Posted in Travel

Orlando and St. Augustine, FL {Travel Diary}

This trip was the best vacation! I had such a fun time and though we were busy most of the time it was a refreshing break from life. I was in Florida from May 26th- June 6th.

I wanted to first clarify a few things before I take you on this journey. Our best friends live in Florida and we used to home school with them. Their oldest son was graduating so we came down for that and we stayed and went on a vacation with them.

DISCLAIMER: I’m not trying to brag about this trip or anything like that. I am so thankful I had this opportunity with my family.

Now I can tell you about my trip!

Day 1 (Friday)

 

Bright and early at 4am we started our 14 hour journey to Florida. It ended up taking us 14 hours the first day. We stopped in Savannah and coincidentally stayed at the same hotel as we did last time we went to Florida again.

We also stopped at South of the Border which if you are going to Florida you must stop there! It is pretty cheesy but the pictures are worth it.

Day 2 (Saturday)

After a delicious continental breakfast we jumped back on the road. We finally made it to our resort (Tropical Palms) at four or five. It was such a nice place and I loved staying there. Our friends own an RV so we all stayed at an RV park, though we stayed in a cottage. Here’s what our cottage looked like.

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We unloaded that evening and then we went and saw everyone who was there for the graduation. Many of their family and friends had come to Orlando for Josh’s (the guy graduating) graduation. I loved getting to see some of their extended family again and meeting some other people who had a big part in their lives. That evening we played a game about who knew Josh the best and had a pre-party for him.

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We also went for a walk that evening and saw an alligator!!

Day 3 (Sunday)

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Sunday we went to Josh’s graduation ceremony and then to his party. The ceremony was a home school convention held at the Gay Lord hotel. The ceremony was held the day before Memorial day and the man speaking was fought in the Vietnam war. He was such an amazing speaker!

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Later that day, we went to the graduation party. We ate plenty of India food, danced, and listened to Josh, his brothers, and cousins sing and play different instruments. It was a great time and I’ve never danced so much 🙂

Day 4 (Monday)

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This day we had the opportunity to meet a woman who my mom lived with while she was teaching in the intercity. We also were able to meet the man (and his family) that introduced my parents to each other! It was a privilege to meet people so influential in my parent’s lives. Plus, we went swimming! I played water football which was different for someone who isn’t a big sport person.

Day 5 (Tuesday)

Tuesday we ended up doing my favorite activity of the week and I conquered one of my fears! We went to Aquatica (Sea World’s water park). This was definitely my families favorite place we went! They had so many fun and refreshing water slides.

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^^Breakaway Falls

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I’m not a roller coaster person but I love water slides. There was one that I was terrified of doing. It is called Breakaway falls. You are in a capsule and the floor drops out from under you and you shoot down into a waterside. After a bit of peer pressure, I decided to do it and I ended up going first out of our whole group.

I’m so glad I did it though I would not do it again. I was so surprised as I began dropping the I flung my arms back instead of crossing them over my chest, therefor inhaling a ton of water. All in all it was a great experience though.

I think our favorite all around things were Whala Wave ( a family ride with twists turns and drops) and Rao Rapids (you float around in some fast rapids). I would recommend this completely if you are ever in Florida!

Day 6 (Weechi-Watchee)

weechi-watchee

So many of our friends went to Weechi-Watchee and said it was their favorite part of their vacation. Plus it was a state park so the tickets were inexpensive ($13 for adults/teens and $8 for kids).

It was a natural spring (like where bottled water comes from) and they had shows, a riverboat ride, water slides, and swimming area. It was a really different activity than where we would normally go but it was so cool. It was even worth the two-hour drives (both ways)!

Day 7 (Thursday)

On Thursday we went to the Holy Land. When we entered the park, it looked like we had stepped back in time. We went around and saw different performances and toured replicated buildings. We also went to a place called the scriptorium where we learned all about how the Bible was created and evolved. At the end of our time, Ms. Zuli (Josh’s mom) bought us each cross necklaces from the trip. I wear mine all the time.

We got back from the Holy Land and decided to go night swimming. It was a ton of fun and the RV park had a nice pool. I did realize I was really out of swim shape when we were racing in the pool!

Day 8 (Friday)

Friday we just hung out around the RV park. We swam more, did laundry, packed up, and then all ate dinner together.

Day 9 (Saturday)

bryn mawr

^^Bryn Mawr Ocean Resort, where we stayed for the last part of our trip

Saturday morning we went to the waffle house and met Jon T and Jeff (people our friends had met earlier in the week). They had great customer service. We then hopped in the car and drove two hours to St. Augustine.

In the afternoon, we met Josh’s aunt and 2nd cousins. We had dinner with them.

