flashback friday: the work trip.

by Janetha on January 27, 2012

in day job,flashback,travel

i have a day job. at a window company. do you need windows? call me.

my day job is pretty stressful at times. i have a lot on my shoulders and am very, uh, relied upon.. you could say. they jokingly call me the CEO: chief everything officer.

even though windows aren’t my passion and getting stressed out about installations, collections, and vendors is not a walk in the park.. i still love my job.  yes, LOVE it. i love the people i work for. i love the people i work with. hell, i met my husband at work! the pros definitely outweigh the cons. one of the perks of my job is the annual trip. my bosses treat us to a vacation each year as a “thank you” for all of our hard work.

this year we are going to manzanillo, mexico.

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(image source: resortvacationstogo.com)

we go to mexico more often than not. a few requirements of taking 20+ people on a trip is that it needs to be at an all inclusive resort and it needs to be affordable.. because of these requirements, we usually end up in mexico. i am crossing my fingers for a day they decide to take us all to italy or spain—but i don’t see that happening any time soon. i am excited to go to manzanillo, though, because it is a new-to-me location! i figure if i am going to take the time to travel, i never want to visit the same place twice. there are just so many places to see!  while i don’t prefer all inclusive resorts (i think the best way to experience a new city/country is by staying in hostels/cheap hotels and eating at local restaurants) i am not going to cry about staying at one when i am being treated to a trip. plus, we can always wander off the resort to check out the local flare.

since trip time is here again, i thought it would be appropriate to look back on past trips for flashback friday!

2009: playa del carmen, mexico.

this trip was last minute. the economy was bad and we were not planning to take a trip at all. however, things started to pick up and we planned a quick trip just two weeks before departing. because of the last minute circumstances, marshall couldn’t go. he had never been out of the country, so he didn’t have a passport, and we weren’t about to pay a zillion dollars to expedite one. plus, he couldn’t really financially justify taking a week off work without planning ahead. because marshall couldn’t join me, i ended up rooming with my co-worker, sim, because her husband couldn’t make the trip, either.

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we stayed at the iberostar quetzal all inclusive resort. if you have ever stayed at an iberostar, you will recognize their signature yellow chairs.

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this was my first experience with all inclusive. i was not a big drinker, so the whole all-you-can-drink perk wasn’t super appealing.. and the food got a little (okay, a lot) repetitive and old. but all in all, it was a great experience. the resort was clean, the staff was friendly, and there were animals all over the resort.

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this was back before my food blogging days, but i did take one photo from the hibachi restaurant.. look, a rice mouse!

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i will admit, i missed marshall quite a bit. at least i had my phone to text him from the beach.

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it was a fun trip, for sure, but it didn’t compare to the following year…

2010: jamaica.

it’s safe to say that jamaica has been my favorite work trip so far. first of all, marshall was able to go with me this time around.

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and.. second of all.. WE GOT ENGAGED. on superbowl sunday, no less.

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he caught me totally off guard with that one. sure, we had talked about marriage.. but not seriously. and i had no idea he was plotting to pop the big Q. it was quite the surprise!

the rest of the vacation was awesome. we stayed at the iberostar once again. the resort was a lot newer and nicer than the one in playa del carmen.

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we participated in lots of excursions, including a catamaran snorkel trip…

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…a trip to bob marley’s childhood home…

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…and a ziplining tour.

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we also ate A LOT OF ICE CREAM.

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it was a fabulous trip.

2011: playa del carmen, mexico.. again.

last year we revisited the iberostar in playa again.

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it was more fun for me since marshall was there this time around, and obviously it was fun for him since he’d never been.

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we ate out at local restaurants quite a bit, which was nice.

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and we saw a BUNCH of monkeys! marshall made sure to always have a banana in his pocket in case there was a monkey sighting.

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and sometimes we paid to hold the monkeys in town.

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there were lots of other animals on the resort.

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and, of course, we ate a LOT of ice cream.

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it was a blast!

while i love utah and winter, i am always ready and willing to head to the beach, sand, and sun. i am excited to head to manzanillo! i imagine that this time around, we will do less excursions and eat more ice cream. i think once you’ve zip lined, you don’t really need to do it again.. we have done it twice and decided it’s pretty much the same everywhere we go. plus, we’d rather spend our money on couples massages.. which we plan to get six of. one for each day. that’s normal, right?

i just want to finish this post with a little thank you to my bosses. i am pretty sure they read my blog every so often, and i want them to know how much i appreciate their generosity. i realize that i am in a great situation, i am fortunate to have a wonderful job, and i really love everyone i work for (and with.)

okay, i would love to stay and chat about current events, but i have been procrastinating way too much lately and still have a lot to do before i go! i will try to pop in for a post before peacing out of here.

your turn…. tell me about the best vacation you have ever taken!

xo. janetha g.

