Disney and St Augustine

Hello all

We have had no internet for about a week now which feels very strange! But also good to be away from that.

We had 5 days in Disney which were great (very busy though). As we stayed in a Disney hotel they do these “magic hours” which means the parks are open earlier or later for hotel guests- one day we had the option to stay until 2am! I am not one for rollercoasters, which is why I love Disney so much- so many fun rides- Soarin’ is my fave, where you sit in a sort of chairlift, and get lifted up in front of a big TV screen and the film shows all parts of California (also you get the smells of things like the orange groves or pine trees as you “soar” over them”)- so gentle but also amazing. We also managed to get caught in some spectacular heavy rain storms (and we took a poncho with us, only to leave it in the suitcase and then the car- we only had it with us one day when we needed it!).

Then we drove to St Augustine, which is further up the east coast of Florida, and spent a lovely couple of days there. We stayed right in the centre by the old town so we could walk everywhere. The town has a lot of history, and a caste/ fort which we walked around. Plus loads of veggie (and even vegan) dining options. Plus gourmet popsicles (ice lollys). Look at the website and guess how long it took me to choose! Hint- I am terrible at decisions!

Right, well we are in Savannah now, so off for a little walk around the town (and I got very excited when I saw that there is a Paula Dean shop here! I do not think I would ever cook anything she makes- she made oatmeal and added butter and cream to it, so I think maybe it is the novelty of it!)- so catch you guys later.


Swimming with dolphins!


Thanks for all the comments on my last post. This is another quick one (no photos yet I am afraid) to say how I have been getting on.

Today was our trip to Discovery Cove (which Andy meant to surprise me with at Christmas, but then as our flight got cancelled etc etc it was no longer a surprise). I had no idea what to expect but it was amazing! Here is a (hopefully) quick run-down. And please excuse any typos because I can only see half of what I type.

We arrived just after 8am for “check in”. Here we were given ID tags and a map, and told the time of our dolphin swim. Then we went to have breakfast (all food and drink are included in the day)- a massive choice for meat eaters, but not much veggie stuff, but anyway. Then we changed into our swim stuff and picked up our wet-suit vest things. You also get given special suncream to wear which is safe to use with the animals. There was lots to see and do- we went in the lazy river first (which I much preferred to Disney lazy rivers as you could actually swim in them instead of lying in those rubber ring things). At one point it went through an aviary and we could see loads of pretty birds by the water. Then we got some goggles (Andy used the snorkle but I had breathing through the tube like that) and went into the lagoon pool. This was cold (at first) and salty, and filled with beautiful tropical fish and also massive sting rays! At first I was a little freaked out by the fish swimming right by me, but once I realised they would not touch you I was fine. We must have spent over an hour in that place alone. Then we went for a little walk (Andy took some photos) and we went into the aviary to see the birds. I was most excited to see aย kookaburra.

Then it was time for the dolphin encounter. We had to have a little talk first, the we waded into the dolphin lagoon with a trainer, and it was just amazing. We all got to do the hand signals to encourage the dolphin to wave, spin, splash etc. The dolphin had a baby who was about 2 years old, which kept swimming near and copying what his mum was doing which was also so sweet. We got to feed the dolphin fish, and stroke her (and they also made us kiss her for a photo op, which I thought was a little weird but anyway). Then we swum out to the deep part and had a dolphin tow back to shore! Exciting! While other people were having their turns the trainers were talking to us and showing us hand signals and things. Then a lot of dolphins came from all around the cove and leapt up in the air all together, and swum around together a bit. It lasted about 45 mins I think, but it went by so quickly! I was excited about it, but also a little apprehensive as I had no idea what to expect. I also thought it might end up being a bit of a queue- touch the dolphin one after another, but it was nothing like that at all. We were always told to move out of their way, and it really was us going into their space- if they didn’t want to do something they would swim away, stuff like that.

Anyway, after that it was time for lunch (I think it was gone 2pm by then). The veggie option was pasta with tomato sauce, but again loads of meat choices. There were also pots of roasted veggies, different salads (lucky I checked as they had bacon bits on them!), fries, fruit, and all sorts of cakes. I had some roasted veggies (with the pasta), fruit and Andy and I shared some carrot cake- we did not want to have too much as we wanted to swim some more in the afternoon. While we ate lunch a steel pan band started playing which was great.

