Once I found out that I had a secured teaching position for the fall {still thanking my luck stars on that one!} Jake’s first order of business, after celebratory hugs and kisses, was to book our babymoon. We had to figure out a plan fast since summer was quickly coming to a close and I knew I wouldn’t be able to take any more time off during the school year since I would be missing between 6 and 12 weeks to stay home with Baby V.

Enter Cancun, Mexico and Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. Dominican Republic was on the short list because we’ve heard some great things about it, but when we looked into travel times it would take us a minimum of 14 hours to get there and that was more time away from the beach. Not that DR is far away, but Austin is a smaller airport and we would have had a million layovers just to get there. It would be wasted days so we opted for Cancun because one of Jake’s colleagues told us about an all inclusive resort that was within budget, beautiful, and most importantly R E L A X I N G.

We stayed at the Riu Cancun {they have inclusive locations all over the Caribbean} and I have to say that it definitely lived up to what we were told. And although a day by day breakdown of what we did was absolutely sinful to us, it would be completely boring reading material. So I opted to share our vacay giving you the top 3 highlights of the week:

1. First day on the beach under a palapa reading The Help while sipping on a virgin pina colada in my hand. I think I might dream about this moment all school year long when things get stressful. I read 2, almost three books, while sitting on the white sandy beaches.

This gives you an idea of how much sitting and relaxing I {we?} did in Cancun. I couldn’t get enough of reading, dipping into the ocean, rinsing off, returning to my lounge chair, repeat. We did manage to take several walks on the beach after each meal. It was just enough exercise to bring us right back to our favorite spot to do the most important parts of vacationing, relaxing.

2. Napping. If you know me well you know that I don’t nap, like ever. I take that back. I napped during senior year in high school, when I went to Hawaii for a college graduation trip, and when I had my wisdom teeth removed {that probably doesn’t count since I was so drugged up}. So you know that this MUST have meant that I was totally and completely relaxed. The naps were more like siestas because I think they all lasted at least an hour each. SO amazing! My eyes are getting heavy just thinking about them now…. Although not the best picture {only babies and furbabies look cute when they sleep}, Jake knew that this {along with eating bacon} was a momentous occasion so we snapped a picture.

3. Visiting the Mayan Chitzen Itza ruins. This part of the trip we did early on so we could  make sure that we could have more time on the beach before we had to leave. You’re probably noticing that for a couple that is all about planning, this trip was the complete opposite way of how we “normally” plan our lives and other trips.

The ruins were a 2.5 hour bus ride away from the hotel. This was probably the only time being pregnant made traveling annoying. Constant wanting to pee and uncomfortable sitting for so long without being able to stretch out made the long bus ride, well long. We had an awesome tour guide though who explained Mayan culture and early civilization that made the long trek into the middle of the jungle {literally} worth it. Pictures don’t even begin to do this place justice. This is a place you must go and experience for yourself.

ruins of an observation tower

When we saw the big pyramid my mouth literally hung open. I was so shocked to see something so huge and so up close. This was in the center of the civilization and served as a meeting place for all of the Mayan peoples to market and listen to their leaders. I knew we wouldn’t be able to walk up to the top of the pyramid so I wasn’t surprised when our tour guide told us that up until 7 years ago you used to be able to walk all the way up to the top of the ruin but due to injuries and weathering away they don’t allow you to walk up anymore. Again, pictures don’t begin to give you an idea of what this ruin was really like. It looks like we are standing quite far away from the pyramid but we are actually pretty up close to it, that’s how massive this thing was!

the pyramid represented the cycles of the earth. it is a living calendar in stone on the outside and used as a sanctuary inside.

It was so amazing to see the architecture and symbolism behind the buildings. I didn’t even know that Chitzen Itza was one of the 7 Man Made Wonders of the World!

After our tour, in 95% humidity and 100 degree temps) mind you {yes it was as awful as you’re thinking}, we headed to a lunch. I wasn’t feeling well due to the heat {I broke our in red hives all over my face and body, got nauseous, and extremely tired} so I didn’t really eat much more than a few homemade tortillas {yum-o} and some rice and beans. Jake said the traditional Mayan food that he tried was really good though.

We headed back to the hotel after some relaxing around the grounds. With an air conditioned bus, I didn’t even mind the long drive home but was MORE than ready to jump in the shower and go to bed early that night.

3. Surprise babymoon gift! I had hinted to Jake that I would love another band for the other side of my engagement ring. Trying to explain a “push gift” was tricky enough but with the upcoming mounting expenses of baby and a vacation I didn’t really expect anything when it came time. What I especially didn’t expect was for  him to buy me a gift to celebrate our baby moon!

first morning in Cancun right before Jake surprised me with a thoughtful gift


And while I didn’t get another band to match my wedding band, I did get a Michael Kors tortoise shell watch. I had spotted a similar gold one awhile back and he totally remembered that I liked the watch. He even managed to make it to the annual summer Nordstroms sale to make sure that he got a good deal. This guy totally knows how to shop!

said watch on my left hand. he knows me so well.

The reason why this is making my top list is because of how much thought Jake put into making this babymoon so special. From booking the flights and hotel to planning a day excursion all the while keeping this special gift a secret I couldn’t be more grateful. He took time to make everything just the way I had asked and didn’t hesitate when I asked for extra pillows to sleep with at night or more ice cold sparkling water with lemon. He let me read for hours, didn’t push any other excursions except the one we both wanted to go on, and woke up early every morning to make sure that we could get our favorite spot on the beach.

When so much of being pregnant revolves around the planning and preparation I am so very grateful that I have this amazing man by my side. Our trip to Cancun was totally about us being together and enjoying quite time alone without the distractions of phones, work, and other day to day obligations. We hadn’t had a trip like this since our honeymoon and when 3 years of marriage was quietly celebrated this past May, this was a much needed time to focus on our relationship and celebrate something so very special to me.

This trip was exactly what I asked for but so much more. It made me realize that we are going to be singing happy birthday to our baby boy or girl towards the end of the year and that he/she will embody qualities from both Jake and myself. Perhaps they’ll have Jake’s big smile and love for life and knowledge? Or maybe my hair color, reminding me of my grandmother each and every day. Whatever he/she decides to be, have, and do I am content and oh so appreciative of the little life that we have created together.

excuse the tan "red" line...


Vacations are a good reminder to slow down and really experience the life the surrounds us. This is something I plan on reminding myself when I get all caught up in life’s stresses. The pictures we’ve already printed and will be framing asap are good reminders to step back and take a few breaths.

We won’t be taking another trip {besides our quick visit home for our couples shower this October} until next year some time but will be happily busy with a newborn and friends and family who are able to make the trek to Austin. Wishing you all had a great summer and were able to include a get-a-way of your own.


One thought on “Babymoon

  1. Angie says:

    Looks like you had a great trip and well deserved!! I’m jealous 🙂

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