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Day 228 - My new love, The Bahamas!

>> Sunday, April 25, 2010

Well, I'm back from The Bahamas.




I have fallen in love with The Bahamas, and the Caribbean in general. What a place!! Just being in the airplane on arrival and seeing those amazing turquoise waters coming into view took my breath away. It really is like how it looks in the movies and the brochures - it's that beautiful.

We stayed at the Sheraton Nassau, and it by far exceeded our expectations. We had a beautiful room on the first floor, with a walk out to the beach and a spectacular view of the ocean. The hotel is on Cable Beach, which is far enough away from the busyness of downtown and Paradise Island (home of The Atlantis hotel) that is was quiet, peaceful, and relaxing.

We had some great food, swam in the ocean a lot, lay in the sun (and I got a pretty bad sunburn - SPF 50 or higher definitely recommended for the Caribbean sun!!), went parasailing, lay on hammocks, read quite a bit, went to Paradise Island, and overall just had a great, relaxing time! I'm really glad we went, and for a "mini vacation" this was a great, great choice. I'm already looking forward to going back (hopefully sometime soon) for a longer stay and checking out some other islands of the Bahamas!

Highlites of the trip:

- swimming in the ocean and just being underwater with my eyes open and in wonder at the beauty of the clear waters

- walking barefoot on the beach

- beautiful, out-of-this-world sunset on our last night

- having some great conversations with taxi-cab drivers about local life and the culture

- parasailing and being so high above the water and just looking around at all the beauty around us

- waiting at the airport for the trip home - we got there really early, but it was fine 'cause they have a big outdoor waiting area with flowery trees and benches. I just sprawled out on a bench under a tree and read and quite enjoyed the wait! It was super relaxed and laid-back at the airport and just reminded me a lot of the great laid-back attitude we loved when we were in Uganda.

- the locals - really friendly, talkative and funny.

Thank-you Bahamas for a great vacation and can't wait to come back!

Pics from the top:

- my hubby's message in the sand
- I fell in love with the turquoise water
- view of the beach from our hotel room
- I've never seen a cruise ship before, so I was a little bit stunned at how big they are!
- me and a palm tree
- me with another palm tree (who doesn't love palm trees!)
- at The Atlantis hotel resort just hangin' out
- baby sting rays
- the aquarium at The Atlantis
- watch out for the shark!
- Chris and I parasailing
- the view from a dock by our hotel


Day 220

>> Saturday, April 17, 2010

What a week, what a week, and oh so glad it's almost done. It's been a busy one, but . . . I am officially now on vacation!!

Okay - I still actually have some things to finish up for work, but I can finish them from home and just send them in via email, so by this time tomorrow I will have no actual "work" to do for an entire week!

I am super stoked to get to the Bahamas and just spend a few days lazing around on the beach and taking in some sun and the blue waters of the Caribbean! I'm definitely ready for a get-away, and hope to come back relaxed, refreshed and ready to tackle some big things I know are ahead.

I wanted to share a video I discovered on youtube today. It just made me smile after a long day, so I'm hoping it'll make you smile too, or maybe help turn your day around if you've been having a bad one:


Day 216

>> Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Long day at work today. I worked an 11-7 shift, which felt a little odd as I'm so used to working the early shift now (which is 7-3pm). At least the sun was still up when I got home, so I guess it wasn't too bad.

Tonight I'm just taking it easy and am gonna' try and go to bed early as tomorrow I'm back to the morning shift. Tomorrow's a busy day 'cause after work I have to clean up the house a little bit as we're having a Uganda fundraising meeting here Thursday night, and then I need to really try and finish writing one of the songs I'm working on. There's a few songwriting contests coming up that I'm entering and one of the deadlines is coming up very fast. I'm continually being amazed at how fast time is going by - how is it that it's already April? How is it that it's already been 2 weeks since my birthday?!

Speaking of my birthday - I have to say I'm really enjoying this whole being 30 thing. Seriously, it's pretty great. I know it may sound weird to say, but I actually do feel different. Not that I feel old, but I definitely feel different. I wouldn't say I feel "wiser", it's more like I feel more sure of myself. Things continue to become more "in focus", and it really is an amazing gift to be able to wake up each day and know that you are on the right path. I'm also becoming a lot better at defining my priorities and not feeling like I have to apologize for my priorities being what they are.