We decided to buy a CD of our photos- we never normally buy those photos at all, and it was really expensive, but we figured that we could print one out, or put them on our calendar and stuff. (But our netbook does not have a CD drive, otherwise I would be loading them up right now!). So something for you all to look forward to ๐Ÿ˜‰

We sat in the shade for a bit, before one last long swim in the ray lagoon. Then I went for a shower (and in the showers there were massive pump bottles of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, lotion, plus hairdryers and stacks of towels to use), and then it was time to come back. It shuts at 5pm, although we were there a little after that.

Anyway, it was a brilliant day- busy but relaxed. The park was lovely as it was not very crowded and really everything you needed was there.

So there you go for the little update ๐Ÿ™‚ We are off to Disney tomorrow for a few days.

Would you like to swim with dolphins? Or have you done something like that?

A quick hello

Hello ๐Ÿ™‚

Just a quick update here on how things are going (I have taken some photos but right now the camera is charging so no pics just yet). After our long flight to Miami (and sitting on the tarmac in Miami during a massive rain/thunderstorm because it was raining too hard for the people to get the ramps out or something) and then the longest immigration queues ever (with staff who were very friendly and chatty and not at all in a hurry even though the queues got longer and longer) and then a long drive, we made it to Key West.

We had a lovely few days there, relaxing and wandering around the town. ย On our drive back up to Miami we stopped off at a turtle hospital which was really lovely and interesting, but also really sad because of all the turtles injured by human actions. Seriously- check out the website as there is a turtle (Sara) with an awful injury- loads of people are adding to the rewards as they hope to find out who did it. Good news is that we saw the turtle and she is loads better already.

Miami has been fun too- more wandering, and spotting film locations for Burn Notice (anyone else a fan?) and Dexter (well, first few episodes anyway).

Right, that is enough of an update- hope everyone is having a lovely summer (and staying away from those awful riots in the UK)- catch you later dudes.

Accepting what you have got


I think often we are all good at dishing out advice, but not following it ourselves. During my trip away I caught myself in that very situation. I will explain. One of my friends has a lovely figure (actually, they all do!)- full in the bust, quite curvy and looks amazing in fitted dresses etc. We were shopping and she kept on picking up big tops and skinny jeans and going to another friend (who is very very slim and was rocking the skinny jeans look) “I wish I had the figure to wear skinny jeans and tops like you”. I said to her “you have a lovely figure, you should love what you have as I bet there are loads of people out there who would love to look amazing in those dresses like you do” and she admitted I was right. I was impressed with my attitude, but really, that was not my attitude. I too was wishing I could wear skinny jeans, but they do not suit me!

I also have been guilty before of trying on clothes, they don’t suit me, and so then I get a little fed up about my figure. This time I tried on loads of clothes in one shop, and guess what. Some of them fitted and looked good. Some fitted and did not look good. Some of them didn’t fit. What did I learn? Clothes flatter different people. And my ultra slim friend tried on some of the same clothes as me (well, in a different size) but some of them did not suit her. So I decided that I am going to try and make sure that I accept what I have. Last week I had a little crisis of confidence when shopping for swim stuff (we are going to Discovery Cove and so need swimwear for the day), but after this trip I went home, tried on the stuff I have and decided that it looks fine. I have decided that I want to enjoy my holiday, and that I should take my own advice and accept myself. So that is what I am going to (try to) do. I hope you are all with me??

Back to general stuff- last night I went to body pump and decided to have some heavier dumbells for the shoulders track. I typically find it really hard, but this track the moves seem to be split more and I have found it a little easier, so I went for 3kg instead of 2kg for each arm (yeah, not heavy I know!) and I was prepared to swap back half way through to the lighter weights, but I managed it all the way through ๐Ÿ™‚ This morning I had a 10 mile run. I got very hot and felt like I was going super slow, but in fact I was a minute faster than last week. Still a few minutes slower than my fastest time but not bad.

I have been packing today (not taking any running stuff with me) and am getting excited! All going well this time tomorrow we will be driving down to Key West! Whoopie I love holidays!

I think we have internet access in some places so I might manage a few little updates. ย So have a fab few weeks, and (Florida style) see you later, alligators ๐Ÿ™‚

Pictures of Bristol


I worked out how to save the photos, so here are a few.

Cocktails on the first evening (although I don’t drink so had a lime soda. The bartender had the cheek to tell me it was a boring drink!).

Chepstow Castle in Wales. We walked across the bridge to England and from there you had lovely views of the castle and town.

Me on the bridge! I think I was confused as we thought that the flowers started half way (in the English half) but in fact they were just on the middle!

And Highclere Castle on the way home.

So there you go. ๐Ÿ™‚