Sunday, January 31, 2010

Snow Training?

I've decided today that playing in the snow and ice TOTALLY counts as cross training.

I've loved it that several people who are used to these kinds of winter conditions suggested that I go for a run. I might have considered it if the snow had stayed, well... snow. Snow did fall all day yesterday, but by the time we had 6-7 inches (!!!!!unheard of in these parts!!!!!) the falling precipitation had turned to ice. When I ventured out into the beautiful winter wonderland of my neighborhood, I found that everything was just a solid sheet of ice. I was doing good to walk on it.

As in, I could have gone ice skating on my driveway.

This was going to be fun, to say the very least.

Now I won't lie... since it so rarely snows in middle Tennessee, there's a small part of me that reverts back to being a kid when it does happen. I found myself paying attention to the school closings, even though it's been years since I was in the county schools.

I remembered this one time when I was in middle school and we had enough snow that we were out for a week! I'm not sure why, but I have this vivid memory of playing Yoshi's Island on my Super NES... and I had just reached the world where some of the segments were set in the snow. I can remember playing through it and watching the real snow coming down outside.

I'm not going to lie. I busted out that game and played it for a while last night.

Even though I was excited and think that it's beautiful, I'm not going to lie about something else... I was a little disappointed it had to come when it did. See, I had plans to see that boy I keep casually mentioning here and there. Since we both were born and raised around here, neither of us feel good about driving far in this kind of stuff... It's not the end of the world since we'll see each other in a few days, but it still kind of sucks (you know how it goes when it's the beginning and it's new and all that jazz.) We settled for a fun phone date instead, which ended up being another reminder of how much I enjoy just talking to this man.

After spending all day inside yesterday, I was eager to get out today and play.

Play I did.

The solid sheet of ice wasn't great for driving, but it was perfect for sitting down on a plastic disc and flying down the hills. I had a blast! I felt like SUCH a kid and didn't even care that I am almost 27 and was totally acting like one.

Don't judge me for how large I look in the above photo. I REALLY hate being cold, and I'm not even going to detail how much clothing I had on.
I totally wore myself out. Walking all over the neighborhood to try out all the hills is tiring enough, but doing it on ice? Even harder. As I found good hills, I OF COURSE had to give them several good runs before moving on... so I climbed a lot of the hills extra times. I definitely am counting this as a workout.
While sliding down icy hills is supper fun - believe me, you go SO super fast - it's also a little rough. I have a feeling my bottom will be bruised, but this isn't going to stop me from doing it some more tomorrow.
My parents decided to venture out to dinner, so I opted to join them. As much as I enjoyed my dinner of Toaster Streudels last night, Chili's sounded much better.
Last night, everything shut down. Tonight? Things were open again, and there were a surprising number of folks who were crazy enough to brave the icy roads for southwestern tacos and molten chocolate cakes. I only hope they passed on the 2-for-1 margaritas tonight.
It's funny... sometimes I do hang around the house for a couple of days without really going anywhere and it's fine, but I'm feeling restless. I think it's totally different when you're stuck around the house and just can't go anywhere you want.
I shot some videos WHILE going down the hills today, so stay tuned for those and a few more awesome snow pictures soon.
As for those of you in the great white north, stop laughing. I know this is nothing to you, but to us southerners it's a big deal! Seriously, there has been nothing on the local news except for stuff about this snow storm. If anything else important is happening outside of our snowy bubble, I haven't heard about it!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Eating my Words

It hasn't happened since 2003... but we're actually getting a decent snow. I hardly believe it myself.

Tucker has been mesmerized with watching it come down. I realized that other than the dusting we got last year, he's never really seen snow coming down.

I ventured out to get my mail, and you could see where a few cars had been down my road. Pretty much everyone I know was sent home early from work, so I'm certain that over the next few hours the roads will pretty much empty out.

This is the view of my house after about 3 hours or so of the snow. It has yet to stop, and they say it's going to continue until after lunch tomorrow. Supposedly, we'll be getting around 7 inches.

