Being Part of Something Grand at Beaches Resorts #BeachesMoms

sandals foundation

Being able to attend a social media conference out of the country at an all-inclusive resort like Beaches Resorts was a dream come true. But you know what was even better than all that? This one thing and I wish I could have been a bigger part of it – The Sandals Foundation. The Sandals Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Sandals Resorts International. Their promise encompasses goals in three key areas – Education, Community and Environment.

Before attending the conference we were informed of the opportunity we had to pack for a purpose and that purpose was to be part of the generosity of the Sandals Foundation. We voluntarily packed backpacks with school supplies for the children in the Caribbean and presented them at one of our breakfast gatherings at Le Petit Chateau.

sandals foundation

ONE HUNDRED PERCENT

All administrative and management costs associated with the Sandals Foundation are supported by Sandals Resorts International.

When you make a monetary donation, service or in-kind donation to the Sandals Foundation 100% of your contribution goes directly to the people they support in the Caribbean – to fulfilling their promise.

Education is one major area in which the Sandals Foundation focuses. They know the power of education and that the children are the future.

The Beaches Moms group brought backpack upon backpack and suitcase upon suitcase full of school supplies and I’ll bet you anything we all wished we could have packed more.

And when these two beautiful young girls sang a portion of the song, “We are the World”, I can tell you, I wasn’t the only one wiping away tears.

students

Like I said, while being on a tropical island as beautiful as Turks and Caicos is, it’s the people, the opportunity to do  good and to help children and the community in which they live that truly touched my heart at this conference.

image001

You can be a change agent. I’d like to invite you to Like the Sandals Foundation on Facebook, Follow @SandalsFdn on Twitter & Instagram and visit them online at www.sandalsfoundation.org. Join them in helping to make the Caribbean a better place.

 I paid a fee to attend the Social Media on the Sand conference and was provided with discount rates to do so. I was not asked nor am I required to write about my experiences.

© 2014, Nanette Gomez. All rights reserved.

Dining at Beaches Resorts with Food Allergies #BeachesMoms

barefootbythesea

As with any other travel destination, I run into the subject of food allergies. Will it be handled right? Will it be difficult to get what I need? Will the chef’s and staff even know what I’m talking about? All these questions pop into my head. And heading out of the country to Turks and Caicos was no different.

Fortunately though, I was able to find something I could eat at all the restaurants I ate at. There are 19 restaurants at Beaches Turk and Caicos Resort Villages and Spa so I had plenty to choose from. I didn’t get to all of them. It would have taken me more than the 4 days I had, even if that’s all I did was eat.

breakfast fruit

A lot of the meals included fruits, vegetables, fish, chicken and beef so I had no trouble finding something to eat. Even later in the evening and yes for some reason I got hungry late at night, I was able to order a bunless burger and some fries and I was fine.

lunch

As always it’s best to make your dietary restrictions known not just to the staff – i.e. waiter, waitress, chef, etc. at your chosen restaurant, but take advantage of the Culinary Concierge desk as well.

While there were plenty of delicious desserts around the resort, I pretty much stayed away from them by choice but I did opt to ask at one or two of the restaurants.

My favorite spot to eat was Barefoot by the Sea for obvious reasons it’s name fits it very well.

barefootbythesea

I loved sitting outdoors with my feet in the cool, soft sand, while watching the mesmerizing blue waters as I enjoyed my meal. I opted for a salad so I could indulge in a delicious serving of creme brulee. Yay for dessert!

creme brule

My friends however opted for something a bit more island fare.

friends

It looked really good but I just couldn’t get past the baby octopus. I don’t think either of them did either.

crawfish,mussels,octopus

And not to be outdone by my dessert, the creme brulee pictured above, they opted for one too.

chocolate ice cream topping

That is just one more thing there is no shortage of at Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages and Spa, there are plenty of restaurants whether you are looking for healthier food options, picky eaters, burgers or ice cream! Ok, that last one isn’t a meal option, but hey if you are on vacation you can totally make that call yourself.

I paid a fee to attend the Social Media on the Sand conference as you would any other conference. I did receive a discounted rates from Beaches Resorts in Turks and Caicos for my stay. Thank you to BSMMedia , Beaches Resorts and all the conference sponsors who made Social Media on the Sand possible.

© 2014, Nanette Gomez. All rights reserved.

Camp Sesame: Fun with Bert and Ernie #BeachesMoms

camp sesame at beaches resorts turks and caicos

One of the things I loved about Beaches Resorts in Turks and Caicos was this. It’s where kids can have fun and parents can know their children are safe on their own. And there is so much to do.

camp sesame at beaches resorts turks and caicos

No, I’m not little enough to join Camp Sesame but I did get to try it out and it was so much fun.

Once we entered Camp Sesame, I was taken back to the days of watching Bert and Ernie on Sesame Street. Oh what a flood of childhood memories came rushing back to me.

bert and ernie joining in on the fun at camp sesame

They joined us and together we created a sock puppet. They were quite good at puppet making. I think they’ve had a little practice.

Bert helping make a puppet at camp sesame

We finished up our group puppet and headed over to our own little table and chairs to create our own puppets while Bert and Ernie took a little break.

sockpuppet

Once we completed our puppets, Bert and Ernie joined us again and we got to tell them a little bit about our new friend. We had so much fun sharing our stories and hi-fiveing them both since we did such a great job. Oh just keep in mind if your puppet is still on your hand, use your other hand to hi-five with. I forgot and poor Pierre (that was my puppets name) got it right in the kisser. Ooops! At least it made us all (including Bert and Ernie) laugh.

We ended our session with us, our puppets and Bert and Ernie singing our rendition of the Itsy Bitsy Spider. There’s a video out there somewhere of it I just hope it doesn’t turn up online.

Seriously, if I had this much fun, I can only imagine how much fun your little one would have. Your kids could spend the whole morning just hanging out and having fun with their Sesame Street friends. There were lots of activities scheduled as you can see:

Camp Sesame at Beaches Resorts Turks and Caicos

I wish I were little enough to spend the whole morning with the Sesame Street pals. Fun, fun, fun! Honestly who wouldn’t love to bake with Cookie Monster? (I spy Bert and Ernie, do you?)

bake with cookie monster

Bye-bye Cookie Monster until we meet again!

bye-bye_cookie_monster

I paid a fee to attend the Social Media on the Sand conference as you would any other conference. I did receive a discounted rates from Beaches Resorts in Turks and Caicos for my stay. Thank you to BSMMedia , Beaches Resorts and all the conference sponsors who made Social Media on the Sand possible.

© 2014, Nanette Gomez. All rights reserved.