Thursday, May 15, 2014

Our Little Getaway - Jamaica

You may remember this post about Mat and I planning a trip to Jamaica. A couple of weeks, we finally made our trip and the whole left me speechless.

Mat and I didn't really care where we ended up, we just knew we wanted to go somewhere. After 3 deployments completed in 3 years and another one only a year away, plus our 7 year anniversary (the itch!) coming up later this year, we knew that we need to take some time away, just us, and make sure that we hadn't lost that loving feeling.

Know what I mean?

I spent weeks researching and finding the perfect resort. This trip wasn't about where we went or what we did, we didn't really care to leave the comforts of our resort, we just wanted to get away.

I finally came across Sunset at the Palms and I knew it was perfect, he knew it was perfect, and we booked it.

The night before, we headed to San Antonio to stay with one of my longtime friends. We had an early flight (hello 7:25am!) and I was not looking forward to waking up early. I made sure we stayed as close to the airport as we could get! haha

Good morning, San Antonio!
Our itinerary took us to Atlanta and then Montego Bay.

I am obsessed with cloud and wing photos... In case you were wondering.
 After arriving in Montego Bay, we had a seriously annoying long line to get through passport control and customs. After almost an hour, we finally made it through, only to find out that Mat had to have a special health stamp since he had just gotten back from Afghanistan.

 Our first views of Jamaica were filled with, "Oh my God!"s and "Holy sh!t"s. The views were stunning.

After getting through both and then picking up our luggage, we were greeted by our transportation company that would be taking us to our resort.

This was our first view of Jamaica outside the airport.

We got pretty lucky, a friend of mine works at our cell phone company and he hooked us up with unlimited texting and data while we were in Jamaica. I found quite the humor in the trip. Text messages during our hour and a half trip went something like:

"Just FYI... They drive on the opposite side of the road in Jamaica. Try to refrain from calling your driver an idiot."

"So far I have seen a store called "All The Tings" and a bar whose tagline is "Come in here and get drunk."

To say that my first taste of Jamaica was anything but less than humorous would be incorrect.

The trip to our resort wasn't exactly pretty. There was a ton of litter and the towns leave a lot to be desired.

Until you get to the resort areas.

We arrived at our resort and we were immediately greeted with cold towels (that smelled amazing!), tasty juice, and the friendliest staff ever.

They really go out of your way to wait on you.

Right before we had left, I had sent the resort a message to request a king bed. They had sent a message back and asked if we were celebrating anything and I had told them that we were celebrating the end of deployment #5 as well as what we were considering a late honeymoon. They remembered this and had champagne in our room.

Between this, and just how beautiful the resort was, Mat and I had already decided that we would have to come back. We hadn't even been there half an hour.

1. Our room 2. The view from our front deck 3. The hammock on our deck 4. My day bed (where I spent a lot of time) 5. The little table on our front deck.
1. The daily activity board. You came here every morning to find out what excursions and classes were planned for that day as well as the theme for dinner. 2. Our cute little room key.
The cute little kittens were my morning entertainment
1. The view walking to our room (that's our treehouse straight ahead) 2. The view from the hammock of the mountains 3. The view of the resort gardens 4. Same as 3. I spent my morning watching the workers pick the fresh veggies for the meals for the day 5. Mat's hammock. That's where he spent a lot of time.
The resort was lush with flours and plants. I wish I had taken photos of all of the different ones but it would have filled an entire memory card. This place was gorgeous.
The pool and pool bar area. A lot of people wondered why I didn't have many photos. I just simply answered that I didn't want to bore people with hundreds of photos of my legs. We literally lounged and relaxed the whole time we were there.
The beach. I told you. We lounged.
My handsome breakfast buddy our first morning in Jamaica

Believe it or not, Mat and I actually did a few things. Xtabi is a cliffside resort not far from where we were staying. The plans were to snorkel and they had some you could rent, but we didn't realize it was cash only. We enjoyed the view and explored the caves.

Even though we didn't get to snorkel, the views made up for it.

He did get tired of me taking random photos of him but he loves me.
The resort offered free non motorized sport activities. The first one we tried were the paddle boats.

We couldn't get over how pretty the water was and how clear. The water was super deep, yet, we could still see the bottom.

Another picture of the man. You can tell that he is thrilled!

After a morning of paddle boating, we took the cooking class. We learned to make smoked salmon... Not that we eat smoked salmon, but the show was entertaining and the company was great!

Have I mentioned that the water is crystal blue and the beaches are sandy? And that it doesn't get much better than this?

The one thing that Mat just had to do was windsail. I was a little iffy because he had never sailed before. I kept telling him no (lessons were $20), but he finally convinced me that it can't be hard and he would wing it.

Yea. Wing it.

I'm glad that we did it, I'm glad that we made it back to shore in one piece and didn't have to have the rescue boat come tow us back to shore.

My super happy captain. Probably the happiest he was the whole trip.

I wasn't so sure...

 How we spent our last day in Jamaica... Me on the daybed and Mat in the hammock.

On our last night, we made reservations at the Chef's Table. I was entirely fond of the food, it's not stuff I am used to, but it was nice to get dressed up and experience it.

The appetizer was a smoked salmon stuffed with prosciutto and smoked cho cho. I don't normally eat salmon, but I did try it and it was really good. The soup was an Italian potato and cream corn soup. We had a salad with a fruity vingearette dressing, chicken and shrimp for dinner and a passion fruit souffle for dessert.

The soup and the chicken were my favorite part!

The next morning, we had to leave. Again. Bright and early.


 Atlanta at night.

We got into San Antonio at 1030pm even though our day had started at 750am. We went back to my friends house and woke up the next morning to pick up our littles from my parents. 

I know we missed them, but I think they were pretty happy to see us.

Don't let the boy fool you, he's in one of those phases where he hates photos!

So. That was our trip. We are definitely planning on finding a way to go back in the next few years. I would like to go back next year but I suppose we should do a family trip then... Le sigh!


  1. The trip looks amazing. You don't have to do it as a family trip. I have a friend (another army spouse) where her & her husband go some place tropical just the 2 of them every year (provided he's not deployed). His Mom comes up and takes care of the kids so they can do their get away. This year they are heading to Mexico again.

    1. I've already promised the older two that they get a big vacation next year. My 13 year old daughter was less than pleased to hear that she would not be going to Jamaica this year lol I think we will take turns, family vacation one year, adult only vacation the next. Of course, it does depend on if he's deployed or not, but he should be back in time from his next deployment for our adult only trip!