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Monday, February 13, 2012

Imbuja Island and Zanzibar

My last two weekends have involved island hopping! I went to  the islands ofImbuja and Zanzibar.

Imbuja is an island right off the coast of Dar. It is so close that you can just take a short boat ride to it! We spend Sunday out there with two other families and we had a blast. The water was breathtaking and it was fun to have some good quality family time.  I grew up going to the lake every summer so I LOVE boats and being on the water. I’m pretty sure they entire ride to the island and back I had a huge smile on my face. I felt like a kid again! Im sure my face looked something like this the entire time :)

While spending the day there I had the opportunity to go snorkeling! There is a reef not to far off the shore so it is perfect to snorkel in, especially for a first time snorkeler.  Now I have been snorkeling once in my life and its no something that I really like to do, but I said “when in Rome” and dove right in! I ended up loving it and enjoyed being able to see the life under the sea. I saw all sorts of colorful fish and one huge eel. It was snake like, and snakes are my biggest fear in life, so I quickly swam away from that thing before I had a panic attack. I tried to look for Nemo and Dori (Pixar movie character references) but they were no where to be found, but since the island is so close and we have a boat, I’m sure I will get another chance to snorkel for them!

Below are some pictures of our day spent on the island J Enjoy

 The colorful sailboats we saw while on our way out to the island!
                                                                 Heading to the boat!

 The local fishing boats

                                                   Amazing colors


                                                                               This was our little hut we had for the day.

Most recently, I had the opportunity to go to Zanzibar! (in hopes to meet some zanzibarbarians!) Only a few of you will get that movie reference, and if you do, you are my favorite person ever, if you don’t…look it up, its one of my family’s favorite movies and mine.

ANY WHO!  Zanzibar. It is a large island off the coast of Tanzania and it only takes about 20min to get there on a small airplane. The island is known for its spices. You can get all types of spices for really cheap. They also offer spice tours where you can see where they are gown and sample them. I didn’t go on this trip; I am waiting to go with my Aunt and Uncle when they come visit.  We stayed at the amazing hotel that is only about a year old and boy was it fancy. It was probably the nicest place I have ever stayed in. Although I felt like I should be on my honeymoon at this kind of resort,  I was with two kids and my cousins. Same thing right? Haha kidding! It was such a nice “vacation” and I really enjoyed living in the life of luxury for a few days. We spend most of the days laying out by the pool and walking along the beach. It was nice and relaxing. I didn’t get out much on the island because I know I will be going back a few more times. So, for now, enjoy these photos of the beautiful resort!

Large bed party o' one :)

The back porch
 Infinity pool, they had two of these babies.

 Walking out into the water during low tide
                                                            The pier
 Pier bar. That roof is really made out of grass. Pretty, but highly flammable.

Boats during low tide.

Breathtaking sunset...God is a brilliant painter.

I will be hiking Mt. Kilimanjaro very soon and my next blog will be all about my hike! Please pray for our safety and success of climbing the mountain. I am so excited to have this opportunity to do something that most people just dream about, I am truly blessed.

To be honest, I am so blessed to be over here in Africa! I am doing something that I have wanted to do which is exploring the world! I am blessed to have the opportunity, the connections and have worked so hard to save, to be able to do live here and explore and to do it as long as I am. I know that this lifestyle is not forever, but I am glad to be able to do it for now. I am learning things that I didn’t think I would learn over here. I am not really sure what I thought I would be learning or experience, but it is different and I am glad for it. I will come home a different person, but a better person for sure.
J Hope you all have a WONDERFUL Valentines Day!

Aaaaand if you are wondering, no, I do not have a “valentine” and I have not found one over here. I think that is for the best  ;) (cough cough, mother).

I will consider all you as my valentine this year.


Friday, February 3, 2012

Little eyes watching.

Not too much has happened this past week, just the same ole same ole wake up, play with kids, work out, pick up kid, play, study, class, play, dinner, movie and then bed. This may seem kinda boring, but living with a three year old is anything but! She is the cutest thing. She picks up on everything I do and say. She watches me and tries to do what I do.. its flattering and scary all at the same time!! The scary part, I have to be careful of what I say and do around her.. For example..The other day I was making a sandwich, and I pulled it out of the oven and I burned my finger, a certain four little word slipped out and all of our head whipped around to Ellis to see if she would repeat it, thank goodness she was not paying attention, but im pretty sure she that will come back to haunt us J oops. But there are some funny things she has picked up that I say! For those of you who have spent more than 10 mins with me, you know I use the word “awesome” and the phrase “I’m so excited” quite often, well, these are now common phrases of Ellis. It makes me laugh every time I hear her say them!  On the flattering part… we were up dancing to some music and she kept looking up at me and mimicking my moves. It was precious!  She will go in my room and put on my jewelry, or try to wear my scarfs, but for some reason the icing on the cake for me was this: One night we were playing and she took one of her sleeves to make her dress a one shoulder dress….I have worn a dress a few times that is one shouldered. She mentioned that she like it, but I didn’t think anything of it until this night..she was trying to make her dress look like the one I had..she wanted to be like me.

 It is so humbling to have someone who wants to be like you, or act like you. It also makes you think about how you are acting and how people perceive you. Its not just 3 year olds who do this, its people of all ages. People are always watching what you do, how you act, what you say..You may not think of yourself as a leader, but I tell you eyes are watching. Some one may be looking up to you and you don’t even know it. So what would they act out if they were trying to be like you? Its funny how a three year old can teach you so much and really make you think about your actions in all aspects of life. So, how do people perceive you?

On another lighter note I promise I will have some more interesting and action packed posts to come! I am hiking Mt. Kilimanjaro at the end of the month and I have been training super hard for it! It will be one of the most challenging things I have ever done, but I am more than ready to take it on. Please pray for our safe travels.

I do have big plans for the weeks proceeding Kili, both involve some traveling and bikinis.  It shall be fun. I will post all about it when I return. I’m excited to explore a little bit more of Tanzania!

I will leave you with some pictures of lately. Have a wonderful weekend, and remember..

People are always watching…how would they mimic you?

The cliff over looking the ocean where we had tea

 My and my buddy Ellis out for tea. This was her treat for pooping in the potty. Yes, we talk about pooping in the potty..ALOT. She asks me everyday if I have pooped in the potty or if I have put a sticker on the chart like her, for pooping in the potty. This kid cracks me up! Just in case you are wondering.. Lets just say, I always earn my stickers.

The kiddos...yes they are brother and sister..and yes they have the same parents.. I like to call them Ebony and Ivory.

Talk about multitasking!! Im a pro at this stuff. Kinda scary.

I will leave you with these monkeys!!!!! 
They are on the road right outside our compound just chilling in the trees. I took the picture as Betsy and I were on our walk training for Kilimanjaro..
And no, they did not throw their poo at us.....this time at least.