Monday, November 7, 2011

Don't Forget

 We have been wanting to go to Dubrovnik, Croatia for some time.  The entire country is on the Adriatic Coast with many small islands to visit and explore.  We packed up two kids, two strollers,  baby food, and diapers.  I think I may have had only two pair of pants for myself in our luggage! 
Dubrovnik's old city was charming with the cobblestone walking streets, old shops and churches. This is a picture of Blake and me on the main street of the old city.

 As always, I was fascinated with their form of government (some politicians could only hold office for a month), their history and what architecture still remained despite their earthquakes and wars.
Louie and I went two days ahead  (due to some logistical reasons).  He loved chasing pigeons through the square, eating ice cream, and going to see the fish, sea turtles and eels in the aquarium.

Once Cody and Blake joined us, we walked/hiked the many steps along the city walls.  The scenery was stunning. 

Afterwards, we enjoyed some ice cream.  This was Blake's first taste and second and third!  He kept grabbing my hand to bring over more when he was ready.

The following day, we took a boat and sailed to three different islands. We walked through the small towns, saw the local cow and played on the beach.  Louie and Blake really enjoyed being on the boat too.  Until at the end of the day, Louie kept telling me that his tummy hurt.  I thought he was hungry.  Quite the opposite, he chose to get rid of anything in his stomach and onto my legs!  Poor guy was sea sick! 

One day we took a road trip to Montenegro in our little roller skate of a rental car.  Our GPS led us astray to some of the most stunning views.  After 32 switchbacks, we came to the top of the mountain and found a bar and a small, small farming village.  Clearly, we were not close to our destination - the Bay of Kotor.  We walked around, changed some diapers, ate a few snacks and then back down the switchbacks.  This picture is at switchback #14 where you can see the bay below.
 At this point we still hadn't found it.  Back to the bottom of the mountain, we saw the clearly huge sign we missed due to our dutiful efforts to follow our GPS.  The bay at sundown was like a picture postcard.  So beautiful. This picture doesn't do it justice
We packed up two kids into two strollers and off we went into the tiny old city.  We had some delicious pizza al fresco and strolled the streets until the kids were absolutely DONE; which made for a peaceful ride back to Dubrovnik.  Loved Montenegro -- would definitely go back.
 Our last day was spent in Bosnia.  On our drive to Mostar, it was surprising to see many of the buildings hadn't been repaired since the war.  The people were very friendly and helpful when our GPS once again was guiding us along the "shortest route!"  Once in Mostar we found the famous Old Bridge and cobblestone streets of the old city.  The main street was very fairytale-esque.  We bought some fun old fashioned children's toys from a shop and of course magnets to add to our collection. 

This sign is leaning against the left side of the pink store.
Cody and I were so TIRED when we got home.  Who knew?  The days of coming home relaxed, refreshed and rejuvenated from a vacation are a thing of the past.  However, we enjoy taking the kids to see, to learn about other countries and cultures of the world.  When is the next time we are going to have a conversation with Louie as to why that building is "broken?" while traveling through Bosnia.  Amongst our exhaustion, this is the take home message we can't forget.