Spring In The Air

March 3, 2019

Didn’t manage to get our visit to Dolphin Cove photos up over the weekend like I’d hoped. Its almost Spring and the kids activates are back in full swing. Swim classes, lacrosse practice, a couple of playdates and a night out wine tasting with some friends (me, not the kids) and suddenly the weekend just slipped past. So all I have to offer is this snap of some Doyle boys, excited to be heading into the water to swim with some dolphins. Lots of dolphin pictures soon.

No Signal

February 28, 2019

Its embarrassing to admit, but not long after arriving to our hotel in Jamaica, I realized very quickly that phone service was not great. Ok, not a big deal, who really uses their phone to make phone calls anymore? But the next realization was a real blow and had me spinning for…… actually, I don’t even know, cos I may have blacked out from the news that WiFi, was almost nonexistent. It seriously took me a minute to process. No WiFi?? This had to be a mistake, surely. Where was the hotel manager? Maybe I could just take a second of his time to suggest he hold down the “Power Button” of the hotel modem for the recommended 10 seconds and see if that wouldn’t help bust the signal and have it remain busted for at least the duration of our stay. I mean, no WiFi, in 2019?? How were we to survive. Its truly embarrassing how much of a stress this caused me. I mean, if I couldn’t share a photo, or create an IG story of some of the highlights, but only the highlights of course, my God we could never share the real, raw, down and dirty true life details of one of the kids in full on tantrum mode. Or the other in an utter stand off and borderline hungry strike cos the breakfast buffet didn’t have the maple syrup he likes to put on his pancakes. You know, real life problems. But if I couldn’t share on Instagram, then, were we even really there?? Yes, its sad and it’s embarrassing that social media has such a hold on our lives these days. Needless to say, I eventually settled down, reminding myself that I use to live in a world without internet and social media. And to be honest, it was a much happier time. Now, here I was being gifted a vacation free from WiFi, free from social media. The only thing I had to worry about, was hanging with my family. Planning beach days and adventure days. Leaving my phone in the room and often leaving my camera too. Letting moments happen without feeling the need to always capture them. Thats not to say the camera stayed out of commission the entire time. Heavens no. I mean I still have the self appointed job of being the family preserver of memories via photos. And here are some beach day memories.

Each morning the hotel took the kids down to the beach to feed the fish. Cullen loved it.

Tearing up the bread for the fishy.

Here fishy, fishy.

Cullen got tired feeding the fish from the pier. He prefers to get into the ocean up close and personal with the fish.

Meanwhile on the beach, Keane waits impatiently for the fish feed to end.

Splashing his brother is his idea of fun.

A game of tag around the tropical beach umbrellas.

Time for some beach digging and building.

Filling up the newly dug shark pool.

Shark castles.

In the absence of buckets, we’re using beverage glasses. #resourceful

The Family.

Island Nuptials

February 24, 2019

This here, the reason for our lovely little break to Jamaica, was the nuptials of our good friend Asafa Powell to his stunning bride and our newest good friend, Alisha. Our original plan was just to fly to Jamaica for the weekend of the wedding. Until we realized that the boys winter break from school, was perfectly timed to fall right in line with the wedding arrangements. And just like that, we’re packing bigger bags and making plans for a longer trip to beautiful Montego Bay, Jamaica. But before we get to the vacation photos, I want to first share some snaps from a fabulous day, celebrating a fabulous couple.

Doyle family, led by Keane and Cullen arrives.

How fabulous is this old house? This was the location for the wedding and bonus, its haunted. Apparently it was a sugar plantation, owned by a wealthy women who killed 4 husbands and a few lovers too. Wonder what those men did to drive that poor women to murder, repeatedly??

Team Groomsmen, in position and ready to rock.

Not a hope of Cullen sitting cooperatively in his seat for the duration of the ceremony. So he and I hung out at the back. A place where we would be the least disruptive.

Team Bride have arrived.

Keane looking like he wants to join Cullen and I at the back.

The deal is sealed. The new Mr. & Mrs. Powell.

Unfazed by it all, but fully focused on his favorite shark.

Congratulations to the Happy Couple!!

The adorable support crew.

Freed from his seat.

A hot day requires lots of chilled island style beverages.

Reception under a gorgeous, humongous tree.

Making friends.

Running wild.

Harassing the birds.

Boy talk with the groom.

Cheers!

Winter Sun

February 21, 2019

We snuck away, to desert island. A trip for a friends wedding that happened to coincide with the boys winter break from school. So we took advantage and stayed a few extra days to enjoy the beach life.

Celebrating Marine Style

February 12, 2019

The morning of Cullen’s 5th birthday:

Cullen: “Momma do I look bigger today?”

Me: “You look waaay bigger.”

Cullen: “Do I sound different?

Me: “Hmmmm?” I was stalling, my brain spinning, wondering if he wanted the answer to be “Yes” or “No“. Cos a wrong answer could piss this birthday boy off for the rest of the day. And no Momma wants that kind of blood on her hands. Luckily he jumped in with a follow up question before I could answer.

Cullen: “Listen to me speak. I think I sound like Keane now. I have lots of words, see, and I can say them really fast.

Me: “Oh my god, you’re right. You sound very grown up

Cullen: “But I still can’t make pancakes by myself yet, cos my skin will melt if it gets too close to the flames, but I can help you make me shark pancakes for my birthday.

Me: “That sounds like a plan.

And after a breakfast of pancakes, it was off to the Georgia Aquarium to make this 5 year olds marine life, shark obsessed dreams come true.

As we waited for all of his little friends to gather, Cullen and his fellow shark obsessed friend, Bryson can’t take their eyes off the sea anemone.

All friends present and its off for a little behind the scenes tour of the aquarium.

Being very good listeners and picking your nose is part of the privileges that go along with being the birthday boy.

They’ve spotted something amazing.

When you’re distracted but the stitching style of your birthday t-shirt.

Premier viewing of the stingrays.

I’m going to go ahead and call this a “Family Photo”, cos there’s a Momma, Daddy, Keane (there in the background), & Cullen (there in the foreground) present.

Our aquarium guide brought a sample of the food they feed to the stingrays and whale sharks, and the boys was instantly obsessed.

Cullen took one of the fish and insisted on walking around showing it to everyone.

Keane and his friend Noah in deep conversation about something.

One of 4 whale sharks we got to see close up.

The excitement.

The boys got to see a baby zebra shark, doing what all baby’s do, sleeping.

The clown fish (or more commonly known as Nemo fish) nursery.

Behind the scenes tour complete, it was onto the party room, to party.

Cake!

Treats!

But first, a little crafting.

Party hat on, its time to blow out some candles.

Unbeknownst to us, the aquarium baked Cullen a cake. And we brought our own cake. So this lucky boy ended up with 2 cakes!

All the effort needed to blow our 5 blazing candles.

Full of sugar.

Checking out their gift bags.

Shark water guns for everyone. Big hit!

Post party and its back to exploring the aquarium.

Cullen and his friend Ashton mesmerized by the sharks and fishes.