Friday, October 9, 2009

Tom's Big # 30!

30 and looking GOOOOOD!

Kacee and I on the way to Marbella

Alvaro's beach front property complete with shower
(Kacee and ALvaro)

Playa Marbellas

Grillin with the homies

Hermana Pina is one bad A

I told Elle to "blend" :)

Tom's birthday is September 28th. This year, that happened to be the day that our passports needed to be renewed, and so we would be exiting the country to Nicaragua. We decided to celebrate the big numero 30 on the 26th. We started the day by heading out for a surf session at Play Marbella, with our friends Kacee and Alvaro. We took the back roads, and got the chance to put our KIA to the test. She didn't pull through for us like we had hoped. The river was pretty deep, and at one point the water rushed as deep as the engine. The good news; we didn't get stuck in the water, but we did get stuck coming out onto the muddy hill on the other side. Just as Alvaro was setting up the tow, so that his actual 4X4 could toe us out, a kind passerby helped us push the car out of the rut just enough that we were finally able to make it up the hill. It was such a picturesque moment...Little burgendy "intercooler" KIA, stuck somewhere she had no business being, saved by old, toothless, shirtless, happy, tico gentleman, who probably sees a scene like that all too often. Once we crossed the river, we passed by several people on bikes and scooters going the direction we had just come. I guess they just pick up their transportation and trudge across chest deep water, probably still more effective than our KIA.
The beach at Marbella was stunning! Black sand and clear skies. We said a prayer before getting in, thanks to Alvaro who is part of the Christian Surfriders Group, and started into the waves. Tom and Alvaro were out in no time, however Kacee and I had no such luck. The waves were the largest and most powerful ones I have been in to date, and after 20 minutes of attempting to get beyond the break, we gave up and laid out. Tom didn't have a very successful session himself, I guess there was a very unusual riptide, which made feel better about my own failed attempt. Alvaro happens to be a professional surfer, and so even the riptide didn't prevent him from cutting through the waves all day long. I really enjoyed spending some girl time with a gringa, and we chatted in English as we soaked up the sun. We topped off the afternoon with a outdoor shower on Alvaro's beach front property. Sooooooo tropical!
Next we headed to the grocery store for Tom's official b-day gift...$$$$ worth of food for the dinner party we planned. We were expecting about 30 mouthes to feed, and we picked up all the goods needed to get the job done. We grilled sausage, pork chops, fillets, and some other kind of beef, in addition to a rotisseri chicken, rice and beans, a 10 avocado quac dip, chips, a 12 tomato bowl of pico de gallo, pineapple, tortillas, all the taco toppings like cabbage, cilantro, lime, and onion, as well as, ranch and cilantro ranch, and a large veggie platter. The food was DEMOLISHED like I have never seen before :) It was awesome. We are grateful for our friends here in Costa, HAPPY B-DAY TOM :)

Sunday, October 4, 2009


The following pics are in no particular order, what a great 1o days!

Brody and Brooklyn have become really good friends, truly :)

Taking pics all the time down here, so they are getting great at posing!

Pool at our condo

Condo roof top overlooking Playa Tamarindo

Bob and Debbie took a day trip to Arenal Hot Springs...JEALOUS!

Enjoying the music of Costa :)

Weekly trip to the Mandarina juice bar.

It's a bird, it's a wait, it's Bob actually caught on camera smiling!
I think it was the goodness of a tropical Mandarina smoothie that induced this spontaneous smile:)

Happy Grandparents

Debbie took the kids on a treasure hunt!

Just after Tom got set apart, excited member in the middle :)


Brooklyn was sad because the water was too cold :(

Debbie jumped off the dock into freezing Lake Tahoe last such luck today.

50 different shades of green

Happily wrapped up in a towel

Go Bob!

"This is ffffffrrrrreeeeezzzzzzing!"

Soooooo CUTE!

Hiking to the adventure in itself!

Debbie enjoying the luxury of our KIA :)

Playa Avellanas, good surf session and great sunset!

This is how they do swings

On our way out on the town!

Playa Tamarindo - right in front of our condo

Soaking up the shade!

