I am sorry it has been so long... I even had to look at our blog to see when I last posted! It has been awhile. No excuses, just busy living. We arrived into La Cruz on the 21st and started to clean the boat and provision for my sisters arrival on the 23rd. We have been so excited to see them and wanted everything ready and comfortable as possible for their stay. Laundry, food and boat scrubbing. It always feels good to get the cobwebs out.
Piper, Josh, Ethan, Adriana, Emerson and Baby to be arrived on the 23rd. So fun to have them all here. It was seamless for them to be on the boat and the kids reconnected just like it was yesterday that they last saw them. Little peas in a pod. We enjoyed sailing, whale sightings, dolphins, Fishing, surfing, boogie boarding and a few road trips up to 2 other beach towns. We were on a different beach every day surfing and playing in the waves. A few trips at night up into La Cruz for ice cream and a walk to get off the boat. We are really enjoying La Cruz. It is such a cute little town that provides all the amenities that we need and close by. It has lots of wonderful people that go out of their way to help if they can. This is so far a reoccurring theme throughout all the little towns we have been to in Mexico!
We rented a car for a few days and drove north to discover the towns of Sayulita and San Pablo. Both towns are known surfing spots, so we dragged our 2 surf boards, 5 boogie boards, umbrellas, back packs, 8 kids, water bottles and hit the beach. I felt like the beverly hillbillies pulling into this place with our huge suburban and all 11 of us piling out... No seat belt law in mexico... or car seat... thank god. Unfortunately it is christmas break and I think everyone had the same idea. The town of Sayulita is a super cute surfing town. Really cute little boutique shops, great food, super cute little bungalows.. and on a non holiday break I could see this would be an amazing town to spend some time in. We finally parked our car.. with chris' parking carma we were able to get within on block from the beach... For those of you out there, this is like parking a combine in a trader joes packed parking lot... but we did it. We were all super excited to get to the beach.... we walked along the river and then rounded the corner to the beach... wall to wall people... not a sand spot for a blanket anywhere. We finally made it down to the end... exhausted from carrying all the toys and started setting up when we were told by someone that this is where the pongas land and come up into the parking lot... UGH! We ended up squeezing in 30 feet down the beach and were just hoping that the tide was going out. The kids had a good time. They always do on the beach but for the adults it was a constant head count and trying to find our kids among the sea of people and beginner surfers out there. It was a literal nightmare. There were about 10 people catching the same wave and then coming down on 20 people right in front of them. I just knew at some point this was going to end badly with someone getting run over by a surf board. Low and behold 3 hours later.. Alina got nailed. It was an older child trying to learn to surf. She caught the same wave and his board flipped up on him and then proceeded to travel right over her back and smack into the back of her head... Thankfully I saw it coming and ran out to her. She was a little shaken but was alright. We stayed a little after that and then decided we had had enough of the crowds. We are just spoiled in being able to find our own private beach and not having to deal with anyone else around us.
We decided to attempt the next town up. We heard that it was quieter with less people but still a fun beach for surfing and playing. We went San Pablo. Whew... this is more like it. Such a cute little town with just a few restaurants, a couple boutique shops, clean and a fantastic beach. We had so much fun resting and playing that we stayed there all day and then had a really neat dinner at a local restaurant. This restaurant was started by a mother who moved down from the states and had started it 20 years ago and now her daughter is living in town and running it. I wish I could remember the name but it was fantastic food. We were completely full, exhausted, and ready for the long drive back to the boat... only about 40 minutes but in the dark on the sketchy roads it is always an adventure.
Then the fun begins.... the middle of the night Alexia feels sick... we thought oh great... now she has food poisoning... UGH! That would have been a welcome thing compared to what it actually was.... THE STOMACH FLU! Yes, that is right. Sharing is caring and all of us got some variation of sick except for Tristan. 6 of the 8 kids took turns throwing up over a period of 24 hours... the adults just wish they could have thrown up, then it morphed to body aches and head aches, then some got the big "D". Well that was fun. but with in 48 hours it ripped through the boat and we were ready for our next adventure... you can't keep a good man down!
One of the most spectacular towns we went to with Pipe and family was Yelapa. This town is part of the Indigenous Community of Chacala. Back in 1581 King Philip II of Spain granted the property rights of this territory to the indigenous people of the governing town of Chacala. The land here is owned by the community collectively and no one person or family privately owns the piece of land they live on. The families here have generations that have lived in this town for centuries. The Town is on the hillside with winding alleyways and stair cases... there is Not one road that leads into this town so the only transportation throughout town is by donkey or ATV. The supplies are delivered by boats.
