America, Celebration, Family, Health, Summer, Travel

Bare Necessities

Leave it to my brother to come over to our house and make homemade mayonnaise. It’s a running joke for him that Chris and I never have what he deems that we “need”. Given, we were having a burger night and we didn’t have mayonnaise, so I guess he could make that point. However, neither Chris nor I like mayonnaise, so I can just as easily make the point that it isn’t something we need. Regardless, Jake made homemade mayo for those guests who required it and no one had a dry burger.

(Personal note: the good bulk of this post was written while on our honeymoon, so enjoy the warm, sunny photos while most of us are probably frozen in for the winter)

As a new couple, we’ve heard communication is key. Our communication is pretty good, but adding a second language to the mix while traveling for our honeymoon didn’t help. Our flight was routed through Panama City, and on our flight from Panama to Costa Rica, we were assigned to boarding group E. Chris, realizing that they would call all announcements in Spanish, asked me if they would say E or if it would sound different. I was absorbed in trying to read the signs in Spanish around us and thought he was asking me about the Spanish “y”, which is pronounced like the letter E and means “and” in Spanish. So, I said, “yes, ‘and’ is pronounced E”, which totally confused him. After a few more seconds, we finally got on the same page, and luckily on the same flight.

So, let me give you a brief overview of our honeymoon. It was beautiful. Tiers of natural thermal springs, running through the rainforest, like our own little personal hot tubs. We had an excellent time, this part of Costa Rica is one of my favorite places in the world.

The only slight downside to our trip was that the airline lost our luggage. Not like lost it, like it was delayed a few hours in getting delivered to our hotel. Lost it like we arrived on Sunday and our bag didn’t arrive until Thursday night.

At first, I was fine with it, then I became frustrated. But, such is life. My ever-prepared Chris made us pack an extra set of clothes and one bathing suit each in our carry-on bag, so we were pretty set for our first day of lounging in the hot springs. However, our zip lining and water rafting excursions required shoes that wouldn’t fall off, so our resort graciously gave us free transportation to the nearest town, which is how I ended up with these sweet $6 water shoes.

I also only had one t-shirt with us, which if you know me at all, is basically a state of emergency. So, on our trip into town, Chris was forced to go to about 10 souvenir shops with me as I scoured for a shirt I liked.

Shopping with me can be a painful experience of indecisiveness, but Chris was a trooper. When I finally found a shirt I liked, a blue tee with an cool zip-lining iguana on it wearing sunglasses, I asked Chris what he thought of it. His response was “it’s very you”, which shows just how well he knows me, because it is very me.

After I got my water shoes, iguana tee, and Chris got some hair gel, I felt much more settled. Maybe we didn’t need all of our stuff after all. Maybe we way over-packed. I definitely didn’t need all those t-shirts I packed. I had one with an iguana on it now. What more could I need? We both had shoes, dry clothes, a bathing suit, a towel.

But on a bigger scale, we had made it safely. We were well taken care of. We were healthy. And we had each other.

That’s really all we need.

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America, Animals, Celebration, Culture, Family, Farm, Funny, Outdoors, Summer, Travel

Pura Vida 

We found a boy with a machete to cut a way through the jungle to take us to see a waterfall. I wish it were less sketchy than it sounds, but it’s not. 


We were supposed to be fishing on Lake Arenal in Costa Rica. But, the wind had other ideas. So, Plan B? A “horseback ride to a waterfall”. My mind is conjuring up images of a peaceful, smooth horseback ride down to a quaint waterfall, a splash in the water, then back on the horse and to the barn. This picture encapsulates my mental image. (Also, there’s the lake I should’ve been fishing in the background.)


What I didn’t have in mind was climbing up and down very steep hills (more commonly called mountains) on horseback and nearly sliding down the mountain on the back of said horse. 


I also didn’t realize that our guide would be a 15 year old boy with a machete and his uncle. Who didn’t speak much English.

Or that they would need the aforementioned machete to slice through the jungle to create a “path” that would could “walk” (read: slide) down.


Or that it would be such a slippery, steep, and narrow “path” that I would need to hold someone’s hand the whole time to navigate. 


These poor guys had to switch spots to constantly be in front of me to help me every step of the way. I know this because they kept talking to each other and saying “ella”, which I knew was me because I was the only girl in our group of 4. 

I only fell down twice, and laughed through most of it, as the ridiculousness of what we were doing kept setting in more and more. 


I also didn’t realize that this hike would take nearly two hours to complete and that it would be the most intense hike I’ve ever done. 

So, here’s me, not thinking about what I’m actually getting myself into. What’s new? 

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