Fitness Magazine

One Week in Paradise

By Khourianya @khourianya
Now that the jetlag is wearing off and my post-vacation cold is setting in - I figured it was about time to recap my family vacation to the Dominican Republic a bit.
One Week in Paradise
Seriously - the goal for the week was just fun and relaxation.  We've had a stressful few months around our house and are gearing up for several more weeks of stress - the break was absolutely necessary to detach us a bit so we could keep going.
Sunday was insane...We flew out at around 1 am on the 25th, and I had been up since 6am on the 24th.   First we flew into Toronto where we met up with the rest of the group.  My kids, incredibly, were awesome fliers.
One Week in Paradise
As soon as we stepped off the plane - my parents, Aunt and Uncle and cousin were all RIGHT THERE.  No need to hunt for anyone.  They didn't know we were flying into that gate so it was just serendipity that they happened to be there for the washroom.  It was a happy reunion with tons of hugs and chatter.  It was around 6am so I plied myself with coffee (since my sleep had amounted to maybe a half hour on the flight in) and we relaxed until it was time to board for Punta Cana.
I'm not sure any of us slept on the flight to the DR.  My girls were seriously sleep deprived but total troopers.  Dood had some issues with her ears on the descent but overall not too bad.
Helloooo Punta Cana!
One Week in Paradise
We got to the resort and, as it turned out, were the only people in the group who had not upgraded to the Adults Only section.  Everyone else got swooped into a really long tour but our little family checked in and headed to our room to freshen up and then go find a bite to eat. There was a welcome dinner that night for the wedding but we left early and headed to bed.
Monday was the girlies fifth birthday and was a true day of celebration.  We played in the sand, splashed in the ocean,
One Week in Paradise
and had a birthday party in our room, complete with cake and family.
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
There were even parrots on the beach, and that made their day!
One Week in Paradise
The resort decorated our door for the occasion.
One Week in Paradise
That night, I went out for my cousin's bachelorette party, but since I'm old - I didn't last long.   I spent most of it wandering around chatting with my other cousin.
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
While I was out that night, Montezuma decided to exact revenge on Doodle for something so we had a pretty sick girl on our hands for Tuesday and didn't stray far from the room.  Tuesday night, it hit Buggie.  On the suggestion of my uncle's sister, We spent the rest of the week disinfecting toothbrushes and medicine cups in vodka to kill any of the bacteria that might have taken hold during rinsing.  We were lucky to have a pharmacy onsite so, in my halting spanish, I was able to get them some meds that worked to clear everything up.
Wednesday was the exciting day - the long-awaited wedding.  It was held in a beautiful pavilion in the garden and was followed with a champagne toast and photos.  
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
We had time to kill before the dinner so we went back to the room to get a nap in for the girlies.  Then, things got REALLY exciting.  I was laying on the bed reading and then the whole bed started to shake.  The headboard banged on the wall.  I was sure it was the neighbours firing up the jacuzzi, but hubby was quick to speculate...
yep - EARTHQUAKE!
#TrueStory ... And then we had an earthquake... Really. #PuntaCana
— Cori Nicholls (@khourianya) May 28, 2014

It lasted only 5-10 seconds and came in at 5.8 on the Richter Scale.  I can only imagine how different this vacation recap would be if it had lasted longer than that!
Then there was the dinner where plenty of jokes about the earth moving on the wedding day happened...
One Week in Paradise
By Thursday, both girls were feeling much better so we carried on with our vacation.  I believe this was the day when the guy with the billy club on the beach informed us we were encroaching on the adults only section and we were asked to leave.
It was then that we decided to just hang out in the pool as much as possible.
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
One Week in Paradise
We managed to miss sunset almost every freaking night, but on Thursday, we finally wandered down for it...hardly looked like a sunset at all, but we still got cute pics :)
One Week in Paradise
That night was market night at the resort so we went down to see if we could procure souvenirs without being ripped off.   The girls spent their birthday money - we spent nothing.  Pretty sure we still got ripped off.
Friday and Saturday, we dropped the girlies off at the Kids club for a few hours in the morning.
One Week in Paradise
We spent the afternoons in the pool. Saturday night, it was time to pack up since our bus would be picking us up before 11am.  Somehow, I managed to cram everything and then some into the 4 carry on bags we had brought.  It was touch and go there for a few minutes, but I did it.
Then, Sunday, it was back to Punta Cana International Palapa - er, Airport - and on our way back to Toronto.  Customs and tear-filled goodbyes ate up our stopover.  We barely had time to grab a quick dinner at the airport before hopping on our plane home!  It was midnight by the time we landed in Calgary.
All in all - it was a wonderful week.  We got to spend plenty of quality time with family that we don't get to see often (most of them were meeting Hubby and the girls for the very first time - and hubby and I have been together nearly 12 years!).  I am not sure we'd go back to the Dominican, but it was incredibly beautiful.  I'll be doing a resort review soon so you will understand better once I do.
In other news, I am very happy to be back in my own bed with my fluffy pillows and drinking water from wherever I want.  Now, if only I could have avoided the post-vacation manfluenza that hit me.

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