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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Brady's Mario Piranha Cookie Pops - Nerdy Nummies

On Brady's 20th birthday he was here visiting and we just returned from our vacation from Puerto Vallarta.

While Brady was here he wanted to make Mario Piranha Cookies for his birthday.

He brought all the supplies from Salt Lake City to make them. He got the idea to make these cute cookies from the video above from "Nerdy Nummies".

He invited his friend Danielle to spend the day with him and make them.

The night before I put out my recipes for sugar cookies and chocolate frosting. I also pulled out the required butter so that it would be room temperature and ready to go in the morning.

I stayed out of his way and let him have access to my kitchen. Plus he really didn't want me hanging around and bugging them when he hadn't seen Danielle for over a year.

**Sorry, some of the pictures are blurry (darn) but I wanted to include them. 
Instead of the "boxed" sugar cookies shown in the video, he made my sugar cookies recipe (which I think is the best recipe out there). You can find my sugar cookie recipe here:  

Brady added sucker sticks to the Piranha Cookie. They turned out great! He just used a drinking glass and cut out the wedge for the mouth. 
Before they started the cookies, they painted these little pots green with an edible non-toxic paint. 
They made brownies from a box I had on hand. They filled the green pots with the brownie mix. 
Then they crushed Oreo cookies (minus the yummy filling) and topped the brownies with crushed Oreo's to look like dirt. 
They frosted the cookies with red frosting.
Brady purchase a tube of red frosting, but they didn't think they would have enough so they asked me to make some red frosting. I used a whole bottle of red food coloring to get it as red as they needed, The frosting color did turn out as red as the tube frosting which made me happy that I had enough stuff on hand so they didn't need to run to the store and get another tube of expensive frosting. I wish he wouldn't have purchased the tube frosting - it's too expensive, but he's just learning to make things from scratch. 
He also purchased the white frosting in a tube for the mouth and the spots on the Piranha cookies. 
Danielle is showing her green hands from coloring the sticks with an edible green marker. 
Next he purchased some green fondant and leaf molds for the leaves by the cookie stem on the dirt. 
They turned out so cute. 
And look at those cute kids!

 I loved having Brady home with Danielle for the day. It's such a nice feeling when I've been an empty nester and the only one in my house day after day - LOL! I just cherish those moments when I have company or my children are home. 
After the cookies were complete they went to "Big Al's" where is other best friend Amber works. She was able to take a break, enjoy Piranha Cookies and visit with Brady.

The next day was Brady's 20th Birthday and Danielle and Amber spent the night. They stayed up most of the night visiting. It was the only time they could all get together while Brady was in town. Brady asked me if it was OK and I said sure - I totally trust Danielle and Amber. Plus, I'd much rather have him safe at home then somewhere that could possible have temptation there. 

I love that Brady is cooking these cute Nerdy Nummies. He's having a blast with his creativity. It's a great outlet for some fun! 

Monday, August 11, 2014

Puerto Vallarta Vacation Part 6 Dolphins

Brady, Sharon and I decided we wanted to swim with the dolphins and so we booked the adventure. 
Jason, Lawrence and Mitch didn't want to come.

We booked it at the hotel and unfortunately the girl who booked it for us was just new to her job and totally messed up the paperwork. We were responsible for our own transportation to Vallarta Adventures so we grabbed a taxi at the hotel. I showed our taxi driver the brochure and told him that was where we were going. It was a little scary to leave without the men and be in charge to get us there when we speak English and everyone there speaks Spanish.

When we arrived at Vallarta Adventures they told us we were at the wrong place and they told our taxi driver where we were suppose to go from our receipt from the hotel. 

We loaded back into the taxi and took off to the next place. However, when we arrived there we found out that the lady who booked it for us at the hotel put the Vallarta Adventure information on their paperwork, but we were really suppose to be at Vallarta Adventure.

Luckily for us our taxi driver helped us out with the Spanish and understanding what went wrong and where we were suppose to be. So, we turned around and headed back to the original place we went to. It was kind of frustrating for us and our taxi driver. But, at least we were there in time to take part in our Dolphin adventure!!!

