July 11, 2019
What a fun few days it has been in Fiji. We are currently in the scuba diving portion of our trip and having a blast. Although diving has been a new activity and can sometimes seem quite challenging, the reward has been well worth it. After our first day of diving, Campbell was grinning ear to ear because she conquered her fear and had an amazing first dive. We were so proud to see her excel in something she’d never tried before. Ansley, as our only previously certified diver, took charge and was the leader of one of our boats for the day. She helped everyone with their gear and feel comfortable underwater. Addie was a natural when it came to diving and has been a huge encouragement to those in our group that were still warming up to it. During our first dive, we saw beautiful corals, colorful fish, and many cool creatures like sea slugs and pufferfish. Liz kept us cracking up during our boat rides out to the dives, and Harper never ceased to amaze us with her determination and excitement. Charlotte even dabbed her first time underwater.
During one of our first nights, we cooked a family style dinner of pasta and veggies. Liz and Kelli kindly volunteered to chef up this delicious meal and we were all surprised with chocolate ice cream for dessert. The next morning before our dive, our group headed to the arts village down the street, where local artisans sell their products. Campbell, Allie, Liz, Addie, and Izzy bought colorfully dyed hair bands. For Moonup that night, Ella and Annabel asked the group what this trip has taught us about ourselves. Ella said this trip has made her realize she’s more independent than she thought, and Anna said she realized she can stay calm and push herself in adverse situations.The last day of diving was a wild adventure. We dove with bull sharks, nurse sharks, white tips and black tips! Anna said the dive was the coolest thing she’d ever done. While we were down there, we saw a sunken ship, beautiful fish, corals, and 10 foot sharks. Instead of being afraid, the group was ecstatic, including Harper who wanted to get as close as possible to the sharks. Allie and Izzy were nervous for sharks at first but crushed it and were thrilled. Campbell and Harper found shark teeth to remind them of this one in a lifetime experience. After the shark dive, we closed our last evening together by celebrating our amazing time together over dinner and watching a fire show. Fijian dancers invited us to join them in dancing and taught us some of their moves. We danced and sang in a circle in front of a bunch of strangers. We couldn’t stop laughing. Then we headed over to our last meal together and enjoyed cupcakes and ice cream on the house (thanks Juliet, you darlin’).We are sad that the trip is coming to a close, as we have gotten so close, but are pumped for our last day sailing!
Scarr and Will
July 7, 2019
Hey Fiji fam and friends! Quick update to share with you guys after the incredible last few days we’ve had together in Nabukelevu, a small village of around 300 people in the mountains of Fiji. After driving up the jungle mountain dirt road into our new home for the week, we were welcomed with smiling faces in the center of the village. Our time spent here has been a meaningful and fulfilling experience, as we have lived simply, dined with locals, participated in games with children, and painted the village health center.
During one of our first days in the village, we walked up to the school to play volleyball and rugby with some of the school children. Harper surprised us during volleyball with her competitive side, and Campbell became one of our star servers. The kids quickly fell in love with Izzy and Kelli as they played hand clapping games all afternoon.
After a hot and sweaty volleyball game, we went down to the river to go swimming with our new friends. Ansley, Charlotte, Anna, and Harper all went straight into the cool river. After a delicious spaghetti dinner, we were invited into the neighboring home of our new friends to play games, laugh, and learn more about the village culture. That night, Anna and Annabel were our LOD’s and asked us to describe the person sitting next to us. This gave us an opportunity to positively encourage our teammates and highlight some of their strengths and amazing qualities.
The next day we had a slow morning, starting at what locals call “Fiji time” – a term used to describe the slow way of life around the village- something Charlotte really embraced during out time here! We woke up when the roosters crowed, we ate when we were hungry, and went to sleep with the sun. After breakfast, we helped repaint the medical dispensary, a building used to house medicines and other items used for healthcare in Nambukelevu. We built and painted rock flower beds around the dispensary. Kelli was a trooper and really had a knack for painting, and was covered with paint afterwards. The afternoon was spent playing our favorite games like “big booty,” “hay barn,” and “WA.” It was an absolute joy to see the beautiful medical clinic come together over the span of several days. On our last day, we said our hard goodbyes to the many friends we made during our time in the village. One of the children from the village even gave Addie a bracelet to remember them by. After saying goodbye, we headed further down the river to begin our rafting adventure. Ansley, Harper, Izzy, Anna and Kelli all hopped in our river guide, Peta’s boat. You could hear them singing “country roads take me home” the whole way down the river. Scarr, Campbell, Annabel, and Addie were in our beloved Petero’s boat. Petero was one of our favorite rafting guides and joked with us the whole way down the river. Campbell quickly became close pals with Petero and was tossed in the river several times by him. Liz was also kept on her toes after being jokingly tossed in the river by one of our hilarious guides. We rafted the whole day stopping for a delicious chicken salad sandwich lunch, and then rafted until we reached a new village where we would stay for the night. After a long day of paddling, we got a well-deserved rest and hit the river again for a day of paddling, but this time in single person duckie kayaks. Scarr, Allie, and Kelli bonded while they were sharing stories and paddling down the river. After stopping for lunch, we hiked up to a beautiful large waterfall where we played in the water and sat in awe at the beauty. After paddling out of the river, we headed to our next destination in pacific harbor. We laid in the sun, treated ourselves to hot showers, and walked to the arts village where we were rewarded with pizza.
