stranded in paradise.

 A while back my friend Meggan suggested that I start titling my travel blog posts ‘stranded in insert current travel location here‘.  Some of you may not get the joke if you don’t realize that our last name is Strand.  Get it?  Strand-ed?

Well, little did I know that a title of that sort would be especially apropos for our latest trip.

But let’s start at the beginning of the story, shall we?

Last week Mr. Q and I were practicing ‘safe social media’.  In other words, we went out of town but decided maybe it was smarter to not announce that to the entire world via things like my blog, Instagram and Facebook.  I hope you guys will allow me a little subterfuge in this regard.

Anyway, we went to Punta Cana!

We really needed a relaxing vacation that didn’t involve expending a lot of energy.  We’d debated just doing a stay-cation, but the reality is that I can’t just unwind at home.   I’m always looking at all of the stuff that needs to be done and then I feel guilty not tackling it.  I really have a hard time not picking up a paint brush when I have a few extra hours at home.

So we decided to book a week at the beach.  I’d been told that Punta Cana has some of the most beautiful beaches, so we found a reasonably priced resort and booked a week long getaway.

The most energetic thing we did all week was get up just after sunrise each morning for a walk on the beach.

It was perfectly gorgeous.

Next we went to the coffee shop at our resort, conveniently named “Mike’s Coffee Shop” (Mr. Q’s name is Mike, in case you didn’t know) where we had pastries and fabulous coffee.

We managed all of this before 8 a.m. and practically had the entire place to ourselves at that hour.  Our only daily companion for coffee was this guy …

He’d just stand there about 5′ away mostly motionless.  I’m sure he was hoping for some scraps to be thrown his way.

I joked with Mr. Q that we were doing ‘rope drop’ at our resort.  Any other Disney park fans out there?  If so, you know all about rope drop.  It’s getting to the park before it opens so that you’re there as soon as the rope drops to let people in.  It’s one of the best ways to get on a few rides before the lines get too long and the crowds become unmanageable.

Well, FYI, it works at resorts on the beach too.

After breakfast we’d head for the beach where my view mostly looked like this …

and occasionally like this …

LOL, that’s looking straight up at the palapa  that we sat under to protect our fair Minnesota skin from the blazing Dominican sunshine.  We went through 4 cans of spray on sunscreen!

We’d periodically get up and go for a swim to cool off, or head to the bar for another drink, but mostly we just enjoyed some serious R&R.

The resort we stayed at, Ocean Blue & Sand, was pretty.  The grounds were immaculately maintained.  Our room was spacious and clean.  But the main thing that stood out for me was the staff.  Everyone we dealt with was so friendly and welcoming.  Despite the fact that Mr. Q and I couldn’t really understand any of their Spanish beyond a few basic words and phrases, their smiling faces spoke volumes.

I have to be honest though, aside from those pastries at the coffee shop, the food was not great (it was all-inclusive) and for that reason we probably would not return to this particular resort.  By the end of the trip our motto was ‘stick with the chicken’ because it was the only thing that was any good.

We’d certainly return to Punta Cana itself though!

I have to admit, seven days of relaxing was more than enough for both of us.  By the last day we were ready to come home and get back into our normal routines.  I was especially looking forward to getting some furniture painted over the remainder of the holiday weekend.  But remember when I said ‘stranded in paradise’ was a good title for this blog post?

Well … yep, we got stranded.

Our return flight was supposed to leave at 5 pm on Saturday.  We got to the airport by about 3 pm and made our way to our gate.

By the way, the airport in Punta Cana is really lovely.

That was a lucky thing since we ended up spending a fair amount of time there.

First we heard that our flight was delayed until 6:30 pm.  Then we heard 8 pm.  And then, it was rescheduled to 9 am on Sunday!  I had visions of trying to sleep on uncomfortable airport benches.

But it was a Sun Country flight, and I have to say they did an amazing job of taking care of us.  They loaded everyone onto a bus and put us all up at an all-inclusive resort for the night free of charge.  The resort they just happened to choose?  Ocean Blue & Sand!  Ha, seriously, what are the chances?  This was not a package vacation, we had booked our resort and flights separately and no one else on the plane had stayed at Ocean Blue so it was purely a coincidence.  Off we went back to our resort for one more night!

Even though we were really looking forward to getting home, we can’t really complain about being stranded in paradise for one extra night.

In the morning Sun Country bused us all back to the airport and our flight actually took off a few minutes early.  I guess when all of your passengers are arriving together it’s easy to make sure everyone is on board and ready to go on time!

So we returned home yesterday afternoon.  I’m all rejuvenated and read to get to work on some more furniture projects.

Oh, but wait, I almost forgot.  All of that extra time in the airport gave me a chance to stick with my travel giveaway tradition.  For those who aren’t familiar, after each of my last several trips I’ve brought back some foreign decorating magazines to giveaway.  This time I only found one, and comically enough it is seriously outdated which I didn’t notice until after I bought it.  And of course, it’s in Spanish.

I’m going to throw in a few Prima Marketing products as well.  I just happen to have a few extras.

Today’s prize includes:  the Micasa magazine, a Ruby Rose transfer, a stencil brush (which also works great as a wax brush), 3 jars of chalk paste and 3 decor waxes.

The basic rules:  to be eligible to win today’s prize leave a comment of any kind on this blog post.  Your comment must be left on the blog, not on Facebook or Instagram.  You are not required to follow my blog, although it would be awesome if you did!

