Sunday, April 01, 2007

Our trip to Florida!

All four of us are back from our trip to Florida, alive and in one piece!! Miracles *do* happen :-)

We had a fantastic time and really needed the break. We stayed with my mom and dad (Nana and Grandad) at a condo they had rented for the month of March. It was absolutely beautiful, RIGHT on the ocean on Redington Beach near St. Petersburg. It's so peaceful to wake up every morning to the lulling sounds of crashing waves and rippling water . . . and that salt sea air smells so good. It was just like being back home in Nova Scotia, except, much, much warmer and sunny every single day!

The weather was fab - 85 degrees or so literally every day. For a pathetic family from Ottawa, this is extremely warm weather for this time of year. When we left it was snowing and there was ice everywhere. Shorts and sandals were certainly what the doctor ordered!

The boys were excellent on our flights down (we transferred in Detroit). They were *active* on the plane although no screaming or anything unmanageable. They were thrilled when we arrived and were so excited to see the ocean and sand right outside our window.

Here is the condo we stayed at - it was huge and perfect for us. There were three bedrooms and our rooms were well away from my parents' so everyone had their own space. Pete was overwhelmed with glee when he found the kids' room had bunk beds and insisted he sleep on the top bunk b/c he is now "a big boy". So, although I was much more nervous than Paul, we let him and it was fine. He slept perfectly and the huge rail prevented him from even coming close to falling out.

Sunset was the best part of the day . . . simple beauty followed by the peace that would ensue after the boys were asleep :-)!

A view up the beach from our window. The waves were not too big so it was perfect for two toddlers. I had to laugh - we were often some of the only people in the water swimming some days . . . probably too cold for the locals but not for us northerners!!

Paul is the person on the right, flying a kite he and Pete bought. Of course I cut the kite out of the picture, but it was actually very high! Pete was excited, Paul let him hold it by himself a few times.
Here I am lounging on the front patio with David and Grandad. That sparkle in my eye is not the sunset, it was actually a couple Bloody Mary's my dad whipped up for me :-)!

A couple days into our trip we drove into nearby Tampa so I could meet a couple friends from one of my online message boards. Both girls have toddlers roughly the same age as David. On the left of me is G, and her daughter Eleanor and on the right is J and her son Quinn. It was a lot of fun and we all got along like we had know each other for a long time (wait - we have known each other for a long time!).

Eleanor the little cutie, looking gorgeous as usual.

In the children's play area David gives Quinn a big hug. "Heck, I don't care if our moms met on the Internet, I'm really having a blast here!"

Paul, my dad, and Peter took in a real baseball game at Dunedin to see Tampa Bay play the Toronto Blue Jays. Pete is typically good with hockey and other "active" sports, but I figured getting him to sit for a long time during a ball game would be an arduous task. He lasted 3 1/2 innings, urged to stay for that long by a box of popcorn and two ice slushies.

Meanwhile David and I headed to the outlets for an afternoon of hard core shopping. We did pretty well. I got some goodies for my new nephew Pierson and bought my first Coach bag. Yes, it was significantly marked down since I bought it at the outlet store but it's authentic nonetheless ;-)!
My sister and her husband Mark were visiting the same area and staying with her MIL Barb. They spent some time with us so I caught a cute shot of all three cousins enjoying some lunch while catching some Backyardigans.
Reese is such a big girl now . . . eight months old and happy and smiling all the time. She's a real cutie and was loving hanging out with her entertaining cousins. She laughed at David constantly.

We spent a day at the Florida Aquarium - it was totally cool! Pete and David loved all the fish and we saw a few minutes of a shark show. Before Pete had simply had enough and bolted away and ran to the next exhibit!

Lauren with Reese and David, and a scene from Finding Nemo behind her!

I really should have known there was an outdoor water park at the Aquarium, but that detail had escaped me. So here is Pete sans swimsuit, stripped down to his shorts and running around the park like a maniac. David was so fast I couldn't catch him on camera!

And if you're not gagging already at all the pictures, here are a few shots of the kids at the beach. I had over a hundred photos, but thought I'd spare you all, obviously!

Reese floating out to sea in her blow up lobster.
David happy as a clam with his beach toys.

Peter creating a sand castle masterpiece.

The ever-curious David scoping out the sand.

Here are my three guys having fun on the beach and enjoying the sunshine!

5 comments:

Donna said...

Glad to hear that you all had a fun time! It was great to see all your pics. I will post some of mine when we get home.

erika said...

Ohmygosh! It looks like such a fun filled trip! I would love to have a condo on the beach like that... what a GREAT idea!

Landerson said...

Pictures don't do those kids justice.....they're GORGEOUS and had a fabulous time together. Reese misses her busy cousins!

heidi said...

Those are great pictures, Shannon! Looks like you had an awesome time! I'm jealous that the other girlies got to meet you in person ;-)

lexa said...

Glad everyone had a great time!

 
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