The Caye Boy Books: Raising Barefoot Kids on A Small Island in Belize…Could You Do It?

Last week I received a call from Tropic Air‘s Cargo Department.   “Is this the San Pedro Scoop?”   Yes…yes it is.  (I’ve grown accustomed to being called “Scoop” by many residents of this town…)   “We have a package for you.”

How mysterious…how excellent.  And when I went to go pick up the envelope,  the return address:  Brad, Little Blue House, Caye Caulker, didn’t provide too much in the way of information.

I opened up the package to find two childrens’ books and a note/press release.

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SUPER cute books.  Ones that I have seen in a few resorts around Belize but never picked up.  Now I have my very own copies.  Books about island life, spending the day barefoot and the independence and ingenuity of kids when they are living in a safe environment.

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Makes me think back fondly of summer days in suburban NJ when you were sent outside after lunch and told to come home for dinner…and then it was straight outside again.

The books talk about island life…tour guides, snorkeling with the fish, teasing about tourists – they “smell like sunscreen and ALWAYS ask a million questions” and will make you wish you were here.   I’m not sure why I haven’t brought these books home to my nephews already.

The illustrations are absolutely gorgeous.  And kids would so love identifying the crab that is hidden on each page.

On this page, they are not so hidden.

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ANYWAY…I was intrigued and sent Brad at the Little Blue House an email…hoping I could meet his wife, the author, and their kids.

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Jessie, the author, and her fam live right in the heart of Caye Caulker village right under a giant breadfruit tree.  She first visited about 15 years ago and moved here full time 7 years ago.  Both of her children, Atticus (age 4) and Getty (age 6), were born in Belize and live the island life.

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Though their names have been changed to Gilford and Alvis in the book…

Jessie is originally from Indiana and now is an author and a yoga teacher.  By donation 🙂

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I asked Jessie a few questions about living in Belize.  I get TONS of them about relocating with children here…and since my children are cats (yes…I am crazy like that), it’s hard to answer.  Good to get my hands on a real life mother.

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The books talk about the amazing things that kids on Caye Caulker can experience…the ocean, the wildlife, the freedom to explore…what else do you love about raising kids on the caye?

 

I love that they can feel very safe and independent. I love that they can play outdoors nearly every day of the year, and feel very connected to their environment. I especially love that their island experience reminds me very much of my small-town upbringing—but instead of playing in barns and on haybales, they climb coconut trees and snorkel!

Are there any big challenges raising boys on Caye Caulker?

Ha, sand in beds! Really, that is about it.

What advice would you give to anyone considering moving to Belize with small children?

I would recommend living here for at least a year prior to committing fully—this is all I have known in regards to raising children, and of course it is all my children have known…but I can imagine that it may take some adjustment for anyone moving here in the middle of raising their children.

Back to me:  That’s the same advice I would give anyone…kids or not!

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So….if you’ve been to Belize…or are thinking about it…and you have young children or just know some.  If you are looking for super cute baby shower gifts for your friend that loves to travel, TOTALLY check out these books.   They are available on Amazon and in shops and resorts around Belize.

I’m not just saying this because I got freebies.  These books are SUPER cute and I can’t wait to read them with Nate, Tommy and Will.  See you guys soon!

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  • Simply adorable!

  • Bonnie MamaNature Russell

    Great story! Cute kids 🙂
    Coming from New Jersey myself, I have to agree that living in Belize really is like stepping back in time to a friendly way of life.

    • Andrew Young

      I am the artist! Part of the deal is we come to Belize and stay for a week to take it all in. Since Jes and Brad live there full time its great to meet up and draw what we see happening right there on the Caye. Thanks for your support!

  • Just purchased both books for my nieces. Thanks!

    • Belize Blog

      Oh good. I know you will like them.

    • Andrew Young

      I am the artist! Thank you!

  • lifeagain

    Scoop! you got to hang out in your house UNTIL after lunch. In my part of South Jersey we were kicked out of the house after breakfast or as soon as our chores were done. We never came back home until dinner time and if you were lucky to have Italians in the group you just went to their house or family store or restaurant. Philadelphia and South Jersey was the best place for growing up…..man was life good.

    • Belize Blog

      Ha. South Jersey…or Caye Caulker. I know what I’d choose! There were cartoons to watch in the morning!