Thursday, September 19, 2013

Cha Cha Changes

Whew! It has been a crazy few weeks. So much has been going on and yes, there have been a lot of changes. I accepted a position as a training analyst at Royal Caribbean Cruise Line. I am so excited about this opportunity! I loved my job at Acquinity Interactive, but the commute wore on me. My job there taught me so much about how to be a better trainer. I had an amazing mentor and great support there. I will really miss it! Now I get to experience a whole new kind of company and work. I am excited and scared at the same time. I just feel really blessed to have this opportunity to work for a great company and have this opportunity to work closer to home.

Derek and I also had the chance to take a little break and go on a quick trip with our good friends Caitlin and Andrew Peterson. We all went to college together and got married within a month of each other. They are such great friends, I am so glad we made the time to do this with them! I will be post overloading that trip soon :)

So I guess that about sums up the last few weeks. Doesn't seem like much when I write it out but I have felt like a lot has changes. I am really excited about the future and I just keep feeling so lucky to have the opportunities I have been given. 

Peterson/Estes Cruise: Day 1 and Day 2

What a week! We had the opportunity to go on an awesome Caribbean cruise with our good friends the Petersons. It was the perfect week of relaxing and having adventures. The night before we left we picked up Andrew and Caitlin at the airport in Fort Lauderdale. We came back to Miami and drove around the city to show them where we live. Saturday we woke up and finished packing before heading off to the airport. Jacki was awesome to take us to the port and get us on our way. We checked in pretty easily and before we knew it, we were on the boat! Our room assignment was perfect (we were on the main deck) and we had the chance to watch as we left Miami. After that, the excessive eating began! I don't think I have ever eaten as much as I did this last week and it was awesome!

Leavin' MIA

Goodbye Miami!

The next day we had a day at sea so we got to just relax and lay out. I got to read and enjoy the pool with Caitlin while Derek and Andrew played basketball. Derek won the free throw contest and Andrew won the 3 point contest. We love our athletic husbands! That night we had our first formal night so we got to get all dressed up and took some pictures on the deck. We played "Screw Your Neighbor", the card game, every night. It took me a few days to learn how to play but we all finally got the hang of it. Caitlin was definitely the overall champ but we all had our turn to win. Having a day at sea was the perfect way to start the trip and really relax. 

The girls

Happy vacationers

The whole crew

The U and The U (we know which one is better)

Formal Night

Peterson/Estes Cruise: Day 3

Day 3 lead us to Cozumel Mexico. We decided to go to a local ruin called Tulum. We got to walk around Cozumel in the morning and see a little bit of the city, which turned out to be really beautiful and cool. Andrew did a great job at researching all of our excursions and so we headed to the ferry to take us to the mainland where we caught a cab to take us to Tulum. I don't know if any of you have driven in Mexico, but man they are crazy drivers! We had some rain when we docked but luckily we drove out of it pretty quickly.

Getting off the boat early

View from Cozumel

Walking the streets of Cozumel

Just learning while we vacation

Tulum was gorgeous. The city is located on a mountain right on the coast so the views were to die for. I always enjoy learning a little while I relax so it was cool to be able to read all of the signs and see a part of history. 

 Walking into the city

The main part of the ruins

One of the ocean views

All of us

After we walked around the ruins, and sweated like crazy!, we walked down to the beach. That was by far the coolest part of the day. You could literally go swimming right at the ruins. The water was crystal clear and perfect temperature... it was incredible. You couldn't help but stop and just admire how beautiful everything was. 

The beach

The ruins in the background


Lovin life

We had to get a toes in the sand pic

After we thoroughly enjoyed the beach, we took a cab back to Playa and took the ferry to Cozumel. We even got some authentic tacos along the way (sooo good!). We made it back with minutes to spare, but it was absolutely worth it. 

Peterson/Estes Cruise: Day 4

Day 4 took us to Belize. We docked in the capital and we met up with our tour guide, Junior who was taking us cave tubing. He drove us about an hour outside of the capital to the rainforest. In the rainforest, there are rivers that run through the mountains in these caves. Junior was an amazing guide. He grew up in this rainforest and has been guiding tours there most of his life. We had a thirty minute hike to the top of the river where we would jump in. On the way, he showed us which plants you could eat (which we ate), how to eat termites (which we did) and which plants to stay away from. We saw lots of bats, bugs and even saw a little rainforest rain storm along the way. Once we got to the top, we jumped into the river and hopped in our tubes.

Andrew wanted a picture with Derek and I 

It was so bright!

The besties chatting

We are ready to tube!

They were really excited :)

The tennis shoe and swimsuit look is very in this season

Andrew back flipped off the rock 

We were all hooked together and Junior steered us through the river. He explained the architecture of the area and told us some stories of the Mayan people who lived there. I really feel tiny next to all of the nature around me. It made me so grateful that I have a Heavenly Father who created such an amazing planet. I am so glad I got to see more of it this week! After we tubed the river, we went back to Junior's house and his sister's cooked us an amazing lunch. We all chowed down. Belize was amazing and I am so glad we got to see this side of it!

Junior our tour guide teaching how to eat plants

Loading up

A waterfall inside the cave

Exiting a cave

Entering a cave

The jungle of Belize

Hooked up and ready to see the world

Peterson/Estes Cruise: Day 5

Day 5 took us to Honduras. We were actually on an island called Isla Roaton off the coast of Honduras. It is pretty much a jungle with some beaches a long the way. In Honduras we got to go zip lining, play with monkeys and then go to the beach. It was a busy day! If you know me at all, then you know I am a little hesitant about heights... like really hesitant. So I was scared that the zip lining wouldn't be fun because I was scared the whole time. But I was happy when I found it really fun and not nearly as scary as I thought. They guides hooked up secure at each line and they all went first. I think they did that just to make sure you saw it was safe. I really enjoyed it and only screamed like I was dying twice :)

At the port and ready to go

Hooked up for the zip line

One of the views from the zip line

After the zip line we got to go to another area of the facility where they had trained monkeys and native animals to show us. I am not going to lie, the monkeys were so cool! I was a little scared because they seemed to like my hair, but they were so cute! We also got to see some birds, deer, and some rodents. 

After we finished up with the animals, we headed over to a local beach where we got to relax, swim and nap on the beach. Another perfect day was in the books.