Friday, September 9, 2016

Now it's quiet time!

Since our last guest left on Sept 3rd, we have just spent time on the house, together and have mostly done nothing....and it felt great! It was wonderful showing our extended family and friends the Yucatan.In July we started out with Mette and family from Denmark...than close behind them came Mike from Denmark. Mette was the first girl exchange student we hosted and she has a special place in our hearts. She was only 15 when she spent her year with us. We have visited her in Denmark several times in the past years. 
Mette and family

Cenote in the mangroves of Celestun

Mette and Carlos dancing to "Careless Whisper" .

Just before Mette and family left, Mike arrived. He was our third student, but just a half year as he was moved from a bad situation in Kansas City. He also did his college internship for Carlos later on. So we've been close to Mike for years.

Carlos and Mike enjoying the pool
Several days later our German student Andre arrived with his family. He overlapped with Mike as when Mike came to intern with Carlos, Andre was our student......Full HOUSE! And let me tell you I've forgotten what it was like with so many teens!
Andre and Eva

All (but me)

We embarrassed the kids by dancing to the music in Santiago park!
And finally came Anne-Marie, back to finish her dental work. Not quite a vacation, but needed and way, way less money than the states!
Now Carlos is preparing to head for the states for three weeks, I'll keep the home fires burning here and we have no guests except perhaps in December. But the snowbird season is gearing up and friends that head North to US and Canada will be returning and the Merida season will be starting. Si it's time to sit back and get some of the projects planned done and out of the way!

Friday, July 8, 2016

We debated about this, ad nauseam

We debated and debated and posted on this blog as well as ask for opinions about if we should build the casita in the back of our property. The answers were mostly, "we've been here for 5 (or 7 or 9) years and we've never had anyone visit and stay with us yet". But the answer that swayed us the most was, "build if for yourselves...not for guests" and we did just that. Of course we than changed the design to one large room and one bathroom, thinking that as we aged we would move down so we didn't have to climb stairs. Our bedroom is still upstairs and this year is going to be our years of guests! And that makes me pretty happy!
In January and February, we had friends come from Sweden...though they are Hungarians and some from California. It was great and we were able to do some touring about with them as well as to just hang out.

Than in March we had Pavlina and Steve as well as their two kids come from the Czech Republic and stay with us. It was such a treat to meet their kids....Pavlina was one of our exchange student back in the mid 1990's were she lived with us for a year and attended the local high school. We had a great time and was able to spend several days touring.

And now I am in the planning mode as the next two months will be chock full of guests and more touring around! Two different past students from Denmark as well as their families, My German student and his wife and three of his four kids, a friend from California and now still in the panning stages, two friends from Florida (Sept) 
I've got a big smile on my face just thinking of my visitors and I hope they all fall in love with the Yucatan as we have!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

I'm back in Merida and it's almost like I never left!

 After 17 fabulous days with the grand kids as well as my sis-in-law and her two, I traveled back to Merida via Cancun and than the 4 hour bus ride. I left the house in St Louis at 4:30 am and arrived in Merida at 8:30 pm....yes, it is a trek....yes, I could fly directly into Merida via American or United. However, the cost is twice as much and since I'm retired I'm not in much of a hurry! Much of that time was waiting...2 hours (TSA requirement) in St Louis, 3 hours connection in Chicago, 3 hours waiting for the direct bus to Merida  at Cancun airport. Once I was on the super comfortable ADO bus, I was able to lean back and snooze!
Carlos sent me photos while I was gone so that I could see that he was keeping up with the yard work that I usually do (not):

and that my cactus bloomed for the first time:

as well as showing me how great a job Lupita, our cleaning person was continuing to do:

and last but not least all of my cats had survived his care!

And I jumped right into being back. I was excited that the rainy season had begun. Merida looked cleaned and fresh!

Baseball was still happening and my favorite player from Jacksonville, Florida, Corey W was back!

My first morning back we headed out to our FAVORITE taco place for breakfast! (yes tacos are a breakfast food here):

and I have almost finished dealing with the home repairs/updates with items from my bulging suitcases I muled down! Like the new pendant lights that just screw into can fixtures ...who knew! Love how the kitchen looks now.

and the best of all...the cats have let bygones be bygones and are over their snit!

Now we are preparing for an influx of visitors most coming from Europe to stay with us...I'm always excited to share our Yucatan!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Time passes so swiftly...

I just returned from spending a month in the US... First I went to upstate NY, north of Albany where I grew up. I hadn't been in about 6 years and wanted to see some family and friends. An added bonus was that the weather was just fabulous. When I left Merida it was about 104F...arriving in the evening in NY the weather was in the 50'sF. Glorious! For the next 11 days the weather continued to be warm in the afternoons and cool at night. I stayed with my sister Vel...the one I had meet in March on Cozumel and we adventured through the mountains and of course the shops. We spent one of our days at Fort Ticonderoga which is situated on Lake Champlain south of Plattsburgh. It was so beautiful and interesting. The last time I was there was more than 50 years ago!
At the fort

Lake Champlain

Poppies at the fort

I also managed to eat my through just about every food I had missed while living in the Midwest and iving now in Mexico...Ted's Fish Fry, Joe's Hot Dogs, Pastrami on Rye, my cousins Clayton BBQ (he now caters), and the best McIntosh apples!

Pastrami on Rye with Saratoga Chips

Clayton's BBQ ..not much leftover 

Love those Macs!
My eleven days here included meeting up with a cousin, (and babysitting her beautiful new granddaughter), spending time with two other sisters, chance meeting a facebook friend that I hadn't seen since I was a child and visiting my dads grave in Saratoga National Cemetery. Days were full and next visit has to be longer as I didn't get time to visit other friends as well as paces! Now it was off to St Louis for the rest of the month.
Buttermilk Falls close to were I grew up

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Coming into the heat!

Our guests treated us to some wonderful goulosh!
Well, I've been's been the cold season and I not only had two sets of visitors (Sweden..but Hungarian and San Jose, CA) but have spent lots of time just doing...daily things! And I am still 'doing'.
I've loved showing the Merida area to guests. Both sets of visitors took advantage of the great dental care and had some work done...think teeth cleaning as well as dental in-plants. One also went to our dermatologist. We went to Progreso and ate fish, we visited my favorite Maya ruin of Mayapan and just spent some quality time sipping drinks around the pool as well as at our local cantina!

Than I got a message from my favorite sis that she would be taking a cruise with a friend and they would stop in Cozumel! Haven't seen her in a couple of years and it didn't take much persuasion to get Carlos to agree on meeting her there for the day! We took the bus over to Playa del Carmen using our discount INAPAN cards (like aarp) than the ferry to Cozumel. We stayed at hotel Casa Mexico right across the street from where the cruise ship docked. A great time was had by all! 
Me, Connie and my sis!

Me and my sis!

Now Carlos is in the states for a three week visit to see family as well as to do our taxes and a bit of shopping and I am here in Merida holding down the to speak! 
Our next set of visitors will arrive from Czech Republic in several weeks, followed by our Danish friends in July and our German friends in August. BTW, these have all been exchange students we hosted back when our son was young! (We hosted 14 different kids and have remained in touch with all) Now they are all grown up and have families of their own!
We have been busy doing other things too... Again we proctored the Artist Studio tour and was assigned to the same great artist, Paul Lorenz..

We've gone on cantina crawls, attended art gallery openings, installed a new master bathroom sink we had made for us, played with new software and just lived here in the wonderful city of Merida!
Another fun cantina crawl with our Canadian friends!

copper sink

New app called Dreamscope, had fun making my cat into art!