Here is our “year in review” of the first year of our attempt at Living the Dream in San Pedro, Belize……if you’re interested in reading more details click the links we included…….
October 2, 2014 was the big move day! We had made it…….nothing could have felt better than boarding our flight in Miami to move to Belize…..Dooley Bear got to ride with us in First Class, well, because, he is THE Dooley Bear.
Can you tell he was so excited to move to Belize?
Here is our first family photo in Belize! Thank you Scott and Jodie for welcoming us home!
After we arrived we slept a lot! We were completely exhausted from all of the planning and traveling.
A week after we arrived Scott and Jodie threw us a surprise welcome party at the Palapa Bar – Surprise! all of our island friends were there as well as our friends Mark and Kathy who flew down from Canada for the big event!
We spent the first month paddelboarding, kayaking, snorkeling and relaxing and learning our new home….where do we shop? When is the best time to go to the bank? Who do we buy coconut water from?
We also learned how to cut each other’s hair – you read correctly…..we’ve actually gotten pretty good at it too!
October brought Halloween which is our favorite holiday! There is a giant party that starts at (about) 11:00 pm….we so wanted to go but we were still exhausted….so we celebrated Halloween at Wayos which was really fun – Ronnie won a prize for his sexy 80s costume!
Here’s Ronnie in his awesome 80’s pants…. (as you can see we had already given up wearing shoes)
We also went to the SAGA Humane Society’s annual Halloween party and Dooley Bear won a prize! Cutest Costume for his T-Rex costume….he really thought he was scary – but he was the only one who thought that.
Scary (I mean cute) Dooley Bear in his T-Rex costume… wanna read about the SAGA party? Click here!
We spent a lot of time on the dock while Ronnie learned to fish and filet fish. We also spent a lot of time running around town learning how and where to shop and buy groceries on the island…here’s our grocery shopping tale.
We also discovered and fell in love with “street meat”. Nothing beats a pork burrito with cheese stuffed with a whole hotdog at 10:00 at night! Burritos so big you have to share them at $6.00 bze – that’s only $3.00 US!
Learning new routines and staying on track with exercise, lots of walks on the beach and swimming – learning how, where and when to return our empty bottles and buying new cases of Belikin and Fanta at the distributor – really enjoying our new home.
Ronnie took several Kiteboarding lessons….he’s getting the hang of it – now just practice, practice, practice….see how his lessons went.
Dooley Bear spent a lot of time learning to ride on the back of a golf cart too- and we had to modify the back of the cart because he never really got the hang of staying on the cart. He kept getting distracted by the smells of BBQ chicken and would slide off….so Ronnie had to install “non-skid carpeting”. Dooley Bear wrote a “tail” about his Cart Survival Lessons…..click here to read his tail.
November brought some “cooler” and “rainy” weather….and we celebrated our First Thanksgiving dinner at Palapa Bar – what was the meal? Fresh fish and lobster of course!
In December we decided it was time to go through the process of becoming QRPs officially…..not hard, we just had to meet the requirements and submit all of the paperwork and pictures. Click here to read the steps.
We also saw our very first lighted boat parade!
Christmas Eve – Eric and Krista invited us to join in their super fun event that they do every year. We all went around on golf carts with about 50 of our crazy friends and handed out toys and candy to the children around town. That was so much fun! The kids on the island are just so sweet and to see the joy on their faces? Priceless. What a great way to spend Christmas Eve! Click here to watch a fun video of the night!
Ready to hand out toys and candy!
Our Christmas card this year…
End of January Lisa’s parents came for a visit and we had tons of fun. We went to Kelly McGuire concerts and went on Boat Pub crawls….the First Groundhog Day pubcrawl had it’s inaugural cruise! (complete with Trampoline Madness at X-Tan Ha!) Click here to see the videos: Groundhog Day Pub Crawl and Trampoline Madness!
Lisa’s parents dancing at Ramons…..
February wouldn’t have been complete without our first Carnaval experience…..one of the most fun times we’ve ever had – music and dancing and Comparsa’s and paint! Here’s our take on what happened at Carnaval 2015
Ronnie getting a special dance from one of the Comparasa’s –
The “after” pictures at the end of Carnaval….
In March we flew to Utila, Honduras (an adventure in itself!) to visit our super fun friends Adam and Mia – and Scott and Jodie met us there too! We had a funfilled week full of boating, scuba diving at Cayos Cochinos, beach games AND a fierce round of miniature golf! That’s right – we played the funnest game of miniature golf ever in a homemade miniature golf course on the island of Utila. Here’s a video of our round of mini golf!
After resting from our adventure in Utila it was April…april already? Wow – our first six months flew by in the blink of an eye! We climbed aboard a 50 foot catamaran with more fun friends Stacey, Rob, Amy and Seth and their kids for a week long sailing adventure on the high seas – well, at least the crystal blue Caribbean seas off the coast of Belize – we went with Ecologic Divers and all had a week full of swimming, laughing, diving, snorkeling and wine drinking!