Here is a video of the experience - yes we are in the video!!! Great memories!!!!
Before our adventure we attended a class that educated us about dolphins. The spoke in Spanish and then in English - it was an interesting class and because they went back and forth in the language, you had to listen really carefully to understand it all. 

Brady, Sondra and Sharon waiting for our adventure to start!
Say cheese!
It was amazing to be in the water with Dolphins!!!! To say we were excited would be an understatement! 
There was a baby in the tank. It was a month old and we watch it swim and nurse from the mother dolphin. The babies name is Mia. It was cute, we loved watching how the baby stayed with the mother. 
Sondra getting kissed by a dolphin!!! Yea!

We had two lady dolphins in our pool. One was 9 months pregnant and was very fat. We were able to touch and pet the dolphins and I tried to see if I could feel the baby move, but couldn't. A dolphin is pregnant for 12 months and she still had 3 months to go. 
All of their dolphins are bred in captivity and don't know what it is like to be in the wild. 
Next we were able to kiss the dolphin. So sweet!
Then we took the dolphin by the fins and did a little dance. 
I love the smiles from the dolphin.
Next we put our hands under the dolphin to kind of lift / carry them. What a great smile from our dolphin!
Belly rubs were the best!
The package we purchased was the "Dolphin Swim Experience". A fun dolphin adventure with an exciting ride!
How sweet is Brady's picture getting kissed from the dolphin. 
Brady kissing back the dolphin.
Brady's little dance.
I wonder if Brady's dolphin was the pregnant one. 
Aaaaaah and belly rubs. 

Everyone dreams of swimming with dolphins. Vallarta Adventures gave us the experience to chat, cuddle, play and swim with these charming and playful creatures. 

Sharon's kiss from her dolphin. I love Sharon's smile!

Kiss that lucky dolphin. Such an awesome experience!
I think it's safe to say that Sharon is enjoying her dance with the dolphin! Both are laughing (dolphin and Sharon). 

Oh, we sure loved this experience!
This was our group! 9 people and one 7 year old girl which made it even more enjoyable. Children always are fun to watch in a new experience like this. She sure was brave!
Here is where the dolphin sang several songs for us through her blow hole. 

The program we purchased is designed for those who want the comfort of a shallow platform as well as an exciting swim encounter. From the platform we were able to get to know our dolphins up close and personal - learning all about these gentle and amazing animals. We also enjoyed a thrilling "belly ride" swim with our dolphins.
 Brady was the first to swim with the dolphin. 
 The dolphin is swimming on their back and we were on their belly.
 Lawrence swam with the dolphins when he was in Hawaii and he swam on their back and it was hard to hold on, and the tale kept hitting him. It was hard for him to keep holding on. 
 I believe our experience was easier because we swam on their belly. We were able to hold on without any problem. 
 We each road around the pool, it was a fun ride.

 Next up Sondra's ride.
 I absolutely loved it.

 I am so glad that we had this experience! It's something we won't ever forget.

 Sharon was last swimming with the dolphin. 
 Vallarta Adventure believes that it is important to have a positive impact on the environment and local communities. Their eco-adventures, dolphin programs and social programs are developed to educate and build awareness around environmental protection and to "inspire change" locally and globally. They take great pride in all of our social and environmental efforts and hope to make Mexico and the world a better place for everyone and everything. 
 Some of the ways Vallarta Adventures are inspiring change:
Sponsor animals and environmental programs for kids and local residents.

Donate to scholarships for local elementary school children.

Provide free dolphin therapies for low-income families and children of special-needs.

Oversee area re-forestation programs, beach clean-ups and roadside trash collections.

Participate in the rescue and rehabilitation of distressed whales, dolphins, turtles and marine life.

Partners with groups like PEACE, Children of the Dump, Family Development Agency, Sea World Conservation Fund, and many more for social and environmental causes.

Recycle over 90%of their garbage and compost all organic waste. 
 I love Sharon's smile here. 

 After everyone finished riding the dolphins our two ladies did a race in the pool. Carlos who lead our group was so much fun! He is in the blue uniform. 
 The dolphins also jumped in the air. 
 It was truly a unique experience full of interaction and fun water activities. 

 Each dolphin program is unique and based upon the groups, trainers and dolphins. 
 All of their programs are designed with the dolphins well being in mind. 
 Bye, Bye!


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