Island living is, at the root, slow living but, mannnnn, does it come to a blissful halt when you get to a small town. We traveled from Toa Alta, on the north side of the island, to Salinas on the south side of the island. A 62 mile drive that took about 2 hours thanks to traffic. I just took in all the sights. If you follow me on instagram you probably saw about 20 videos on my story of nothing but, what I like to call, ‘views from the car‘.
It has still been raining off and on during our trip but that’s to be expected. While I love the tropical weather, now that we are two weeks in, I’m finding myself craving some good ol’ indoor/AC-powered time. I am currently sitting in the master suite, in a side chair, taking full advantage of the AC unit hitting me full blast….all the while my husband is still sitting outside and soaking up a different kind of experience.
This has been the longest trip away from home with Mily & RJ in tow and, lemme tell you, it has been full of ups and downs. During long-weekend trips, they both try really hard to be on their best best behavior and (for the most part) they knock it out of the park. This trip has been much longer than what is typical and the kids have settled into the idea that there are ways to take advantage of this change in environment. Which, in reality, there are. The family is so happy to see them; so much so that the kids are running the show day in and day out. Things I would never let them do at home (stand ( and jump!) on the couch, for example) is “ok” here. Imagine all the things kids get away with at grandma + grandpa’s house. Now imagine grandma and grandpa multiplied by 5. That’s my life right now. So, needless to say, what with the heat and boundaries being bent to the extreme, I’m a little worn out.
We did a lot of mini-adventures while in Salinas. The pace is slow and delicious but we were also a long drive from anything other than the beach. We planned out a few things and spaced them out to one trip a day. We would spend 1-2 hours driving to our location, spend just enough time to get the kids hot and tired and then spend 1-2 hours driving back. Wash, Rest, Repeat.
We visited a sunflower garden and, while it wasn’t near its old glory (pre-Maria), it was still very pretty. Milly is definitely a flower child so she was super happy to see all the life-size flowers. I even tried to take a video of her peeking out through the flowers but as soon as she stepped into the field, she took off running in all her excitement. Aaaah, what a life to be 4 years old and surrounded by flowers that you can’t see over. I wonder if she felt like Alice in Wonderland? Ha! We love that movie.
We also spent a day out on our family’s boat; about eight wonderful hours. Riding on and helping his godfather pilot the boat is RJ’s most memorable experience from our last trip in January, 2017. He was so excited to be on Madagascar again and I was even more happy about the fact that he had the memory to draw from. For me, that is what traveling with my kids is about: making those memories that will stick with them for years and years to come.
It’s about nine-thirty on a Friday night here in Salinas and, once I’m done with this post, I will be packing up everyone’s luggage. We are heading back to the north-side of the island tomorrow and will be there for the remainder of our trip!
In addition to my birthday (Aug. 27), Red & I will be celebrating 6 years together next week! We don’t have any plans. This trip was the plan! Maybe we will head out on our own for a few hours and enjoy some time alone or maybe the kids will convince us to take them with… Who knows.
Until next time!
We are officially one week into our vacation time in Puerto Rico. Man, oh man, do I love this island and its people and the sea air and food and (of course) my family. My aunt picked us up from the airport. Actually, my aunt, uncle and cousin came in two cars for us. One car for us, one car for the luggage because, you probably know well that, traveling with children can require a lot.
We went to the kids godparents house and relaxed for the rest of the day. We ate some good food and drank some even better coffee. We all settled in and I quickly focused in on trying to use my Spanish as best as I could. Let me tell you, it has been rough. LOL. I’ll give myself credit in the sense that I understand more than I had previously accepted. I do not, on the other hand, know how to speak it very well…..like, at all. Luckily the kids godparents, as well as their kids, know english well.
In the past week, we have gone to Dorado beach, San Juan, Old San Juan, and all along the southeast side of the island to enjoy the views. This has been a very uneventful trip so far and I am not complaining. Actually, I’m really enjoying myself. We all are. Traveling to Puerto Rico, for me, has always been about family so I have never really taken the time to do a bunch of “tourist” activities. I thought this trip might be different now that the kids are a little older but it’s looking like that will not be the case. We had a few plans fall through because the island is still struggling to bounce back from Hurricane Maria. There is still so much to be done and Puerto Rico will never be the same but the people are so strong and hold on to such high and content spirits; it really is an amazing thing to witness.
The last time we visited Puerto Rico was a little over a year ago. Red’s birthday is in January and celebrated his birthday with my family on the island. It was a quiet and simple trip and this trip is looking like it will be something of the same.
I definitely plan on taking the kids to the children’s museum and (maybe) the sunflower farm. The only thing that is for sure is beach time. We are soaking up the sun and while the kids don’t particularly like hot weather, they are 100-percent happy with being outside, no matter the temperature, as long as there is water play involved.
We are planning to drive to the other side of the island in a couple of days and that will give us a new opportunity for adventure.
Until next time!