Normally I make a point of answering every comment left on my blog.  If someone takes the time to leave a comment, I like to acknowledge that.  I usually only get 10 to 20 comments so it’s easy to fulfill that promise.  But I suspect I’ll get a few more comments on this post so I’m going to warn you up front that I may not be able to answer each one, so I hope you guys will cut me some slack on that this week.

I will randomly draw the name of a winner for today’s prize from all of the comments left on this post by Friday, May 31, 2019 at the stroke of midnight (U.S. Central time).

The fine print: no purchase necessary, you must be 18 years of age or older to win, void where prohibited by law, the number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning, approximate retail value of prize is $110, if the prize is not claimed by Sunday, June 2, another name will be drawn at random to win, blah, blah, blah.

Good luck!


92 thoughts on “stranded in paradise.

  1. Love your postings both about travel, and furniture….everything you paint is amazing! Would love to win your give away, but even if not I will keep coming back for the travel, and the furniture…..

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hello! I found your website from a post you left on Miss Mustard Seed’s Facebook page and after reading a few of your blog posts, I realized I live just a ‘hop, skip, and a jump’ from you. I drive past your house occasionally on my way to North St. Paul and I stopped once for one of your sales. Small world! : ) Anyway, love, love, love your painted furniture and enjoy reading your blog. Thank you for sharing your expertise.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Relaxing in the sun sounds wonderful!
    We’ve tried a staycation and agree that it’s too hard not to work on all the home projects.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My husband and I try to do this type of vacation every year at the end of winter here in MA! I highly recommend it! The biggest decision is what to have for dinner. Glad you made time to relax!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I just did 9 days in Paris and it was exhausting. The last day they went on yet another tour and I stayed back at the hotel to just relax. After I saw the pictures, I wish I would have sucked it up and went.
    A vacation just to relax sounds wonderful although the delay would have freaked me out a bit. Glad it worked out for you.


    1. I know just how you feel Mary. I’ve been known to pass things up while on vacation because I’m too tired, and I always later wish that I had just done it! You can always sleep when you get home again 😉


  6. I can relate to “stranded in paradise”! We took a cruise in Feb. and found ourselves stranded on a cruise ship. Our ship had engine trouble and we missed all our ports of call and were diverted to Puerto Rico for a pit stop before returning to Port Canaveral. All things considered, we had a great time! Glad you had a good time on your trip!


    1. Wowza, you missed all of your ports?! What a bummer. We’ve had a few cruise mishaps here and there too. We were stranded in Corisca once while our ship waited for repairs, which doesn’t sound so bad except it was a Sunday and absolutely everything was closed.


  7. I love looking at all the pieces that you make over. They always inspire me to try colors I wouldn’t have tried before, as well as the transfers you use. I’m a beginner with big visions of what is possible. Let’s just hope I can follow through.
    PS: I could go for a couple of days in a place like the pictures above. Just looking at them is relaxing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I follow you on Instagram, but now I am going to follow your blog. I am always looking for new ideas with furniture and now give me knew ideas on travel. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I have been following you on Instagram and now I will be following your blog. I love all of the painting of furniture and then your travel destinations. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. We stayed at Ocean Blue & Sand in 2015. You’re right, their food was not good but an escape from MN weather was worth it.
    I love your blog, you’ve encouraged me to try new products.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Life’s a gift ….you never know whats being given to you until you look inside. And sometimes it’s regifted!
    Love your life stories!😃

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I just recently found you (I’m not even sure where anymore) and I really enjoy your blog! The vacation looks lovely! I don’t get a chance to read many blogs anymore, especially with the weather being nice and I’m mostly outside when not at work, but yours is a new favorite. I’m on your email list! (when I have time to read)


  13. I love the transfers and they just are so much fun to use on different things! I have not tried the wax paste, so that would be a new adventure. But, I am sure I can go and find ways to use it since you always have fun and creative ways to make things work!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Good for you for taking a warm and relaxing break! Your pictures are fabulous…I have to now put the Dominican Republic on my bucket list. Thanks so much for all that you share, Linda!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I wish we had great yard sales on the West Coast like you do in the Midwest and the East. Never would I find anything as cool as the things you find. Usually it’s old Walmart or Sears cast offs, or if anything is worth seriously looking at the seller knows and prices it out of the realm of being an investment item.


    1. I know exactly what you mean Marilee. I’ve checked out the sales at my mom’s house in Vegas and they are pretty sad. Lot’s of 80’s and 90’s stuff. Nothing truly vintage.


  16. Just read your blog “pigs”…..that truck is SOOOO cute. I would have never thought about it the way you did!!! And I consider myself pretty crafty…LOL!! The DR is beautiful!!! And very very humid, at least when I was there…..I just moved to MN, White Bear Lake area,Maybe I will run into you over in Stillwater!!! Glad you made it home safely!!!


    1. LOL, yes, it definitely was humid. My hair was a giant puff ball the entire time we were there. I’d forgotten just how terribly my hair behaves in humid conditions 😉 Welcome to MN. You’re not far from me at all in WBL!


  17. Yep I agree w all the comments. I especially say thanks for showing and explaining in great detail your processes and learning experiences. Always inspiring! And the travel blogs let us all share in your amazing trips. Now back to work and painting. We’re all waiting for the next project.


  18. Beach looks beautiful. I am a homebody myself. Never traveled, lol! Been a follower of your blog for quite sometime.


  19. Your vacation photos are phenomenal as always. I’m so jealous! Thank you for sharing your life an trips with us and thank you for the chance to win some goodies!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.