Monday, October 30, 2017

Epic Vacation Day 7 - Friday at Club Med

I have to write down the days of the week, when I tell our stories about our trip, because I won't remember otherwise. Isn't that the sign of a great vacation, where the days all blur together, and simply make us smile?!  Well, Mission Accomplished.

Another Beautiful day at Club Med.  
After Breakfast we walked back to our room, which is the corner on the second floor on the brown building in the lower left corner.  It had been an oddly quiet morning.  Chris had spent the night at Grandma and Grandpa's room, so they got him ready for camp.   Technically our room only sleeps 4, however it is possible to get 3 into the Kind  And let the big kids have  the couch beds.  It turns out getting only two children ready in the morning doesn't take as long. 

This pretty little fella was parked on the roof just outside our room door as we returned from breakfast. 

We decided that this was a Red Shoulder Hawk, because of that rusty shading, and those black and white marking on the tail. I love website for bird identification.  

It's the tail that gives it away.  That black and white tail with the rust (red chest and shoulders) make it a Red Shouldered Hawk.  He was probably 3 feet away from me as we went to the door of the room.  He just sat there looking at us.  The kids would've thought that was Awesome, but they were already in Kids Club.  

It was going to be a hot day, and it occurred to us that we needed to get Christopher a hat the day before.  When we bought one for Chris, I found one that I liked.  I kept thinking of it.  So when we walked by the shop, looking for postcards, I bought the hat for myself.  

Like it, it's Autumn Sunrise? 
One of my favorite lines from Ghost.  
I think the rule is you can't wear white after Labor Day, unless you are at the Beach in Florida and it's 80 degrees.  Because I saw a lot of folks wearing white.  
And I got a new happy hat! 

We went to the family pool to hang out with Mom and Dad.  While we were there, we saw the boys playing down at the other end. 

My sweetboys came over to pay us a visit.  They were with their Kids Club Crew, swimming, but since they both aren't really in danger of drowning, as they are better swimmers, they are allowed to come and go as they wished.  We even gave them permission to roam.  I thought they'd use it to go get a smoothie, but No, they wanted to go swim.  All the time!

Mom and Aunt Teri doing the Water Aerobics class. Aqua Gym.
They talked me into it.  Moments before, I was out in that water too. 
It was actually a fun class, except it focused a lot on having my arms out of the water.  
My arm strength is crappy, and my knees aren't too hot either.  
I have to watch it, and not overdo it too much.  

Play I Spy.  Do you spy a Sweetboy?
We snuck into Kids Club early, to take the kids Paddleboating.  Only they were having such a great time, they didn't want to leave.  

Sam shoots new friends with a water pistol from the right.  

While Sam shoots, Jacob runs under the giant water mushroom.  He didn't want to leave, not even for yellow boats. 

Now Chris takes a turn shooting at his brothers and cousin Cole coming down the small water slide.  
They didn't want to leave early to go Paddleboarding.  They wanted to play.  
So we let them.  

Bryce made it through a few hours at Kids Club!  
He got pretty upset the day before, but on this day, we bumped into Karl and Erica going to pick up the kids.  We'd been able to have lunch together.  

He's not too sure about what's going on.  

If you're going to recover from a giant meltdown about not being able to go Paddleboarding, sitting in a big tropical chair is the way to do it.  This made him smile.  Although, he'd been so upset, it was a very Mona Lisa sort of smile. 

Jacob finds the " fuzzy wheats".  
He thought they were pretty fun.  
Mommy just loved the lighting.  A sunset. A sweetboy. 
Life is Good. 

After we changed from the pool, the sun was setting as we headed to supper.  
Wow God! 

As the sunset over our lagoon, some nifty birds come out to play.  
I think this was a Little Blue Heron.  
But he was so pretty tapping along, exploring for snacks at sunset. 

The wore this sweetboy out.  
And check it out.  He let someone hold him.  Lately, he's been in a Mama only phase.  
That was another reason that Kids Club was a bit of an adjustment for him.  
So sweet as he sleeps. 

After dinner, Mom and Aunt Teri talked us into going to the 'Circus Show'.   
It was the staff working their own mini-cirque de soleil.  
Pretty nifty.  
The bummer was it was terribly loud.  
It was neat seeing my water aerobics up there swinging on the flying trapeze, but at the same time, obnoxiously loud, I couldn't talk to the kids, Chris was getting so upset at the noise. 
He's just not cut out for that. 
And who would think of bringing noise cancelling headphones to Club Med.  We didn't. 
Jake and Sam stayed with Daddy to go to the Dance Party after the show. Chris and I needed to Get Out of there.  We couldn't take the noise.  (It's very chicken and egg, which came first, Chris hating loud crazy places or me?  Or was it because of Chris that I now hate that sort of thing?)

Can you see who is behind the tree? 
It's a Great Blue Heron!  
He was 5 feet tall and walking along the waters edge.  
We were maybe 20 feet away from him.   He didn't fly away, he just watched us warily with one eye. 
It was actually beautiful. 
Chris and I just sat there watching him walk. 

