Sunday, March 9, 2008

On the Road in the Florida Keys with the Girls!

Back from vacation! I could post a photo of the snow I came home to, but that would not be near as exciting as photos of what we left behind in the Florida Keys! For the first time ever, E, B joined me for a girls only vacation. We all met in Ft. Lauderdale, picked up a rental car and drove to the Keys. Our first two days were spent in Key Largo at the Manatee Bay Resort. This is a former Doubletree hotel that is being remodeled by new owners. We took a risk by booking our stay without much knowledge of the place, but we lucked out with this one. The girls and I took advantage of the pool and small beach area. All it took to get us in vacation mood the first few hours was lots of sunscreen and reading material! Of course a pina colada, some local beer and a margarita might have been involved in the attitude adjustments too :) If you've ever been to the Keys, you know the one "must" is watching the sunset. I've so many good photos of sunsets, it was hard to choose. This was the winner for this post. If I remember correctly, this one was from the pier at the original Islamorado Fish Company. We stopped there to watch them feed the sharks and tarpons.
On Wednesday, we drove on down the Overseas Highway to Key West. We were blessed with beautiful weather for the entire week. The only rain conveniently came late at night so the skies were gorgeous as was the ocean. We stopped to take a few photos at the Seven Mile Bridge. I think it was Daytona Bike Week so there were several motorcycle groups on the road down in this area too. The traffic moved along nicely though and we didn't have any trouble with the drive. Of course, it's not easy to take the wrong turn, because it's pretty much a straight shot! Our destination in Key West was the Merlin Guesthouse. Several older homes had been combined in a bed and breakfast format. Our room was large with a separate sitting room/kitchen and dining area. Nothing fancy, but clean and quite adequate for us. The location was ideal though as it is only one block off of Duval Street and pretty much right in the middle of the island. We parked the car and walked the entire time were there. Exercise that we needed with all the good food we consumed during the week!

An example of ONE of the pieces of Key Lime Pie that we shared during the week! This one had raspberry sauce, probably my personal favorite. Yum!

Key West is known for the chickens roaming the island. I don't know the story behind them, but they're everywhere, even in the open air restaurants! As you walk down the streets, you can hear the roosters crowing in the morning and also the new chicks peeping in the bushes.

I've got many more photos I could post, but Blogger is not being cooperative with the photo uploading tonight. (Anyone else having trouble uploading more than one at a time?) So maybe I'll save them and try again tomorrow. Overall, I think we had a great time. We tried snorkeling, some of us more successful than others. And of course, participating in our favorite common hobby - shopping! I don't think I should say any more about the eating! Other than we decided that now that we've spent all our calories and money on good food, we'll be trying the Campbell's Soup Diet for the next few weeks (or at least until another trip is necessary!).

It was nice to spend the week with my two daughters, but maybe they were tired of Mom after our "bonding" time! I know they both were happy to get away from work and dreary winter weather for a few days. Hopefully the next time DIL J can join us. But it is always nice to get home and it was nice to sleep in my own bed last night! Thanks for joining me for a taste of the Keys!


JD said...

Glad you guys had fun. Wish I could have gone, but we will just have to have more notice on time next girls vacation :) Oh well, I need to save up my vacation for the fall, I am sure we will all see a little more of each other around then too, cannot wait!

Please share the pictures when you get them uploaded. Can someone put them on Kodak so I can print out a good one of the three of you?

Jessica said...

Fun pictures! I am glad you all had a fun time and made it home. I am ready for the beach now. :)

Janet said...

There's more pix to come, if blogger will fix itself! For some reason Kodak not's working for me either, so I might have to email them as attachments. I won't send then all, just some good ones.

Jen - We'll all be jealous when you and James go to Hawaii!!!!

Jessica - congrats on the new job! Anxious to hear about your new abode!

Rhonda and Allyn said...

Janet, I am SOooOO jealous of you!!! I have never been further south than Orlando and I've always wanted to go to the Keys. It is SUCH a long drive for us though and would take more than a 4 day weekend. One day though....

What beautiful pics! I've had trouble with the uploading of pics with blogger today too and cannot do more than one at a time. How frustrating!

Any other year, we would have been one of the many bikers you saw on the way to Daytona, but we chose not to go this year.

Loved your update!!


Janet said...

Nice to hear from you Rhonda!
I think DH was thinking he would have liked to be on a bike down there too! So probably the next time I'm in Florida, we'll be on the Harley!! But who knows when that will be!
Thanks for the nice comments - hope all is well with you and your family.

sarah said...

glad yall had a good time. has your snow melted, yet?

Anonymous said...

Loved your Key West photos. Have been there once but love to go back and spend more time there.
Betty in Utah