When we first arrived we were greeted by 2 ponga's offering a mooring buoy there because it is almost impossible to anchor. With the price of the buoy we get rides to and from the boat to shore on their ponga. This was amazing because this anchorage is unprotected from the northern swells and the landings would almost be impossible! These guys end up flooring the ponga and riding it right up onto the beach out of the water. I thought we were going to have a crash landing.
After a quick bite to eat and drink on the beach we wondered through town. There are two waterfalls, one you can walk to in 1/2 an hour and the other is an hour ride by donkey. We ended up walking through town to the local waterfall. It is at the end of one of the alleyways. When you get to the top and end of this trail it opens up into this 100ft fresh waterfall/swimming hole. There is a family there that sells some cervazas and water.
After the hiking we had a fantastic dinner on the beach and then Franko drove us back in the ponga to the boat. We left in the dark because the anchorage is uncomfortable to stay in because of the northern swells and motored the 2 hours back to La Cruz Marina. You know you have had an awesome day when I look up from driving and see that EVERY single person on the boat is sleeping except me... Everyone was completely relaxed/exhausted from the day. Life is Good!
Now it is time for Piper and Family to depart us...and it is always so sad for me to see them go! I am not sure when I will get to see them if at all before we return to Lafayette. With a new baby coming in May and the kids growing so fast... I will miss them tons.... I miss all my family so much and especially Kava and all the nieces and nephews (Mollie Mae, Una, Liam, Ethan, Adriana, Emerson),.. more so because they are the ones that grow and change so quickly... I am looking forward to being closer when we return. It is hard to see them for a short time and then have them return home without us... it is a reminder of what we are missing... I definitely treasure the time we got to share with them.
Along that note we had a wonderful surprise visit by the Acuna-Kapoors. I am so glad that they were in PV and were able to come and see us for a day sail out on Banderas Bay... Not much for wind but a little motoring and then a quick anchor and swimming/boogie boarding to the beach for a little wave time then back to the boat and the marina... it was fast but so much fun to see them and spend time with Natasha. It was there last day of vacation with their family and I am so grateful to them and their families to have them come see us. I know how hard it is when you have a quick time frame and with us having the flu it was hard to coordinate enough time in-between so that we don't pass on the bug... still crossing my fingers that we didn't give you all presents for your way home.....
Thanks for a fun day and it was really nice seeing you guys! I hope the kids had a great time :@)
WE are all Looking forward to our next visitor.... hopefully we will have an OMA sighting in the first week of February in Z town!
Now we are back to homeschooling and with the break it has been a pretty good day. This kids are refreshed and are able to somewhat focus and get some things done. I can't keep enough books on the kindle uploaded for Amaia still. She is racing through everything I am sending her way. She is just finishing the frog princess series, has finished the Percy Jackson Series and this is all with in 3 weeks... But I love a good challenge so here we go.
I am running into a number of boats that have kids or have cruised with kids... I still can't believe how many people out here have done this and are so excited for us and supporting... all the stories are good and encouraging so far. I ran into a woman that cruised with her 5 children 30 years ago and said that she would do it again in a heart beat. She called us on the radio today to give us an extra Skippy peanut butter and saltines. These items are like gold and are very much appreciated. Another lady while I am typing this just invited the kids to join her chemistry class she is starting next week here at the marina. She is a retired science teacher and is bringing a kids class to the marina for all the kids cruising... Dang... to bad we are leaving on Monday for PV.
So our for the next 3 weeks are to go the Paradise Village Marina on Monday the 5th. We will stay in this fancy resort and spa until the 12th of January and then come back up to La Cruz to have the boat hauled out of the water again. We want to raise the water line and patch a small Whoopsie that we put in the back of one of the hulls, since the boat is out of water we will give it a good washing, check the zincs and just make sure that the bottom of the boat looks good. We have a small list of to do's to check off the list... one of which is our ever temperamental freezer that decides she is overworked and just quits when she feels like it.... Once we get all (hee hee) most of our to do's checked off, our boat provisioned with as much Costco purchases as we can fill and not sink the boat, then we will start making our way down to Zihuatanejo.. It is 340 miles about and we will take about 10 days to get there. Then we will be in this area until we decide to make the leap and start the puddle jump. I think we have decided to just leave from there. After speaking to a lot of cruisers... we have decided that we will be to rushed to get to Panama then the Galapagos and then over... it is a lot of miles, short amount of time and just to exhausting... Of course our plans are always written in sand in low tide so this may again change!
Love and hugs to ALL! Have a great 2015 and embrace every day.
Internet to slow to upload pictures... will try later tonight!