Archive for the ‘Anguilla Beach Time’ Category

Boys Are Getting Bolder

June 11 – Friday

Friday was a completely lazy beach day for us. We tried to do a ride on the Glass Bottom boat to see fish, turtles, reefs, etc., but the travel guide we had said $20/ea and kids free. We got there and it was $40/ea and kids free for a short 30-40 minute ride. I tried to negotiate with the boat owner and he said he’d take $40 now and come get the other $40 from us at the Arawak the next day. Well, that is still $80 so that wasn’t any help.

Instead we rented snorkeling gear for $12 and Shauna and I had a blast snorkeling while the boys had fun in the sand and are getting bolder and bolder with the water. We got tons of snorkeling video that I’ll have to work through and find the best ones to put up.

We’ve also been working with Ezekiel in the pool. He’s now out of the inner tube and only wearing his arm swimmies. I had him hold onto the ladder and practice holding his breath under the water. Then I moved him away from the ladder by about a foot or so and let go of him and he doggy paddled back to the ladder. Until yesterday he’s wanted us to catch him when he jumped into the water so his head wouldn’t go under. After holding his breath by the ladder he decided he was ready. He jumped in with only the arm swimmies, without being caught, went under the water, resurfaced and doggy paddled to the ladder without any assistance. He’s come so far in less than two weeks!

For now, here are a couple of videos of the boys getting more comfortable with the water. Remember the one early on in our trip where I said, Who’s chasing who – and had Ezekiel running back and forth with the waves. Well, Gabriel was doing that exact same thing yesterday and we caught it on video! Ezekiel ventured out deeper into the water, up to his neck at times with the waves. One time he got knocked off his feet and couldn’t touch. He rotated around belly down and chin up like he’s been doing in the pool. He looked up at me with surprise and a tiny bit of fear. I made a paddling motion with my hands and he started paddling like in the pool and rode the wave back into where he could touch. I was so proud! Of course, I could have reached down and grabbed him if he was in serious trouble, but decided in that split second to see how he handled it and he did great! We stayed at the beach until 5pm, headed back to get cooled off in the pool and then cooked dinner in the room.

Anyway, here are a few videos including a sample of the Wednesday night acoustic guitar here at the Arawak.

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Beach, Shopping, and Interesting Food

June 9 – Wednesday

We had a nice morning, relaxing in our room and enjoyed a leftover meal of pasta marinara for lunch.  Then we headed to Shoal Bay Beach for a fun in the sand and water.  Gabriel was a hoot to watch at the beach.  He went right into the water, getting his feet wet, and then running away from the waves.  Then the waves would retreat and he would run towards them again and then run away when they were coming towards him.  He would squeal and laugh and he had a great time, finally (see it in our video coming soon).  He enjoyed playing in the sand and of course got it all over him.  He took a nap in his stroller as well.  Ezekiel and I played a new game in the water.  We both laid on our bellies in the shallow part of the water, mainly in the sand, feet toward the ocean and let the waves crash over us.  It was the most fun when the waves would be so strong that they moved us.  Sometimes we got so excited and tickled at ourselves that we swallowed some salt water, but it was so much fun!  Ezekiel said, “this is more fun than everything!”  Ezekiel and Josh did another fun game in the water by sitting Indian style on the sand in the shallow part facing the ocean, letting the waves crash over them .

While on the beach, I met a really nice couple from England, Mark and Celia.  They are leaving on Saturday and will have been here for 5 weeks then.  They were telling us of all the places to go, eating and shopping and entertainment, but were shocked at how much we already knew and how much we had already done.  We have already done some things that they wished that they had done, but didn’t find out about them in time.  We talked for at least 30 minutes.  So far we have met:  family of 4 from Germany, family of 6 from Pennsylvania, a couple from Rhode Island who lives here now, Tom from Canada (whom we’ve mentioned before), a couple from Connecticut, a lady from Florida (whose sister lives here), of course some Angullian’s,  and I’m sure we have left out someone.

So, after the beach, we cleaned up and went to Ripples for dinner.  They have an Early Bird Special on Wednesdays and Saturdays, for $12.  Their special Wednesday was “Fish and Chips” with peas and Indian Chicken Curry dish with chutney and a cream sauce to lessen the spiciness of it.  We got one of each and the boys split pasta alfredo.  However, the boys enjoyed my fish and fries more than their pasta, so they split a piece of fish, while I ate their pasta.  All-in-all we all got full on what we wanted.

After dinner, we went back to the Arawak Beach Inn and enjoyed the live music performance and then back to the room for bed.  It rained for about 5 minutes and one point, then another 5 minutes a little later.  Other that, it was a quiet night.

June 10 – Thursday

We didn’t get out of our room until around 10, but then headed to Le Bon Pain for breakfast at the French Pastry place we went to on Saturday.  We ordered the exact same thing, but then added a raisin cinnamon roll and instead of pineapple pastry, they had blueberry. This time we remembered to take photos.

