Posts Tagged With: Music

Honeymoon Road trip – part 2!

Our honeymoon happened to overlap with Matts birthday so I wanted our next pitstop to be extra special. Utah or Nevada, hmmm. I searched for hidden jems and popular attractions and didn’t have to look any farther once landing on this beauty….

The Mystic Hot Springs of Monroe Utah!

👉🏽 CLICK HERE to see the video of our adventure at the Springs!

It’s a quaint little community many miles away from well, anything! Although the main attraction was the natural hot springs that bubble up on the property, the selling point for me was the accommodations. You had your choice between a van, covered wagon or old fashion school bus, all which had been converted into lovable spaces. We chose the bus!

The outside had a small patio which was the perfect space for Matt to cook us up some dinner on our camping stove while we sat and took in the ambiance. Inside there was a small dining area, full bed, couch and sink that took up most of the space with a bright tapestry separating the door from the room. The door, mind you, was the original swinging model with no lock or safe way of securing it completely closed. The bright side was being surrounded by people who generally gave off the hippie “one love” vibe with no concern of taking from you. A lot of bare feet, beards, braids and smiles greeted us as we walked the property.

The highlight of our stay was by far the music! We happen to hit the weekend when a female bluegrass brand was passing through. The Sweet Lilies had a magnetic way of drawing you in to their soulful sound and unique style. We were sitting front row and enjoyed every minute! To make it even more memorable, one of the girls had spoke with Matt prior and found out he was a musician as well. This led to them inviting him on stage to jam out for a few songs, what a rare opportunity!

If you’re ever driving through the dessert of Monroe Utah and need some entertainment or place to crash, I highly suggest you take a dip in the springs and walk the grounds barefoot!

The rest of our trip was through the dry desert of Nevada finally landing us in Northern California. Here’s a few more random photos to wrap up the road trip!

Categories: Accommodations, Art, Travel talk, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vans Warped Tour and the “Outrageous Noise”

Vans Warped Tour is the largest traveling music festival in the United States. The skateboard shoe brand Vans, has sponsored the event every year since 1995 and now it’s the longest running touring music festival in North America.

For all of you long-time followers, you may recall two years ago in which I was on a different side of this event. Touring with my favorite band Heritage brought a completely different angle. Check it out by clicking this fancy link! 

Today, it is my workplace.

        
My position is to simply intrigue attendees to register to win a new Ford F150. By filling out a form, they get a free t-shirt or sunglasses (and a few spare moments in the shade, which I think was the main reason people walked over to us).

   
My partners in crime for the day included these fine gentlemen, Sean and Derick.    

 
This new friend and fellow gypsy made my day even better than it already was. Meet Kary Parks, a kind hearted musician with a passion for helping others. If you’d love to check out her new tunes (I highly suggest it) please enjoy her website at www.karajack.com

 

Handstand shot?  But of course! This time it’s with Kary (who happens to be an ex-gymnast!)

 The genre of the music ranges slightly between punk, heavy metal, rock and hip-hop. A few of the more popular bands were listed as Wonder Years, Pierce the Veil, Family Force Five, Autumn burns Red and Black Veil Brides.

      

  

  

Lets turn the focus now and soak up the platform for a people watching event. This type of music draws in all types of styles. Instead of describing it, I’ll just let you take a look. 

      

 

I should of sent out a memo for hair color specials. I would of been in business! 

 Along with a variety of appearances, it clearly attracts all ages as well!  


They called it the “Reverse Daycare”.  An air-conditioned tent for all of the chaperons to relax, cool down and wait for their children to finish enjoying the outrageous noise (as one parent described it). 

  

I feel like this neon paint will provide some pretty unique tan lines come morning. 
Tan lines? Yeh, to say at the least. It was a scorching afternoon and many were walking around like burnt zombies. Dangerously hot, if you want to take it that far. Medics were constantly wheeling people to the first aid tent. Then there was our little nurse (Kary) concerning for anyone that walked by who appeared to be in need of a cool down.  
 I thought this was a brilliant idea.  A small water slide with a man on hand to control of the water hose. Ahhh… 

 
 
Lunch time brought options for everyone. Corn dogs, fried potatoes and snow cones were just a few of what I saw people walking with.
    

