Our only sad note was that we missed you, Alice!!!
Grace and I enjoyed morning walks on the beach, where we often found interesting things, including starfish, shells and a dead sea snake.
Speaking of walks, each evening our big family would find ourselves on the streets of the town, out looking for flan, churros or ice cream. Rincon de Guyabitos locals didn't know what hit them!
And speaking of going out on the town, we enjoyed a fun Sunday trip into La Penita for church, where Ethan slept in Derick's lap and Greg blessed the sacrament, said the closing prayer and was generally the only one who understood anything. We did sing "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" for our closing hymn. I'm pretty sure they threw that in for us gringos, but it was strange to sing it in Spanish. Who knew it was even in the Spanish hymn book?!
Speaking of Spanish music, we had a wonderful impromptu dance party on the beach one night with a Mariachi band that only knew one song that they played over, and over, and over, and over....
And speaking of the beach, much time was spent in that sand or in the water crashing over that sand.
Is Jane not the most amazing backward boogie-boarder ever!?!
Grandma and Grandpa devised this wonderful game of tying a balloon to the kids' ankles, and they had to pop each other's balloon.
And speaking of wonderful activities for the kids, we enjoyed the annual pinata:
And this year, Aunt Ellen brought all the supplies to make cute tie-dye shirts with the kids. The most darling little boy came up off the beach to sell his wares, and was captivated by the process of tie-dying. So, Aunt Ellen helped him make a shirt. He was SOOOOO cute and became our best friend, coming to see us at least three times a day for the rest of the week.
And speaking of cute little kids, we spent a morning at the most darling school, distributing the school supplies that we brought down. It was fun and tender and reminded us of how blessed we are. I was conflicted, as on the one hand, I feel it is a good thing for my girls to see where their donations are going, but on the other hand, it felt a little, "We are the rich American benefactors, condescending to bless you." Not sure where the right line is on that one, but hopefully, it teaches my children to be grateful and charitable and doesn't inflate their egos. The school kids were darling and so happy and sweet.
Speaking of happy, you should have seen us on our whale watching trip, that started off rather disappointing. We had already declared it to be the worst in 13 years. But I prayed like crazy that we would see a whale, as we had three family members on their first whale watch. God answers prayers, because we soon found a mom and her baby. The baby jumped out of the water at least 30 times, and our boat trip jumped from being the worst to the best. Also, my bro-in-law, Robert, brought an under water microphone and recorded the whale song. INCREDIBLE!!!!
Yes, I took this with my iphone:
Speaking of incredible, look how beautiful Grandma Tallmadge looks:
And beating everyone at Bridge:
And speaking of bridge, behind Grace, you can see where Ethan hangs out all day, when he's not swimming:
Speaking of swimming, we did a lot of it:
We also did a lot of eating:
Greg took Grace down to the beach to buy that drink, and the lady said to Greg in Spanish, "You come here every year, don't you? I remember your little sick boy when he was just a baby, and now he is so big!"
And speaking of being recognized- as I was coming out of the waves one day, the older gentleman who was surfing near us asked if I was on television. I didn't really know how to respond to that, as I wasn't exactly sure if he was talking about what I thought he was talking about... He finally said, "Aren't you on the I'm a Mormon commercials?" I was somewhat stunned, as I answered in the affirmative. He is from Denver, where they played the ads last spring. I was amazed that he could recognize me at all, much less in a wet suit, no make-up and my hair pulled back.
And speaking of looking scary:
The kids had fun indulging at the market.
And speaking of fun indulgences, Gracie got a pedicure.
The polish lasted 5 minutes in the pool. She was pretty devastated.
At least her fancy hair-do lasted longer.
And speaking of being somewhat spoiled...
Oh, were we speaking of that!? While we were sitting by the pool one day, Greg realized that exactly 30 years before, to the day, he had come to that same beach in Mexico with his family.
Oh, and while we're on the subject...
What does it say about these kids that they have a beach 100 yards from this couch, but they are choosing to watch Studio C on their phones???
Well, hopefully, they didn't get too spoiled. They sure are loving and sweet with this little boy and his crazy brother:
Adios, Mexico!! Until next January (as Ethan continues to remind me daily)!!