After breakfast, we went to the Drug Store, which doesn’t even sell any kind of medicines.  No one is sure why they call it the “Drug Store” but they have for years, so I guess it stuck.  They had a lot of toys, t-shirts of all sizes that have Anguilla on them, lots of other souvenirs, etc.  It was a neat shop and I wished that we had gotten to enjoy it more, but the lady running the shop was watching us like a hawk after Ezekiel accidentally knocked a little wire thing over that was just in the way.  Then Gabriel was playing with a bunch of empty hangers and those were rattling around so one of the workers came running over for inspection and gave us a harsh look.  They weren’t doing any harm or breaking anything, just being boys.  So, instead of taking them out in the hot sun or wasting gas in the car, I decided to take them through the store to find them something to quietly do.  We found some books and puzzles and it kept them busy and quiet.  But, of course, the lady had to inspect that they weren’t getting into anything again.  So we high-tailed it out of there after she came over there and took away the one book Gabriel was looking at the puzzle Ezekiel was playing with. This was our only bad experience so far. Everyone else, by far, has been so nice and talkative.

So then we went to a couple of other stores and made sure the boys weren’t getting into anything so no one thought we were trouble makers.  Before we could stop to get any lunch, both boys had conked out in the car.  Josh went into the Roti Hut and ordered a beef roti and a chicken roti that came with mashed potatoes with some veggies stirred in and grilled plantains (see pictures).  It was really good, but we could only eat half, so there’s another lunch for us both.  We ate in the parking lot at Shoal Bay Beach so that the boys could finish their naps, but Gabriel woke up as soon as we got there.

After we ate, we drove back to the room and gave the boys their lunch, hoping they would finish their naps afterward.  However, after trying for an hour, we gave up and went to the pool.  Then for dinner we stayed in and made a simple chicken and rice dish and spent a quiet evening enjoying the cool breeze and the crashing waves of the ocean.  It’s beautiful here.  We love it!

Rendezvous Bay Beach And Videos

June 8 – Tuesday

The boys and I slept in until about 8:30 or 9 this morning, then Josh fixed pancakes for breakfast.  Then we headed off for Cuisinart Resort & Spa for the tour of the hydroponic farm (greenhouse).  Josh has put more details of the tour in the photos.  During the tour, I had to keep the noisy, playful, active boys away from the rest of the group so that everyone could hear what the tour guide was saying, so I missed a lot of what was said.  Anyhow, they gave us samples of cherry tomatoes and they were delicious.  Delicious enough that Gabriel ate 5.  He ate three right away and then was getting restless, so I went back and plucked 2 more off the vine to give him.  He loved them.

After the tour we had a nice picnic lunch under the trees on the grass.  The boys loved the picnic.  Ezekiel liked following the lizards around too and trying to catch them.  He is bound and determined to catch one.  Speaking of lizards we have found 2 lizards in our room so far (leave the door open except while sleeping).  I moved a suitcase close to Ezekiel’s bed and it jumped off and started running around.  Luckily Josh got 2 glasses and caught it (see photos “Around the Arawak).  Then another one was in my book after we got back to our room yesterday.  It was a tiny one and I closed the cover a little so I could show the boys on the porch and set it free, but I squished it and killed it.  Whoops.

Back on task . . . after our picnic we went to the beach down by the resort and were told you need a day pass in order to use the chairs and umbrellas.  We expected so since most chairs & umbrellas are for rent, but we have lucked out so far and not been charged anywhere. Not so here. We decided to just try somewhere else on the same beach, Rendezvous Bay, instead of having to pay.  Out of curiosity I asked how much the chairs and umbrellas were at the resort.  For a half day pass it was $200!  $200!  Are they out of their mind???  Who on earth would do that?  So we went just a little further down the beach and got the chairs for free – no umbrella needed because they were shaded by the coconut trees.  They had signs that they were for $5, but no one came to collect, so we got them for free.  How nice.  So, after a day of fun in the sun on the beach and in the water, we went to a couple of grocery stores, dipped in the pool, showered, and made marinara pasta and garlic bed.  We were worn out, so we all got to bed early.  What a good day.  It rained for about 5 minutes during the night, just like another night, but so far, no rain during the day.  HA for those of you wishing for us to have rain 20/30 days!

A little housekeeping – if you have seen our photos recently please check out all the categories, we’ve added a handful of new ones to each category and added one new category – Cuisinart Resort & Spa. If you have looked at photos recently then you can check out the new category and new ones this morning in beaches and exploring.

Here are some videos from our adventures over the past several days including Crocus Bay Beach, Rendezvous Bay Beach and a special performance of “She’ll Be Comin’ ‘Round the Mountain”. Josh tried making the videos a little higher quality, but the trade off means a larger file size and larger load times (don’t ask me). He said there is a 10 second buffer before each video will start to play. I’ve found it works best to click on the title, wait for it to start and click on the next title, wait for it to start, and keep going to the end. Then start over at the beginning and watch them all.

