Saturday, October 1, 2011


As a graduation present Dan's parents helped us afford a vacation to Cancun. It was extremely spur of the moment but it was a lot of fun. This was my first time leaving the country and it was an adventure. The only misstep that we had was that our luggage didn't make it. We had to make some adjustments but luckily it didn't affect our plans too much. We only had 4 days so we jam packed everything that we wanted to get done in those 4 days. Here is the view from our hotel.

The first day that we were there we went to go see some Mayan ruins. This was the top thing that I wanted to do so I was grateful that we were able make it happen. The hotel that we were staying at was giving a tour so we were able to go with a guide which was very helpful. He was Mayan and he was able to give us a lot of insight into the culture. The city that we went to was called Tulum. It was one of the only coastal Mayan cities to be built. It was a port city so it didn't have the same huge temples that the religious cities would have had. Luckily it was filled with lots of other incredible structures. Here are the highlights:

This is a palace where someone important in the community would have lived.

This a small temple that was dedicated to worshiping women. There were people there researching and excavating this building.

This is the main temple in Tulum. I still think it is pretty impressive.

The next day we took a ferry to Isla Mujeras. We rented scooters to get around the island and then had a snorkeling adventure.

I just couldn't believe how blue the water was, it was just incredible!

This was my first time snorkeling and I was pretty excited. We were the only ones at this location so we got to enjoy ourselves without a crowd.

There were so many fish! I will admit at first it was a little overwhelming but once I discovered that they would move once I started swimming it got a lot better.

This was an unknown creature when I discovered it. I thought it was going to come out and eat me! We took a picture of it and showed it to a local. They informed us that it was a lobster. They wanted to know its exact location so that they could go back and catch it for dinner.

The next day was dedicated to the adventure that Dan wanted to have the most while we were there. We went to Playa del Carmen (a city with a beautiful beach). Dan had researched these things called cenotes. They are basically sink holes (huge caves filled with water). You take your snorkeling gear and you get to explore the caves both above you and under the water. There were lots of bats in the caves as well but they avoided us for the most part. The water was a little cold but again we were the only ones there so we got the caves all to ourselves.

This is the entrance into the caves to where the water is.

These are the stalactites that were lining the entire roof of the caves.

These are the stalactites under the water.

While we were there we also found time to relax on the beach, eat some great food, release baby turtles in the ocean, and enjoy the flee market.

Overall we had an absolutely awesome trip. We would have loved for it to have been a little longer but it was still very worth it. I can't wait for our next trip!

Johnson Family Reunion

At the end of July we had the opportunity to have the first ever Johnson Family Reunion. This was the first time that all of us had been able get together in quite some time. We had the reunion in Island Park, Idaho. It included all 8 kids, spouses, and 28 nieces and nephews. It was slightly chaotic to say the least but it was a lot of fun. Here are some of the highlights:

We started the reunion by going to the West Yellowstone Rodeo. It was more like a pretend rodeo and they didn't actually rope anything. Here is Devon all ready for the rodeo. What a stud.

The best part of the rodeo was when they invited all the kids out into the ring to chase a sheep (for the younger kids) and a baby cow (for the older kids). The first to grab the flag off of the animal's tail won a prize. Sadly to say none of our group actually pulled the flag but at the end they gave everyone a gold dollar for participating. The kids thought this was great.

One of Dan's many hobbies is photography. While in the beautiful outdoors he took advantage of the scenery and was able to take some great photographs of the kids. This particular one he is now turning into a drawing. (It is still a work in progress.)

One of the perks that we were able to enjoy at the ranch that we were staying at was horse rides. We were each able to get 2 rides in the beautiful countryside and let me tell you my sore bum couldn't have taken anymore!

Some of the other things that we did that we don't have pictures of include: The Johnson Family Cup, which included a series of mini games that every family had to come up with, lots of time in the hot tubs at the cabin, canoeing in the lake, lots of games, and a family golf tournament. We ended the reunion by going into Yellowstone. We saw animals, went on hikes, saw waterfalls, and played in the river. It was a great end to the reunion.

We were able to finish the reunion by getting a picture with all of us in it. Unfortunately it is already out of date because another baby has been added. It was great to see everyone and it will be a long 2 years until our next one!

Dan Graduates!

So this post is extremely overdue and Dan has been bothering me that I haven't posted about it so here it goes. Dan graduated! For those of you who hadn't heard Dan graduated with his Masters in Recreation from Texas State University. We are so proud of him. It is a great milestone in our lives. He is busy looking for a new job with his new credentials and we are ready to see where life takes us.

Here is Dan walking down the aisle at the beginning of the ceremony.

Here is Dan receiving his diploma.

Dan's parents were able to make it to Texas for the big day. They treated us to some yummy Pappadeaux's for dinner.