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meggi January 27, 2012 at 5:20 pm

wow! What a great company to work for :)

My favorite vacations were probably Grand Cayman because of the snorkeling and sting ray island… and of course Riviera Maya because it was our Honeymoon :)

Allison January 27, 2012 at 5:42 pm

we’re leaving for Mexico next sunday, off to the Quetzal! im pretty excited. last year was my first trip anywhere, to Playa, so of course it has been my best so far haha, hoping this year it’ll top it! twice to Playa will be plenty for me, hopefully next time we can check out Jamaica or Cuba or somethin like that.

Olivia January 27, 2012 at 5:59 pm

That does sound like a great company! Have a wonderful time!!

Michelle (Better with Berries) January 27, 2012 at 6:08 pm

How fun!!! The closest I get to a company vacation is taking a bunch of 14-year-olds to six flags in May. But I am kind of excited for that :-)

I’ve never been to an all-inclusive resort but so want to go! I’m guessing it probably won’t happen until my honeymoon though. And that won’t happen until I’m married. Which won’t happen until I’m engaged :-)

Lindsay @ Lindsay's List January 27, 2012 at 6:20 pm

Do I spy Marshall’s TEETH in a smile?!?! Freaky! ;)

Heidi Nicole January 27, 2012 at 6:21 pm

Have fun!! I’ve never been to an all inclusive resort but I have been on a cruise where the food is a free for all…and it got a bit boring. I’m not a big drinker so that wouldn’t be a huge draw for me either. But it does look like fun to have some quality time in the sun!

Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga January 27, 2012 at 6:27 pm

All these pics make me wanna run back to Aruba, like…tomorrow :)

The best vacation Ive ever taken is every time we go to Aruba with Skylar, it gets better and better b/c she gets older and can appreciate it all more and watching her experience the joy of the beach, traveling, growing up..it’s awesome.

Pure2raw twins January 27, 2012 at 6:35 pm

love seeing these pics! you always can make me smile ;)

i love traveling and wish i could do it more.
xoxo
M

Betty January 27, 2012 at 6:53 pm

Still waiting for it.. I played travel softball so my dad never let me
Go on vacay.. Then I was in school for 3.5 years straight and it wasn’t an option then.. I’m working on it

Heather (Heather's Dish) January 27, 2012 at 8:06 pm

sooooooo jealous :) i can’t pick a favorite trip, but definitely anywhere in Hawaii or the Caribbean. please and thank you!

Carly January 27, 2012 at 8:35 pm

Best Vacay I ever went on was to Cuba for 8 days. Cuba itself kinda sucked (the weather and food were bad), but I went with 7 of my best friends. Just try and have a bad time!

The Healthy Hostess January 27, 2012 at 9:04 pm

I love traveling! Just seeing your beach pics makes me want to go right now! We are going to Mexico in March and can’t wait! Anna’s passport just arrived in the mail this week. This little bald baby passport is hilarious!
Can’t wait to hear more about your trip!

BroccoliHut January 27, 2012 at 9:08 pm

One of my favorite vacations was going to Disney World with Seth for spring break. We had only been dating for a few months, but I think it was during that trip that we fell head over heels in love :)
Sorry corn-ball moment over.
SO glad you had a good time!

BroccoliHut January 27, 2012 at 9:11 pm

Sorry, brain fart–I’m still thinking that this is 2011. Now I realize that you haven’t gone yet. Hope 2012’s trip is just as awesome as those in year’s past!

Jess@atasteofconfidence January 27, 2012 at 9:13 pm

Those look like great trips. I LOVE ziplining!

momma b. January 27, 2012 at 9:15 pm

You are a lucky lady…….sun, surf, sand, massages AND ice cream…..yep I’m jealous! But I know how harsh you and Marshall work so I hope you guys have an awesome time :)

I’d have to say I am partial to Costa Rica……but I love travel of any kind!

xo

momma b. January 27, 2012 at 9:20 pm

Hard not harsh haha!

Jennyb January 28, 2012 at 1:45 am

My favourite has to be a school trip to Hoy, one of the Orkney Islands in Scotland. Not your average school trip – a kayaking & walking expedition. But on an islands that has only 200 inhabitants, the peacefulness & freedom from traffic etc We were up the end of the island away from the other houses, so played cricket in the road, sunbathed in the road & only saw 3 cars a day! It was pre technology days (12 years ago) so i didn’t miss the internet or my lap top & embraced the isolation. It was light for so long that i could site outside on the wall at 5 am and listen the the birds. I would love to go back there more than anywhere in the world.