It is pretty. And it's pretty exciting to see it since we NEVER get this kind of snow. I mean, obviously we do.... but it's very rare.

It's kind of ruining my plans for the weekend, so I'm a little displeased about that... but life goes on and I can reschedule for a few days from now when the roads clear up.

For now, Tucker and I are slowed in and planning on a quiet evening at the homestead as the snow continues to fall slowly and silently around us. Tomorrow? I'll probably have to go sledding. It doesn't matter that I'm almost 27 years old... this kind of snow brings out the kid in me.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Winter Weather in TN

I want you to know about the paranoia that happens in Tennessee when the weather people start calling for snow.

Sometime LAST WEEK they started talking about how it'd probably snow on Thursday. Snow doesn't come to middle Tennessee very often, so it's been one of the main news stories for a week.

As Thursday grew closer, the forecast changed like 50 times with regards to what time it might hit. At one point it was after dinner on Thursday. At other points it wouldn't be hitting til Friday. Earlier today, they said lunchtime tomorrow. Last I heard, it's coming in the morning.

TDOT started putting brine on the roads like yesterday. They meeting up at 3am to start with the salt. They have plans to work through the weekend to keep the roads as clear as possible.

Every county in the middle TN area has closed school tomorrow. And we haven't had a spec of precipitation yet! (Although in 2003 they didn't want to close schools early when they weather people said snow would hit before schools got out, and then they closed too late and it took until like 10pm to get the kids home. People were mad. I can see why they're jumping the gun now.)

People were hitting up the stores to stock up on food.

The hardware stores are sold out of sleds (not that they had many anyways since we so rarely get enough snow to sled in).

Here's the thing. It's probably not going to happen. We might get a dusting or get some icy roads, but most people who are born and raised in TN have a "I'll believe it when I see it" mentality when it comes to snow. We rarely believe the weather people.

I might be eating my words tomorrow. If I am, I promise to share pictures.

Honestly? I'm kind of hoping it doesn't do anything. It would totally interfere with my weekend plans. :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I'm a Total Sell-Out

I've refused to join the skinny jean train for as long as skinny jeans have been popular. (A year now? Two? I don't even know anymore.)

It's not that I don't think it's a cute look. I see girls rocking their skinny jeans and ballet flats and think they look cute all. the. time.

But moi? I may be a small size and all, but I'm a runner. This means I have calves. And thighs. And a butt. And skinny jeans? I don't really think they go with runner legs.

However, it was seeing girls in skinny jeans and boots that made me curious. It was a look that I wondered if I could rock. Since I have like 3 pairs of boots, I thought it might not hurt to try on a few pair and see if I can make it happen.

Honestly? I'm not very trendy. I'm definitely not hipster. I have a very classy look when it comes to my wardrobe. I like expensive clothes (although I NEVER pay much for anything I own... I rock clearance sales with extra percentages off and coupons and walk out of stores with tons of clothes for pennies. Some women pay $3.00 for groceries for a week. I pay $3.00 for a sweater from The Limited.). Skinny jeans just don't seem to fit in with my usual style.

But then I tried on a pair of skinny jeans at American Eagle, mostly on a whim because I haven't bought anything in there in like 10 years.

I bought them, and then I tried them on at home with all 3 pairs of boots.

I think I can make it work, as long as I wear the right kind of shirt.

I hope so anyways.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Date with the Treadmill

Let me preface this by saying that dates with boys are WAY more fun.

In an effort to get myself back to half marathon shape sooner rather than later, I needed to get an 8-miler in today. For some reason, I have been having zero success at getting myself to go do long runs on the weekends like I normally do... so they've been happening on Tuesdays instead.

I walked outside to test the weather. It's one thing when it's 34 degrees. It's another thing when it's 34 degrees and insanely windy and gloomy. I knew I'd be miserable if I ran it outside. Heck, I knew I'd be miserable if I ran it inside, but the treadmill was actually the lesser of the two evils to me today.

