Tuesday, January 5, 2016


Someone had the brilliant idea early last year that we should spend a week in Mexico around Christmas, for our Christmas. The idea was very well received and I believe everyone in Tanner's family had flight and resort booked by March. It was so fun to have something to look forward to all year. Tanner's family ended up leaving on Saturday, the 12th of December. We had to work and drive and didn't want to cut it too close so we drove on the 11th and flew out on the morning of the 13th. It was a PAINFUL drive to Utah. Long, hauling a trailer, a not-wanting-to-sleep kid and a long stretch of TERRIBLE weather. 17 hours later (4 of which Harvey slept), we made it to my parents alive. Thank goodness. We had some errands to run Saturday and we also had a family birthday party that  morning before Kathryn had to work. My parents were awesome to let us leave the dogs with them, and they also were awesome to take us to the airport.

I'd say overall Harvey was a trooper on all of our flights and layovers. Some of the lines we had to wait in for customs stuff and security got a little painful, but overall, we really can't complain. He was a busy body, but happy and good...we'll take it.

We had about an hour drive from the airport to the hotel. Harvey fell asleep about 10 minutes into the drive which was nice. He had a second wind by the time we showed up. Everyone was waiting for us at one of the restaurants, The Seaside Grill. We were starving. They had amazing bread and a yummy pesto-like dipping sauce. Harvey got whisked away by cousins and he discovered the mini golf course, the highlight of the whole vacation for him. We spent the majority of our resort time there!

I don't think they quite had our room all finished because I'm pretty sure those pillows weren't supposed to be stacked on the couch...
Monday Tanner was up early ready to make up for lost time :) We ate breakfast every day at the World Cafe - they had some awesome selections. The next stop was some digging in the sand.

View from our balcony.

That day was basically just a fun resort day of swimming, sand, golf and food. Harvey and I both squeezed in a long nap - needed for both of us. He fell asleep eating a cracker on the bed.

Might as well throw a few golf pictures in. I only really took pictures one day, but trust me when I say we probably spent 60 percent of the time we were at the resort (not eating or sleeping) at the "golf course". He was always begging to go play. They only had 3 clubs and a handful of balls so it was tragic if all the clubs/balls were being used.
One of my personal favs

We ate dinner at the Oceana - typically an adult only place but that night they let kids in. It was tasty but took FOREVER. Harvey was losing patience fast and again begging to go play golf. They did have some fun live music and we started a daddy-daughter dancing party that extended to many other guests.

Tuesday we took a taxi to Playa del Carmen to wander and shop. It was fun and also exceedingly hot.

Bartering for Rolex's

It felt so exceedingly good to get in the pool after we got back. Here's some more random pool pictures that could be from that time or another time. Hard to say.
They had free short little SCUBA lessons in the pool. Need to get T certified now :)

Harv had a blast sitting/playing on this mat. Also he really enjoyed watching the dancers :)
 This was his favorite pastime in the pool, though...

 He really couldn't be in the pool without some type of ball.

That night they had a big Mexican fiesta dinner on the beach that night. That was probably one of my favorite things. It was such a cool atmosphere. They had it decorated really cool, all the tables on the sand, and a huge buffet spread of amazing Mexican food set up right in front of the ocean.  I fed Harv while he played in the sand (lots of restaurant eating etc was a little hard on a little guy).

The next day we hired a Mormon tour guide that does tours to Mayan ruins. We had a private bus for all 19 of us and headed out for Tulum in the morning. He was awesome. During the drive he did lots of explanations about culture and the architecture and had a lot of scriptural references for it. I really thought it was fascinating. I have a million pictures so I'm just going to throw them in here.

 Harvey wasn't a huge fan of staying with the group or riding in the stroller. He kind of likes to do his own thing. And also, it was SO hot that day. I was dying. And carrying him all over the place didn't help ;) But it still was really cool and our guide told us lots of cool things about the area - most of which I caught when I was chasing the small child around. Our tour guide was also good at capturing multiple group shots in all the right places ;)

Throwin' rocks
We had lunch just outside the Tulum entrance. It was delicious. Then we took a bus ride to a cenote.
This was cool. Everyone had a ton of fun and was probably one of the major highlights of the trip.
Man he cracks me up. He loved having the goggles on his head!

Harvey was a stud and even jumped off this ledge with his cousin, Mitt. He wasn't too sure after he hit the water, but did try it again - second time was more of a sit on the edge, then turn around a drop off, but I was still major impressed and proud :) I was trying to video and catch him at the same time, hence not the best video. Tanner was unfortunately looking for his dropped wedding band - luckily it was recovered from the bottom with a little help from brothers and nephews!
That night we had the older grandkids babysit and we had an adult dinner at the sushi bar. It was nice :)
Thursday was Tanner's birthday! Woo hoo! We had room service breakfast (a little late and not quite the surprise I was hoping for, but we got cake too!)
It was an awesome day of resort living. We had a lot of pool and beach and golf time. Most of the rest of the fam did a swim with the dolphins. Here's a bunch of beach pictures from throughout the week. Harvey actually was not a huge fan of the ocean, which kind of surprised me. There was a LOT of seaweed/kelp that had washed up all week. They were constantly trying to keep the beach clean. And he didn't like the little waves coming up on him on the beach. Thursday we actually did get him to sit by the water for a bit, but he FREAKED if any seaweed came close to him.

The Saturday before we left for Mexico we got some awful news. One of Tanner's really close cousins daughter, London, had passed away in her sleep Friday night. She had type I diabetes and had just turned 15 a couple weeks before. It was so terrible. We were able to go to their house that night before we took off. So so sad. I'm glad we were able to make it. We didn't make it home in time for the funeral - but some of the fam made this:
That night we went to dinner at the fancy Italian place, Portofino. Harv fell asleep before dinner even got started, which actually was really nice. We had the nicest waiter. It was his first day on the job and he didn't speak hardly ANY English (luckily Tanner was able to help him out a lot!) He kept saying how he really wanted to give us good service. He was so sweet and trying so hard and made a few mistakes but was so apologetic. It was kind of sad but tender as well.
Friday we spent most of our time at the pool. Harvey actually hung out in the pool for a LONG time - doing his belly flops and playing with the ball. We took a good nap that day and then ate at the only restaurant we hadn't ate at, El Patio. That was our last night (Clare and Berrie had left a day early for the funeral). Here's the rest of some random, but necessary (haha) photos...

 He liked looking down at stuff and finding this big iguana that liked to hang out on the grass.

 The next morning we caught our taxi to the airport. It was pouring rain. We had perfect weather the whole time. A rainy day was a great day to leave. It was a LONG day of lines and flights and layovers but we survived!

Although it was kind of an exhausting vacation with a busy toddler, it was so much fun to spend time with family, eat good food, be in the warm weather and make some amazing memories! And congratulations for getting to the end of this :)


  1. I think I need a Mexican vacation soon! This looks like it was a blast!

  2. It really was the BEST. You are amazing to document and "journal" it all so well. BEST kind of memories. LOVED it, LOVE you!!!