SNUBA with Catalina Scuba Luv

Catalina Scuba LuvI love being under water. There is beauty and grace. The fish. The kelp. They flow in an elegant rhythm. After swimming with whales, sharks, dolphins, manta rays, sting rays, and dozens of species of fish, I still haven’t been dive certified. It’s high on my list, but I need more practice using the regulator and I still feel a sense of claustrophobia or panic. It’s like I can’t breathe, but I know it’s all in my head. I went to Catalina last weekend to try SNUBA with Catalina Scuba Luv. I wanted to suppress the fear and maybe overcome it. After years of panicking and still trying, I finally found my comfort zone under the water.  Continue reading

Mauritius is a Sea of New Colors

Boats in Mauritius

Our visit to Mauritius and Constance Hotels & Resorts was filled with a multitude of color. It’s diversity, uniqueness, pristine beaches, rich culture, and varied activities left Athena and I both wanting more. But the true draw to Mauritius for me was its new shades of color that I didn’t know existed. The ocean’s blues called my name and wrapped me like a blanket. I’ve included a few of my favorites so you could experience the beauty of the ocean in Mauritius. Which one calls your name?  Continue reading

5 Amazing Underwater Encounters

beluga whales

Every time I have an underwater encounter, it’s a magical experience. It’s essentially diving into a different world filled with incredible sights and animals. I’m scared; no that’s an understatement. I’m petrified. I know so little about the dangers and beauties of the ocean. Although it has always been a huge part of my life, I fear what could kill me, bite me, or I guess even swim near me. Not all fears are rational, but that doesn’t make them go away. It’s this feeling of uncertainty and discovery that draws me back time and time again to the ocean. Over the last two years, I’ve had five remarkable underwater encounters including swimming with schools of fish, dolphins, beluga whales, whale sharks, and manta rays. Each encounter was uniquely amazing and life-changing. Each encounter has given me a new perspective and encouragement to continue learning about the magical world underwater. Continue reading

A Front Row Seat to Whale Watching

Yesterday, Darren and I had a front row experience with pilot whales thanks to Captain Zodiac. Kona Hawaii’s most experienced rafting company, Captain Zodiac Raft Expeditions was established in 1974. Our captain, Colin, took us on an intimate journey to Kealakekua Bay, Hawaii’s finest marine preserve and the site of Captain Cook’s Monument, but it was the journey that ended up being the best destination.

Before we even arrived at the snorkeling site, we found a pod of pilot whales enjoying the Hawaiian sun. Rather than just taking photos, Darren and I captured them on video.

Surrounded by whales larger than our 24 foot zodiac, I felt a new appreciation for life below. It doesn’t get much more natural or beautiful than our Captain Zodiac experience.

I’ll Take the Beach Any Day – Virginia Beach

Seeing the ocean adds years to my life! I’m calmer, more relaxed, and at peace. Life isOcean Sands Resort Virginia Beach
less stressful. How could I see things less than perfect when the soothing waves are crashing next to me, the sand is warm and soft below my feet, and the ocean smell is in the air? Marketing companies should create a beach scent that is vented through office buildings. I bet they would make billions. Continue reading

Look at that View! Ocean Sands Resort, Virginia Beach

Waking up to the sound of the waves, strolling along the beach, and walking barefoot in theOcean Sands Resort Virginia Beach sand is my idea of a spectacular day; add my husband and my baby girl, and I can’t think of a better way to spend Labor Day weekend. Ocean Sands Resort in Virginia Beach offers all of the above in a hotel room that resembles home. This week, we put aside our adrenaline shoes and slipped into our sandals for a relaxing retreat at the beach. Continue reading

The Grab-And-Go Kayak – Sevylor QuikPak K5 Inflatable Kayak

We moved to southern California for the year-round sunshine, Pacific Ocean beachfront activities, and unlimited opportunities for adventure, but with two cars and no access to a truck or SUV it can be difficult hauling sports equipment to the beach or local hot spots. Our first purchase, before we even owned a couch, was a surf board. We needed something large since we were beginner, or worse, surfers and hauling around the board proved to be a difficult task let alone getting it strapped to the car. Now that I’m pregnant, surfing is out for a few months but I miss the ocean terribly. I needed an activity where I could still be on the water but I didn’t need to worry about causing stress on the baby. I want to cruise the Pacific Ocean in comfort without hauling along a huge surfboard, paddleboard, or full-size kayak. The Sevylor QuikPak K5 inflatable, backpack kayak is the grab-and-go kayak. Portable and lightweight with an integrated backpack storage system, the QuikPak easily folds up into a backpack and fits into the backseat or truck of our car. Darren can easily transport both kayaks and we can enjoy a relaxing afternoon in the marina without worrying about transporting or carrying the kayaks. Gone are the days of longing to be on the water! With the QuikPak, I can still enjoy the Pacific Ocean at my own, pregnant pace.   Then, when our precious cargo arrives, we still have top-of-the-line, durable, portable kayaks; it’s the best of both worlds. Continue reading