So I ran 8 miles on the treadmill at the gym.

I've found that it helps to time my treadmill running so that I can watch Ellen. I love how funny she is on her show, and she always has cool guests. It really helps me to not focus on counting the tenths of the miles when she's on.

Nonetheless, the hour and twenty minutes kind of dragged by... and I had several moments where I wanted to just not care and stop.

But I didn't. 8 miles = DONE.

It's interesting though... I always feel more worn out when I do runs on the treadmill, even though I usually run about the same pace as I do when I run outside. I suppose that in some ways it's just more mentally exhausting than running outside.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Lovely Day

Do you ever get to the end of a day and realize that you're exhausted because you were doing stuff non-stop, but that you don't mind because everything you did was fun? I LOVE those days, and I have been having more and more of them lately. Some due to the boy, but many due to a variety of other people and activities.

I started my day by waking up to snow. Don't get too excited. Last week it was in the 60s and we had several MAJOR thunderstorms, so there was no chance the snow would do anything but melt. Nonetheless, it's always pretty to see it coming down and swirling around on the road.

I met a friend for lunch at a cute little place where I had a yummy quiche and cream cheese filled strawberries. Seriously yummy. Super fun to catch up with her.

Then, I got my hair cut. This is also not as exciting as it sounds. I wear my hair long and straight, and I don't get layers. But after a few months it just starts to look kind of bad... so I LOVE getting it trimmed and how it looks so much healthier.

Then, I met my pal Courtney for coffee. She and I totally met through our blogs, but when I hang out with her I kind of feel like I've known her in real life for ages. We were laughing today about how we seem to be living parallel lives. Before we knew it, three hours had passed and I needed to get going for my dinner plans. I love those kinds of coffee meetings!

I rounded out my night with dinner with my family so that we could catch up with my little sister. She recently started grad school to become an elementary education teacher, and I'm so excited that she's feeling like she's really figured out what she wants to do with her life.

As for me, I'm still trying to figure that one out. :)

I'm worn out, but I'm enjoying a quiet evening catching up on blogs and some tv shows on hulu. This is probably wise since I need to get an 8-mile run in tomorrow. It'll be the longest I've ran since the marathon, so here's to hoping it goes well!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday Reflection

I know that I'm not posting as regularly right now.

It's not that I'm terribly busy.

Sure, I'm sleeping in pretty regularly and staying up super late even more regularly. What can I say? I've always been a night owl.

I've been reading. And watching DVDs. And burning all of the home videos my parents have on VHS onto DVDs. Let me tell you... THAT is quite the project! But it's one that I know my sister and I will be glad we did so that someday we'll have these videos of our youth saved in a format that we can use. At least until DVDs are weeded out and I have to find some other way to keep them.

I haven't been running as much, but that's ok. I'm doing enough to get myself into half marathon shape, and I'm taking more spin classes. I hope to add some swimming and more weight training/core work over the next month or so.

I'm getting more serious about my job search, and I've already found some awesome positions that I've put in applications for. Fingers crossed.

I'm spending some time with the boy. Ok, so he's a grown man, but it's more fun to talk about someone you're seeing as "the boy." We're having fun. There's no pressure to define anything, and that's actually made it rather refreshing. Of course, I still have managed to know exactly where I stand. And I'm happy about where I'm standing.

I'm considering what is about to happen in my life: a lot of change. With a new job will come a ton of change. I'll also be looking for a new place to live in the coming months. That means change for Tucker as well, but I know he adapts quickly as long as he knows he's with me.

I'm having fun. I'm a little nervous about what my future holds, but I'm also excited.

Life is good, even if I don't have a clue what's about to happen.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Book Review - Beautiful Mess: The Story of Diamond Rio

Thomas Nelson has started a new program called Book Sneeze where bloggers can get a book for free in exchange for agreeing to post a review about it upon reading. This post is part of this program. Who doesn't love free books?