   Our breaks were conveniently located in the air conditioned truck for a foot resting and cool down.

 My lunch? You’re probably not shocked to find me huddled in the truck-o-air with my tasty sack-lunch!   

 

Here are just a few more random shots taken throughout the day. The first line up is a series of photos I took after watching a mob of fans anxiously wait for for their favorite band to sign posters and “acually shake hands”!

       

Thank you Kary, Sean and Derick for making it a smile filled day on the job! Cheers till next time! 

 

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Grass-bottom dance floor

Have you ever been in a yard and thought, “I could throw some epic parties back here” or “We should put a stage over there… and a bar on that side. Shoots, let’s bring in some portable bathrooms and a sink for the guests!” Well this family thought of it, did it and have been sharing their space for years now.  

If you recall, last time I was at this venue, I had come to surprise my mom for her birthday and the universe placed the band Heritage right in my lap. See that episode by clicking here.

What a wonderful return to the Williams Backyard Boogie!

  
   

  

  

 
    

 

Within moments of arriving, you begin to hear the unfolding of lawn chairs and the bottles of wine opening. By the time sound-check is over, there’s the smell of home cooked bbq and the energy of playful kids taking advantage of the wide open spaces.

This time, joining the grass bottom dance floor is some of the families and companions of the band, local artist that we’ve grown to know personally and a few new buddies (future travel partners). What a spectacular bunch!

    

 
   

  Let the tunes begin!
 

  
  
  
  

The smiling eyes next to me in the collage below has got to be one of their biggest fans.  With a heart of gold and a contagious laugh, I always enjoy sharing the dance floor with Miss Jodi. Here we are at a few shows from Tallahassee to Panama City… and now tonight!

  
Hey ladies, you know when you’ve been dancing all night in those uncomfortable shoes on the hard floors of a club? You should try barefoot, front stage on fresh grass and soft dirt. Glorious!

 

There’s really no need to set up the following picture… It’s just one fantastic photo bomb.

 Well done Lane… well done.

 
Say what?! It’s Dannica! This wonderful vocalist is the leading woman in Schatzi and The String Boffin that I introduced to you last year. Remember this post?

Tonight she joins me in a duo handstand photo. It makes me giggle that although we were several feet away from each other, she still managed to appear with her foot on my head. Figures since she’s a yogi.

   

“Got to visualize a better day… to materialize a better way”. The band Heritage

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Schatzti + The String Boffin

I’m thankful to say that my schedule has been so packed with glorious events, that I’m a bit behind in the blog routine. To catch up, I’m going to wrap up my return to Florida with an entry based on the live music I enjoy so much.

First up, the gorgeous Dannica Lowlerly and her talented brother Ben Parsons. Together they perform as Schatzti + The String Boffin.

Translation:
Schatzi [shaht-see] German slang – darling; sweetheart.
Boffin [bof-in] British slang – scientist; technical expert.

Mom and I were pleased to catch them at this small venue especially considering that they just opened for the Rascal Flats!

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You know when you’re watching a band and you think, “I bet those guys are fun to hang out with” or “I wonder if they’re always that happy”? Well, those are not only thoughts but a reality with this duo. Genuine smiles and relaxed energy flow as they share their magnetic sound.

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My dark photos and lack of audio certainly doesn’t do them justice. For quality pics and samples of their unique sound, please check out www.dannicalowery.com

More music? Who could it be but none other than some of my favorite guys doing what they do best. I know I’ve included them in several posts, but for good reason. Not only do they produce entertaining music, but their message vibrates a positive feel-good time. Each personality in this group balances out the band we all know and love… Heritage!

It was our first time to this venue called Club La Vela, a popular night club that promotes a daytime pool party on the weekends. I suppose it’s an easy way to chill with friends while listening to good music and cool off in the hot Florida sun.

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Remember sweet Jodi from the tour last year seen in “A man becomes what he thinks about”? The first picture is from that journey followed by one on this day. Love her!

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Mom, I feel like I don’t tell you enough how much I appreciate you not only as a mother, but a friend (and dance partner!). All of these shows just wouldn’t be the same without your company. Thanks for be the perfect date. Love you!

