Our Family

Our Family

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Dan Am to St. Maarten

In January, we got to go on VACATION!!!!  Dan, Andrew's step dad, turned 60 this summer and we got to go to Philipsburg, St. Maarten.  Dan is a big sailor so we went to St. Maarten because they have retired America's Cup 12 meter boats and we got to sail them!  Before, we get to that though (we're going to have a guest blogger), we had several days before our sailing adventure that I want to tell you about. 

Andrew and I took Friday and Tuesday off (we had Monday off for MLK Day) so we had a whole 5 days off.  We had a full travel day on Friday, 3 full days to enjoy the paradise that was St. Maarten then another travel day on Tuesday.  We stayed at the beautiful Holland House.  It was perfect right on the beach, walking distance to the marina.
 Dan on the flight with his Dan-AM gear that Linds made.  She got the captain hat, aviators and treat bag.
Our first day there, we spent a leisurely morning looking for breakfast.  We ended up at McDonald's, I know we're ashamed too, but we were starving and couldn't find anything that looked safe to eat.  The rest of the day, we sat on the beach dodging spotty rain showers and enjoying the sun and surf.  This was the only day that we had rain.  We could see it coming in, it would rain for a couple of minutes as we hid under our beach umbrella, then it would clear up and be beautiful again.  Amidst the sun catching, the boys rented some jet skis and created a paddle ball game.  That night, we had some cocktails on our balcony that overlooked the ocean and took some pictures.  We had dinner at Greenhouse which was walking distance from our hotel near the marina.  It was a very relaxing day.

Here are some pictures from our first day.  We took a lot of family pictures so beware as you read on.  
 Our first day, Ange enjoying the view from our balcony.
Of course, we're in St. Maarten and we see an OSU bar.  We're the Hawkeye Bar?
  Craig and Reece getting ready for a ride.
Ange and Reece on the jet ski.
 A view from the beach.  Love this!
 Our view.

More of our View.
 A look at the hotel from our room, the patio with couches and umbrellas was awesome.
 Another view looking towards the marina.
 My beautiful sister-in-law, Lindsay, on the balcony.
 Patti & Linds
 Dye Family-Linds, Reece & Craig
 Ange & I
 Patti and her kids
 Patti & Dan in the sunset
 We were on the marina side of St. Maarten in Philipsburg, which is where all the cruise ships dock.  Here was one of many ships in the sunset.
 Reece at dinner-like father like son.  He ate the shit out of the Alaskan King Crab.
The next day, we wanted to do a little exploring.  While being on the bay side of the island, the ocean water was really calm.  And with a 15 year old boy in tow, he wanted to do some wave jumping.  So Andrew, Linds, Craig, Reece and I piled into our rented van with beer and sammies and headed for some bigger waves.  The island has a lot of mountains so we were up and down on curvy, narrow, windy roads.  We went east towards an area called Dawn Beach.  We followed the signs and Craig's driving intuition and found a parking lot that we thought was a public lot to get to Dawn Beach.  With our beer staying cold in a plastic hotel garbage can, we parked and took the 100 foot path to the beach.  We're thinking, yeah this is awesome, how did we get so lucky to find such great parking right by the beach?!?!  Well, as we got closer to the water and chairs, we realized we were on the private Westin Dawn Beach Resort & Spa.  We had parked in their parking lot for free!  So, we acted like we belonged there, laid our towels (which matched the resort towels) on the chairs and soaked up the sun and surf.  We ate our sandwiches, drank our Heinekens and swam and jumped in the waves.  
Look at those waves.  Reece was in heaven.
Loving the beach.
Father and Son.
Ange and Craigers.
The most exciting part of the day was when Craig and Reece went snorkling.  The waves were super big and really pulled them down.  As they were out there, Craig got his foot caught on some coral.  Boy, did his toe split.  He came back to our chairs gushing blood.  Lindsay searched for a band aid and found one that would cover up a paper cut.  It was not cut out to hold Craigs flap of skin on his big toe.  So, he wrapped it up with paper towels and secured it with plastic bag and went right back out into the waves.  He's hard core like that....we like to call him Clark Griswold.  Hooooolidayyyyyy Roooaaaad...... 
A view down one of the thin, windy roads.
That night, we had planned for a another family photo shoot on the beach.  With my nice DSLR Cannon camera, I had done some research and was ready to get some fun shots in the sunset.  We somewhat coordinated our outfits and got some good shots.  Check them out, I'm pretty proud of them....
 Back to Clark Griswold....
the first thing he does is pick up a couple of coconuts to be silly and what do you think happens?!?!  He gets coconut water all down the front of his shirt before we have taken ANY pictures.  You can see the water splashing him here if you look closely.
 Dan and Patti
 Replaying their wedding in Hawaii.
 Craig, Reece and Lindsay
 Looking good guys.
 Typical Dyes.
 Me and my honey.

 The family.
 My turn with the family.

 Sperry Shot.  We LOVE our Sperrys.  There will be a prize if you can guess which foot belongs to which person. :o)
 Craig's new business shot.  We'll just make sure to cut off the coconut water part of the picture below his left nipple.
 That night, Dan and Patti treated us to dinner at the beautiful restaurant at our hotel to celebrate Dan's 60th.
Here Ange and I are drinking our fruit smoothies we got before our entrees were served.
 Dan's Cake.  We bought the a cake at the market and I 
Pinterested the shit out of it.
 He loved the cake.
 Dan and Patti after dinner.
 The WHOLE family.

The next day was our sailing adventure.  I'm going to save that for Patti and Dan who will better be able to describe our incredible day.  

The last night there, we took the suggestion of friends we met while sailing, Carolyn and Jay, and went to a BBQ restaurant on the west side called Buccaneer.  It was a fun place.  We ate outside on the beach and exchanged the last of the gifts Lindsay made for the trip: Canada flags and Keep Calm and... magnets.
 Oh CanaDan....
 Guess who...

Overall, it was a great trip.  It's always fun when we get to see Linds and Craig, but to have the whole family there was just fabulous.  There may be another post or two about some other aspects of our trip, like the sailing adventure and sights, sounds and smells, but we'll wait to see what my guest bloggers come up with.  

It was great reliving our trip, I hope you enjoyed reading about it.  

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