This morning we began our first pool dive, where Ella was ecstatic because she was finally able to equalize. We can’t wait to see what the next adventure has in store for our group.
Bula for now,
Will and Scarr
July 2, 2019
Bula friends and family!
On Saturday, our group of 12 awesome girls arrived to Fiji! The girls arrived full of excitement and had already gotten to know each other from the long airplane ride. We then hit the road for our first destination. As soon as the group got to the beach, Liz, Anna, Ansley, Ella, Addie and Harper took the kayaks out for an afternoon paddle. Addie, Kelli, Anna, and Allie got their hair braided, and Campbell learned how to weave a whistle out of palm leaves. We closed the evening by playing a game of mafia and our new favorite game big booty.
On our first day at the beach, Charlotte and Addie were our LOD’s. They got the group together early in the morning and got them pumped for surfing. Our group had early morning surf lessons where we got to ride the waves while watching the sun rise. The group had an amazing time and everyone was up and riding on a wave in no time with the help of our hilarious instructors. Harper, Charlotte, and Annabelle were naturals and didn’t miss a single wave. Later that day, the group took the word adventure to a new level. We hopped on a boat and headed out to a local reef to go snorkeling. Although a few of us were hesitant at first, every person in the group was giddy when we saw our first sharks. The sharks below us peacefully swam and did not pay us any attention while we observed them. We saw several white and black tip sharks as well as beautiful fish and corals. Kelli, Izzy, and Ella were nervous to see sharks at first but later remarked that they still couldn’t believe they got to snorkel with sharks in Fiji. Harper and Liz conquered their fear are now pumped up for scuba diving. The weather was sunny and warm during our snorkel but as soon as we reached the shore back at the beach house it started pouring rain. The weather was a perfect way to spend the afternoon. We decided to embrace the rain and play volleyball which was hilarious watching people slipping and sliding in the puddles. Allie beat Will in ping pong, many of us played cards, got to know each other better, and had way too much pizza for dinner.
Our second day at the beach house started off the same way with a sunrise surf. Everyone was amazed at the beautiful and colorful sunrise we witnessed come over the top of the mountains while we were in the water. It was awesome to watch the group feel more comfortable with their surf boards and improve the skills they learned the previous day. Anna loved surfing so much that she was the first one out on the water, and the last one out. After surfing and breakfast, we went for a boat ride to an remote island where we picnicked, snorkeled, and soaked up the sun. The group played a game of volleyball after lunch where Liz and Annabel showed us their skills. Later that day, everyone bonded as a group by telling stories, laughing in the sun, and swimming in the ocean. Ella and Harper, who have quickly become great friends, were the Leaders of the Day (LOD’s) and led the group in a Moonup discussion where the group shared things about themselves. We learned that Ella and Allie love to dance, and Annabel can sing. Our Moonup and goodnight hugs closed the last night of our stay at the beach house. We have quickly become close friends and we are already confident that this all girls group (and Will) will be something incredibly special.
This morning, we were full of anticipation and excitement as we hopped on our open-air safari bus to begin the next adventure in the village of Nambukelevu. We cannot wait to see what the next few days have in store for us in the village.
Bula, Scarr and Will
And for some shoutouts…
Addie- Love you and happy birthday mom! Love and miss you all! I’m having so much fun!
Ella- thank you for sending me on this trip!! Love you and D so much!
Harper – Hey mom and dad (and aj) love you guys! Don’t worry mom I’m making tons friends and having the best time 🙂 I loved surfing and the kids! Having the best time, love and miss y’all!
Campbell – hug boo for me (plz clip his nails before I come home) love you!!
Kelli- Hey guys! I’m having a great time! Love y’all!
Ansley – I’m having so much fun!
Annabel- Hey family I miss y’all but I don’t want to leave! Hug Oakley for me.
Anna – HEY FAMILY AND FRIENDS!!!! I’m having the BEST time ever in Fiji!! I love and miss you guys!! Pet Petey for me!!
Liz- I have a lot of bug bites, but I love the trip and the people!!
Allie-Hey guys!! I hope y’all are having a fun time in Sweden, I am having an awesome time too. Peace out
Charlotte- Love and miss you mom and dad but having a really cool experience here in Fiji!️
Izzy:miss you guys but I am having lots of fun so I don’t really miss you! But milo I miss you a lot
June 28, 2019
Hello Fiji families!
This enthusiastic group has arrived safely in Nadi, Fiji, and have met up with their Moondance leaders to head back to their hotel for some rest and breakfast. We can’t wait to hear more about their surfing adventures soon!