7.21.2015

Tutorial Tuesday!

Zucchini Recipes:


Enjoy eating healthy with these family friendly Summer zucchini recipes.

Peanut Butter Banana Fudgecicles: 

 
Peanut Butter Banana Fudgesicles via Everyday Made Fresh

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Hope Studios


7.20.2015

Marriott's Frenchman's Cove - St. Thomas, USVI

So, I mentioned earlier this week that I would post about our awesome vacation to St. Thomas.  We have owned a Marriott Vacation Club timeshare property for about 6-7 years.  We purchased it in Orlando, back when my boys were just kidlets and in love with Disney.  We have gone to Disney/Universal for many years and, thankfully, that is OUT of our system.

We upgraded our timeshare program to the points system.  The Big Guy was super pissed when Marriott changed systems the year after we purchased, and has told many many people about it during the meetings we have attended since, but we finally decided it was time to bite the bullet and pay for the upgrade.  The new point system gave us enough points to visit a new, exciting destination...St. Thomas!! (We've got our eye on you, Marriott! No more funny business!)

The kids have never seen a tropical island, and we haven't been anyplace like that since our honeymoon in Jamaica, so we were all very excited to go. I researched the bejeezus out of the trip and was armed with lots of places to explore, lots of restaurants to try, and lots of photos to take.

If you are here looking for info on Frenchman's Cove, let me give you the info I also searched for.

Here are some photos of our room at Marriott's Frenchman's Cove, Jost Van Dyke building - huge, 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom, 2 balcony villa. All rooms face the ocean, but some lower floors on some buildings have a view of the back of other buildings rather than the ocean.


Large master bedroom with a king bed, bathroom with 2 sinks, jacuzzi tub, and separate toilet and shower area.  They had a TV, hairdryer, shampoo, soap, lotion, and plenty of towels there.  Your striped pool towels are rolled up in the bathroom in case you don't notice them and walk all the way down to the pool without them like we did.


Large living room / kitchen area with a dishwasher, full sized fridge and oven and stacked washer and dryer.  They provided us with dishwasher and dish washing soap, a tiny salt and pepper, coffee pot, coffee, filters, a few packets of sugar and powdered creamer, fully stocked cabinets with all dinnerware and cookware and silverware needed.  Paper towels, garbage bags, sponge, a tiny laundry soap, and dishtowels all provided.


Check out the view from the family room and balconies!  Gorgeous Frenchman's Cove!


Second bedroom with it's own balcony and 2 queen beds (it's hard to keep things untouched for photos with my family around!) A large bathroom with 2 sinks and shower/tub/toilet all in one room.


View off balcony of Frenchman's Cove. I woke up early every single morning to just sit out there and stare at it.


Right side of the Cove.


On our 3rd day around 7 am, look what popped up from around the corner?  Cruise ships sllllooooolllly cruised in to port at Charlotte Amalie next door.


We started taking the stairs rather than the elevator so we could stop on each floor to admire the view. My middle son is the beach bum of the family (just like dad) so he just couldn't get enough and set his sights on studying Hospitality in college (just like dad) so he can manage an island resort someday.


This is the view of the infinity pool and beach in surrounded by the resort.  There is a dock for sitting or fishing,  huge floating mats tied off in the deep water, and lots of lounge chairs with lots shade if you want it.  They show movies in the pool Wednesday nights.


Some people were under the impression the huge floats were for lounging...but my kids used them for an epic King of the Hill battle.  I can almost read the annoyance on that lady's face...


The harbor at the resort is also an amazing spot to snorkel right from the shore.  It was actually one of the best places we went on the island. We saw tarpon, sea turtles, sting ray, and lots of colorful fish in our own "front yard", so bring snorkel gear!

Right at our place they also had Night Kayaking since the fish are so plentiful!  Glass bottomed kayaks are fitted with long thin LED lights to shine down through the water to the sea floor below.  We saw turtles, sting ray, and tarpon and also learned about some island history as the guides shined powerful spot lights to old forts along the shore.  It was one of our favorite excursions!


Night kayaking in Frenchman's Cove.



I'll share some photos from some of our adventures and some of the gorgeous beaches we saw next week!

7.17.2015

Road Trip / Airplane Treat Packs


I found these bead containers with individual sections at my local Walmart on clearance for 3 bucks last month.  I was inspired to make a compact treat  pack for my kiddos to go along with the Numbered Airplane Gifts they get every time we fly.

I bought a bunch of their favorite candies and filled each compartment.  It made a fun, colorful surprise when they opened them!

Since I made them up ahead of time, I wrapped each one well in plastic wrap so the candy wouldn't get stale, then gift wrapped each one.


Pretty soon, they weren't even interested in the candy...


I'm happy to say the candy lasted all week and they dipped into it whenever they needed a sweet treat.

How do you survive travel with kiddos?

 

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