Saturday, February 18, 2012

Fun in the Sun!

We just got back from 10 days in Florida and our attempt to find a little extra February sunshine. It wasn't as warm as we'd expected, but we did see lots of sun and a lot of friends as well. The day we left Seattle, of course, it was sunny and mild. In fact it was so clear, our pilot went out of his way to show off Mount Rainier ~ lots of snow up there!

On our first day, we drove from Orlando to Lakeland to see our friend Mary Jo, who left Seattle to be closer to one of her sons. She used to sing in choir with us and housesat for us often when we traveled. We miss her a lot! (And boy, does the humidity do a number on one's hair. Yikes!)

That night we enjoyed a lovely sunset on St. Pete's Beach. We also had fun bird watching the next morning before we headed to Bonita Springs to visit Dick's high school friends, the Matthews.

After a fun evening with Dave and Barbara, we drove even further south to Naples where we spent several days with my sister and her husband

We had fun strolling around Naples, both the shopping area and the beach. The roots of the banyon trees are so interesting and make great hiding places.

These poinsettias were happily blooming OUTSIDE!

The place where Jane and Ted were staying was right across the street from an adult literacy program. I didn't get to go inside, but Dick took this photo for old times' sake.

In no time at all it was time for us to begin our trek back to Orlando, but first we stopped in Sarasota to see our cousin Bambi and her husband. We spent several hours reminiscing about our family, especially Uncle Howie, who passed away on the 8th at the age of 93. He will be missed! Aunt Phyllis is now the only one left of that generation.

After bidding Jane and Ted and Dwight and Bambi farewell, we headed back to St. Pete's Beach instead of Miami because the weather report was better there. We took a couple of long walks on the beach before returning to Orlando.

That pink building in the distance is a very old hotel and a well-known landmark.

Somehow Dick managed to catch all my favorite beach birds in this one photo. I just love those terns who surely must spend hours arranging their feathers! (We also visited the Corkscrew Sanctuary with Jane and Ted, but I'm saving that for another post.)

Before returning to Seattle, we also spent an afternoon and evening with my blogging friend Dee and her husband Steve. We had such a great time though that we failed to take any pictures. We met Dee at her favorite yarnshop (Sip and Knit) before driving a long ways to Dee's house and a fun evening with her and Steve at a local barbecue spot. Check out Dee's blog to see what she surprised me with.

After spending several hours in the Chicago airport on the way home with these three, we hopped another plane back to Seattle and you guessed it, RAIN!


hakucho said...

Oh, so you were the one who met up with Dee. I didn't put it together when I read her post! Looks like you had an awesome trip and it must have been nice to see your kiddos on the way home :)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures.

The pink hotel is the Don Cesar, I think.

I love those sea gulls too. They are all over Daytona this time of year and the males think they are "all that" and more while the females give them the cold shoulder. It's a very funny dance to watch.

Glad you made it home safe and sound.

Kathy A. said...

That looks like such a fun vacation Judy. Glad you had some sun and fun.
Love the photo of your and those gorgeous grandchildren!

Becca said...

Looks like a great time! Enjoyed the photos and a great shot of mt rainer!

Charlene ♥ SC said...

Such a lovely trip, and that's the best layover ever; right?

gocrazywithme said...

Sounds like a great trip, Judy, especially the part spent at the airport in Chicago!

Susan said...

Judy, what a wonderful vacation! It all looks lovely. There was a teacher from Naples who always did my poetry project until she retired. I still miss her students! I'm so glad you had this chance to visit so many wonderful friends. Yeah, the humidity is one of the things that would keep me out of Florida. I was in Jax in Dec. and it was nice, but not sunny most of the time.

SusanB-knits said...

Beautiful pictures! It looks like a wonderful vacation.

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

LOVE that last photo!! ;)