Missing In Action

Y’all, I’m so sorry I have been MIA for 3 weeks!!  Summer is such a busy season for us & it makes it so hard to keep up with this little blog thingy… ;)  adding our crazy work schedule to our weekend beachin’ and my most recent trip up to Ohio to visit my grandma, well, there goes 21 days of July!  Oh, and my cousin Kelly is visiting from Chicago! Whew, what a month!

So I have compiled a few pics I’ve taken recently.  Some are from our 4th of July in Vero Beach and the others were taken at an outdoor concert event in Hamilton, OH.  I still have a few more things I want to post from our trip to Thailand, but I figured I’d take a break from editing pics and just post what’s been going on lately… Hope everyone has a great week!

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Elephant Trekking in Phuket

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best.day.EVER!!!

I can honestly say that this was one of the greatest moments of my life.  Climbing onto the back of one of the top 10 largest animals to roam the planet and riding up the mountains, through the jungle to witness landscape views of the Andaman Sea… wow… just wow! I fell in love with our elephant.  She was 55 years old, so sweet, and so gentle.  I don’t think we could have had a better experience.  The trekking company that we used was called Kok Chang Safari and they were phenomenal.  We set everything up via email, they offered transportation to and from our hotel (which was an hour away), and the elephants were treated like royalty!  When I say royalty, I mean these elephants get to roam the jungle, get a bath after each trek they go on, and get fed TONS of bananas every single day!  The safari only uses females because they have a better temperament than the males which, obviously, is a good thing…  Now, the guide did have a bullhook in case of an emergency, these are BIG wild animals after all, but he did not need to use it, not even one time.  She was very well trained, did everything the guide asked, and posed for some really great pictures!  I loved her.  Like, I want Husband to get me one for my Christmas/ Birthday this year, loved her.

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^^view from the top^^

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^^feeding the baby^^

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^^and feeding homegirl^^

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^^Husband got in on the action as well!^^

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So glad I was able to check this off my bucket list.  Hopefully someday, when Husband & I have little ones, we will be able to come back and experience this again.  It was truly amazing.

Bangkok :: Part 3

Our final day in Bangkok was spent cruising the canals of the infamous Damnoen Saduak Floating Market.  We arrived right when they opened (as advised by the concierge at our hotel) and by the time we left a couple hours later the place was really starting to fill up.  It was a little more touristy than I had hoped, but the food definitely made up for all the haggling and repetitive products the locals were trying to sell.  There were men & women lined up in their little boats with food fryers, little skillets on small stove tops, and big pots and pans serving up all of the traditional Thai dishes and honestly, some of the things I tried here made my life complete.  Husband & I are obsessed with Thai food.  It was one of the main reasons we chose to visit the country!  There are some Sundays when we are at home that we dedicate to going to the local Thai Temple just for the homemade/ authentic meals.  Look up the Thai Temples where you are, and try it at least once, you will not be disappointed.  Anyway, back to the market, they really had a lot to offer such as Thai silks, plants, hand painted hair accessories, hand carved elephant & buddha sculptures, etc… we didn’t really have a ton of space for souvenirs but I did get a head scarf and some traditional Thai candies to bring back to the states with me.  We had a great time even though it was hotter than heck!  The locals continually offered their cheap beer which kept Husband happy and I got to shop…  It was a great day!

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And finally, the moment you’ve all been waiting for… Ladyboys!

Now this was truly an experience to be had (although Husband seems to think differently)!  I loved it!  Some of these Ladyboys were much more beautiful than most people I know!  No joke, if you saw these performers in regular attire, walking down the street, there is no way that you would know that they were not female (well, some “technically” are female).  The show was a little cheesy, I will admit, but it was so mesmerizing.  You couldn’t take your eyes off of them!  It was quite a show! ;)

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^^ Yep. I had to. ^^

Greetings from Bangkok :: Part 2

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Lumphini Park is to Bangkok what Central Park is to New York City.  It’s a large plot of beautifully manicured landscaping with plenty of shade, cute little lakes, and random shelters to hide from the rain when needed, tightly surrounded by all the skyscrapers of downtown.  When researching the top “must do” things to do in Bangkok, this was in the top 3!  And I can understand why now that I have been there.  It’s amazing!  We spent a good afternoon here and enjoyed every second.

