Archive for the ‘Vacation’ Category

Wow… it’s been several months, very long and very challenging months.. happy to have the start of a new year upon us!

Since I last posted… Acadia National Park reopened!  The government still has some major issues to resolve.. but, whatever… I wrapped up my last (allegedly) of five full seasons in Bar Harbor, and New England, moved back to Plant City, started in my new role as the Operations Manager in Tampa, celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas, and my thirtieth birthday!  Whew!

The season in Tampa started mid-November, although I felt like I had been on the go from mid-August!  It’s been a challenging few months moving into my new role, constantly learning and adjusting… it’s been a mix of highs and lows as I learn to manage people, and it’s amazing to think that there is still more to learn!  Crazy, right?  Extremely thankful that the season in Tampa is seasonal… for one, I know the itch to travel is going to hit soon!

Richard has been traveling a lot for work, so it feels like we have switched roles..  He headed to Virginia with his father for Thanksgiving (to go hunting, of course) and spent time with Grandma Jane and other family, while I headed over to Mom’s for a relaxing week, and Alex joined us for a lovely meal at home.

After much traveling for work, Richard was finally home a few days before Christmas, and we headed back over to Mom’s and crashed at her place for a few days.  It was quite nice to relax, celebrate Christmas, eat delicious foods and not have to clean up!  We didn’t do any decorating this year… mainly because Richard was out of town and I am not a fan of going into the attic, but I knew I didn’t want to have to clean up either!  Mom got a fabulous black Christmas tree this year, and decorated with white and silver, it was gorgeous!  At work, the Royal Caribbean Brilliance of the Seas helped us to celebrate the holidays too, we decorated the terminal and the team wore fun hats… the ship gave us a delicious cake too!

A most fabulous end to 2013 was my fabulous dirty thirty birthday party!  (this deserves a post of its’ own!) ….and I am waiting on the pics from Alex too!

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What a week!  No, make that three weeks, it has been.

Life this fall has been ever so busy…. which I guess is better than the alternative… lol

I had the awesome opportunity to participate in Royal Caribbean’s Train the Trainer on board the Majesty of the Seas from September 9 thru 13.. what a beautiful ship!  Royal Caribbean hosted a week long training seminar that concentrated on the Oz Principle, Living Above the Line and Thinking Outside the Box.  It was a great week, and I am excited to share what I learned with the rest of the team at home… I hope they benefit as much as I did.

I won’t bore you with the details of the training… but here are some great pics of the trip!

We joined the vessel Monday in Miami, after an early morning and several really long hours on a flight, I finally made it.

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Tuesday we were in Nassau, Bahamas, and got to enjoy an afternoon stroll around town and a great tour of Atlantis!  Some of the girls and I headed back on board and had dinner at Johnny Rockets… I haven’t eaten there in years!

Wednesday was CocoCay, Bahamas, RCCL’s private island… we hung out on the beach and soaked in the sun, it was beautiful…

Thursday was Key West.. I hadn’t been there since Richard and I were dating!  We had lunch at Sloppy Joe’s – YUM!

Friday was back to Miami, and back to Bar Harbor.. a great week, and I am definitely recharged for the fall!

Last week, I was blessed with some time off work, good weather and family who were up for doing a little exploring!

I headed down to Dover, NH, and we headed out to see the local area.

LOST RIVER GORGE

Wednesday, August 21:  What a cool experience! Located in North Woodstock, which is located among the White Mountains, Lost River Gorge is so peaceful and scenic.  Driving up, I certainly did not know what to expect, and was thrilled with what we found!  It had been several years since Uncle Billy and Co. had been to Lost River Gorge, and we all enjoyed the experience.  We took a scenic drive through the White Mountains, and stopped at a beautiful scenic overlook along the Kancamagus Highway… the view was just amazing!

OLD ORCHARD BEACH

Thursday, August 22:  On my list, as I may not be back in Bar Harbor next year, I wanted to see Old Orchard Beach!  I started collecting older postcards of places I have been about two years ago, and the postcards representing Old Orchard Beach were just so unique, I couldn’t wait to get there in person.  After talking about it all summer, Uncle Billy and Co headed out to Old Orchard Beach for lunch, a walk along the seashore and wandered through some shops in town.  I actually stuck my feet in the Atlantic Ocean!  (First and last time, it’s COLD!!!)

