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Dad and Kathy's visit
02/11/2011, Barra, Tenacatita & Puerto Vallarta

Well Dad and Kathy have come and gone. It passed by that quickly. It seems like we were just picking them up at the airport yesterday and today we dropped them off to go home.
We picked them up in Puerto Vallarta on the 3rd of February and drove down to Barra de Navidad the next day. We spent 4 days in Barra where they stayed at the Delphin Hotel and we did various things during the days. One day we spent at the Grand Bay Hotel just hanging out at the pool ordering fancy drinks and playing crib (thanks to my friends Penny & Fred from Tapatai who gave us a pass to use the pool for the day). Another day we drove up to Colima hoping to catch a glimpse of the volcano's in the area. We did see it sort of. It was a big hill covered from 3/4 of the way up by a very large cloud. We did drive to the town of Comala where we enjoyed a sampling of appetizers that are continually brought out to you in the restaurants at the town square. You order a few drinks and the appys are free.
And we also spent some time just hanging out in Barra enjoying the small quaint town and the markets there. I think that both dad and Kathy really enjoyed this town. They also got a tour of the village Ian and I love called La Manzanilla, including the big crocodiles at the end of the village.
Then for 3 days we went out in the boat to the bay of Tenacatita and anchored out. We enjoyed the company of friends Beth and Norm from Sara Jean one evening. We were graced by dolphins in the bay swimming around the boat and finishing off their show by jumping 7 or 8 times just at sunset! One day Kathy and Ian took off in the dingy full speed hoping to catch up to the Humpback whales that were in the bay. Kathy was given a personal close up view and she also go spashed by the big waves in the bay but she loved every minute. She also had another first in that she swam in salt water for the first time in her life. Dad and Ellen spent some time playing crib together with dad winning most of the games. Oh Yes! We also had the pleasure of celebrating dad's 82nd birthday on the 8th! We had a nice dinner of barbequed fish at the palapa restaurant on the beach and then had chocolate cake on the boat later on. Happy 82nd dad and here's to many many more!
All in all it was a great 10 days and we are so happy that they came and spent them with us. We are hoping that they come again soon.
Check in the gallery for photos from their visit.

02/12/2011 | Dad & Kathy
Hi Ellen & Ian. We realy enjoyed our visit with
you! We can;t wait to do it again. That was a
million dollar trip. We did and seen things we
couldn't have done without you two! Thank you so much. Love you both!
02/13/2011 | Wendy
How wonderful your dad & his wife came to visit you, what a wonderful birthdday for him & the ultimate adventure for the both of them! You are very lucky to have a father who is adventurous...
02/14/2011 | Carole and Ken
Sounds like you had a fabulous time with your Dad and kathy visiting. Glad to see that all is well in Mexico!
02/16/2011 | Alan & Brenda
Great pic's and enjoy reading the adventures. I believe you have meet up with Lou & Cloes on S/V White Shell from Comox I saw some pic's of you and Ellen at the rafting party on there web site. It's great to see that your fully enjoying life and it help's me make it though all this snow at our new home in Ontario. Great sailing, Alan & Brenda
Huichol Artworks

This artwork is stunning. The colours are amazing and it is all done with thread pushed into wax! The Huichol indians are from central Mexico. They also do 3d artwork pushing beads into wax figurines.

Huichol Art
02/11/2011, Puerto Vallarta

More artwork.

02/25/2011 | jean
WOW! These are amazing Ellen. Thanks for posting. What intricate work.
Barra Sunset
01/31/2011, Barra de Navidad

This sunset picture I did take it was a beautiful evening and I rowed out a bit to get Kasasa in the shot.

01/31/2011 | pat
Love your photos Ellen! The stew looks yummy! I am in Saskatoon and enjoying -34 C weather.....brrrrr. I can just feel the warmth of Mexico. Have a good visit with your Dad. We will see you again this year....I need to warm up. Get the recipe for the stew, will you.
Lv Pat
01/31/2011 | Pamela and Pat
What beautiful photos! I've looked up the recipe for the stew on the Internet and will give it a go down at Apollo Bay next weekend ... it won't be the same without the lava bowl, though. We're in the middle of a heatwave (40 degrees C every day) and hanging out for some coolth. Love, P & P
02/02/2011 | Marilyn Kirk
Beautiful picture ... I just love it and love reading about all your adventures. Barra is a cool little town ... I have pictures that I took on my walls.
02/05/2011 | ron howell
hey Ian and Ellen, looks like a sailors delight, I am very envious, take care
02/06/2011 | Gerald
Hello: I hear that Andy and Kathy made it out their. Glad to hear. Hoping that Andys hand is OK. The pictures look beautiful. Lets hope that the weather stays as beautiful as the pictures? Tell them Gerald and Tammy say HI.
02/07/2011 | Tony
Thanks for sharing the pictures and stories. Helen and I miss you for our morning breakfast meetings. I'll be in Hawaii April 14-25 if you are in the hood...
02/25/2011 | jean
gorgeous photo! What reflection.
Barra Sunrise
01/31/2011, Barra de Navidad

This photo was taken of Kasasa by another boat called Katti Hill which was nice of them since I'm not usually awake that early to see it myself.

01/31/2011, Barra de Navidad

This bubbling Mexican stew is called a Molcajete (pronounced Mocahetty) and is absolutely the best stew I've ever eaten (except of course Ian's Oxtail Stew). A Molcajete is actually the lava rock bowl which the stew is served in. They heat the bowl very very hot and put the stew which is not spicy hot but kind of tangy, and they put the Mexican cheese on top of the stew and serve it to you bubbling hot in the hot lava bowl. Comes with your choice of chicken, seafood, beef or pork. I just LOVE it.
Most of the restaurants here in Barra seem to serve it so I may just have to sample my way around town!
Barra is a laid back place and we are enjoying it. Yesterday there was a fund raiser in the town square and it was a Chili Cook Off. You bought tickets for Chili tasting at 5 pesos a ticket which is less than 50 cents. There were about 20 different booths with Chilli and Salsa which was also in a contest. We managed to taste about 5 places and then we were full. You got a small bowl for 1 ticket. During all of this there was raffle draws, live music and after the cook off there was local dancers from the village in their beautiful costumes. Still later there was a band and a dance. We didn't quite make it that late. But it was a very fun event and we hoped they raised lots of money for the local charities. It was very crowded so I'm sure that they did.
Today we took a long walk around the very posh golf course that is part of the Grand Bay hotel here in town. I don't golf and if I did, that would be a nice course to try but I believe I heard prices start around 2 hundred dollars to play and you have to hire a caddy, cart and tips so your probably looking at 3 hundred dollars to play. YIKES. At least it was free to walk around.

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