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4th of July… Santa Rosa Beach style

I’ve spent the last three years celebrating the independence of the USA in Northern California with some dear friends. A houseboat trip, fireworks and quality people definitely equals a memorable holiday. For a change, this 4th of July I chose to be near water on the Gulf of Mexico in Florida with my mom.

Not much description is needed to represent the outdoor venue in which our talented friend, Geoff Mcbride was spreading his love.

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Music + happy humans = Dancing!

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If this beautiful couple looks familiar, it’s because they were there the first time I fell in love with the music of Heritage (who happens to enhance the post below)!

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For the night of the 4th, we were lucky to score our favorite tunes from none other than the band Heritage!

Set up in an open alley, they were the center of attention to a beach side block party.

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Enthusiasm? And the winner is…

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Sun down and an intermission brought us all to the coast for fireworks off the dock.

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“One more song! One more song!”

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Although this photo isn’t amazing quality, I dig the glowing jewelry.

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Just as the band was finishing up, mom and I ran into one of my new favorite hair clients and long lost friend that I didn’t even know I had… Remember Stephen from recent posts? He’s back!

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After a day of music and an evening block party with quality vibes, what summer holiday would be complete without a recovery day on the beach? Same sand, lovely mother and a creative handstand shot (not sure if that was helpful to the recovery by the way) to celebrate the anniversary of our Independence Day.

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For fun facts and more about this holiday, check out the post called 4th of July in the USA (or just click on it).

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Beaches, boats and ballads.

I finally arrived in Florida to visit my marvelous mom and naturally, we had our toes in the sand within moments of my arrival.

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Surprise for me! On this night we got to go to a show of my ultimate favorite local band, Heritage! You may remember these quality fellas from the post, “A man becomes what he thinks about”. With music that feeds the soul and energy that boosts the mood, you really can’t go wrong by surrounding yourself with their unique vibe!

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This is my favorite photo of the evening simply because of the bright smiling blonde enjoying the music. Priceless!

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Who’s this? No seriously, you can barely see us… but standing next to me is a fine gentleman by the name of Tyler. Within moments of our first eye contact, the conversation was flowing as if we’d known each other for years.

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2 days later

Did I mention that this new pal wake boards? With my quick acceptance to his casual offer, I found myself on a boat with non other than fun loving Tyler and a handful of his closest buddies. Yep, it happened.

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The drive inland takes us lakeside to a perfectly placed country house that just so happens to be the home of Andrew. I didn’t ask permission to expose his full name or his professional past… Let’s just say some may consider him to be “kind of a big deal”. (To be said sarcastically but half way serious).

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Time to suit up, stretch out, get wet and throw some tricks! I’m speaking in regards to their abilities of course. Mine would go more like, “Suit up, cross your fingers, get cold and score some bruises!”. Either way, good times all around.

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I forgot to have someone snap a picture of me doing super-skills (ha.ha.ha), but I did snag a few sweet ones of the boys!

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Check out the clouds in these next photos. Definitely a typical Florida sky showing signs of potential rain with a side of rolling thunder!

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That’s our cue to head in and tie up. My curiosity peaked when I couldn’t see a dock, but was quickly tamed when they informed me of the plan. His backyard had flooded a bit which made for a smooth transition from boat to water… to slimy mud… to grass… and finally to his deck. Ignoring the idea of water moccasins tangling between by ankles or swamp alligators sniffing out my new lotion, I jumped off like the rest of them and made the trek towards his house.

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With the barbecue fired up, we made time for quality conversation and an assault attack of some yellow flies (please google them if you’ve never heard of these aggressive insects). Not pictured below was the entire group running, swatting, slapping and yelling threatening phrases at these vicious little creatures!

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The sunset brought a calm ending to an energetic day and the perfect opportunity for a handstand.

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Much gratitude for the open invitation and hospitality shown by this group. I look forward to the next adventure… Soon to come!

ADDITION:
A week later, I got to head out again except this time there was twice as many riders and some of the best in the world (seriously). These famous athletes were shooting film to promote next seasons gear. From England to Australia and a few Cali kids, this boat towed some extreme talent and I was lucky enough to observe!