A native of Nashville, I was instantly intrigued with the idea of reading a book about one of Nashville's most famous country music groups.

Diamond Rio. You may know them from "Meet in the Middle," "One More Day," or "Beautiful Mess." While they've been around since I was a small child (two decades!) and certainly aren't new on the country music scene, I've always enjoyed their music and felt that they are authentically Nashville. The opportunity to read their story has been quite exciting.

I found the book to be a particularly interesting window into the band's group dynamic. The book details how all six of the members came together, originally as the Tennessee River Boys. It goes on to offer a vivid account of the ups and downs the band faced together as they attempted to launch a music career. Everyone in Nashville knows that the music scene can be tough, but for anyone who isn't a musician this book allows the opportunity to see just how tough.

Along with sharing the story of the band's adventures and struggles, a chapter is devoted to each of the six men who make up Diamond Rio. It's particularly interesting to learn of each man's background and how he came to be in Nashville. Most of the men connected through temporary jobs at Opryland USA, an amusement park that no longer exists in Nashville.

The author, Tom Roland, goes to great lengths to describe problems the band faced when lead singer Marty Roe began having pitch problems. It was an issue that would have torn many bands apart, but these men came together to find a solution and bounce back.

Many musicians and other celebrities make an effort to give back to the community, and Diamond Rio is no exception. One chapter discusses Team Rio, a group they started to run the Country Music half or full marathon here in Nashville to raise money for Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Along with insight into the personal lives of each man, the book also provides photos throughout the pages. These visual images certainly allow the reader to walk through the years that have passed since Diamond Rio first got its start.

To anyone who is interested in music, particular country, this book makes for a good read. I found myself particularly intrigued since I grew up in Nashville and have memories of some of the people and places that are mentioned in this book.

It's a light read, but it's certainly one that provides some interesting anecdotes about this band and what it's like to make it as a group in the music world.

Racing Update

Well, I don't have to worry any more about trying to decide about the Shamrock Half or Full Marathon in March.

The half sold out, and my friend who offered to let me tag along decided that she wasn't going to go anymore.

Honestly? I'm good with this. I was really struggling to decide if I wanted to run a full this spring or not, and I kind of like having the decision made for me.

I've got two half marathons coming up as well as a 5K and 10K and my first triathlon. I feel like that's a decent bit to take on this spring, and I like the idea of taking it kind of easy for a little while.

So yay. It feels good to kind of know now what my spring season will look like!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Looking for a Job

This post is mainly directed to my readers in the greater Nashville area...

I am looking for a job.

If you know of something, would you be so kind as to get in touch with me about it?

Most of my experience has been as an Executive Assistant to the owner of a small business. I'm not against remaining in the administrative field, but I would want a position that involves a bit more than just paper pushing. I feel capable of taking on more responsibility.

I have a degree in journalism, and I'd certainly love to use it. This personal blog is definitely not something that I focus on as much as I would if I were being paid to write and/or edit, so I hope this won't really be used as an example of my work. I do the blog just for fun and not to show any evidence of what I can do in terms of writing and/or editing. With that being said, I'd love any kind of position where I spend time writing and/or editing. :)

I also found that I LOVE event planning when I planned a 5K for a local non-profit. This opened my eyes to the possibility of a job where I plan events.

I also feel drawn to the idea of working for a non-profit.

If you know of something, please let me know!

Once I find a job and know my income, I'm also going to be looking for a new place to live in Nashville. Feel free to let me know if you know of any good places with affordable rent for me and my cat.

Monday, January 18, 2010

2010 Running and Racing

I've been hesitant to share plans for 2010... I find myself having a hard time getting myself to sit down and sort them out. Part of it is that I'm also trying to get more serious about my job search, and I just have too many things on the brain right now. Another part of it is that it feels difficult to try to plan too much out when so much of my life is kind of up in the air.

