Saturday, March 31, 2007

Get your own pictures!

Hello! My wedding pictures are ready so anyone who wants to look at them can at http://www.photoreflect.com/pr3/thumbpage.aspx?e=2801562 The password is fanuel. If you want to purchase pictures from this site, you're welcome to. It will have you fill out shipping info and the pictures will come right to your house. For those of you in town, I will have all the proofs on a disk by next week and you can print them that way if you want.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Honeymoon IV: Puerto Vallarta and the Wrap Up

We spent Thursday of our honeymoon in Puerto Vallarta which was my favorite place. The city is really clean and nice. Out of the 300,000 people that live there, 15,000 are American so the city is pretty wealthy by Mexican standards. They even have Nissan and Ford dealerships. During the day we went on a hike in the jungle and had lunch at a little restaraunt up there and at night we went out to a private island and had dinner and saw a show. It was a great day and we will definitley be going back to spend more time in Puerto Vallarta.

This is a picture of me and Gabe on the hiking trail in the jungle. You could so get lost in there!



We followed this river all the way through. It ran through the jungle like a terrace, creating different pools on it's way. It was so beautiful!



After our hike, we stopped for lunch at a place called El Eden. It's a little restaraunt built into the side of the mountain right above the river at the side of a pool. You can swim in the pool there and all the dining is outside. They even cook the food outside. Their claim to fame is that this is the area where the movie "Predator" was filmed. All of the signs leading up to it say (in Spanish), "Welcome to El Eden, home of the Predator." They even have one of the helicopters from the movie on display in the middle of this beautiful place. It was so funny because the people there would ask us where we're from and when we told them California, they would ask us, "Do you know Arnold Schwartzenager? He was in the Predator. If you see him, tell him we said 'hello'." They love Arnold there. Here's the helicopter "monument."



We weren't very hungry so we just had quesadillas for lunch but Gabe ordered a margarita. We couldn't believe how big it was. We had to take a picture. He said it was really strong too.




This is the pool that the restaraunt is next to. You can swim in there and the rocks at the back right side serve as a water slide.


Driving into the jungle, we had to take a bus up a NARROW road with a cliff to one side. Our amazing bus driver is a gray haired, blue eyed native of Puerto Vallarta. All the people there think he looks like Bill Clinton so they call him Bill. I decided to have my picture taken with the President.

The island we went to for dinner can only be reached by boat. As we approached, we could see that the whole thing was lit by candles and torches and there were men standing on the rocks at the waters edge, blowing on conch shells to welcome us. You wouldn't believe how loud it was. The rest of the pictures didn't turn out too good because it was getting dark but you get the idea.

The sign says "Welcome to Las Caletas" and this couple led us to our table. We had the best food ever there. Grilled Mahi Mahi and all the extras with chocolate pie and cheese cake for dessert; all prepared on the island without the use of electricity.

After dinner we sat in an outdoor amphitheatre and the residents of the island put on a show. They beat these huge drums and played homemade instruments. They did all different kinds of dancing too, including a fire dance. I felt as though I could be sacrificed to their Pagan gods at any minute but they let me get back on the boat when it was over.

On the way back to our cruise ship, the guides hosting us on the boat had a little party. They had a full open bar and put on their own production of "Mexican Grease." One of the male tour guides dressed up as Olivia Newton John, sporting toilet paper breasts, and another as John Travolta. They were actually really good dancers. It was hilarious.

We spent the last two days on the boat, heading back to LA. We participated in some of the planned activities but for the most part, we just took it easy and entertained ourselves. Gabe tried on my sun hat one night before dinner and it looked so nice, I thought I'd get a picture. He wouldn't wear it at the pool though. It makes him look like an explorer or something, "Dr. Livingston, I presume?"

You're assigned to a specific table for dinner and eat with the same people every night on the ship. The people we ate with were fantastic and we had so much fun with them.

Before the wedding, my bridesmaid gave me a "Naughty or Nice" bridal shower. I mostly just got a bunch of lingere and Victorias Secret gift cards but one girl brought me a pair of fuzzy handcuffs. I thought it would be funny to pack them in our stuff so Gabe could find them when he was unpacking. After we got on the boat, our luggage was suppose to be delivered but it still wasn't there by 10pm. I threw a little fit and they located our baggage. Turns out my impatience was unwarranted because security had held my baggage, stating that we were carrying illegal paraphernalia. They had x-rayed the baggage and just thought they were normal hadcuffs. It was a little embarassing but mostly funny when they made me open my bags myself and hand over the furry ones. We decided they make a good story so we went to security and claimed them when we got home. We're going to hang them on the wall above our bedroom door when we buy a house.

So, to summarize, great wedding, great honwymoon, great husband, great life.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Honeymoon III: Mazatlan

We spent Wednesday in Mazatlan. We toured the Mangrove forests and looked at all the different birds that live there. The pelicans in Mexico are very friendly, which is very different from the standoffish ones here in SD. They will come right up to you and try to eat from your hand. They even ride along on the boats. The pelican above is riding on the engine of a boat that's moving. The one below pelican flew in and plopped down next to our tour guide. The tour guide said his name is Pancho and that he would not leave until we fed him. He said you can always tell it's him because he has a mohawk and blue eyes. Sure enough, he stuck around until we gave him some fish. He was so beautiful.








These are some fishernmen we saw on our tour. They work all day on this little boat fishing for bait and shrimp.