On Thursday night, Brisbee and I headed up to Portland, where I was meeting the HAL Veendam to work their maiden call.

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What an awesome week!  This will be another one of those multi-part posts, as there is just too much fun to share!

This years’ 10 week stint in Bar Harbor started on August 15, and it was a busy three day double ship weekend… Uncle Billy and Co. headed up to spend the weekend with me, and we had a great time.  So many pictures… best way to share the fun!!

BIPLANE RIDE W/ ACADIA AIR TOURS

Saturday, August 17, was awesome… we finally had the opportunity to take our biplane ride!  After watching Richard and his father take their trip, I was soooo excited to go myself!  Nervous, as I didn’t truly know what to expect.. we climbed into the plane, snapped and tightened our seatbelts, and put on those headsets, just like you see in the movies!   We had a 20 minute or so ride ahead of us…  and it was so amazing to see the island and the harbor from the air!  It’s amazing to compare all of the different perspectives.. from the end of the dock, to the bridge of a cruise ship, to a bird’s eye view!  We flew over Bar Harbor, Winter Harbor, Prospect Harbor, multiple lighthouses, Frenchman’s Bay, and Acadia National Park.  We could see Cadillac Mountain and Eagle Lake… it was just amazing!  I think my jaw was on the floor most of the trip.. so incredible…

GREAT MAINE LUMBERJACK SHOW

Saturday night, we headed out to the Great Maine Lumberjack Show.   Dad and I have been multiple times in years past, and it’s always lots of fun.  Timber Tina, who owns the show, was in the show that night, and it was as funny as always.  About halfway through, the kids get a chance to go up on the stage and try their hand at the crosscut saw!  Hannah seemed to really enjoyed it, and was awarded a certificate of participation for her efforts. 

What a day Monday was!  Blessed to spend the day with two awesome ladies, my sister-in-law Kristin, and cousin-in-law Jenna, and their little people, what fun we had!

Arriving at Rainbow River about noon, we headed out on the four hour float.. which actually took us about five and a half hours.  It was bliss, and with alternating between sun and clouds, it wasn’t too hot, and we were really able to enjoy the cool spring water.  It’s been years since I was tubing… and it was so fun to make some new memories.  I wish Richard and the other boys could have been there to join us, but there is always next time!

Some snaps:

Courtesy of the best momma in the world, we headed to the Doubletree Beach Resort on Redington Beach for two nights and three days of sun, sand, and relaxation!

It was awesome, the weather left a little bit to be desired… but the sun came out for most of it, and it was great!  Long walks on the beach, drinks under the umbrella, cool water in the pool, and beautiful sunsets… we couldn’t ask for more.  I had the opportunity to use my new water camera… and got some cool shots!

Wednesday, July 24, we headed out and checked in early… and had lunch at the hotel, overlooking the beach.. the pina colada’s were great!  After changing, we found lounge chairs at the pool, and settled in for an afternoon of sun.  Dinner that night was at the hotel, inside at the bar, while waiting on Alex and a friend to arrive.  Thursday morning was an early morning, headed out to the pool for a long day relaxing by the pool!  After finding the perfect spot, in the sun, we settled in for a day to chill!  We brought our own beverages, which made the trip even more fun!  Two wonderful walks on the beach, and lots of laughs after stepping in unseen holes, we got some great pics, and even better memories.  Dinner that night was at The Conch Republic, http://www.conchrepublicgrill.com, and it was pretty good!

My first trip to the beach (in Florida) this summer!

Richard suggested heading out to Ft. DeSoto on Saturday, July 13, and spending the day in the sun and sand.

It was a beautiful day, we stopped to pick up sandwiches on the way out, and sat under our beach tent while enjoying the other dogs around us, and the waves crashing in the forefront.  The dogs were not so thrilled about the sand at first, as always…. but Oscar really got into rolling around in it…. he looked a little like cat poo in the litter box by the time he was done.  It was hilarious!  Brisbee jumped into the water by herself, she hates to be left on the beach while Richard and I are in the water.  Oscar was less interested, and patrolled the beach and manned our tent instead.