Nonetheless, there are a few things that are either certain or close to certain.
  • February 13th - Frostbite Half Marathon (I'm not sure I'll be in the best shape for it, but at $5 if I don't want a shirt? It's a steal! And goodness knows I don't truly need another shirt.)
  • February 17th - Race Judicata 5K/10K (I'm undecided on this one, but it's pretty cheap to run both races. I might end up just doing the 10K, or maybe I'll do both, or maybe I'll skip it altogether.)
  • March 13th - Tom King Half Marathon (My current PR is from this course, and I'd kind of like to beat it this year. I think I should have time by then to be in shape to do it.)
  • March 21st - Shamrock Half/Full (I've got a free ride and free place to stay, so I'm leaning toward going. What I'm not sure of right now is if I can be in shape to do the full like I would like to or if I should stick to the half. Or maybe I'll save money and won't go at all.)
  • April 10th - YMCA Indoor Triathlon (This would be my first tri! I think doing an indoor one is a smart way to try out the event. It just means I need to get myself in the pool so I can handle the 500 yard swim.)
  • June 19th - RC Cola & Moon Pie 10-Miler (I run this race every year. Count me in again.)
  • November 21st - Flying Monkey Marathon (This is a pretty hilly marathon here in Nashville, but I think it would be good training for the Goofy Challenge in January. We'll see.)
I'm sure some other things will come up, especially in the second half of the year. Honestly, I'm not thinking much about any races past April or so anyways.

I'm definitely feeling a little uncertain about what I want to commit to outside of the first two half marathons and the indoor triathlon, so I think I'm going to quit thinking about it and just play it by ear as the days roll by.

In the meantime, I've been getting myself back to spin class and have logged a few runs. I feel like I'll bounce back quickly, but I know I'll feel better when I have a few more long runs under my belt and can see for sure what I can handle.

Honestly? I enjoyed taking a few weeks off. It's kind of hard to get myself going again. I love running and I'm ready to get my groove back, but at the same time I think I know that by signing up for the Goofy Challenge I also signed up for a heck of a fall training schedule. I think I want to be a bit more relaxed for the first part of the year and save both time and some money and not get as hardcore about racing all the time or anything.

It feels like a good decision. It feels good to share it in writing.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Last Day of Vacation

We woke up to some of the worst weather we saw all week on our Saturday at sea. The wind was terrible, and they weren't letting people up on the decks because of it. It was raining. And the waves were rough! I could feel the boat rocking a bit all week, but on this day it was so bad that you really couldn't walk in a straight line or keep your balance very well.

All of my family was struggling with it a bit and stayed in bed most of the day, but I don't have many issues with motion sickness so I spent the day entertaining myself.

First, I went to the towel demo and learned how to make towels into all sorts of animals. I had such a good time that I actually bought the book so that I can do it at home. I figured it'd be fun to make them to put on the bed when I have guests over or make them together with someone as a date night.

I went upstairs to get some ice cream and was able to take this photo that shows just how ugly it was outside.

This photo doesn't really do the waves justice, but it kind of shows how rough they were. The captain actually slowed the boat down because it was so bad, causing us to be 3 hours late getting into Tampa on Sunday morning.

I had some lunch and then went to take the kitchen tour. It was really interesting to see where they prepare all the meals and learn some interesting facts about how much food is on the ship, etc.

I also attended the farewell party and got to listen to another great band. Soon after, I got cleaned up and we all headed to dinner for the last time and then to the show.

None of us are really into gambling, but we put a couple of dollars into the penny machines. I was the only one who did kind of well on the slots when I walked away after turning $3 into $9.

We hung out and listened to some music until we finally went to bed and ended our vacation.

When we woke up in Tampa on Sunday morning, it was COLD. When we got back to Nashville, it was COLDER. Come to find out, it hadn't been above freezing all week. There had been an inch of snow. Most nights the temps were in the teens and the wind chill was below zero. This is very unusual for Nashville. Sure, maybe it was only in the 70s instead of the 90s where we were, but at least I was in a swim suit and flip flops most of the week and not freezing here in Nashville.