Gabe and I in the boat we were riding in with about 20 other people.


We stopped at a "wildlife preserve" and looked at some caymans. This is what the enclosures they live in look like. This one even has a baby in there with her.






You would run around like a chicken too if you lived with a bunch of caymans.






After our boat ride, the guides took us back to town by towing us in a cart pulled by a tractor. We went right up the beach for about 10 miles with the ocean on one side and the coconut groves on the other. they said if the tide had been in we would've had to walk back. That information was not in the tour description.








We stopped on the way back and had lunch at a restraunt and layed out on the beach. Some women came and braided my hair all into rows. I have A LOT of hair and they got this done within about 15 minutes, including putting in beads and flowers.







The finished product:






What my hair looked like when we took the braids out a couple days later:





The pelicans came to see us off as we headed back to our ship.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Honeymoon II: Cabo San Lucas





On Tuesday we spent the day in Cabo San Lucas. The city was typically dirty and poor but the port was very nice and the landscape was breathtaking. You could tell where the wealthy people lived because their houses were HUGE. The people in Mexico during our entire trip were nothing but kind and humble. We loved them! We kayaked across the Sea of Cortez where it meets the Pacific Ocean to a place called Lands End. We snorkeled there and spent some time walking around Lover's Beach. It was so beautiful. The coral isn't in bloom right now so there weren't too many fish but we saw a few. The water was so clear you could see straight to the bottom.









After we kayaked back to Cabo, we walked around the town for a while and checked stuff out. We went into some of the shops on the peir. My favorite was Senor Sweet's. I bought a whole wheat muffin there that had blueberries in it the size of marbles. They were so juicy they stained my fingers. It was so good. I couldn't even eat the whole thing and had to give half to Gabe.



Once we left the peir and made our way into town, Gabe had a couple of stops he wanted to make. He's a big Van Halen fan so we went to Sammy Hagar's place, Cabo Wabo and Gabe had one of their famous margaritas. He was so excited to be there, he was like a kid in a candy store. After that we went across the street to another famous bar called The Giggling Marlin and got him a shirt from there.




On the way back to boat we saw a really cool Mexico edition Harley Davidson. The owner told us that it is one of only 100 in the world. This was number 75. My dad's a big Harley fan so we took pictures of it to show to him. I was wondering out loud to him about how a bike like that ended up in the poor neighborhood we were in when we saw it and my dad said, "I'm not surprised. Drug lords can afford nice things." It's sad but he's probably right.







It was a cool bike, though and the owner was really nice. He even offered to give us a ride back to the boat on it or let Gabe take it for a spin but we politely declined. We didn't need to be picked up by the Federalis for not having Mexican licenses and put in jail there. Don't nobody wanna go to jail in Mexico! I did see the Federalis though and even they were very nice and let me take their picture.

Military Man





I digress from my honeymoon extravaganza for just a moment to give a little shout out to my brother, Dallas. He just joined the army and he left on Tuesday morning for boot camp in North Carolina. I wish I could say that I'm happy but, truthfully, it breaks my heart a little. I wonder how my sweet baby boy who I use to take swimming every day is now a soldier. It seriously blows my mind. I am, however, very proud of him and excited about the opportunities available to him now. I miss him already and he can't call home or email for a couple months. He can only write letters and we won't have his mailing address for two weeks. This will be the longest I've ever gone without talking to him and it's bugging me. Everyone remember Dall and all the other sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, dads and moms that are so far from home during this turbulent time. Keep them in your prayers, pray that they'll come home soon.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Honeymoon I: Our State Room

Our first day of our honeymoon we spent on the boat because we were travelling that day. We just layed out by the pool and got settled into our room and all that stuff. I get motion sick really easily so I took Dramamine the whole time to quell my motion sickness. It worked as far s settling my stomach but I could still really feel the movement of the boat and I was VERY dizzy whenever we were moving. I kept bumping into the walls and banging my shoulder on stuff. One time I stood up from the table at lunch and I tipped right over. gabe caught me and stood me back up but I had a really hard time with that. Every day when we got back to our room, the housekeeping staff had made a different animal out of towels and left them on the bed. We took pictures of them. They're really cool. Here's some pictures.

These are pictures of our state room. It was really nice and cozy. There is a second room with some bunk beds in it but we just used that room to store our suit cases.
Our "towel creation" on the first day was a bear.
A pig.
Some kissing swans.
A monkey.


An elephant.

Monday, March 12, 2007

A Triumphant Return


Gabe and I got married last weekend and our wedding was GREAT. It was so much fun! We left on Sunday for a cruise to Mexico and the entire trip was so stellar. We had a great time together. I got REALLY dizzy from the boat and it just started to wear off tonight so I decided it's time to put up my first post on our adventure. So, here I am, humming the song Brick House and typing away. That song was played every 7 minutes on the cruise. The other two songs that were played were Mercy Me and She Bangs. I'll be singing those songs forever. I have tons of stories to tell you guys and I got pictures to back them all up so the next few weeks will be all about me.
The first day of our cruise we were at sea so we just hung out on the boat and layed out by the pool. There is a lot to do on the boat. We watched comedy shows and ate out and all kinds of things. There's even a casino. We don't really like to gamble but we played roulette for 5 minutes and I won $5! It is a very cool experience to be out in the middle of the sea where all you can see is water.
The sunsets are spectacular. More to come!!!