Before - not just "before I turned 30" but more for the entirety of my twenties, I always felt such a strong need to apologize for things and to also never say "no" to people. I would commit myself to things I knew I didn't want to do or knew I didn't have time for, but I always felt too guilty to say "no" or if I did - would apologize profusely for saying no.

I guess maybe it's just getting older and realizing that time is a finite thing and we all only get a certain amount of it, but I'm pretty much at the point now where I really don't have a problem saying no. I know what my priorites are for myself and for my family, and I don't have that nagging sense of "oh maybe I should do this" or "maybe I should have agreed to this, even though I don't want to". It's not about being rude or not being giving of your time and your abilities, but knowing what your path is and what you're here to do and how to use your time to fulfill that.

Anyway - I'm starting to ramble here, but to all my friends out there who are approaching thirty and are perhaps dreading it or feeling "old", trust me on this - it rocks so far. I wish I could have felt like this when I was 20, but we all need to grow and go through uncertainty to get to the point where we know ourselves. If aging only gets better, I say bring it on!!


Day 213

>> Saturday, April 10, 2010

It's been a loooooong week. I am very, very incredibly glad and thankful that I can now start my "weekend" as I have tomorrow and Monday off (2 days off in a row - woo hoo!!). Chris and I are hopeful that tomorrow's a nice day weather-wise, and that after church and visiting Stan at the hospital we can go on a nice drive and just enjoy the country-side and an afternoon/evening of doing nothing much at all. Monday, I plan on sleeping in and then spending the rest of the day writing. Of course I'm sure there will be some laundry, cleaning and other little errands in there - but overall I'm looking forward to a pretty low-key couple of days.

I wanted to thank everyone for your thoughts and prayers for Stanley - he's still in the hospital but has moved from the ICU back down to a "normal" floor. He's in pretty rough shape though, and there has been talk of perhaps moving him back up to the ICU, but at this point it's all still wait and see. He pretty much has everything an elderly person could have, but he's a fighter and is holding up as well as can be expected. He will most likely be in the hospital for quite awhile, but we're happy that he's at North York General as we've been really impressed by the nurses and the level of care he's been getting so far.

We ended up cancelling our Mexico vacation as Stan was really unstable there for a few days, but we've now rebooked a shorter vacation in the Bahamas for a little later on this month. We both really need a break and to just get away for a few days and get some sun, so as the Bahamas are closer (and cheaper right now), we decided Cable Beach in Nassau was the way to go. We're staying at the Sheraton right on the beach, and the pics and reviews on tripadvisor.com are really good, so cross your fingers for us that it's a nice, relaxing get-away!

Music-wise, things are coming along - I'm re-recording "Never knew me well" as I thought it was missing a little something. I also stumbled upon a really great melody line the other day when I was fooling around on the piano, and have used that to start writing a song that I think is going to be something really special (I hope)! I'm getting a lot better on the guitar, and have graduated to more chords and am even now strumming without a pick and doing some finger-picking! I have a long, long way to go before I'd feel comfortable saying "I'm a guitar player", but I know I'll get there!

Also - my dear husband (aka my "manager") has started designing an official website for me and my music. I'm really excited to have a site just dedicated to my music and songwriting, and he's a great website designer, so hopefully it'll be up and running soon with lots of great content, music and video files!

Hope everyone is enjoying the Spring so far (and hopefully this last cold-snap is the last one)!!


Day 206

>> Saturday, April 3, 2010

Sorry I haven't been posting a lot lately - it's been a very difficult and busy week. Chris' dad Stanley has been in and out of the hospital for the past year, but in the last week and a half he hasn't been very well at all.

He was admitted to North York General on Wednesday as he was having difficulty breathing - they found fluid in his lungs and diagnosed him with COPD and Congestive Heart Failure. They also discovered that his aortic aneurysm has grown from 2.5cm to 7cm. His heart rate was at about 125 beats per minute, and his blood pressure and oxygen levels were really low.

On Thursday afternoon he seemed to be getting a lot better, and the doctor was even saying they may release him on Monday if he continued to improve as well as he had been.

Today however, he was rushed to the ICU as his lungs pretty much filled up with fluid and he couldn't breathe - his heart rate is at between 130-140 beats per minute and all his other levels are really bad. He's hooked up to a non-invasive ventilator right now and all sorts of other machines and IV's and tubes, etc.

We're still waiting to hear from the ICU doctors what the prognosis is and what can be done, etc. Please keep both Stanley and Chris in your prayers as they both need a lot of love and support right now.

:( Suz


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