Saturday, January 16, 2010


This post is a little bit picture heavy, but this is in part due to the fact that we had terrific weather on Friday in Roatan AND we did some really fun stuff!

Unfortunately, my mom was sick and couldn't join us on the island this day. We got ready and left her with some medicine and food, and we met up with our tour guide for the day.

We went zip-lining! I've done some fun things in my life, and this definitely ranks up there as one of the most fun things I've done. It's comparable to white water rafting.

We got into the harnesses and headed out into the canopy where we got to do 12 different lines. It is SO super fun, and I was laughing most of the time. I'll let the pictures tell the story.

After we finished zip-lining, we got to visit some animals and hold them. Not only did we see several different birds (like the toucan in the picture below), we got to see monkeys just like the ones that were used on Friends for Marcel!

After we finished up with the animals, we went over to the beach. It had still been a bit cloudy, but as we hung out on the beach the clouds rolled away and the sun came out! Roatan was definitely the most beautiful place we visited.

Since it was sunny and warm, we spent the afternoon on deck reading, hanging out and listening to the band (three of our new friends were playing in it on the pool deck).

It was another dressy night at dinner, so we got all dolled up for our three-course meal and the show after. We hung out in the lobby again after the show with our new musician friends before going to bed with hopes of spending the next day by the pool.

Friday, January 15, 2010


On Thursday, we were in Belize. We woke up to clouds and rain. Ugh.

People say that if you don't have a tour planned in Belize, you might as well not get off the boat. They are right. There is nothing there. It's actually kind of sad because it's very apparent that it's a very poor country.

We had a river tubing tour planned, so we got off the ship despite the fact that the weather was kind of crappy.

Our tour guide drove us about an hour away to the place where we would take a short hike and then tube down a river through two caves. It stopped raining by the time we got started, but it was only about 65 degrees. Since we ended up soaking wet, we were quite chilly. Nonetheless, we actually had a great time. It was quite pleasant tubing along the river and checking out the inside of two massive caves. It was really pretty.

We had lunch at a cute little restaurant before riding back to the ship. Once on board we took naps and cleaned up for another night of yummy food at dinner and some entertainment. We also watched some of the national championship game and stayed up a little bit later hanging out. My sister and I met a few of the musicians on board and had some fun chatting with them. It's always interesting to me to meet people who live in other places, and I learned some interesting things about both Canada and Alaska.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Big Goofy Announcement

I just signed up for the 2011 Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge in Walt Disney World next January.

Yeah, I haven't even figured out which races I'm running THIS year and I've already signed up for one for next year.

I'm insane. You don't have to tell me.

And a tiny bit poorer (darn you and your ridiculous $20 processing fee on top of the already ridiculous race entry fee!)

I know tons of people will think I'm crazy. Or should we say goofy?

You'll think I'm goofy for wanting to run 13.1 miles on Saturday and then 26.2 miles on Sunday.

You'll think I'm goofy for spending around $300 to run 2 races. (And you'd be right. It took me 5 minutes to hit the button after entering my card info. I'm definitely paying for the experience here, that's for sure.)

You'll think I'm goofy that I'm also going to spend money to travel to Orlando and stay there (and let's be honest, I'll spend money on at least one day in the Magic Kingdom because how can I be at Disney World and not go to MK?).

But here's the thing. It may be goofy, but I think it's the best decision I've made so far in 2010.

I've always been a runner for the fun and for the challenge of trying to see what I'm capable of doing. If there's one thing I know for sure, it's that running in these races will be fun. It will also certainly be a challenge.

I have never run that much mileage in one weekend. I know that training for it will be very different this fall. It will be hard. I will have days when I will have to come back to this post to remind myself why I signed up for the darn thing. But when I cross both of those finish lines and when I come home with those 3 medals, I will know that I just did something I have never done before. I will feel ecstatic with the accomplishment of running 39.3 miles in one weekend.