The anticipation was more than Brody and Brooklyn could bare, they awaited the arrival of Grandma and Grandpa Burton as though it was Christmas and Santa was on his way! Funny thing is, the next morning when the kids woke up they thought Santa had come. There were so many gifts for the kids from Bob and Debbie and Carol and Dave, we couldn't resist pulling out the palm tree and surrounding it with all the lovely surprises. :) Special thanks to Shauna for picking me up the cutest gym shorts ever, and Chandra for sending down the book and skirt, mom for making multiple stops to get my long list, and Bob and Debbie for carting it all down here!
We wanted to show Bob and Deb a good time, so we took them to a waterfall, to yummy resteraunts, to the gym, to church on Sunday where Tom got called, sustained, and set apart as the new Branch the beach, shopping....
It was a total surprise when they extended him the call, but a tender mercy that Bob and Debbie were in town. Bob is currently serving at the end of his 5th year as Bishop of his ward in Bountiful, and so he was a really great support for Tom while the shock settled in.
The fun didn't stop there. The same day Tom received the call, we arrived home from church looking forward to a Sunday nap. When I entered I was greeted by a mini flood in the condo. Immediately I was fearful that I was reliving the St. George incident, (when Brody washed his hands in the master bath tap and left it running, consequently th e entire bathroom and room below were flooded.) To my great relief a pipe under the master bathtub had broken and the entire tub and separated from the base and was floating on a great deal of water. It sounds bad, I know, but it is so much better than footing a $$$ bill for a little hand wash. It looked like an earthquake had occurred in their... Bob was visiting, but even his bathroom breaks weren't capable of this kind of destruction. A few hours later the mess was cleaned up,a and two days later we could use the tub again. It was no big deal, but it did put a little damper on the day. ( I couldn't resist :))
Bob made his daily run to Langosta Beach for an illegal dip in the Barcelo Pool. (I'm going to have to ask my Branch President about swimming in hotel pools when not a guest...Tom?)
Debbie made us yummy banana bread, and took the kids on a treasure hunt. Now they are making regular requests for a treasure hunt, which is just code for "shopping."
I asked Brody and Brooklyn what their favorite part of having Grandma and Grandpa here was and they said, "The Monkey Park, swimming, and Mandarina (for smoothies)." I am trying to keep up with their smoothie appetite by making them at home, but there is something special about the blue chairs, tropical presentation, and the vita-mix, that make Mandarina the preference by a long shot. I would like a Vita-mix for my birthday. Perhaps with the new blender, a few pineapple stems, clear cups, and a straw, I can save some serious $$$.
Brody and Brooklyn had a lovely time swimming, reading, and having treats with their grandparents. Good food, good friends, good times! Their company and generosity made the week one we will remember forever! We were sad when they left, but we are looking forward to another visit after Christmas. Next up on the 'Pura Vida Life'....Ryan Baughman, come on down!


Yoga On The Beach
I have had the opportunity to try many new things since arriving in Costa Rica. Surfing, Spanish, homemade tortillas, gallo pinto, arroz con pollo....and teaching Yoga. It has been so fun and challenging and I have enjoyed every minute. I teach Ashtanga Yoga, and had the opportunity to take some classes at the Nosara Yoga Institute on one of our weekend trips. I am hoping to go there for a teacher training next year. For now, I am enjoying the many physical and mental benefits of a regular yoga practice.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

And The First Contestant on 'Pura Vida Life' is....Owen Dellinger!

Pirates Cove

Playa Langosta - The sky looks ominous, but we actually had sun all day :)

Owen Sipping on a coconut!

Look at these boys' tan lines, and this was the beginning of his trip!

Owen was our first visitor from the U.S! We had a great time...beach, gym, BBQ, repeat! I had so much fun with my big brother. It is rare that I get to have him to myself, and I really enjoyed it. He is always brining lots of laughter, good food, and good discussions. He also helped me get my Pura Vida Personal Training going. We went and did some Yoga on the beach and he got some pretty cool pics. Thanks Owees, we all hope to see you soon!
Next up...Bob and Debbie, come on down, you are the next contests on...Pura Vida Life!