Sunday, January 31, 2016

Cruzin with Carnival, a 5 day trip on the Fabulous Paradise!

Sometimes you just got to be with family!  3 sisters and a Mom!! Moms 86, and quite takes 3 of us to keep her under control on a cruise!
We weren't 10 minutes on the ship when Mom spied just the right slot machine!  

We knew we were in trouble!

It was then off to our inside cabin to drop off the luggage, and head out to the pool deck for sail-away! 

3 of us wore stripes! ( that's just how families are sometimes!)

From the upper level you can see channelside, home of the cruise ships that sail from Tampa!

Make time to tour the S.S. American Victory, built between 1943-1946. A wonderful museum to view how the sailors, soldiers, and airman lived during WWII

Ahhhh... but back to business...a sail-away drink is a must!

Dancing to start off the cruise doesn't hurt either! We have no rhythm..but who cares! we'll never see any of these people again!

What to do on the first sea day? Why paint of course! As seasoned cruisers, we always travel with our watercolors....

And the views are spectacular! We found an ideal place in the back of the Buffet! Naturally, as lunchtime approached, we had to pack up and leave the table for those who wanted to dine....good shipboard

I can't take credit for this picture, It was my sister Jeans discovery.. She actually did a painting of this view, and it is beautiful!

After lunch and a long walk around the ship...( we had left Mom in the Casino..), all 4 of us met up for afternoon tea....a lovely assortment of tea sandwiches, scones with devonshire cream, and of course desserts!  

Formal nights are always fun!

Especially when you are photo bombed!

just the 3 of us....Mom is in the casino...( do you see a pattern here?)

Finally!! We are off to our first stop in Grand Cayman! We have been there many times, done the Stingray thing, snorkeled, swam. and beached this time...with our Mother in tow...we just did a tour of the little town.

Lots of little shops and restaurants

Everything is so colorful!

Lovely gardens around every corner, and the kids will love the cannons!

And a darling historical museum...Please don't miss quaint,
only a few dollars for entry, and it supports the efforts of the local historical society!

With a lovely video that recalls the history of this island... sometimes we forget that, in our haste to be tourists.

A view of the Harbor from the upstairs window

Old bones and artifacts!! Kids will love this place!

After a hard day, we hit the Jacuzzi....just the 3 of us! ( I don't even want to tell you where Mom is!)

Cozumel.....Been there, done that, so we just stayed in the port area for Lunch, and some high power shopping! NOT!...Watched a show put on by the locals...

Sat in swing to have a drink at a cute little place called Fat Tuesday...

Such a nice view of the ships!

And of course have a cold beer and Lunch! You may not recognize the sassy lady in the middle...My Mom! The casinos were closed! And she LOVES Mexican food!! 

Such a cute little place, good food, and reasonable prices in the comfort of the port area!
My sister did a blog on Fat Tuesdays with pictures...stop by for a look!

My baby sis trying to escape in Moms wheelchair! 
Having waaaaaay to much fun!

And we're having fun watching her!

I don't believe that for a minute!!

Lovely view from the top of the atrium...

Even the carpets are colorful! What IS that shadow??

Last night......If only Mom were here...Oh wait, she's in the Casino having the time of her life! You go girl!!!

Friday, January 29, 2016

Salmon river rafting ....Oh what a trip!

Never in my wildest dreams, did this avid cruiser, think she would spend 6 days and 5 nights river rafting..... No showers, no hot water, no indoor plumbing!!!  Just 6 glorious days rafting down a wild river! After a few days no one noticed if you hadn't shaved your legs, been wearing the same clothes for days on end, Or brushed your teeth..( and just for the record.....I did!)
     No one blinked an eye when you headed for the potty...( usually a lonely walk into the woods in full view of everyone!!) or headed to the river to pee....we were all in the same boat, and no one cared about the niceties of conventional daily life... I loved it!!
     No make-up, no worrying about what to wear ( as I had usually slept in my clothes)  and last but not least, all pretensions were swept aside, and we were free to be ourselves!!

This glorious trip started in Salmon Idaho...
A small frontier town along the Salmon river... 

This little historic town was full of cute little shops, and cafes...found a place that served a great curry! How about that!

We stayed at the Sacajawea Inn, a nice circa 1945 motel. so cute, with individual cottages, all decorated with kitschy murals that we just loved! Not to mention the knotty pine!

We arrived at the airport just outside of 
Salmon to meet up with the rest of our Party.....How cute is this place!

Image result for salmon idaho
At last! Our first view of the river just before we were to shove off!!

The views from the raft were spectacular, as we began our 6 day journey!

Quite different than the usual views for this Florida gal!

We camped out along the river each night! Fortunately, the advance raft had already arrived, and set up our tents! Cold drinks were waiting, and we could smell dinner cooking! After unpacking we settled down along the river with glasses of wine in hand, and big grins on our faces as we realized that we had survived the first day!
Sand, sand, everywhere! I thought I had escaped Florida!!

How about waking up to this view every day!

After one day, I still looked good! ( there will be no posting of later pictures!) hehe

Coffee in hand, fellow travelers awaiting the gourmet breakfast! The food was awesome, ranging from brie stuffed french toast, to omelets filled with exotic stuffing's.

Walter was loving the start of each day...

We stopped along the river, for some of the best picnic lunches I ever ate!!!
We sure looked forward to this rest stop every day! Lunch and a swim! what could be better than that!!
By the end of the trip we were unshaven, coffee drinking, food guzzling refugees!
happy as clams!

It was hard to say goodby!..

I have to say it was one of the greatest adventures I ever had.....and I would do it again in a heartbeat! Hats off to Momentum river rafting for making this trip so memorable!