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Without much explaining, here are some photos I captured throughout the day. I’m sure they’re not as incredible as the ones snapped by the professional (that’s using a waterproof-inspector gadget camera getup), but hey…

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Positive people, amazing wake boarders and another event in which I was honored to be a happy little fly on the wall.

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Creative color of the day…

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Dreamcatcher with the Hawk!

Recently I’ve slowed down the blog posts as I’m back in the states to replenish the travel funds. As I described in How do you afford all of that traveling, I generally volunteer for room and board and cut hair on the road to accumulate extra cash. Well, I can only save up so many flyer miles until I actually have to purchase the flight and thus, I’m currently working in my home state of California to prepare for the next excurssion.

Side note: I feel it’s necessary to express that although I’m here to “prepare” for the next journey, I do my best to appreciate everyday. To be in the “now” is something I try to be conscious of and embrace as I skip down the beautiful path that we call life.

Mark, Better known as Hawk, is a brightly spirited man thats eager to share the love he’s put into music and is currently collecting donations to release his first album. We met back when recess was the highlight of the day and Whitney Houston battled George Michaels for the top spot of the billboard charts.

One must smile when you see this guy!

This is where you stop reading and take a quick peek at his fundraising page, Dream Catcher Hawk Debut!

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Moving on to a brilliant evening that was made up of a group of positive thinking, open-hearted friends that gathered to support my long time pal. First here’s Anna and Tim, they opened their home to all of us and did so with smiles and an unexpected dinner that was offered without hesitation. Kale and quinoa salad with butternut squash soup… Yes please!

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Standing tall (inside and out) is Hawk. Next to him is Mackenzie, a girl with a golden heart that will brighten your world with few words and a sincere smile. The happy fella next to me? You should recognize Mike from the last stretch in Europe. Group hug for everyone!

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I wanted to add this adorable photo of Ann and Tim’s kids loving the company. Good times!

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Heading to the backyard, we found a beautifully designed layout that seemed to be made just for the gathering of great friends.

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Let the blissful tunes begin! If some of these faces look familiar, it could be from the post in which they captured my new found love for the mat at Leap Yoga Studio.

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Did you notice the white dome in the panoramic photo from above? Welcome to the colorful, sound enhancing room of joy. Well done friends!

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Do you ever wonder if there’s a group of individuals out there that truly desire genuine peace in their life… bundles of positive energy that attract more light to their already vibrant world? My heart beats with ease just knowing this bunch of bright people who are constantly spreading the warmth with their daily choices. One love!

Categories: Art, Travel talk, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“The Yao of cooking”

Again I start with the idea that people cross your path for a reason, a season or a lifetime. On this day, I’m confident to say that I acquired all three of them!

Days prior I met Claudia who was introduced to me by Bree (the girl I met on the flight to Asia). The three of us partook in Monk Chat that led us to a beautiful organic cafe with this sign posted:

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After meeting the enthusiastic owner we decided to return in celebration of her book release. Plus, free gourmet organic food, live music and a multi cultural crowd? Can’t really go wrong with any part of that!

Blending with us is on this little adventure is also sweet Maddi, a new gal in our dorm room that was easy to chat with and willing to join! When we arrived the double story cafe was packed full of smiles, glowing energy and enough bare feet to question the reason we even bother wearing shoes.

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Downstairs there were sample trays full of her own recipes from flavorful spring rolls and sweet dip to a pumpkin-veggie-nut mixture that I could have swam in. We over heard the waiter ask the owner “how much food will be served?” Her response, “…until everyone has had their fill”. That alone should give you an idea of what kind of woman we’re talking about. Up stairs introduced you to floor tables, bean bags and more shining faces. You really couldn’t frown in a place like this!

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Recognize that jolly bearded man? Yes, another brilliant unexpected path crossing as that guy was the English teacher for the Monks that we just met. Turns out he’s also a fan of this quaint cafe trying to make a difference in the community. What joy reached his face when he glanced over and saw the three of us smiling back!

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There’s so much to look at in this shop! Have wandering eyes? Me too.