He walked on past us.  
My phone camera didn't want to take anymore pictures.  Too dark, there wasn't enough ambient light.  I refused to let it use the flash, because I didn't want to scare him away. 
Once past us, we watched.  You can see his silouette in the golden light reflected on the water. 
Very Cool. 

There is just something inheritantly peaceful about watching animals by the water, or just sitting by the water.  It's easier at night, one isn't as likely to get sunburned. ;)  

For Chris and I, it was a perfect note to end on.  We sat there so long, Daddy and the littles came right down the path to us, and we all went home and went to bed.  ❤ 

Epic Vacation, Day 6 - Club Med Thursday

The first time I went to Club Med, I spent most of the trip sick.  It was morning sickness for Jacob, except that it hit me Morning and Evening.  And it's really hard to enjoy when you can't Drink. 
It was particularly hard for me to get over the fact, that this was Not Disney World.  

We hadn't even been there 24 hours, and suddenly it was Already a better trip! 

This was the view out of our back door in the morning on Thursday. 

Seriously, the rains had gone, and we received a sign of God's Promise.  
What a great Sign of the good things to come?!  

The Kids couldn't wait to go to Kids Club.  
They were excited to be able to pick out whatever clothes they wanted.  We don't have to match when we're not on the Move.   They couldn't wait to go Play! 

Jacob got to be in Kids Club with his cousin Cole.  
They hit it off immediately, and played before the day had officially begun. 
It was Brilliant having the cousins play together in Kids club.  
Jacob and Cole were in with the littler kids, and Sam and Chris were in the same group.  

Giant Spider Lily 
Giant indeed.  This thing was taller than me. 
I took a few minutes just to snap a flower or two after breakfast and the kids hit their Club.  

Then it was off to the Quiet Pool (AKA the Calm Pool) for Eric and I.  

We found Mom and Aunt Teri, and we sat in the shade for a moment or two chatting.  
We closed the cabana curtain, so the sun wouldn't fry us.  

Mom and Eric take to the Quiet Pool.  
I joined them, but didn't take my phone with me.  
I prefer to be camera free while I do my best imitation of a beached whale.  
If I put my head just so, this pool is almost like an infinity pool.  

Oh yes, and in case I didn't mention it.  That's the mini - bar.  
They made mango mix, which I had unleaded since we'd just had breakfast. 
It weirded me out to drink booze before 11 a.m. 

Um, This. 
Crepe Day. 
Not every day, but some days, there was a Crepe Lady making desserts.  Almost every other day.
On our first lunch day, when Eric and I were blissfully eating in the Adults Only dining room, (kids at Kids Camp, WOOHOO!) I got a Bananas Foster Crepe for dessert from lunch. 
Oy Vey. 

Crepe day became my favorite day!

The Regatta 
Apparently, once a week they have a race for the sailboats, for the new students, and any youth that want to try.   
They all took off right after we took our naps. We watched half the race from our lanai.   

Meanwhile, the Kids Club set up their own Kids Olympics on the beach. 
They were having a Sandcastle building contest.  
Down the beach Uncle Ryan, Aunt Amy and Jeremiah played.  They didn't do Kids Club. 

OK, my kids are the ones in hats.  
Cole is the shirtless one on the left, playing with Christopher (in the shark shirt). 
Sam and Jacob are on the right in green. 
Super Cute, and having a Great Time! 

Evening Swim! 

Dinner begins at 6:30.  We're old fuddy duddies, and would have liked to eat dinner earlier.  But a significant portion of their clientele is European and eats later.  
The kids get out of Kids Club at 4.  So we decided that between Kids Club ending, if no one was desperate for a nap, (not me, I'd had one!) then we could go for our Evening Swim. 
Last time we came, we were allowed to swim in the evenings.  That was not the case anymore.  
They close up the pool at like 7 or 8, dusk, while we are inside having dinner.  
So a sunset, evening swim was the best time to try having a Family Swim.  

Oh yeah.  
4 boys having a great time in the pool, while Mommy rests poolside.  
I was drying, that's it. 
And resting my hip.  
While having a Family Swim, Jacob took off.  Turns out he can dunk his head under, and hold his breath.  I didn't realize that, and the first time he did so, he was just out of reach, so I dove for him.  
I thought I'd saved him, but he was fine. He knew what he was doing.  Whew.  
On the downside, I had a heart attack and hurt myself, as my hip dodged out of joint while I was trying to 'rescue' Jacob. 
The rest of the evening, I rested. 
At least my toes were cute. 

Those would be my children.  Out of reach. 
And doing just fine. 

My favorite sound in the world is listening to my boys all laugh and play happily together. 
That's a great way to end the day. <3

My Rock Star

Sweetboy at Sunset. 

Chris and I were bringing up the rear on our way to dinner. 
He had to finish up his flush.  

We weren't that late. 

Everyone is enchanted by Baby Bryce. 
The oldest and the youngest. <3

Big boy needs a drink. 
I got to sit across from Jeremiah. 
He'd spent most of his day at the pool with his parents and sisters.  
So I didn't get to see much of them, or him. 
He was quieter than Jacob.  

But he definitely has a goofy streak. 
Fits right in. 

