hAppY BirThDAy, GraNdpA sTeVe!


If you haven't visited Santa at the Country Mercantile, you should. They'll let you decorate cookies and ride the train all the way to the North Pole. Very cute. I thought if Emerson saw me sitting on Santa's lap, she'd realize there was no harm in it. Unless of course, you're Santa. You should have seen the look of horror on Santa's face when I suggested it. He clearly was trying to remember his contractual obligations and whether he'd agreed to offer his lap to middle aged women. And because Trevor, I mean Santa, was very uncomfortable with the thought of his former teacher and mother's colleague sitting on his lap, I sat on the arm of his chair instead. ;) Neither Emerson nor Ryker bought it. And so this is the only picture we have of Santa. Regardless, it was nice of Trevor, I mean Santa, to come all this way and give us a candy cane! And dear sweet Vixen is on his last legs. In fact, I'd go so far as to say, he won't make it to Christmas. Poor Vixen!


A Tippett Family Vacation

Cancun, Quintana Roo

The Westin Lagunamar Ocean Resort has three continuous infinity pools. Most days, we arrived shortly after 9:00 and stayed until 4:00ish. Even then, we had to drag the kids away. It was rough. Em couldn't get enough of the water slide and Ryker was pretty impressed with lunch and refreshments at the swim-up pool bar. The final wall of the infinity pool is visible in the photo below and if you look really close, you'll see Ryan and Ryker waiting their turn at the top of the slide.

And as usual, Ryker got a kick out of being thoroughly abused by that Uncle Todd. ;)

We decided to visit Isla Mujeres, per my father's recommendation, and loved it. Everything about this excursion was just our style. Upon disembarking the ferry, we grabbed a map, rented a couple of golf carts and set out to see what we could see. Now I'm the first to admit I'd rather sight see than navigate and am pretty miserable at doing them simultaneously but there were only a couple of minor navigational errors. ;) Isla Mujeres is five miles long and barely 100 yards across in some areas. It is so rich in color. I love color!

We found a beautiful beach complete with free (yes, I said FREE) beach chairs and a convenient grass hut grill with breakfast tacos AND hotcakes on the menu. We enjoyed the tranquil surf of Playa Norte for a while and then meandered on to a turtle sanctuary. We later enjoyed grilled Amberjack tacos, called tikinshik, at a little beach cafe on the opposite end of the island. They were so good! Eat your heart out Lane W. :)

The Mayan ruins of Tulum are beautiful. Dates lifted from these ruins are from as early as 550 AD. Tulum's heyday was much later though, around 1200-1550 AD when Spaniard's set out to conquer the Yucatan Peninsula. The job was made easy due to their bringing of old world diseases which decimated the Mayan population. And so this city, like so many before it, was abandoned to the elements during the mid 1200s. We later enjoyed Xel-ha's Eco-park, which is the largest outdoor aquarium in the world. It offers a myriad of activites and ecological features. We especially enjoyed tubing through a mangrove forest and swimming in a small cenote. Shame on us all for failing to purchase a great picture of Marlene cliff jumping. Rosalyn and I didn't quite make it to the floating bridge on our snorkeling adventure and I'm glad for it. The fish there (Amberjack, I heard) were huge and I can say for certain, I prefer them grilled! My only regret is not taking more pictures at Xel-ha. But it was really wet.

Not twenty feet below the infinity pool at Lagunamar, lie a beautiful stretch of beach. We especially enjoyed watching the sun go down and the waves roll in during early evening. A big thanks to Rosalyn for finding this place!

So much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving and always - Especially for FAITH and HEALTH both of which without we'd be unable to enjoy our many blessings! We hope your Thanksgiving was also wonderful and enriched with family and fellowship.