Monday, October 3, 2016

Bahamas - 10 year anniversary trip

Ben and I finally went on our 10 year anniversary trip!
 Just 10 months late. 
Ben started a brand new job the week of our anniversary so we postponed it a little. We debated a ton about where we would go but finally decided on the Bahamas! The additional months of waiting just gave us more excitement and anticipation for the trip! 

We decided on an all-inclusive hotel called the Melia on the island of Nassau. It was a perfect place for us. Overall, the hotel was kind of old and in need of a little face lift and not really a place I would ever take my kids. (The Atlantis is the place for that.) BUT, we purchased a package called The Level which was a higher end all-inclusive package and it truly was awesome. 
 The food was amazing, room was amazing, staff and service was amazing. We would definitely go back on The Level package again. 
Our trip was four nights. The longest I have ever been away from my kids but it was perfect. Just enough time to feel rested and relaxed. 

Our trip started out a little dramatic because after we had already checked in for our early morning flight, we got notice of a hurricane warning in the Bahamas. We were scheduled to leave Friday morning to come back Tuesday afternoon at 1:00pm. The National Hurricane Center was showing Hurricane Matthew scheduled to hit the Bahamas starting Tuesday at 2:00pm. 
We panicked a little. 
 We toyed with cancelling our trip all together. 

 Thankfully, my parents had generously gifted us AAdvantage miles for our trip and we easily moved our flight without penalty to Tuesday morning at 9:30am. 
That made us feel a little better...and we decided to go. 
Early morning flight to the Bahamas! 
Our Level hotel room was awesome.
Pool view
 View of the Atlantis from our room
Toasting to making it to there! 
This trip was all about relaxing. 
 My view all day every day...the beach and a book. 
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Ben had the same view. The local guys selling on the beach walked by everyday and told us to go visit a library instead of the beach. 
 We read a lot.
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 Lots of selfies when you are on vacation just the two of you. 

We camped in the same spot every day reserved for The Level guests and had the same waiter, Fredrick, all day every day.
 He made sure we were well fed and hydrated and chatted with Ben a lot. 
 We were friends by the end. 

We kept asking him lots of questions about where he and the locals would go when the Hurricane hit. He said that traditionally the Bahamas has been pretty lucky and that Cuba and Haiti usually get pretty hard and the storms usually calm down before they hit the Bahamas.

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We took a bus into town one day and explored the local markets, a place called the Fish Fry and the cruise ship grounds
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Sewing Kinley's name on her purse 
 More dinner selfies 
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 The BEST breakfast view 
 Beach selfie

It was pretty windy our entire trip due to the hurricane rolling in but we had very little rain. 
 Like maybe 30 minutes the whole trip during the day. 
It rained at night a little when we were already inside but, the hurricane gave us very little trouble at all.
 However, when we started seeing the bags of sand come out to block the doors and the Hurricane Matthew Advisory notices start going up in the elevator,that made us pretty ready to go home.
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 We had free Wifi all over the resort so we could Facetime when we wanted and got the sweetest pics and knew our kids were safe and having a blast with all the grandparents. IMG_0794 
Free room service appetizers before a late dinner....something we could never do if we had our kids with us.
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Our flight home was smooth and easy and we were SO thankful to get home to our babies and out of the Bahamas safely before the storm. 
 However, I did leave with a twinge of guilt. 
We got to leave and go some place safe but SO many did not. 
So many were hit by tragedy and loss with this giant Hurricane. 

Fredrick was right that Haiti got the worst of the storm. 
I was glued to the news about the Hurricane because it almost affected me. 
How selfish. 
What about all the other storms, hurricanes, disasters that don't nearly affect me?
Where is my heart during those times? 
It was a moment to really look at my heart and reflect and I didn't love what I was seeing. 
 I am praying my reaction and feelings and actions are different as a result. I am thankful Jesus' love is greater than mine and he covers my sinful heart.  And I know I can't change on my own.  Only He can change me and I am thankful He can!

Overall, I am beyond thankful for a few days of uninterrupted time with my man. 
Gosh, I love him. 
He's gone a lot with work these days. Mostly day trips but a few overnights. 
We were getting our bags off the conveyor belt back at home and I had tears in my eyes.
 I told him "I am not ready to share you again." 
 It's true. 
 And I am thankful he is mine. 

 The GREATEST gift God gave me is Ben. He changes me, challenges me, loves me well, makes me laugh, and points me straight to Jesus. 
What a gift. 
I am praying for more and more and more decades together. 
 I am thankful it will be with him.

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