But i think the risk is that when you’ve enjoyed something so much, if you go back again, its not going to be exactly the same & i hate that disappointed feeling.

Lauren January 28, 2012 at 3:58 am

That is so rad that your boss takes you on vacation each year. I feel like some years, I’m lucky if I even get to schedule myself a vacay. :) Have a blast in Mexico girl!

melissanibbles January 28, 2012 at 4:39 am

I think it was your 2009 trip that I started reading your blog…one of your trips. I loved that you traveled with healthy foods in your hotel room and it helped me a lot because I was going on a trip of my own the following week and I packed a ton of healthy shit for my hotel room inspired by your post! Too funny right? I hope you have a blast!

Life's a Bowl January 28, 2012 at 4:42 am

That’s totally freaking awesome that your work whisks you away! I remember reading a couple of your past posts, especially feeding the monkeys last year… Have a blast, eat lots of ice cream and get lots of massages :D Danggg, that’s my kinda vaca!

Lauren @ What Lauren Likes January 28, 2012 at 6:26 am

Sounds and looks like a great trip!! Love the pics :)

Haley January 28, 2012 at 7:00 am

My favorite trip has to be a family trip to Hawaii or the study-abroad semester I did…favorites for different reasons

Have a blast!!

Melissa January 28, 2012 at 7:18 am

I am SO jealous!

My favorite vacation was when we went to Jamaica 6 years ago. I LOVED it, Dan did not.

We are going to Hawaii in April, i’m weird, for some reason I am not excited

The Delicate Place January 28, 2012 at 8:25 am

woo! i hope you have an incredible time you deserve it for working so hard! the best vacation i ever took was paris 2010 with nate. sigh. incredible, so much that i’ve got some trips up my sleeve for may 2012. details to follow ;)

Jessica @ Stylish Stealthy and Healthy January 28, 2012 at 8:49 am

We did Jamaica for our honeymoon and it was amazing. But we did not have the pleasure of visiting Bob Marley’s childhood home, and of that I am extremely jealous.

Amanda January 28, 2012 at 11:03 am

Andy and I are still oogling the cute monkey eating a banana. Why are animals so freaking cute?

My favorite trip so far was our honeymoon in Italy. It was expensive as all hell but it was so memorable. My only regret is not buying a better camera beforehand.

Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning January 28, 2012 at 3:12 pm

I don’t want to sound like a whiner, but I am so jealous that you have such a wonderful job perk! You definitely don’t get any (tangible) perks when you’re a teacher! I’ve only been to Mexico one- to Cabo San Lucas. And I wouldn’t go back (we couldn’t even go on the beach!). But, I’d love to go to OTHER parts of Mexico!
I have to say that our yearly trip to Colorado is always my favorite week of the whole year. And this year I’m going twice- thanks to Blend! :)
My honeymoon may have been my favorite trip overall though. We flew into Seattle, rented a car, and drove all over Washington, Northern Oregon and up to British Columbia. Along the way we stayed at Mt. Rainer (my favorite part of the whole trip), the Columbia River Gorge, Dundee and Astoria, Oregon; Olympic National Park in Washingon, Victoria, Vancouver and Seattle (in that order). We did a ton of hiking, biking, kayaking and even more EATING AND DRINKING. I’d loooove to go back and do it all over again!

Sarah @ The Healthy Diva January 28, 2012 at 4:09 pm

What a nice trip down memory lane. I hope your upcoming vacation is just as fun!!!

Toronto Girl West January 28, 2012 at 6:33 pm

I love looking at your past vacations and reading about your engagement (such a lovely post btw)!!!

As for my best vacation – there have been a few that were incredibly magical. I’ve loved any time I travelled in Europe! But in terms of more recent ones, I love the very first one we took to our wedding resort in San Jose del Cabo. In fact, the Husband and I were talking the other day about how that was our favourite resort we had ever visited! :)

dana January 28, 2012 at 7:50 pm

Wahaha! Your company is great Janetha!!
My best vacation would have to be my trip to Montreal. It was like going to Europe, only in Canada. Definitely going to try that Chobani for sure.
Thanks for the inspiring recipes!

Kait January 31, 2012 at 10:15 am

Cheesy answer: the vacation where I met my beau. We were both 16 at the time so neither of us thought anything of it.

Deep Answer: The 12 days I spent in Eastern Europe for one of my classes exploring the intersections between the Holocaust and Judaism. A good balance of moving experiences and college drama.

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