Day 10 (Sunday)

early morning

^^Look at how tired we were 🙂

Sunday morning at about 6 am we got up to watch the sunrise on the beach. It was so pretty and I got some cute pictures as well.

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Sunday we had our own church in the morning and then we spent all day at the beach. I took some pictures and was in the water most of the time. I ended up taking a nap on the beach too.

Day 11 (Monday)

running

Monday was our last full day in Florida. We played some four square in the morning but we tried to get to the beach ASAP.

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^^Here we are digging a really deep hole

It started to rain (extremely hard, it hurt) but we stayed out in the waves. I went out pretty far that day. I even went to a sand bar!

story time

^^Listening to Danny tell a story

That evening, we all watched the Princess Bride. I forgot what a great movie that is!

Day 12 (Tuesday)

It was really hard to leave Tuesday and I will admit I cried a little. Before we left, we watched the sunrise and said goodbye to everyone. We drove straight through and arrived home that night at 10 PM.

I had such an awesome time on this trip and it was really refreshing. I am so thankful for the  opportunity to go on this vacation and I know I will remember the trip for the rest of my life.

I want to shout out my mom for taking the majority of these pictures! Otherwise you would only have about 1/4 of the pictures I posted.

Thank you for reading this post! Have you ever been to any of the places I went to? What was your best vacation?

Have a magnificent day!

-Rebekah

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Posted in About Me, Travel

Pack With Me: Florida

I may or may not have started writing this back in March…..

Anyway, I love packing. I enjoy writing packing lists and putting together what I’m going to wear for a trip. I love figuring out ways to be a lighter packer and bring just the right amount of stuff.

I know…..It’s strange. Back in February I started planning for my trip to Florida this summer. Now it is so close!

We are driving so I don’t have a certain weight but I am still trying to not over pack. We will be in Florida for 13 days and will do laundry once so I need enough clothes to last 6 days. Anyway, enjoy!

I want to start this post by sharing a few of my favorite posts that I read about packing and also printables I’ve found (they helped me so much!).

The Ultimate Packing List for Florida

Useful Packing Printables for Packing (you will need to subscribe to access them)

Road Trip Essentials

Before anything else, I wrote a packing list. Then, I gathered everything and put it on my bed. I tried to pick things that mix and match together. I brought pieces that could make multiple outfits, be comfortable, and look nice for pictures. I ended up with eight tops, but two of them are cover-ups and one is to exercise in as well. I recommend minimal bottoms because they can be re worn and should match every or almost every top.

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*This is almost everything I brought!*

Once I had everything together, I packed the bag I am bringing in the car. In here I have things to do and essentials. I am bringing my backpack because it is big enough for everything I need but also old so it is ok if it gets dirty.

I am bringing one book (but it is a three in one!) called Kissed. It is by Cameron Dokey and I really liked the other in the series. I’m also bringing my journal, a notebook I write blog stuff in, a coloring book, pens and markers, my wallet, camera, phone, and some toiletries.

I’ll also put together a snack bag before I go and fill up my reusable water bottle.

After that comes my suitcase. I brought this one from LL Bean:

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When I packed everything it I started by putting everything from the bed and placing it on separate sides of the suitcase.

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I opened the bottom part of my bag and put the plastic bags and swim suits in between the bottom of the suitcase.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES On top of that I put my Ziploc bag full of bottoms, my cardigan, and my purse. I like to use Ziploc bags because they can compress things and decrease wrinkling. I definitely recommend them if you aren’t going to use packing cubes. I only needed two. One for shirts and a second big one (2.5 gallon to be specific) pants and my overalls. The only thing that didn’t fit in was my black cardigan for over my dress.

I did the same thing on the other side as well.

In the front two pockets I put my toiletries bag, chargers bag, hairbrush, and outfit planner.


I didn’t have that much to pack because my mom packed some stuff for all of us (like shampoo) and she packed our shoes in a separate bag.

 

I’m not sure if I’ll have access to wi-fi in Florida so hopefully my posts will go up without problems and I’ll reply to comments when I return. Also, I will be posting a travel diary so look forward to that!

If you are interested in a full PDF of what I packed for Florida you can click Packing List for Florida 2017. I’m also thinking about posting how I packed for my mission’s trip because I could not find any blog posts about that when I was looking it up online. Packing for a mission’s trip is so different and I’ve learned so much after being on one. So, if you would be interested in seeing that leave me a comment!

What is something that you like to do that is not ordinary (mine are organizing and packing 😛 )?

Have a blessed day!

-Rebekah

Posted in Travel, Tutorial

How to Survive Long Car Rides (yes, it’s possible)

Hi there!! Since Summer is almost upon us, I know that means vacation season is upon us as well. My family almost always travels by car (I’ve even traveled as many as twenty hours in the car at one time!).

