights, once it was dark.

The Frog Hopper was probably the 2nd favorite of the kiddie rides. It would take the kids up and then bounce them down.
Olivia was so funny the first time she rode it. Her eyes were as big as saucers and her mouth made a big O! Thanks to positive peer pressure, she rode it a second time and then loved it!
Payton and Audrey were riding buddies the night.
Olivia and Emily cheesing it on the lady bugs.
Once the girls were comfortable on the kiddie rides, we moved onto some of the bigger ones. Todd and I were shocked that Emily and Audrey wanted to ride one of the bigger roller coasters. And we were blown away that it became their favorite! Laura was nice enough to watch Marcella a lot of the night. Marcella even walked Laura back to the carousel and then pointed to it and said "Ease!!". That's how she says please and of course it worked its magic and Laura took her on another ride.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Todd's family had a family reunion in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico this past June. All of seven out of eight children were able to come. And the only reason why number eight wasn't there was because he's serving a mission in Houston, Texas right now. Todd and I decided not to bring our girls with us. With the price of tickets PLUS needing to purchase pass ports for everyone, it was cheaper to fly Ashley to baby sit for the week. Plus, it was SO nice to just have the two of us together. (above is a picture of one of the pools at the hotel. Sooo if you look carefully, you can see the ocean at the horizon)
One of the first nights in Puerto the hotel put on a Fiesta. They had everything decorated and served lots of good Mexican food.
Todd's parents Scott and Maxine
Todd's sister Deb and her husband Nate
Todd's brother Ian and his family Preston, Dylan, Cassie, Payton, and Tori
Chad, Jeri, Mckindry, and Easlyn
Todd and I

Todd's brother Josh and his wife Kristi
Todd's sister Brittany, her husband JT and Austin

Todd and I took the hotel Kayak to the ocean! It was pretty fun bouncing in the surf, but once we were in the open, calm water, it was a little lame. When we paddled back in, we totally hit a wave side ways and rolled right over!
The closest town to our hotel was Bucerias. We would usually take a taxi into town and walk around to shop and then get something to eat.
Monday we ate here, a restaurant that was right off the beach. The food was pretty good, the limonade great, and the view fabulous.

After we ate, Todd and I decided to walk back to the hotel. It took about 30 minutes and was so beautiful with the sun setting.

Tuesday a group of us went to the jungle to ride the zip lines! Above is a picture of the jungle the zip lines were. It was a long bus ride and jeep ride, but it was worth it!
Josh, JT, Todd, Ian, Cassie, Brittany and I. This is after the zip line adventure. It was sooo much fun. But it was really warm and humid. We had to hike from one zip line to the next. All of us were sweaty, but Todd showed it best of all.
Does this helicopter look familiar to anyone? Right where we rode the zip lines is where the movie Predator was filmed!
More beautiful scenery in the jungle. Right next to this waterfall was a restaurant called Paradise.
Todd and I nice and sweaty.

That night we showered up and headed into Bucerias. We ate at a little Tacaria with Chad's family. After dinner we met up with the rest of the family and ordered Pina Coladas and Strawberry Dacaris.

The sun sets are so pretty on the beach.
Thursday another group of people got up early and took an hour and 15 minute boat ride to the Marietta islands. There we snorkeled. I had never been snorkeling before, but I just love it now! It was a little unnerving putting my face in the water and trusting the gear, but I quickly got used to it and had a blast hunting for fish. I've been told that the snorkeling wasn't all that great here, but I really don't have anything to compare it too. The fish were beautiful, and we saw a HUGE eel but I guess the water was a little murky. Oh, I also got my very first jelly fish sting. It was just a tiny jelly fish, so it didn't hurt very much.

Todd and I waiting to board the boat.
Dylan and Preston enjoying the boat ride.
Just as we were all boarding our boat, this old fashions Pirate ship pulled out of the dock.
Here's our boat from the beach.
After snorkeling, our boat took us to a private beach. It was very pretty and the sand was very fine.

Our private beach for about an hour.
Josh, Dylan, Ian, Maxine, Preston in the water and Laura
Kristi and her sister Marcy
Laura had fun burying Preston in the sand.
Todd and I hiding in the shade for a little while. I'm proud to say the Todd and I didn't get burnt the whole week. Thanks to Coppertone 50 spf and shade trees, or should I say palms.

The sun setting and the moon coming out just behind the palms.
Todd and I lounging by the pool one evening after snorkeling.

Our last evening in Mexico we caught taxis into the town of Puerto Vallarta. We walked around and did a little more shopping. Then we ate and the best restaurant called Pipi's! It was by far the best food we ate all week and they had the best limonade and drinks.
Our Pipi's tables.

Todd catching a breeze off the ocean.

This is just out side the restaurant. We thought it was pretty the way the street goes right into the hill.
We had such a wonderful time in Mexico. It was fun and relaxing all at the same time. We're looking forward to doing it again, hopefully in 4 years!!