When we came out of dinner, it was dark, and the path was lit by the fire candles. 
It took a minute to get the kids to leave them alone. 
But they sure were pretty. 

My new goodie. 
Not as pretty as my new goodie.  
I'd ordered this Desert Mist Diffuser back in June, but with an Insect Repellent that Indiana won't let ship in.  So I had it sent to Mom in Florida.  But she'd not been home to receive it.  It went to Aunt Teri, while Mom missed the window.  So I wasn't able to pick up this package until we were at Mom's condo.  So this was the first time I got to unpack this light.  
It has a Candlelight setting, like incandescent with a hint of a flicker.  
So Beautiful! And the light was so calming.  It makes me sleepy just to write about it. 
I guess that's my sign to call this blog entry complete.  
It was a wonderfully exhausting day. 

Epic Vacation Day 5 - From Grandma's to Club Med

After taking a laundry day, and just a swim, we got to bed at a semi-reasonable hour Tuesday night.  Unfortunately, Jacob fell out of bed at 2 am, and needed to switch places with Christopher, and I couldn't fall back to sleep .  So I started a load of laundry of our day clothes in Mom's washer.  Well, that woke Sam, so he took my place in the bed, and I took his spot on the couch.  It wasn't as cushy.

They are the sweetest when they sleep. <3

I didn't sleep well, but they did.  And they had energy.  And then we commenced with washing as much of the laundry as we could and packing before we headed out. 

On the way to Aunt Teri's for laundry, I saw this huge bird out front of one of her neighbors.  Wowza.  I think it's a Broadwing Hawk, judging by the bands on it's tail. Either that or a Red Tailed Hawk.  But he didn't seem red enough.  

Some of the local birdies.  
The pond behind Mom and Dad's building had all kinds of birdies. 
I think one was an Anhinga, and the other something white Egret. 

Mr. Great White Egret takes off!  

Jacob found another visitor in the front yard as we were packing up, Mr. Stork. 

He was a hoot chasing the Wood Stork down the street! 

He got such a kick out to the birds!  

Bye Bye Grandma's House! 
Maybe next time we visit, Grandma and Grandpa will actually be there. 

Three boys, being crazy, in the car. 

We were driving through the swamplands of mid-Florida when a storm popped up. 
Still looked pretty cool! 

I literally found myself asking the age old question, "What's that white line?" And explaining it to the boys.  Now they know what the White Line is. 

The White Line is a big rainstorm. 
Check out this pic. As soon as we were out of the storm, the ground was dry, the sun was out, but my car was soaked, and it was still Dark behind us.  Very Cool. 

We began to see Pelicans flying as we neared the beach.  The best quote of the day was Jacob, "Oh I want a Pelican!  I want to eat a Pelican!"  Eww.  But he thought they'd be tasty just like any other bird.  

And Welcome to Club Med! 

We pulled in just after 3.  As we stood there, Mom and Dad came in behind us.  Eric came shortly thereafter with Karl and his crew, they'd flown in together. Within 10 minutes, all the Willmans congregated upon the Club Med Lobby.  It was Awesome! 

The hotel helper offered to take us in his golf cart to our building/room.  
The kids couldn't wait to ride it.  So we let them ride in the golf cart, while we followed in the minivan. 

A tour of our room!  
The boys were bummed, we didn't have the room with the bunk beds again.  
However, our room was right next door to Aunt Teri, Alexis and Kaylee.  
Apparently, they only took 4 to a room, so one of the boys got to have the privilege to sleep in Grandma and Grandpa's room if they were good.  

View Haloo!  
The boys LOVED the view from our lanai!

View Haloo!

Mommy practices getting a Panorama shot. 
When Jacob saw all the sailboats and giant yellow paddleboards on the beach, he began declaring how much he wanted to go do that.  The other best quote of the day, "I want to go waterboarding on the beach!"

Since dinner wasn't until 6:30, we opted to go to the little cafe, and get a little snack at 4.  We ended up meeting various family members.  And Priorities Yo, Mommy got a nice chilled glass of pink wine for her first beverage of the treat.  There was no drinking while driving, nor drinking while I was the only grownup on duty with the kids.  But now I had lots of Fam helpers.  We got some shrimp on a stick with a side of macaroni and cheese which was amazeballs, with 4 cheeses and bacon. Oh yeah. 
As we sat there discussing everyone's trips, we got a bit of rain, not as bad as the storm as we'd had on the drive though. 

 That's Florida.  Give it 10 minutes and the weather will change.  Like this!  

Check out this buddy we met on the way back to our room. 
All I could think was Mmm... look at that delicious crab claw! 

Kaylee caught her first lizard, this little baby enchanted all the boys the way this little baby ran up and down her arms and legs. It was super cute! 

Sam at sunset. 
On the way to dinner, Sam and I were dallying, looking for Mr. Crabs. He's so handsome.
It was a great note to go end the day, a beautiful sunset, and a yummy dinner with our family. 
They didn't put us in group together, but I sat where I could watch Bryce eat, and chatted with our family in line.  So it was still cool, and there is so much more to come!