We’re now in Tamarindo! It was a bit of adventure getting here. The roads have one sign at each intersection. Hopefully you don’t miss it! At least for major, major intersections there would be a series of signs to fit all the place names they were directing towards. We went through Filadelfia which looked like a major city on the map. Ya, not so much. We did hit up the ATM, get Jeremiah a phone card, and get gas there. :)

Tamarindo itself is so, so different from Playa Hermosa.  It is full of tourist shops, places to eat, taxis, and people selling stuff. There is a dirt road right off of a major intersection which was a bit confusing because we just assumed that wasn’t our turn.  Usually on the map dirt roads are indicated by a smaller width line. While in Playa Hermosa we heard monkeys and never saw them. We saw monkeys almost as soon as we got here yesterday right at our hotel!  It was a small group, including a baby, munching on one of the trees.  Then when we headed out to explore the town we saw a group of 20 or so crossing from one tree to the next over the road.  They’d loop their tail onto the tree for safety then reach out as far as possible grabbing onto a small branch from the next tree and pull until it was thick enough to move onto.  Even the ones carrying babies!  The babies must have a good grip.  One monkey (must have been a teenager!) lept to the next tree in very dramatic fashion.

Culinary Adventures in Costa Rica

This is day 2 in Costa Rica. We decided to upgrade from a “standard” room to a villa. Basically it’s a suite. The main feature for us is the kitchen. We just got back from a trip to the local supermercado with a bunch of food we aren’t actually quite sure how to cook. Haha.

Jeremiah is making a stir fry with tiquisque (a kind of taro root), yucca root, mexican zucchini (at least that’s what we call it at home), and garlic plus pan fried cod on the side. He can’t quite get over how fresh the fish is.

UPDATE: Just tried the fish and it’s amazing. Creamy and soft like scalops… almost like eating the lightest fluffiest butter you’ve ever tasted. Plus this is just the fish – no seasoning.

Back from the Engaged Encounter

We spent last weekend at a retreat for engaged couples. It was at the historic San Lois Ray Mission in Oceanside, CA. The classes started on Friday night and went until Sunday afternoon. We were each assigned a roommate (of the same sex) and lived dormitory style. All meals were provided. The schedule was very busy and left very little time for breaks and snacks.

What is the Engaged Encounter? In their own words:

“Catholic Engaged Encounter is a weekend retreat away with other engaged couples with plenty of time alone together to plan for a sacramental marriage. It is designed to give couples planning marriage the opportunity to dialogue honestly and intensively about their prospective lives together– their strengths and weaknesses, desires, ambitions, goals, their attitudes about money, sex, children, family, their role in the church and society–in a face to face way.”

We believed that going to something like this was important for several reasons. We knew that there had to be a few important subjects that we had not discussed. We knew that this retreat would bring those to the surface and make us talk about them. We also knew that they would teach us tools to better understand each other and increase communication. We are also an interfaith couple and this retreat addresses that.

We left exhausted but glad that we went. We both believe that our marriage will be stronger, more affectionate, and more tranquil because of it.

A Day at the Beach in December

It was a great, summer like day so we decided to get out and make the most of it. We started off with lunch and margaritas overlooking the water. Then we rented a tandem bike and rode around boardwalk. We took some nice pictures of us with the bike. They came out really nice and will make good engagement photos.