Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Fun in the Sun!

We spent last week in Florida. I am having a hard time coming back to reality. It was everything we wanted it to be-- relaxing, fun, and warm. Well, it was warm-ER at least. Turns out the polar vortex brought about the coldest Florida temps since the 1800s, but even so... it was still much warmer than home.

Derek hasn't had a week off work for almost five years and he was in much need of a vacation! This trip was our first solo vacation since our honeymoon seven and a half years ago! We didn't purposefully pick our destination because it was where we honeymooned, but it was really fun to go back! When we were searching for warm places to visit, I stumbled across a magazine article for our hotel and my heart was set.

We stayed at The Post Card Inn on St. Pete Beach. I mean, how neat is this place? We've stayed in fancier hotels before, but I wanted to go somewhere with charm and character and it's exactly what we got! The rooms are all unique (ours was like the top left pic) and we were literally just steps from the beach. The decor was mismatched, but yet it all fit so perfectly. And in the lobby (bottom right picture) has a bookshelf wall full of neat books to browse. The only downside is that we traveled during the off season and so the hotel was doing renovations, but so was every other place.

All pics from Post Card Inn website. I forgot my camera, so we only have pics from our cell phone!

So, what'd we do? Basically-- not much. It was fantastic. We didn't plan a thing and so we just did things on a whim, which is a huge difference from family life! That was a vacation in and of itself. It was nice to have a week together as just husband and wife. Also, we realized we are 29 going on AARP.  Here is the 2014 version of a slideshow after a vacation (i.e. a really long blog post with lots of pictures.)... (who am I kidding? I've never seen a non-computer slideshow in my life).

There are no pictures of our ridiculously stressful journey to get to Florida. Our original flight was one of the thousands of cancelled flights across the country with the earliest reschedule was a full 24 hours later. We desperately didn't want to sacrifice an entire day of vacation! I attempted to call the airline and I wasn't put on hold-- I was told to hang up and call another time. We showed up at the airport at noon with high hopes to get on a 12:50 flight to Orlando and we barely made it. Derek and I ventured into the airline managers office as he called corporate to get us on board and we made it with literally minutes to spare. We were a small chunk of change poorer and I have several more grey hairs, but I don't regret it. We got to our hotel right on schedule!

Ahh.... Florida.... 

The first day at the beach was a part of the coldest-temperatures-of-the-century in Florida, but it was still so much warmer than home.

And the sunset was still beautiful!

Our mornings were really lazy. When we didn't stay in bed until noon we went out for breakfast, we actually sat and read the newspaper. It was kind of nice, actually. Especially when we visited a diner. Like, a teeny tiny trailer that is smaller than our house.

Which led to me completely my very first crossword puzzle!!! I have become slightly addicted. One night Derek asked what I wanted to do and I replied, "I still need to complete today's crossword!" So we watched some TV and I worked on my puzzle and I realized how much I really am just like my grandma! 

I am not a real big seafood person, but I did get a Grouper sandwich one night. It was okay, aside the fact that it tasted like fish. :) It helps that it was fried. Also, this was the snack portion and I didn't get anywhere close to finishing!

Most nights, we ventured out for desserts... something we hardly ever do! YUM!

We played Phase 10 a few times throughout the week.

Derek and I love to play mini-golf. We tied. That was anti-climactic... I mean, who gets bragging rights?

The restaurant in our hotel claimed to have the best BBQ in town and featured Kansas City BBQ ribs on the menu. Of course we had to try. They were pretty good, though definitely not as good as the real thing.

My very favorite night was the night we watched the sunset as we walked the beach. It was beautiful to watch and the weather was fantastic! 

Isn't this GORGEOUS???

We ate dinner at a open air patio right on the beach. It was wonderful!

When we visited St. Pete beach on our honeymoon, we took a pic of us with "just married" in the sand. (It's hard to see, but it's there!). On Friday morning, we found the exact same spot for an updated photo! Still married! :)

What can we tell from the photo? The tide is higher in the summer months. Also, we were a lot thinner and less pale back in those days. It's amazing how much "life" fits in between those two photos-- two kids, remodeling a house, joining the army, grad school and so much more! We look forward to going again to get another picture, and another, and another! :)


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