I wanted to share some of the ways I survive long car rides. Honestly, I am pretty content in the car and don’t mind long car rides so I don’t get bored very easily, but I still need ways to spend my time. Here some of my tips:

#1

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Car Games. Car games can make or break a trip. It gives you a chance to bond with people on the trip and also is an entertaining way to pass time.

In my family, our favorites are hangman, card games (Uno, Spot it!, Bingo) and never have I ever.

I also found this post on fun car games. I can’t wait to try some of these with my family!!

#2

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Prep your devices. If you have access services like Amazon Prime, Netflix, Podcasts, a Kindle, your local library, or Spotify (I’m sure there are others), you can download movies, books, music and podcasts to use without internet connection. Some of these cost money but others are free. They save tons of space and data. This is a great and easy way to get entertainment for the road.

#3

Snacks. Food makes everything better!! I like to bring snacks that I don’t get as often. I also like things that are refreshing. Things like fruits and nuts are perfect because they will fill you up but won’t make you feel over-full inside. Dried fruit or fruit squeezes are good alternative if you can’t take fresh, perishable fruit along. Granola bars are compact, easy to bring, and tasty but can feel heavy on your stomach.

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I don’t recommend bringing spicy foods, like Takis, unless you are accustomed to fire in your throat. You’ll guzzle down a ton of water (that’s the reason my family one time had to make two bathroom stops on a two and half hour-long car ride, when we could otherwise go without any). In addition, salty foods will make you dehydrated faster so beware of them.

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Drinking water will help keep you from headaches and dehydration during a road trip but drink strategically to avoid unnecessary stops. To save space you can pack a reusable water bottle and fill it up at rest stops.

#4

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Be comfy. Wear something that you’ll be comfortable in. Layers are your best friend because depending on how you are feeling you can take something off or put something on. Nothing will make the ride more uncomfortable the tight jeans and a thick sweater in sweltering heat (or tight jeans at any time!).

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Keep lotion, chap stick, hand sanitizer, and diaper wipes nearby during the trip so you don’t feel disgusting in the car.

#5

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Prep for sleep. If worst comes to worst and you are bored out of your mind, sleep is your best option. It is not impossible to obtain. The biggest thing is comfort, make sure you are wearing comfy clothes (mentioned in #4) and you have a pillow and/or blanket to keep you cozy. If light bothers you wear a sleeping mask. If you can’t stand the noise put in some ear plugs (seriously, these things are AMAZING). Figure out what helps you sleep so catching some zzzs is easier on the road.

#6

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Look out the window. Watch the countryside (or interstate) fly by. I like to do this because it is so relaxing and I find it all around interesting. I’ve heard it helps with car sickness as well.

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I honestly loved writing this. I hope you enjoyed reading it and found it helpful :D. Let me know your tips for surviving long car rides down in the comments.

What is the longest car ride you’ve been on?

Have an awesome week!

-Rebekah

Posted in Faith, Travel

Preparing for a Mission’s Trip

Last year I posted twice about the mission’s trip I went on read them here and here. I thought for some of you considering on going on a mission’s trip you might want to know the process involved. Obviously, it is different with every church or organization. I am also going on a domestic missions trip (not out of the country) so that does simplify some things.

For starters, you usually have to complete a form to apply.  It gives you information and you also fill out information. This includes basic stuff like your name and age but also other stuff like your work preferences, lists of people who will pray/keep you accountable, and questions about your testimony and other spiritual related questions.

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After you apply, you begin raising support and attending meetings. Since we are all under 18, we raise money by sending letters to people we know and people in the church asking for them to donate money. We send an original letter, thank you letter, field letter, and a letter when we return home.

At our meetings we build team unity, learn how to share the gospel, and meet specifically with our individual group (we are hosting a Vacation Bible School). Aside from keeping up on the letters, we must prepare for our team. I am on teaching team which means I will be teaching the kids a Bible lesson one of the days.

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For that I’m writing my lesson, coming up with activities to do, and practicing teaching it. If you want to read my lesson you can click here –>VBS Lesson. It is about when Jesus confronts Peter after he has denied Jesus three times.

prayer list maine

Prayer is a big part of the trip. I pray almost daily for the trip, the kids we will reach, my team, and other related things.

Also, you have to pack. You don’t have to do that till the end but it is still a part of the process.

Whew, I think that is all the prep I go through when I get ready for a missions trip. I hope you learned something. If you are considering going a mission’s trip don’t let this scare you! It does take a little prep but the results are priceless.

Have you ever been on a missions trip?

Have a lovely day!

-Rebekah