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Crocus Bay Beach

June 7 – Monday

Gabriel was woken up by the bright sun shining on his face before 6:30, so I wheeled his crib into the bathroom where it is quiet and quite a bit darker.  He slept for another hour or so and then took two more naps before we got to leave for the day – a nap after breakfast and a nap after lunch – so we had a late start.  In the morning, we sat outside on the porch and watched the birds dive for fish.  It was so neat to watch them soar over the water, looking for fish, and then dive into the water.  Then they would just float on the water for a while so they could eat or just relax.  The boys got a kick out of it.  Ezekiel and I went to the pool, which was delightful, during Gabriel’s nap after lunch.

We decided to go to a new beach called Crocus Bay Beach.  It was really easy to find and there was a store there and a couple of restaurants.  The store called Why Knot was featured in some magazines and some Anguilla books as a must-see shop since their product was the most original Caribbean piece on the island.  I got a top that can be worn 6 different ways and seems really easy to wear.  It was really neat.  Then we hoped into the water.  There were chairs and umbrellas for rent, but if you ate at the restaurant, you got them for free.  However since it was way past lunch and they were getting ready to close, we got to use them for free.  Monday was a new day for Gabriel.  He LOVED the sand!!  YIPPEE!!  He sat right down in it and started playing in it.  It was really hot sand, but neither of the boys seemed to mind.  They just used their buckets and shovels and sand molds and had a great time.  Of course they got our chairs all sandy as well, but that’s alright.

The bad thing about the water here was that it had a lot of rocks in the water until you get to a certain point and then it’s okay.  I wore my sandals in the water, but then you get rocks in your sandals and that hurts just as much.  So once you are in, it’s fine, but getting in and out is a pain, literally!  While I was in the water, their was the little fish that kept following me around everywhere I went.  I tried shaking him off by splashing a bunch, dunking myself under the water, swimming away – everything – but I could not shake that fish . . . until Josh came into the water!  I finally got rid of it, for a while, as it went to Josh.  He didn’t want it around him for fear it would go up his trunks and stay or nibble on him!  HA!  We laughed so much about this little, tiny, harmless fish that would not leave us alone.  We tried to ignore it, but couldn’t.  The little guy finally left us alone when this huge school of fish came charging at us, running right into our legs, and swimming as fast as they could.  We screamed and laughed and got out of there!  It was hilarious!  We got back in a while later and no fish were around this time.

So, we packed up, headed back, showered, got dressed for dinner, and went to The Ferryboat Inn for dinner.  We were wanting a good, juicy burger for dinner and have read that they have the best burgers on the island.  So we both got an 8 oz burger with cheese and mushrooms and it was wonderful!  The boys just ate chicken salad and crackers and our french fries.  Monday was such a wonderful day!

I also wanted to remind everyone about the pictures. Just go to photos tab in the menu and several categories will drop down. We will be adding pictures to these categories throughout the month so just because you don’t see a new category doesn’t mean there are not new pictures.  In fact, Josh has added several pictures to each category every night from that day’s adventures.

Our First Day on the Beach

We woke up this morning to the bright sun and the sound of waves. We spent some time on Shoal Bay beach. Gabe was a bit tired still from yesterday and was not himself. Both boys fell asleep in the car so we took the opportunity to go the grocery store and stock up on some supplies. Shauna sat in the car and napped with the boys while I shopped. Prices were in EC (Eastern Caribbean) dollars which is fixed at $1 US to $2.68 EC. Most restaurants are in US dollars so this was a bit confusing. For example, I bought 24 cans of pop for 31 EC. All the prices look super high and I was mentally dividing everything by 3 to try and figure out how much things were. Then when you check out you tell them what currency you are going to pay with and they bring up a menu to convert to US dollars in my case and tell you the new total. Very challenging.

Speaking of a challenge – It is very hard driving on the left. I thought it would be simple, but my mind is so programmed to drive on the right that it takes a lot of concentration, especially when making turns. But I managed to navigate pretty well today. Road signs are terrible. I have no idea what most of the road names are. Directions from the Arawak to the grocery were as follows:

Go to the end of the road and turn right. Turn right on the first big road (with blacktop) and go past Serenity. Go to the end of that road and turn right. Then at the end of that road instead of turning right to go to that beach turn left and go up the hill. When you get to the round about (very tricky to navigate driving on the left) go to the right. Go past the first stop light and the grocery store is on the right. If you get to the second stop light you went too far.

We said OK thanks and drove away and said, can you remember that? I somehow managed to follow them.

We made it back to the Arawak and went swimming the pool, which is really cool to be able to see the ocean while swimming. Then I cooked some penne pasta alfredo for dinner and we went back to the pool this evening to listen to some local musicians sing and play acoustic guitar.

Anyway, check out the videos below for a sample of our first day on the beach.

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