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The food eating slows and now it’s time for sweet Yao and her colleagues to share a little bit about their goals in regards to supporting local growers and artists. This is when what I think is going to be a neat little taste of a locals perspective, turns and hits me with an unpredictable love-punch straight to the heart.
There were times I felt like they talking directly to me…. maybe in my teary eyed little world, they were.

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The band started back up and books start flying off the shelf. Not literally, but I do think there were definitely multiple reasons of why the books were jumping into the hands of all of these smiles. The author is a quality, personable human being that puts just as much effort into her community as she does in her recipes.

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Instead of paying a huge company to bind the books in large quantities, she found this local artist that personally hand-bound (I think that’s how you say it) every single one. When I approached the table, I took time to look at each design and picked my absolute favorite. She smiled and held my hand as she whispered “I only made one like that, I’m glad you chose it.”

Heart…melting…again.

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You can imagine the natural high I was floating on as we left this building of love. I met people who had just the right thing to say at that moment, connected with some that I plan on seeing again and bonded even more so with my dear friend Bree.

Dear Yao,
Your soft voice speaks in volumes through your genuine eyes and passion towards helping others. I’m honored to have met you and I give thanks for your encouraging words and devotion to leading by example. You are a hero!

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Sebel and the Beatles in Germany

Although I’m always sad to leave my Dutch friends and say farewell to Amsterdam, I was eager to move on to our next stop… Recklinghausen! Haven’t heard of this place? Not many have, as it’s a smaller city in the north west of Germany and the home to many of my dear friends. This trip we’ll be staying with Carina. Yes, the precious girl with a huge heart that came to Costa Rica with me last May after we had met during Oktoberfest years ago. Recap time!

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Hayden and I reach Carina by fast train departing Amsterdam and arriving to Recklinghausen within a few hours.

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Leave it to my energetic friend, she gives us the option at the train station if we wanted to go see her boyfriends band play or watch a different musician perform elsewhere. Considering I met her boyfriend last year and listened to his album during our road trip through Europe, it was an easy decision for me! We got back to her place, changed our clothes, got a bite to eat and off we went to the show!

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One of the first things I noticed about this concert, was the variety of people in the audience. There was a range of ages and styles but all were enjoying the entertainment in front of them. How refreshing!

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Naturally, I found myself behind the booth, sporting the merchandise (and getting sweaty hugs from the band members). What better way to sell it, than to wear it!

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The show continues with a guest musician who decided to play “hands” with the guitarist, the crowd loved it!

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A successful show and a nights rest leads us to the next day in which there was more music to appreciate. Sebel, the lead singer from the band above, also fills in as drummer when needed. On this day, it’s a Beatles cover band performing as a part of a street fair.

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Also noticeable here is the range of attendees enjoying this sunny day in Germany.

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Hey look! It’s Jenni and Carina, the two wonderful girls that came to Amsterdam to surprise me last week… Love you ladies!

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As they finished the set, I took a quick walk around to the other performers and vendors.

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What do you get when you combine Disneyland and Great America in Germany? Find out in the next post!

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Big kids pretending to be adults

This is my third time to the amazing island of Barbados which speaks volumes considering I rarely return to a destination unless there’s friends, family or a culture that speaks to me. Here, I feel like there’s all three!

To get warmed up for the week ahead (that you should be very excited about), I’m going to share the annual boat cruise on MC Buccaneer. This limited, invite only event (yes, I feel extremely special to be one of the attendees) is a gathering to take in the sun, enjoy some drinks, and move to Caribbean music.

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Flash collage from last years cruise! To see the full post, click here.

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This year brought just as much fun with the same incredible people and even more memories to pile into the book of Barbados. First things first, meet the bartenders and the entertaining DJ Puffy.

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And we’re off! The music steps up and the games begin!

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Ooh look, we have a birthday today! Sweet Aldo gets cup cakes and punch right out the fruit! Oh grown-ups pretending to be children… or should I say big kids pretending to be adults?

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Wait 30 min after eating to swim? Nope. Remember the safety flotation devices from last year? They’re back, just for our protection.

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Time to head back to the dock. Which really just means more dancing, more smiles and the overall energy kicking up a notch!

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Another success my friends! Thank you Daniel, Sean and Dwayne.

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