The group after the week together on the boat….look at all of us, we are all still smiling! How’d we manage that? Click here to read about our week!
11 days after our return home Lisa’s brother, Leon, and cousin, Dawn, came down for a visit…..were we rested and ready? Of course! It was another fun week of sailing and day trips and snorkeling at Hol Chan. Here’s a great video of the marine life at Hol Chan.
Although that week did have some excitement….we ran into a couple of zombies on our drive up to Mata Chica for dinner….
8 days after Leon and Dawn departed we had some more super fun guests arrive for another week of fun in the sun – Matt and Laura! It was 5 days of non-stop, let’s show you everything we love about our island…..which of course included a pub crawl up north (which had to be done on our golf cart because one of our “world’s worst bikes” broke – you can click here to read our 2 part serious on bike purchasing) sailing to Caye Caulker with Searious, dancing, dinners out and street meet!
Lizard Juice at the split on Caye Caulker….
We had 9 days to recover and rest before our next adventure. Scott and Angela arrived for another 3 days and quick tour of the island – which always includes the pub crawl up north and sailing to Caye Caulker! (were are starting to call it “vacation package A”)
When their 3 days were up here on Ambergris with us the fun wasn’t over….we all hopped a plane to Corozal……
Ready to hop onto the plane!
After landing in Corozal, Belize we hopped into a van up to Cancun and then onto a water taxi to Isla Mujeres for 5 more days of fun with friends…(click here to read about our fun travel day!) which of course included more diving (we dove MUSA which was amazing!), music on the beach and laughter. Here’s the video of our dive at MUSA.
When we departed Isla Mujeres did we head straight home to Belize?
Of course not! We weren’t tired enough….so we hopped on the ADO bus and went down to Tulm….had a couple of fun days biking to and swimming in cenotes and exploring the ruins of Tulum. A few days later and another bus ride and water taxi ride we were sleeping in our own beds again…here’s our Great Biking and Cenote Adventure!
Ronnie in a cenote….
But for how long, you ask?
14 long days and nights! Why only 14 days?
Because on June 18 we hopped a plane up to Toronto to hang out with our friends Mark and Kathy and to listen to some great beach music with our friends and musicians Mark Mulligan, Sunny Jim White and Kelly McGuire. (and also to eat poutine of course!) Lisa’s parents drove up from Indiana for the event which is always so much fun.
Dancing in Canada…bundled up but still barefoot…
After the long weekend in Canada we hitched a ride back to Indiana with Lisa’s parents for 6 days of visiting family, friends and some well needed shopping for re-stocking. Here’s the trip summary (which included a trip to WalMart)
When we arrived back home in Belize on July first we had no vacations planned….we would get time to sit still!
Well, kind of – Ronnie needed to get his Belize driver’s license….so that was a fun day!
But wait…..we decided we wanted to buy a boat…so boat research and purchasing and shipping took up our time….as well as taking the test to obtain our Captain’s Licenses (which also entailed hunting down the book!).
While we were waiting for our boat delivery we had another set of friends visit and completed “vacation package A” as well as a day trip to Lamanai.
Our boat was delivered on August 7……How’d we get the boat here from Florida?
But wait – we don’t have a truck….how do we actually launch our new boat???
Finally we can sit still and relax, right?
Well….then it’s time to hire a captain to help us navigate the waters and teach us to fish….all of August was spent learning the waters and how to not just throw out a fishing line, but to actually catch the fish from our boat.
Could anything else happen you ask?
Well, yes. At the end of August we got a call from a company (to be named in the future) wanting to fly us to Belize city and do a photo shoot for their new marketing campaign……why not, right?
Here we are in the studio at Channel 5 in Belize City waiting to do the shoot…..this studio is where the morning show “Open Your Eyes” is filmed….
September rolled in before we even knew it…and it is filled with parades and celebrations to celebrate Belize’s Independence day – Yes, Independence Day is officially on September 21, but here in Belize they celebrate all month long!
How will we close out our first year in Belize? By taking a trip up to Merida, Mexico! Right as celebrations are ending we will hop on the water taxi to Chetumal and then the ADO bus up to Merida, Mexico for an 8 day vacation to celebrate Lisa’s birthday!
People ask us what me miss from living in the states……our honest answer is nothing (ok – well maybe the 10 minute Domino’s pizza delivery guy – but that’s it)….we love our new home and everything about it. Thanks to all of our friends and neighbors for making us feel so welcome!
And when we return it will be the start of year 2 of our attempt at living the dream……wonder what kind of fun and adventure we will discover in year two!
And if you’re thinking we have been too busy……don’t worry about that.
We definitely have found plenty of time to relax.