Day 3 of our vacation- by Greg Reinhart.


Today we took a tour outside of the resort. We headed out at about 10 AM to go to the Don Lucas cigar factory. It’s a very small cigar producer but the area they have not only cigars but also chocolate, coffee, rum and a pretty awesome store.


The cigars they produce a very good – our tour guide (Who could’ve been Francis Chan’s twin brother) promptly gave us two free cigars. And Candace jumped into be a guest torcedor- she bunched and bound a cigar that was then wrapped and given to us to take home. Can’t wait to try it😊. The store also had a huge humidor, with plenty of Cuban selections. We got a box of Bolivia’s to go along with the box of Don Lucas’.

Later in the evening we headed to Mercure, a French restaurant. The food was really good, and the portions were just right – Enough to satisfy but not enough to make you feel uncomfortable.



Something I forgot. We started off the day by getting up early to watch a Caribbean sunrise. We were on the beach by about 5:50 AM. There’s a ton of seaweed here for some reason – they even have a special tractor-pulled machine to clean it off the beach each morning. There were a lot of clouds on the horizon but it was still a beautiful sunrise. It felt great standing in the water (and extremely soft sand) with Candace watching the sky light up.



Day 2 of our vacation- by Greg Reinhart.


Planes work!! Everything about today’s flight went awesome. We breezed through security, had time to catch a bite, and took off on time. No turbulence, and only minor kicks from the toddler seated behind us.

Landing in Punta Cana was eye-opening for me and familiar for Candace- she said that the landscape and buildings are a lot like Trinidad.

We also breeze through the DR airport, found our resort transfer quickly and we were on our way to Secrets Royal Beach. From the initial greeting of our driver to hotel check-in to on beach waiters, all were extremely helpful, friendly and courteous.

This place is awesome. The room is big and the bathroom is super cool. And our patio, WOW! Because we’re at the end of the building, our patio is huge- it’s L-shaped, with a soaker tub… such a great place to sit and enjoy the tropical breeze-and smoke a Fuente, which I did…

We spent our day exploring the resort and doing what we do best, hanging out with each other. Dinner was supposed to be at the Hibachi grill, but they lost our reservation. Oh well, dinner was still great at the buffet restaurant. Tons of great and unique choices.

For tomorrow- plans for a tour of a local cigar and coffee factory, hanging at the pool, and spending time with my lovely Candace. Can’t wait.


Day 1 of our vacation- by Greg Reinhart. (Guest blogger and my handsome husband)


So excited – alarm goes off at 3:45am. No snooze’s. Up right away. Bags are already packed – just need to get dressed and take care of the last minute items.

4:30am and we’re off. Candace and I are headed to Philly and then to the DR for some much anticipated one-on-one time. First stop- parking. The GPS missed the airport but brought us right to a private parking lot with shuttle service. Not bad…

All the check-in formalities went very well, we even had time to grab some breakfast. Then came bad news #1- flight delayed. No big deal, just two hours. More time to sit with my beautiful wife…

We both love to read, so many books were packed (about 4 each) and one more was purchased at the airport store. Problem is, if you want to call it a problem, that we like to talk to each other even more than we like to read. We love both chit-chat and deep conversation. We’re always picking each other’s brain- seeing what makes each other tick and, maybe just as importantly, figuring out what makes ourselves tick.

Then comes bad news #2- our plane needs a new tire. Shouldn’t be a big deal, only adds another hour or so to our wait. Again, this just gives us some more time to sit and enjoy each other. I really love my wife- did I mention that already?

We’re technically on vacation, so we’re both in relax-mode and are both so happy to be spending time together that another delay is no big deal. We’ll be in Punta Cana soon enough, but for now we still get to enjoy each other’s conversation and presence.

Just as we’re revving ourselves up for boarding #3, we get bad news #3- flight cancelled. No other flights available till tomorrow morning. In stride, like always, we work together to call the airline, call AAA, get re-booked and nail down all the particulars that will be needed for tomorrow and the rest of the week. We’re a great team. Calm, cool, thoughtful and thorough. The best part, of course, is that we do it all together.

To some, a first day of vacation like this would ruin their week. For us- it was our first day of vacation. This week is about spending time with each other, loving each other- and that’s exactly what we did. I’m looking forward to doing just that again tomorrow, and every day.