My husband and I have a lot to be thankful for and since tomorrow is Thanksgiving I thought now would be a great time to share what all we have to be thankful for. A lot has happened in our family this year and around the world and we give thanks that God has seen Ryan safely through his second deployment and has blessed our lives in many ways.
During Ryan's six month deployment I dealt with a flat tire, broken AC, a wasp infestation in my front yard and subsequent adverse reaction to a wasp sting, and Hurricane Irma right before he arrived home. To say I was ready for a vacation was an understatement. So we planned our post deployment vacation to Tamarindo, Costa Rica to celebrate Ryan's homecoming and also his 30th birthday. He wanted a surf trip so I let him choose the destination and I booked our hotel and made vacation plans.
This vacation was definitely different from others in the past. During other vacations I would book excursions for every other day and make sure that we would see all the town and surrounding areas had to offer for tourists. The town of Tamarindo, Costa Rica, is not that big and definitely quieter (if you exclude the constant construction that was going on at the resort) during the off season. Our resort, Hotel Tamarindo Diria, was right on the beach with a pool overlooking the ocean. So I booked excursions for only two days during the week that we were there and the rest of the time we just relaxed. Literally. I would lay by the pool and read while Ryan would surf the majority of the day. We woke up very early and were in bed by 8pm at night.
It was definitely a trip of Rest and Relaxation and honestly it was very nice. It was nice to slow down and just let the day unfold as we went along. And the two excursions we booked were amazing as well! I booked both of our excursions with Don, our tour guide through Get Lost in Costa Rica. And he was an excellent guide, full of great information for our stay. He took us to a camp near the Rincon de la Vieja Volcano. It was a full day of zip lining, rock climbing and rappelling, white water rafting, lunch, mud baths, and hot springs. The scenery was beautiful as we zip lined over the gorge that we also white water rafted on later! The mud bath and hot springs was interesting. I didn't realize the mud from the hot springs smelled due to the sulfur from the volcano. The smell was definitely different but we had a great time baking in the sun and then cleaning off in the hot springs.
Our next excursion was a sunset catamaran cruise with an open bar! Our group we went with was so much fun and when we arrived a private beach Ryan snorkeled (something I will never be good at) and found a puffer fish while I paddle boarded around. After a quick late lunch we made our way back to port and watched the sun set over the water.
The sunsets in Costa Rica were amazing! Our room overlooked Tamarindo beach and we would enjoy happy hour during sunset before heading out to a local restaurant for dinner. The food was all amazing a fresh. No processed or preservatives in the food. Ryan had a whole Red Snapper and it was delicious! The weather was great the entire trip even though we were there during the rainy season! We would always see rain clouds around us but it only showered a few times we were there and we just waited it out at our hotel's bar before heading out to dinner.
Ryan was sad to be leaving Costa Rica and I was sad I could no longer work on my tan (it has definitely faded by this blog post lol) but we are both appreciative of the time we had together in Costa Rica. Now as most of our family has arrived in time for the Thanksgiving holiday and we are constantly busy with our jobs and preparing for the holidays it is good to reminisce on those memories and to know that it is okay to slow down and enjoy life. In this day and age it is a rat race and everyone thinks they have to be constantly moving. But it's also good to relax and slow down. Everything will be okay and will work itself out in the end. We are blessed to live in this country. So many others have it worst than we do. So we give thanks to the life we have lived to this point and continue to trust that God has a plan for us and that he is leading us in the direction we need to go for our future.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone from the Johnson family!