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The Dragons of Thailand

This little guy (he was HUGE) came out to greet us while we were in the park.  There are hundreds of them throughout Lumphini Park but they really stay to themselves and didn’t bother anyone.  They are alarming and dreadful in appearance, but Husband was deeply fascinated so we stood around and watched them roam freely.  Eeeek!  Click the link above to read more about these little creepers.

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On another note, our hotel was located right next to the U.S. Embassy so every time we left I would see this amazing street art that was done in collaboration with the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the Two Nations. One Friendship. 180 Years. campaign. Pretty neat!

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Greetings from Bangkok :: Part 1

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Sawatdee! (“Greetings” in thai.)  And of course if that was written in thai, you wouldn’t be able to read it because their script is 100% different from English.  But if you were to spell out the way it sounds in person, “sawatdee” is what it would look like!  :)  We have been having such a great time.  Our days in Bangkok are coming to an end and I feel like we have done more in 3 days than I thought humanly possible, but here is a little snippet of the things we saw and did on our first day in Thailand.

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Marble Temple (Wat Benchamabophit)

The pictures above were taken at the Marble Temple which I was really looking forward to seeing.  Being that is made of entirely carrara  marble, you can clearly see how beautiful it was.  Husband thinks the orange roof was built in honor of the gators…

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We took a river boat taxi which stopped at most of the touristy spots such as the temples and the Grand Palace.  This was a great way to see some of the sights and was a really inexpensive way to get around.  It was only about $2 per person for a one way ticket.  As you can see in the picture above, a lot of locals use this as a quick way to get around town as well.

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^^ Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun) ^^

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The Grand Palace was well…. majestic!  It honestly looked like something out of a disney movie.  Everything was dripping in gold which is a common theme here in Thailand.  The opulence of everything is definitely undeniable.  To visit any temples here in Bangkok (or anywhere probably) they request that everyone cover their shoulders and wear long pants or cover your legs.  So no tank tops and shorts is the bottom line.  For every temple we went to I would wear a scarf over my shoulders.  Well, at the grand palace that was not good enough… they had guards at the entrance with megaphones calling people out to turn around!  I got turned away 2 times!  I had to walk across the street into some creepy tourist shop and purchase a six dollar white (and sheer, which sheer is not allowed either!!) tunic looking thing with elephants on it, put it over my dress, and then they would allow me in.  Talk about a trap!  Anyway, you can see the lovely tunic in all of my pics around the palace…

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Oh!  And another thing, you have to take your shoes off before walking into a temple.  I find this to be a little unsanitary but you HAVE to… The inside of some of these temples were breathtaking.  They go to such lengths to make them so grand!

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The Lounging Buddha (Wat Pho)

This temple was probably my favorite.  The massive size of the lounging Buddha is a sight to be seen in itself.

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My favorite photo of the day!  Someone asked me why I wasn’t tired the first day in Bangkok on Instagram the other day and I did think about this before we left for our trip.  When Husband & I arrived on Friday night at 7 PM, we were exhausted.  We didn’t sleep a whole lot on the planes over, so after dinner we went right to sleep and slept for about 8 hours.  When we got up on Saturday we were so excited to start our exploration, there wasn’t even a thought about being tired.  Towards the evening Husband started feeling a little sleepy, but he was a trooper and we made it to our 8:30 reservation at this great spot called Vertigo.  Its a rooftop, open-air bar and grill with 360 degree views of the city.  Absolutely amazing!  I wouldn’t go for the food but for the atmosphere and views! Wow! Oh, and did I mention it’s 62 stories high?!?

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Woke Up in Bangkok

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24 hours of travel time and here we are half way across the world! So exciting!  Husband & I decided a couple of months ago that we wanted to take a trip somewhere we both had never been before and the first country that popped into my head was Thailand. I had heard so many wonderful things and seen some really incredible pictures, it was a no brainer that this would be our next destination!  We cannot wait to start exploring and I will update here periodically over the next ten days.  Hope everyone has a nice weekend!