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Thursday, May 31, 2012

LaForce Likes #12

Since tomorrow marks June 1st and summer is here this LaForce Likes is about my favorite sun hat from San Diego Hat Company.
When at the pool or beach or on the lake I like to protect my face from the sun. Most sun hats do not allow you to do this while having your hair in a ponytail which is a must in my opinion if you have hair long enough to be pulled back. This hat, really a visor, is perfect for hair up or down and rolls up nicely for packing. It fits everyone because of the adjustable velcro closure and it is stylish with a variety of colors!
I got this 5 years ago and I am STILL using it as you probably saw from my St. Maarten post. They have various other styles of hats/visors as well. I have given a few as gifts and the receivers have enjoyed theirs too!

Hooray for summer!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Southern Caribbean Cruise: St. Kitts

The next day was St. Kitts. This was Valentines Day so naturally the men and women decided to spend some quality time apart. Just kidding, we actually did this because Eric and Keith wanted to scuba dive in St. Kitts and it just happened to be Valentines Day but Megan did tell our steward that the key to a successful marriage was some quality time apart :)

Megan and I set out bright and early for a tour of the island. I booked Rose and Jim's taxi tour after much research and it was a fantastic deal. We had an elderly couple join us after I posted about it on cruisecritic so that cut our cost in half.

We rode around in one of those 15 passenger van type deals with Rose as our guide. She was extremely knowledgeable about St. Kitts having lived there a long time and would stop any time we wanted to hop out and take pictures.

fort close to downtown Basseterre

There was a tour of the town, driving by a sugar plantation, driving through a little rain forest area to get to Romney Manor and seeing how batik is done at the manor, the botanical gardens around the manor, and then driving to Timothy Hill to see the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Sea meeting. All the while Rose talked about the island history, life on the island, different plants, animals, you name it.

the bottle tree

batik making
batik process
batik process continued

They have so much that grows there. We got to smell the ginger plant in the botanical gardens. We saw a man with a pet monkey and also many monkeys in nature - very common there.

ginger plant

Timothy Hill views were amazing and a must see. I took a ton of photos there hoping to end up with one we can frame in our house. We saw a bunch of German bicyclists there from one of the other ships in port.

The entire tour (start until arriving back at the dock) was about 3 hours and I would highly recommend this to anyone for their first visit to St. Kitts.

Megan and I arrived back to the dock just as it started raining and in time for lunch. We were glad we had our tour first thing. This was the only day during vacation that it rained some. After lunch it had stopped raining and we walked into St. Kitts downtown to buy a few souvenirs for our niece.
Valentine's display in the Windjammer
downtown Basseterre

Meanwhile the husbands went on a scuba diving adventure. It was their first time scuba diving in the ocean as their other dives had been in lakes/rivers/pools for their certifications.

Eric shot a great pic of our ship... there she is in all her glory.

They had a great time at 2 different dive sites.

Once they returned it was about time to sail away so we headed up to our spot at the Seaview for snacks and to enjoy the views of St. Kitts.

Then we got ready for dinner. Here are a few food shots.

We relaxed after dinner and did some walking around the ship too.

Then we had another towel animal waiting!

Next up is Dominica and Barbados!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

LaForce Likes #11

This week's LaForce Likes is beach themed bathrooms! What better way to end up with a peaceful space than using a beachy theme. Love love the beach!

Our guest bath is currently a "wanna be beach theme" meaning that is the vision I have for it but currently it only has a few beach things in it: 2 silver buckets with sand and shells on the counter, a big shell on the counter and sand/khaki colored rug and shower curtain.

It definitely needs some wall art, colorful towels, and possibly a shelf. Here is some inspiration I found for a beach bathroom.



I want it to be calm and peaceful without overdoing the beach theme or it being tacky.

I see some trips to Homegoods in my future! Any beach inspiration you would like to share?

Friday, May 18, 2012

My new plate wall

As I mentioned here,  I have always known I wanted a white plate wall on a wall in my living room. Not too long after getting the house we got 2 eggplant armless chairs for the space and then in the fall I finally got the round pedestal table I was desperately wishing for to go in between the 2 chairs.

All this time I had also been collecting white plates here and there from Goodwill, Salvation Army, clearance aisles at TJ Maxx, Marshalls and Homegoods.

Finally I thought I had enough. Over the Christmas holiday my mom helped me arrange them all on brown paper. There was a lot of maneuvering around and then we traced them onto the paper and numbered them. I numbered the corresponding plates too with tape.

We taped up the brown paper onto the wall and then later err... like 2 1/2 months later we decided to hang them. You can see the brown paper in the background here.

 I had bought those yellow Disc things that you wet and put on the backs of the plates. Well let me tell you how I feel about those discs... EPIC FAIL. We followed the instructions exactly but some of them still didn't stick well to the plates. I read about others having similar problems so I duct taped the discs on.
the evil disc hangers

I cut out the shapes for the plates in the brown paper and we hung them. Hanging went pretty smoothly since nothing had to be exact since none of the plates were lined up or anything.

Then I cut the paper away and just a wonderful plate wall was left!

Just to reinforce my thoughts on the Discs... a day after hanging the plate in the bottom right (the flower one) fell and luckily landed on the purple chair with no damage. The disc was still hanging by the nail in the wall and the plate with duct tape still on it had slipped right off! I reinforced that one with even more duct tape. There have been no problems since but I definitely would NOT recommend using these to hang anything that is really precious to you. For me, the most one of these plates cost was $10 and most were $1. If anyone knows of a better product where you don't see the hanging hardware let me know!

 If you are hanging a plate wall or any plates the brown paper tracing method was a big success for us. I really love the white contrast with the purple chairs. I need to figure out something a little taller to put on the round table and I'm still trying to figure out lighting (table lamp vs. floor lamps vs. both) in this space and selling that tree so more to come!!

Linking up at these fun parties
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