Spring Break: St Thomas & the Caribbean
We’re back from a faaaaabulous (said in Oprah voice) weeklong getaway with Jude for Spring Break this year. We ended up leaving the baby in OKC with my in-laws so that we could all really truly have a vacation and not just a trip (parents, you know what I’m talkin’ about!). The main thing that led me to that decision? Realizing that I have next to no memory of the cruise we took back in July with 6-month-old Archer. That’s how brain-dead/exhausted I was. No wonder I was starting to feel rather blue and low!
And it was a good choice to let Archer stay behind for this trip. We had such a great time with Jude one-on-one, and he’s old enough now to do some pretty fun things that we would’ve had to skip out on had the baby come along. My in-laws got great alone time with Archer and I got to sleep all the way through the night for 9 solid nights. WIN WIN.
This particular itinerary was so fun because it went to some different ports of call, further south in the Caribbean than we’ve been in the past (see Disney Magic, Disney Dream, and previous Disney Fantasy itineraries). There were several days at sea, which we like because it gives ample time for sunbathing and napping and spa-attending and Mickey Mouse-hugging and shrimp-eating (haaa). Then two days back to back for the US Virgin Islands and Tortola.
But the best part was our stateroom – it’s a secret (shhhh!) but there are a couple of regular ol’ category staterooms that have ginormous verandahs. Like HUGE – four times the size of the other stateroom verandahs. Or, enough for multiple chaise lounges and fab deck parties if one is so inclined.
We soaked up the sun as much as possible on that fabulous private deck. We even watched whales one day, frolicking out in the Caribbean Sea.
Naturally there was the consumption of many a Mickey Bar. And loads of fish. Erm, not together tho.
We LOVED St Thomas and Tortola. Tortola was a little more raw – less commercial and more of a “hang out in this beach shanty overlooking crystal clear water” while St Thomas was more polished and “hang out in your yacht and then head into town to buy some diamonds and a Rolex.” We rented a dirty beat-up Jeep on Tortola for a few hours to go to a beach on the north side of the island. Wild chickens were everywhere!
We’re not much for group excursions, but we made an exception on Tortola and did a snorkeling one off of Norman Island after dropping the Jeep off at the rental agency. We got on a boat that took us out to these rocks jutting up out of the sea. I have never – NEVER – in my life seen water so clear and beautiful. It was literally like swimming in an aquarium – the fish were EVERYWHERE.
Then, we got back in the boat where they took us to a deserted island. There were enormous caves to swim into – allegedly pirates used to hide treasure in them! We just hopped right out of the boat into the water.
My favorite part was holding hands with Jude as we swam and pointed at the fish. He was such a little adventurer – at first he was a little freaked by all the coral (they made a big deal about not touching any of it – and Simon sat on it while really freaked him out) but he quickly got the hang of it. I don’t think he’ll ever forget it.
On St Thomas, we explored the downtown area before grabbing a taxi out to the Marriott at Frenchmans Reef to use their beach and pool w/ a daypass. Perfect 80-degree weather and loads of sunshine.
Oh how I love this boy. He’s still so sweet and snuggly although I see him changing every single day. He won’t hold my hand in public (that is, unless we’re snorkeling – ha!), but he will still snuggle up to me on the couch and run to take pictures with Mickey Mouse or Captain Hook.
On Saturday, we were up at zero dark o’clock getting off the ship, and it was back to the airport in Orlando to fly home. All 3 of us were anxious to see Archer and get home to our own comfy beds. The Orlando airport is not unlike Purgatory, especially at Spring Break. And as we all left the ship with souvenir sinus infections, we were all zonked as we waited for our flight to depart. At one point, Simon says “I wish I had a blanket.”
And I was all “I GOT YOU, BABE!”
Because when your wife designs rainbow stripe blankets, OF COURSE YOU HAVE ONE WITH YOU.
Here’s to beach vacations, giant private balconies, swimming in the sea, watching whales leap out of the ocean, and adventuring with your favorite people. Vacation, I like you just fine.
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