Friday, February 22, 2008

And the final round . . .

In the last post, there were some pictures of us on a beach with lots of other tourists. Well, we also had the opportunity to take a day trip out to some more remote, outlying islands. We wanted to get away from the crowds and do some snorkeling as well as enjoy some more natural, unspoiled beauty. After a turbulent speedboat ride (I never knew how huge and choppy those ocean waves were! Chloe cried and Clara Anne threw up!), we persevered and landed on this deserted island. John and our friend Karl went out snorkeling right away, though Clara Anne wanted to join them! "Look Mommy, I can put it on by myself! Well, sort of . . . "
There were tons of seashells, coral, sand crabs, and other interesting things on the shore. Chloe had a great time picking things up and examining them! The sun was intense--I left her sundress on over her swimsuit for most of the day.
The boat had to put down anchor a little ways out and then we waded in to the shore. It was really enjoyable and peaceful to be in a totally undeveloped place! We truly relaxed.

Simply gorgeous. Being out in the midst of the vast ocean reminded me of so many Scriptures and truths about the immensity of our God, His power and greatness. What a mighty God we serve!

The snorkeling in this area was very good. I had a hard time getting started, fearing water in my face or nose and feeling a bit tentative with the equipment. But once I learned to relax and trust, I enjoyed getting a glimpse of the underwater life! Unlike at a zoo, fish don't seem to notice that you're there and so we were able to observe many kinds of tropical fish and some beautiful coral without feeling like we were disturbing them. Our friends Karl and Chris played with the girls so that John and I could snorkel hand-in-hand. What an experience! (I almost forgot I was pregnant in the buoyancy of the salt water!)
Here's the whole family before we headed for home again. (That's the closest you'll get to seeing me in my bathing suit!)

Just a few more pool pictures--Chloe finally got brave enough by the end of our time to get into the water on her own. Look at that mischievous smile!

Clara Anne's motto: "You can never have too many floaties!"

And a couple of pictures from our way home. We stopped in Hong Kong for a few days and enjoyed a trip to Fat Angelo's Italian Restaurant. Wow, they take their name seriously! Look at my belly after just one meal! :)

And, one final trip to Toys R'Us. They had a huge Lightning McQueen on display and so both of the girls were excited to get their pictures taken with it! We had more fun just looking and playing around the store than buying things--we only ended up with a small car for each of the girls. Good thing too, since our luggage was already bursting at the seams!

I hope you enjoyed the photo journey through some of our vacation times! Needless to say, after being gone for almost a month, we are very happy to be back at home and settling into normal life and routines again. My girls have taken long naps every day this week, I'm fighting off a cold, and in general we are all recovering from a month on the road. It's always fun to travel, but home is just that much sweeter when the traveling is done. We're thankful for safety over many miles and glad to be home, sweet home!


From groans to glory said...

I did enjoy your trip pictures!! So wonderful! Also learned some new words by reading your blog: snorkel;buoyancy;etc. Xiexie!

SingerMamaMelody said...

So fun to see your beach pictures! You guys look like you are really having a great time. :) I bet the swimming felt good for preggy mama...