A lot of people only race to see how fast they can go, and I have days where I care about time goals... but I can tell you right now that I will have no time goal for these races other than to finish in the time allotted (you have to keep a 16-minute pace... this should not be a bit of a problem). I don't give a flip what my time will be. The only time that will matter to me is whether or not I'm having fun with the time I spend out there.

I am also doing this for fun. I grew up going to Disney World pretty often... I've been at least 5 times (maybe 6... I've lost count) and always have a blast exploring the parks and riding the rides. There's something about the magic of Disney that mesmerized me as a kid, and I never quite shook it off. The last time I went I was 23 (as seen in the photo above), and I still loved riding everything from the big rollercoasters to the little Dumbo ride where you push a button to go up and down.

I want to stop and take my picture with every character I see during the races. I want to have a photo in front of the Cinderella castle. I want to shake hands with Mickey and get those Mickey, Donald and Goofy medals. I think I'll have a smile on my face the whole time.

So yeah, it's expensive. And yeah, going down there for a few days will end up being a small vacation in terms of time and money. But I think the experience is going to be incredibly unique.

I know it'll be here before I know it, and in the words of Goofy, I'm pretty "gosh darn" excited.


On Tuesday, we woke up to sunnier skies in Cozumel, Mexico. It was still a bit windy, but we were excited to put on our swim suits and head to the beach.

Once off the ship, we snapped a couple of photos around the dock.

There was still a Christmas tree up near the dock. Feliz Navidad!

We took a taxi over to Paradise Beach resort. Upon arrival, we found a beautiful beach and tons of chairs for us to lounge in. The area was beautiful! After spotting some gorgeous parrots, we found a spot to set up camp for the day.

Since we finally had nice weather, we spent some time walking around the beach and taking some photos. Please pardon the gratuitous bathing suit shots. I was on a beach. :) And yes, despite the radical difference in our skin tones, this girl is indeed my sister.

There were a ton of things out in the water that you could play on, and being the big kid that I am I took full advantage of the inflatable slides, the trampoline and the snorkel gear.

I had a blast playing in the ocean, and I'm glad I took advantage since it ended up being the only day that it was really warm enough to spend much time in the water. I also got a good workout swimming from item to item, so I felt a little less guilty about all of the desserts I kept eating o the ship! And let me tell you... jumping on a trampoline that is bouncing on ocean waves? Not so easy.

Once on the ship, we got to see a gorgeous sunset as we pulled away from the dock. It ended up being the only day that it wasn't too cloudy to see it.

We cleaned up and had another nice meal and entertainment before calling it a night. Playing in the ocean and the sun wears you out!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Grand Cayman

My family took a seven day cruise on the Carnival Legend. We were told to invite friends, and one of the guys that my sister and I were both friends with in high school decided to take us up on it and come along. We left last Sunday from Tampa, FL hoping for warm, sunny weather.

On our first day at sea, it was a bit warmer, but not warm enough for me to get into my swim suit. Nonetheless, I was walking around in a t-shirt. We spent most of the day snoozing, reading on the deck, playing cards, and eating. (I may or may not have gained 3 pounds during the week.)

When Tuesday rolled around, we were excited to be at Grand Cayman. Our day called for a tour where we'd get to check out some stingrays and then go snorkeling. Unfortunately, it was crazy windy and the tour was cancelled. We were all disappointed, but we made the best of it by walking to the beach. The wind kept it cool enough that we didn't really want to get in the water, and it was sadly quite cloudy. We still snapped some photos and did a little reading on the beach before heading back to the ship.

As we left Grand Cayman, we crossed our fingers for better weather the next day in Cozumel. I kept reminding myself that it was MUCH warmer than at home (we missed unseasonably cold temperatures that never got above freezing while we were away), but I was determined to get to spend some time in the water.

Every night on the ship brought a yummy 3-course meal and some entertainment such as a comedian, juggler, or singers/dancers. We managed to keep ourselves busy with such things each evening.