Last week I went missing from my blog while I was on a vacay with my hubby where we renewed our wedding vows with friends. Here are a handful of photos…the ones I could share at least! LOL Renewing our vows in Vegas, with Elvis officiating was a hoot but, it also was a reminder about how grateful we are to have been married 11 years.
Here’s a sequence of three pics trying this new wordpress gallery “circle” feature for the first time…it looks kind’ve cool! I just realized when you use the gallery feature, the camera properties are listed when you click on each photo, which I appreciate!
So, this is my husband “trying” to cartwheel with my daughter. LOL Actually, he did a decent job! Grownups: if you haven’t cartwheeled in awhile, you should try it. It’s fun but, harder than it looks!
For our annual ski trip to Whistler, B.C. from Port Angeles we took the “leisurely” route via two ferries: Blackball Coho ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria, then an hour drive up to Nanaimo to catch the ferry to Horseshoe Bay. For our two families, packed into our SUV with rocket on top, it was way more fun driving less and getting out of the car and relaxing more. Only 2 hours sitting in the car versus 5-6 hours if we drove via Bellingham. The option to eat on the ferry is fun too, whether you do the buffet with big vistas, or hit the cafe’ for a salmon burger (my hubby’s fav), soft-serve ice cream (the girls choice), or a simple steamy latte’ (yup, for ME!) We were fortunate enough to get a gorgeous day to ride the Horseshoe Bay ferry so the views and fresh air from the sun deck were amazing, giving us all a chance to stretch our legs and laugh at the girls trying to wield their long hair in the wind. Even before arriving at Whistler, just riding the ferries gave us a fun start to our vacation!!
Hiking Volcan Arenal here in Costa Rica was an amazing geological, wildlife, and flora experience. And, it was just plain fun, for our two families who enjoyed this kid-friendly hike through the jungle to the viewpoint (“mirador”) of the volcano. We did the recommended loop trail and saw toucans, and heard numerous bird songs. The sights and sounds created nature’s scavenger hunt for the kids, distracting from the physical challenge from the heat and slight incline at the top.
We were hiking here on our own, with our Costa Rican friends, which was wonderful but, if I had a chance to do it again I’d love to go with a local bird expert. I envied the groups accompanied by local guides offering their knowledge of the flora and fauna. Within close proximity of one group we benefitted from a guide pointing out an anteater and our first toucans. One of our goals was to see toucans (my daughter’s number one wish actually) so we were all stoked to see several families of colorful toucans, with their big bills throughout our hike. We saw at least 10 toucans and heard even more. That alone totally made the trip! We didn’t see monkeys during this hike but, we heard them and laughed when they threw fruit down at us. (On a previous trip down the Sarapiqui River we saw many howler monkeys…that will be in another post.) And, the flora and fauna itself was amazing. We started the hike on the dry side, appreciating the shade of tall grasses flanking each side of our trail, then entered the lush jungle with hanging and climbing vines, large ceiba trees, tree ferns, and many prehistoric-looking plants. It was incredible.
It was quite a drive from San Jose which our friends generously offered to take us on this fun day trip. But, if we were on our own we’d probably stay in La Fortuna or another nearby village to explore the volcano a bit more and just be closer to this beautiful area. Click on this link for more information about Arenal Volcano National Park. And, as I mentioned in my previous post, there are no food options once you enter the park so here’s my restaurant recommendation in La Fortuna, just outside the park..